Happy 4th of July weekend to everyone and welcome to week 32, I hope that everyone enjoyed the weekend. We had one of our really light gaming weeks, instead of gaming we went to a carnival, rode some rides, ate some food that is really bad for us on Friday. We followed that up on Saturday with a family Bar-b-que and lots of pool time. I did bring board games to that, but it rarely happens that I get to play when I go to my parent’s house, but I always bring them, so I re-read the rulebook to Thunder Alley and Baseball Highlights 2045 in hopes of getting them back to the table soon. After all that, it was fireworks, a couple games and then sleep. You all are mostly here to hear about the games, so let’s get to it!
Arboretum continues to see plays, which makes me quite happy, I was kind of worried that after the push to get a review of it out that it would suffer a bit and possibly get lost, but Gabby saved it as we played a couple games this week. First one was kind of our typical two player game, but Gabby kind of fell asleep and wasn’t paying enough attention to what I was doing and that allowed me to score 35 points to win 35-11. 35 is the highest point total we’ve recorded yet and I really don’t foresee us exceeding that unless someone just blanks out like Gabby did this time. Second match was on Saturday evening after the fireworks and my brain had kind of shut down towards the end. I had everything set up and was going to score a huge Dogwood path, but for some reason I just dropped the wrong card into the discard pile and Gabby was awake enough to pick it up and hold me from scoring that path. I still had enough to win 17-14, but it was a lot closer than our scores have been. In two player games, Gabby has a habit of over concentrating on one tree path in hopes of getting all 8 in a path, but most of the time, I am usually lucky enough to draw a card of that suit and just hold it the entire game and that happened again this time. But she is thinking outside the box a bit more and more as we play and stringing together paths a bit more that weave around a bit, using different tree types. She’ll get me soon I think.
Star Realms has slowed down a bit, I think partially because I am frustrated sitting at level 9, anytime I put together a run I get knocked right back down. In the league I am sitting at 2-4, got off to a rough start with a couple games where I just couldn’t buy anything, one game I think I had about 8 bases and only 2 ships, it was the worst game I think I have been a part of, my opponent just had to keep pounding on bases and buying all the ships and eventually had more than enough fire power to knock me out. Since then though things have been fairly even. This is just one of those frustrating things about the game for me, especially playing online, just seems that sometimes the algorithms don’t want you to get the cards that you are looking for. But thank you all for the challenges, once again I will always play and if I lose I will shoot a rematch, if I win, I always leave it up to you.
That’s all we played this week, not a whole lot of variety, but we had a whole lot of fun with what we played, two plays of Arboretum and at least fifteen plays of JurassAttack, not to mention the Star Realms.
Podcasts in my Ears
It’s been a bit since I have talked about the podcasts that I have been listening to, and I really should remedy that, so what better time than right now to do so. Over the past week I listened to a few podcasts, I enjoyed the most recent Dukes of Dice podcast where they wrapped up their time at Dice Tower Con which was a lot of fun to follow along with on Twitter. Tony and Edward over on Heavy Cardboard gave us their first interview episode where they got to quiz the two fine gentlemen who run Splotter Spellen and they also gave us a quick rundown of a game that I really want to try out, Brew Crafters. We had a fantastic episode of the Low Player Count podcast this week where they talked about dummy players in games, I couldn’t help but be a bit offended every time they referred to me as a dummy player. Punching Cardboard got me to try out a jazz album and I was quite surprised that I managed to listen to it most of the way through. Give a listen to The Epic from Kamasi Washington if you want to have something in your ears that is probably a bit different than what you normally listen to, well at least different for me. And I still want to get a copy of Kraftwagen. Other than that, I started a couple oddball podcasts that are new to me and not of the board game variety, I started Welcome to Night Vale, which I kind of describe as Twin Peaks’ public radio station and I also started Coverville, which is just a podcast about musical covers. This one has a HUGE backlog for me to dig through and enjoy. I just opened my podcast app on my phone and I saw that on Sunday evening I now have 21 podcasts in my queue to download, my ears will be begging for mercy by Friday, thank you all for keeping me sane.
Nothing new to back on Kickstarter last week, although I will be backing JurassAttack! when it hits on Friday the 10th of July. While I was writing out the notes to the podcast, The Gallerist finished it’s funding run on Kickstarter. Backers on Kickstarter put it at $83k and according to the update after funding, worldwide it hit $119k, which is pretty fantastic for a game from Vital Lacerda as I imagine it’s quite a bit different than what a lot of folks are used to playing, but it looks fantastic and Eagle Gryphon seems confident that here in the states we should see it around October barring any production or shipping issues. I’ll keep my fingers crossed. Carson City keeps chugging along with over $165k in US dollars funded with 9 days left in that one. They had a survey sent out to backers about whether folks were wanting to add metal coins to the game and whether they would be willing to do so at an added cost to the backers and while I think the vote may have been closer than they led us to believe, I think the right choice was made to not add them to the game and risk delays and added cost, I’m planning on picking up some nice poker chips for this one anyway. Hocus continues to chug along to $14k in funding with 18 days to go, I love that the game has no stretch goals, I can just push pledge and sit back and wait for updates without worrying about them, I’m sure Joshua and Grant probably feel the same way. Although it is really cool that we’ll all get a nice wooden first player marker to go with the game due to the support they have received so far. In far more saddening news, after I cleared some money by dropping my pledge for Epic, Monster Truck Mayhem was cancelled. It was really struggling and I’m really kind of at a loss as to why, fantastic looking game production and a horribly fun theme from a proven company should have meant no issues, but I just wonder if the lack of stretch goals and a super busy June/July hurt this one.
Nothing, nada, zilch. Only game that came to my doorstep was JurassAttack! and that’s probably a good thing, this section will definitely see some action next week though as I know of at least two games that are showing up, and one is kind of a surprise to me that I decided to pull the trigger, we’ll see how it goes over.
Geeklist and Forums
Was a lot of fun seeing Arboretum get so much action in the Geeklist last week, I hope that we’ve made you all who haven’t played it feel like you should. It really is a fantastic game. Was also really awesome to read the Dice Tower Convention wrap ups from folks who went, looks like you all had a fantastic time and got to play a lot of fun games with some great people! I’m really itching to get a copy of Royals as soon as it’s available from Dice Tower Essentials. Once again, every time I see Mage Knight on the table I get a pang of jealousy, I really need to just bite the bullet and learn it and play it a couple nights back to back to try to keep it all in my head. Landfall at Storm Con looked like a rousing success to me. I’m so back and forth over Marco Polo and this week’s geeklist didn’t do much to help me decide. Another couple middling reviews of Nations The Dice Game on the geeklist keep pushing it further down my wishlist and that kind of makes me sad, I was really looking forward to this one, but the good thing is, Stockpile keeps moving up! Lots of Spyfall I hope everyone is really enjoying it, I am not so envious that they have the game in as much as I am envious that you have a big enough regular group to play it with. Was awesome to see Keith’s Takenoko Collector’s Edition show up as as his birthday gift, love that game and presentation, wish we got it to the table more often. If you noticed Patrick Hillier missing from the geeklist last week, it’s because he was in the hospital, he’s home now but still recovering so send him some good thoughts and prayers to try to help speed up that recovery. Great week everyone!! Let’s do it again this week.
Next week for the podcast I am thinking about doing a list of games that I am looking forward to learning more about once Gencon comes around. I won’t be attending it this year, but I always love living vicariously through Eric Martin’s geeklist on Board Game Geek and through all the folks over on Twitter that just love to rub it in that they are there and we aren’t. But hey, we can’t be too angry, we’ve got #GenCant again this year. I’m trying to come up with a way that I can help with the festivities but thus far I am drawing a blank, hopefully something comes to mind soon as it’s really approaching rather quickly. Also next week I am hoping to play something with a bit more meat on it’s bones with Kerensa so I can get her back on here to talk a bit about gaming, along with AnnaBeth who I think is going to review something for us. She actually recorded a podcast on an old iPhone we have laying around where she reviewed One Night Ultimate Werewolf so I am hoping to be able to save that and salvage some from it, but also I want to get her on the mic and let her go and see what she has to say.
Without further ramblings, I will say goodnight and I’ll see you all on the Geek, Twitter and Facebook this week!!