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renee

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Use my invite URL to register (this will give me kudos)
http://boardgaming.com/register/?invited_by=jonky
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Intermediate Reviewer
Intermediate Reviewer
Review 8 games and receive a total of 380 positive review ratings.
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Grade 200 more reviews or tips by clicking "Yes" or "No" in response to the question "Was this helpful?"
Go to the Carcassonne page
Go to the Defenders of the Realm page
Go to the 7 Wonders page
Go to the Nexus Ops page
Go to the Monopoly Deal Card Game page
Go to the War of the Ring page
Go to the Ticket to Ride page
Go to the Thurn and Taxis page
10
Go to the Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation - Deluxe Edition page
106 out of 126 gamers thought this was helpful

This is one of my favorite 2 player games. Don’t let the fact that it is vaguely like Stratego turn you off.

Components
A++
The artwork is really great.
There 2 sets of large plastic stands the have slots in the top to slide the characters into.Each of the characters are printed onto thick board and they are double sided. So you have multiple versions of the same characters.

Gameplay
Players advance their characters on the board to try and achieve their objective. If you are the fellowship you need to get Frodo to Mount Doom. If you are Sauron you got get into the Shire or kill Frodo.

The cool part is that you can’t see the characters of the opposing team. This makes for a really fun meta game, I love messing with my opponent by taunting them and trying to do silly hand tricks so they forget which character is where.

Easy to Learn
This is one of the easiest to learn but still engaging Lord of the Rings Games out there. I have played it with younger games as well as seasoned gamers.

9
Go to the Hot Rod Creeps page

Hot Rod Creeps

60 out of 75 gamers thought this was helpful

Typically I’m not a fan of racing games.

However, Hot Rod Creeps is super fun and moves quickly.
The game components are very nice and I love how the components are modular and you can make all kinds of different tracks.

One time we had a gap after the ring of fire jump. If you landed on that space it lead to a shortcut.

Hot Rod Creeps is different then most other racing car games because you use a preset deck of cards to control your vehicle. Each deck has it’s own playing style. For example if you pick the Alien deck they are the masters of technology, so you will want to try and load up your hot rod with all kinds of sweet upgrades.

9
Go to the Food Fight page

Food Fight

50 out of 53 gamers thought this was helpful

The great thing about this site is that we can all share what we love and dislike about a particular game.

I think there is more strategy to Food Fight then at first appears. The mechanics work well with a theme that is both entertaining and well illustrated. How many popular card drafting games can claim that?

Drafting cards in this game makes sense thematically and is fun. Players draft a squad of food soldiers that will give them the best tactical advantage on the battle field. This is vaguely akin to a game called Slapshot! but with way more strategy and integration of the character’s various abilities.

Food Fight also has some elements of Magic the Gathering. In Magic you send fighters to a battlefield and power them up with instants. Food Fight also has instants but with funny themes like Salsa Bandito. A unique element of Food Fight is that there are multiple battlefields (plates) to try and win, breakfast, lunch, and dinner, in addition to a dog who tries and gobble up your meal.

I love games like Food Fight that are interactive and easy for new comers to pick up. If you’re not sure about purchasing this game you can try out the ios version, which is also well done.

The Awesome Artwork
Maybe this part of my Review is more of Rant but I just don’t understand what there is not to like about the illustration and design of Food Fight. The artwork is fantastic – that is what drew me to this game. You may think the Food Fight art is strange but the skill level of the illustrations are exceptional. In fact I think the artwork of all Cryptozoic games are a cut above the norm.

I have read reviews that say that color palette is too muted. Be reminded that a distinguishing component of most Eurogames is that same muted color palette – Ra, Hansa Teutonica, Princes of Florence to name a few. In a world that is already overly saturated in order to demand visual attention I don’t need my retinas burned out every time I play a board game.

C’mon people, do you think the artwork of some of the ‘more popular’ card games are better? All I’m gonna say about that is Intrigue – Scout.

9
Go to the Valdora page

Valdora

43 out of 49 gamers thought this was helpful

Who left all these gems piled up in the middle of the road?!?!

To me Valdora is like Dominion, it has something really great going on but could possibly be taken a step further in terms of themeing with mechanics.

This game lets you move your little bowling-pin-dude as many spaces as you want as long as someone or something isn’t stopping you. Each turn is quick. Many boardgames use an action point system for movement(Arkham Horror, Adventurers, Defenders of the Realm), in other words you can only move a set number spaces each turn. After having gamed under the action point allowance’s tyranny I felt a strange sense of freedom.

Basic Gameplay
You go around collecting jewels in order to complete commissions that are picked up in the cities. Completion of a commission awards you craftsmen and eventually workshops. You are awarded victory points as you complete commissions.

If you have a chance to play this game I would recommend it, but it is hard to find in the US.

This Game is definitely German
Random Medieval Theme
Muted Colors
Filling Orders/Contracts
Workshops
Another neat aspect is the wooden card holders that you flip through as if you’re turning pages in a book, what this has to do with anything I am unsure but it is definitely reinforces the “Germani-ness”.

Interesting to Note:
If you look at the “town” that surrounds the giant book I think the roofs look like cereal.

9
Go to the Shadow Hunters Expansion Kit page
27 out of 45 gamers thought this was helpful

Fu-Ka and her Dynamite Nurse ability

Yes, you read that right.

The confused look on your friend’s faces as they try to pronounce that card make the this expansion completely worth it.

When it comes to “gateway” games I feel this game is often overlooked, when the fact is I have made more converts with this game than any other in my arsenal.

One of the strengths of this game is that it accommodates a large number of players and yet the turns are engaging enough and pass by quickly so players do not zone-out and get bored. As far as the expansion I say the more merrier!

Specifics
This expansion gives you more characters:
3 Hunters
3 Shadows
4 Neutrals

The flavor text for these new characters is amusing and I really enjoy the new neutrals win conditions.

Typo:
Hermit's Tough Lesson of Love
I bet your HP is 12 or more…”
This should probably include the Wight even though he is not specifically named on the Lesson of Love card.

7
Go to the Small World: Tales and Legends page
69 out of 90 gamers thought this was helpful

Tales and Legends is a set of cards that change up the rules in some fundamental or silly way.

Each round a new card is introduced. As you play you get to see the upcoming card so you have time to plan.

The cards have funny illustrations and add new flavor to the game.

8
Go to the Carcassonne page

Carcassonne

103 out of 110 gamers thought this was helpful

Kinda like building a jiggsaw puzzle but with scoring,
…and meeples,
…and the end-game looks like a bunch of poop-cities floating around in a strange alien intestine.

In a Nutshell
Carcassonne is a great starter game and lends itself well to being played with a group of people who just wanna hang out and talk while playing the game. The scoring might be hard to follow but it doesn’t seem to matter too much because the game is quick and fun.

Specifics
Each player takes a tile from the pool and places it on the table alongside another tile that has already been played. The meeps are placed on the tiles and receive points as certain features are built (like roads, cities, and cloisters).

Catan vs. Carcassonne
Catan and Carcassonne were both made in Germany, have similiar themes, and were designed by men named Klaus. (Klaus vs. Klaus…lol)
Personally I like Carcassonne better than Catan, although I recognize that Catan is a superior game mechanically. Catan starts to wear on me, some Catan games are drawn out. I consider both games to be gateway games to be played with new gamers, so I’d rather play something quick and light like Carcasonne. Maybe I’m just sick of asking “wait you are selling sheep?!?! or asking for them?!?”

The Takeaway
I have suggested 2 game variations in the tips section.
1. Players select 3 tiles to hold in their hands and play them like you would in Scrabble or Dominoes.
2. The Carcass-Zone…hahah read more about it in the tips section.

whatawhale

6
Go to the Ticket to Ride: Alvin & Dexter page
89 out of 96 gamers thought this was helpful

Who wouldn’t want an awesome dinosuar figure and a nice illustration of an alien spacship blowin’ up some trains?
C’mon don’t be a cheapskate.

This expansion only coasts $8-$11 and is nicely sculpted and designed.
The mechanic works well and it a fun concept.

However, to be honest you don’t need to buy the expansion (well I guess that wouldn’t be honest but you know what I mean). You can easily find the rules online and use your own substitue figures to create your own makeshift Alvin & Dexter Expansion, there’s not much too it.

How it Works:
You spend your wild cards to move Alvin and Dexter around the map. They cause the city to be in chaos so players cannot build out of that station. Also, if at the end of the game one the monsters is in one of your destinations or starting points you get half the points for that route.

There is also a bonus given to the persons who used the monsters the most.

whatawhale

10
Go to the Monopoly Deal Card Game page
58 out of 67 gamers thought this was helpful

Monopoly and Monopoly Deal (MD) share a common ancestor, but like a great person born of a terrible parent you can’t help but wonder if the 2 are even related.

In a Nutshell:
Don’t let the title fool you, MD just has the veneer of the old classic Parker Brothers Game. Thankfully they’ve cut everything that sucks about monopoly and left just enough to let inexperienced gamers feel comfortable.

Specifics:
One game can last as short as 15 minutes.
It is a game where you take turns drawing cards trying to combine cards into property sets. The fun happens when you get to watch the other players suffer as you charge exorbitant rents and steal their properties.

I think it achieves all kinds of corporate backstabbing in the way that the original intended.

The Takeaway:
I have played it with non-gamers, hardcore gamers, young gamers, stoned gamers, and my mother in law and everyone had fun. Unless you’re the President of the “To Cool to Game Club” you will enjoy this game.

Whatawhale Blog

4
Go to the Nuns on the Run page

Nuns on the Run

77 out of 91 gamers thought this was helpful

I’m not a fan of this game but I’m glad I gave it try.

In a Nutshell:
This game has a catchy title and fun concept, however it is a game that is essentially executed in your head.
This game is Scotland Yard but in the reverse.

Specifics: Why I Didn’t Enjoy It
You choose between playing a nun or a novice (a nun in training). When you make moves on the game board you don’t actually move your game token if you are a novice. In your mind you select a place that you are “placing” your token. Next, the nun says is there anyone I can hear near me.

Who’s to say that someone isn’t lying. It’s weird.

Take Away:
The only proper way to play this game is if you sing:
“Nuns on the Run” to tune of “Band on the Run” by Wings.

I’d like to consider an alternative mechanic that might add interest to the game…my revised version would be called “Nuns with the Runs.”

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