Constantinopolis Craving

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Constonopolis is like a grown up version of Puerto Rico (we’re all grown ups at Thur night gaming as you know). We’ve spoken about it before (insofar as I’ve spoken about it).  It was the second game of the night so it was like the secondary target in a Flight Sim, didn’t really matter, the main game was played and we could all land happy.

It is worker placement plain and simple. Last Thursdays flavour and it’s not bad at all. I’ve said it before and I’ll say if again (and probably again if allowed) if you haven’t played Puerto Rico you are missing out. If you’ve played a LOT of Puerto Rico then Constonopolis is a fine vapor pen like replacement.

Constonopolis (I’ve said it three times now) has got pretty much all the elements of Puerto but also a bit more. Trading (which I’m not so sure about). Mini missions in the shape of ships and buying of goods as opposed to just growing them.

It doesn’t have colonists to power stuff but that’s not a big loss by any means.

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Myself and the group have played a lot of PR and almost solved the game at this stage, so this is new and fresh. I haven’t figured out one way of winning (with this and most games) It’s quite possible to go several routes to gain victory points and as far as I could see each of them was valid.

There’s cock blockery a plenty in the form of bidding and grabbing positions before others do and more importantly overcharging others for certain resources.  Worker placement tends to be awfully polite (well with other groups I assume), lacking the “HA! I just invaded and ruined your epic plan, Squirt some tears punk ” moments.  It’s all a bit more subtle but it’s no less fun for that.

Squeaking ahead on the score or cashing in a bonus and winning at the end never gets old. This is a solid game that gives warm hugs. It’s definitely worth playing but if you haven’t tried Puerto Rico I recommend you start with it first

We had already played one worker placement on the night so this was like a second happy meal in one day.  I’m glad I got this game (It was a swapsee for something else) and I’m going to play it again.  Try and stop me

Huzzah!

Vic

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25, 26, 27

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Psssttt!! Want to make some money?  Go have a look at the game Ascending Empires on ebay.  Here use this handy link on BGG

http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/37919/ascending-empires

$200 for the game in the states, €15 in France.  Buy low sell high (send me half the difference as a finders fee)

When I got Ascending empires as a swapsee I had thought it was a standard enough 4x game  (Expand, Explore, 2 other exes), I was a bit surprised when I found out the movement around the board was controlled by flicking the pieces.  Having played one game I was hooked, this is genius and all games should have a flicking mechanic.  Or NOT.

It’s been a while since I’d played it but I remembered how to setup the board so it was all go after that.  In AE you start with a handful of troops and two small ships. The board consists of a scattering of random colored planets (facedown) and you flick your ships across the uneven surface and if you get in orbit of a planet you can land your troops and take it over.  Once established on a planet you can build colonies and cities (adds defense and bonus points at end game) and research centers.  These are key and allow you extra abilities and options depending on which tech branch you pursue

There’s a finite amount of planets so inevitably (i.e. after turn one) conflict ensues (much to the chagrin of the players) and planets are sieged, ships destroyed and empires humbled.  What’s lovely about it is unlike most map based conquest games where it’s often trench warfare, due to the flick mechanic it’s quite possible to sneak interdiction attacks into the heart of your enemies empire.

Tech plays a big part in this game, getting ahead will give you major benefits.

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There are four different colours of tech which correspond to planet colours.  Each branch does different things like increase the amount of ships and troops you can have, how many flicks you get during movement, allow you to build a bigger battleship craft and so on.  To tech up you first need to conquer a planet of the appropriate color and build a research station on it then research the tech to move up.  To get to a particular level of tech you need to own that many planets of the corresponding colours with research stations on them.  A Tall order when everyone is fighting for resources.

Getting to the fourth level of any tech colour grants some awesome powers.  in my case I teched up brown and could teleport to unowned planets nilly willy.  It was like having moles in your garden.

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The game for a map conquest is relatively quick.  Turns shoot around (pardon the pun) and there’s practically no down time.

I like this game a lot.  I’ve only played it a few times and usually only 1v1 so with extra players (it takes up to four) it gets really interesting.  Now it does have it’s faults, the board is notoriously poor in design.  It’s a set of jigsaw pieces that should form a flat surface for flicking around but it doesn’t.  There was more than one curse when a ship careered off a joint.  It’s certainly not a show stopper and it makes the game a little bit more crazy golf than billiards.   No-one really complained as everyone was working on the same playing field.

The game is simple to play, the rules are all contained on your play board and it’s very elegant.  There are no grey areas or what ifs, everything is covered.  I’m surprised this game didn’t make a bigger splash and that it’s out of print, I would have loved to see more games like it but who knows, games have a habit of reappearing.  As it stands it’s a tasty little game and if you can get your your hands on it go for it.  It’s a goodie

Oh lest I forget i won.  27 points, my opponents scored 26 and 25 points 🙂

it will be at Knavecon IV

Huzzah!

Vic

 

 

 

 

Outdoor Thur – Thur – Being a Drax Reporte

Since there’s no sign of the wasps it seemed appropriate to play HIVE

Hive is very neat little chess like game, but with fewer pieces and fairly simple rules.  It’s also very portable and robust.  Perfect little game for a caravan or tent (although these are not essential), great one to bring on holidays out foreign and sit out on your balcony with along with a drink and bad light

hive-commercial

 

The theme is very well done, it’s all about a swarm of insects trying to surround each others queen whilst protecting their own.  So capture the flag with insects.  Recommend it,  it’s also cheap.

Next up was a favourite of mine since I borrowed it and didn’t return it

Dragonheart

Dragonheart

This is very much Rock/Scissors/Lizard/Spock/Paper type game.  It’s two player, fast moving and surprisingly good.  you fill various spots on the board with your cards grabbing points, but also setting up the next player to grab the cards you just placed.  It’s simple, fast and I sometimes win.

next up as old favourite

CATAN

One of our gamers had never played it.  What never played it? seriously? never played catan? Despite asking this a number of times it turns out he had still not played it in the past so there was nothing for it but to the catan box and play a game of it.  he won as it turned out…. ah well

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Catan is a great little game, it was a great game when it came out a decade back and it remains good in person on the smart phone (although that cheats), online.  it’s just a simple neat game and it’s one you really should play if you haven’t like john.  what you’ve NEVER played it? never? ah come on….

More of that next thur

Huzzah!

Vic

 

 

a bit of THIS thur night – Being a Drax Report

Augustus-Gloop

Have I read the rules? Of COURSE I’ve read the rules.  I don’t REMEMBER any of the rules but I’ve read them.  a common enough theme for a gaming night.  I was shocked at how much I forgot about Bloodbowl Team Manager, but help was on hand

It was summer, we had a smallish group and young Borys had brought Augustus

http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/137297/augustus

“It’s up for a speil award”

“it’s a bit like bingo”

“how long does it take?”

“30 mins”

“bang it out so”

Augustus plays a bit like Stone Age if you can remember that.  Each person gets a set of three which have a number of icons on them.  One person draws random icons cards from the bag and everyone tries to match them up.  If they fill their card they shout out “AVA CEASER!” and collect a reward either in score or extra ability or a bit of feck up your neighbours plans.  Now this is the way it’s supposed to work however the group being the mature people they are couldn’t help but shout out BINGO! when they completed a card or “BINGO MAXIMUS!”.  Once you complete a card you get another one from a communal picking track in the centre and you rinse and repeat. First one to seven stops the game and you count up your score.  There’s shades of Stone Age, little bit of Settlers and it’s grand and dandy. There’s a little bit more choice wise to increase your score and decisions to be made.  NOT a huge amount of cock blockery which is a pity.  I’m not a fan of solitaire type games.

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Not a fantastic game, not a bad game.  A very good kids game I reckon.  I’d play it again definitely but I wouldn’t rush out to buy it.   We couldn’t see it winning awards but what do we know

 

Next up was… 

http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/90137/blood-bowl-team-manager-the-card-game

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Blood bowl Team Manager.  Now I must admit I didn’t remember a whole lot of rules for this game. I THOUGHT it would come back to me but it didn’t so I punched the game and JUST as we were assembling the dials fortune shined on us.  A passing gamer and his son who knew the game inside and out from many rainy days play dropped by to say hi and coached us in this nice little game.

Bloodbowl Team Manager is a clever little game in the style of Iliad.  You have a limited amount of player cards and you try and score as highly as possible in a match to carry off the prize.  It’s a funny one insofar as it’s difficult to explain but once you’ve played a game it sinks in and you can play away without issue after that.

We’re BIG fans of Bloodbowl (we’ve a new big league of the computer version just kicking off) and this captures the spirit of the game nicely without becoming bogged down in the long game.  It’s fairly short (If I can stop talking long enough to take my turn), it feels like bloodbowl, the production quality of the game is excellent and it’s very much a direct in your face game…… and for some reason I still can’t warm fully to it.  I don’t know what it is but I should love this game and yet it falls short for some reason.  Not sure why.  I think it’s a blip I need to play it more and I’ll tell you what, I REALLY want to get my hands on the expansion.

I recommend this game.  It’s pretty cheap for a boardgame, it’s got quite a bit of variety and it’s clever. nicely different to other games.  I have a hankering to play it again so I reckon we’ll be seeing a lot more of this and the expansion soon

More of this sort of thing

Huzzah!

Vic

Zombie Dice

zombie

Have been trying to find games I can play with my 5 year old (have to think of the next generation of gamers) and I think this could be a hit

1. it’s cheap €12

2. It’s easy to play

3. It’s quick

4. It’s got Zombies in

More importantly he’s OK with the fact that the players will be the zombies in the game. He inquired and  I had no idea why zombies LIKE brains but he didn’t press the matter.

If you haven’t played zombie dice it’s a very simple push your luck filler game.  Well worth a look.  It’s also out on iOS but that doesn’t capture the whole feel of the dice.

 

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