|| by FABIO 04/26/2005, 10:56pm PDT
||People still play these, right? Going down a list of the ones I own or have played throughout my college years.
Axis & Allies
WHY do people love this so much? Enough that it's the only Gamemaster game to have been made into a PC game. Is it just the setting allowing armchair generals to show how it would have turned out if THEY were in command? Alright for about two or three games until everyone realizes the ONE optimal strategy they MUST stick to, right down to the EXACT opening moves you MUST make the first turn. Out of all five players, only Germany and Russia really get to do anything, extremely boring for everyone else.
Recommendation: Maybe good for one or two plays until it becomes stale
Availability: High (sold through the new Avalon Hill)
Axis & Allies: Europe
Meh. Slightly more historically accurate (mostly by just removing the pacific theater, where all the inaccuracies occured), but still the same game. Infatry/tank grind between Germany and Russia, Britain and US simply ferry troops over to land in France.
Recommendation: Same as standard A&A
Availability: High (sold through the new Avalon Hill)
Not great, but still better than A&A. Red Dawn setting helps. A little unbalanced in that the American player must know exactly what he's doing in order to stand a chance. Certain invaders are forced to play certain roles, but they're not as deadset specialized as A&A. A decent game, but after awhile once the US player knows what to do, it mostly just comes down to the luck of the die and which reinforcement cards you get.
Recommendation: A step up from A&A. Decent enough. Hinges too much on simple luck though.
Availability: Long since discontinued. Ebay only. Some electronic online games available at the yahoo groups site.
Hands down the best Gamemaster series game. Why hasn't this been made into a PC game instead of A&A being made into one twice? Instead of reissuing this game under the new Hasbro/Avalon Hill brand, they come out with fucking FOUR different versions of A&A. When will people realize that game is fundamentally boring and cuts off any attempt of replay value at the knees?
Anyways, Shogun rules because no player is forced into an unbalanced role and every setup is completely different like Risk. No set teams, it's everyone for themself. Money received can be spent on all sorts of neat stuff like units, mercenaries, or fortifications, in addition to secretly bidding against other players for turn order and ninja hiring.
Recommendation: Highly. If you enjoyed A&A at all then this is a must have. Fun, tense game. High replay value.
Availability: Ebay only thanks to jerkoff A&A fanboy fagwads. Some play by email games available off the yahoo group.
I've really, really always wanted to like this game, but it's horribly, horribly broken. Basic premise is Risk with resources (oil, grain, minerals, money), logistics, and nukes. Would be fun, but is broken for several reasons.
- The only way to make money is off the market, which is horrendously violitile. Prices can go from $1 million to $1 billion. After people secure their own resources from territories, there's no more reason to buy off the market anymore, prices crash, and everyone goes broke.
- Limited resource stockpilies make the logistics of moving around large conventional armies impossible. Every game turns into a nuke war and usually ends in nuclear winter with everyone losing.
There are about ten billion different add ons and optional rules for this game, all of which needlessly (and exponentially) increase the complexity without ever bothering to fix the fundamental brokeness. For some reason the game still has some appeal to it. You can almost have enough fun simply playing through and trying to come up with new variations to fix it and make it playable.
Availability: Ebay only. Online games at various sites are available, but all of them use almost every single add on rule, bringing it to Star Fleet Battles levels of complexity, rendering it unplayable.
Recommendation: Horrible broken, but still has some sort of unexplainable charm to it. Probably not worth the trouble it'll take to acquire a copy.
The Mario Party of boardgames. On the surface, it's a fun party game with a ton (over 50) of wacky alien races, each of which with their own special power that lets them break one rule of the game. Basic gameplay is sort of like Diplomacy without borders (anyone can attack anywhere) with a slight random factor in direct combat (play the highest power card).
Then the problems start shining through. Like Mario Party, there are so many random factors that pop up (with all the cards) that it pretty much becomes blind luck that determines who wins rather than skill or strategy. End games are usually extremely anti-climatic. More than one person can win as long as each of them meets the winning requirements on the same turn.
Last turns usually look something like this
Player 1: "Hey, if you could play this card, then we'd both end up winning"
Player 2: "Okay" *plays card*
Player 1: "We win!"
Pretty lame conclusion for a one hour game. There's absoutely no incentive to selfishly horde the victory to yourself, so players just hasten the ending and EVERYBODY WINS! My suggestion for a more interesting cutthroat game (which always gets shotdown by the fools I played with) was for everyone to ante a couple bucks at the start. Winner takes the pot. Combined victories must split the pot evenly. More trickery, more backstabbing, more fun.
Availability: High (sold through the new Avalon Hill)
Recommendation: Do you enjoy Mario Party's complete randomness? Your answer will reveal how much you will like this game.
Fun, simple, quick little card game of Naval combat. Each player gets a certain number of ships, each with a certain number of damage points and gun size (and aircraft carriers). Cards are mostly salvo blasts that inflict a certain amount of damage, but you must have a ship of the listed gun size to fire it. Whoever deals the killing blow to a ship receives its point value. Games end up being everyone taking potshots at other players' ships, not wanting to leave an easy killsteal for anyone else. Some other cards add to the fun, the best of which is the destroyer squadron, a ship card that, if it can survive an entire round, allows you to target one player and outright sink 1-6 of his ships. It can be sunk if everyone works together, but will they? Or will everyone not fire on it in hopes of not pissing off its owner so they won't be targetted? Great opportunities for backstabbing and assholellery.
Availability: Part of the old Avalon Hill lineup, probably ebay only now.
Recommenation: Not only is it fun, it's extremely simple and quick to play. Playable by even the most casual of gamers (even girls!).
Fun fun fun cardgame simulating a banana republic revolution. Each player can field both Government and Rebel forces at once, but secretly supports only one of them. Each battle scores points for both the faction that won it and the player. The player with the most points at the end wins, but if the faction he supports loses, his point total is halved.
Lots of fun cards to keep things interesting. Play the "atrocities committed" card to halve an opponent's points for a battle. Now the possibility for UN intervention opens up where they police a player and prevent attacks on and from him. If this gets too annoying, just attack and kill off the peacekeepers! Capture the television station to broadcast propaganda and get enemy soldiers to desert. Capture the airfield to launch airstrikes. Capture La Policia station to arrest "traitorous" officers. I could really use the port to smuggle in arms staches, which I can then use to try and blow up El Bacno de Nationalle.
UNLIKE Cosmic encounters, tension as to who will win runs high up until the very end. You can't quite be sure about who supports which faction, some players might even be mercenaries trying to prevent either faction from winning by too much.
Availability: Part of the old Avalon Hill lineup. Probably ebay only now.
Recommendation: Great fun little game of shithole Latin American revolutions. Probably my favorite on this entire list. Moderate complexity to start, but once you pick it up it's pretty smooth and streamlined with excellent documenation and indexing on cards to explain things if you ever do get stuck.
Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/26/2005, 10:56pm PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/27/2005, 12:08am PDT
Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 3:30am PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 6:47am PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 11:52am PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 1:43pm PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 2:40pm PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 2:56pm PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 3:01pm PDT
laudablepuss says dice are random NT by 04/27/2005, 4:57pm PDT
Like football! I also said that. Also ballooning. And then I said comma. NT by 04/27/2005, 5:09pm PDT
Re: Volume 2, right now! by 04/27/2005, 12:10pm PDT
Wow by 04/28/2005, 12:27am PDT
ARE YOU GOING TO TAKE THAT FABIO NT by 04/28/2005, 12:43am PDT
*shrug* NT by 04/28/2005, 12:54am PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/27/2005, 7:54am PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/28/2005, 2:44pm PDT
Fortress America in ACTION! by 04/29/2005, 1:20pm PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/27/2005, 11:56am PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/27/2005, 1:52pm PDT
Scott Orr disagress with you! by 05/09/2005, 9:20pm PDT
Man who made game that sucks, sucks :( NT by 05/09/2005, 11:10pm PDT
Memoir '44 by 01/24/2012, 9:50pm PST
No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by 04/27/2005, 12:31pm PDT
Re: No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by 04/27/2005, 1:02pm PDT
Re: No Dark Tower? No Stop Thief? by 04/28/2005, 2:45pm PDT
yes. by 04/28/2005, 3:20pm PDT
Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 1 by 04/27/2005, 12:50pm PDT
For the love of God can no one stop these boardgame roundups??? by 04/27/2005, 1:16pm PDT
Re: Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 1 by 04/27/2005, 1:22pm PDT
Mark's Boardgame Roundup part 2 by 04/27/2005, 6:11pm PDT
Settlers counter rebuttal by 04/27/2005, 6:35pm PDT
Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by 04/27/2005, 6:47pm PDT
actually that was me (that's the new mysterio name? I thought he was a poster) NT by 04/27/2005, 6:47pm PDT
Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by 04/27/2005, 7:55pm PDT
Re: Settlers counter rebuttal by 05/10/2005, 11:14am PDT
I can't believe I never heard of Arkham Horror before. by 04/28/2005, 9:28pm PDT
Re: Boardgame roundup: Vol. 1 by 04/28/2005, 12:32am PDT
Vol. 3 by 05/09/2005, 11:29pm PDT
Thanks! by 05/10/2005, 7:21pm PDT
suggestions by 05/10/2005, 9:20pm PDT
Dark Tower sells for hundreds on ebay? by 05/12/2005, 4:08pm PDT
I shot mine full of BBs. Along with all my classic GI Joes. :( NT by 05/13/2005, 11:11am PDT
I demolished my star wars toys in my sand box or fed them to my guniea pig :( NT by 05/13/2005, 1:58pm PDT
"Putting away childish things" turned out to be a really stupid idea. by 05/13/2005, 4:47pm PDT
Mine sold for $130 by 05/26/2011, 11:14am PDT
Arkham Horror: Making Pen & Paper games obsolete by 02/13/2008, 9:51pm PST
That should read 1d8 people :( by 02/13/2008, 10:05pm PST
Wait'll you discover "How to host a murder mystery!" NT by 02/13/2008, 10:22pm PST
^ roleplaying =( NT by 02/14/2008, 4:20am PST
My group hit a bunch of obstacles with Arkham Horror. by 05/25/2011, 7:14pm PDT
Re: My group hit a bunch of obstacles with Arkham Horror. by 05/26/2011, 12:06pm PDT
My group is having fun now with a play-by-email setup in google docs. by 07/27/2011, 9:16pm PDT
Boardgame roundup: Pandemic, Longshot by 05/26/2011, 10:33am PDT
+1 on Pandemic, it's very fun by 08/07/2011, 6:14pm PDT
Apparently the expansion is worth it if you like the core game NT by 08/07/2011, 8:29pm PDT
Battlestar Galactica by 08/03/2011, 9:09pm PDT
Re: Battlestar Galactica by 08/04/2011, 12:58am PDT
Re: Battlestar Galactica by 08/04/2011, 5:41am PDT
Re: Battlestar Galactica by 08/04/2011, 8:31am PDT
Re: Battlestar Galactica by 08/05/2011, 4:32pm PDT
Tried Exodus by 08/25/2011, 11:52am PDT
Citadels by 08/04/2011, 6:26am PDT
Needs the expansion by 08/04/2011, 8:40am PDT
The expansion comes with every version of the game currently available by 08/05/2011, 4:04pm PDT
Totally worth it by 08/27/2011, 7:44am PDT
Cosmic Encounter by 08/28/2011, 5:23pm PDT
Re: Cosmic Encounter by 08/28/2011, 5:31pm PDT
The best board game review by 01/24/2012, 8:34pm PST
War of the Ring by 01/24/2012, 10:09pm PST
Age of Wonders - Positive! by 01/31/2012, 10:29am PST
*80% to 120% NT by 01/31/2012, 10:31am PST
I liked this one by 01/31/2012, 7:30pm PST
Review request: REX by 02/24/2012, 5:56am PST
Haven't played it, but I have no faith in FFG NT by 03/13/2012, 8:33pm PDT
Why's that by 03/14/2012, 5:42am PDT
Going Cardboard by 02/24/2012, 7:10am PST
Ever wish there was a simplified version of Arkham Horror? by 03/23/2012, 12:41pm PDT
REX, aka Dune 2.0, aka Cosmic Encounter Obsolescence by 04/12/2012, 8:01pm PDT
UPDATE: default rules broken, needs fixing NT by 08/23/2012, 8:42am PDT
Ticket to Ride: Steam edition by 08/23/2012, 8:47am PDT
How is that different from the boardgame version? by 08/23/2012, 9:14am PDT
Never played the boardgame version by 08/23/2012, 10:49am PDT
Oh, I have the version set in Europe and they fixed that. by 08/23/2012, 1:42pm PDT
Great, no one ever plays the other maps online =( NT by 08/23/2012, 5:43pm PDT
Vassal by 05/04/2013, 2:43pm PDT
Fucking iPads by 06/11/2013, 3:32am PDT
Did you want to like Arkham Horror but couldnt? by 12/12/2013, 8:02pm PST
Thanks, I'll get it. NT by 12/13/2013, 8:44am PST
Alhambra - Positive! Guillotine - Positive! by 12/13/2013, 9:00am PST
board game review: Twin Tin Robots by 12/13/2013, 10:33pm PST
Board Games? More like...wait for it...WAIT FOR IT...SNORE-d games! by 12/19/2013, 9:54pm PST
In the land of the video gamer, the board gamer is king by 12/19/2013, 10:47pm PST
I'd invite you over but I only have one game port on my soundbalaster :( NT by 12/20/2013, 12:29am PST
Review: Incognito (Board Game) by 03/24/2014, 12:55am PDT
Shadow Hunters is fun by 03/24/2014, 1:08am PDT
Review: Libertalia (board game) by 06/17/2014, 11:52pm PDT
Gaming with family by 08/04/2016, 7:07am PDT
Re: Gaming with family by 08/04/2016, 8:45am PDT
Re: Gaming with family by 08/04/2016, 8:47am PDT
There is no reason to ever play Ticket to Ride or Dixit by 08/04/2016, 3:56pm PDT
The reason is that they're great family games by 08/04/2016, 5:28pm PDT
The Pink Panther remake is a great family film! NT by 08/04/2016, 9:48pm PDT
Fabio has never had to game with relatives and it really shows. NT by 08/05/2016, 6:06am PDT
What kind of family get togethers mandate boardgames? by 08/13/2016, 6:16pm PDT
The kind where we're inside and just need an activity to do? NT by 08/13/2016, 7:54pm PDT
Hey this game is coming out with an expansion. Look at the scenario writers by 08/13/2016, 7:59am PDT