Mixing digital tools with analogue games isn’t for everyone. Many of us in the modern hobby games community prefer to switch off our smartphones, get away from our computer monitors or otherwise “disconnect” and instead spend some quality time with people face-to-face, playing together. Some of us are happy to compromise and allow apps or other digital tools to take part in game nights, at least to some extent. In this article, I want to look at some of this new technology and what it can add to the playing experience.
You have been tasked with building the sustainable energy network of the future. Your goal is to connect wind farms, hydro-energy plants and other green power sources to each other, as well as different cities. You have to decide which part of the network needs attention first and what can wait until later. Take care though and make sure you don’t spread your workforce too thinly, but also avoid putting all of your light bulbs into one circuit. You want to end up making the best use of each and every Powerline by Dirk Henn from Queen Games.
The concepts of replayability and variety are often considered to be one and the same. I have previously looked at whether replayability and variety are linked. My article “Variable replayability” came to the conclusion that those two concepts are not necessarily related. A game can offer a lot of variety, but little replayability and vice versa, a game can be very replayable without much variety. However, in this article, I want to look at whether variety should be important to players or whether we should focus more on replayability.
As a member of the lowest caste in our colour-coded society, I worked extremely hard every day. I believed that my blood and sweat would create a better world for my children. I prayed that one day, Mars’ surface would become habitable. However, my caste and I had been betrayed. I and others like me were nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class. So now was the time for my caste to revolt. It was time for the Red Rising by Jamey Stegmaier and Alexander Schmidt from Stonemaier Games.
There seems to be quite an overlap between people who love playing board games and those who love playing video games. Many actually enjoy playing both. There also seems to be a growing overlap between the hobby and video game industries themselves. So in this article, I want to look at what synergies there might be between the two and how both can benefit from each other.
In the Qing dynasty, camels were one of the main means of transport. People would travel for days to cross deserts, wilderness and plains to reach the city of Pingyao, where they would trade their wares to increase their wealth. So an agency of bankers was established to help grow the economy and slowly build up a financial network. Soon, wealth began to accumulate in the city of Pingyao: First Banks of China by Wu Shuang from Jing Studio.
As a tabletop game enthusiast, I’ve always been fascinated by the endless possibilities of creating new and exciting gameplay experiences. So when I set out to design my own game, Fog of Adventures, I knew I wanted to push the boundaries and explore the role of AI in the development process.
You had received a mysterious invitation to the old mansion on top of the hill, which had lain empty for decades – if not centuries. You were about to throw the letter in the bin, along with the junk mail, when you hesitated. It could be interesting to see who else would turn up. After all, there was this old story linking your ancestors to a Betrayal at House on the Hill: 3rd Edition by Dave Chalker, Banana Chan, Noah Cohen, Bruce Glassco, Brian Neff, Will Sobel and Jabari Weathers from Avalon Hill.
War games are often seen as controversial. Replaying the atrocities that occurred during a large-scale conflict seems completely inappropriate. Condensing the huge amount of suffering, death and destruction into a game of pushing tiles around a board and rolling dice or playing cards seems perverse. So in this article, I try to put everything into a bit more context and tease out the pros and cons of war games and how controversial they really are when compared to some of the other games in our vast hobby.
Yes, it’s time for my annual list of the best games of the year. As has become tradition, I also announce which game won the accolade of the Top Table Award, which is now in its fourth year. However, you have to be patient for a little while longer, while I list the best five board games of 2022 in reverse order.