No Win Situation – a look at victory conditions in board games (Topic Discussion)

Whether we play competitive or cooperative games, we all expect someone to be the winner. Even if it's "the game" who wins in a cooperative game. In fact, there is usually a single winner or a team in team games. Most games will list one or multiple tie-breakers to decide who is the ultimate winner. So the idea of victory conditions has become second nature to most of us in the board game hobby. Yet, there are games that don't elect a winner and in this article, I want to talk about what this might feel like.

Crumbs!: The Sandwich Filler Game (Saturday Review)

It's lunchtime and the queue outside your cafe is rather long. Everyone wants you to hurry up and make them their favourite sandwich from your hugely popular menu. The pressure is on to line up slices of bread and pile them high with lettuce, tomatoes, eggs, tuna or ham. Some want theirs even toasted. Well... Crumbs!: The Sandwich Filler Game by J. Antscherl from Minerva Tabletop Games.

Fast & Furious: Highway Heist (Saturday Review)

First gear. Screams of tortured rubber and plumes of acrid smoke fill the air as we barrel over the brow of the hill, rapidly advancing on our target. The tank is an incongruous sight, squat and menacing in the middle of the highway, two shiny black beetles flanking each side: SUVs filled with seemingly infinite numbers of violent goons, like clown cars of criminality.

Increased Cooperation – the popularity of cooperative games (Topic Discussion)

I always used to be very much a competitive player. Pitting my wit against other people was my thing. I would usually lose games and still do, but it was always a lot of fun. Cooperative games really only came into my life when our daughter was young enough to play games with us that weren't just roll-and-move. I remember our first game of Forbidden Island, which we all really enjoyed and played many times since. So in this article, I want to explore why cooperative games have become so popular in recent years.

Round the Outside – tracking scores in board games (Topic Discussion)

Pretty much every hobby game contains some sort of score which measures who is in the lead and decides who wins the game. That's undoubtedly true for competitive games, but sometimes also for cooperative ones. The score can be in the form of victory points, glory points, reputation, money or something else or even a mix of different things. Some games keep track of players' scores throughout the game, others count everything up at the end and there are also games that have a mix of in-game scoring and end-of-game points. In this article, I want to look at these different ways of score keeping and how it affects gameplay experience.

Castle Panic (Saturday Review)

"Troll!" came the shout from the battlements. "Where?!" we shouted back. "Southeast!" was the reply. Darn it. We didn't have any archers defending our fortress in that direction. It was fortunate that we still had time before we had to deal with the next wave of attackers. We were already in over our heads fending off orcs and goblins at the northern end of the bastion. Things were slowly becoming too chaotic. It was a real Castle Panic by Justin De Witt from Fireside Games.

The Spill (Saturday Review)

We had been called out in the middle of the night. A major disaster had been declared. It was all hands on deck. After a swift site rep, we were dispatched to various locations around the oil platform. As we approached by helicopter, which was going to lower us onto the deck of our assigned rescue boats, we could see the extent of The Spill by Andy Kim from Smirk & Dagger Games.

Solitary Happiness – multiplayer solitaire games’ popularity (Topic Discussion)

An interesting question Phil Gross recently asked is why low-interaction games are so popular these days. Even though I'm not really sure whether these types of games are actually popular nowadays, I do wonder why people like games with very little player interaction. So in this article, I want to look at the attraction of games that are either completely multiplayer solitaire or provide very little opportunity for players to interfere with each other's game.

Betrayal at House on the Hill: 3rd Edition (Saturday Review)

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.

Everyone can play – games that (should) suit most people (Topic Discussion)

I always say that not everyone will like every board game, but there is a board game for everyone. I suppose, I should concede that some people don't like board games at all. Our hobby isn't for everyone and that's fine, of course. However, in this article, I want to look at the sort of games that should suit most people.