Regular Wednesday Meetup at Cool Stuff.
Oregon is an interesting, almost worker-placement game. I say almost, because it’s not exactly worker-placement. Essentially, all players have 4 cards in their hand, 1 building and 3 other cards, which may either be more buildings or locations. The board is set up in a grid, and you play 2 cards at a time. Either 1 building and 1 location, to place a building in any corresponding row to that location. Or you play 2 locations to play a worker in one of the spaces that interesects those 2 locations.
If you place a worker next to a building, that building scores you points. Each building scores in a different way. The Church scores you points based on the number of workers sorrounding it. The Post Office just scores 3 points. The Coal Mine and Gold Mine give you a random coal/gold token, which gives you a random number of points.
I really enjoyed Oregon. It’s a really different game from anything I’ve played before. I’d love to try it again, and I’d even consider owning it if it wasn’t out of print.
Dead of Winter
Dead of Winter is a zombie survival game. I actually got my copy of Dead of Winter by mistake. I ordered the Black Box from AEG from Amazon, and…it didn’t show up. Instead, Dead of Winter did, and since it was the hot shit at the time, I decided to keep it.
Now, Dead of Winter is a little different from some zombie games in that, it’s not really about fighting zombies. You do fight zombies in the game, and it’s often important to do so, but that’s not the main draw of the game.
In Dead of Winter, the players work together to accomplish a common goal. This goal could be something like killing a certain number of zombies, collecting a certain type of supplies, or something else. In addition to this main goal, each player also has a secret goal that must also be completed in order to “actually win” the game. On top of this, each round there’s a Crisis that must be completed each round, which is always collecting some type of supply equal to the number of players.
The game is the first in PlaidHat Games’ Crossroads series of games. What the Crossroads system is is a deck of cards with scenarios that may or may not come up during gameplay on each players turn. If the scenario comes up, they stop what they’re doing and perform the crossroads, which has a bit of flavor text (kind of like a cutscene in a video game) and then it gives the player some options or allows players to vote on an outcome. The downside of the crossroads is that half the time, either the scenario never happens or the card gives you the option to do nothing, which is often the better choice, so it can become more of a hassle than an enjoyable addition to the game.
Before this time, I hadn’t played Dead of Winter in a while, and unfortunately the players, including myself didn’t really dig it. For one thing, the set up and rules explanation is LONG. I’m talking 30 minutes, before even playing the game. On top of that, in a game with 4-5 players, there is a TON of down time between turns. Sure, there’s a little bit of player interaction, but for the most part, you’re just waiting around for your turn. On top of all this, there’s so many different things you have to keep track of and remember to do. You have a main objective, a secret objective, and a crisis, and on top of that, you have to worry about waste, about zombies, there’s just so much to keep track of.
I don’t think I’ll keep Dead of Winter in my collection.
Good Cop Bad Cop x3
I’ll be honest, going into Good Cop Bad Cop, I didn’t expect to like it. It’s a hidden-role game with player elimination, but…I LOVED it! It’s one of the better hidden-role games I’ve played (with Coup being the absolute worst), and The Resistance being my other favorite.
Good Cop Bad Cop has players take 3 secret Integrity cards. Integrity cards will say either “Crooked” or “Honest” If the majority of your 3 cards are “Crooked” you’re a Bad Cop, if the majority are “Honest,” you’re a Good Cop. In addition to the Honest/Crooked cards, there is a single “Agent” card and a single “Kingpin” card. If you’re the Agent, you’re the leader of the Good Cops, if you’re the Kingpin, you’re the leader of the Bad Cops, your other cards are irrelevant for deciding what team you’re on.
On your turn, you can do one of four things:
•Investigate by looking at one face-down Integrity card held by another player.•Reveal 1 of your Integrity cards to take an Equipment card (but you have to discard down to 1 if you now have more than 1.)
•Reveal 1 of your Integrity cards to take a gun and aim it at another player. OR aim at a different player if you’re already holding a gun.
•Shoot the player you’re aiming at.
When a player gets shot, they reveal all their integrity cards. If they are the Agent or Kingpin, they take a wound, otherwise, they die and are out of the game. When the Agent or Kingpin gets shot a second time, they lose and the other team wins.
I like Good Cop Bad Cop and would play again in a heartbeat. It’s a very solid hidden-role/deduction game.
Get Bit is a simultaneous-action-selection game where players play numbered cards in an attempt to out-swim a hungry shark. The number you play determines the order in which you move…unless you play the same number as another player, because then you don’t move at all.
If you’re at the back of the line at the end of the round, you Get Bit and remove 1 limb from your guy. If all your limbs are eaten, you’re out of the game. Whoever is at the front of the line when there’s only 2 players left is the winner.
Get Bit is another game I didn’t think I would like, because it has player elimination, but I really enjoyed it. It’s always really fun seeing if the card you chose payed off, and you start to feel the strategy of trying to figure out which card your opponents will play so that you can play the right card to not end up at the end of the line.
It’s actually really fun to watch even if you get eliminated, something that I don’t find to be true with most player-elimination games.
I liked Get Bit and I’d be happy to play again.
No Thanks! x6
No Thanks! is a bidding game where players attempt to score the least points. Each player starts with 11 chips. Each turn a card is flipped over, and in turn order a player can either take the card or put one of their chips on it and say “No Thanks!” This continues until a player takes the card. If a player has no chips, they must take the card.
The cards range in number from 3 to 35, and are worth face-value in points. Each chip is worth -1 point. When you accumulate runs of numbers (ie: 5, 4, 3), you only score the lowest number in the run, so it’s beneficial to take cards with chips on them if they won’t make you score points.
For a long time I had wanted to play No Thanks! because I heard it was a good, simple, but fun card game, and I was not disappointed (hence playing it 6 times in a row). I really like it, and I would love to own my own copy. No Thanks! is a great game!
A few of us decided to meet up at Cool Stuff.
Cosmic Encounter is a hit or a miss for me, depending on the game. Usually it’s a hit, but ocasionally it’s a miss. Today was sort of in between. I was having a good time with it, but the game was running very long, which I didn’t like, and some of the other players didn’t like that either.
Cosmic Encounter is all about attacking other planets with your ships, and playing attack cards to hopefully win the conflict. But every player has a ridiculously broken Alien power, and may hold Flare Cards, which give the player another special ability. The goal is to colonize 5 other planets, and the victory can be shared.
If you lose a battle, your ships go to the warp. The first player or players to colonize 5 planets is the winner.
I like Cosmic Encounter, but sometimes it can get tedious with some of the alien powers.
Vs. System 2PCG x2
A friend of mine convinced me to get this, and I’m so glad I did! It’s by far the best core set for an expandable card game I’ve ever bought. It comes with so many cards, enough even to build multiple decks.
I’d say it’s a mix of Magic: The Gathering, Yu-Gi-Oh, and Might & Magic: Duel of Champions, and probably the original Vs. system, but I never played that.
In Evolution, you take controls of one or more species, which you have to maintain and feed each turn. Increase their body size to protect them from Carnivores, or make them a Carnivore to attack other species.
Five Tribes: The Djinns of Naqala
This was my first time playing Five Tribes. It’s a really interesting game that is prone to Analysis Paralysis, but if you don’t think too much about the absolute optimal move, it’s pretty great. I love the mancala aspect and having so many different options.
In Five Tribes, you’re moving meeples around a grided tile board mancala style, picking up all the meeples on one tile, and dropping them off, one at a time, to other tiles, until finally landing on a final tile.
One the final tile, you pick up all of the meeple of the color you dropped and take the action associated with that tile. Then take the action associated with the tile itself.
You can acquire resources/slaves and Djinn’s along the way, too. Resources can be sold to get gold, slaves can be discarded to increase the power of some of the meeple actions, and Djinn’s give you special abilities during the game, as well as victory points at the end.
I liked Five Tribes, but I think you have to play with the right people, otherwise there could be a lot of downtime.