Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Game Night Blog Carnival: 7 Wonders

7 Wonders is a board / card game that has a unique twist. The gameplay is very simple but there are a ton of strategies. I've played this one with a number of others from hardcore gamers to casual players and we are still exploring all the different strategies. This does not stop us from having fun at all with 7 Wonders. It is a game from Repos Production and is good for 3-7 players and takes only about half an hour to finish a game.

The game starts off with everyone getting a Wonder that they can built if they wish, but it produces a resource right away. Each player starts with 7 cards in hand that is distributed from a common deck. Each player picks a card they wish to build and keep it face down. At the same time, each player builds that card, paying other players if they need resources from them. The 6 remaining cards are passed to the player next to you and you pick one of those you wish to build. This happens in 3 rounds (or Ages), switching directions every round, and points are totaled at the end of the game.

I got to play it at Gencon and fell in love completely. My friends felt the same way as they played more games into the night and eventually getting in around 2 a.m. Back in Illinois, 7 Wonders was introduced to a few of my more casual friends and it got the same response. Since then, we have found it online and continue to play through this online client.

There is not much interaction with your opponents. Military victories and defeats are counted at the end of each round, but it won't hurt you until the end of the game where points are counted up. There are many different paths to pursue (commerce, technology, etc) but each one can give you points at the end. The pieces in this game are all for scorekeeping and exchanging money for materials so no need to remember where they were if you bump the table.

I highly recommend this game, and it contends with Dominion for my top spot. With a few more plays it might even overtake it. This is game is great for everyone that it is recommended for (ages 10 and up, although younger is possible too). A quick search online can find the client, but playing it in person is just too much fun.

Don't forget to click the links below and check out the rest of the games being featured by my fellow bloggers. Happy gaming.

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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Game Review: Arena of Heroes

My last post about Kickstarter was a nice transition into this board game review. Arena of Heroes is currently up, but I was lucky enough to snag a review copy of the game, just for you guys. I feel big time now. To check out the Kickstarter page, click here.

I wanted to give this one a fair chance by playing with gamers and non-gamers. So the box was opened, cards were shuffled and each group got to experience the game. Every turn you replenish your hand to 5 cards from a common deck. The cards allow you to move, attack, defend and equip items. Each player starts with 10 life and each successful hit takes off a point of damage unless in the center square, which is 2 damage. For the most part, you need to be adjacent to an enemy to deal attack. The rules are quite simple and the pdf version is available here.

Playing with my each group, the first few turns of the first game took a little while to grasp the concepts. In the middle of both first games, we had it down and knew what to do. There was a big difference though following that.

The gamer group is competitive, and so there would be turns where people were standing one space away for a few turns just recycling their hand or most of their hand for great draws. The non-gamers made use of what they had. I change my playstyle based on who I was playing with, and had a lot more fun with my non-gamer friends. We ended up playing more with that group as well because the games were shorter.

I had much more fun with my non-gaming friends because they are not as competitive. My gamer
friends didn't leave so much up to chance which took some fun out of it. I recommend this for the more casual gamers and non-gamer crowd. If you are competitive, it is also worth checking out. There is a short time left to fund it, so be sure to check it out soon.

Arena of Heroes Kickster Page (including an actual play video)

Monday, August 15, 2011

Kickstarter Projects

I've been exploring Kickstarter recently and it's interesting. Kickstarter is a website that was established in 2009 that is used to help creative projects get off the ground. Users submit their ideas and they are accepted or rejected. Once accepted, you set up a goal of how much your project needs, set up incentives, and start getting your project out there. Other users then can donate to your cause and help you meet your goal. Money only exchanges hands if the project is successful.

They have a good number of categories including gaming, technology, books, film, and others. I just came across this site and a few of my Twitter friends have used this with their games and other projects. I recommend checking this out whether you have a great idea and need funding or just want to check out and back some great projects.