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4
Go to the Love Letter: Batman page
8
maguano Apr 24th, 2017
“great family time killer”

great game for those moments when you need to distract one sibling from fighting another. true story. also a great game to play when you are waiting to walk the kids to the bus. if you know what love letter is, then this review will do nothing to sway you to buy it. if you don’t then there are way better reviews out there than this.

16 (?) cards and a bunch of batman tokens. nothing major, but the simplicity is where this shines,

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1 out of 3 gamers thought this review was helpful
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5
AEG fan
Tasty Minstrel Games Fan
I Play This One a LOT
Go to the Star Wars: Imperial Assault page
9
B. Chereaux {Avid Gamer} Apr 24th, 2017
“Star Wars Skirmish”

As of the writing of this review, our group has not tackled a campaign yet. So, this will be about the skirmish options instead. For background, I enjoy Risk, Memoir 44, Mage Wars, MTG, Battle Cry, and a few others.
The skirmish mode in a word: Elegant. The four rule books that come in the base game may appear a bit daunting at first, but underneath is a rich and well balanced world full of all of your favorite characters and a wealth of different objective types and environments to play in. As with any game, there are certain key words to learn, but they are simple enough if you have played any other game with its own language. All of the characters seem well balanced, and the ability to build your own team of characters and command cards makes this a rich world with great replay value.
As expected from fantasy flight, the components are top notch. There are custom dice and highly detailed miniatures. The cards are all of sturdy FF quality. My only gripe is that the black border around the games tiles will wear in time and could detract from the absolutely gorgeous artwork.
The skirmishes are played in a series of rounds with the initiative alternating each round. Line of sight is simple and easy to measure and the attack of each character is fairly well balanced ad personalized (I.E. a small pistol has decent damage but short range, some rifles can have more damage at close range or good accuracy at far range, and melee characters are brutal). Games take an hour or less once you learn the basics of the game, so you have a chance to play with different factions and scenarios.
My only complaint is the organization of the base game box, which is none. Not even Talisman-like attempt by FF to arrange all the components.
Overall, a great experience with a wealth of theme and replay value.

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4 out of 4 gamers thought this review was helpful
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Go to the Twilight Imperium (3ed) page
10
3 of 9 gamers thought this was helpful
Rampillidarn Apr 18th, 2017
“Amazing!!”

Tough learning curve but fantastic once you learn, even now I am contriving and planning for our groups next encounter!

Space Soap Opera, dark devices, and flat out shock tend to describe some of the occurrences during our play sessions. Never played any game the same as previous due to the massive amount of changes that occur during each round. I must be honest and mention that our average game time (base set only) tends to be on the 5.5 – 6 hour time frame.

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3 out of 9 gamers thought this review was helpful
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2
Go to the AquaSphere page
3
4 of 6 gamers thought this was helpful
God Keizer {Casual Gamer} Apr 18th, 2017
“Convoluted”

We all know the board setup of AquaSphere and if you don’t you should watch some reviews. Problem is however that youtube reviewers are so positive. Well I didn’t like it.
From the first move you get the feeling that the game grabs you by the throat and it doesn’t let go until the end. And not in a good way. There are so many things that you are not allowed to do. Furthermore it is so hard to plan ahead because a lot of things are random.
An example is the resource Time. It’s hard to get time to achieve something, and then when you score you can’t pass the 25/50/75 point mark because you have to sacrifice a black stone. Why?
Then there are octopuses, you get 1-3-6 points for removing them, but you need to build your own ship so it can actually hold 3 octopuses, and if you end the turn on a hex with octopuses you get penalty points. Why?
You can program a robot to perform a role but only some are available at any point, and destroying one gives you time – why?
Pushing robots away so that only 1 of each color remains – why?

The game has a theme but it tries to implement too much, losing everything.

Furthermore, explaining the game takes 20+ minutes before you can even consider making a move, and the game just takes too long.
Some may like it.

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4 out of 6 gamers thought this review was helpful
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3
Critic - Level 2
Go to the Alhambra: The Dice Game page
6
7 of 7 gamers thought this was helpful
Michael Anino {Social Gamer} Apr 8th, 2017
“Base Game Review”

So I played this the other night at a local Game Night and I wasn’t that impressed.
It’s a pretty good dice game, on that I’d probably like to play again, but with the Base Game rules that we were playing it’s kind of just… a dice game with very little “Alhambra” to speak of in game play.

Also: We had 3 players and the game took almost 2 hours. Which seems ridiculous. The play time on the box says “60 Minutes” and it’s a 3-6 player game, so we were working with the lowest number of players.

So, what is the game? And what is with that previous sentence? That’s not how sentences work!

Anyway:
On your turn you get three chances to roll the 9 dice. You can stop rolling at any time, or you can push your luck.
You’re trying to roll matching symbols that match columns on the board. If you can get the highest score on a column you get “Building Points” as a reward and a chance to earn Victory Points during the Scoring Phases that take place after Rounds 1, 3 and 5.
The “Columns” that you can place in have three spots for each number, depending on when you successfully roll that number. So if you roll it on the first attempt you get the Far Left and if you get it on the third roll you get the Far Right. If people tie, the person who got there in the fewest rolls gets the better reward. If you roll 4 Red on your Third Roll and someone else has already placed on that color for that many dice rolls you get bumped down to the next available space(3 Red, 1 Roll in this case(if it were empty). This happens regardless of when you rolled those dice, so if you roll First Roll: 2 Red, Second Roll: 2 Red, Third Roll: 0 Red you still get the 4 Red, 3rd Roll space. Sometimes it’s worth taking the risk, but in our experience we found that it was better to just stop when you were ahead.

Depending on the number of players you’ll place up to 5 tokens(fewer are placed with more players. But like I said we had 3 players, so we placed all 5 each turn) to indicate what you’re going for during the “Rolling Phase”(we’ll call it). After everyone has placed their tokens you give out the rewards. First Place gets to choose either Two Building Points or One Building Point and the Bonus Token. Second Place gets what First Place didn’t choose.
Bonus Tokens can be Immediate Victory Points or Special Power tiles, like being able to use an extra die which always shows the face of your choice, or being First Player. There’s a bunch of powers, and they don’t all seem amazing. But this is off of a single play and I’m bad at games.

After awarding the Building Points if it’s a Scoring Round you give out Victory Points. These increase in the same way they do in normal Alhambra.

And you do that until there’s been 5 rounds.

It’s a decent game. I liked the “Push Your Luck” element of it and I liked the way that even a relatively bad roll can get you a fairly good place on the board.

But: When I play an Alhambra game I want to play something with the tiles and with the strategy of placing those tiles being very important.
This has the scoring of Alhambra, but that’s about it.

There are rules for how to set up the game to play with the tiles. But we didn’t have the base game with us, so we just played the “Dice Game” rules.

It’s a pretty good dice game, but it took WAY TOO LONG for what it was. Maybe it’s because we were talking while playing. Maybe it was because we were playing for the first time, but it was a two hour dice game that did not offer you things to do when it’s not your turn.

It’s still a 6/10 though. I’d really like to get a chance to try the rules where you use the row to collect and place tiles.

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7 out of 7 gamers thought this review was helpful
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4
Gamer - Level 3
Intermediate Grader
Go to the Village page
9
7 of 7 gamers thought this was helpful
Balder {Avid Gamer} Apr 7th, 2017
“Fun, family game, with nice strategic value”

COMPONENTS
Components are of very nice quality. The game includes the main board, farm board and coloured meeples for each player. There are wooden cubes for each influence type, cardboard trading tiles, etc… Anyway, the quality of components is great!

DESIGN
The game has really nice design. The cubes are, just that, cubes, and don’t expect too much on that front, but images are really beautiful.

RULES
In Village, a player controls a family in it’s struggle to reach the top through multiple generations. Yes, this game’s resources are different types of influence and TIME! Pretty much, anything you do, costs time, and when clock ticks, a player needs to “kill” one of his oldest members. But, fear not, even in death, many members bring fame to the family, because they are often remembered in Village Chronicle as first members of council, best craftsmen, famous travelers, etc…
At the beginning of each turn, green bag is used to take influence cubes specified by number of players, and those are randomly set on different village parts. Then, players, take a cube and do action tied to the place a cube was on. These include trading, traveling, crafting, making new family members, rising in church/council…
The game ends when either whole chronicle or graveyard (if there is not enough space in chronicle of that type) is full. Points are tallied and winner is the one who has the most!

FUN
Village is a VERY, VERY fun game… On each turn, there are so many actions the player can do, and each of those actions is very unique. During each session, a player will be confronted with tough choices that will greatly influence his later turns. And if you love a little bit of tension, church mass is a very fun mechanic, where player sends his family member into church, and at the end of each round 4 meeples are randomly drawn from black bag and put into church hierarchy. If you don’t love luck driven mechanics, you can (naturally) buy place in the mass 🙂

REPLAYABILITY
Main random element of this game (and, randomness is really important for replay value) is mostly tied to influence cubes that are put on different actions. This will not dramatically change anyone’s luck, but will definitely change how each game is played. Also, trading tiles are random, and will influence your crafting decisions. Anyway, this game has surprisingly nice replayability.

OVERALL
Aside from having great quality components with nice design, the Village is a smart, and beautiful game with many tough choices, few very interesting and novel minor mechanics, that is not too hard to learn and is thematically great for families.
9

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7 out of 7 gamers thought this review was helpful
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4
Gamer - Level 3
Intermediate Grader
Go to the Agricola page
10
6 of 7 gamers thought this was helpful
Balder {Avid Gamer} Apr 7th, 2017
“Very heavy worker placement game, that I absolutely adore!”

COMPONENTS
Nice boards and average quality cards (that are not used as much as in other games, so it’s not that bad) and many wooden pieces to represent vegetables, wheat, animals, etc… High quality components, but could be better.

DESIGN
Cards and boards are nice, clear and thematic. Wooden pieces are, wooden pieces, this is an euro game, so don’t expect too much on that side. But it is enough.

RULES
Each player starts the game with 2 actions, representet by farmer and his wife. For each action, a player chooses one of the possible ones from the action board and places his worker, disabling any other player from taking it in this turn. On each turn, new action on action board is revealed, unlocking new possibilites; like taking new types of animals to the farm, having a baby (to have more actions on subsequent turns), and so on. During the whole game, you need to make sure to have enough food, and in the same time build and collect everything, to be able to accumulate as many points as possible.

FUN
This game is heavy. Apart from being full of stuff and literally heavy in the box, it is very heavy for the players. The rules are not that hard to learn, but the game is extremely hard to master. You will constantly have problems with wanting too many things, and being able to do so little on your turn. In the end, you need to have as many things in as many different categories to make more points and win the game. This is definitely the game that will make you run for everything, and will heavily penalize those who don’t.
And that said, I really, really love this game. When you finish the game with nice number of points (even if you didn’t win), you will feel rewarded. It can sometimes be too heavy, and that might impact the fun factor.

REPLAYABILITY
Apart from being hard to master, the game has some different actions on action board (randomized before each play) depending on the number of players, it also has few different deck of cards (interactive, advanced…), and each deck is huge, and only a small fraction is played on each game. Replayability is literally FANTASTIC!

OVERALL
This was one of my favourite games when I bought it, and it is still one of the best that I every played. It has nice components and rewarding gameplay with great replayability. But keep in mind that it is a heavy game, and some people don’t like that.
10

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6 out of 7 gamers thought this review was helpful
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4
Gamer - Level 3
Intermediate Grader
Go to the Ticket to Ride: Europe page
9
9 of 9 gamers thought this was helpful
Balder {Avid Gamer} Apr 7th, 2017
“A must have classic”

COMPONENTS
Game consists of a large board (showing the map of Europe), one very large deck of train cards, smaller deck of destination (task) cards, plastic trains in different colours for each player and wooden token for score keeping. As is a custom for euro games, score is kept on a track around the map. Everything is of very nice quality.

DESIGN
Completely in theme and very clear. There is absolutely nothing bad I can say about the design.

RULES
At the beginning of the game each player gets 4 (1 large and 3 standard destination cards) and chooses two to keep. During a turn, player can either pick two (or one if he picks up a revealed locomotive card) revealed or hidden train cards, connect two cities or choose new destination cards. This goes on until one player spends all his trains. Players score points for each connection, but also from finishing destination cards; but for each non-finished destination card at the end of game, player loses that many points. There are also 10 additional points for the player with the longest road.
Additional Rules to original Ticket to Ride include ferries (you need to use Locomotive or two to build connection), tunnels (you might need to spend additional cards to build connection) and stations (you may use other players connection for your own destinations cards).

FUN
Ticket to Ride is a classic, and not without reason. It is a beautiful, simple family game loved by so many people around the world. It has it’s dose of luck and strategic thinking, but it is never too heavy for the players, it plays fairly quick, and it has trains, and who doesn’t like trains?!

REPLAYABILITY
As simple game as it is, it has to sacrifice a fair amount of replay value, so I don’t recommend playing it for too many consecutive nights. On the other hand, as popular as it is, it has a nice amount of different expansions, that can help with this issue…

OVERALL
This game is a must have for every board gamer. Apart from being a classic, it is also a great game for introducing someone to a hobby, fantastic for lazy nights where you don’t want to activate your brain cells too much and completely safe for younger children to play…
8.5

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9 out of 9 gamers thought this review was helpful
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4
Gamer - Level 3
Intermediate Grader
Go to the Bang! page
7
6 of 8 gamers thought this was helpful
Balder {Avid Gamer} Apr 7th, 2017
“Nice party game with elimination problem”

COMPONENTS
Very nice quality cards, tokens and boards (we rarely use tokens and boards, though).

DESIGN
Design is pretty nice, colours are light, font is very much in style of western, everything is very clear. I like the design of the game.

RULES
There are 3 decks of cards. There are Roles, Characters and Action cards. Each player takes a role character in secret (depending on the number of players, there are different numbers of outlaws, deputies and one renegade and sheriff). Each role has a different win condition, so Sheriff and Deputy will win if all outlaws and renegade are dead, Outlaws win when Sheriff is dead, and Renegade must be the last alive with Sheriff and kill him to win the game. Sheriff is the only character that is visible to other players.
Every player also draws a character with special abilities and different number of hit points.
During a turn, a player draws two action cards and plays any number from his hand (but is normally allowed to play only 1 BANG! card per his turn). There are classic instant action cards and equipment cards that have a lasting effect after they are played. Almost actions are represented by few icons and are very easily understood.

FUN
BANG! is a party game, and as such it is mostly a very fun game. But, it has 2 pretty big downsides… First, it is a game that IMO requires at least 5 people to be really playable, and secondly it can last for too long, and the game that eliminates players should not be like that. Even worse is the scenario where you can die on the first turn, before even having a chance to play…

REPLAYABILITY
It should not be played all the time. It is a nice game for those sessions where there are enough players, and you really need to relax your brains… But if there are too many of those situations, I guess you should get few games for such occasions. Replayability is ok, but not great.

OVERALL
BANG! is a nice game, fun for 5 players, but have a problem of dragging along for too long… especially with more than 7 players, where the risk of dying in the first turn (before having a chance to play) is even greater. Replayability is also not too great…
7

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6 out of 8 gamers thought this review was helpful
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4
Gamer - Level 3
Intermediate Grader
Go to the San Juan page
8
Balder {Avid Gamer} Apr 7th, 2017
“Fun and simple gateway game”

COMPONENTS
The game consists of a deck of cards of average quality. There are also 5 role cards and trading cards printed on the cardboard.
The box also includes a pencil and a nice pad to keep scores.

DESIGN
Nothing special. It looks fine if you take it in its theme, but it is not great.

RULES
At the beginning of the turn, Governor (first player) selects the role he wishes to play. Role is actually a type of action that is played by all players (except Prospector, that is played only by the player who chose it), but the player who chose the role gets its benefits. At the beginning of each turn, the Governor token is sent to the next player.
Actions include building, producing, selling and taking cards… And cards are everything in this game, they are buildings, money, goods. So, i.e. a player has 4 cards in his hand, he chooses to build a building (from his hand) costing 4, he will take a Builder role (which gives him the benefit of building at -1 cost) and will discard other 3 cards to pay for it.
A producer will put goods (cards from the top of the deck) under his production buildings, and a trader will sell these goods for the amount depending on trading cards and goods type.
Anyway, once any player has 12 buildings, the game ends and total points are tallied.

FUN
I really like San Juan. It is a very simple and fun game with a nice amount of strategy. Number of cards drawn are so huge that luck is really at the minimum, though luck on trading cards can greatly influence your plans. Anyway, it is a fast, easy to learn game, that is actually great for 2 players.

REPLAYABILITY
I had San Juan for many years in my collection, and it is a game that was brought to the table many times. But never for too many times in a row. Anyway, my personal feeling is that game has a nice replayability, but should not be exploited for too long…

OVERALL
Very, very fun and simple game, with (probably) nice replay value, but unfortunately packed in average quality components and with bland design.
8

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1 out of 1 gamers thought this review was helpful
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