Helloooooooo, Saturday. You know you’re my favorite. I hope the other days of the week get jealous, but you’re just so great. Time to put on some appropriate music and relax… and probably play some games, too. I plan on doing that as well. But, before I go do that, I gotta make sure the people get the gaming reviews I know they so desperately desire.
This week, we have: Go Nuts for Donuts, Loot N Shoot, London, Centipede, Stellium, DropMix, Cursed Court, Einstein, Peptide, Empires: Age of Discovery, Test of Honour Ronin, Photosynthesis, and Fast Forward series (Fear, Fortress, Flee).
One Board Family:
Ah the donut. A beautiful ring of delicious dough and sugar. The donut is a miraculous dessert that comes in so many flavors. Will we find Go Nuts for Donuts from GameWright Games just as irresistible or will this cute filler game leave a bad taste in your mouth like an old jelly filled donut?
Board Game Quest:
London takes place in the years following the Great Fire which decimated much of the older parts of London. Players are tasked with rebuilding the city and stemming the rising tide of poverty that comes with a rapidly developing city.
Since this is an asymmetrical game, the Gnome and Centipede player’s set-up and turns will be different. Once set-up is complete, play begins with the Gnome player with two phases:
1. Refresh the Dice Pool: If there’s only 1 die left you re-roll all dice.
2. Activate 1 Die: Choose 1 die and take all actions listed on the die, then move that die out of the die pool.
The game board is comprised of six rotating disks held together with a cardboard boundary. Marbles drawn from a bag represent the astronomical objects placed on one of seven spaces on each disc. Objective cards are also set up beside the board that shows the configurations of colors of marbles required for scoring points.
There are actually three different ways to play DropMix, the most addicting of which is Freestyle. No rules, no challenges, just play cards and create awesome mixes (hopefully). How does it work? The DropMix board connects to your mobile device (phone or tablet) and uses a free app.
Board to Death TV:
The intrigues and scandals of the realm’s greater nobility are a subject of fixation, and even obsession, for the entire kingdom. Most especially for the minor nobility, whose fortunes can be elevated — or shattered — by what happens at court.
In Cursed Court, you must consider both public and hidden information, some of the latter shared among different pairs of players, when wagering your limited influence in each season of the year. As the machinations of the nine key nobles are progressively revealed, your fortunes rise and fall. After three years, a winner is crowned.
As Albert Einstein transcended science and became a recognizable figure around the world, so the game Einstein focuses on simple rules and quick playability, an accessible strategy game for gamers and non-gamers alike.
Peptide is an open-drafting card game with resource management elements. Basically, players compete to link amino acids side-by-side, forming what’s called a Peptide Chain (in biology, this process is called RNA Translation). In order to do so, players must first select from a number of available open-drafted face up cards, which in the game represent cellular organelles. Each organelle rewards players with either molecular resources or cellular actions. Final scores are based upon the types of amino acids in your Peptide Chain, and the player with the most points at the end of the game wins!
It would appear that we at Polyhedron Collider are a shower of dirty liars and hypocrites. “What is the reason for this confession?” you may ask. It seems that we may have made the statement on an earlier podcast that “it’s not all about the bling”. Whilst true, my track record on this sort of thing isn’t exactly exemplary as I’ve got a growing number of games in my collection with more shinies than Malcolm Reynolds after having Serenity diamond-encrusted – one of which is Empires: Age of Discovery, a hefty Worker Placement/Area Control game from Eagle-Gryphon.
Meeples & Miniatures:
The Ronin box set for Test of Honour was one of the wave one expansions for the game.
The box set allows players to field a force comprising fully of masterless Samurai, led by a special character – Tadashi ‘The Dishonoured’.
You are in charge of a species of tree (or you are the trees, however you want to look at it) and it’s your job to get as much energy from the sun as you can so that your trees can grow, thrive, produce seedlings for the next generation, and ultimately end their life cycle as strong, healthy trees. Succeeding at this means, inevitably, weakening the other trees in the forest, but such is the circle of life. The strong survive, the weak become mulch.
Fast Forward is a new series of games from Friedemann Friese that do not come with rulebooks. Instead, the games in the Fast Forward series are sorted decks of 90 cards each, and the rules of each game are discovered during play. The Fast Forward games also use Friese’s Fable System, introduced in Fabled Fruit, which evolves the gameplay from one game to another but whose components are fully resettable.
The series was launched with three games–Fear, Fortress, and Flee–and each game is stand-alone, yet it makes sense to review them together. For one thing, part of the fun of each game is discovering it as you go, so I have to be vague on some details to avoid spoilers. And for another thing, the system works pretty similarly in each game.