Solitaire Games on Your Table - May 2020
Stefan Schneider
Germany
Stockstadt
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Welcome to
Solitaire Games on Your Table
May 2020


The Home of “Together, We Game Alone”

Welcome to another month of solo gaming. So good to see you here! This is the 1 Player Guild's Solitaire Games on Your Table (SGOYT) geeklist for May. Please share what is on your table this month, or give some feedback and comments on others' plays.

Guidelines

1 Play a solo game, a solo variant, or a multiplayer game solo.
2 Add an entry to this GeekList and tell us about it. Get the most out of Kevins excellent SGOYT Aggregator by using at least one of the following tags:
1 Add the <summary></summary> tag to include a short overview. All summaries are recorded, as on my user overview page.
2 Add the <rating></rating> tag to rate a game on a scale of 0.5 to 5.0. Only the most recent rating for a game is recorded, as on my ratings page.
3 Be nice and have fun!
4 See something you like? Give it a thumb.
5 See something interesting? Tell them so in a comment.
6 See something amazing? Hand out some bag

It's extremely helpful (but not mandatory) to include some thumbsup, thumbsdown describing the pros and cons of the game you played. They're great visual aids to summarize your post.

Need a little help with formatting? Check out the Forum Formatting Guide and Tricks of the Geek.


=== Happy 7th Anniversary SGOYT===


Seven years! It all started 7 years ago. The first list was published by the founder of the 1 Player Guild, Albert and was three pages long! 66 entries in total. How this list has grown... And some of the games from the very first list are still regularly played today.

I'm very thankful for having found SGOYT, this is were I live now. It is fun reading about new games and what other people think about a given game. And even learn a bit about the other solo players, cheering each other on, even supporting each other when needed. Thank you!

From gallery of gentle
From gallery of hoangart

picture by Hoang


So let's celebrate. Give yourself or others a present, bake yourself a solo cake. Take a picture with you celebrating SGOYT, host a solo party! Every entry to this list that celebrates SGOYT will get some geekgold and will get the chance to win a present at the end of the month.



Stay healthy and happy gaming!

Upcoming SGOYT Hosts
June
Monica Elida Forssell
Norway
Sandnes
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July
Jason Moore
Germany
March
Baden-Württemberg
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"Playin' solitaire 'til dawn, with a deck of fifty-one."
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Microbadge: Cthulhu: Death May Die fanMicrobadge: Tainted Grail fanMicrobadge: Fuji KoroMicrobadge: Planet Apocalypse fanMicrobadge: Went the day well?


Interested in hosting a future month's list? Find out more in the first post of this thread and send a GeekMail to Ryanmobile to volunteer.

SGOYT Resources

1 Player Guild - The home base for everything related to solo games
Sock Puppet of the Week Subscription - 1 Player Guild Sock Puppet of the Week: get to know guild members [subscription thread]

SGOYT Monthly GeekList Subscription - SGOYT Geeklists [subscription thread]
SGOYT QuickLinks - A collection of links to every SGOYT GeekList
SGOYT Aggregator - A site to find session reports, game and user data from every SGOYT list
SGOYT Made Me Buy This - A list to both thank and jokingly blame SGOYT posters for purchases

1 Player Guild / SGOYT 2020 Solitaire Goals - A place to set and track personal solo game goals for 2020
2020 Solo Challenges Geeklist - A subscription list of every past and current 2020 solo challenge for specific games
MetaList for GeekList Challenges - Gaming challenges and goals for this year or even more long term

2019 People's Choice Top 200 Solo Games - An extensive list of the top 100 solo games as voted by solo gamers
The Consolidated Top 250 Solo Games 2014 - 2019 - Ranking the solo games of all People's Choice yearly lists so far
Solo Gaming Awards - A list of links to various 1 Player Guild and solo game awards
Solitaire Recommendations for Your Table - A list of solo recommendations broken down by genre

1 Player Guild Trading Post - A place to buy, sell, and trade games with members of the 1 Player Guild
The Solo Games Chain of Generosity - A place to pay it forward with other members of the 1 Player Guild
Solitaire Games - Fair Trade It Forward 2 - A place to pay it forward with solo games
1 Player Guild Hot Deals Thread - A listing of current deals and discounts on solo games
1 Player Guild Auction Watch - A thread with links to BGG auctions for rare and hard-to-find games

Solitaire Resources - A list of additional resources for solo gamers

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1. Board Game: The Cooking Game [Average Rating:6.15 Unranked]
Board Game: The Cooking Game
Stefan Schneider
Germany
Stockstadt
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Okay, since David also posted a picture of something to eat, how about a cooking challenge!

No, no, don't worry, you don't really have to be able to cook to participate.

But what would you feed your heroes down there in that dungeon you sent them into, without light, without fresh air and full of spiders, oozes and zombies?
What would you cook for them? Or to feed your people On Mars? Or for the navvies, working all day to lay the tracks up to Snowdonia, to keep up their strenghts?

Try to come up with a recipe, maybe from some of the ingredients found in the game? Anything funny, original, authentic, tasty, made up, savory you can come up with? Extra points if you are actually cooking something game related!

I'm always willing to try out new recipes and new experiences. Well, up to a limit, that is

Just post the game you played as a comment and add the recipe. I'm very curious what you can come up with!
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2. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Napoleonics Expansion #3 – The Austrian Army [Average Rating:8.44 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.44 Unranked]
Board Game: Commands & Colors: Napoleonics Expansion #3 – The Austrian Army
Judd Vance
United States
Wichita
Kansas
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"Now it is mumbo jumbo like that!!! And skinny little lizards thinking they're the last dragon to give kung fu a bad name. Come on, LeRoy! I got something REAL for yo @ss in these hands!"
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I am finally getting into Napoleonic history and thought I would play through scenarios chronologically across the expansions while studying some history behind them.
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3. Board Game: Mageling [Average Rating:7.19 Overall Rank:12634]
Board Game: Mageling
Jason Moore
Germany
March
Baden-Württemberg
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I’ve been switching between three or four games this past couple of weeks, all with a view to producing a review of them. This is the quickest playing of the bunch and just happens to be the one currently on the table.

It’s a dice-drafting tableau builder in which you’re trekking across five realms to protect a spiritual totem, called the Evertree, from some ripening dark gods.

The locations are drawn from a randomised selection for each realm and what I enjoy most about it is that, despite its compact size, it has a fantastic amount of replayability. Instead of a starting hand, you deal out five cards from the scrolls/spirits deck and whatever is laid out is what you have to work with. You,ll be drawing cards into a tableau as well as activating some from the offer. The amount of interplay between everything really makes this feel bigger than it is.

There’s also a campaign mode of increasing difficulty, offset by you developing a kingdom of saved cards each game. It’s tight.



From gallery of repairmanjack
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4. Board Game: Flamme Rouge [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:196]
Board Game: Flamme Rouge
Mike Hoyt
United States
Montana
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I've been playing this both multi-hand solo (running each team myself, which is rather slow) and with the BOT rules in the expansion Flamme Rouge: Peloton which is much quicker and gives a surprisingly satisfying race

I love the game for it's fidelity to bicycle racing with drafting and sheltering, effects of hills, feeding zones, cobblestones etc. all captured brilliantly by simple mechanics.

The simple mechanics and having all riders start with the same energy means races are close, and the ability of the player to influence the outcome is subtle, but it is there and satisfying to pull off a win
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5. Board Game: Dale of Merchants Collection [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:2532] [Average Rating:7.98 Unranked]
Board Game: Dale of Merchants Collection
NK
United States
Arkansas
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With a game featuring the Intimidating Dwarf Crocodiles, Thieving Northern Raccoons, and Observant Snowy Owls (pictured below, lost miserably lol) followed by another with the Friendly Fennec Foxes, Fickle Giant Pangolins, and the Wealthy Tuataras (didn't snag a picture, but like last time, the pangolins gave me a firm win), I believe I've played a game with all of the animals available so far. Now I just need Dale of Merchants 3 to come out and to play games with the different characters laugh

From gallery of nkfloofiepoof
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6. Board Game: Wingspan: European Expansion [Average Rating:8.48 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.48 Unranked]
Board Game: Wingspan: European Expansion
Dominic Sumich
Australia
Redland bay, Queensland
Queensland
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This was my second play of the European Expansion. I've captured a few more thoughts since my last play and will share them below.

So I absolutely got crushed by the Eagle Eyed Eagle automa in this game 91 to 65.

I really wanted to go for an all in egg laying strategy using pink, brown and blue powers in the Grassland habitat.

My idea was to build a few good bird cards in this habitat that would activate massive extra egg laying when used. This would be coupled with end of round birds that boost egg production.

Didn't quite pull it off. This was largely because when you mix in the blue cards with the rest of massive deck, finding the cards you need becomes a difficult exercise.

To counter this I made sure I built up a good card draw engine and had something like 12 cards in my hand at one stage near the end of round two.

But do you think I could find what I wanted? Nope. This again comes down to luck of the draw and the poor mitigation in this game. I've mentioned this before but I really think there needs to be a bird power that states "Draw 10 and choose two to keep." Or some variation or alternative that lets you search the decks for cards that align to your specific strategy.

My other new thought is that the new Automa exclusive end of game goal cards are brutal. I'd only really play with these two goal cards if you want to really up the difficulty. Imagine you're playing against the Eagle Eyed Eagle which collects 5 points for each face down bird. Then on top of that it is collecting birds that have either 5,6 or 7 points from the bird tray.

I think a random draw of the end of goal cards for the player and the automa is far fairer and is essentially set in the original ruleset anyways.

So I'm still keen to play this more and prove myself wrong on the whole luck/draw mitigation.

Here's my end tableau (not including tucked, cached or eggs as I had put them away at that point):

From gallery of Annanicolesmith


Anyways there is a long weekend for those of us in Queensland this weekend. I'm hoping to include a play of:

1 x Fantastic Factories
1 x Tramways
1 x Navajo Wars
1 x Wingspan European Expansion

What are your plans for the weekend? Anything exciting?!
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7. Board Game: Burgle Bros. [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:229]
Board Game: Burgle Bros.
Dob Razil
France
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May here, for half an hour.

I saw this game on my shelf and realized much time had passed since I had last played it. Nearly two years now. I decided to take it out tonight.

Rules came back gently, although I had to check more than once, this is not the best rulebook on Earth.

The gameplay is nice, although not fascinating. I played the two floors, beginner scenario. The first Safe was opened quickly, but dice refused to give me a 1 for the second Safe, and the Guard finally got me.
From gallery of dobrazil


There are indeed many good points in this game. I must get back to it, to get all the rules right and have in mind all the options I can use, and I think I'll have quite some fun. I can also clearly see why I had forgotten it on a shelf. I have many other better games.
But I need to play my smaller, weaker games to get some fresh air.
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8. Board Game: Arkham Noir: Case #1 – The Witch Cult Murders [Average Rating:6.88 Overall Rank:2387] [Average Rating:6.88 Unranked]
Board Game: Arkham Noir: Case #1 – The Witch Cult Murders
John Holliman
United States
Delaware
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So this is the most recent solitaire game that I have had on my table and I love the mechanics as well as how unforgiving it is. I have played 5 games of this so far and have not won a single one of them. Even though it has beaten me every single time, I still love playing the game thanks to its difficult puzzle. You are trying to collect 5 "puzzle" cards to solve the mystery before going insane or running out of time (tracked via cases).

Pros: Small box, simple setup, easy to learn, easy to play, challenging to beat

Cons: You will lose A LOT

This game can be found for around $20 USD so it is not a major investment for the amount of play you will get out of this box.
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9. Board Game: Warfighter: The WWII Tactical Combat Card Game [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:1987] [Average Rating:7.89 Unranked]
Board Game: Warfighter: The WWII Tactical Combat Card Game
Arcadian Del Sol
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
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From gallery of Arcadian Del Sol


Excited to try out a game I had wanted to buy for a long time, I poured over the rules, scoured the internet for teaching videos, poured over the rules some more, posted some questions in the BGG forums, poured over the rules yet again, got frustrated and came back - and THEN.... I was ready to play.

I was doomed from the very first draw when I ended up with one of the longest possible missions in the game. I drew player cards and for the first three rounds, spending action points to discard entire hands and redraw, I finally had ONE location to play. The game would play out like this for the duration of the session as luck would fail me time and time again having to play whatever terrible and dangerous location I happened to find just to keep pace with the ever dwindling turns.

I had a pretty good #1 soldier who practically won every skirmish single-handedly, but as I neared the back half of the mission, it became clear I was running out of time. It was at this point, which you can see in the photo I shared, that I realized that sprinting to the finish is a pretty terrible battle strategy. German soldiers crawled out of every shrub and rabbit hole in Europe to greet my hapless squad. I'd like to think at least two of them managed to ditch gear and run away, but... that's a LOT of Germans.

Funny thing is that I loved the experience, and can't wait to play again. I have 4 expansion boxes already on the way to my mailbox, including some die cast figures to paint; perfectly suitable to distract me from actually playing the game more often than is probably advisable.
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10. Board Game: Sentinels of the Multiverse [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:383] [Average Rating:7.23 Unranked]
Board Game: Sentinels of the Multiverse
Dob Razil
France
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Dark Watch #15 :

Loud steps were heard coming up the stairs. No haste, only a firm resolution.
The door was opened without any prior knock.
The big man was filling the doorstep.
- Where is he ? he asked without any of his usual cheerfulness.
The Visionary had already stood up from her chair, a warm smile on her face.
- Welcome, Haka. I'm glad you could come here. He's in the room there.
She pointed at a door.
Haka frowned. He looked at her.
- Thank you. But one thing at a time. You seem to know me, and not from the books.
The Visionary was about to talk, but Haka raised a hand.
- If you come from where I think you do, do not talk.
He showed the chair behind her.
- Sit down please.
And he himself took a nearby chair while she obeyed.
- But Blade said...
- Shhh, Blade will wait. But you may not be able to.
The Visionary suddenly widened her eyes. Haka frowned.
- Ok, so you're also a psychic.
He paused for a second, opening his mind.
- You know what you have to do now, he added.
The Visionary looked at the ground, confused. Then she looked up back at Haka.
- No matter what happens to me, I came here to forewarn you about an apocalypse, the end of life on Earth !
Haka frowned and then smiled.
- An apocalypse... we'll deal with that later... Just remember you now stay isolated. We'll take care of your time travel together.
The Visionary was stunned.

He stood up, walked to the door and opened it. He entered the room and closed the door behind him.

A woman, white-haired, rather young but with an old look in her eyes, was sitting in front of a man, older, also on a chair, who seemed to impatiently wait for something. Seeing Haka enter the room suddenly lightened his face.
- Haka ! Finally ! Noone here seems to understand...
- Shut up, Ivan, abruptly said Haka, which didn't seem to trouble the man.
- Yes, sure, Haka, but now that I am back, we need to prepare for what's to come. There's no way I would have thought we would have so much time to...
- Wohoho, said Haka, I said shut up !
This time, his tone couldn't be ignored. The man stayed quiet, quickly getting back to looking at the window, mumbling nonsense.
Haka looked at the woman.
- So you brought Blade back. For which reason ?
Nightmist didn't seem pleased by Haka's manners.
- I asked you to come only because Blade incessantly insisted. We had a good reason to rescue him,
- The girl next room's apocalypse, commented Haka.
- yes, continued Nighmist, but the Blade we found back there is not the one we had expected. Sorry to annoy you, but we thought something is wrong here, something important, and that your being here could help us with this matter.
Haka stayed quiet and looked at Baron Blade.
- Ivan, is that you ? Are you back ?
Blade gave a grin to Haka.
- Yes, I am. I wanted to avoid a catastrophe, and couldn't find another way. He had to be stopped.
- You could have asked me, answered Haka.
- You were away, not easily reachable, and I don't know if you would have made a difference.
Haka looked surprised.
- I don't think...
- You didn't really know him, you didn't know how he was evolving, he was reaching a state noone could have matched. Even you, Haka.
Blade paused.
- Even you.
Haka shrugged.
- And then, what did you do ? How did you become this nonsense maniacal villain ? What does it have to do with him ?
Blade pursed up his lips.
- Well, I had so little time, I improvised, and the only trick I found was to take his evil out of him and project it into myself.
- This is the way you explain his exemplary behaviour and your being a crazy man ? asked Haka, irritated.
Blade stood up, tense.
- I don't have to justify anything. If I had not intervened, noone could have.
- Even Dawn ? asked Haka with a strange smile.
Hearing her name seemed to annoy Blade, who mumbled a bit once again before answering.
- Dawn was all too happy to see him grow, but she didn't realize, and by the time she would have reacted, it would have been too late.
Haka frowned.
- So you consider yourself a hero, you think you have saved the world.
Blade had a serious look.
- No, because I'm back. Which should mean he is too.
- But you did send him very far away, didn't you ?
- Yes, but that will never be far enough. And when he'll come back, he'll make us all pay.
Haka raised a hand to interrupt Blade. He turned to Nightmist.
- Is it the apocalypse you have been forewarned about ?
Nightmist was surprised.
- No, we were first looking for help from Dawn, who seemed to indicate Blade was the only one who could help, and after many difficulties, we could take him back. He is talking about something else, someone else he had neutralized and who will now also come back.
- And you have understood who we were talking about ?
Nightmist smiled.
- This makes no sense. No sense at all. But yes, of course I have understood. The greatest threat you are talking about, I know who it's supposed to be. It makes no sense, but you're talking about Legacy.

After some more discussion, Haka accepted to go with Blade to check on him as he was trying to take his technological tools back. The tools he had gathered before becoming the madman the whole Earth had learned to know. Haka didn't have to insist to have The Visionary come with them. The psychic had seen in Haka's mind something that had changed her, and she tried to avoid further contact with other people.

She brought them to a Blade's secret base. His soldiers there had been in standby mode for a few months, waiting for orders while maintaining the installations and keeping on training. They recognized him and did not dare say anything when they saw who was with him.
Blade entered his office and had all his soldiers out. He then went for a wall and triggered the entrance to a secret passage.
- Evil Blade happily wasn't aware of this, he explained with a grin.
They walked down a corridor and found themselves in a large room where many devices were hanging on the wall. There were also huge, closed containers.
- Aha, it's all there, Blade added.
Suddenly, The Visionary screamed and fell on the ground. She was obviously suffering great pain, holding her head in her hands. Haka frowned at Blade, who seemed perplex for a second, before taking an orb on the wall and pushing a button on it. The Visionary was instantly relieved. She got on her knees, palms on the ground, and said a few words :
- That's it, the computer, it is coming at me, it knows where I am.
She stood up, a new, terrifying look in her eyes.
From gallery of dobrazil

- It is coming, yes, and I am ready.
They heard an explosion outside. Blade quickly took a few devices and ran along with Haka and the Visionary outside. An army of bots was there.
From gallery of dobrazil

- Omnitron ! exclaimed Haka, furious.
Blade had a more relaxed attitude.
- Mmm, I have already seen this design somewhere.

Blade's soldiers lost their temper, thought Blade was a fake, and began shooting at everyone.
From gallery of dobrazil


THe Visionary was tweaking the electronic brains of the most dangerous opponents.
Haka was smashing the waves of drones coming at them.

Blade seemed to have fun. He deployed many devices that got out of the ground, or were running out of the underground containers.
From gallery of dobrazil

From gallery of dobrazil


- You did have these tools hibernating all these years ? asked Haka. I'm glad you didn't use them.
- I made sure I would not know about them, Blade answered with a grin.
And he began to strum on his bracelet.
- And you have not seen everything yet.
From gallery of dobrazil

- NO, said Haka. It's too dangerous ! There are too many potential casualties !
- Come on, it's the most accurate doomsday device one could imagine.
He was still strumming.
Haka stepped forward.
- I said NO, he insisted with a most firm tone.
- Fine, but you're missing some great technology display here. And there are more of them coming, Blade pointed at the ever more numerous bots rushing toward them.
- I'll take care of them, Haka replied.
And he indeed took care of them at once.
From gallery of dobrazil


What happened to the evil Baron ? What were Haka and he implying about Legacy ? How could time travel hurt The Visionary ? What has happened to her ? How is Omnitron linked to all this ?

You'll discover it in the next episodes of Dark Watch !
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11. Board Game: Rise of Tribes [Average Rating:7.30 Overall Rank:1011] [Average Rating:7.30 Unranked]
Board Game: Rise of Tribes
Stefan Schneider
Germany
Stockstadt
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I recently received this game in a trade and played it only once before. At the moment, there's a new kickstarter for the expansion which includes a solo mode. There's also a free pnp version so you can print out a (in my case: very) basic version of the solo rules. This morning, I downloaded them and decided to give it a try.

So, what is it about? In ancient prehistoric times, you have discovered a new land with plentiful lakes, mountains and forests (and apparently many stone rocks that shall be called dice). Your people can develop new things like basketry or find oxen or simply GROW and conquer.

It sounded great and my first play (where I just played three tribes against each other) was really enjoyable.

On your turn, you roll two dice and place them on the actions you want to take. You add your die to the line and push the other one out. Depending on what symbols are showing on the three dice now, your action might become stronger or weaker.

From gallery of gentle


Usually you have an event deck but for the solo game you replace it with some solo events. You also have three decks governing the AI behaviour. I didn't bother to print the card backs, I used a die to keep the three decks apart.

I then randomly drew a tribe. Ending up with the Daba. Each tribe can choose between one of two advantages, I decided to turn them into traders.

From gallery of gentle


With eight tribes and 16 advantages, replayability should not be an issue. And I always like the variety something like that adds.

Setup isn't that different from a normal game and you use all the normal rules when playing solo. For yourself, that is. The AI has warchiefs they place on the map as soon as they can afford them and when they've placed them all, you loose the game. You still win the game if you manage to score 15 victory points.

From gallery of gentle
From gallery of gentle


Every tile now also has a number. I didn't want to place them on the tiles themselves so I just placed them above the board, easy enough to look at. The numbers govern the way the AI moves and grows, from highest to lowest or vice versa, depending on which AI card you drew.

From gallery of gentle


The AI card tells you which dice to place where. I think it actually is cleverly done. You always know what the AI might place, so when planning your own actions take that into account. I also appreciate that the AI is very easy to manage.
The card also tells you which reward the AI will get if it fulfils the condition on the card. And you really don't want it to get it, so it gives you a very strong hint on what you should try to achieve next turn.

I played on easy, to learn the game. And it is easy to manage and I did enjoy playing it.
I also won. For a while I was worried by how many warlords had appeared on the game and just fought the enemy tribe but then I realised I hadn't bought too many lead actions to gain victory points from those. After I changed that, I won easily.

From gallery of gentle


While I enjoyed the solo game well enough, I'm actually a bit worried that it might feel too samey after a while. You always start with the same tile configuration, you always start in tile #9 and the AI in #1-3. So I do worry it might feel limited and repetitive.
At the moment, I backed the expansion with the solo version. If I only play it solo, I'm probably not going to need the rest of the expansion but I probably want to get the nice version instead of my quick pnp version. And it is a fair price for that.

I think this is a game that shines when played with more people. I can't wait to play it with my gaming group, I think it will be a hit for all of them. But it is very confrontational, there's no way you can just grow and develop your tribe in peace. But loosing all your tribe members in one tile is actually not that bad. Even if all of them get defeat and you have none in place anymore you can restart. It's not about defeating all other tribes but being the first one to get 15 victory points. Then the game ends immediately.

One thing that is a bit weird is the box for the deluxe components. I appreciate that they made one but honestly, getting all the resources in there is a pain. You have to take every single resource in hand and place it in its slot. It's actually a bit annoying and takes way too long. But the compartements are so small, they won't fit otherwise.

From gallery of gentle


All things considered, I enjoyed my first learning game a lot more than the solo option. But not willing to give it up yet and it's defenitely not a bad game at all! The solo rules are easy to understand and implement and maybe I was flat out wrong with my fear that the solo game might be getting stale after a while. Too early to tell.
Not to early to tell: I'm very happy to own the game!
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12. Board Game: Arkham Horror: The Card Game – The Dunwich Legacy: Expansion [Average Rating:8.50 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.50 Unranked]
Board Game: Arkham Horror: The Card Game – The Dunwich Legacy: Expansion
Ben Bosmans
Belgium
Mechelen
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This morning on May 1st I finished the Dunwich Legacy campaign with Jenny Barnes ... and after 8 very different adventures Jenny got killed trying to defeat Yog-Sothoth in the Lost in Time and Space final encounter.

It was a hell of a ride and the last adventure is a very diffult one.

Without Jenny’s proper weapon it was an uphill battle frankly and in the end I was beaten by 3 gigantic monsters that were spawn in 3 consecutive turns.

From gallery of Ben_Bos
.

I had a pretty good starting hand with De Luca (extra action per turn) and the extra clue seeking device from an earlier adventure, but the lack of a decent weapon killed it.

With the agenda just entering in phase 3, Jenny got killed and so the Grand Campaign ends...

I had a great time and quite frankly the story telling is fantastic. The last time I played this Dunwich campaign was more than a year ago and it is surpring how fast you forget the details of a particular adventure from a previous campaign run.

That early 2019 campaign was with 4 investigators and players and we won, but the advantage of running this same campaign after more than a year is that you forget most details and so the experience is great.

This Campaign ended with a failure but I am going to replay this adventure as a solo challenge with Jenney Barnes and try a few times more

The problem with such a long solo campaign is that you collect a lot of extra cards to put into your player deck and while most are great, your deck is simply too big to feel control over it.

So I will trim the deck with all these extra campaign cards and go with the standard 9 experience deck challenge.

I came to like this Jenney Barnes deck, so it is difficult to part with atm LOL...

Loving the game.

9.75/10.


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13. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Ancients [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:137]
Board Game: Commands & Colors: Ancients
Guido Gloor
Switzerland
Ostermundigen
Bern
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No Agricola this time.

Here's the setup of my first play in May (which started back in April and went over midnight):

Board Game: Commands & Colors: Ancients


The scenario is Adrianople 378 AD from C3i Magazine #25 (the Richard Borg version).

Historically, many Romans died, in part because they attacked before they really were ready. In Richard Borg's version, that's reflected in how the flanks are drawn back, leaving many units in rather unfortunate places (like the Medium Infantry all the way back right, or the Heavy War Machine sitting behind the hill instead of on top of it).

On the other hand, the Goths historically had their cavalry join the fight later, after the battle was already in full swing. Likewise, their cavalry is all the way in the rear ends of the flanks, and also behind infantry, which makes getting them to the front a bit tedious.

These things are rather sweet, because they simulate the background of the battle without additional rules. And another neat thing is that this is one of only two official Epic scenarios (that I'm aware of) that can be played with one set of everything without needing any blocks of different colours.

From gallery of haslo


As you can see, I made sure that I can approach the board from both sides - playing Epic is much harder without changing perspective. I also marked activated units, which I usually don't have to do, but it really was necessary here.

The Goths quickly tried to get their flanks into position. Their cavalry and warriors are much stronger in theory there, but they've got quite far to go to reach the enemy. The center on the other hand is strongly in Romans' hands at first, though the Goths have formidable defensive positions with their Wagon Laagers and Fortified Camps.

From gallery of haslo


The Roman side tried to capitalize on their strong center position. (Slanted blocks mark activated units, here after movement.) Medium Infantry beats Auxilia any day. The Goths also didn't have their Leader in a unit yet and generally have rather light troops defending their fortifications.

The Romans advanced once and fired, then closed the ranks of Medium Infantry with Valens himself in the center, and...

From gallery of haslo


...despite heavy losses, took the middle Laager, splitting the Goths' center lines.

The center saw lots of back and forth, advances and retreats, over the next turns, without much gained from either side until the end of the game.

From gallery of haslo


The Goth right flank advanced in a relatively closed formation. I hoped to bring the Heavy Cavalry into the Romans' flank, where it would have hurt real bad. As it is, the front lines consisted of Warriors, which also can hit really hard.

From gallery of haslo


The Romans on the other hand also advanced on their own right flank, taking the hill with the Heavy War Machine and supporting it with troops.

The fight around the hill did benefit the Romans, they took more flags from that. But then, that good position allowed them to hassle the enemy with their Heavy Cavalry, evading when danger drew near, and regularly forcing single advancing Goth units to retreat again (again blocking the Goth cavalry from charging).

At this point, the Romans had 7 banners to the Goths' 5 (banners with sticker side up count as two, sticker side down is one). The Roman strategic position is a lot better though: The Goths did feel the pressure from the Roman center, where more Laagers and the Fortified Camps were ripe for Roman taking, which would also have given the Roman side lots of flags.

From gallery of haslo


When the Goths' right flank did clash with the Romans' left, the battle ended up fairly even and actually, the Auxilia and light troops of the Romans managed to hold their own against the Goth Warriors surprisingly long. If the Goths would've brought their Leader in the front line, or held off with their charge a bit longer, things might have been different and they'd probably have swept the defenders away.

Or they might have lost from the Roman center anyway. And the Goths also were missing a couple cards for a really strong right charge.

From gallery of haslo


After a bloody battle on the Roman left flank against hordes of leaderless Warriors (poor Alatheus actually died, too, and was the second Goth Leader of the battle to do so), Rome counter attacked with cavalry in a Mounted Charge and took the win. Rome had suffered many losses but ultimately emerged victorious with 16 to 10 banners.

I am looking forward to getting my second set of CCA. Then, I'll be able to play most epic scenarios without mixing blocks. Yay!
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14. Board Game: Proving Grounds [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:3641]
Board Game: Proving Grounds
Antonio B-D
Luxembourg
Luxembourg
Luxembourg
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After some time just lurking from the outside (it is good sometimes to separate yourself even from BGG) I will try to be active in this list again.

Whilst my kids were watching Beauty and the Beast I played four games of this quick fun little game.

First game I had barely re-read the rules and I got trounced. Even the training scenario is challenging here. I played a second, better but still lost, and a third for finally a win.

Moving on I tried the dragon. I am going to try all the modules individually, but I really like the tension that the dragon adds, there were time that I was rerolling just to avoid the chaos in the dragon... and when that hits...

I managed to score a win just as the credits were rolling on. Nice way of spending a calm holiday afternoon
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15. Board Game: Marvel Champions: The Card Game – Black Widow Hero Pack [Average Rating:8.42 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.42 Unranked]
Board Game: Marvel Champions: The Card Game – Black Widow Hero Pack
James Cartwright
United Kingdom
Spilsby
LINCS
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My pre-order finally arrived today. I played it straight out of the pack against basic Rhino. I thought I would trying staying in alter-ego form and getting some extra cards from the Alter-ego action. This was a mistake as Rhino got some big boosts and quickly finished the main scheme. I setup again and this time switched to Hero form, unfortunately with only 9 hits points Black Widow didn't last long. I decided to deck build, keeping the justice aspect I changed some cards out and added some different basic cards. This time I was finally able to defeat Rhino but it took a long time. I went through my deck three times and the encounter deck nearly twice as well as switching from alter-ego to hero multiple times.

From gallery of Rindel


I decided to have one more game and swapped Justice for Leadership as I have always had better luck with that aspect. Well Rhino didn't stand advance with Black Widow using some of her big cards to reduce threat and the allies attacking and blocking when needed I soon won with out even taking any damage.

From gallery of Rindel


Here are some of the new cards I found useful.

From gallery of Rindel


Rapid Response as well as being a preparation card work great with Mockingbird. I didn't realize how many surges there where until I used espionage. I often got Winter Soldier out for free. Counterintelligence was very useful if I needed to be in alter-ego for any reason and Rhino got a big threat boost I could cancel.

Summary: Another Avenger to play , deck is more thinky than most others. I found it to be not a bad deck, better than Thor but worse than Captain America. Looking forward to FFG hopefully doing more with the Shield keyword. I was lucky with my games in that I avoided Shadow of the past.

thumbsup New Avenger to play.
thumbsup Some interesting new cards and strategies.
thumbsupthumbsdown Found it hard to pull of the Black Widow actions but that could just be me needing more practice.
thumbsdown Didn't like the artwork.
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16. Board Game: Pocket Landship: The Second Front [Average Rating:8.05 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.05 Unranked]
Board Game: Pocket Landship: The Second Front
ron E
United States
Washington
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This session ended in a LOSS - (22.8 Enemy Value) - Played The Second Front - All Enemy Cards and Strike Cards chosen at random - Enemy Cards were deployed in a blind draw

From gallery of airzonk1


Finished with Sponsons (1), Forward Cannon (3) and Landship Hull (0) - My 2 randomly drawn strikes were Artillery Strike & Mine Field - neither was used in gameplay - Final Battle was not reached - The enemy had 4 of 9 units eliminated ----- Mine Field, Infantry Squad, Badger Class Landship & Elite Infantry Squad

From gallery of airzonk1


While having the following units remain: Front Line: Badger Class Landship (5), Medium Artillery (2) & Bobcat Class Landship (3) - 2nd Row: Bison Class Landship (7) & Badger Class Landship - both unexposed -------------- A very fun challenge!
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17. Board Game: Chocolate Factory [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:2049]
Board Game: Chocolate Factory
Chocolate Factory is a game I just recently discovered. I've given it a couple of tries and I really like it so far.

From gallery of john5443


From gallery of john5443


thumbsup The varying solo goals provide great replayability.
thumbsup The tactile feel of the chocolate pieces is very pleasant.
thumbsup As the game progresses, your abilities quickly extend. This makes for some nice stress in the beginning (never gonna reach those goals) with a satisfying resolution in the end.

thumbsdown The player boards are prone to warping.

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18. Board Game: Mint Tin Mini Skulduggery [Average Rating:8.00 Overall Rank:6641]
Board Game: Mint Tin Mini Skulduggery
ron E
United States
Washington
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From gallery of airzonk1


This session was a WIN - I was able to defeat the Spectre (AI) as he finished the game with 11 points vs my 15 points by games end - Spectre had 0 Crystal Skulls remaining & I also had 0 Crystal Skulls remaining by games end -- Skulduggary was not activated during the game - "5" was the Spirit for the game - All-Time Record: 5 Wins & 6 Losses
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19. Board Game: Flight Leader [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:5341]
Board Game: Flight Leader: A Game of Air-to-Air Jet Combat Tactics, 1950-Present
Joe Preiser
United States
Federal Way
Washington
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I’ll be getting to this after yardwork
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20. Board Game: Fields of Arle [Average Rating:8.09 Overall Rank:58]
Board Game: Fields of Arle
Bert Peinlich
Germany
Bayern
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My first solo attempt with Fields of Arle: Tea & Trade, which I only played with my wife before. It still fits the wall-table, but things get a little bit tight.
From gallery of Bert Peinlich


Playing with the expansion apparently leads to higher scores (I scored 130), as I always score above the solo score mentioned in the original rule book. Is there a new "you win"-score for the expansion?

From gallery of Bert Peinlich


thumbsup take care of your land and see it prosper
thumbsup great gameflow and mechanics
thumbsup interesting decisions and lots of ways to win

thumbsup nice expansion (with even more interesting decisions)

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21. Board Game: Maximum Apocalypse [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:1197]
Board Game: Maximum Apocalypse
From gallery of stillxill

Brought this out to the table, long since last time.

Played one of the early scenarios on normal difficulty, got completely crushed..
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22. Board Game: Zombicide: Black Plague [Average Rating:7.69 Overall Rank:169] [Average Rating:7.69 Unranked]
Board Game: Zombicide: Black Plague
David Griffin
United States
Marietta
Georgia
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Took this thing down only to re-discover how many rules in this game kind of annoy me. Several rules I don't play:
1. Zombie split rule (please, magic amoeba zombies?)
2. Target priority rule (nice try designers but no thanks)
3. No line of sight from vaults (ignore this one too)
4. Friendly fire (my house rule allows a character to spend an extra action to aim so that he either hits or misses, but doesn't hit fellows).

Is it still ZBP? Not sure. Maybe I'm not really cut out for this game. Even with all this, I had a heck of a time just surviving.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

Six characters is a lot to manage, but the dashboard makes it possible. I don't like how few hit points they have. I also don't like the one character kills a bunch and every character suffers the being at a higher level thing, but it's a pretty integral part of the game.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

Jeez, what a start to the game. I had to back off, let them come, and then had I been playing the game as written, I think my ranged fire would have hit the fatties (not really viable, even with all the extra starter weapons I gave my characters). Without the target priority rule, this was manageable, though I took damage.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

Man why do I even play this game? Lucky I had the barbarian. I had to really hack my way through the hordes to get through all these scum to try to kill the necromancer. I wouldn't have won but Sean Connery (or the figure that is supposed to be him) went off by himself into the vaults and pretty much saved the party. Hard, brutal and an endless supply of zombies with an extra spawn from the first 2 turns.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

Sigh! Thrud mowed them down while Xena (ummm... Xuxa) killed anything she touched including fatties and abominations. Again, only my added characters from the kickstarter saved me here.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

While the rest of the party are hip deep in zombies, Connery goes to the cellar, opened up the other door and killed the two fatties with her brand new vault weapon (essentially a heavy duty crossbow with spikes mounted on it). Yeah! Lucky spawn meant he could hop up, take 2 objectives and meet the rest of the party.
From gallery of carbon_dragon

Fought our way to the other corner of the board, through the underground, up to spawn a horde of zombies and then fought our way through, not being overwhelmed because that room is so cut off from the rest of the zombies. Worked out well, but lucky.

I like the art of this game and the basic structure but there is a lot which I don't like, such as the sense of being totally overwhelmed. No plan survives very many rounds. I like more order and less chaos. I kind of feel like Massive Darkness is a better version of this game.
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23. Board Game: D-Day Dice (Second Edition) [Average Rating:7.72 Overall Rank:2997] [Average Rating:7.72 Unranked]
Board Game: D-Day Dice (Second edition)
Frankie Bones
United States
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Another play, another loss on Gold Beach. I didn't even make it to the bunker as my troops were torn up on the beach. This was a fun map and more interesting than the previous two. I can see why people like this game so much, I am just not sure it is a long term keeper for me.

I also have not owned the first edition in some time, but I don't see much difference with the two versions. Are there more cards in the 2nd edition? More maps? Anyone interested in this game can definitely go for the first edition I believe and get the same experience.

I found the strategy guide and already learned some tips. Going to give Gold Beach another go.

From gallery of BrokenAxe
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24. Board Game: Maquis [Average Rating:7.39 Overall Rank:1438]
Board Game: Maquis
Brad Yarhouse
United States
Grand Rapids
MI
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Won in 13th round, if the mission hadn’t immediately been achieved, I would have lost by the round end from bad morale maybe a problem only having one resistance member left! The missions, which I have failed at this combo in the past was ‘aid the spy’ and ‘double agent’. It has been 6 plays since my last win!
From gallery of byarhouse

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25. Board Game: Terraforming Mars [Average Rating:8.43 Overall Rank:4]
Board Game: Terraforming Mars
JC
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
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Terraforming Mars + Prelude + Elysium
Tharsis Repulic Corporation
Won with 75 VP

From gallery of jeche


Terraforming Mars is my most played game and my comfort game.
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