Offline games renaissance

edited July 2001 in Gaming
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  • edited December 1969
    Apparently, during the last decade or so while I've been heavily into computer gaming, there's been a resurgence of quality "normal" game development centered in Germany. I got a pointer to Funagain Games from a fellow Quake player and OMG... I've spent an amazing amount of time browsing through there over the past few days. This sort of stuff reminds me of the cool quirky games I used to see advertised in Dragon magazine. :-) Or, for that matter, that would sometimes come with Dragon magazine in pull-out and punch-out form. Except with great production values.

    It's 100% certain that I'm going to acquire some of this stuff. The only question is what to go after first. In my own little obsessive-compulsive way I've been researching review sites and award lists and come up with a list of around 40-50 games that I'm going to take a closer look at. They range from being heavily themed to lightly themed to abstract, with all sorts of different formats, and different levels of complexity and play length. I'm going to list them below roughly grouped by format in case anyone else wants to check them out... or tell me how they are, if you're already familiar with some of them. The links are to the games' pages on Funagain, since those pages have reviews as well as links to other info about the games.

    But first I should probably list this one by itself:

    It seems like Settlers is "the" game to have these days. I guess like Risk or Monopoly were at the height of their popularity. There are all sorts of sequels and expansion sets for it too. Seems like a bit of an RTS. :-)

    Here's the others that caught my eye:

    Board games Card games Tile-laying games Abstract games I highly recommend checking out at least a handful of the above links. Some are weird, some are very imaginitive, some are full of neat little bits and pieces that make my fingers itch to play with them. I'll keep y'all posted as my research and acquisition progress. :-) I think it would be cool to whip out a few games like some of these at the next Gathering! Don't know how many of us are non-computer gamers too, but I imagine it's got to be a pretty large number.

  • edited December 1969
    Re: Offline games renaissance

    the last wcg, we played a few non-comuter games. One was a card game called 'apples and oranges' that was quite fun. There has been talk about doing a Diplomacy game at a gathering, but the time needed for that game is rather significant. I'm always up to learn new games, bring something you think we'd find fun and I'm game - just get your bootie to the next one! (:

    Conner
  • edited December 1969
    I'm going to direct Bachhus to this post...

    You'll see why when he responds. (Assuming he's got the time).

    Alternatively, of course, you can stop by the OFH. It's moved again, the required linkage follows.

    The Old Folks' Home (still temporary)
  • edited December 1969
    hey now...

    It's called "Apples to Apples" =) I got one of the 2 expansions now too. more exciting words! hehe =)

    the last wcg, we played a few non-comuter games. One was a card
    game called 'apples and oranges' that was quite fun. There has
    been talk about doing a Diplomacy game at a gathering, but the
    time needed for that game is rather significant. I'm always up
    to learn new games, bring something you think we'd find fun and
    I'm game - just get your bootie to the next one! (:

    Conner

  • edited December 1969
    Played a few of these...

    *snip*

    But first I should probably list this one by itself:

    The Settlers of Catan It seems like Settlers is
    "the" game to have these days. I guess like Risk or
    Monopoly were at the height of their popularity. There are all
    sorts of sequels and expansion sets for it too. Seems like a bit
    of an RTS. :-)

    Settlers is pretty popular in board gaming circles... it's an ok game, I've played it several times. The random placement of the tiles and the random dice rolling for resources can be a bit frustrating, even though it's "fair" randomness. The more board gaming I do, however, the more I dislike dice for determining success or failure. Give me random cards in my hard and let me make do with what I've got, but damnit, don't let me get screwed if I do everything right just cuz the dice don't like me =)

    Here's the others that caught my eye:

    Board games
    Adel Verpflichtet 3-5 players
    Barbarossa 3-6 players
    Capitol 2-4 players
    Carolus Magnus 2-4 players
    El Grande 2-5 players

    I've played El Grande. It's ok. I don't remember it being super awesome or anything. It's one of those games that can drag if someone is taking forever to do their turn (man I hate that =) ).

    Expedition 2-6 players
    Kahuna 2 players
    Kill Doctor Lucky 2-8 players

    all the cheapass games are great fun =) Kill Doctor Lucky and Save Doctor Lucky are both good ones.

    Medici 3-6 players
    Medina 3-4 players
    Mississippi Queen 3-5 players

    Yeah! Mississippi Queen is cool. Some good strategy determining where to go, when to pick up the Belles, and when to burn all that coal on a mad dash.... I like. The expansion for this is good too, giving the players who're behind a better chance of catching up.

    Ra 3-5 players
    Samarkand 2-5 players
    Save Doctor Lucky 3-7 players
    Stephenson's Rocket 2-4 players
    Taj Mahal 3-5 players
    The Great Brain Robbery 3-7 players
    Card games
    Bohnanza 2-7 players
    Frank's Zoo 4-7 players

    Woo hoo, Frank's Zoo! =) Hehe, I like this game, even tho everyone else makes fun of me for it. We always play this when we're waiting for a lane at the bowling alley or when we're waiting for some pizza. A cheap game, that's easy to pick up and pretty fun to play. Similiar to the card games "13" or "Asshole", but more variety in strategies. The point system can make things more strategic, but when you're just trying to teach some new people the game and pass the time it's easy to modify the rules and streamline things.

    One card game you don't mention is Falling. This game is awesome =) It's a "real time" card game, where one person is the dealer, and everyone else is falling. The goal is to be the last person to hit the ground. ;) The dealer selects a "pace" with which he deals out cards one-by-one around the table. Once he gets to like the bottom 5 cards in the deck, people start going "splat", one by one. ;) Players can then play the cards either on themselves or other people. Like a "skip" makes the dealer skip you, and a split creates a new pile for you, so now the dealer gives you 2 cards every time he gets to you... there's some decent strategy about how you want to get cards dealt to you to ensure you have tons of skips and stops ready to play as the dealer gets near the end... It's a really chaotic and fun game. :) Cheap too. ($10 or so) And hey, a round takes like 5 min to play. Takes a decent number of people to be fun, however.

    Give Me The Brain 3-8 players
    Lost Cities 2 players
    Modern Art 3-5 players
    Ohne Furcht und Adel 3-7 players
    Schotten-Totten 2 players
    Tabula Rasa 2-4 players
    The Big Cheese 3-6 players
    The Big Idea 3-6 players
    Tile-laying games
    Big City 2-5 players
    Carcassonne 2-5 players
    Die Mauer 3-6 players
    Die neuen Entdecker 2-4 players
    Drunter & Druber 2-4 players
    Safari Jack 2-4 players
    The Princes of Florence 3-5 players
    Through the Desert 2-5 players
    Tigris and Euphrates 2-4 players
    Tikal 2-4 players

    Tikal is fun =) Haven't played it in awhile so I don't remember all that much... I think it's fairly typical to other collection games, where there's many different strategies to winning... you can spend your time building up 1 area, or expanding to lots of areas.

    Abstract games
    Headquarter 2 players
    Octi 2-4 players
    Olix 2 players
    Quoridor 2 players
    Saturn 2-4 players
    TAMSK 2 players
    Torres 2-4 players

    Torres is badass! A very strategic "castle building" game. It's funny, when we play this, everyone is usually dead silent cuz they're all examining the board and plotting their next moves... I like this game because little is left to chance... If you're planning ahead and pick up on the other players play styles, you can succeed. If you just try to do you own thing without exploiting the other players, however, you tend to fall behind in a hurry. DBO always wins by like 3 pts (out of like 2-300 total) when we play this. Annoying. =) hehe

    Other games I highly enjoy that you might want to check our are "Quests of the Round Table", which is a 2-4 player card game. It has a very intersting scoring method which encourages pysch games and bluffing. None of those damn dice either. =) I likes.

    Then there's an old board game called Power Barons which I used to play a ton, it's also a card game which deals a lot with bluffing... Then there's Wiz-war, which is a fun little 4 player game dungeon / treasure stealing game, though it's possible to be a bit unbalanced if someone gets all the good cards. A lot of people like roborally, but I think it sucks. =) Games where you hafta wait for like an hr for people to take their bloody turns are annoying... I like games where everyone can stay involved and interested at all times. Anyway, I've blown enough time at work. =)

    You should check out your campus gaming club (i'm sure you have one). We've got a couple of guys who collect board games and literally have hundreds of them. Games are often spendy, especially if you hafta import em from Germany.... it often helps to play games before buying them so you get a chance to see whatcha like.

    Tribalance 2-3 players
    I highly recommend checking out at least a handful of the
    above links. Some are weird, some are very imaginitive, some are
    full of neat little bits and pieces that make my fingers itch to
    play with them. I'll keep y'all posted as my research and
    acquisition progress. :-) I think it would be cool to whip out a
    few games like some of these at the next Gathering! Don't know
    how many of us are non-computer gamers too, but I imagine it's
    got to be a pretty large number.

    ~Blackbeard

  • edited December 1969
    [b]Re: Offline games renaissance[/b]

    [quote]
    Don't know
    how many of us are non-computer gamers too, but I imagine it's
    got to be a pretty large number.

    [/quote]
    Well I haven't played any of these myself. Actually, I did try Settlers once, but I never got past the first half of the rules. I think Charon plays that a lot.

    I myself like more of the "traditional" games... I play a lot of backgammon, mainly on FIBS (Web) (Telnet). I sometimes play other games on Playsite (Scrabble, Hearts, Go-moku, Cribbage) during the term if a bunch of us are in the lab together and want a break from coding. Used to play a LOT of Asshole (and its sister game, Bullshit) in high school... before class, after class, during class...

    Some of us lucky Mac-enabled people used to play Asshole in big 7-player games a year or so ago. It's hosted at GameRanger's site now.

    --MuffinHead

    [img]http://www.clanplaid.net/~muffin/questionmuffin.gif[/img]
  • edited December 1969
    Re: Offline games renaissance

    Well, as I spent a year as the president (I got suckered into it, dont ask, im not even that involved in the club....) of my campus's gaming club (the type BB was talking about), I guess I should put in a few words.

    Settlers: Well, once you get the 6 player expansion, there are ways to have "set" tiles that gets rid of a lot of the randomness. :)

    Falling: Yeah, awesome game.

    Also, check out "Lunch money," and "King of the elves." Both are card games with no dice rolling involved. King of the elves is a particular favorite of mine, very strategic, building your hand for a killer run at the end.

    Witch hunt is another neato game.

    Diplomacy, well, I tried an 8player game of that... once. We started at 11 am, stopped for lunch, started again, stopped for dinner... at about midnight, with 3 people left, we said "screw it," and called it a draw. Fun game, but too damn long.

    Illuminati is another very cool card game.

    Erm, Axis and Allies is one of the great games from the last great group.

    Check out cheap-ass games, they are, as they say, very cheap. Basically, they assume that you have pennies, and dice, and that you can use those, so they manage to make very cheap games.

    Also, check out buttonmen. Cool concept

    Erm, anyone in the boston area who wants to, can email me for various people who organize gaming nights.

    MS
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Diplomacy...[/b]

    [quote]
    Diplomacy, well, I tried an 8player game of that... once. We
    started at 11 am, stopped for lunch, started again, stopped for
    dinner... at about midnight, with 3 people left, we said
    "screw it," and called it a draw. Fun game, but too
    damn long.

    [/quote]
    last year, we did some 'play by e-mail/HL' diplomacy games with CP and friends. http://diplomacy.clanplaid.net/ is the home page, though I sort of left game 3 in 'unfinished' format but Zagreus won playing Italy, which is a feat (:

    Anyway, when fall hits and people have more time inside, I'd like to try again. It was fairly fun (:

    Conner


  • edited December 1969
    Re: Diplomacy...

    last year, we did some 'play by e-mail/HL' diplomacy games with
    CP and friends.

    Actually, online, with a month long timescale, might be the only way I would ever subject myself to that agony again.

    The pain! The pain!
    :
    :)


  • edited December 1969
    Re: Offline games renaissance

    As Rojay pointed me here, I felt I should pipe up and provide a good response. I should mention, that I play boardgames at least once a week (Wednesday evenings at Neutral Ground in Mt. View California. If anyone is close by, please drop in and join us) and have a rather large collection of games, as a few of the Geezers and my brother (TOFU) will attest.

    First off, if you're serious about boardgames, you need to subscribe to the rec.games.board newsgroup and read the postings there for a week or so.

    Second, of the games you've listed, I've played all but a few, and can comment on most of those I've played if you really want me too. I should also point out, that the main difference I have seen over the years, is that more attention is being paid to the authors of the boardgames, not the manufacturer. You will find the likes of Klaus Teuber, Wolfgang Kramer, Michael Kiesling, Bruno Faidutti, Alan Moon and of course, Reiner Knizia.

    Settlers of Catan is a great game to start with (though there are a few detractors) and suggest you also get the Seafarers of Catan expansion set. Once you have those under your belt, Mayfair has just released the English language version of Starfarers of Catan, which is most likely my favorite game of the series... and has the nicest "bits" (game pieces)

    I note that you already know of Funagain Games on the net. Also of note is Rio Grande Games, which produces English language versions of many German made games (and are available through Funagain)

    Going through your list...

    Here's the others that caught my eye:

    Board games
    Adel Verpflichtet 3-5 players
    Enjoyable and best with 5 players. From the author of Settlers of Catan, Klaus Teuber

    Carolus Magnus 2-4 players
    I'd personally pass on this

    El Grande 2-5 players
    Arguably my favorite game, I will never pass up an opportunity to play. The game has bidding, simultaneous moves, hidden information and is still playable in under 90 minutes

    Expedition 2-6 players
    Good game, but one which I really suck at.

    Kahuna 2 players
    One of a number of two-player games from Kozmos/Rio Grande Games. I enjoy it, but there are others I prefer of the series.

    Kill Doctor Lucky 2-8 players
    A riot of a game from Cheapass Games. Best with four or more players. The basis of the game is Clue, as the victim in Clue is, you guessed it, Dr. Lucky... In this game, you are the various people trying to Kill Dr. Lucky, without being seen.

    Medici 3-6 players
    Simply the best auction game, best with a full six players. I prefer the German version, but the Rio Grande version has these nice boats for your cargo that were not issued with the german game.

    Medina 3-4 players
    This is a recent release, and one of the tougher brain burner games I've played. Nice bits too...

    Mississippi Queen 3-5 players
    Okay, I'd pass on it for now.

    Ra 3-5 players
    If you don't have six players for Medici, then Ra is the auction game to play.

    Samarkand 2-5 players
    A Sid Jackson game that could use a little more player interaction.

    Save Doctor Lucky 3-7 players
    Cheapass game... prequel to Kill Dr. Lucky. You have to save him from the sinking ship, so you can kill him in Kill Dr. Lucky, so you can figure out who done it in Clue... got that???

    Stephenson's Rocket 2-4 players
    It's a rail game, that's really a stock market game, using Railroads as the theme.A great and short game of limited actions.

    Taj Mahal 3-5 players
    A game of influence and placement. Knowing when to back out is as important as knowing how to pick what to fight over.

    The Great Brain Robbery 3-7 players

    Card games
    Bohnanza 2-7 players
    The best of the card games listed here. best for 4 to 6 players. Who'd a thunk a game about planting bean fields would be so fun?

    Frank's Zoo 4-7 players
    A varient of the Great Dalmuti/Corporate Shuffle type card game. Quite enjoyable.

    Give Me The Brain 3-8 players
    Cheapass strikes again. Great fun, even my mom likes to play this game.

    Lost Cities 2 players
    From the Kozmos two-player game series. The best selling and fastest game to learn and play. Wonderful imho...

    Modern Art 3-5 players
    Actually, Modern Art is not a card game, but rather an Auction based boardgame. It's also equal to Ra and Medici from my perspective.

    Ohne Furcht und Adel 3-7 players
    Better with 6 or 7 players. Also called Citadelles.

    Schotten-Totten 2 players
    German game that was re-issued (with a few modifications) as Battleline from GMT games. Uses poker as the basis for the game.

    Tabula Rasa 2-4 players
    The Big Cheese 3-6 players
    The Big Idea 3-6 players

    Missing but should consider... Fluxx from Loony Labs. Yes, some games can go overly long for the game, but no two games are the same. The game rules starts as Draw One, Play One. As you play cards, you can change the rules, allowing more cards to be drawn or played or both. you can also add winning Goals, which prior to the start of the game, there are none...

    And then my personal fav, Mü & Mehr, which is one of the best trick taking game there are.

    Plus, Mamma Mia, a game about making Pizzas. It is really a stack memory game, but most fun when constantly using bad Italian accents while playing.

    Tile-laying games
    Big City 2-5 players
    Nice bits, decent play.

    Carcassonne 2-5 players
    Just released late last year and just won the last Spiel des Jahres, which id the Game of the Year in Germany. I enjoy playing this a lot.

    Die Mauer 3-6 players
    Die neuen Entdecker 2-4 players
    New and improved version of Entdecker

    Drunter & Druber 2-4 players
    Safari Jack 2-4 players
    The Princes of Florence 3-5 players
    Create works of art and display them for the most prestige is the theme. A well balanced game that makes one balance auctions and actions.

    Through the Desert 2-5 players
    In this case, the tiles are lovely pastel colored plastic camels. Don't let that detract you, this is a great game...

    Tigris and Euphrates 2-4 players (Reiner Knizia)
    It took over the Internet Top 100 Boardgames from Settlers a while back, and does not look likely to relinquish that lofty position anytime soon. I still prefer El Grande over this, but not much else...

    Tikal 2-4 players
    I actually have come to nearly dislike Tikal, and much prefer Java or Torres (see below) of the three games from the same authors, Wolfgang Kramer & Michael Kiesling

    Abstract games
    Headquarter 2 players
    Octi 2-4 players
    Olix 2 players
    Quoridor 2 players
    Saturn 2-4 players
    TAMSK 2 players
    Torres 2-4 players
    I'd only recommend Torres among abstract games for now. One of my favorite games to play.

    Tribalance 2-3 players

    Internet Top 100 Games
  • edited December 1969
    Diplomacy and other games

    Falling: Yeah, awesome game.
    One of those games you either love or hate... Sorry, I'm on the hate side of this game. Now Brawl on the otherhand...

    Also, check out "Lunch money," and "King of the
    elves." Both are card games with no dice rolling involved.
    King of the elves is a particular favorite of mine, very
    strategic, building your hand for a killer run at the end.
    For a boardgame version of KotE, try Elfenland. A very good game, and one which I find women will be more likely to play.

    Diplomacy, well, I tried an 8player game of that... once. We
    started at 11 am, stopped for lunch, started again, stopped for
    dinner... at about midnight, with 3 people left, we said
    "screw it," and called it a draw. Fun game, but too
    damn long.
    Eight player? What's the eighth country? Should only be England, France, Germany, Austri-Hungry, Italy, Turkey and Russia. And yes, wining as Italy is quite a feat.

    Illuminati is another very cool card game.
    Agreed, and the newer version has some great artwork that spices up the game play.

    Check out cheap-ass games, they are, as they say, very cheap.
    Basically, they assume that you have pennies, and dice, and that
    you can use those, so they manage to make very cheap games.
    Per my other post, yes, and of these Give me the Brain and Kill Dr. Lucky are among the best.

    Also, check out buttonmen. Cool concept
    I love Buttonmen! It's fast and easy to play and so what if it's mostly luck on the throw of the dice. With some of the type of dice, what you roll can cause great consternation on the part of your opponent.

    Erm, anyone in the boston area who wants to, can email me for
    various people who organize gaming nights.

    Ditto for the SF/SJ Bay Area.. Silicon Valley Boargamers for one...

    Silicon Valley Boardgamers
  • edited December 1969
    Giant Squid!!! [nt]


  • edited December 1969
    Re: Diplomacy and other games

    Ditto for the SF/SJ Bay Area.. Silicon Valley Boargamers for
    one...

    Ah yeah, I was fingering through their mailing list archive earlier today. They're pretty close to me.

  • edited December 1969
    [b]Re: Offline games renaissance[/b]

    Doh! I thought I had posted a response here thanking everyone for opinions. I guess I must have just previewed it and never posted.

    So, thanks and stuff. :-)

    Already found a good troll-bashing thread on r.g.b. Wheee! Although, I was all rooting for the anti-troll leader until he busted out this line:

    Sorry, all games can't be Quake. Why not forget all about strategy games and play a nice First Person Shooter. Not thinking there at all.
    Oh well, everyone has their misconceptions. ;-)

  • edited December 1969
    Re: hey now...

    It's called "Apples to Apples" =) I got one of the 2
    expansions now too. more exciting words! hehe =)

    Developed right here in my hometown too! A great game... and my wife's current fav.



    image
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Good Stuff[/b]

    I got in on this late (my RPG night!) but BB and Bacchus said most of what I was going to say anyway. BB in particular has played just about the same ones I was going to comment on... Strange :) We have some good friends in town that have well over 100 games and they are always seeking out better ones. This couple has re-introduced us to this round of great games over the past ten years. We even set up a regular gaming night a few years ago that was often attended by 10-20 people that got 3-5 games going a night. Great in-person, social fun!

    The only thing I'll add is that soon after I got the bug to play board games again, I remembered those Dragon mag games from my early years. There is only one name you need: Tom Wham. I soon ran out to a used fantasy/sci-fi bookstore and found two of his games in old Dragons that I really enjoyed playing: King of the Table Top and Elefant Hunt. The overwhelming classic, The Awful Green Things From Outer Space, has just been re-released by Steve Jackson Games within the last year: http://www.sjgames.com/awfulgreen/ .

    Finally, once you buy/play Settlers, check out the great Java version at: http://sunlab-01.cs.nwu.edu/~thomas/java/soc/ . There are no rules there (last I checked), but that is as it should be. You should be at least learning these games in person, imho. Down with on-line gaming!!! Oh... wait... ;)

    Enjoy...

    [img]http://www.clanplaid.net/~charon/charon.gif[/img]
  • edited December 1969
    Re: Offline games renaissance

    Aye, fluxx is a great game. It is rather deterministic, especially with two players, but can become insanely amusing with interesting draws. Especially great when someone has been building a huge hand, and you play a hand limit card, or other neat-o things.

    "Look, I got Death and the Rocket."
    "Hmmm, is there a 'challenger' goal?"
    "Nope."

    Bohnanaza, or whatever it's called, it also a great game.

    Just played "through the desert" tonight. Interesting concept, but a bit odd. It "feels" like it should be a more complex game then it is.

    Also played "Frag," which any quake head should play. Basically, it is an FPS played on a board game. Amazingly fun with large numbers of people.
    "I move here, pull out the Flamethrower, and shoot you."
    "I play 'No Carrier,' you automatically disapear for one turn."
    "@#$%!@%"

    MS
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Re: Good Stuff[/b]

    The overwhelming classic, The Awful
    [quote]
    Green Things From Outer Space, has just been re-released by
    Steve Jackson Games within the last year:
    http://www.sjgames.com/awfulgreen/ .

    [/quote]
    Great game... a bit absurd, and a bit silly, but a great "palate clenser" after an intense 6-person game of seafarers. :)
  • edited December 1969
    Re: hey now...

    Developed right here in my hometown too! A great game... and my
    wife's current fav.

    Of the "Party" type games, I really enjoy Apples to Apples (I have both expansion sets, so there...).

    By way of explaination, Apples to Apples consists of Noun cards which players have a hand of six, and Adjective cards, which the current judging player draws and announces. The other players may play one ot two Noun cards from their hand that they think the Judge will choose as the closest match. It is important to know the judge when choosing a Noun card to be played.

    The cards are played face down and once four cards have been played, no more my be added. These are randomized so the Judge does not know who played what card.

    As an example, say the Adjective as "brilliant", and the choice of nouns were: Albert Einstein, Diamond, Fireworks, the Sun. Which noun best matches brilliant? For each of us, it could be a different choice. The player who's card is picked, gets the Adjective card and those that played cards, draw back up to six cards. The role of judge passes to the next player on the left and play continues.

    ---
    Aother party like game of recent note, is Times Up! This is essentually a boxed set of a parlor game known in some circles as "celebrities". It's your job to get your partner to figure out the name of the person (real or fictional) that's named on the card.

    It's played in three rounds. The first round, players may say anything (except the name on the card or a form of the name) make any noise or make any action to elicit a correct response. The bad news in the first round, is that you may not pass on a card. You get one minute to do this then the stack of cards that remain are passe to the next team. Play continues, until all 40 cards are found out.

    In the second round, players may only use a single word, plua any sounds and motions. Of course, you know all the cards now, so it is a little easier, save that if there are two or three baseball players, it's difficult to distinguesh one from the other.

    In the third rounds, only sound effects and actions may be used. Of course now is when the game really starts being a fun fest of laughter and applause at great actions. Also, in the second and third rounds, you may pass, but also, an icorrect guess on the part of your partner constitutes a pass.

    ---

    Okay, last topic and then I'll stop... I mentioned a series of two-player games from Kozmos, it should be Kosmos...

    Lost Cities and Kahuna were previously mentioned. I'd like to add that "Hera and Zeus", "Caesar & Cleopatra" and "Babel" are also from this series and are also quite good, if not better than Lost Cities. There are others, but of these, I can only recommend "Tally Ho", which as much as I like it, is a lighter game compared to the three I just mentioned.
  • edited December 1969
    Re: Offline games renaissance

    Is "Frag" the one that has cards to represent cheating? That doesn't sit well with me. :-)

    I think I saw it mentioned on some news site, never played it.

    The Deckmatch rules have always seemed to be cool for a game of that type. Web site seems to be down right now. :-(
  • edited December 1969
    Re: hey now...

    Lost Cities and Kahuna were previously mentioned. I'd like to
    add that "Hera and Zeus", "Caesar &
    Cleopatra" and "Babel" are also from this series
    and are also quite good, if not better than Lost Cities. There
    are others, but of these, I can only recommend "Tally
    Ho", which as much as I like it, is a lighter game compared
    to the three I just mentioned.

    Hera and Zeus is a great game... guess I have to convince other people to buy the other ones.

    I'm what's known as a "gaming mooch." I have a few pencils, one set of dice, and thats about it. I simply use other people's games, character sheets, cards, and pretty much everything else. :)
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Re: Offline games renaissance[/b]

    [quote]
    The Settlers of Catan It seems like Settlers is
    "the" game to have these days.

    [/quote]
    Settlers is a kick-ass game, and a must for anybody into table games. No question.

    From the ones you listed, I have played the following:

    [quote]
    El Grande 2-5 players
    Medici 3-6 players
    Ra 3-5 players
    Stephenson's Rocket 2-4 players
    Taj Mahal 3-5 players
    Lost Cities 2 players
    Modern Art 3-5 players
    Through the Desert 2-5 players
    Tigris and Euphrates 2-4 players
    Tikal 2-4 players

    [/quote]
    (I would not call Through the Desert a "tile laying" game. It's a camel-placing game. 8-)

    From that list, my favorites are Ra, and Taj Mahal. One that is not on your list, but that I highly recommend, is Aladdin's Dragons, another one of the hot recent games. Also, El Caballero, a sequel of sorts to El Grande, is a lot of fun.

    For those of you who like long, involved games, there is always Advanced Civilization or my personal favorite, Age of Renaissance. Of course, those games can take eight hours to play, so make sure you have plenty of time and beer.
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Oh yeah...[/b]

    I forgot, I've played Torres too. It is a blast.
  • edited December 1969
    i lik lif

    its rlly cuul with spenny tingey n stuf- u get 2 hav kidz n mke lts of ca$h n driv aroun.

    Okay, so I'm a complete amatuer board and tile gamer, hopefully you got that above. Even so there was a board game I bought in HS called 'Egomania' or 'Egomaniacs' or something that I loved. As is so often the case, I loaned it to a friend and never got it back; which means I was never able to beat my wife at it. In all probability it was some Parker Brothers junk that was never re-released and has been mercifully forgotten by now, but if you guys ever run across a copy point me it's way. :-)

    tnx i buld big h0uze now u losir n po fulk r'tirmint.

    Ramses II
  • edited December 1969
    [b]My informal gaming group[/b]

    I don't belong to any formal gaming groups, but I have some friends and try to get together with them as often as possible to play games. (Less often lately, what with the arrival of the Blood Princess.) This includes, once a year, a Labor Day extravaganza that some of them began about 5 years ago, called Bakkenalia (because their last name is Bakke and because they are overeducated). Here is a description of the games we play at these things, which is actually a pretty good classification system for non-computer games:

    German Table Games (sometimes called Cafe games)

    These aren't all German. And they don't have to be played on a table (but that helps). What we mean by "German Table Games" are games that last 30-90 minutes, that have fairly simple rules but are nonetheless very strategic. Most of the German Table Games we play are imported and distributed Rio Grande Games, a company owned primarily by our friend Jay Tummelson. The bulk of the games played at Bakkenalia are German Table Games. Examples: Settlers of Catan, Medici, Modern Art, El Grande, Tikal.

    War Games

    A slight misnomer, but as a category war games include games that are competitive like German Table games, but which are longer with slightly more complicated rules. Many are published by Avalon Hill. We play a few of these every Bakkenalia. Examples: Kingmaker, Diplomacy, Advanced Civilization, Shogun, Illuminati, Flux [Not Fluxx, but a game designed by the brother of one of the organizers], Age of Renaissance.

    Role Playing Games

    Games where you get to pretend to be someone else for a while. Usually six-player games (plus a judge/narrator) that last about four hours. It is interactive storytelling -- sort of a combination of writing a group adventure short story and acting in a play. We usually run two of these at each Bakkenalia.

    Live Action Role Playing Games (LARPs)

    These are big productions. Basically, they are big role playing games (like 20 players) that last about six hours. But unlike role playing games (which tend to be played sitting around a table in jeans and a t-shirt and eating potato chips), in LARPs people tend to put on costumes and walk around interacting in character the entire time. We run one LARP every Bakkenalia. [Note: I am one of the writers/judges of this year's LARP. Whee!]

    Train Games

    It's hard to say what these games have in common other than their association with trains. Most involve building a rail system and then running train cargo from one place to another, using the rail system you built earlier in the game. We play a few of these every Bakkenalia. Examples: British Rails, Rail Baron, Dampfrosse, Empire Builder, Freight Train, 1850.

    Card Games

    This one is self-explanatory. Bridge and poker are our favorites, but hearts and spades are nice back-ups. And then there are all the weird card games out there that don't use actual playing cards. Those are fun too.

    Party Games

    These are games that can be played in big groups. Many are take-offs of charades. Some involve singing. All are easy to play, mildly competitive, mildly silly and a lot of fun. No Bakkenalia goes by without one or two party games. Examples: Songburst, Taboo, Balderdash, True Colors, Scattergories.

    Silly Games

    This is a catch-all for games like Clay-O-Rama (creating PlayDoh creatures that squash each other) and Battle Cattle (same idea with cybered up cows) that just can't be categorized other ways. They are all about fun and weirdness, and not particularly competitive. Bakkenalia always kicks off with a silly game.

    Kid Games

    [The organizers have four kids, so there is always something like Candyland, Chutes & Ladders, etc. going on at some point]

    Yep, it's a packed Labor Day weekend. I won't be able to participate as much as I would like to this year -- see above re the advent of the Blood Princess -- but it's always fun.
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Re: My gaming groups[/b]

    Besides the Silicon Valley Boardgamers group, I also play games with a couple of small groups of friends. These are mostly RPGs (GURPS and ADD&D) but we take the occasional break and play boardgames from time to time. SVB also hosts a GamesDay event every 2 to 3 months (Saturdays from 10 AM to 11 PM) that I try to attend. (the next one is scheduled for August 11th at the Los Altos City Library)

    [quote]
    German Table Games (sometimes called Cafe games) These aren't
    all German. And they don't have to be played on a table (but
    that helps). What we mean by "German Table Games" are
    games that last 30-90 minutes, that have fairly simple rules but
    are nonetheless very strategic.

    [/quote]
    An apt description. There was a move by some to call these "Designer" games, given the acknowledgement of the game authors.

    [quote]
    Most of the German Table Games we play
    are imported and distributed Rio Grande Games, a company
    owned primarily by our friend Jay Tummelson.

    [/quote]
    Jay's a great champion of boardgamers throughout the world... I do demos of Rio Grande Games at various conventions in the SF Bay Area for Jay. This Labor day weekend, I'll be at ConQuest in Palo Alto on Rio Grande's behalf.

    Also, I am an Associate Producer and the Event Coordinator for Boardgames at KublaCon, a gaming convention held over Memorial Day Weekend in Oakland CA. http://www.kublacon.com

    Under TableTop Games (Boardgames and more) we offer many types of games, German/Designer games, Wargames, card games, party games, kids games and even games of skill, like Carabande, a racing game where players "flick" small wooden disks around a track.

    KublaCon also has games in the following categories:

    Role Playing Games
    Live Action Role Playing Games (LARPs)
    Miniatures (including Historical miniatures)
    Collectible Card Games (Magic:the Gathering and others)
    Special Events (Large scale format games, like the Giant Formula De' race track)

    Check your area, most of the large metropolitan areas will have a similar convention over President's Day, Memorial Day or Labor Day weekends.

    [url=http://www.kublacon.com]KublaCon Gaming Convention[/url]
  • edited December 1969
    [b]Like this?[/b]

    http://www.space.net.au/~geosync/digiart/page4.htm

    I will refrain from comment on Ramses II and Egomania...

  • edited December 1969
    Bacchus is the Game King

    Hey bro....

    No kidding, Bacchus plays and knows more games then anyone i know.

    Thanks for the post that started this, Johnny Law, great reading all about and seeing all this intrest.

    Tofu
  • edited December 1969
    Possibly

    There didn't seem to be any more info there on the game, though my browse was not in depth due to the lateness of the hour. ;-)

    The game wasn't quite a 'personality' game as I recall it though, it was more about making money and preventing the IRS and the other players from taking it. Then again, maybe it was a personality game from the perspective of cash. Quite complex (Perhaps unecessarily so) at times, but with a simple base premise. The box was something like that color I think, so maybe.

    Poke me if you see anything else.

    Ramses II (Avowed narcissist and rabid egomaniac)
  • edited December 1969
    I've never found another card game that I enjoy quite as much as...

    Mille Bornes.

    Dunno why. Have a fetish for that game. Fun!

    _/ C

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