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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
It was going to be a real spectacle. The crowds had gathered to watch the masters at work and battle to the bitter end. Only one of them would survive. Then, as the match was about to begin, everyone hushed and an eerie silence filled the arena. It was time for the combatants to throw their dice and Str!ke by Dieter Nüßle from Ravensburger.
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.
We had just landed in Normandy. It was the summer of 1944, but it was relatively cold. We were thousands of miles from home and the landscape was unknown to us. Yet, we had to push deeper into a country we didn't know in our goal to push the German forces out of France. There was regular machine gun fire and mortar bombardment. It was really scary, but we remained Undaunted: Normandy by Trevor Benjamin and David Thompson from Osprey Games.
It was a beautiful day. The sea was calm and the sun was shining. The water was crystal clear and even while you were sitting on the side of the boat, in your full diving gear, you could see the corals and wonderful sea creatures in the water. You knew it was going to be a long day and you would probably split it into two or three dives. You did one last check of your gear and then you leant back and dropped into the Aquamarine by Matthew Dunstan and Rory Muldoon from Postmark Games.