Boardgames That Work Better as Apps

In some of my social media postings, I have mentioned that Potion Explosion worked better for me in app form because it was too fiddly on the table.

This brings to mind something that I’ve thought about quite a bit.

What other board games have apps (either on iOS or Steam) that are preferable to playing the board game?

The crown jewel of that, for me, is Ascension. Deckbuilders in general work great as apps because you have no cards to wreck while shuffling and all of the shuffling/dealing is done for you. And you don’t have to put out more money for sleeves.

What’s not to like?

But there’s one game that I really think of when I think of board games that I have no interest in playing on the table but will easily play the electronic version.

That game is the Games Workshop classic, Talisman.

Talisman 1

First, the app is just phenomenal and Nomad Games has done a marvelous job with it. They support it, put out plenty of bug fixes, and are working diligently at putting out all of the expansions. To date, they’ve released three of the big box expansions (expansions that add to the board) as well as four or five small box expansions (expansions that just add characters and cards).

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Kickstarter – The Pursuit of Happiness: Community

This is the story of how I recently backed, and am greatly looking forward to, the new expansion for the game The Pursuit of Happiness. Called Community, it has a pledge level that allows you to get the base game as well.

Pursuit of Happiness - Community

I’m not normally a backer of Kickstarter board games. Hell, I think I’ve backed two video games and that’s it.

However, I’ve been recently rethinking that stance. I started playing some games that had originally been funded on Kickstarter and found that they were actually pretty cool games.

Then two things happened within hours of each other. First, I kept reading about how good this game was. I then was browsing the board game section of Kickstarter and found the Community expansion’s page there.  I started thinking about it.

Then my friend and co-blogger wrote the great post about deciding what to crowdfund. The combination of those two things, plus a bit of heavy thinking, and suddenly I’m backing my first Kickstarter board game.

And I’m happy to do it.

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Review – Diamonds

Everybody knows those standard card games. Hearts, Spades…of course the world needs games for the other suits, don’t they?

Yes, there is a Clubs game out too, but that’s not what this review is about.

It’s about the totally awesome (said totally in a Valley Girl way) game called Diamonds, published by Stronghold Games and designed by Mike Fitzgerald, thus completing the standard suit names for games (I think they probably win an award for that).

Diamonds 4

I have to say that this is quickly becoming my favourite card game ever. It takes everything that is cool about card games like Hearts or Spades, and then amps it up to infinity (ok, a tad overstated, but you get the gist).

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News: New Ascension Expansion – Gift of the Elements

I am a big fan of the deck-building game Ascension. It was the first real game I played when I returned to the board-gaming world, so it’s always held a soft spot in my heart.

At the beginning of March, Ultra Pro and Stoneblade Entertainment announced an eleventh (holy crap, eleventh????) expansion for this wonderful franchise.

 

Ascension Gift Elements

Called Ascension: Gift of the Elements, this expansion brings back a couple of mechanics that I’ve loved from previous editions: Events and Transform.

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Crowdfunding Board Games: What Are You Looking For?

Pledging for Plebes

.   .   .

By @ravingmadfolio (contributor)

As if we’re not going to talk about board games enough, let’s talk about backing board game campaigns in crowdfunding websites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo.

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It’s All About the Insert

One of the really fun things about board games, besides playing them if they are really good, is that wonderful feeling when you first get a game. It’s all in shrink wrap, pristine, nobody has touched what’s inside. It has that new game smell.

What’s waiting for you when you take off that lid? You know that there are going to be a bunch of counter sheets and a board, or some cards or something, but what will it look like? And what will it look like when you have spent the time punching out everything and bagging it up?

Is there a nice place to put all of the stuff you just punched out or the cards from which you’ve removed all the cellophane? Is it an empty box without even any baggies (like the first edition of The Castles of Mad King Ludwig)?

Some games come with beautiful inserts that fit everything perfectly.

Others are Fantasy Flight Games.

Planet Steam 1
(Planet Steam insert above)

Don’t get me wrong. Fantasy Flight Games isn’t the only competitor in the crappy insert tournament. But they would win a lot of years.

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A Game That’s Played 6 times in 2 Months Has to be Good

(Previously published on Game Informer and BoardgameGeek)

I’m a gamer, but I’m also a history buff.

One of my new games bought in December manages to scratch both of those itches, and it is oh so pleasant a feeling! I picked it up the last week of December and played it 6 times between then and the end of February.

Worlds Fair 1893 (designed by J. Alex Klaven and published by Foxtrot Games & Renegade Game Studios) is a 2016 game that combines elements of area control and set collection, in a masterfully simple and quick game that also has a bit of a worker placement feel to it as well.

IMG_1927

It is a game for 2-4 players, and it scales really well to all player counts. It’s not one of those “it’s really for more players, but here’s some mechanism so that you can play it with 2” games.

It goes for 3 rounds, with a scoring phase happening at the end of each round.

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