We picked up a secondhand Blokus a while ago, turned out there were 3 yellow pieces missing. A householder picked up another secondhand Blokus, only missing one piece (a blue one). Turns out the game was released in two different sizes… the blue piece from the first set is adequate in the second, not perfect. We played twice (me, Oldest, and my parents-in-law – I won twice, both times close. Oldest was sad at losing the first game, and not really much happier about coming second in the second game.
We’re aiming to have a game night soon, and I a game I Kickstarted showed up in the mail, a few days ago. I still have some Kickstarted games I’ve not tried yet.
I got into KickStarter because of a game I already play. I’ve mentioned the old Star Trek CCG that I’ve been into since 1995 at the latest (it started 1994). After a while, the game got rather complicated, and the company started with a Second Edition (with backwards-compatible cards that further complicated First Edition). One of the former 2e designers, Michael Keller, posted on the boards that he was trying to publish a board game he’d designed.
The game was City Hall. It failed when Keller tried to self-publish it through KickStarter. I actually missed it that first time round. The second time round, a game publishing company tried to Kickstart it, and I umped in on that, but it didn’t meet its funding goal either, but the publisher assumed some of the responsibility for that, and they promised to try one more time.
That one more time, City Hall was paired with another Keller game, Captains of Industry.
City Hall has a political theme, which has made it a bit difficult to get people interested in. What I liked about it (conceptually, I’m still trying to get someone to play it with me), is managing a bunch of different kinds of resources (money, influence, popularity and so on), and carefully using them: spending some of one to get some of another, strategically building to benefit yourself but to try not to benefit your opponents too much, and being in competition for particular roles, and trying hard to get one, or look like you’re trying hard to get one but really trying to get someone else to take it instead.
Captains Of Industry also has resource management and building, and looks a few shades more complicated. The theme is industrial rather than political. The difficulty with getting people to play this one, is that there is rather a lot that you need to take in all at once. I think once you’ve been through it a time or two, it’ll be as straightforward as something like Power Grid, it’s just a bit daunting.
The ones that just arrived are Bomb Squad and Bomb Squad Academy. Bomb Squad, you have a limited time to program a robot to go into a building, defuse bombs and rescue hostages (and sometimes unlock doors along the way). You can’t see the cards you have to program the robot with, and have to rely on hints from other players. Reports are that the game is very immersive and intense.
Bomb Squad Academy got thrown in on the same Kickstarter, a similarly-themed game, but with different gameplay. More a card game, you are trying to defuse bombs, but you can hinder other players, and cutting the wrong wire will bring you closer to a big bang.
We opened all these games this evening, and looked through the pieces and enough of the rules to get a feel of what the games were about. There were (positive) comments about the quality of the components.
We also opened one other game I Kickstarted, but this time one I’ve actually played (once). Doom And Bloom Survival! was developed by a husband-and-wife team Doc Bones and Nurse Amy, of the Doom And Bloom podcast (they guested on The Survival Podcast a few times, and Jack promoted their Kickstarter attempt for this game over there, which is how I heard about it).
In the center of the board is a city, and you have to escape, scout some settlements around, pick up a certain amount of food, weapons, fuel, medical supplies and survivors, and return to the city to pick up your family and take them to your final destination settlement. But you can be attacked by bandits or encounter random events, that can set you back. If I recall correctly, the latter could also help you. And you may need to expend food, fuel or weapons for various reasons, and some of it is balancing between getting all that you need, and getting ahead in the game.
My mother-in-law, who was looking through the games with me, thought she might like to try this one. Better brush up on the rules (for all of them really, just in case).
Than there’s always other options. Dominion is a good one…