The opinionated gamers reviews and commentary on boardgames r gas constant chemistry


I started reading about the Essen 2018 games back in August, and Valparaiso was one of the ones which I quickly focused on. I have generally been a fan of the dlp strategy games, and the previous efforts of the Malz (father/son duo?) – Edo and Rococo – were hits for me. I also liked the fact that this one of the small number of strategy games that I was interested in which could handle up to five players… I dove into the rules as soon as they were posted, and I was ready for my first play in no time.

In the game, players are working to be the best developer of trade in the city of Valparaiso. The board shows the harbor of the city as well as multiple villages hidden in the offshore forests. Market tiles are arranged around the board and achievement cards are lined up against the top edge of the board. Each player is given their own Repository board and a set of 8 identical action cards to start the game. f gas regulations On this board are a number of slots to play cards into. There is also a warehouse and a cargo hold area on this board. Each player also gets to choose a starting set of 3 goods, but each player must choose a unique set and a meeple on the board in an unoccupied village. Continue reading →

Many years ago the original Civilisation game was created by Francis Tresham and several clever ideas were introduced including a new trading system whereby players traded commodities to gain points which were exchanged for civilisation developments. The desire to gain more commodities of the same type drove the trading process. Included within some of the trades were calamities which affected the person receiving the card. This was part of the trading process and also the way in which you could affect a rival. I always thought that the system should be used in a future game but until now I had not come across a similar system.

Trading on the Tigris acknowledges the original idea and uses it as its central game system. Players receive a starting number of basic and imported production cards which are used to acquire the basic and imported goods. Development cards allow players to add more production facilities or other benefits gradually increasing the number of trading cards received each round. There then follows a similar but not identical trading system to that used in Civilisation. electricity projects ks2 The benefits for players allow sets of commodity cards to be exchanged for money (which are the victory points in this game). In addition the cards allow the players to move their markers along two tracks. The markers start in the centre of each track and move towards democracy or dictatorship on the government track while on the religion track they move to Ashur or Marduk. The further the markers move from the centre, the better are the cards to be drawn, which increase the number of commodities that will be traded in the future rounds.

The trading takes place in five minutes or less and then the sets of cards are cashed in. Each player can only carry over three cards so most of the cards used to get victory points and other bonuses immediately. There are a few cards that provides a negative effect for the receiver of that card. Unlike the trading system in Civilisation these can be traded on in the trade phase to other (unsuspecting) players. The downside is not too radical so it doesn’t feel as disastrous as you might expect. In addition some of the cards allow for a specific specific special trading card to be received from a separate deck of cards. These provide very interesting impact on the game. So far I have found only cards that have to be traded. In other words they provide no benefit for the person receiving the card unless there are included as part of a trade. This is very interesting and novel use of the trading system.

Trades can be reasonably complex. They can include the trading cards, culture points and barbarian points which are good or bad respectively at the end of the 2nd to 5th term if you have the most of these types of points. You have to tell the truth about the commodity elements of the cards, but not about other aspects, though you may of course.

As soon as I heard that the game had use the original trading system from Civilisation I was interested in the game. I was concerned that the negative impact of trade could offset the enjoyment of trading but fortunately this concern was misplaced. The game plays really quickly (I’ve only played with three people so far) and the trading was enjoyable and fun to conclude. The penalties for receiving negative impacts was sufficiently small that no one worried about them too much although they did have a marginal effect. q gastrobar leblon I thought they were appropriately for the scale of the game.

The components are solid. Players have a board which shows all the resources and how sets increase in value and is a good player aid. There are hundreds of cards which was great, and while the iconography while clear, the icons used were too small. Why on earth publishers do not use more space on the cards for larger symbols is beyond me. The two tracks are jigsaw pieces which are fine but the religion tracks appear to be set up the wrong way when compared to the iconography on the cards and the player boards. It’s not a big deal, but ought to have been picked up. These are minor niggles.

Joe Huber (1 play) – While I am a big fan of Civilization (and even more so Advanced Civilization), and I agree that there’s a nice attempt to reuse some of the mechanisms, at that point I diverge from Alan. For me, Trade on the Tigris became less and less interesting as the game went along. Players don’t receive enough cards to make the trading as interesting as in the original game, and the game just doesn’t last long enough to allow for the story arc to play out – which is usually the problem with attempts to create a shorter civilization building game.

Dan Blum (1 play): I agree with Joe’s comment about the story arc, but it bothers me less than it does him. I rather enjoyed the game up until we got to the level three development cards. All the development cards are obtained by drawing two and selecting one; this works fine at the lower levels since the cards generally give you abilities which shape your civilization but do not have drastic effects. The third level cards all seem to be about drastic effects and victory points, which is fine as far as it goes but means they are very swingy so pick-two-choose-one doesn’t work very well. I had a choice of two cards which did very little for me or to anyone else and other players got cards which gave them many more points and/or hurt other players. This had a major effect on the outcome.

There’s a scene in the movie Blow-Up that I often think of when I play party GAMES. gas emoji meaning It takes place in the middle of the swinging 60s, when the lead, Thomas the fashion photographer (played by David Hemmings), wanders into the middle of a crazy happening: the up-and-coming band, the Yardbirds, are playing their rock show to a full audience that is completely motionless, emotionless. Guitarist Jeff Beck, reacting to some static in his equipment, starts banging on an amp to try to get the noise to stop. A tech runs on the stage and twiddles some knobs. It doesn’t stop. Finally, in frustration Beck smashes his guitar on the stage. The young guitar god then tosses the remnants into the tranquil sea of youth, inciting mayhem. Everyone springs to life. There is a mad scramble to retrieve the ruined instrument’s neck. After fighting tooth and nail to claim his prize, the movie’s protagonist is chased by a mob through the venue, out into the halls. Finally, with his last pursuer bent over double to catch his breath, Thomas escapes to the outside world, free, into a busy city that is oblivious to the scene that just took place. Continue reading →

Fellow Opinionated Gamer Tery Noseworthy has shared some thoughts on several of the new games she played last month at Lobster Trap. electricity journal Lobster Trap is an annual event I host with a good friend. Its small with attendance topping out at 170ish people. The goal is to provide an atmosphere that feels like a family reunion of sorts. As organizers we try to have a decent number of the latest Essen and fall releases available to try ahead of the holiday season. Lots of the attendees work there way through these new releases while others schedule longer games with friends who they only see once a year. I’m biased, but it is my favorite game weekend of the year given the relaxed casual nature of the event. gas yourself in car You can sit down with anyone and have a fantastic time whether you are at the game table or out for a nice dinner.

Trappist One – There always seems to be a thematic winner from Essen. This year we seem to have a larger than usual amount of games with a futuristic/space theme with NEOM and Lift Off below and Ganymede still to be played. Trappist One from Gen X is squarely in this thematic zone as well. Build up a tableau of cards in an attempt to colonize planets and mine them for different resources. Ship the resources for “star gold” and buy things like orbital stations and satellites for points and abilities. The theme is intriguing with the game play and mechanics feeling fairly standard. We struggled with the rules with a bit with some some variations in key terminology showing up in different areas adding some unnecessary confusion. Lots of jokes were also made as your home planet is referred to as Capital One. Feel free to add your own. We all had a noticeable level of ennui about the game. With so many new games this time of year, consignment to the back of the shelf without too much more thought is a likely possibility.

Friedemann Friese possesses one of the most imaginative and creative minds of any game designer in the world. And the remarkable thing is that that statement has probably been true for over 20 years. He doesn’t just think outside of the box—sometimes it seems like his thoughts roam outside of the entire known universe. His games are like no others. Unfortunately, that means (to me, at least) that sometimes his designs are more interesting than fun, the gameplay playing second fiddle to the fascinating concepts at the core of the titles. This has been particularly noticeable recently, as most of Friese’s most prominent (and audacious) games, like 504 and Fabled Fruit, just haven’t worked for me, even though I admire the ideas behind them. His latest effort, though, is Futuropia, a no-luck economic game of perfect information, which is right in my wheelhouse. Could this be, after a prolonged dry spell, a Friedemann game that I actually want to play? My hopes were high and I was lucky enough to play a couple of games of it recently. Here are my early impressions of the design.

First, let’s describe the setting. At some unspecified time in the future, the players are tasked with creating their own personal utopia. Not an entire social order, just a very small part of one. Specifically, the idea is to build and populate a self-sustaining condominium, complete with generators for food and energy, living quarters, robots, and people. The goal is to house as many humans as possible who don’t have to work and who can devote all of their time to leisure activities. electricity vampires As the rules so F-fortlessly put it, this is time to spend “fishing, farming, fencing, and flying”, as well as playing games, of course. Now that’s my idea of a utopia! Continue reading →