Skip navigation

Friends of mine were getting married, and even though they had a small ceremony, we wanted to get them something. They have a young daughter, so we thought we’d get them a family game. We considered Best Treehouse Ever, but it was out of stock on Amazon. I did some searching and stumbled upon the Family Pastimes games. They’re cooperative games with rules for 5-7 years old, 7-12 years old, and 12+. We really like cooperative games, but there aren’t many that are for younger age groups. I ordered one game for them, and put Ogres and Elves on my wishlist. Then Christmas came around, and Ogres and Elves was one of my gifts. I had completely forgotten about it!

First of all, it’s not exactly quality craftsmanship. The board doesn’t lay quite flat and the pieces are cheap cardboard. If that’s the sort of thing that’s going to bother you, just skip this one. I wasn’t thrilled when I was punching out the tokens (several stuck), but I still wanted to play the game.

Read More »

We have a problem. We own a lot of games (some might say too many), and despite having a limited amount of room, we keep buying more games! We’ve reorganized several times because you can only stack games so high before it becomes a serious hazard. The more classic games (like Sorry!) that we’re more likely to play when our son gets older have been put into totes in the garage, and games we rarely play are tucked out of sight in the hard-to-get-to cabinet.

It wasn’t enough.

Then we found Bit Boxes on Kickstarter, and it looked like the perfect solution.

As most game enthusiasts know, a board game box is designed to accommodate the size of the board. This means there’s often a lot of wasted space in the box. In fact very few games utilize all of the box space. This means games often take up a lot of space on our shelves, cabinets, and closets. Too much space, really. Bit Boxes help solve that problem.

Read More »

Our board game collection takes up a serious amount of space. Most game boxes have an excessive amount of empty space inside (aka “slack fill”). Regardless of the reason (plastic/cardboard trays are the usual culprit), the wasted space makes the boxes bigger. It is also rare that the publisher leaves room for expansions, which means that you have your original game box, and each expansion. For our 7 wonders collection, this was a large stack of boxes. It also meant that when we wanted to play 7 Wonders, we had to get all the boxes, open each up and collect the various cards and extra bits from each one, creating a lengthy setup (and tear down) process.

Enter the The Broken Token Organizer for 7 Wonders (aka the Wondrous Organizer).

Read More »

This is the final entry in a seven part series on superhero games. This entry is about X-Men Under Siege.

This is a board game from the 90s, so it has that “classic” feel to it. There are 18 figurines of the different characters to choose from, and each character also has a small board listing Fighting Skill, Durability, and Intelligence and special abilities. The Fighting Skill number tells you how many dice you get to roll in a fight, Durability is how many dice you can roll to remove Hits from your character, and Intelligence determines how many cards you can have (total Intelligence of your 2 smartest characters). You begin the game with 2 characters with the chance of getting a third.

The board consists of 6 levels of the Mansion, and each level has a certain number of rooms to explore. Along one side of the board is a number line which is used for battles. You play cards to move your characters to different levels and rooms to explore. Each room has a small square which you flip over during exploration. If the square is blank, nothing happens (you keep the square since it’s worth points later). If the square says “X-Men” you get an additional character (if you don’t yet have 3). If the square says “Evil Mutant” you flip over an Evil Mutant (EM) card. You place the small square at the bottom of the number line and the level marker to the number indicated on the EM card. Some of the numbers have a red blood mark on them. If you lower the EM’s HP to or past that number, you receive a token (worth points later). When you defeat the EM, you keep the EM card (worth points later). If you manage to clear enough rooms (the level indicates how many), you have cleared that level and get the level marker (worth points later) along with any remaining room tokens. Each room square, blood token, EM card, and level marker is worth 1 point at the end of the game, and the player with the most points wins.

Read More »

This is the play-by-play version of the previously posted story mode.
The difficulty to acquire items and weapons is increased by 2

  • Seoni – Rin figurine
  • Seelah – Saber figurine

Locations:

  • Thassilonian Dungeon – Seoni start
  • Throne Room
  • Warrens
  • Goblin Fortress – Seelah start

Seelah opening hand:

  1. Greatsword
  2. Magic Half-Plate (favored card type)
  3. Longsword +1
  4. Blessing of the Gods

Seoni starting hand:

  1. Blessing of the Gods
  2. Scorching Ray (favored card type)
  3. Blessing of Pharasma x2
  4. Blessing of Lamashtu
  5. Sage

Seelah 1st turn

Encountering Rat Swarm

Encountered Rat Swarm – Combat 8

If Rat Swarm is not defeated by at least 4, it is shuffled back into location deck.

Greatsword – d8 (+4) and 2d6, used special to discard top card for a d6 (Standard Bearer), rolled 9 (two 1s, one 2, one 5), total 13, Rat Swarm defeated


Seoni 1st turn

Encountered Potion of Glibness – Intelligence 4

Increased to 6 because of Thistletop Delve

d8, rolled 1

Read More »

Though they had defeated Gogmurt, the threat had not yet died. They’d sent their allies off to try to find more information, but it seemed Nualia, who was supposed to be dead, was the true source of trouble in Thistletop and Sandpoint. They decided to search the goblin fortress again as well as the Thassilonian dungeon, the warrens, and of course the throne room of the Thistletop fortress.

Seoni and Seelah decided a fresh set of eyes in the goblin fortress would be better, so Seelah headed off in that direction. Seoni, with the Sage by her side, set off for the Thassilonian dungeon.


Seelah was a bit surprised her greatsword had been so effective against the rat swarm she’d encountered upon entering the goblin fortress. She finished cleaning her sword and moved farther in. It wasn’t long before she found a man who looked to be a mercenary.

“Who are you?” she asked.

“Orik Vancaskerkin.”

The name sounded vaguely familiar. “What are you doing here?”

“Being a distraction.”

Seelah raised her sword. “Then you’re working with Nualia.”

That brought an end to the conversation, and they attacked. Seelah quickly dispatched him and turned to leave. If he was a distraction, then Nualia wasn’t in the goblin fortress.

“Wait!”

Read More »

This is the sixth in a seven part series on superhero games. In this entry I’ll discuss Sentinels of the Multiverse plus expansions.

Sentinels is another favorite of ours, and once again we have a lot of expansions:

  1. Rook City
  2. Infernal Relics
  3. Shattered Timelines
  4. Wrath of the Cosmos
  5. Vengeance
  6. Villains of the Multiverse

We also have several mini-expansions: Celestial Tribunal, Final Wasteland, Omnitron IV, Silver Gulch, Guise, Scholar, Unity, Ambuscade, Checkpoint, Miss Information, and Wager Master.

In this card game you choose a Hero and you’ll play with that deck throughout the game. We usually play a two player game, so we each choose two decks. You also choose a Villain Deck and Environment Deck. The Villain goes first, then the Heroes, and finally the Environment. As you turn over or play cards, you follow the instructions on the card.
Read More »

This is the fifth in a seven part series on superhero games. In this entry, I’ll discuss Legendary plus a bunch of its expansions.

Legendary is our favorite deck building game, which explains why we have so many expansions:

  1. Captain America 75th Anniversary
  2. Dark City
  3. Fantastic Four
  4. Guardians of the Galaxy
  5. Paint the Town Red
  6. Secret Wars 1

Professor and I play this game quite a bit, so I’ll just explain the 2 player set up. You choose 5 Heroes (each has a 14 card deck) and shuffle them together to create the 70 card Hero Deck. Each Hero has at least one icon on the card indicating the Hero Type. This is important to look at when you’re choosing your Heroes because if Iron Man is the only Tech Type Hero you have, it’s going to be difficult to use some of his special abilities. Also, some Villains and Masterminds attack you unless you have a certain class of Hero or a Hero on a certain team (like Avengers).

You choose your Mastermind and Scheme, which will tell you what has to be in your Villain Deck (Villain Groups, Henchmen Groups, Bystanders, Scheme Twists, and Master Strikes). The Mastermind plus its 4 Mastermind Tactic cards and the Scheme card go in their indicated locations on the board. The rest of the “villain” cards are shuffled together to create the Villain Deck. There’s also places on the board for the rest of the Bystanders, Wounds (30 in the base), and SHIELD Officer Maria Hill (30). Each player gets a 12 card starting deck (8 SHIELD Agents and 4 SHIELD Troopers).

Read More »

This is the fourth in a seven part series on superhero games. This time it’s about Heroes of Metro City and the expansion Sidekicks and Storylines.

We’ve written about this game in a previous post.

This is another deck building game, but it isn’t tied to an existing superhero universe (like DC or Marvel). You’re “creating” your superhero. To start, you get to name your hero. Each player’s board has a place to write this in using a dry erase marker. Sometimes Energy Cards give an extra boost to characters with certain elements to their names (gender, animal, etc.), so you want to pick those before deciding on a name.

Each player is allotted a certain number of points to spend on cards at the beginning of the game to start building a deck. The fewer the points, the harder the game is going to be, but we’ll get to that. Some cards give you specific powers, some energy, and some give your character a “story” (hence the expansion name).

The goal is to defeat the Archenemy, but there are also Minions and Villains to deal with. Each of these has an attack that can trigger when you roll the dice. If the dice are always trying to kill you, this will be a rough game. If you’re really lucky at rolling dice, you just might save Metro City.

The premise of the game sounds awesome. I get to create my own superhero and fight bad guys.

The execution…
Read More »

This is the third in a seven part series on superhero games. Today’s entry is on Dice Masters.

To start with, we have 5 starter packs:

  1. Uncanny X-Men
  2. Avengers vs X-Men
  3. Justice League
  4. The Amazing Spider-Man
  5. Age of Ultron

And we’ve bought a lot of booster packs which give you more Character cards and dice.

Each starter set is basically the same. You get three different types of dice: Basic Action, Character, and Sidekick. You also get three different types of cards: Character, Basic Action, and Color Reminder. Finally, you get two dice bags which are okay.

You decide which three Basic Action cards you want to play with (they give you extra abilities during the game), then assign those card to three different colors (like Blue, Pink, and Green). You then place three dice of the same color on each of the cards. During the game you can buy these colored dice which then give you the chance to use the ability on the Basic Action card.

Each player gets 8 white Sidekick dice which go into your dice bag.

Read More »