As I continue my Gamer Goals for 2022. I got to play a couple of new board games and a few that I haven’t played for a while.
Dragonland (2002) – new to my table
Race around the board and collect sets of gemstones and dragon eggs, use special tokens to ride a dragon, collect extra gems, or other little bonuses!
A bit more complicated than Candyland but not by much. Pretty quick to learn once we got through the instructions. There are a few material problems my table is looking to home craft solutions for it. A issue we had was that each player has 3 workers of green, red, and blue, differentiated by their shape (we are planning on painting the tops to show which player they belong to). We also plan on adding a token guide to the player screen. There aren’t many of kinds of tokens, but it would be handy. It included its own dice tower (assembly required, but it also had to be taken apart so it could fit in the box). I would love to see a fold your own dice tower like this in a D&D beginner’s box.
Tower of Babel (2005) – old favourite
Gain victory points by contributing building material cards, completing Wonders, and by collecting sets of resource tokens.
I enjoy this game! It’s pretty quick, requires some co-operation to achieve victory, and with a pretty simple set of mechanics. On your turn, you can pass (everyone collects a resource card) or build. On a build action, you choose a wonder and a resource needed to build it and the other players offer resources cards that you can accept or refuse. If you refuse, they gain victory points, 1 per correct resource offered. If you accept, they get to add tokens of their color towards ownership of the building. When complete, full points are awarded to the most ownership, half that to the second most, and 3 points to everyone else who contributed. The twist is if you accept resources from someone who includes a trade card, they collect the token but you get to add your ownership tokens instead of them. It reminds me a bit of 7 Wonders, but I find it simpler and quicker.
Decorum (2022) – new to my table
Attempt to achieve fulfillment by completing secret interior decorating goals (must have red in every room, two styles of decor in every room, no blue on the lower level, etc.). You’ve only got so much time to meet everybody’s goals or else you lose the game / get kicked out of the house.
I enjoyed it! It’s a social deduction game with a twist. instead of someone being the traitor, it’s more about trying to determine what the goals of other players are based on their reaction (‘Hate it’, ‘meh’, ‘Love it’, etc. without table talk revealing those goals). Every five turns, at the house meeting, you get to reveal to another player one of your secret goals. I could totally see a much stripped down version of this being used as a team building exercise. at our table, some roleplaying emerged as we argued about where to put grandmother’s curio of a robot holding a spoon and the bathroom being too cluttered to bring joy. Once we lost the game, we felt compelled to see if all our goals could actually be achieved (they could). It also has modules of different scenarios and challenges and I look forward to unlocking others.
What the Heck (card game) – old favourite
You have a hand of cards, numbered 1 to 15. Pick the card that will be the highest to collect positive score cards or avoid negative score cards. Play until all 15 cards have been used and then add up your score cards.
It is a quick and simple game and easily accessible to a wide range of ages. I picked up this game, literally thinking “What the heck, for a card game less than $10 these days is rare” and have been really happy with it. It’s a common end of night game that requires little thought. If you enjoy games like this but with a bit more bite, check out Get Bit.
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