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Werthead

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Tried out Wingspan yesterday.  Pretty good.  Despite missing the part where the game's owner explained the rules initially I managed to win my first game.  2 synergized bonus cards and a bunch of rodent eaters....good times.

Also played Terraforming Mars for the first time.  Seems like everyone loves the Prelude cards but they really unbalanced our games.  The one player who had played before managed to start with a rather large asteroid and a very large asteroid and went up about 7 on the terraforming track by the first generation.

Then in the replay he got a crazy plant stack.  The Corp that builds greenery cheaper, a couple extra plant productions and another prelude that let him (iirc) put out a card from his hand ignoring climate restrictions, so was at something like 5 or 6 plant production to start.  Game over.

Seems like the Prelude cards make each player's quality of start highly variable, which isn't great for an engine builder.  

Edited by mcbigski

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Terraforming Mar is solid but a bit broken. I enjoy it but it feels like there's a lot of other similar games which are stronger.

Felt like a trashy game, so played Fortress America in which the USA is invaded by, erm, the rest of the planet because they are jealous/fearful (delete as applicable) of America's power. Like most Fantasy Flight games - although this is a reskin of an earlier 1980s game heavily influenced by Axis and Allies but with an insurgency mechanic and card events - it's fiddly and overcomplicated for what it is, but it is quite fun. The American player has a lot to do and some difficult choices to make (I ended up sacrificing the West Coast but was able to ferment several partisan uprisings there behind enemy lines) whilst the invaders only have finite resources and have to be careful in how they are trying to carry out the conquest. Some of the battles on the Eastern Seaboard, particularly around Washington, DC and Atlanta were brutal.

Overlong for what it is (we agreed afterwards that at 3 or even 4 hours it would have been good but at 6 hours for a single game it definitely overstayed its welcome), but entertaining and surprisingly cheap. Another issue is probably the dead time that can fall for two of the invader players at any one time. I suspect it's a much better (and faster) two-player game.

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Played 2038 yesterday.  Enjoyed it, but it might be my least favorite 18XX.  Partly because of the randomness of the asteroid tiles, and mostly because it's one of the most fiddly games I've ever played (with only Indonesia and Antiquity rating above it in that regard, and I would definitely rather play either of those two games 10 out of 10 times).

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13 hours ago, Darth Richard II said:

Heh, the original Fortress America cover is...something else.

The original was much more hoo-rah, 'Murica. The new one goes for a somewhat more nuanced take, with the USA building a massive network of lasers and orbital mirrors which they claim are for defence but can also hit any target in the world with a massive laser blast with no warning, which the rest of the world is a mite sceptical about.

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Well. Since I am locked solo indoors for the next month or so, sending out the call for help with Steam/Switch/app based board games people enjoy? I currently have Terraforming Mars, Raiders of the North Sea, Small World, Carcassone, Isle of Skye, Splendor, Through the Ages, and Ticket to Ride available to me electronically.

I just got the Tabletop Simulator on Steam - is Wingspan on that doable solo? Any other recs?

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15 minutes ago, Darth Richard II said:

Damn I had no idea half of those had electronic versions.

Most of them are apps on Google Play. Varying quality - Raiders works pretty well. Isle of Skye is middling. Through the Ages is great, though I've never played the physical version. I am not good at it, but it's still fun. I also have Le Havre, but I hate(d) it, so left it off the list. Might be better as an in-person, on the table kind of game?

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4 minutes ago, Darth Richard II said:

I’ll have to give them all a look. By odd coincidence a lot of the games I got recently have Solo modes of play so I need to try those out.

Most of them are pretty cheap as apps, so they're low-risk. Race for the Galaxy is one I am having a hard time getting into (forgot abt it). I think if I had had a handle on the physical version, I would enjoy the app more. YMMV

Any good solo modes you enjoy? If you are interested in my list, it might be that we have some overlap.

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Only one I’ve tried so far is Clans of Caledonia which I thought was fun, doesn’t really feel like you’re playing the game more like I puzzle but it worked for me.

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I've played a couple of sessions of Dungeons and Dragons online with my friends. One of my friends discovered this website called Roll20 which is quite helpful in situations like this one.

It has some cool features, and it offers conference calls (video and audio), dice rolling, chat etc. They've had some reported connectivity issues yesterday and it felt during our session last night but the one before worked like a charm.

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The Through the Ages app is fantastic.  Not sure that I ever want to play the board game again, as the app handles the book keeping so well.  

Been playing a lot of the Mystic Vale app.  It feels pretty random, but is definitely a fun way to kill some time.

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Also playing a few games of Food Chain Magnate on BoardGameCore.  I like it, but definitely do not feel even remotely as engaged as a game of it in real life.

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Anyway games with solo modes I have sitting here I have yet to try, Imperial Settlers, Architects of the West Kingdom, Terra forming Mars, Star Wars Outer Rim, Gaia Project, Tiny Epic Space, and that's off the top of my head. Plus a bunch of co-op games that  have solo "just play as two characters" modes. Oh and Wingspan has a solo mode as well.

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On 3/27/2020 at 1:34 PM, baxus said:

I've played a couple of sessions of Dungeons and Dragons online with my friends. One of my friends discovered this website called Roll20 which is quite helpful in situations like this one.

It has some cool features, and it offers conference calls (video and audio), dice rolling, chat etc. They've had some reported connectivity issues yesterday and it felt during our session last night but the one before worked like a charm.

Apparently they're getting hammered. Normally people play RPGs (and board games) for the social interaction, so these apps were more useful for gaming groups to stay in touch if someone was away at university or people had moved. Now you have people who all live in the same neighbourhood who can't meet up for their weekly game any more, so they're using Roll20 instead. I believe they're trying to add extra capacity.

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Has anyone tried using tabletopia or tabletop simulator or similar? I was looking at Brass: Birmingham on tabletopia but I haven’t had a chance to test it out in a real game. Hard to tell if it’s more fiddly than it’s worth. Also I can’t find a list of games on TTS so I’m not sure I wanna pay for it before I know, I’ve seen a lot of comments saying there’s a lot though.

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1 hour ago, DaveSumm said:

Has anyone tried using tabletopia or tabletop simulator or similar? I was looking at Brass: Birmingham on tabletopia but I haven’t had a chance to test it out in a real game. Hard to tell if it’s more fiddly than it’s worth. Also I can’t find a list of games on TTS so I’m not sure I wanna pay for it before I know, I’ve seen a lot of comments saying there’s a lot though.

I am using TTS these days. There are many, many games in the workshop and in official DLC. I have played a couple rounds of my regular games and found it quite enjoyable. The interface becomes pretty easy to use very quickly. Some of the games my friends and I have tried out have not worked at all (Dominion, I am looking in your direction). Others have worked brilliantly. Well worth the few hundred bahts I paid for it. I think it must be about ten USD?

Also, you can flip the table and hurl components around willy-nilly. I am far too serious about my physical games to ever consider such actions IRL, but there is something pleasing about grabbing a handful of meeples and chucking them at your opponents' pieces.

I am a little unclear about the legality of some of the DLC, so I didn't want to mention specific games publicly. Am I being paranoid? Who knows. Certainly not the people watching me from across the hall...

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Posted (edited)

I use TTS, it's great. Lots of community made modules. They do pull them if an official module is made. I totally understand the concern about legality, but one reason I like TTS is that I can test drive games before buying them — board games can be shockingly expensive these days. I would never have blind bought Spirit Island, but I got to play it on TTS and as a result I bought the game and the expansion and backed the new expansion on Kickstarter. I bought Sidereal Confluence because of it too. (I use both physical games, but there are a ton of pieces and they take up a lot of space, so I actually prefer to play on TTS! Glad I bought them, though. If you don't support board creators, they'll stop making them.) 

Pricing is $20, or $60 for a 4 pack. 

Edited by Inigima

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