1861: Russia / 1867: Canada – I’ve been wanting to jump into the 18xx world for awhile as I love auctions, stocks and economic manipulation in games. The theme of most 18xx has never set my world on fire and the look of most games remind me of GMT war counter games but this bundle looks like it offered me the best of both worlds with good aesthetics and two separate but simple entries into the world. If I get into the game, I’ll have two separate games to let me get introduced to the 18xx world and if I don’t like one, I can try the other. If I don’t like both, someone else will benefit off of my mistake.
AdapTableTop – A Baltimore City row home offers a lot of benefits but space is not one of them. I’m incredibly intrigued by what AdapTableTop is offering and think it could be a solution to larger games (such as TI4 and Warhammer 40k) that continually plague our dining room table. I’ve shared our plays of TI4 and the table is so congested with just the pieces of the game that it makes the experience stressful as players try to not bump anything. This is the KS that I’m most excited about playing around with. I’m a huge fan of accessories that make the game experience better and I think this project will offer an amazing upgrade for me…or so I hope.
Blume – I love abstract games and Blume looks to scratch an itch in the genre that I haven’t experienced yet. I was able to play Blume two years ago at PAX Unplugged and vowed to back it on the spot. Shortly after, I had the opportunity.
Lawyer Up – I love interesting themes and the idea of arguing in front of a court of law offers so many possibilities gameplay wise, I’m shocked this hasn’t been released before. Finding two-player only games that fit our definition of middle weight has proven difficult. Games like Patchwork, while great, aren’t real brain burners and games like Twilight Struggle, while phenomenal, are too extensive for our limited free time (unfortunately). I’m hoping this follows Watergate, a great two-player game that really scratched our itch.
Nemesis Lockdown – I’m actually going in on the Core Bundle as the time of this posting (but am constantly antagonizing my decision and debating switching to a pledge just for Lockdown). Nemesis is a semi-cooperative Aliens-esque space horror game that screams theme. I have probably watched more playthroughs online of this game than any other and I hate that I de-pledged the original Kickstarter. It looks like it will cross off several items on my want list for gaming and my only concern about Nemesis is not whether or not I’ll enjoy it but how much regret I have at not going all in on everything.
Pax Pamir Reprint – Pax Pamir 2nd Edition was the game when it hit tables and the fear of missing out definitely impacted my decision to back the reprint. I watched several reviews (and even asked people from my group to watch a few) and the consensus was…we might be into this? That’s not the best answer when shelling out money for a board game but the buzz about this game hopefully means that even if it isn’t my cup of tea, I can swap it with someone at an upcoming convention for something that’s more our style. This should be arriving imminently.
Rallyman: Dirt – I love Rallyman GT and have played a ton on Boardgamearena. As I missed the original project for GT, I knew I was going to back Dirt and as long as GT is available on BGA, I’ll be happy to have a slightly different version available to play analog.
Smack Talk Showdown: Lewd ADDitude and 2nd Edition – I have reviewed Smack Talk Showdown in the past and it’s one of my favorite party games. The game is entirely group dependent but when it hits, it’s a home run. We’ve really enjoyed everything that the base game offers and it was a no-brainer to back the expansion (even though my original review said I’d pass on it). The reason for the instant back is the upgraded yellow cards (which are hard to read in the first edition copy). The cards coming with the expansion are a bonus and will be utilized but I’d be lying if that was the main reason I wanted to get involved with this campaign.
Stop the Train! – I really like games with social deduction and traitors but finding the right balance between being a game and a social evening has been difficult. Games like Battlestar Galatica and Dead of Winter just tend to be too specialized in theme or too cumbersome to really navigate until you have a play or two under your belt. I think Stop the Train will bridge that gap as the game has defined rules with a streamlined mechanic of play. I make fun of train themed games earlier this post but not many games I play deal with runaway trains. I really hope this game lives up to the hype I have in my head.
Studio X: Mobile Miniature Painting Studio – Similar to AdaptTableTop, space savers are key for me and as I don’t have a dedicated space for painting miniatures, having the option to pack up and go is huge for me. I currently use a wooden box from Michael’s for my paint and supplies that kinda works but I’d rather have something better designed for my needs. This project checks all the boxes and with all my downtime due to the year that 2020 has become, I’ve found myself painting more (we even have a weekly video chat for painting our Warhammer miniatures). This will help immensely.
Tiny Epic Pirates – Tiny Epic had me sold with the Pirates (another favorite theme) and I knew I was going to back this as well when I saw the rondel mechanic. Rondel’s are one of my favorite mechanics in board gaming and I don’t get to play games with them enough (like Crusader’s and Seeland). I might be more excited for this than I am Tiny Epic Dinosaurs.
World Wide Wrestling: Second Edition – It’s funny that just a short time before the campaign for this RPG was launched, I found a first edition set at a local thrift store. I’ve been reading it in my spare time and trying to coordinate the first game but I already know I want to support this campaign for the simple reason is that I want my hobbies to intersect more. I wish there were more board games that dealt with professional wrestling as a theme. I feel like it has so much potential due to the pageantry and athleticism. It could be taken seriously or as a farce.
What have I recently received?
Dinogenics: Controlled Chaos and 2nd Edition – Dinosaurs are one of my favorite things but it isn’t well recognized as a theme in the board gaming world (in my opinion). I was super excited for Dinosaur Island and while I appreciate what it is, I wanted more of the park management as opposed to the genetics side of the theme. I’m hoping Dinogenics offers the experience I was hoping to get from Dinosaur Island. If it doesn’t, I’ll at least have some sweet dinosaur meeples to play around with.
The Search for Planet X – I am always hesitant about games that have apps integral to their gameplay but I love deduction games like Tobago. The Search for Planet X makes me think of Tobago in space and looks like a fun educational-esque game.
Tiny Epic Dinosaurs – I’ve played a good amount of the Tiny Epic games and while not all are winners, I’ve enjoyed them for their price point and production values (as well as gameplay). Tiny Epic Zombies was my last deluxified version and I knew if they ever hit any of my other favorite themes, I’d be ready to jump on the bandwagon. Dinosaurs offers that as the theme is one of my favorite subjects. The worker placement mechanic is a tried and true formula to follow and while I already had one dinosaur park builder in my KS haul, I’m hoping this fills the niche for a shorter version of Dinogenics or Dinosaur Island.
What was I close to backing but decided against?
Terraforming Mars Deluxe – If you check my reviews, comments, social media posts, etc., one thing I said I would back on day one was a all-in-one box for Terraforming Mars. When it launched, I was eager to hand over my money but chose not to. I didn’t want the 3D tiles and the price was higher than what I originally thought. I’m hoping now that one of the insert companies comes out with a deluxe crate like Broken Token with Fire Rescue.
Kemet: Blood and Sand – I have heard a lot of good things about Kemet and was super excited for a new 1.5 edition but the community seems split on the upgrades. I also can’t say I’m wowed by anything I’ve seen. With the price commitment, I may be more keen to wait until it hits the retail shelves; especially considering who knows when organized board game meet ups can return.