Tag Archives: board games

The Rivals for Catan – a Review

Holly and I were able to pick up a couple of board games last week on sale, and so of course we needed to check them out! One was a game we had been looking for for a long time: a two-player version of the classic Settlers of Catan. Our local game store regularly had the small box that was the 5-6 player expansion, but not the stand-alone 2-player game.

The Rivals for Catan

Not so this time! They had it: The Rivals for Catan. This game is made for only two players, which is a subset of games Holly and I love to check out. A lot of games are made for more players, and come up with some complicated version for two – a recent example was 7 Wonders. Some games don’t even try, like Settlers of Catan itself – it’s a 3-4 player game. We made the mistake of giving it as a gift to a couple – they can’t play it just the two of them!

So our quick review? This game captures the feeling of Settlers of Catan, it is well balanced (which, bad balancing can really remove the fun from a 2-player game!), and it has a bunch of play variants. This one box allows for 5 different games to play! Want to know more than that? Read on!

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7 Wonders, the Board Game

7 Wonders board Game

For how much David and I love playing board games we really do not talk about them enough. We had played 7 Wonders once before at a friends house or watched it being played and last night we got to get together with a friend and really test out the game by playing a borrowed copy. Honestly this game is so much fun. It seems complicated, but it is reasonably easy to understand. Yet, it has a great element of strategy to it as well.

The basic idea of the game is that you are one of the cities building one of the 7 wonders of the world. You are trying to build up trade, infrastructure, science buildings, troops, and of course the Wonder of the World. You have three ages in which to build up your city as much as possible to try and get the most points. There are a couple of interesting elements to the game that make it function similarly to the idea of having neighboring cities and dealing with them. It is a game with a lot of strategy, but it is great because it is a limited time frame, so it has a nice balance to it. Continue reading

State Master Board Game on Kickstarter

Recently, Holly and I were contacted regarding a game on Kickstarter. For one thing, it was exciting to know that someone saw one of our posts (TableTop Day Game Recommendations) and thought we might be a neat place to advertise their game. On the flip side, it is a risk to go out there and promote something you can’t really vouch for.

That’s the great thing about Kickstarter, I guess. Nothing happens until the project hits its goal – so you’re off the hook that way, I guess. So here’s the game:

This one was interesting to me on a few levels. For one, I am interested in the idea of gaming in education, and the whole new field and idea of Gamification. And Education has been a big issue we’ve talked about and been involved in, as well as a focus of the Feminist Friday posts lately. For another, board games are on our minds because of the upcoming gaming convention we’re anticipating helping form in town. And being asked is a powerful motivator!

So while I can’t vouch for the game, and I haven’t played it, I will say I have backed it. I backed it at the “one for you, one for a buddy” level, which allows us to donate one to the gaming convention’s lending library, as well as have one for ourselves!

Oh, and one last thing, more on this later: here is the site for the gaming convention!

Call to Action – Local Board Game Con!

Whatever thoughts I had for tonight, they have been derailed.

We got emailed today by some board gaming friends in town, and they are working on starting up a Board Game Con here in our community – which currently does not have an annual Con.

As Holly has said before, she has never been to a Con. So that would be exciting in its own right. I went to a number of gaming Cons, mainly to play War Games. I have been tapped to help this aspect, so that is exciting!

So I was hoping for your input – what would you do if you could help plan a Con? What have you liked from Cons you have gone to before – or what have you not liked? I am hoping for some of your stories, so please, reader participation day!

Thanks for helping us start to build a good Con from the beginning!

What in the World Happened to Indexes?

I’ve been saying for a while now that I need to write this post, and so the time is now. Because we’ve hit yet another example. Because one by one, the Indexes are going away.

Where are the Indexes going?

400 page strategy guide. Want to guess whether it has an Index?

400 page strategy guide. Want to guess whether it has an Index?

By which I mean, the Index section of books. What I’ve been running into has been with gaming materials. So, disappearing from the end of board game rules. Disappearing from the end of strategy guides. When you’re going to take the time to produce a large, written document like this, for people to turn to as a reference, you need an Index! You’re competing with the Internet, and if you make your products hard to use, you will lose people. And they will turn to free alternatives online.

So I’ve seen a few examples, so let me talk you through them, and why it annoys me so!

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