The Big Board-Gaming Catch-All

Suprised no one's posted this yet. Sure, nobody around here plays the game, but it's not every day a board game makes national news.

Gravey wrote:

So when I say I'm interested in a good space empire card* game, I think it's totally valid to compare RftG and Eminent Domain. Which best evokes the feel (i.e. best uses its mechanics, irrespective of what they are, to evoke the feel) of building a space empire?

Ah ok, I think I follow now. I think my problem was that my answer would honestly be "neither". I agree with both Chumpy and Demyx that the theme feels pasted on in both. Take RFTG - the role selection mechanic doesn't speak to me thematically at all, the cards in your hands are an abstraction of some kind of resource, but also being the things you build doesn't really make sense, etc.

So when I look at two games where I think the theme is pasted on to begin with, it makes more sense for me to make comparisons based on mechanics, since the theme doesn't really matter for either.

Overall, I do think I look at games the same way, though. My favorite games are those I think have mechanics which evoke the theme, I just might be harsher regarding the mechanics.

Minarchist wrote:

Suprised no one's posted this yet. Sure, nobody around here plays the game, but it's not every day a board game makes national news.

It's not a mechanical change; Hasbro is doing it for the publicity.

That said, Hasbro has been doing some interesting things on their other games (Battleship with hexes, Risk Legacy, etc.) so maybe someday they'll manage to make a version of Monopoly that isn't horribly broken?

Minarchist wrote:

Suprised no one's posted this yet. Sure, nobody around here plays the game, but it's not every day a board game makes national news.

I voted for the cat - happy to see it won

Theme matters to me in RftG! I don't think I'd enjoy it so much without the illustrations it has. Maybe I just have an overactive imagination but I can imagine building a space empire of sorts. It's more thematic than Dominion anyway >_>

Gremlin wrote:

Hasbro is doing it for the publicity.

It's also not the first time they've added or removed tokens from the game according to the guy who runs BGG's news blog.

Gravey wrote:

I need some sort of Geekcagematch function:

Space empire card game: Eminent Domain vs Race for the Galaxy
Build a castle game: A Castle for All Seasons vs Caylus

(Those were a couple more I remembered.)

Another good one would be Eclipse vs. Twilight Imperium. Pretty clear win for Eclipse in my eyes, but I suppose a bit more experience with TI would be required for a full judgement.

On Eclipse vs TI, we have a "hard core" TI player in our group, and he's finding Eclipse to be easier to get people to play, which means its more likely to be played.

Once you have everything sorted out, it can go from a 30 min setup to 5 min setup.

Speaking of which, my population trays are in the mail Found a whole bunch of people offering to sell them for ~$5 a piece, and then I found a guy that posted his SVG and pointed to outfab.com to get a set of 15 for $35 shipped.

Now that I see how easy this can be, I might just start designing my own stuff and outsource the fabbing...

Eclipse vs TI is like comparing a quickie in the backseat vs a weekend-long lovefest in a fancy hotel room.

sure.. often the quickie is all you have the time/money/energy for.. but it's a pale substitute for the real thing.

Dysplastic wrote:
Gravey wrote:

So when I say I'm interested in a good space empire card* game, I think it's totally valid to compare RftG and Eminent Domain. Which best evokes the feel (i.e. best uses its mechanics, irrespective of what they are, to evoke the feel) of building a space empire?

Ah ok, I think I follow now. I think my problem was that my answer would honestly be "neither". I agree with both Chumpy and Demyx that the theme feels pasted on in both.

Also agree. Neither evoke the "space empire" theme very well in their mechanics. Race for the Galaxy may get a slight edge here from me, but only just. I feel like the cards and the bonuses they give to the actions you have can tell a slightly better story, but you have to work pretty hard to get that out of the game. Neither are games that you'll walk away from thinking, "Wow, I feel like I just built an awesome space empire!" I'm not sure that card game exists yet.

Thanks for the ED/RftG discussion, that's a perfect example what I'd be looking for in a cage match! It's sort of a squishy feely discussion, but makes hashing it out really interesting.

To make things even more idiosyncratic: I'm trying to compare Caylus and A Castle for All Seasons. Most comparisons I can find pit one (usually Caylus) against Pillars of the Earth. But I want to build a castle, not a cathedral. Is there really a material difference when it comes to the action? Maybe not. But that's how I feel.

Dysplastic wrote:

Ah ok, I think I follow now. I think my problem was that my answer would honestly be "neither". I agree with both Chumpy and Demyx that the theme feels pasted on in both. Take RFTG - the role selection mechanic doesn't speak to me thematically at all, the cards in your hands are an abstraction of some kind of resource, but also being the things you build doesn't really make sense, etc.

That's a fair answer too; I don't know everything that's out there, so it's basically "I've heard of game X and game Y, they seem similar in theme and scope, I wonder which is 'better'?" (leaving "better-ness" as an exercise to the commenters).

Gunner wrote:

Another good one would be Eclipse vs. Twilight Imperium. Pretty clear win for Eclipse in my eyes, but I suppose a bit more experience with TI would be required for a full judgement.

Yeah, Eclipse looks beautiful, and is a prime contender for when I have the time for another epic game.

-----

In other news, I won my first BGG contest! A Wings of Glory: WW1 Duel Pack, a contest I couldn't have been more interested in.

Demyx wrote:

Theme matters to me in RftG! I don't think I'd enjoy it so much without the illustrations it has. Maybe I just have an overactive imagination but I can imagine building a space empire of sorts. It's more thematic than Dominion anyway >_>

SPACE RAVES! SPACE RAVES! That's all you need to know about RftG.

Edit: I've played both TI and Eclipse a fair amount. I'm surprised you prefer Eclipse, Gunner. There is a more defined economy in Eclipse, as far as fiddly bits on the board, but I feel that I get a better strategical experience with TI.
Eclipse's only major advantage, in my mind, is it ends faster. You could put a turn limit in the same way in TI. I just prefer the accomplishment victory points over the territory holding and stuff as it stands in Eclipse. Crazier sh*t just happens in TI.

Dreaded Gazebo wrote:
Dysplastic wrote:
Gravey wrote:

So when I say I'm interested in a good space empire card* game, I think it's totally valid to compare RftG and Eminent Domain. Which best evokes the feel (i.e. best uses its mechanics, irrespective of what they are, to evoke the feel) of building a space empire?

Ah ok, I think I follow now. I think my problem was that my answer would honestly be "neither". I agree with both Chumpy and Demyx that the theme feels pasted on in both.

Also agree. Neither evoke the "space empire" theme very well in their mechanics. Race for the Galaxy may get a slight edge here from me, but only just. I feel like the cards and the bonuses they give to the actions you have can tell a slightly better story, but you have to work pretty hard to get that out of the game. Neither are games that you'll walk away from thinking, "Wow, I feel like I just built an awesome space empire!" I'm not sure that card game exists yet.

In that case, I move to my next set of criteria: mechanics. Would I want a space-esque Dominion or a space-esque San Juan...?

In a best case scenario, I found myself amazed the first time I played Dungeon Petz. I really got that feeling that I was wrangling baby monsters, trying to keep them healthy and happy and stay ahead of their unpredictability. All the wooden cubes and cardboard and points melted into the background, and I was totally immersed in managing food, cleaning up poop, meeting my monsters' needs, getting ready for exhibitions... Maximizing game values worked in total concert with the action I was imagining, so that articulating the imaginary action was identical to the game action (e.g. "I've got to move him out of that poopy stall—I know he's usually hungry but I can't risk him getting sick when I've got the perfect buyer coming up.").

Gravey wrote:

In that case, I move to my next set of criteria: mechanics. Would I want a space-esque Dominion or a space-esque San Juan...?

Not to be too negative on the subject of Eminent Domain, because it isn't THAT bad, but I found it to be significantly inferior to Dominion in terms of mechanics.

It's been a long time since I've played so I can't remember my specific complaints, but lack of card variety is certainly an issue there. Dominion is just the gift that keeps on giving.

Speaking of Dominion, I played Dark Ages for the first time last night, specifically an all-Dark Ages setup. Some really interesting cards there! Counterfeit + Bandit Camp is crazy-go-nuts. I can't wait to get a copy of this for our collection.

MilkmanDanimal wrote:

Can people just stop making games I want for a little while? I've been waffling on Legendary, and think the Netrunner purchase will put it off for a bit, but I see Legendary every week when I take the boy to D&D night at the local game store, just staring at me, the heartless bastard. My kids are currently going through the 90s X-Men cartoon, so the presence of Magneto and such would make them seriously play the thing.

Also, the wife asked the kids to go through the game cabinet this weekend to clear up space, and they pulled out all the Parker Brothers/Hasbro/Milton Bradley games. Sorry, Battleship, all those, now gone. My wife wanted to know why, and my ten-year-old explained "Those games are dumb, they're all luck. You don't even need to think to play them."

GEEK PROUD.

Smart kid!

By the way, what qualifies as our LFGS out in Eagan? I haven't found a good local one, I tend to lug myself all the way down to the source when I need something that Amazon can't ship.

drdoak wrote:

I've played both TI and Eclipse a fair amount. I'm surprised you prefer Eclipse, Gunner. There is a more defined economy in Eclipse, as far as fiddly bits on the board, but I feel that I get a better strategical experience with TI.
Eclipse's only major advantage, in my mind, is it ends faster. You could put a turn limit in the same way in TI. I just prefer the accomplishment victory points over the territory holding and stuff as it stands in Eclipse. Crazier sh*t just happens in TI.

Maybe it's because I haven't gotten a chance to play any TI expansions, but I found the ratio of interesting decisions to time played to be way too low in TI. Every action in Eclipse is packed with trade offs and I'm continually discovering cleverly elegant nuances that tie everything in the design together. So while I appreciate the shorter play time for the practicality of getting it on the table, even setting that aside I also prefer the overall pacing and general experience Eclipse has to offer.

Sounds like we need to get another game of TI in though. How about I leave for Ohio in a couple of hours? Clearly starting around midnight is something no one will regret.

drdoak wrote:

Edit: I've played both TI and Eclipse a fair amount. I'm surprised you prefer Eclipse, Gunner. There is a more defined economy in Eclipse, as far as fiddly bits on the board, but I feel that I get a better strategical experience with TI.
Eclipse's only major advantage, in my mind, is it ends faster. You could put a turn limit in the same way in TI. I just prefer the accomplishment victory points over the territory holding and stuff as it stands in Eclipse. Crazier sh*t just happens in TI.

I've only played Eclipse once and have played a fair amount of TI3, so take my thoughts with a grain of salt, but I agree. Eclipse felt somewhat "stale" to me, and I think it's in some part due to the 9 round limitation. I understand it puts a time limit on the game, but I think it also limits the amount of interesting stuff that can happen. Like drdoak, I find the accomplishment victory system in TI3 to be more exciting. It results in more memorable things happening which I think makes for a more satisfying game experience. The "unknown" of the game end leads to more interesting play in my mind, and I think the variety of objectives mixed with player powers and tech tree choices gives each faction more distinct personality.

Both do interesting things and implement the theme well, but TI3 hits that "feel" while Eclipse doesn't. Maybe my thoughts on that would change given more experience with Eclipse, though. Sadly I didn't enjoy it enough to go out of my way to give it another play.

I'm curious to see how Hegemonic turns out. The Kickstarter just finished up the other day. I was tempted to hop on board, but after watching the how-to-play videos the game looked a little to bland for me. It seemed more abstract strategy than thematic space epic. Which is fine, just not what I'm looking for

Gunner wrote:
drdoak wrote:

I've played both TI and Eclipse a fair amount. I'm surprised you prefer Eclipse, Gunner. There is a more defined economy in Eclipse, as far as fiddly bits on the board, but I feel that I get a better strategical experience with TI.
Eclipse's only major advantage, in my mind, is it ends faster. You could put a turn limit in the same way in TI. I just prefer the accomplishment victory points over the territory holding and stuff as it stands in Eclipse. Crazier sh*t just happens in TI.

Maybe it's because I haven't gotten a chance to play any TI expansions, but I found the ratio of interesting decisions to time played to be way too low in TI. Every action in Eclipse is packed with trade offs and I'm continually discovering cleverly elegant nuances that tie everything in the design together. So while I appreciate the shorter play time for the practicality of getting it on the table, even setting that aside I also prefer the overall pacing and general experience Eclipse has to offer.

Sounds like we need to get another game of TI in though. How about I leave for Ohio in a couple of hours? Clearly starting around midnight is something no one will regret.

Name the weekend, Gunner. I'll play by phone if I have to.

Question on Netrunner -- am I right that the expansions so far are not new decks, but just individual bunches of cards you could use in deckbuilding? I really dont have much interest in deckbuilding (here, or anywhere) any more, so thats less interesting to me. I like the summoner wars model better, where there are occasional beckbuilding mini expansions but new factions in the main expansions.

Or do I have it wrong?

rabbit wrote:

Question on Netrunner -- am I right that the expansions so far are not new decks, but just individual bunches of cards you could use in deckbuilding? I really dont have much interest in deckbuilding (here, or anywhere) any more, so thats less interesting to me. I like the summoner wars model better, where there are occasional beckbuilding mini expansions but new factions in the main expansions.

Or do I have it wrong?

Wow, I never thought that the expansions would be for the deckbuilding aspect and not simply new factions/runners to play. I'm with you, Rabbit, it would totally kill my desire to buy them as I just don't have the time to think about building decks anymore.

Nevin73 wrote:
rabbit wrote:

Question on Netrunner -- am I right that the expansions so far are not new decks, but just individual bunches of cards you could use in deckbuilding? I really dont have much interest in deckbuilding (here, or anywhere) any more, so thats less interesting to me. I like the summoner wars model better, where there are occasional beckbuilding mini expansions but new factions in the main expansions.

Or do I have it wrong?

Wow, I never thought that the expansions would be for the deckbuilding aspect and not simply new factions/runners to play. I'm with you, Rabbit, it would totally kill my desire to buy them as I just don't have the time to think about building decks anymore.

I was under the impression that Netrunner is all about deckbuilding? At least that's all my friends who play talk about--getting expansions to make the best deck.

It is individual bunches of cards that are used for deckbuilding. However, I'm not a big fan of deckbuilding either (outside of a game anyway), and I feel that Netrunner's deckbuilding isn't too bad to manage since you need to maintain similar amounts of the same types of card. For example, new corporate agendas can only really be swapped out with other corporate agendas; ice generally need to be swapped out with ice, etc. It's not so bad if you replace like with like and don't get into cross faction stuff.

I kind of think that introducing new factions all the time wouldn't work very well for Netrunner.

Johnvanjim wrote:
MilkmanDanimal wrote:

Can people just stop making games I want for a little while? I've been waffling on Legendary, and think the Netrunner purchase will put it off for a bit, but I see Legendary every week when I take the boy to D&D night at the local game store, just staring at me, the heartless bastard. My kids are currently going through the 90s X-Men cartoon, so the presence of Magneto and such would make them seriously play the thing.

Also, the wife asked the kids to go through the game cabinet this weekend to clear up space, and they pulled out all the Parker Brothers/Hasbro/Milton Bradley games. Sorry, Battleship, all those, now gone. My wife wanted to know why, and my ten-year-old explained "Those games are dumb, they're all luck. You don't even need to think to play them."

GEEK PROUD.

Smart kid!

By the way., what qualifies as our LFGS out in Eagan? I haven't found a good local one, I tend to lug myself all the way down to the source when I need something that Amazon can't ship.

There's a Games by James in the Burnsville mall, plus a little place called Armored Ogre Games over in Inver Grove Heights where I take the boy for D&D night. I like the place, but let's just say it's not the cheapest place to buy games. You pay your "FLGS tax".

Nevin73 wrote:
rabbit wrote:

Question on Netrunner -- am I right that the expansions so far are not new decks, but just individual bunches of cards you could use in deckbuilding? I really dont have much interest in deckbuilding (here, or anywhere) any more, so thats less interesting to me. I like the summoner wars model better, where there are occasional beckbuilding mini expansions but new factions in the main expansions.

Or do I have it wrong?

Wow, I never thought that the expansions would be for the deckbuilding aspect and not simply new factions/runners to play. I'm with you, Rabbit, it would totally kill my desire to buy them as I just don't have the time to think about building decks anymore.

The data packs are not pre-built decks, so they are directly targeted at deckbuilding. They're a Reinforcement Pack, to continue the Summoner Wars analogy, but not centered on a specific faction. However, they do come with 1-2 new identities (since there's 5 packs in the current cycle and 7 factions total), but it's up to the buyer to build a deck around the new identities (or just use the base set deck if you want). For what it's worth, we've had fun taking the base set decks as a starting point and tweaking from there, but I get that's not everyone's cup of tea.

I am hoping they will add additional factions through bigger expansions (ie. everything in one box instead of piecemeal distribution with the current expansion set), but I'm not 100% sure there's more strategies they can highlight with the factions that aren't already covered with the 7 in the base set.

McIrishJihad wrote:

Speaking of which, my population trays are in the mail Found a whole bunch of people offering to sell them for ~$5 a piece, and then I found a guy that posted his SVG and pointed to outfab.com to get a set of 15 for $35 shipped

You only need 9 of those right? I could find a home for the other 6 if you want to differ some of the cost.

I just got Mage Wars, Battle Line, A Few Acres of Snow, Race for the Galaxy, Roll Through the Ages, Alien Frontiers: Factions, Netrunner: Trace Amount, Evil Baby Orphanage, and Pitchcar. Gotta love that new game smell.

Re. Deckbuilding: I would say if you don't have time for lots of deck building you should look at the new Star Wars LCG it does it's deck building in "pods" where there are 6 cards that are a "pod" and you select ten "pods" to make your deck.

MonoCheli wrote:
McIrishJihad wrote:

Speaking of which, my population trays are in the mail Found a whole bunch of people offering to sell them for ~$5 a piece, and then I found a guy that posted his SVG and pointed to outfab.com to get a set of 15 for $35 shipped

You only need 9 of those right? I could find a home for the other 6 if you want to differ some of the cost.

Sent you a PM.

People, please! 'Tis writ in the starts that Eclipse is the TI3-killer and that RftG is actually very well themed, if you look at the planets and their different abilties. Of course, I've been railing against TI3 for most of a decade, and Eclipse, though it is a bit dry, is the perfect refutation. I love a good space opera strategy game, but TI3 is a thinly-themed, reassembled Puerto Rico adaptation that is ten times as long.

Natus wrote:

People, please! 'Tis writ in the starts that Eclipse is the TI3-killer and that RftG is actually very well themed, if you look at the planets and their different abilties. Of course, I've been railing against TI3 for most of a decade, and Eclipse, though it is a bit dry, is the perfect refutation. I love a good space opera strategy game, but TI3 is a thinly-themed, reassembled Puerto Rico adaptation that is ten times as long.

And you can play for 6 hours and lose on a dice roll and the turn of the card. I will never get over that. However it makes for a good tale, although not as good as the time I scored 109 points in 7 Wonders or when we atucally beat a Gears of War level.

Natus wrote:

People, please! 'Tis writ in the starts that Eclipse is the TI3-killer and that RftG is actually very well themed, if you look at the planets and their different abilties. Of course, I've been railing against TI3 for most of a decade, and Eclipse, though it is a bit dry, is the perfect refutation. I love a good space opera strategy game, but TI3 is a thinly-themed, reassembled Puerto Rico adaptation that is ten times as long.

Actually I heard it the opposite way around. Where Eclipse is a disguised Euro game while TI is a more of a 4x game. That being said I've tried neither and only watch some it online. That being said I'd love to try both of them, although the play time seems insane for TI.

Watching reviews are dangerous for your wallet.