I saw an interesting post on the Smash Up Facebook group the other day. It was a link to a post on the AEG (Alderac Entertainment Group) blog by CEO John Zinser regarding their policy on expansions in 2020 and beyond.
Last year, AEG made the pledge that they were going to publish fewer games and concentrate on quality instead. This was in addition to changing how they went about some of their sales plans: moving some game franchises to Kickstarter, etc.
AEG seemed to fall into the trap where every game was considered to have at least one expansion, even some games before the base game was published.
That’s not always a good thing.
To quote Zinser:
“I also understand that expansions were a big part of AEG’s business plan for many years. CCGs and RPGs are built to be expanded and that is often how the long tail money is made and also how you keep players engaged in those games. As we transitioned into card games the expansions continued. Thunderstone, Smash-Up, and even Mystic Vale all IMO benefited from expansions.
We also tried to expand some games that did not need it like Fantahzee.”
I’ve never played Fantahzee, but it doesn’t sound like a game that needs an expansion.
I’m a man who loves expansions, though I understand that certain games don’t need one. For me, games like Mystic Valeand Smash Up thrive with a bunch of expansions because the games consist of a bunch of cards. Who wouldn’t mind more cards that do new and innovative things?
Whew! After telling you the first half of my Top 10 games played in 2019, I needed a break. Being surrounded by all that awesomeness can be tiring!
But now I’m back with the bottom half of the list. These are the 5 best games I played in 2019, and you know they’re going to be good because I have the best taste (seriously, you do know that, right?).
Please note that this is not the Top 10 games of 2019. I only wish I had played enough actual 2019 games to qualify to have a Top 10.
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…)
(Edit: This is one of my Top 5 Games Played of all Time, as of February 2019 anyway. Check out the other games as well!)
I’ve read a bunch of R.A. Salvatore’s “Drizzt Do’Urden” books set in the Dungeons & Dragons Forgotten Realms setting.
I think I’ve read 40, but there are probably 40 more (Editor – That’s probably an exaggeration) and I’ve always enjoyed the world-building Salvatore has done with the series, almost even more than the characters.
Drizzt is a Drow (Dark Elf), a former denizen of the underworld that’s fittingly called “The Underdark.” He’s an outcast from Drow society because it is pretty much a cesspool of evil scheming and betrayal and they worship the evil spider-goddess Lolth.
Since Drizzt has his own game, why not play a game where you get to be a conniving betrayer who’s looking out for your family’s interest and trying to bring down the other noble houses among the Drow?
Now you can, with Tyrants of the Underdark (2016), the deck-building area control game designed by Peter Lee, Rodney Thompson, Andrew Veen with art by apparently nobody (I think it just spontaneously appeared on the cards in some miraculous event that should probably be canonized) and published by Gale Force 9 and Wizards of the Coast.
(Literally, the art credit on Boardgame Geek is “N/A”)
(Edit 3/9/18) – Steve Ellis did the wonderful box cover, as noted (by him) in the comments below. Thanks, Steve!