It was hard to get the favour of the Emperor. Many noble houses were vying for their attention by offering their resources and manual labour to help restore the Emperor’s wonderful monuments. As a way to remember the work everyone did and to honour the grace and power of the Emperor, artists were commissioned to create beautiful paintings. It was your hope to catch the Emperor’s eye and receive the ultimate recognition: being invited as a guest at the Eternal Palace by Steven Aramini from Alley Cat Games.
As an artist, I knew this was going to be a challenging project. Making stained glass window masterpieces required clever and careful planning and meticulous execution. The prospect of having one of your pieces be seen by people around the world was a daunting prospect, but working for such a prestigious family made up for it. I was honoured to be employed by the famous family of Sagrada by Adrian Adamescu and Daryl Andrews from Floodgate Games.
Most of us will have a lot of spare time over the holidays and if we have board game enthusiasts among the family, this is the perfect time to set up and play some heavy games. We might also have more time to meet up with our games group and again, now is the time to get those heavy games to the table that we might not feel like playing of an evening after a busy day at work. So, here are 5 heavy board games I think you should play over the holidays.
We had been on this planet for decades now, exploring its riches, mining for crystals and ore, building factories, markets and other public buildings, growing our pool of experts and increasing our commerce. Now it was time for the steam guilds to move to another section of the amazing planet Tharos by Spielworxx.
Humans were close to becoming extinct. No, this wasn’t some sort of natural disaster. It was what many films had predicted. An artificial intelligence had seized power and started to manufacture parts that it added to itself. The longer we waited, the bigger this monstrosity grew and the more powerful it became. If we did nothing, it would eventually become our Doom Machine by Nathan Meunier.
We were going to fight it out head to head or rather golem to golem. Using our magic control grids, we would steer them around the arena and inflict damage on each other until one was mortally wounded. It was going to be a quick fight, but the battle would take longer. We would fight over many rounds to decide the victor in this Earthenwar by Lazy Poet Games.
Progress was slow, but it was very satisfying seeing the little pea seedlings grow and then, eventually, flower before finally producing pods that slowly swelled up to bursting with new peas inside. We carefully crossed different plants in the hope that they would create new varieties and over time we were able to predict the height of the plant, its flower colour, the pod colour as well as whether the peas were smooth or wrinkly based on their parentage. We were finally ready to work out each plant’s Genotype by Genius Games.
We had been growing tea for generations on our large plantation. We knew everything there was to know about the cultivation of the plants, the best time and method of harvesting the leaves and how to treat them to turn them into wonderfully aromatic tea, ready to be steeped and drunk. We even had ships waiting for our teas to take them out into the world. But for the moment, it was time to relax and enjoy a nice cup of Chai: Tea for 2 by Steeped Games.
The sky suddenly darkened above me. As I looked up, I saw the giant spaceship that was filling up more and more of my view. It towered above the skyscrapers like a huge saucer, dotted in lights and what seemed like openings. It was hard to make out, but it seemed to be bigger than downtown. Suddenly, small aircraft emerged from the spaceship’s openings and started to descend. It felt like we were suddenly living Under Falling Skies by Czech Games Edition.
As is customary at the end of a calendar year, it’s time for my top 5 board games of this, rather odd, year and for me to announce the winner of the Top Table Award 2020. Let me say that this year, I happily allowed games into the top 5 list that were published before 2020, as long as these games were new to me this year. There is a clear winner for me, not just based on the number of plays, the amount of enjoyment the game brought and the nostalgia factor that the game has for me, but because this game took a well-established genre and took it to the next step, making it more accessible to a wider range of people. However, let me not spoil it for you, but start at number 5 and work my way to the top slot.