An Ode to Friends (Topic Discussion)
Playing games is often a very social activity, even though I don’t want to neglect the many solo gamers that play an important part in our hobby. However, in this article, I want to focus on multiplayer games. I want to talk about what roles friends fulfil in our hobby. I basically want to write an ode to all the friends I have made through board games. See the following as my love letter to friends everywhere.
Serious hobbies – “serious” gamers and the mainstream (Topic Discussion)
A “hobby”, as defined by Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary, is “a pursuit outside one’s regular occupation engaged in especially for relaxation.” So hobby games are all about doing something different to what we usually do and doing it to relax. The definition of “serious”, on the other hand, is a bit more complex. One option I found in Merriam-Webster’s online dictionary defines it as “requiring much thought or work” or “not joking or trifling.” So a serious gamer invests a lot of thought and work into their hobby and doesn’t want people to make fun of it. It’s all a bit confusing and that’s why I want to look at the idea of a “serious hobby gamer” in more detail in this article. I also want to look at how hobby games have entered the mainstream and how that relates to the “seriousness” of the hobby.
Digital Supplements – a look at digital accessories for board games (Topic Discussion)
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.
Serious war games – controversial or not (Topic Discussion)
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.
Winning strategies – ideas to help you win (Topic Discussion)
Even if you’re not a particularly competitive player, trying to win the game is what you should aim for. You may not care if you do eventually win and prefer to focus on doing better than previously. That’s fine and at the end of the day, playing games is about having fun. However, if you do have even a small competitive streak in you, then this article may help you become a better player and win more often.
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.
Digital cheats – practising against AIs (Topic Discussion)
Since the lockdown, many board games have now also been released in digital format. Some of these implementations are just a representation of the physical game on your screen. You still have to move everything by hand and do all the housekeeping. Other solutions enforce rules and carry out all the actions for you. You just need to point and click. Some games also come with AI opponents, allowing you to create a competitive game even when you’re by yourself or add additional, digital players to a multiplayer game. In this article, I want to look at using these computer players to help you improve your game.
Libertalia: Winds of Galecrest (Saturday Review)
Sailing the winds in your sky pirate ship, you and your crew land on a different island each day, looking for treasure, adventure and glory. You need to be fast though, because you’re not alone. Other ships in the fleet have followed the same course and they want their share of the varied loot. If the crew member you send to the island is too slow, they will not come back with valuable treasure, but with a terrible curse or worse, they will not return at all. Only the best pirate will make it in Libertalia: Winds of Galecrest by Paolo Mori from Stonemaier Games.
A Race in Time (Saturday Review)
History was an interesting place for all of us. We recognized a number of famous figures, while some were new to us. As we travelled through the ages, we encountered new people and learned about different events. Some eras were more familiar than others. Our aim was to be the first to reach the present day. We all took part in A Race in Time from History Heroes.
Plutocracy (Saturday Review)
After Earth had been mostly laid to waste, major corporations took charge and colonized much of the Solar System. Interplanetary trade was the only source of money and therefore power. Earth’s few remaining societies still held a fair amount of political influence, but controlling as many of the independent planetary parliaments as possible was probably even more important. If you timed it right and invested your money wisely, you could gain power in the Solar System’s ultimate authority, the Plutocratic Council. After all, Earth’s political systems had been replaced by a Plutocracy by Claudio Bierig from Doppeldenkspiele.