Tag: Dead of Winter

HALLOWEEN HORROR – TOP 5 SPOOKY BOARD GAMES

HALLOWEEN HORROR – TOP 5 SPOOKY BOARD GAMES

Oh yeah, it’s Halloween time again. I think last year I did a few Halloween themed articles, this year, I’m going to do top five lists every Wednesday on different Halloween themed things in various mediums. Not sure which all topics will be covered, but…

Friday Night D&D – Zombie Apocalypse

Friday Night D&D – Zombie Apocalypse

The name says it all really, we’re going to be doing a zombie apocalypse. However, we aren’t going to be playing the game where the players are trying to stop it. Instead, we’re going to pull from things like The Walking Dead, Dead of Winter,…

Top 5: 3 Player Games

Top 5: 3 Player Games

Now, last time it was basically games that only played two players. With three players, it isn’t often that you find a game that just plays three players. Most of the time games say 2-4 or 2-5 players, because that sells a whole lot better than a game that needs a very specific number of players. So these are going to be games that I’ve played that I like with three players best.

Image Source: Board Game Geek

5. Dead Men Tell No Tales
A cooperative game on the list, this one you are trying to rescue treasure from a pirate ship, dealing with ghosts, skeleton crew (all puns intended), and fires breaking out on the ship. If you have three players you have a nice range of powers, and the ship expands fast enough that you feel like your running around and it’s less contained. This is a tough cooperative game, but it’s a lot of fun, and you get that kind of Pirates of the Caribbean feeling with it. Definitely a game to check out for cooperative game fans, and it has some interesting mechanics with it that I’ve talked about on the action point list.

4. Lord of the Rings
Now, this isn’t the LCG (Living Card Game), this is the old board game. I do think it plays well with four as well as three. But I like it for it’s fast turns, and with three players you feel like you have enough players to have a shot, but it isn’t too long between turns. You’re going to see this come up later as well, the amount of times between turns. Keeping it moving fast is important in games because no one gets distracted or forgets what they are trying to do. I know it’s an older game so it isn’t always the easiest to find, but for someone who is a huge fan of Lord of the Rings, the game does have that travelling feel, and I guess the advantage of playing with five is someone can play as Fatty Bolger.

3. Ticket to Ride
Now, this one is good at any player count, but at three players the board is going to be the most open. So that is going to be the friendliest way to introduce someone to a game that can end up being a little cut throat with routes being blocked. Ticket to Ride, the North American map, is going to play very open and free flowing with three players and is likely going to get another non-gamer to like the train game if played that way. If played with five, or two, the map becomes quite tight and they couldn’t have fun if they get routes stolen before they can get to them just because of card draws. There might still end up being some of that, but it’s going to be less.

2. Dead of Winter
Now, this game can be played with a higher number, but I like it around that 3-4 player range. With two players, I don’t feel like you should play with the betrayer, with four players, the game can drag out a little bit long. With three players there is only one turn out of the three players turns you don’t have something to do. Either your taking your turn, or you at least get to check to see if the player triggers a Crossroads card. Even if you know immediately that the Crossroads card won’t be triggered, sitting through two turns while waiting for yours isn’t too long. Also, the more people there are, the harder it is to coordinate and actually win tough scenarios even if there isn’t a betrayer trying to screw you over.

Image Source; Geek Alert

1.Gloomhaven
I think I’ve said this before, but as my favorite game, I have to say I like it at my favorite player count. The reason I like it at three is that with Gloomhaven if it’s only two, you can probably spend more time figuring out the logic of what is going to happen when and really plan it out. With three players, you have to plan what you want to do and try and puzzle it out, but you also need a contingency so that your whole turn isn’t a waste. It forces you to not always do the best move but instead what might be the most versatile move. I also think that with four, it’s going to push that randomness too far out and you are going to have a number of wasted turns, especially if you have a character who isn’t that fast. For that reason Gloomhaven takes the top spot on my 3 player list.

Now, these are my person opinions, you’ll see on Board Game Geek that they disagree with me some (the community there), but these should all be enjoyable at the three player count.

What are some of your favorite games that you think really work the best at three players?

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Top 5: Action Point Games

Top 5: Action Point Games

Final top 5 list, I think that I could maybe come up with some more lists, but I might do eventual lists of games that play best or up to two through six or seven to give ideas for games like that. As I know…

Top 5: Other Mechanisms

Top 5: Other Mechanisms

Auction: Pretty straight forward concept in gaming, there’s some part of the game that you have to bid on to get. It could be something like turn order, which is my choice, or it could be the majority of the game where you are trying…

Themes in Board Games

Themes in Board Games

I’ve talked a lot about theme in board game before and how I like board games with a good theme on them. Instead of talking so much about why I like themes in board games, I think I’ve covered that decently well, I’m going to talk about some of my favorite themes in board games and why I like them.

Now, that could be less exciting, because there are a lot of generic themes out there, and a lot of games that are using themes over and over again. Especially now with copyrights not being extended to kingdom come, there are more works that are now public domain. A few years ago Sherlock Holmes became public domain and HP Lovecrafts work some time before that.

Image Source: Fantasy Flight

So what are some of my favorite themes on board games?

Epic Fantasy –
Super generic, but I really do enjoy a good fantasy game. Especially since a lot of them have a better developed story than most. Now it helps that I’m a big fantasy fan, so I can quickly understand what is going on with the various fantasy tropes and it allows me to get quickly into the story being told. Games like Gloomhaven and Legends of Andor do a good job of baking story into the actual game play themselves. I think what I like about the fantasy theme on board games is that it gives me a bit of that feeling of playing an RPG in a lot of the games and I can make my decisions like I am that hero. In a lot of ways it scratches my itch to play an RPG when I can’t be in a game as a player or as the GM.

Image Source: Cephalofair Games

Lovecraftian –
I did a big board game battle post about all of the Fantasy Flight games that I’ve played with the HP Lovecraft world theme on them. I’m a bit surprised with how main stream Lovecraft is in board games, but it works in most of the cases. I will say that it gets slapped onto a lot of games that don’t need it. Like in Unspeakable Words, you’re just doing a pretty standard word game, but it has the Lovecraftian theme and cute Lovecraftian artwork on it. Now, that’s fine because it takes a game that wouldn’t have artistic direction and gives it some, but it’s kind of silly. Then there are games like Arkham Horror, Mansions of Madness, and Arkham Horror LCG that are just steeped in theme. Those games seek to make you feel like an investigator of some background who is really going through this world, dealing with the monsters, progressing the story, looking for clues, and sometimes dealing with the events of the normal world. It also does a good job of setting an aesthetic that is generally pleasing to play in but also being a horror focused game. It really doesn’t rely on blood and guts like some horror games would.

Image Source: Fantasy Flight Games

Sci-Fi –
Another super generic option, like epic fantasy, but I figured I should say more than just Star Wars. While the Star Wars games are great that I’ve played, Imperial Assault and Star Wars: Rebellion, there are other sci-fi games out there that I’ve liked as well. It’s interesting because you have a wide variety of scope with games in the Sci-Fi genre. Games like Star Wars: Rebellion, Battlestar Galactica, and Cosmic Encounters are planet level Sci-Fi games. And while Cosmic Encounters doesn’t feel like quire as grand a scope as Rebellion, it’s still a bigger game in some ways. Compare that to Imperial Assault and Clank! In! Space!, those games have a focus that is much more on a smaller part of the world. You’re on a planet or in a space ship dealing with things, but you aren’t as worried about the whole cosmos. Having that variety is what makes Sci-Fi such a strong genre to me.

Now, there are so many more genres out there, but you’re not going to have that much issue finding games in these genres, and I tend to gravitate towards them. There is one that I want to see more of though.

Image Source: Board Game Geek

Weird West –
I really enjoy the weird west setting. Some might say that it’s a bit Lovecraft mixed with the wild west, and that’s probably pretty accurate. But when people say a Lovecraft game, that’s generally meaning 1920’s and Arkham area. Weird west can be a lot more than just that, and I like Shadows of Brimstone for that, though I’ve only gotten it to the table once. I need to go back and fix the monsters and hopefully stream that game at some point in time so I can actually play it some more. But the game is interesting and has some cool big moments to it.

Mythological –
Now, some might say this is part of fantasy, but I think I would qualify it differently than “Epic Fantasy”. Theming of games like Lords of Hellas, which I haven’t played or Santorini which is really an abstract game, but has the Greek mythology added to it, that’s a theme that I can get behind. What makes it generally pretty thematic is that all the deities have their own powers which really do track with the mythology that you’re in. Even if you aren’t going the standard Greek, there are now a lot of games with Norse Mythology. Blood Rage on the cards you draft does a really good job of creating that mythological feel for each deity that you can draft cards from. In fact, those cards are where you really get the theme of Norse Mythology in Blood Rage.

Image Source: Renegade Games

I could go on talking about more themes in board games. There are games with a heavily influenced theme by Japan and/or Anime. There are games t hat have cool adventuring themes that give you the Indiana Jones feel. There are a few themes that I’ll generally avoid though. If a game has the “trading in the Mediterranean” theme, that’s a hard pass for me. I’m also kind of done with the zombie theme at this point. I do like Dead of Winter, so I’m not opposed to it, but a zombie themed game isn’t all that interesting to me most of the time.

What are some themes you like in board games. What are themes that you want to see more of in board games?

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Evolution of Dice in Games

Evolution of Dice in Games

That dreaded moment in the game of Sorry, you are trying to role a two, exactly, so you can end up finally ending the game, and you roll and fail, again, and again, and again. Or Monopoly when you’re five away from the spot you…

The Evolution of Unique Characters in Games

The Evolution of Unique Characters in Games

This one is a bit out there in some ways. I would say that there has been attempts at unique powers for a while and some solid successes, but there was a time where the difference between who you were and who I was in…

Board Game Movies

Board Game Movies

So, the news came out that Mice and Mystics might be getting a movie. Check out ComingSoon.net for more information about it. There has also been talk about Catan having a movie. Then there are movies like Jumanji and Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle which have a board game focus. However, Clue is clearly the best of the batch that have come out thus far. So what would make a good movie, as a board game?

Image Source; Geek Alert

Now, I am going to toss one out here fast, Dead of Winter, however in a lot of ways, that’s basically The Walking Dead. So I’m not going to say anything about that one beyond it.

Betrayal at House on the Hill is the first other one that has popped into my head. And that’s because a lot of the haunts have such a classic feel. You could also most a series for it as well as a movie where a group goes into the same house over and over again to see what horrible thing would happen to them and who would betray the party. This has a bit of a Cabin in the Woods feel to it, because in that one there were a lot of “omens” lying around that they could have picked up. But having a betrayer as part of the group I think would add an interesting dynamic to it. Add in the Betrayal Legacy that is coming out, and you could get yourself a nice franchise.

Then from the same game designer as Mice and Mystics, you could do Stuffed Fables. In some ways, I think that would make a cuter story, stuffed animals going on a grand adventure to get back their girls lost blanket while they travel through a crazy world that has developed under her bed. Any game that has that strong a story element to it would obviously work better as a movie as compared to say, Catan. And this one has a very cute aspect to it that would make a very good family film.

So what about a game with less story focus as the driving storyline for a movie?

Image Source: Alderac

Love Letter, now why would that make a good movie? I think you could do a romantic comedy with it and have a lot of good humor surrounding trying to get the letter to the princess. Of course things would go wrong, the guards would throw someone in jail to stop one persons letter from getting through, and somehow at some point in time one of the suitors would end up getting their letter to the princess so that she can deliver the letter to herself and that person would just immediately lose, obviously. Almost would have a bit of the goofy feel of the Clue movie to it.

Root would be another cool game to see be made into a movie. Another one that definitely would have to lean towards a kid focused movie, but probably more intense than something like Stuffed Fables would be. Root would show the struggle in the forest for control. I would think that the Woodland Alliance would likely be the sympathetic main characters with the vagabond playing a large role as well. The Marquise de Cats would definitely be the evil group, and the Eyrie, while probably not being evil wouldn’t be well liked because they have too many rules. Personally, form having played the Eyrie, they are definitely the good guys, but maybe slightly misunderstood, but that can’t be helped.

Image Source: Leder Games

Arkham Horror LCG, to get back to more story focused games (though this game is fairly abstract with nice chunks of flavor text throughout), would be an obvious choice as well. You’d focus in on the investigators and what they are doing and the madness surrounding them. In some ways I’m a bit surprised that there hasn’t been something so Lovecraft focused done already. I might be forgetting something though. But a good movie set in that time frame of the 1920’s-30’s with the monsters possibly being released, that would be nice, and the potential for sequels is high with this one as there would always be another threat that the investigators would have to deal with.

Now, I’m sure that I could come up with a ton more games that would make interesting movies, if done well. What are some that would make great movies, in your opinion, that you want to see done? What are some board games that would make the worst movies?


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This Is Halloween: Board Games

This Is Halloween: Board Games

THIS IS HALLOWEEN! With possibly my favorite holiday coming up, probably Christmas then Halloween, I thought it would be a fun to toss out some of my favorite or good ideas for scary books, board games, movies, anime, or anything else. They are going to…