Reviews - Competitive Games

Dice Throne (Mind Bottling Games) Board Game Review

"Do I just hate games?" I wondered as I played Dice Throne. "I'm pretty sure I don't hate games, but I'm starting to feel like I hate games." 

Dice Throne is an extremely well put together game that supports 1v1, 2v2 and 3v3 combat, with a total of six different characters: barbarian, monk, moon elf, pyromancer, shadow thief, and paladin. Each of these characters comes with their own deck, board, and dice, and everything fits neatly within their own assorted slots. The game feels good. It looks good. And there's a lot going on in it.


Fallout Game Review (Fantasy Flight Games)

"Well, i guess I have to play Fallout." 

"You don't have to."

"I'm going to, though."

I always hesitate when I see a board game come out based on an existing IP. 80% of them are mindless cash-ins: reskins of old games that add nothing to the mechanics. But that doesn't mean I'm not susceptible to them, either. Slap Fallout on pretty much anything, and I'll be there.


Century: Spice Road

An attractive, well-themed game, Century: Spice Road is a competitive resource management game in which players collect cards that allow them to acquire and transform four different types of spices. Throughout the game players develop special sequences of creating, trading, and upgrading their spices, which allows them to purchase cards that give them victory points. Once a player has collected five cards, the game ends. 


Asking for Trobils

Born on Kickstarter in 2014, Asking for Trobils is a space-themed worker placement game in which your task is to throw the trobils into the sun -- before they consume us all. Supporting up to seven players, Asking for Trobils is a relatively fast-paced game with a "bouncing" mechanic; when players are bounced off the board, they get to reposition themselves.


Nefarious: The Mad Scientist Game!

For some reason, the "evil scientist" genre never particularly appealed to me. Don't get me wrong, I loved Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-long Blog -- and the 60% of Young Frankenstein that isn't horrifying by modern standards. But somewhere in between the minions and the constant influx of bespectacled, white lab adorned madmen, I just got lost. Perhaps it's because the trope is so strangely specific. Perhaps it was just over-saturation.



I first encountered Dimension at Gencon in, you know, the ordinary way -- bumping up against plastic picnic tables and immediately hearing a row of curses. Dimension is a timed strategy game that also relies on some dexterity. Not a lot of dexterity, but more than you get from a flimsy table covered in plastic sheeting. In Dimension, players have seconds to organize eleven or fewer balls in a pyramid, following certain rules. These rules can be not only complicated but even directly contradict each other. Some example rules include:


Betrayal at Baldur's Gate

Betrayal at Baldur's Gate is, at its heart, a re-skin of Betrayal at House on the Hill -- if you know how to play one, you know how to play the other. But because it does have a unique setting, different scenarios, and some different gameplay elements, it doesn't feel like a repeat of the original. 


Super Motherload

Mining doesn't sound fun, but Super Motherload isn't really a mining game. On the surface, Super Motherload is a simplified deck builder with a resource map. Digging a little deeper (sigh), there's actually quite a bit of strategy, especially when you start tacking on additional actions and activating card powers.