The Gathering of Friends game convention 2014 – Part #2!
Picking up from where I left off yesterday..
Coconuts: This is a published game, recently Kickstarted. Set up your cups, and catapult some tiny rubber coconuts at them in hopes of getting it in, and capturing that cup. First to 6 cups wins. Look, what’s not to love about catapulting tiny rubber coconuts from a monkey’s hands? So much hilarity in our poor aim, and as much hilarity in our amazing/lucky aim! The most fun part is getting your coconut in an opponent’s cup to steal. Muhhahahaha!
Can’t Stop: This is an old game, but still a good one. I love Can’t Stop – so simple yet addictive. Push your luck with dice rolling to win three of the numbered columns before your opponents can. A classic. Looking forward to the tournament at the end of the con!
Trains: This is a published game from AEG. I don’t have any problems with deck building, so I’m always willing to give a new one a try. I really liked the role the board played in this game – it felt like it really gave some purpose to how you build your deck and gave a little more structure to the game. I wasn’t quite sure of the strategy, so I think going back for multiple plays would be far more rewarding.
Splendor: This is a recent release from Space Cowboys. A simple resource-generation-for-points game, but I enjoyed the way it played out. I found the strategy surprisingly tough for such a simple game! It’s a real struggle to get what you need to get ahead, especially in a 4 player game. Simple to learn (and teach). Not sure about the longevity of replayability. (And the theme is pretty pasted on, I think it could be anything.)
Five Tribes: This isn’t the final artwork/component combination, but seemed pretty close – I think Days of Wonder are gonna make this look wonderful for its release at Gen Con. This is, so far, my favourite new game I’ve tried at the Gathering! Designer Bruno Cathala taught it to us on Saturday. Taking a euro with an Arabian theme and giving it a fresh twist, this game relies on displacing workers already on the board, rather than each player placing their own workers. The strategy of moving these workers allows you to perform certain tasks, and all of these work toward the generation of points. White meeples allow you to obtain Djinn which have special affects; green meeples allow you to buy from the market; blue meeples are architects that earn you money from surrounding buildings; red meeples are assassins that can be used to eliminate meeples on the board or in front of other players; yellow meeples are worth points at the end of the game (majority). With all of this and a bid for player order at the start of each round, there’s a wonderful balancing game to make the most of your moves. I really enjoyed this one, can’t stop thinking about it! I won’t get to play it again until its wide release, come on Gen Con!
Pandemic – The Cure: We played a fairly late-stage prototype from Z-Man – I think it’ll have a Gen Con release? Matt Leacock has done such a great job at transferring the theme and general gist of gameplay from Pandemic the board game over to a very light and reasonably quick dice game. I’d say I would almost default to this game rather than regular Pandemic because it’s done such a great job at porting everything over and making it less complicated to play. Each role is well thought out, dice sides are distributed well for players and viruses, the team work is still at the forefront, and it’s still brutally hard to stop the world from being enveloped in filthy sick germs. Whee!
Sushi Go!: This is an existing publication that was Kickstarted, and has been picked up for a reprint through GameWright soon. I played the original ALG version. 7 Wonders Light! Draft your cards! build up your tableau with combinations for points! be amazed at how cute cartoon sushi is! YAY! I need this – I wish the art was going to be the same in the GW version, though.
Going, Going, GONE!: A published game from Stronghold Games. It’s criminal it took me so long to try this game. Madly tossing cubes in cups to bid in auctions is the best! Set collection is good, secondary fun. A great, easy to understand game with a lot of excellent action going on. I must get this.
Ca$h ‘n’ Gun$ 2nd Edition: An almost finished prototype from Repos, but I’m not sure of the release date other than 2014. I tried the new version of Ca$h ‘n’ Gun$ with the Repos folks, and I love it! There’s some new stuff going on which I think really refreshed the gameplay for me. Each player now gets dealt a random special power to use once per round, there’s also some new loot in addition to money (paintings, diamonds, and also med kits to heal up!). There’s also a ‘Boss’ role that can be claimed as part of the loot, and it lets you tell a player to re-aim during the shooting phase. I really had fun, and I like the new character art way better!
Arboretum: I played the published French version from Z-Man, and an English version is imminent! I am not sure I grasped the concept of this well, as it was my last game at the end of the very long first weekend & I was tired. With some set collection, tableau building and hand management going on, there’s a lot to think about. Adam described it as having elements of Lost Cities which I can see. I’ll give it another try, because it is quite interesting – and it has very pretty artwork.
Stay tuned next week for my wrap-up of the final weekend!