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9 Notes

Me on The Indoor Kids Podcast

I was on The Indoor Kids, and I talked about board games FAR MORE than they anticipated. I may have upset them.

16 Notes

games that have been played on the mad men set

…or at least near it, like at base camp, sometime in the last seven years.


Off the top of my head. There may have been others that I wasn’t there for. These are the games that I have played at least once at work.

2 Notes

GAMES OF ART: 3 beautiful new games featuring fine art! by Gryphon and Eagle Games — Kickstarter

This is a Kickstarter thing where you can get a few different rewards; one of which is a game with a card that I wrote my name on.


I’m a big fan of Fantastiqa. You should play it. I can only imagine it would be enhanced by my chicken scratch crossing your eyes once in a while.

Kick it!

5 Notes

a game i played: Vöłūšpå

Not actually sure how many weird diacritical marks are actually in the title, but it’s a lot.



I guess it’s Völuspá.

It just seems silly.

Oh, here’s a tangent: Have you seen/used/been amazed by the WHAT TO PLAY app for your computer? It’s this amazing tool that syncs up with your BGG account so you can do a search of your collection based on whatever filters you choose. It’s fantastic, and I use it almost every single time I am going to play games.

For example, I had a buddy come over late, and we decided to try something new. So I filtered my collection by 0 plays/best with 2 players/60 minutes or under. It told me which 13 titles fell under those conditions, and we chose VœLû5pã.

Solid nerd gold. Please to check this app out.

Anyway, Völuspá is a fairly quick (30-45, I’d say, with experience) tile-laying game. Each tile you lay has the chance to score points, and most of them also have some funky bonus quality. Dragons can be placed on other tiles, Loki zeroes out the value of all adjacent tiles, etc.

After all the powers and whatnot, if the tile you’ve just placed represents the highest value in the row and/or column in which you placed it… in… you score points for each tile in the column. Or row. In which. It’s in. Jesus.

The rules explain it better than that. They must, since I was a couple beers in, and I still figured it out.

ANYWAY you go back and forth until the tiles are gone.

I’m not doing a good job of selling this, but it’s actually really fun. I thought it sounded dry from afar, but it plays quickly, and offers plenty of short-term planning opportunities. I’d peg it as a slightly meatier filler. We played with two, and I have to imagine it’d scale just fine all the way to five.

The theme is not exactly dripping wet, but it’s fun and the pictures are pretty and I liked it a lot and I really shouldn’t write reviews.

by Scott Caputo
2-5 players
45 minutes

4 Notes

a game i played: Smarty Party

(I don’t know if I’m going to actually “review” games on here or not. It makes me a little uncomfortable. There are a billion people doing it a billion times better. In fact, I hesitate to call the below “a review.” It’s more of “a description of a game, and also some of my opinions about it.”)

I played Pressure Point on the Never Not Funny telethon this last November. It was super fun, and we loved the game. You can watch it here. There are some swears and stuff, so, y’know, NSFW.

After doing the podcast, the fine folks at R&R Games sent me a bundle of games as a gift. I was especially excited about one of the games I had heard a lot about, but had never played: Smarty Party.

Smarty Party on BGG

As a rule, I dislike trivia games. I don’t like games which reward a ton of prior knowledge, with no chance for We Dummies to do well. Trivial Pursuit is my nightmare. Same thing goes for word games, by the way. Here’s a blog post I remember writing a few years ago:


I was in a super fun headspace.

Anyhoots, I have found a few word and trivia games that allow for points to be scored in a different way. Wits & Wagers, for example. You Must Be An Idiot. BuyWord. The aforementioned Pressure Point.

Smarty Party still wants you to know a bunch of stuff, but it plays differently enough that it doesn’t sting too much if you don’t. The goal is to avoid points. You gain points when you can’t name items from a list. That’s almost the whole game.

The lists are tough, sometimes. For me, anyway. I know jack shit about sports and geography, two favorite categories for this game. But again, it kinda doesn’t matter. The way it awards points is sort of interesting. Every time you miss an item from the list, you take a chip. There are seven chips; four 1s, two 2s, and a 3. After the chips are gone (or all of the items on the list are named (ha ha just kidding that happens pretty freaking rarely (in my group, anyway))), you score the points. BUT: whomever named the most recent correct item from the list gets to ditch their highest chip.

The current point leader (loser) is the category reader, and they bet whether the group will hit the requisite number of answers — if the list is ten items long, the goal may be set at six or something — and they gain (bad) or lose (yay) a point, respectively. It’s an excellent balancing mechanic, and it keeps the game fairly tight.

Anyway. Like I said, screw trivia games, usually. But I’ll play this one anytime.

by Pitt Crandlemire and Aaron Weissblum
3-8 players
45 minutes

1 Notes

Dead of Winter

You should read these rules. They are for a game that I’ve played twice, and it’s reallyreallyreally cool.

It’s genuinely not like other zombie games — which is a claim I know you’ve been burned by before, but I mean it this time.

12 Notes

Shut Up & Sit Down

You guys know about Shut Up & Sit Down, right?

Well, if you somehow don’t, please go to their site and read everything and watch all of their videos and listen to all of their podcasts. They are funny and smart and handsome and funny.

They’re one of the most unique voices in board games, which is kiiiiiiinda exciting.

I flew last weekend, and spent four hours catching up on their videos. Not exaggerating: I watched four. hours. straight. of these guys on a plane, and it was the opposite of boring.

Anyway. They’re the best, and I want to be friends with them. I met Quinns briefly at BGG, but we didn’t speak for long because I was nervous. Next time: HUGS


I'm assuming you've played Arkham Horror before, but were you going to include it on your Solo Games list?

Asked by martag02

I have played it. It was kind of a bummer. To be fair, we played with five or six, and started learning it at midnight. I’ve been told since that these were not ideal conditions.

I didn’t have much fun with it, is what I mean.

Plus, now that I’ve played Eldritch Horror (with three), I doubt I’ll ever go back to Arkham. I don’t need a game to be that fiddly, and Eldritch scratches any itch I think I’d ever even remotely have for that universe.

I’m also kind of a gaming wimp.

7 Notes

I’ve been playing games for a while. 

I’ve also been wearing sweet watches for a while.

I’ve been playing games for a while.

I’ve also been wearing sweet watches for a while.

4 Notes

speaking of negotiation games...

This is a thing I wrote last year about how I think negotiation games should be played (including Nothing Personal (see my last post)).

I *think* that’s how they’re meant to be played.

Oh, and I recently wrote a shorter thing on sort of the same topic, kind of. It’s in here somewhere. Near the bottom, I think. Probably because it’s not about video games.