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Which board games do you play?

edited June 10 in Off-topic

Morning! I was just wondering if anyone plays any board games? Since Lockdown we've been building up a collection at our house, and I just ordered Hive, very excited to try that out! Just wondered if knob twiddlers also like something else to do with their fingers. I saw that Hainbach likes chess, but that's way too intellectual for me.

Comments

  • Exploding Kittens isn’t a board game but it’s a card game. We had to buy another set - the cards were getting so worn you were able to tell what they were from the back. It’s a fantastic family game.

  • @robosardine said:
    Exploding Kittens isn’t a board game but it’s a card game. We had to buy another set - the cards were getting so worn you were able to tell what they were from the back. It’s a fantastic family game.

    Brilliant! My kids have had their eyes on this!

  • My partner and I play lots of board games and pre-pandemic we had weekly hangouts with our friends. Since the pandemic we’ve still gotten together a few times but haven’t really dug into any new games.

    Our favourite two-to-four player games are probably Star Realms, Arboretum, and Castles of Burgundy. With four serious players, Concordia, Brass Birmingham, and Terraforming Mars can be lots of fun; with four less-serious players, Azul, Magic Maze, and Everdell are always reliable. The best party games we’ve found are Dutch Blitz, Trapwords, and Shifty Eyes Spies.

    All of these games have held up over many playthroughs so I have no trouble recommending them!

  • Pandemic Legacy (all seasons are good). Twilight Imperium. Smash Up. Castles of Burgundy.

  • We got well into it over the last few years. Hive is excellent and I was totally skeptical at first.

    Some favourites:

    • Carcassonne
    • Settlers or Catan
    • Pandemic (not really felt like playing that for a while...)
    • House on Haunted Hill (but it's a bit of a time investment to get into it)
    • Ticket to Ride

    There's some great ones we've played but they're serious money. Zombicide is good, for example, but it's £50-60 for starters

    For 2 players I really like Odin's Ravens and Jaipur.

  • edited June 10

    Lords of Waterdeep, but, I insist, with both expansions:

    https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/110327/lords-waterdeep

    Great theme, you are one of the ‘hidden lords’ of the fantasy medieval-like D&D port city of Waterdeep, each with your own secret agenda, not going on the typical Role Player dungeon crawls yourself this time, but sending out your ‘agents’ to the various and varied buildings of the old city in order to hire and deploy the teams of warriors, clerics, wizards and rogues (alright, coloured wooden cubes) who’ll do all the fighting, healing, wizarding and thieving on quests for you.

    This happens ‘off board’ as it were - you claim a quest, and once you can fulfill it’s completion criteria, e.g. hiring a wizard, two clerics, and spending six cash - you get it’s victory point value to tot up at the end of the game. Simple. Along the way you’ll have to make tough choices about when, or if, to grab cash, play Intrigue cards for your benefit or to do down an opponent, recruit adventurers to complete your quests, and so on. Always, too many choices and not enough Agents…

    Meanwhile, out in the open you can see your Lord sprinting ahead on the victory point track, but don’t celebrate too soon - at the end of the game, with secret agenda conditions revealed, the ‘obvious winner’ might be in for a nasty shock…

    Easy to learn, deep to master, no dice involved, endlessly variable due to the interplay of Quest and Intrigue decks, buildings, and Lords, played over 8 rounds in anywhere from 40 minutes to two hours depending on number of players. Great as a real board game, also plays brilliantly as an iPad app. Practice against the not-bad AI, then take it online to play your friends head to head - it has been a regular online date for me with gamer friends I couldn’t meet in person through This Present Hell.

    As you become more familiar with the game, you’ll appreciate the synergies possible between a Lord and their agenda - do you go for war, with Barbarians and warlike buildings galore, rely on the slow subtle working of Arcana for your wizard Lord, grab the cash as a Commerce orientated Lord? Every Lord always has at least two paths to maximum points, so it’s always a question of yet more difficult choices…

    You don’t have to be a D&D geek to get it either - it works fine purely on it’s own terms as a standalone, finely tuned hybrid of Eurogame and Ameritrash, excellent (and thrillingly different at each level) as two, three or four player, (wouldn’t recommend 5, it’ll drag) with many excellent opportunities to stuff your friends in despicable ways en route to victory. Always a must, that last point…

    In my dreams, someone decides to do a Cthulhu- themed version of Waterdeep, and then my gaming bliss would be complete. Unfortunately, the pre-eminent Lovecraft gaming IP is owned by a rival to the D&D franchise, so I guess that is never going to happen…

  • Exploding Kittens is a great game - my kids love it.

    We like Carcassonne as well - in fact, we took the game with us when we went to Carcassonne, FR and got to play Carcassonne IN Carcassonne. It was a pretty cool family moment.

  • Currently trying to pre-order Summoner Wars second edition...

    Annoyed I missed the earlybird with this.

  • Played a lot over the years, I’ma but fan of Martin Wallace games, Tinner’s Trail, London, A Study in Emerald etc, I just got lucky on a charity shop copy of his Discworld title as well - can’t wait to try it, but not played at all in the last year and a bit, apart from online ones with my old group where we played some classics like ticket to ride, small world, evolution...

    Flamme Rouge is great if you can get it, a tour cycle race sim that’s so easy to pick up and play, and can be extended to play multiple races as a proper tour... K2 is another old favourite, mountain climbing sim

    Two real oldies, Survive Atlantis, great with kids and Adel Verpflichtet, simple auction game, that actually is also great with kids - My mates daughters love it...

  • @Svetlovska that sounds excellent! My two youngest sons want us to play D&D but I haven't got the first clue what I'm doing so, although we did get a set, we've get to do much with it. I got the Simon Stalenhag RPG of Tales From The Loop which might be a kind of side-door into that world. I'll endeavour to try it this weekend but the iPad app of Waterdeep sounds like an excellent way to try that out before a significant outlay.

    I always fancied the RPG set in China Mieville's Bas-Lag universe I read about once as it always bothered me that he spent so long world-building but I never got enough time there in the books. I think that kind of RPG is probably some way off down the D&D road somewhere for now though

  • @Krupa : Aagh! I envy you! If it is the one set in Ankh- Morpork where you are buying buildings, you got a result there. (There’s at least one other Discworld themed game put there, but it is not great.) It’s out of print now, and quite valuable on the collector market, but I played a friend’s copy about a year ago - it’s a lovely game. Not as great as Waterdeep, obvs (- yes, I am obsessed) but pretty close…

    Obliquely, you’ve probably read Neil Gaiman’s original short story A Study In Emerald that the eponymous game (1st or 2nd Ed?) is based on, but it is very good. For anyone interested who hasn’t read it,Gaiman has made it available on his own website, complete with facsimile ads:

    https://www.neilgaiman.com/mediafiles/exclusive/shortstories/emerald.pdf

  • edited June 10

    @PeteSasqwax : you can obviously tell I’m a fan of Waterdeep ,:) but I must stress it isn’t at all an RPG or even RPG lite like the old Heroquest (but see below).

    D&D, Runequest, Call of Cthulhu RPG etc all play very differently from Waterdeep. Real RPGs are all about building up a character, improving it over time, and ‘getting into character’ as your personal hero. Like this:

    Great fun, for sure, but a very different experience.

    Waterdeep is at a remove - the ‘heroes’ here are just assets/cubes you get and spend, the only ‘character’ you are in the game is your ‘hidden Lord’, assigned to you randomly at the start, and staying the same throughout.

    Waterdeep shares the theme, fantasy locations, artwork asserts, lore and characters of D&D, and references the idea of quests, magic, certain kinds of monsters etc, but it is very much a board game, not even a board game pretending to be an RPG.

    If you wanted a lightweight entry into actual role playing via a board game, you might want to check this out if/when it launches some time this year:

    https://www.polygon.com/2020/9/22/21449264/heroquest-board-game-remake-release-date-price-hasbro-haslab.

    Having said that, Waterdeep, as I believe I may already have mentioned once or twice, (!) is a brilliant game in its’s own right, and the app implementation is a lesson in how to do board games as apps properly.

    https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/d-d-lords-of-waterdeep/id648019675

    If you want to try the RPG like character development thing via the medium of an iPad app you might want consider these:

    https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/warhammer-quest/id573516833

    https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/xcom-enemy-within/id881270303

  • @Svetlovska said:
    @Krupa : Aagh! I envy you! If it is the one set in Ankh- Morpork where you are buying buildings, you got a result there. (There’s at least one other Discworld themed game put there, but it is not great.) It’s out of print now, and quite valuable on the collector market, but I played a friend’s copy about a year ago - it’s a lovely game. Not as great as Waterdeep, obvs (- yes, I am obsessed) but pretty close…

    Obliquely, you’ve probably read Neil Gaiman’s original short story A Study In Emerald that the eponymous game (1st or 2nd Ed?) is based on, but it is very good. For anyone interested who hasn’t read it,Gaiman has made it available on his own website, complete with facsimile ads:

    https://www.neilgaiman.com/mediafiles/exclusive/shortstories/emerald.pdf

    It was quite a scoop actually, both Discworld games, plus Isle of Skye, unplayed all, for less than fifteen notes... I'm not supposed to buy games anymore as I'm a mental collector, but that was too good to turn down, never thought I'd even see a copy of Ankh Morpork... the Study in Emerald thing was a really nice collaboration, reaching back to both Lovecraft and Conan Doyle, with Gaiman's lush prose as a lovely polish to it all, that and Wallace on mechanics, just amazing stuff :)

  • @Krupa : that is indeed a bargain! I was attracted to the Study in Emerald game, as all things Lovecraft are right up my Cyclopean, squamous and quite probably eldritch alley, but I got the impression that the first edition had some mechanics issues, and the second, though much improved, was really a game for three or more. I have one regular IRL gaming friend close by, another in a different city, so it is rare that I can make a three or more player game work. It may not surprise you to hear that I also tend to prioritise games with a solo mode… :)

  • @Daveypoo said:
    Exploding Kittens is a great game - my kids love it.

    We like Carcassonne as well - in fact, we took the game with us when we went to Carcassonne, FR and got to play Carcassonne IN Carcassonne. It was a pretty cool family moment.

    Carcassonne’s quite near me. I got horrendous food poisoning in a restaurant there once. When you’re going up from the river to the Cité, it’s on the left. Vomited for three days. Probably that sort of Carcassonne experience isn’t in the board game, though?

  • @Svetlovska said:
    @Krupa : that is indeed a bargain! I was attracted to the Study in Emerald game, as all things Lovecraft are right up my Cyclopean, squamous and quite probably eldritch alley, but I got the impression that the first edition had some mechanics issues, and the second, though much improved, was really a game for three or more. I have one regular IRL gaming friend close by, another in a different city, so it is rare that I can make a three or more player game work. It may not surprise you to hear that I also tend to prioritise games with a solo mode… :)

    Yeah too right bargain of the year. I remember the mechanic glitch in Emerald too, but I don't think it was too bad, and I don't get as much face to face gaming as I'd like any more, even before pandemic so have been ipad gaming as much as, or probably more for years, just got Root, which is a lovely little thing...

  • @Svetlovska Ah, thank you so much, that's brilliant! I think the idea of getting comfortable within D&D themes whilst remaining in the familiar world of board games could be a perfect idea for us.

  • What's a board game?

    :)

  • @purpan2 said:
    Carcassonne’s quite near me. I got horrendous food poisoning in a restaurant there once. When you’re going up from the river to the Cité, it’s on the left. Vomited for three days. Probably that sort of Carcassonne experience isn’t in the board game, though?

    Yikes - definitely not. We stayed in the Cité and honestly had one of the best meals of our trip at a restaurant there. I was shocked - I fully expected it to be touristy garbage and would've been totally ok with that (the Cité is just MAGICAL) but it blew our innocent little American minds.

    I have FANTASTIC memories of that trip. No food poisoning - yet! ;)

  • Oh wow, thanks for all the advice people!! Suddenly I have a different type of GAS coming along... so so many good recommendations and happy to see things veering into the RPG territory too! I have been lusting after gloomhaven but I think that will take a level of commitment I just can’t provide! That lords of water deep looks ace though! @PeteSasqwax a bas-lag RPG!?!?!? No effing way.

    So I should also recommend something as I asked the original question, my family have 2 big favourites the first is Dixit which the kids absolutely love, even if they don’t quite get and the second is micromacro: crime city. Which is an awesome sort of where’s Wally type game where you have to solve adorable murders.

    https://www.micromacro-game.com/en/index.html

    You can even try the game out online which is cool.

  • edited June 10

    We picked up Planetarium a while back on a kickstarter. Love this game.
    https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/200454/planetarium

  • @gusgranite said:
    We picked up Planetarium a while back on a kickstarter. Love this game.
    https://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/200454/planetarium

    Oh that looks splendid, I worked on a similar design a few years ago but I got carried away with orbital (game) mechanics and never finished the design, story of my life really, but we had a couple of great sessions of it at my London group...

  • Interesting reading about new board games. Planetarium looks good, and that exploding kitten one sounds interesting. Games are a great way to share laughs with friends and family. When COVID hit and I lost all my gigs, one of the things I did to pass the time was make/play games. Made a chess board with a Nine men’s Morris board (on other side).

    We still play mostly the old favorites, like monopoly, trivial pursuit, and card games. Also we sometimes play a traditional Korean game called Yut Nori where you throw/roll long sticks (use like dice) and move a piece on the board (you can make a board on the carpet with masking tape) trying to get to the end before your opponent. Also during COVID I programmed a lot of puzzle/board games in the QB64 programming language you can grab free off their official forum (posted under my username), if your interested in game programming.

    Dav

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