New to Me – October 2019

October was SHUX month.

SHUX is a 3-day boardgame convention in Vancouver that was simply phenomenal. I had so much fun, and would have had even more fun if I hadn’t felt so terrible.

Maybe next year!

You know what conventions mean, right?

No, not being told by multiple people that I need to take a shower.

That means a bunch of new to me games!

The Cult of the New to Me was very excited to hear I would be attending this convention. They wanted to see all of the new stuff that I would be talking about when I came back.

They also appear to be a bunch of lazy gits, because while they get mad at me for playing too many *new* games (not just new to me, but games that just came out), they never appear to actually play any “new to them” games themselves. I’m sensing some kind of scam here.

Cookies 2

Are they just here for the free cookies?

Anyway, prepare for a *really* long post. There are ten games on this list. Usually, I go into a bit more of an explanation of how to play, but that’s a bit abbreviated this time.

Leo Tolstoy ain’t writing this blog.

So without further adieu (my adieu got covered in vegetables and thus I had to throw it away anyway), let’s get started!

Continue reading “New to Me – October 2019”

Architects of the West Kingdom Getting More Stuff

It’s been a week of news last week, so why not start this week with another excellent tidbit that I can’t wait for?

Shem Phillips, co-designer of one of my favourite games (Architects of the West Kingdom), has announced that an expansion will be coming for this terrific game.


Architects of the West Kingdom: Age of the Artisans will add new Craft cards, new apprentices and buildings, a dual-layered Guildhall board and components for a sixth player (and apparently it’s orange!)

Shem announced it on Twitter with a link to the cover photo, but no other information has been revealed.

They’re not even sure if this is going to Kickstarter or not, but rest assured of one thing.

However it comes out, I’ll be there on the first day.

What do you think of all this?

Is it in your Top 5 games played of all time?

Or is it just another boring Euro?

Let me know in the comments.

Raiders of the North Sea digital releases July 30!

The July vacation continues (what, you didn’t think I was avoiding posting for some other reason, did you?), but I couldn’t let this one pass when I heard about it.

Raiders of the North Sea is one of my favourite games of all time, and the news that it was coming out on digital at some point was really exciting!

But then all went dark and we didn’t hear any news.

Until yesterday, that is.


I haven’t been keeping up with things as much as I normally do while I’ve been away, but I think this is a surprise announcement.

Dire Wolf Digital announced that it will be coming out on Tuesday, July 30. My brain is a bit vacation-addled, but I think that’s next week!


It will be very neat to finally be playing this on my mobile devices and perhaps even on Steam (not sure if I’m going to double dip or not yet).

It will be coming to the following devices, though: iOS, Android, Steam, and Nintendo Switch.

No word on pricing yet. It’s available to wishlist on Steam right now if you want, but no price listed there either.

I’ll try and get a review up fairly quickly next week (along with some other stuff since I’ve, you know, been away for almost a month).

What do you think of this game? Will you get it on one of your digital devices?

Any other thoughts?

And now, back our regularly scheduled Oregon Coast sunset.


See you next week!

Paladins of the West Kingdom on Kickstarter

With yesterday’s publication of my Architects of the West Kingdom review, I’ve probably been remiss in not reminding you about its companion game that’s currently on Kickstarter.

Image taken from the Kickstarter page

Paladins of the West Kingdom is still on Kickstarter for 7 more days, and it funded so quickly that I’m not sure any time device known to man actually measured it.

It’s also designed by Shem Philips and S J Macdonald with art by the Mico and is from Garphill Games and will be available later at retail by Renegade Games Studios.

In this game, you’re defending the kingdom that you built in Architects.

Let’s blurb this thing!

Paladins of the West Kingdom is set at a turbulent time of West Francia’s story, circa 900 AD. Despite recent efforts to develop the city, outlying townships are still under threat from outsiders. Saracens scout the borders, while Vikings plunder wealth and livestock. Even the Byzantines from the east have shown their darker side. As noble men and women, players must gather workers from the city to defend against enemies, build fortifications and spread faith throughout the land. Fortunately you are not alone. In his great wisdom, the King has sent his finest knights to help aid in our efforts. So ready the horses and sharpen the swords. The Paladins are approaching.

The mechanisms look great, the game play looks amazing from what I’ve seen (check out this overview of the game from 3 Minute Boardgames that will give you a lot of information in a short amount of time.

It sounds like it will be a bit more complex than the other games, which isn’t a bad thing as far as I’m concerned.

If all goes well (and given Garphill Games’ past Kickstarters, they probably will), it’s going to be reaching backers in December 2019.

You have 7 days left! The Kickstarter campaign ends on Thursday, March 21 at 8:00 pm Pacific Daylight Time.

I backed it on the first day, so I hope you join me.

(Note: This is not a paid ad at all. I’m just that enthused about this game coming, and since this is also an opinion blog, that’s my opinion!)


Review – Architects of the West Kingdom

History is my bag.

I was “hist” online for a long time before I realized that I would never be found by search engines with that title. Hence, “whovian223” was born (ok, not much better, but at least it’s findable!)

Western European history is even more my area of interest, so how could I turn down a chance to own Architects of the West Kingdom which takes place in France in 850 AD?


It helps that it’s designed by the brilliant (if I do say so myself) Shem Philips and S J MacDonald, with art by the incomparable The Mico. It’s published by Garphill Games and Renegade Game Studios, it came out in 2018 for 1-5 players.

It also hit #4 on my top games played of all time list. Pretty good for a 2018 game, eh?

What is the point? (Editor – what are you, a philosophy major?)

I mean what are you trying to do?

In Architects of the West Kingdom, you are…well, architects (I want a game where the architects are actually the enemy that you’re fighting) who are trying to impress the king of the Carolingean Empire by building awesome buildings as well as contributing to the construction of the Cathedral in the city. You are competing for raw materials, constructing your buildings, and maybe getting in the way of your opposing architects by turning their workers into the cops!

You can lead the virtuous path or you can be a scumbag and deal a lot with the black market to get your stuff and apprentices (or even rob the tax stand!)

How does it work?

Let’s take a look.

Continue reading “Review – Architects of the West Kingdom”

Top 25 Games Played of All Time (5-1)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

What a fitting day to share the love I have for my Top 5 Games.

We’ve reached the end, those of you who have been holding your breath to see what my Top 5 games played are. Hopefully you didn’t hold your breath so long that you went blue in the face!


I’ve heard there are problems with that.

Anyway, these are my 5 favourite games, and is it any surprise that all of them have reviews on this site (other than one, which said review is coming but I didn’t want to spoil the list by posting it first)?

It’s been fun doing this list, also knowing that most of these games wouldn’t really be on anybody else’s Top 25.

I like being unique.

As I’ve said in every entry, please keep in mind that this is only out of a total of 296 games, so it’s very possible that your favourite game is one that I haven’t played.

So why don’t we get on with this before I get a bunch of Aladdin fans swarming the blog commenting on Will Smith (I’ve heard they’re kind of like Islanders fans…)

Continue reading “Top 25 Games Played of All Time (5-1)”

Top 25 Games Played of All Time (15-11)

After a steady couple of days (thanks, Reddit!), it’s time to get back to the real business of this blog.

That’s right, fashion shows board games!

Apologies for the delay in getting back to the Best Games Played of All Time after a rollicking start, but let’s just say that I hate colds (Editor – Wow, what a controversial stance to take. You should make placards).

Anyway, let’s rectify that by jumping into the Top 15 with five more games that I just love to play.

Before continuing, let’s make everything clear as usual.

I have played 296 games as of the time I ranked them (I’ve reached 300 now), so some “classics” aren’t going to be represented because I haven’t played them.

Don’t get your underwear in a knot if your favourite classic from 2005 isn’t on here.

With that being said, are we ready?

I love how they left out the grammatical apostrophe just because there wasn’t room for it

Ok, now that that’s we’ve covered that (nice hair, dude)…

Continue reading “Top 25 Games Played of All Time (15-11)”