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2015 in Words

02 Jan
dav

Gaming with friends in IBG 6th Gaming Camp 2015

2015 is a Kickstarter year for me. First of all I am not a Kickstarter maniac or regular. Usually I tag along friends backing a project (and yes all of them were board games). I don’t know why and how this year I grew some balls to back them independently. Even offer some friends to tag along.
If came to think of it, I didn’t really know what was the reason for the change.

In total there were 9 Kickstarter projects that I backed, though not all of them are by myself. Those nine are Above and Below, Trickerion, The Gallerist, Guns and Steel, Soccer 17, Eminent Domain Exotica & Battlecruisers, Gloomhaven, Scythe and The 7th Continent. The latest three were crazy backing, because the three were around at the same time and they’re not tiny and small cost games. A peculiar feat for me personally. In fact most of the nines are expensive games (consider the shipping cost) counting Above and Below, Trickerion and The Gallerist.

I still waiting for the completion of Gloomhaven, Trickerion, Scythe, Eminent Domain Exotica & Battlecruisers, and The 7th Continent. Trickerion completion should be in progress but I doubt it will arrive in 2015, my estimation is on the first week of January (or second). The others are undeniably completed in 2016. Guns and Steel has the fastest record on Kickstarter completion on my book, it showed up like magic, ZAP! And it’s in a good condition even it was mailed only in small envelope pack. I love the quality of the game box and cards. Soccer 17’s completion was also in time, this was likely because it’s shipped locally in Indonesia. Above and Below also turned out good, perfect condition though there was small issue from the custom office. My friend sorted it out thankfully. The game is perfect, love the components and fly with rainbow colors in my expectation. Maybe my biggest issue was from The Gallerist. This project was spectacular, in terms of game play and components. But it’s the opposite when talking about the service and attitude of the publisher. I was greatly disappointed by their service and would no longer back their future projects through Kickstater. Very sad consider how perfect the game is. One of my most favorite games in 2015, it might be the best. Moongha Invaders was finally completed in December (after waiting 3 years) which is good. The box is big and heavy, we backed it with quite a deal in group pledge. Eminent Domain Microcosm was smooth, it arrived in good condition and I like it very much for a 2-player microgame. The disappointment was in Viceroy. Sure it had lots of stretch goals and bonuses, I even added the playmat into may pledge. But unfortunately the game was wrapped only in plastic bubble wraps which inevitably arrived badly damaged. The box was no longer a box, full tear in several sides. I demanded replacement from the publisher but they only managed to give the replacement in the next batch of printing (which will be in 2016). The game also not that impressive.

In total my board games acquisition is 38 games, which is already more than 2 games per month. Crazy indeed, and I still whined there were many titles that I’ve missed along the way. Those games are Aquasphere (KS), Revolver 1.4: The Tarnished Star, Hawaii, Rum & Pirates, Caverna, Microcosm (KS), Kanban: Automotive Revolution, Super Motherload, Craftsmen, Wildcatters, Patchwork, El Gaucho, The Witches, Hattari, Minerva, Eminent Domain: Escalation, But Wait There’s More, North Wind, Spyfall, The Ancient World, Roll For The Galaxy, Lord of The Rings (given by a friend) with expansions, Super Rhino, Black Sheep & White Sheep, Sukimono, Too Many Cinderellas, I Hate Zombies (KS), Viceroy (KS), Discoveries, Guns and Steel (KS), Dark Moon, Terra Mystica: Fire & Ice, Nippon, The Gallerist, Above and Below, Moongha Invaders and Soccer 17. Also bought Maskmen but the game is not arrived yet, probably after new year, so it’s not included in 2015.

From 38 games, only 5 games that I sold almost immediately, I Hate Zombies, Stockpile, But Wait There’s More!, Black Sheep & White Sheep and North Wind. I found I Hate Zombies to be far less entertaining, immediately sold it. But Wait There’s More was kinda impulse buy because of Snake Oil, never had the chance to try it but from friends testimony I decided Snake Oil still a better one and no need to have more than one for this kind of game. North Wind was too light for my taste, kinda repetitive and it’s heavily lean on luck of the die rolls. Black Sheep & White Sheep on the other hand, I couldn’t stand the rules which was poorly translated to English, decided to throw it away. Stockpile was an exception, I sold it because I already have the PnP copy and I had to keep one of them. Apparently letting go my hard worked and full of sweat print and play version was harder than the original one. So I sold it to a friend.
I received Lord of The Ring plus with 2 expansions from a very kind friend, which he no longer need it in his collection. It’s in a bad shape but still a good addition since I love the theme. I planned to have a custom box made for it.

Some notable games worth to mentions are:
Aquasphere. This was the latest game from Stefan Feld and I like it very much. It replaces The Castles of Burgundy for me. The vibrant colors are very interesting to see and the programming actions are amazing and brain burning at the same time. Simply a great game.
Kanban: Automotive Revolution. Okay, this is a beast, why? Because it’s a beast, that’s why! My first Vital Lacerda’s game. It’s complex and very heavy, but it’s beautiful. Best game of 2014 for me. I only managed to try the “Mean Sandra” mode recently and was surprised how different it was and immediately got hooked to it.
Rum & Pirates. Another classic from Stefan Feld, this time it’s one of his old early games. I got it as a birthday gift from my girlfriend and it’s not a hit for me, which made her kinda sad. Sorry girl, cannot lie about it. Its a fun game but somehow it frustrated me. It’s just the die rolling thing is not my best choice.
Super Motherload. Okay, a card game that combines puzzle game with deck building mechanism. Interesting and it’s good. I decided to sell Blood Bowl in order to give space for this one. Just enough for deck building games in my collection I guess. I paid quite  a hefty price for this via ebay.
Wildcatters. I got this game from a friend who visited Netherland along with Patchwork and El Gaucho. This is a majority game in disguise of an oil company stock market game. I love the visual presentation of the game and it has ‘Brass’ feeling in it.
Spyfall. A friend brought this hyped game and after one play, I was immediately hooked. Ordered it from him (luckily he still had one copy left). It’s a good social deduction game and a good addition to my filler collection alongside The Resistance: Avalon and Snake Oil.
The Ancient World. I skipped the KS project on this one, and after several occasions passing the opportunities, I couldn’t hold myself to get it. It’s pricey but nevertheless my first Ryan Laukat’s game. Damn, I need to find a way to get that City of Iron 2nd edition and Artifact inc. It’s a simple worker placement / set collection game and it has ‘The Pillars of The Earth’ classic worker placement Euro feel in it.
Roll For The Galaxy. It’s the dice game to Race For The Galaxy, which I almost hate because I never good at it (completely not it’s fault). This time I tried  my friend’s copy and immediately fell in love with it. Definitely better than the card game. So I snatched one copy and secure a place in my collection. The rolling action of the dice on the cups are novelty, a signature to the game.
The Gallerist. This is simply a work of art. Starting from the illustrations, components and to the game play itself. It’s better than Kanban in several terms. It has semi-coop feel and non-blocking actions in it, which makes it more friendly and forgiving than Kanban. When I received the game, I was surprised with how huge the box was. It was huge, almost as the size of Eclipse box. I love the box insert (very functional) and how thick the tiles are.
Nippon. Nuno Bizarro Sientiero and Paulo Soledade designs are amazing. I said it from Madeira and Panamax. They’re instantly become a hit duo-designers by designing their first game, Madeira and no one even saw that coming. I think I have click with their games, so when I knew they wanted to launch a new game (Nippon) also from What’S Your Game?, it’s an insta buy for me. I pre-ordered it instantly as soon as it’s available for PO. The game was amazing, very solid, very simple but don’t get me wrong, there’s a beast in it. I needed 2-3 plays to realize what kind of game this was. It’s like Russian Railroads. There are lot of things you need in so little time (literally). Timing is important, take part in scoring is crucial, optimization is mandatory if you want to survive this game. Bravo and salute to them!
Above and Below. Another Ryan Laukat’s game, this time I successfully backed it on KS. It’s pricey but totally worth it. Beautiful illustrations and compelling story mashed together in a good game play. As I read somewhere in BGG, a user wrote that Ryan’s design is far from death or hopelessness. Ryan’s games are juice out optimisms all over the place. I really enjoy my first try and eager to play it again soon. I believed I was not mistaken not to pass this game. It’s about time for him and I knew it.
Moongha Invaders. My longest KS project ever (well not really, since it’s already completed and The Fallen City Of Karez still not yet complete), with more than 3 years time. Finally I received the game. It’s huge and full of miniatures. Okay Martin Wallace might be suck it up big time for doing minis project and won’t be doing any of it in the near future. Sorry for him. Moongha Invaders is one of a kind Wallace game. No other of his games are like this. Just like A Study in Emerald, this is also different. The game really lies heavily in high rolls and guess what, surprise surprise, no modifier. Ain’t that something? But I like it (I might be subjective), it gives different feels, fun and fresh. Cannot wait to try the 2-player variant.

My play time also decrease exponentially compared to the previous years, this might have anything to do with my work in new place. Often come home late night gave no more time to play games. I also didn’t have time to do any player aid designs and retheme for Play On Print. But recently I started to design games again, I hope it’s productive (it must be!).

Let’s talked about gaming groups. Yes, less and less gaming groups each year. More specific and selective than before, am I a bad person? Well can’t blame me though! With less play time I found each play to be far more precious and selecting the perfect group is crucially important. Yes, cannot afford to play game with bad experience. I still have the urge of playing with new people, random people, to introduce new games to new players and maybe participate in the community grow. I still excited to explain games to others which is still good. Uh yes, still in the tradition on my community each year, this year we also successfully held a gaming camp (this was the sixth) last November. It’s good, not really many players just because we intended as it was to maintain good gaming ambience. Hope to hold another one.in 2016, and maybe some small gathering or camp.

Looking forward in 2016. I guess next year I’ll have less purchase because of life and less play time also because of life. Need to do something about my life and I hope things will be better in the near future. Okay back into games. Very looking forward to Gloomhaven, Scythe and The 7th Continent completions. Also need to filter more strictly in game purchases. I also participated in 10 x 10 games challenge in BGG and the games in my list are not easy tasks. Trickerion, The Gallerist, Kanban and Nippon are included on the list, these are beasts. Fingers crossed!

I guess that’s all for 2015. Wish you a great celebration welcoming the new year. I have no doubt will be gaming off the 2015 into 2016. Play more, buy more!

Happy Gaming!

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Posted by on January 2, 2016 in Article

 

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