The Collection A to Z – The Letter L
We’re back to one letter for today as the Letter L, which brings you todays games, and there are a number of them. There is one IP that might have a few games that show up on the list, but it’s an interesting variety of games for sure ranging from light and silly games to big epic games.
We’re starting off with a light and silly one, this one is basically light bikes from Tron the board game, with all of the 80’s gloriousness. In fact, the box even looks like a VHS tape collection (though slightly too large for one). This game has you basically creating light trails, trying to knock other people out, but more so trying to get to objectives before everyone else does to claim them as points. It’s a bunch of silly madness but works well, and it’s one of those board games that gets you up and has you moving around the table as you try and strategize. Now, not all games need to do that, but I like simple games that do for a nice bit of filler.
Legacy of Dragonholt
This is an RPG as much as it is a board game, but Fantasy Flight created what is basically a simple RPG in a box. Oddly enough, not the only one that will be on this part of the list, that kind of has that choose your own adventure feel. This one caught my eye because of how simple it is to play, you aren’t rolling dice, you’re basically just making decisions, and if you have skills, you can use them to open up other paths that might have been closed off if you didn’t have them. The game tells an entertaining story from what I’ve gotten through, and I think there is plenty to explore, I really need to just sit down and knock this one out.
Legends of Andor (Journey to the North Expansion)
Legends of Andor caught my attention a while back as a simple fantasy adventure game. Now, it isn’t extremely simple, the game has good challenge to it, but it is a lot of fun to play. Legends of Andor is very much a puzzle game as compared to a normal fantasy dungeon crawl-esque game, you want to kill off all of the monsters, but here if you do that, it progresses the story too fast and you’ll end up losing. So it’s a balancing mechanic of keeping monsters out of areas that they can do damage, while also completing objectives but not rushing the story along too fast. I like it for a game that feels like it has a lot of traditional board game mechanics, but gives it a bit of a different feel with the puzzle like twist.
Another GenCon game that I got to try there, I couldn’t pick it up because it was sold out. Let me say that the first experience I had with the game was questionable, this is a cooperative word game, and I don’t think that all the players knew it was cooperative because the gal giving a demo did a very bad job demoing the game. But I’ve gotten to play it since then, including a second demo of it at GenCon and that one was much better, and I have enjoyed the game every time that I’ve played this. This game borrows from Hanabi where your cards are facing away from you, but in this one, it’s a word game, you are trying to figure out what word you might have, but everything is all mixed up in front of you and only one letter of yours is up at a time. People are giving clues that use letters that they can see (so not their own), plus any additional letters that there might be or a wild letter so that people can narrow down what their letters are and figure them out before the end of the game so they can unscramble their word. Overall, a really fun and clever game, it also plays up to six which is awesome.
Lift Off! Get me of this Planet!
This was the first game that I ever backed on Kickstarter. Lift Off! is a cute little game with a million little meeples whom you are trying to get your color of meeple off the planet before it explodes and before your opponent does. To do this you have to prepare you launch sites by getting fuel, gear, etc. to them, and get meeples there ready to launch and wait for the right time of the day (or night) to launch. It makes a really interesting timing puzzle as you look to maximize how quickly you can get off the planet by what you can actually launch, and sometimes a spaceship, for example, might need a lot to launch so you’ll have to leave room on the ship for your opponent so that they can help you get it launched, while others, like a slingshot, might need basically nothing. It’s a fun family weight game or just a bit heavier that looks really cute and plays well.
The Lord of the Rings (Sauron Expansion)
This is an older Fantasy Flight game that they just reprinted with a fancy anniversary edition, and I think the older edition looks better. This game has you playing through the Lord of the Rings trilogy and it’s kind of a puzzle and push your luck game as you try and advance down the boards, playing through the major moments of Lord of the Rings, but you need to do the right combination of cards, and you need to keep your characters away from Sauron as well. This game is a bit like The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game, not in game play, but in how it handles the theme, where if you know the source material, that knowledge brings the theme more than the game play does. The Sauron expansion allows someone to play as Sauron against the group as well, which is a fun edition.
Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle-earth
Another Lord of the Rings game, this one, while it has Lord of the Rings characters like Gimli and Aragorn, isn’t about the trilogy. Instead, you are playing through a campaign that comes before the trilogy as Bilbo is also a character you can play. The game is app assisted which allows it to do a lot of the house keeping for the monsters in the game. This feels like it’s based off of Mansions of Madness, and I know it uses the same base programming for the app as Mansions of Madness, but it gives you more exploration as well as then tactical combat. The game really plays in two types of scenarios, that exploration and then combat, which is fun, as you get something for all types of players. It also moves away from dice chucking like Mansions of Madness to a card system which works well.
Lords of Hellas (Dark Ages Expansion)
Another big and epic game, this one from Awaken Realms, it is an interesting game in that it does so many things in it. There is a drafting piece to the game, happens when you build temples, there is area control, there is fighting monsters, or fighting other players for control of the areas, you can build temples and statues, unlock new powers and go on quests. This game has a lot going on but really plays in a pretty straight forward way. I like all of what you can do because it feels like what you’re doing and what you can focus on is different than everyone else. I also like that it has four win conditions, controlling two regions and all of their sub regions on the map, controlling a number of temples, killing three monsters, or controlling a statue after it’s been built. This game is also really well balanced, we had a five player game and all of us were in a couple of turns of winning when the game ended and all of us had switched what our goal was for winning by the end as well. Really love the game.
The Lost Expedition (The Fountain of Youth & Other Adventures Expansion)
The Lost Expedition is one of my go to filler plus games. It feels like it’s just a bit more because it takes just a bit longer than some games, but definitely is straight forward enough to be considered a filler and it’s cooperative. You are creating paths in this game for your adventuring group to go down, during the day everyone plays down two cards (generally) and they go in numerical order, and you work together to traverse that path. In the evening, you go for another hike, this time it’s playing down the rest of the cards in your hand, but they don’t go in numerical order, but the order that you play them in. This creates some interesting game play, and for people who feel like there is an alpha gamer problem in cooperative game, The Lost Expedition counters that by not allowing that much sharing of information or really any during the card playing phase, and that’s the part that really sets up what you’re going to do.
This is another choose your own adventure style game, more so than Legacy of Dragonholt. It has you playing through a graphic novel basically. Van Ryder games has put out a lot of them which have been quite popular. I grabbed this one at GenCon and I still need to get it played, but I like the concept and I’m very curious to try it to see if this is maybe something that I’d want to get more of. They really have about one play through per book per person, but it should be something you can then pass off to another person to play as well.
Status: To Be Played
Another early to my collection game because of seeing it Wil Wheaton’s Table Top, though, I think this was played on the first International Table Top Day if I remember correctly. This game is a little micro game where you are trying to get a Love Letter to the princess and you are doing that by trying to have the highest value card left in your hand when all is said and done, as long as it’s not the princess. But you can also knock other players out of the round, and if you do that, that can also cause you to win the round. It’s played over a series of rounds, but even playing up to 4 wins in a two player game, that goes extremely fast. It’s a nice tiny little game that has had a lot of versions of it put out.
I impressed myself there, out of all the games that start with the letter L that I own, I’ve only not played one of them. Granted, with another one I haven’t played my copy, Lazer Ryderz, but I want to once I can have more people over again. There is really such a wide variety of games in here, and I am going to go through at the end and do my favorite game for each letter, though for some that might be obvious.
What’s your favorite game that starts with the letter L? What game starting with L should I add to my collection?