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Showing posts from September, 2016

Deception: Murder in Hong Kong + Rogue Sriracha

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Deception: Murder in Hong Kong is an excellent party game for 4-12 players, which only takes 20 minutes or so to play and involves hidden roles, which are my favorite.  In the game, players take on the roles of investigators attempting to solve a murder case, but the twist is that the killer is one of the investigators!  Each player's role is randomly assigned at the start of play, and one person is randomly assigned the Murderer.  While the Investigators attempt to deduce the truth, the murderer must deceive and mislead.  The Forensic Scientist has the solution but cannot speak and can only express clues using special scene tiles, which the investigators (and the murderer) attempt to interpret the evidence. In order to succeed, the investigators must not only deduce the truth from the clues given, but also see through the misdirection being injected by the Murderer.  

To me, this resembles a blend of the game Mysterium (with silent clue giving) and The Resistance (hidden roles &am…

Carcassonne + Lost Abbey

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Carcassonne is an old-school game that came out back in 2000.  It was the Spiel des Jahres winner (Game of the Year Award) back in 2001, only 15 years before Code Names won in 2016.   Carcassonne is a simple tile-placement game in which the players draw and place a tile with a piece of southern French landscape on it. The tile might feature a city, road, abbey, grassland, or combination.  The tile must be placed adjacent to tiles that have already been played so that cities are connected to cities, roads to roads, etc. Having placed a tile, that player can then decide to place one of his meeples on one of the areas on it, which can score points for the owner of it when the structure is completed.

The game itself is easy to learn and play, which makes it great for families or as a gateway game for new gamers.  One of the highest scoring tiles in the game is an abbey, which is worth 9 points if you successfully complete it.  Speaking of abbeys, we paid tribute to those while drinking The…

Forbidden Island vs Hair of the Dog

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Let's first start with a tribute to Matt Leacock, who is the creator of the #1 board game of all time, Pandemic Legacy.  He also created standard Pandemic and Forbidden Desert, which are all great games that I've already reviewed. Today we are here to discuss the original game that came before all the others, and that is Forbidden Island.  Forbidden Island is the first and most basic of all three games, which was later followed by Forbidden Desert and Pandemic.  When you play it, you'll be shocked with how similar it is, but it's also a lot simpler and easier to learn than the others. Therefore, it's a perfect family game.
The game itself is a cooperative 2-4 player game where players take turns moving their pawns around the Island, which is built by arranging the beautiful tiles at the start. As the game progresses, more and more island tiles sink, becoming unavailable, and the pace increases. Players use strategies to keep the island from sinking, while trying to…

Code Names: Pictures + Maisel & Friends

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2016 Game of the Year Winner Code Names just released a new version called Code Names: Pictures where you play with pictures instead of words.  You can read my review of the standard Code Names here. Code Names Pictures isn't even available to the public yet, but I was able to play it via a friend who picked up a copy at Gen Con, which is the largest board game convention in the United States and just took place in August. 
Code Names Pictures has all the same rules as standard Code Names except you're playing with slightly fewer cards that are all pictures.  Now, the pictures themselves are slightly fantastical looking and reminded me a little bit of Dixit Cards (nowhere near the level uniqueness of Dixit); however, each card tends to have multiple images on it, such as a baby and a flower in the same image so the clue should be referencing either of them.  
My opinion: If you like Code Names, you'll like this game since it's practically the same. The major difference t…