Archive | April, 2013

Beat Detroit

19 Apr

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Beat Detroit is supposed to be a 1972 parody game by Antler Productions.  After playing once, I had to ask if it was actually designed by the Marquis de Sade.  Beat Detroit is basically a version of The Game of Life where nearly everything that happens to you throughout the game is negative.  The goal of the game is to simply survive 5 laps of the board, but they’ve not made that very easy at all.

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Skyline 3000

10 Apr

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I’ve been a member of the Columbus Area Boardgaming Society (CABS) for over 7 years now.  CABS has given me a lot in my time there.  Most of my friends I see outside of work are in that group and I get to play games with these friends almost every week of the year.  For the purpose of this article, though, I’ll focus on one of the other perks of being a CABS member:   the occasional free game giveaway!  These games are, to be honest, very rarely the “top shelf” games from the publishers that send them.  Often, there’s 1 or 2 desirable games, a couple “Oh yeah, I was kind of curious about that one”,  and the rest end up as sweeteners in math trades on Board Game Geek (BGG).

A few weeks ago, a friend, and fellow CABbie, asked me to take a look at one of the games that has been shuffled off to the side.  He mentioned his copy had been sitting, still wrapped, on his game shelf for over two years.  The game is Skyline 3000 by Z-Man Games.  The game has an impressive pedigree, being designed by the team of Alan Moon and Aaron Weissblum.  However, the game’s ranking languishes in the mid-2000s on BGG.  Is Skyline 3000 just a clunker from these two, or is there something more that we’re all missing?  I went to my game shelf, pulled off the still wrapped copy I had sitting there, blew off the dust, broke open the seal, and dove inside.

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The Spiel Presents: Made for Play DVDs

5 Apr

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Last year, my friends over at The Spiel podcast made a documentary about the process of making board games.  The movie is freely available to watch on Youtube and Vimeo now, but they have made DVDs available for purchase to help out the show and their plans to slowly take over the world (that’s just what I assume they’re doing with the proceeds…it’s what I’d do).

I’ll let Stephen from the Spiel describe the documentary in his own words…

” Filmed on location at Ludo Fact in Germany, Made for Play chronicles the journey a board game takes from the factory to your table. You get to see every aspect of the manufacturing process: the technology and machines, the many detailed steps, and the hundreds of people that are involved in the production of a single game. Our goal is to give you a greater appreciation of the time, effort and investment that goes into every quality board game that makes it to the marketplace and your home. The business of fun requires a lot of hard work!”

The DVD offers the movie not only in a much higher quality than the web versions, but there are also subtitles in five different languages.

If you would like to order a copy of the DVD, click on the following link: http://thespiel.net/?q=node/957

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If you’d like to watch the movie on Vimeo go here: http://vimeo.com/45796947#at=0

Or here on Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvrmG7G7XqU

 

Blazing Aces! by Reiner Knizia

4 Apr

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Today, I delve into my bookshelf to talk about a book of games.  Reiner Knizia’s 1995 book (reprinted in English by Convivium Publications, and distributed by Fred Distribution in 2007) Blazing Aces! is not just a collection of rules in book form… that would be too easy.  Instead, Blazing Aces! tries to tell an actual story which occasionally breaks into detailed rules explanations.  While the story may not be enthralling, I have found many of the games to be quite enjoyable.

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