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Amparo Bertram

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06:10 am: 2014 Kickstarter Game Update: Week 5
Games I Viewed:
Lagoon: Land of Druids
Status: Funded

In this tile-laying game, players are druids calling upon the nature powers of the land where their druid tokens are sent. The artwork in this game is spectacular. Unfortunately, I wasn't impressed by the gameplay.


Oddball Aeronauts
Status: 58% funded

This is a 2-player card game similar to a strategic version of the classic game War that has the unique advantage that it requires no playing surface. I thought this might be good for, say, waiting in line at Comiket/Disney or playing while on a two-hour train ride to Mt. Fuji. Sadly, it would require the purchase of two decks to play more than two people, and I couldn't justify the expense for a game I probably wouldn't even play for two years. I hope the campaign succeeds, though, because it looks adorable.


The Convicted
Status: Funded

This is a cooperative game in which players are convicted criminals (possibly political criminals?--it says something about proving devotion to the king) who have been exiled and are trying to build a town for themselves in their harsh new land. While the game pieces look incredible, I just couldn't get behind the theme. For one thing, the players are criminals, which is rather off-putting. For another, they are colonizing an already inhabited land and killing off any natives ("hordes of barbarians" according to the project text) who attempt to get rid of the invaders, which--while certainly a believable scenario, based on history--isn't really the kind of goal that I can get behind. Maybe it's a less offensive topic in Poland, where the game was created?


Honorable mention:
Fief - France 1429
Status: Funded

In this game, players are nobles in 15th century France and are trying to establish the most powerful family. Ordinarily I wouldn't be interested at all in an area-control combat game, but this is being produced by the same person who put out Freedom: The Underground Railroad, so I took a look at it. The game itself is stunning, and it has reached so many stretch goals that a ton of extra stuff will come with the pledge. I'm kind of tempted by it, even though I doubt anyone would ever play it with me. I will probably end up resisting, but I thought I'd mention it in case it appeals to someone else out there.


Note: If anyone looked at Scoville but wasn't sure about backing, the base game was upgraded to include support for up to 6 players (so it's a better deal than it was two weeks ago), and a new stretch goal for pepper meeples was added.

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Comments

[User Picture]
From:sara_tanaquil
Date:February 8th, 2014 05:09 pm (UTC)
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I am kind of interested in Fief, as well, since the people who are doing the coinsets (Conquistador Games) cross-pimped it. I haven't had a chance to check out the mechanics of the gameplay, but the late medieval setting appeals to me. (And now I am wondering if I should add a medieval and/or renaissance set of coins to my coin pledge - they are still accepting additions, I think. Self, you have problems.)

I don't know if I'll end up pledging it (I did set a reminder flag on it), but I'd certainly be willing to try it out with you if you end up succumbing. Would it work as a two-player game?

I did end up pledging Japanese: the Game - I am weak! Maybe we can have some fun with it in August.

(I hope you don't get this comment twice. My computer is being cranky.)

Edited at 2014-02-08 05:09 pm (UTC)
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 8th, 2014 05:54 pm (UTC)
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I'd certainly be willing to try it out with you if you end up succumbing. Would it work as a two-player game?

From what I've read, the major draw of the game is the element of diplomacy/negotiation among the players, which wouldn't really work with two people. Comments are that it's best with 5-6. Someone said that a two-player variant wasn't completely ruled out, but it sounded like it would have to strip out a lot even to be possible.

I'll have to research more about it.

I did end up pledging Japanese: the Game - I am weak! Maybe we can have some fun with it in August.


megory pledged for that one too. I'm sure she'd enjoy playing as well.
[User Picture]
From:sara_tanaquil
Date:February 8th, 2014 05:59 pm (UTC)
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Hm, diplomacy/negotiation is certainly not my favorite game tactic (well, unless it's more coop than backstabby), but I'll have to watch the gameplay video to learn more about it. I look forward to hearing what you decide.

Yay, I'm glad to hear megory pledged for Japanese! I'll definitely bring my copy to GenCon.
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 8th, 2014 08:50 pm (UTC)
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Hm, diplomacy/negotiation is certainly not my favorite game tactic (well, unless it's more coop than backstabby), but I'll have to watch the gameplay video to learn more about it.

From the comments I've been reading, "backstabbing" is one of the celebrated elements of the game.

They're trying to come up with a 2-player variant, but it seems to involve each player controlling two families in a team play fashion, which doesn't exactly sound appealing.

I think I'm going to pass on this one.
[User Picture]
From:sara_tanaquil
Date:February 8th, 2014 10:13 pm (UTC)
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Sounds like a good call. Ah well, I should be saving money anyway.
[User Picture]
From:mangaroo
Date:February 9th, 2014 06:52 am (UTC)
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I've remindered Lagoon, but won't pledge until I get a chance to watch the review video on the KS. Is that video how you evaluated the gameplay, or is there another gameplay runthrough out there?

Other than the art, the appeal for me is that they've met a stretch goal for a solo variant (although no details have been revealed). I'm kind of hoping that the solo variant's objective will be somehow uniting the powers, since the backstory of energy shattered and each faction seeking dominance just makes me Avatar-sad. No, guys, we gotta put everything back together!
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 9th, 2014 01:20 pm (UTC)
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Is that video how you evaluated the gameplay, or is there another gameplay runthrough out there?

I watched the beginning of the video, but I made up my mind before getting through the whole thing. I had wanted to like the game, too, because of the bunny tokens.

I'm kind of hoping that the solo variant's objective will be somehow uniting the powers, since the backstory of energy shattered and each faction seeking dominance just makes me Avatar-sad. No, guys, we gotta put everything back together!

Yeah, it's the combative element of the game that just ruined it for me, because it totally doesn't work with the theme. When the video intro mentioned that the druids don't just use the powers of nature, they also destroy nature, it was a complete turn off. I assume this is to give players the ability to remove hexes from the board, but it just makes the whole thing not worth playing to me. I don't want to see druids destroying nature.

Added to that, the mechanic of moving the druid tokens about the board and using the special powers on the hexes looked almost exactly like Shadows over the Empire, which I already own. I don't need another game that does the same thing.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:February 10th, 2014 01:16 pm (UTC)
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I've also been looking at Oddball Aeronauts and Fief and trying to talk myself out of them. If I got Fief, I would want to get the buildings added on, which would make it like $90 for a game I probably wouldn't play that often, so that's a pass for financial reasons, even though all the stretch goals make it tempting. My problems with Oddball Aeronauts are like yours: I don't play two player games that often (but the four player variant would be kinda expensive), and the big attraction for this is its ability to be played anywhere...which is also something I don't need very often. I would be more tempted if I thought it would be ready before GenCon.
[User Picture]
From:spacealien_vamp
Date:February 11th, 2014 12:32 am (UTC)
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I would be more tempted if I thought it would be ready before GenCon.

Agreed. If I thought we could play it while waiting in lines or something at the convention, it would probably be worth ordering. But with delivery set for August, odds are not good that it would arrive in time.

If it helps with financial planning, I know of a TON of games that are planned for launch in March. Examples: New Dawn, Arctic Scavengers expansion, Assault on Doomrock (will be Indiegogo rather than KS), and the Allegiance reboot. I know I'll be spending gobs of money then, so I'm holding back right now.
[User Picture]
From:wednesday_10_00
Date:February 11th, 2014 03:47 pm (UTC)
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I know I'll be spending gobs of money then, so I'm holding back right now.

That seems wise. I'm definitely trying to cut back on spending money on too many games anyway, because I feel like I'm not getting enough time to spend with favorites.

(Says the girl going to GenCon, haha.)
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