Tag Archives: board games

Tabletop Thursday: Board Game Expansions For Your Collection

Following my reading recommendations yesterday, I was inspired to post about a few board game expansions worth adding to your collection:

Ticket to Ride: 1910
This is essential just to replace the tiny cards that comes with the original game
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Ticket to Ride Nederland
It may be because I totally dominated when we played this version, but the introduction of bridge tolls adds a very interesting element to the original game. Read: Cutthroat.
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Dixit Origins (or any of the other ones)
I’ve professed my love for Dixit so it comes as no surprise that we have already started acquiring the expansions. To be honest the toughest question was not if we would buy it but which one.
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I’m excited to discover more board game expansions, namely for Lords of Waterdeep, Tokaido, Catan, Dominion, Carcassonne and Alhambra. Happy Thursday!

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Tabletop Thursday: “Machi Koro” Review

The other day, Keith and I just wanted to play board games, but none of our friends were free, so we had the difficult task of picking a fun two-player game that’s not Jenga or Battleship. I guess we could’ve played Carcassonne or Takenoko, which are still fun with only two players, and yet something compelled us to go to our local board game cafe and try something new. And that game was Machi Koro.
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I have seen the well-illustrated, colorful box plenty of times at multiple board game shops, but never really had the urge to pick it up. Keith, however heard good things about it, plus it didn’t hurt that the people behind the game (IDW) were also behind the Kill Shakespeare board game.
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Now, there is no Wil Wheaton’s Tabletop video for this game (shocking I know!) but there are still a couple out there you can check out, but the rules are pretty simple: you have just been elected mayor of the city of Machi Koro and your goal is to buy buildings in order to gain enough income to buy four monuments. The first person to build all their monuments win. How do you gain income you ask? You’re at the mercy of roll of the dice, just like in Catan, which is why people refer to this game as a simpler and faster version, eliminating trade. That doesn’t mean it’s not cutthroat though. Certain rolls could mean you collect income from your opponents rather than the bank.
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We had a lot of fun learning and playing this game. With two players, it goes by really fast. With all the different types of buildings, there’s a lot of ways to win. I’m interested to know how the dynamics would change with 4 players. Hopefully, we get to play it very soon. Happy Thursday!

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday! It’s an even happier one considering the three-day weekend ahead of us. I’m so excited to spend Valentine’s Day with friends, watch some Oscar-nominated movies and nap.
Definitely needed a pint to get through the week, even with my day off Wednesday.

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We’re planning on watching “The F Word”, decorating sugar cookies and playing board games, including Dixit tomorrow. Hope you have a great weekend as well!

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Tabletop Thursday: “Tokaido” Review

Time for another board game review. I have been dying to play this game since my boyfriend first told me about it. He phrased it like this, “Imagine a board game where you can plan the perfect Japan vacation, shop for the perfect souvenir, visit temples, bathe in hot springs, get some painting done and eat the best food”. Um, YES PLEASE. That’s basically what Tokaido is.
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The goal of the game is to finish as the most initiated traveler. You make your way across the East sea road, from Kyoto to Tokyo, by taking turns moving your Meeples and occupying different spaces on a linear track. The person who is furthest down the road goes first. The trip has four days and you can’t do everything so you must choose your actions wisely. Just like Wil Wheaton says in the following video, this is “the most zen cutthroat game you will ever play”. I highly suggest you watch it even if you don’t plan on playing since it is one of the best Tabletop videos ever in my opinion:

We finally played the game this past weekend and it is so much fun. You get a character that gives you a special bonus ability and with it, you can pretty much map out if you should focus on giving to the temple or if getting the food bonus at the end is better. I decided to ignore the gods and it bit me in the ass in the end since having the biggest donation gives you ten points at the end. Won’t be making that mistake again. It’s very easy to learn and explain to both new and veteran Tabletop gamers alike. Plus just look at how gorgeous the board and the art work is:
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Let me see if I can find anything to complain about…the only thing I can think of is that it will definitely make you crave Japanese food and wish you were actually going to Japan. I already can’t wait to play it again!

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Tabletop Thursday: “Forbidden Island” Review

Last week, I was excited to share my thoughts on this awesome new game we discovered at a friend’s birthday Tabletop-themed birthday party. This week, I wanna share another board game that we played as well that night, a cooperative game called: Forbidden Island.

From the same maker that brought you Pandemic comes another board game where you have to work as a team to defeat the game. Think of it as Survive: Escape From Atlantis! meets Pandemic. Basically, you and your crew are on an island with various artifacts. Your mission is to retrieve said artifacts and getting to the helipad to take off before the island sinks and takes you with it.

As always, it’s much more fun when Wil Wheaton explains it:

We played this game with someone we met at the aforementioned birthday party and it turned out to be a great way to make a new friend who introduced us to even more cool games. Just like in Pandemic, each player has a role to play in their team with special skills to facilitate survival. Instead of diseases spreading, at every turn, the water rises and certain tiles become submerged or disappear altogether. We found it much easier to beat than Pandemic, but then again maybe we just were an awesome team. I was surprised to find out that the game defeated Wil Wheaton and his crew, but then again it’s the Wheaton curse. Comparing their game to ours, the artifacts were much closer together on our board and we also diligently kept shoring tiles instead of letting them just sink and create problems for us later on.

The only downside is the maximum of 4 players. Plus the potential problem of what happens during coop games when either one person basically just tells everyone what to do or people argue for awhile on what move is best and the game progresses at a snail’s pace. Luckily, we didn’t have that problem when we played. Everyone took their turn, conferred with the group and we were successful! Next time, we’ll definitely up the level difficulty.

Aside from it being a fun game, another reason to go out and actually get this game is the fact that it’s just plain gorgeous. The tin case is pretty, the pieces are of very good quality, the cards are nice and the illustrations are top notch.
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I’m looking forward to trying the Forbidden Desert variant, which seems to be a little more extreme. When I do, I’ll make sure to post a review up. Happy Thursday!

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Friday Favorites

Happy Friday everyone! Finally, it’s Friday. I don’t know about you, but for me, this week went by at a snail’s pace. My boss is off to Mexico next week, lucky her. Meanwhile, winter is getting on my nerves. Hopefully she’ll bring some warm weather back with her. Here are a few things that are getting me through these dreary months:

An alternative to Jenga, this hit Korean game is surprisingly fun:
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Definitely enjoyed staying at the Eaton Chelsea for our last conference:
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Our close friend’s awesome board game-themed birthday party:
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Currently finishing up this beauty of a book:
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I wish we can have these pancakes every weekend:
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Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

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Tabletop Thursday: “Dixit Journey” Review

It’s been awhile but I’m bringing back Tabletop Thursdays because I discovered some games I’d like to talk about. Last Saturday was a dear friend’s birthday and the theme was video and board games. The theme was executed perfectly with the party room in his condo decorated with various Super Mario decorations. The N64 was hooked up to the big screen and various board games were set up on tables. There was Takenoko, Ticket to Ride, Carcassonne, but we wanted to discover a new game. Luckily, we met Jeremy, who brought Dixit Journey with him.
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Jeremy sold it to us by describing it as “Reverse Pictionary”. I was very intrigued. If you’ve read my other Tabletop Thursdays, you’d know that the best way to learn new board games is through Wil Wheaton. So here’s how Dixit works:

That episode of Tabletop is one of the funniest ones ever. But if you don’t have time to watch the video, basically every player gets 6 cards with gorgeous images on them. Each player takes turns to become the storyteller. The storyteller chooses a card from their hand and puts it facedown. Then he or she says a word, a phrase, a sound effect, or a song, (use your imagination) that best describes that image. Every other player puts down a card that they think matches that description. The storyteller then shuffles all the cards and the pictures are shown face up and every player has to bet upon which picture was the storyteller’s. If nobody or everybody finds the correct card, the storyteller scores 0, and each of the other players scores 2. Otherwise the storyteller and whoever found the correct answer score 3. Players score 1 point for every vote for their own card.
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WE. LOVED. THIS. GAME. It’s awesome. It’s the perfect party game. First of all, you can play up to six players, which is not the case for most Euro games. Second, it’s so easy to explain the rules. But most of all, it’s just so fun. From trying to come up with clever-but-not-too-clever clues to guessing what kind of storyteller your friends are (are they literal? do they use super vague references?) to putting down that perfect card to go with the storyteller’s description to steal some points for the win. The version we played isn’t the original Dixit from the video but a variation called Journey, which just means it has different cards.

We only played one round so we didn’t get to see what it would be like to play again with cards that we might’ve already seen before but there’s enough cards for multiple plays. Or, you just need to use your imagination better. I’m very excited to introduce this game to our other friends and see what they think.

Happy Thursday!

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