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Go to the Scythe: The Rise of Fenris page
 
5 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Mark B {Avid Gamer} Mar 13th, 2019
“Showcase for the best of modern board gaming”

I play this with the same group every year, and try to play several times outside of that. Even with new players at a full count, it’s quick–two and half hours max, shorter if everyone knows the rules. Decisions are tense and interesting. Strategies feel rewarding, and the game flows very smoothly. This game took all the things I like about modern board games (place a worker, take an action, build your engine, upgrade, manage resources, tactical movement, excellent blind auction combat, area control, exploration, just the right infusion of story and style), and combined them into one slick package.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
5 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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1
Go to the 5 Second Rule page
2
5 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Donovan Zanz Mar 10th, 2019
“Say 3 Words! Yay!”

What it wants to be: Here’s an interesting category, now name 3 things (or the names for a thing) in five seconds!

What it really is: An excuse to use euphemisms for genitalia. You spend more of your turn reading through several cards until you find one that’s actually interesting enough to read to another player, and hear those same three words every time a particular card is played in a game. Repeat this for every round.

Replay: 1 – Extremely Repetitive

Components: 1 – Boring (some meant to be “risque,” but are not really) categories

Easy to Learn: 5 – Read a card, say three words. Can’t get any easier than that.

Overall: Can be challenging when drinking (unless you’ve played more than a couple times), boring when not.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
5 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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8
Norway
Book Lover
I play blue
Paladin
Go to the Crypt page
8
8 of 8 gamers thought this was helpful
Elida {Avid Gamer} Feb 23rd, 2019
“Didn`t get enough inheritance?”

Crypt is a dice game where you compete to bring back some good treasures from your father`s tomb.

Yeah, your father is dead…such a shame. Now set your servants to work.

Each player has three dice which represents servants. They are sent into the crypt to bring back treasures, represented with cards. The cards have an image, a value and a color. These colors are also connected to collectors, that give you some extra bonuses. Instead of rolling the dice you set the value on your own. If you want two servants to work for one treasure, you set both dice to the same value; i.e. two 3s, which equals 6. When all dice are set, one player, holding the torch, gets to set any remaining dice if they want. That happens when dice are getting bumped off a card because someone else set a higher value to their dice on the same card.

What happens next? Going into a crypt is hard work for the lowly servants. Each player rolls their dice for each of the cards they obtain. If the value they set on the die/dice is higher than what is rolled, the servant is exhausted, and left in the box for later returns.

The game plays over several rounds, and the one with the highest score/best treasures win.

With this game you also have an opportunity to play solo, against your father`s ghost. Then you roll your father`s dice to see if he kicks out some of your dice, and you try to get a good score in the end by gathering the treasures and keeping your servants with you at the end of the game.

This is a quick, easy, little game, that can be played just about anywhere. It has a nice, new take on dice placement, as you don`t roll the dice to place them, rather to see if you get to keep them in play the next round. The fact that the game comes with an official solo version is an added plus for me these days, since I mostly play solo games. The artwork helps set the mood for the darkish theme, drawings are good. The dice are somewhat small, but they have a small box to fit into.

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8 out of 8 gamers thought this review was helpful
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7
Canada
Z-Man Games fan
I play red
Indie Board & Cards fan
Go to the Gizmos page
9
5 of 5 gamers thought this was helpful
iambfg {Avid Gamer} Feb 10th, 2019
“Fast Engine Building Fun”

Ever since Splendor came out in 2014, there has been a bunch of games that have been given the title of “Splendor killer” to the point it really has no meaning. And last summer CMON had a release that many called the “new” Splendor killer. So does Gizmos kill one of my favourite games ever? Or does it offer crazy combos and engine building to stand on it own merits? Let’s hit the lab and find out.

Components

CMON Games started out as Cool Mini Or Not. And while Gizmos does lack killer minis, the production quality is top notch. Start off with it’s spiraled notebook like ascetic, good artwork on square cards, high end transparent marbles, and a really cool marble dispenser, and Gizmos has a very good table presence. I played the game with my niece and the first thing she did was grab a marble and sing its praises. So if you like games with a bit of a toy factor, Gizmos delivers.

Game Play – Basics

Players take turns in a clockwise order, performing one of four actions:

File: File 1 Gizmo from the Display Area.
Pick: Pick 1 Energy of your choice from the Energy Row.
Build: Build 1 Gizmo from the Display Area or from your Archive.
Research: Draw Gizmo cards from 1 of the facedown Level Decks and choose
1 to File or Build.

It’s a pretty simple setup. Play continues until one player has either aquired their 16th Gizmo, or their 4th level 3 Gizmo, triggering the final round. But what makes Gizmos really fun is the engine building that comes out of the game creating some crazy combos.

Game Play – Advanced Tactics

The secret sauce of Gizmos is the way that one action can trigger a bunch of actions. These chain reactions, with one Gizmo triggering another, allows players to set up big turns, score a lot of points, and purchase other Gizmos that seem very expensive. Even better, when you take your turn you get to choose the order that your Gizmos fire off.

One example of a mega combo can be that Sally decides to do the Build action. She chooses a Red card (there is a thematic name for Red, but we will get to that), discarding one Red marble. Based on her other Gizmos Sally is allowed to perform an addition Pick action. Sally picks a Red marble from the general supply. This fires off Sally’s other ability of taking a random marble from the supply when picking a Red marble.

And once you have multiple Gizmos built, you may find yourself firing off multiple actions every turn. One thing to keep in mind is that while there is no limit to the number of Gizmos that may be activated, each Gizmo can only activated once per turn. For some players, you may want to “tap” an activated Gizmo by turning it 90 degrees.

Theme

Gizmos has great table presence, but the theme is pasted on. At no point are you going to call the marbles Heat (Red), Electric (Yellow), Atomic (Blue), or Battery (Black). They are simple Red, Yellow, Blue, and Black.

Replay Value

I still play Splendor. It’s still one of my favourite games. But others feel that after a certain point it gets samey. And while Gizmos offers 108 different Gizmos, most of them do the same types of things. “Pick” Gizmos allow you to grab an extra marble. “Convert” allows you to use a marble as two marbles, or a certain colour of marble as wild. Build, File or Research lets you perform one of the other actions. So after a while this will leave you either feeling you’ve seen all the game has to offer, or feeling like you know what the cards do and wanting to see how you can combo things together.

Over All Impression.

I’ve mentioned Splendor more than once previously, because Gizmos does offer a lot of what Splendor does. Both play in a short amount of time, with really simple rules. Both have you building a tableau that makes future purchases easier. But what really shines in Gizmos is the combos. I often find myself super engaged on another player’s turn not because I want to see what Marbles or cards they are taking away from me, but because I want to see all the combos they fire off on their turn. If you like to engine build and setup combos, I think you will really like Gizmos even if you found yourself tiring of Splendor after a couple of plays.

Gizmos is the kind of game that will constantly hit the table for me, with different types of games, and had earned it’s spot on my game shelf.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
5 out of 5 gamers thought this review was helpful
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Go to the Dominion page
9
9 of 9 gamers thought this was helpful
Cama891 {Avid Gamer} Feb 4th, 2019
“Masterpiece!”

One of the best deck-building games ever. Easy to learn, easy to carry, hard to master. It’s a peefect game to introduce new players. Every match will be different and its replaying value offers thousand options and choices. Also Expert players could find new strategies in every single play. Althogh its multiple qualities, Dominion is a card game and like all card games is characterized with a percentage of luck that Can determine who finally wins. Expansion aren’t Mandatoriccio, but of you like base game you Will buy them. I suggest Seaside and Intrigue (the second one is also a standalone game).

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
9 out of 9 gamers thought this review was helpful
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6
Platinum Supporter
Thunderstone Fan
I play blue
Go to the Acquire page
9
5 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Jon {Avid Gamer} Jan 31st, 2019
“New Version Still a Great Game”

For a history of this great game, check out the Acquire page on Wikipedia. It also gives a good overview, which I decided not to repeat in this review.

I’ve played the cardboard-tile version with the 9×12 grid a few times and loved it. So, I decided to try the newer version that has plastic pieces and a smaller 10×10 grid (the one listed on Amazon here).

The new version plays the same except for a few main changes:
1) Uses plastic tiles instead of cardboard tiles. These plastic tiles stack onto the spaces of the plastic grid in a way that prevents them from moving (a nice feature). The plastic tiles also stand up on their own like dominoes instead of needing scrabble-style tile trays.
2) The size of the grid is a smaller 10×10 instead of 9×12. I liked the larger size of the original better, but the smaller size is fine – it just leads to a shorter game.
3) Instead of only a Majority and Minority share holder for mergers, the new game has Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary bonuses. This is great for 6-player games. For 2-player games, you only use the Primary/Secondary bonuses.

CONS: The main problem with the new version is that the numbers/letters on the plastic gray grid are almost impossible to see. After I painted the numbers white, it was much better (dry brushing works). I also wish that the the grid was labeled like a spreadsheet with letters for the columns and rows for the numbers.

I’ve played the new version mostly with 2 players so far, and it works well as a 2-player game.

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
5 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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Go to the Risk: Legacy page
 
Man O' Kent {Avid Gamer} Jan 30th, 2019
“Worth Risking Another Look”

I think that Risk Legacy deserves more attention than it has received. Pandemic Legacy Season 1 claimed the BGG number one spot and started the fashion for attaching a legacy element to every game for the next 12 months. I would argue that so far the two most effective and satisfying games to employ the legacy format are Risk and Pandemic Season 1, and I wouldn’t swear to which is the most effective. Despite this every gaming shop I’ve been in for the last few years has copies of both Pandemic seasons, Seafall and Charterstone, while few or none of them have copies of Risk Legacy. 

I don’t know if this is due to childhood nightmares of never ending struggles over Europe, a dislike of modern gamers towards traditional family favourites or something more fundamental. I will say though that the game play in modern versions of Risk has been heavily overhauled. Unlike re-skins of Cluedo and Monopoly new versions of Risk are newer, better games worth looking at by any modern gamer. 

Risk as a game makes the most sense of almost any to have the legacy format applied, after all few events are more likely to permanently change the face of the world map than international war. Cities being founded and nuclear weapons dropped leading to fundamental changes makes absolute sense. Furthermore, in the excellent Pandemic Legacy series the scars and alterations effecting the map are largely caused by non-player directed actions, they mark more often than not the places where players failed. In Risk Legacy every change and mark is the direct result of a player action not reaction or inaction, every change is someone’s choice.

I know more people who own Pandemic Legacy Season 2 than Risk Legacy, which considering that Risk is cheaper and has been available for longer is peculiar to say the very least. If your hoping for Pandemic Season 3 or desperate to see Betrayal Legacy and don’t yet own Risk Legacy I strongly suggest you seek it out.        

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
3 out of 4 gamers thought this review was helpful
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3
Pick a Favorite LGS
Go to the Viticulture page
9
6 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Pentegarn {Avid Gamer} Jan 19th, 2019
“A worker placement almost everyone can enjoy”

While I wouldn’t say this is my personal favorite worker placement game, I would say it is an objective worker placement masterpiece that most avid worker placement fans will enjoy

Gameplay/Replay

As a family running a vineyard you use your workers through the year to grow various kinds of grapes, turn them into wine and fill orders with the various people looking for certain kinds of wine of certain ages. The game is played over multiple rounds where you go through 4 seasons doing things throughout each season to help make your vineyard the best. You start by placing your rooster meeple on the turn order track to get a reward, the better the reward the later in the round you go. In the summer you choose to build improvements, plant grapes, get grapes to plant, entertain visitors or give a tour. Fall gives you a summer or winter visitor then in the winter phase you can harvest, make wine, entertain winter visitors, hire an additional worker, or fill an order. The catch to all this is you only have so many workers to spread through the entire year and a summer worker cannot be played in the winter (barring certain visitor cards changing this of course). Play continues till someone scores 20 then the year is played out and the player with the most points wins. With all the different visitor cards you will find a new way to play every time.

The Bad

Very little to talk about here. I guess if you hate crass jokes about a word that is a synonym to rooster then you might get irritated when people say “ok it’s wake up phase grab your roosters” and all the people as immature as I am start giggling. Also the theme is a little dry (Ha! Get it?!) but I found myself enjoying the game theme and all.

As worker placements go you can’t go wrong with this one. Get the essential edition though it really improved the original game by leaps and bounds

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
6 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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3
Pick a Favorite LGS
Go to the Artifacts, Inc. page
6
6 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Pentegarn {Avid Gamer} Jan 19th, 2019
“Solid Dice Placement game”

Artifacts Inc. is a nice dice placement that packs into an easy to carry box. Good for trips where you might be looking to kill an hour

Gameplay/Replay

In Artifacts Inc. you race to get to 20 points first and then have the most points after all players have taken an even number of turns. Players do this by gathering various kinds of artifacts like fossils or idols or gems or parchment. Each player starts with 4 cards that give them 3 different locations and 3 dice per turn to roll. The 3 locations give players 2 expeditions and a place to purchase upgrades to their artifacts for hire company. Money can be made by selling artifacts in amounts to various museums or by selling them to a public space where you can get 1 dollar per artifact with a bonus per extra unique type you sell. This money can be used to buy upgraded buildings which give you points. All points are tracked as you buy which can make the game seem to end sooner than expected, but it is often a tight race where having majority in things sold to a museum (the only end game bonus) can make all the difference. Every game the buildings are randomized so each play is different, though the dive mechanic will remain the same every game.

The Bad

This game can be prone to AP for some as you get more and more to do with upgrades giving yo u more dice, rerolls, or the ability to increase/decrease a die roll. More options means more thinking about what the best move is. Also it isn’t the most aesthetically pleasing game yo have ever looked at and at times you will not have enough cubes (you can use a site that sells cubes to fix this however.)

All that said for what it costs MSRP wise this is a good little middle of the road dice placement game

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
6 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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Go to the Bananagrams page
10
6 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
Scott Hayes {Strategy Gamer} Jan 10th, 2019
“Our favorite word game”

This game is great for a quick play (10-20 minutes depending on your skill) that is different every time based on the letter tiles that you draw. Form your own “Scrabble” board in a race against your opponent. Every new word must connect with a previous word, so you must choose whether to go for the simple words for time or figure out longer words to give you more options later. My wife and I enjoy playing together after a meal. If you like word games, this is definitely for you!

VN:R_U [1.9.22_1171]
6 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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