Brief Board Game Reviews #3!

At least I think it’s number three…eh I can always edit it later. Hello! Yes, Board in the City are just a few weeks away from opening and we’re going through the games we have to narrow down the ones we’re going to have in our inventory. First off a bit of business out of the way, we’re going to be having a launch party on the 4th March was it going to run from 730 to 930 in the evening. Tickets are £7.50 per person. You’ll get a free drink, a chance to taste samples of the food that’s going to be on the menu, the opportunity to participate in a murder mystery game and the ability to just check out the venue, meet us and the rest of the volunteers and other gamers who show up! At time of writing I think there are about 70 tickets left so if you’d like to come better get them sooner or later. If you’d like more information about the event then go ahead and check it out on Facebook here.

So here are some of the brief reviews of games I’ve played recently. As a disclaimer my views are my own and not representative of Board in the City as a whole.  Alright then.

First up there’s a game called Freya’s Folly in which the players take control of Dwarven mining guilds aiming to collect jewels to then build into necklaces. The board, at first glance, looks like a maze but actually it’s just a mine that leads to different caverns holding various jewels. On a player’s turn there are a number of actions they can take, which include moving miners into the mines, taking objectives, completing objectives etc. There are a couple of clever mechanics in the game. One of them is a way for the game to end. Each player has a certain number of dwarfs, and when you complete an objective you do so by sending a dwarf off to market, and are unable to use that dwarf for the rest of the game. When a player has used up all their dwarfs the game is going to end. Another way for the game to end is for all the pieces of Bringasemen’s (the rather fetching lady featured on the box) necklace to be finished.

The other mechanism that intrigued me was how movement worked. In the mine the dwarves can move between lanterns, but if there are dwarves in the way you can leapfrog them, so an opponent can actually help you, or you can create a chain effect where your miners are leaping over each other.

The rulebook is pretty clear and it’s only about two pages long, which is always a nice thing to come across (especially when you open Imperial Assault and see four thick rule books aahh!). It’s a pretty straightforward game once you get around to it, and offers some interesting choices, like whether to send all your miners in quickly to get the jewels or hang back a little bit and wait for other players to go into the mine, then use them to leap frog through and steal the jewels! I also like how the closer you get to winning the fewer dwarves you have to choose from. This one is pretty good.

Mercante is a game in the Tempest series (of which I have played none so I didn’t bother reading the flavour text). It’s an auction game where players take on the roles of merchants, trying to fulfil contracts and trade goods for the best price. I’m not usually a fan of economic games because my maths skills are dreadful, but this is fun and has a few cut-throat elements that I enjoy. The scoring is really tight and victory points are a precious commodity, making for a pretty tense game. There are events that can throw things into whack and I really enjoyed the concept of the contracts. When you get them you get paid for them, which can be a big boost, but if you don’t manage to fulfil them they’re going to cost you minus points at the end of the game. It’s good to spot what kind of things the other players are going for to try and drive up the price of goods, and then manipulate the market so they don’t get as much money as they were expecting. Surprised that I enjoyed this one as much ais I did!

Redshirts is a take that game in which players are attempting to get their redshirts killed by going on missions, but other players can make it easier for them to succeed. I don’t like Munchkin or Fluxx and this game combines the worst of them. It took about half an hour to play but it felt like an eternity but I wish that I had been a red shirt and died. I’m a huge trekkie but even the humor wasn’t even to salvage any ounce of enjoyment from the game. To top it all off the symbology on the cards is just a mess. There’s far too much of it and it’s not intuitive so it takes a while to come to terms with what they all mean.

Legendary: Marvel is at this point my favourite game, but I’d never tried the DC Deck-Building game until now. I’d heard much criticism for it not being thematic, and it’s not really given that you can recruit villains and other things to play. It’s also stripped down compared to other deckbuilders as well, considering that there’s only one form of currency in the game. But it’s quick and fast and I like that there’s an element of PvP in it as well. The artwork is really cool, and since each player takes on the role of a hero there’s a bit of variation into how each player plays as well. So yeah, I liked it.

And I think that’s all I’m going to talk about this time, but I have Dead of Winter to play soon and I’m REALLY looking forward to that.


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