Thank you everyone, for getting us to 50 Followers! Let's celebrate with some JackBox games on Friday. Stay tuned on Twitter for more information! I can't thank you enough!
Behind the Scenes: I'm learning a lot about audio and fixed several sound issues. I'd like to make the stream more interactive and am investigating games that viewers can play along with simultaneously. I am testing out a set up to play Codenames and Roll and Writes (think Yahtzee but with some more thought) so everyone can play together.
7/23 Mario Monday - Mario Party 2: Our hero Luigi crushed the opposition in Horror Land. Once again, we claimed all 3 bonus stars at the end and thwarted Bowser by collecting 10 stars.
Design Lessons: Horror Land introduced an interesting Day/Night mechanic that I haven't seen in tabletop board gaming. Time progresses from day to night over a few turns. There are some options and paths only available at night, and some paths only available during the day. On other maps, you can pay a Thwomp 5 coins to bypass the path he is blocking. In Horror Land, he is asleep during the night, which forces you take the other path. This can be frustrating if the star is right behind the Thwomp, but teaches you to plan carefully and pay attention to the Day/Night mechanics. Timing your the extra rolls granted by items was an interesting aspect in this map. I would love to see games incorporate the passage of time as a way to alter the board or player decisions. Have you seen this in gaming?
I remain intrigued by adapting some of the mini games into games or integrating them into larger games. I quickly mocked up some cards for Honeycomb Havoc but the scoring needs some serious thought.
7/26 Thursday - Sentinels of the Multiverse
In Sentinels of the Multiverse, players worked cooperatively to save the world from a super villain. Each player plays with their own unique super hero deck and has unique powers. There are a ton of expansions, adding new heroes, villains, and environments to battle in. What an excellent theme! There are challenges to playing around the table with friends because of the amount of stuff you have to track. Heroes grant extra bonuses that last a round, the type of damage (melee, sonic, toxic, etc...) matters to certain cards, and so forth. It can really bog down play and it's easy to forget an effect. The digital game handles all of that in the background seamlessly, so players can focus on the game and how best to thwart the evil mastermind. It is also easier to control multiple heroes on the app.
Game 1: The Wraith, Visionary, and Tempest defended Megalopolis from Ambuscade. The Wraith takes inspiration from Batman and utilizes a lot of equipment cards to deal and increase damage. Together with the alien refugee Tempest's lightning powers and the psychic abilities of Visionary mitigating draws, the trio took down Ambuscade. Ambuscade's gimmick is that he can't be damaged depending on his equipment. The game was a bit long but the heroes slogged through Ambuscade's defenses to deal the final blow.
Game 2: Baron Blade trumped Ra, Visionary, and Absolute Zero at Silver Gulch 1883. Absolute Zero is a tough hero to play. Most of his cards and abilities involve dealing cold or fire damage to himself and then transferring that damage to other targets. Ra has abilities that increase fire damage, so the two can work well together if you are careful. Unfortunately, Silver Gulch 1883 spoiled a close game when two Explosives Wagons formed a chain reactive that incapacitated (no one dies in Sentinels of the Multiverse, naturally) our heroes. Despite that ending, I really enjoyed this environment and gave it another go with a different team.
Game 3: Legacy and Tachyon, this universe's Superman and Flash, teamed up with The Scholar, the possessor of the Philosopher's Stone and chased Baron Blade through time back to the wild west. Our heroes avenged their fallen comrades and stopped Baron Blade from crashing the moon into the earth. I love this environment. Legacy has several damage bonuses and Tachyon can deal a lot of damage quickly, making this team up very fun to play. She incapacitated Baron Blade handily by speeding in for 17 damage one turn!
Game 4: Miss Information destroyed our heroes at Insula Primalis. I had to cut this stream short, but there was no chance Legacy, Tempest, Tachyon, and The Scholar were going to pull this one out. An unfortunate combination at the very start of the game made it impossible to deal damage, and it took a long time to find the cards to overcome that situation. While the heroes were desperately searching for answers, Miss Information and her Diversions wasted no time pummeling them. I have yet to beat Miss Information!
7/27 Friday - Android Extravaganza
Friday night featured some relaxing games Kingdom Builder, San Juan, and Treasure Hunter. Kingdom Builder is one of my all time favorite games, and deservedly led to Donald X. Vaccarino's 2nd Spiels des Jahres award in 2012. Check out Tuesday's post for 5 Times the Spiel des Jahres Jury Got It WRONG for my thoughts on some Spiel des Jahres winners and snubs. It has multiple scoring objectives and a modular board, so each game is unique. It's very satisfying to survey the powers available after set up and figure out how best to get points from the scoring objectives. I own the Big Box and highly recommend it. San Juan is the card game version of the brilliant Puerto Rico, though a little more accessible and forgiving than its older brother. I love games that use cards to build things, using the same cards as costs. San Juan provides great decisions on when to pick certain actions and how best to build the buildings you need for your strategy. I've blogged before about Treasure Hunter as an interesting drafting game. I'm still formulating strategies for this one. There are several rounds were I think I'm in good shape but then come away with no points!
100 Follower Update: 50/100. 50 happened much quicker than I expected, you are all wonderful people! Next milestone will be 100, but I'm not sure how to celebrate that one with you yet!
Sneak Peek: Next week we'll be guiding Luigi on his final final adventure in Mario Party 2, taking on the secret map, Bowser Land, which unlocked after completing all the maps. We'll attempt some interactive games Thursday and hopefully there will be a good turnout for JackBox on Friday. Weekend streams always a possibility!
More information on each game can be found on Board Game Geek