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Author Topic: The Board Game Thread  (Read 94920 times)

wedgeski

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Re: The Board Game Thread
« Reply #705 on: 06 July, 2020, 03:54:01 PM »
I thought I'd post about the games we've been playing with our board game group during lock-down. We identified 3 or 4 games that everyone owned, set up a Discord channel, plonked the laptop and webcam at the end of the table, and dove in. We're now down to just us, and one other couple, but our weekly video-conferenced game sessions have been a welcome and familiar anchor in the weirdness of the last few months.

Playing remotely from each-other is actually quite simple if you both own the game, and one side of the call is responsible for calling out game state. You don't need overhead cams, or for that matter the ability to see the other party's board at all. I know there are digital shared tabletops out there, but I find the entire experience is dramatically diminished when you're not hunched over an actual board, squinting at tiny card text and trying desperately to wring every point you can from the last round.

Lords of Waterdeep. This may be one of the most predictable in the list, but this game is just astonishingly good (especially if everyone in your board game group also plays D&D with you!). The Skullport expansion makes things more varied and unpredictable, at the cost of taking some of the finesse out of a good victory (IMO).

For remote play, agree ahead of time what you might want to take out of the Lords, Buildings, and Intrigue decks (we remove the strongest PvP elements, and there are a couple of Lords which we've come to feel don't compete very well). Intrigue is a wrinkle, as they're held as concealed hands, but everyone just draws from their own (full) deck and the odd duplicate makes little difference. One party on the call is responsible for dealing Quests and Buildings, and everyone keeps their board state in line.

We must have played 40 to 50 games of this since buying it, with about a dozen of them during lock-down. I'm constantly amazed at how fresh and exciting a clear board feels just as the game starts, and how engrossed everyone is by the time they place their last agent. It's an absolute classic!

Galaxy Trucker. Piece together your space-ship under the clock, then watch it succumb piece by piece to the rigors of space travel during the cargo run. A relatively recent addition to our rotation, where the biggest compromise is that, in a four player game with two instances of the game in play, everyone has twice as many pieces to choose from. This changes the kind of ships you build, but not massively to the detriment of the game.

For remote play, one party deals and announces the mission events. Easy as that.

Trucker is a phenomenal game. There's no experience in board games that I've yet found to match the sheer delight of assembling your starship at the start of every round (despite my frustrating tendency to have one illegal piece at some vital junction and having half my ship snap off before we even get going!). There is also a *ton* of mastery to bring to bear in knowing what kind of misfortunes will befall your crew before they reach their destination (and even a game mode where you can see what those misfortunes are ahead of time, hinting at what kind of build you should aim for).

Don't put those crew pods next to each-other folks. Anyone who has played will know why.

Trucker commits one unfortunate board-gaming crime, which is the possibility of being removed from play for entire rounds due to sheer bad luck in the early events. We've seen this enough to regard it as a flaw, but we haven't decided what to do about it yet.

Elder Sign. Quality dice-pooling in a Lovecraftian nightmare. This is one of my favourite co-operative games, great looking with a constantly changing board, and full of crunchy probability analysis.

Again, very simple to run with two remote parties who both own the game. Simply have one side of the call announce new rooms, monsters, and other drawable effects, while the other side keeps its board state inline. Bonus points for narrating the room descriptions in your best Vincent Price.

Unexpectedly, one thing that's becoming apparent the more we master Elder Sign is that, amazingly for a modern board game, and especially for a Cthulhu-based board game at that, it's actually a bit easy! Of our last five games, we lost only one. We'll move into the expansions soon, and hopefully they'll re-inject the utter futility of standing against the Old Ones that we're all looking for.

CalHab

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Re: The Board Game Thread
« Reply #706 on: 06 July, 2020, 09:28:23 PM »
If this was announced then I missed it, but Rebellion are Kickstarting an RPG:
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/rebellionunplugged/adventure-presents-tartarus-gate

Laser Skeleton

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Re: The Board Game Thread
« Reply #707 on: 30 July, 2020, 04:38:54 PM »
I'm sure I'll be repeating earlier chat here but I recently picked up the Cursed Earth card game and really enjoyed it. I'd played the Lost Expedition game before and massively enjoyed that too. Plus the art is sensational! Any other fans of this out there? I have the old Dredd board and RPG games on my shelf too, sadly never played!!

CalHab

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Re: The Board Game Thread
« Reply #708 on: 30 July, 2020, 06:07:46 PM »
I struggled with that game. I think solo games just don’t hold an appeal, to be honest. Shame, because the art is good, as you say.

sheridan

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Re: The Board Game Thread
« Reply #709 on: 31 July, 2020, 09:44:14 AM »
I struggled with that game. I think solo games just don’t hold an appeal, to be honest. Shame, because the art is good, as you say.

Depends on what you mean by struggle.  We struggled as in didn't win, but enjoyed it.