Welcome to The Game Shelf!

After getting into the board game hobby at the end of 2014, we've decided to share our thoughts on the games we're collecting on our shelves. The collection has certainly expanded over the last few years and we've been making up for lost time!

Sometimes our opinions differ, so Amy will be posting reviews every Tuesday and Fi will post on Thursdays. We hope you enjoy reading some of our opinions on board games - especially those for two players.

Get in touch by emailing thegameshelfblog@gmail.com

Wednesday, 28 October 2020

The Game Shelf Reviews:- Chronicles of Crime: 1400

Game: Chronicles of Crime: 1400

Publisher: Lucky Duck Games

Designer: David Cicurel, Wojciech Grajkowski

Year: 2020

Chronicles of Crime had a hugely innovative first release in 2018, following a successful Kickstarter campaign. It is one of just a handful of story-driven crime-solving board games out there and really stood out from the crowd with it's use of technology. It introduced VR to our board game table for the first time, with the ability to look around crime scenes using just your smart phone and some 3D glasses, but what felt most innovative was its use of QR code technology. 

Chronicles of Crime: 1400 is the first of three standalone sequels, known as the millennium series. In the 1400 edition you'll be transported to 15th century France where crime and backstabbing are rife. A further two games in the series, 1900 and 2400 will be released next year.

Thursday, 22 October 2020

Thoughts from the Yellow Meeple:- Troyes Dice

Game: Troyes Dice

Publisher: Pearl Games

Designer:   S├ębastien DujardinXavier GeorgesAlain Orban

Year: 2020


Troyes is one of those older euro games that we've still not got around to playing. I select it in every math trade I participate in, but so far, we've never matched and received it in trade. As a result, this review will be a straightforward review of its latest incarnation as a roll and write game. The momentum behind roll and write games does show a few signs of slowing recently, but new titles and implementations linked to a larger board game version are still being released and we still have a high level of excitement for all of them. Troyes Dice edges towards the heavier end of the roll and write spectrum and it's unlikely to become part of my Skype gaming rotation, but it could do if your Skype gaming is with a more gamerly crowd.

Troyes Dice is a game that takes place over 8 days, each with a morning phase and an evening phase. Over the course of the game you will draft 16 dice and use them to build a city on your player board in order to gain end game victory points. After a couple of days, invaders get wind of your city and twice a day they will try to invade and destroy different areas of your city. The greatest city with the greatest population and collection of buildings will win.

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Build a Wall, Let the Invaders Pay for it:- Troyes Dice

Game: Troyes Dice

Publisher: Pearl Games

Designer:   S├ębastien Dujardin, Xavier Georges, Alain Orban

Year: 2020 

Troyes Dice is a 1-10 player roll and write game in which you'll be using dice to upgrade your civilization for the good of all. Will you build walls to fortify the city, or focus on economic or religious development? Whatever you decide you need to be prepared for the invaders that will start to attack from day 3 onwards. While they won't burn down any already built buildings, they do spoil the land preventing future construction. Unless, of course, you have built strong enough walls to keep them at bay, but those walls aren't doing much else for your development...

Troyes Dice is a game of 8 days, each of which consists of 2 rounds, a day and a night round. Each round has a player rolling the four dice and placing them in numerical order along the coloured round tiles. Three of the dice are clear, representing that they are of the colour of the tile they are placed on, while one is black, marking that tile as blocked for this round. Blocked tiles flip over a the end of the round, usually causing them to change colour as the game progresses. Once the dice are rolled each player independently chooses one of the three available dice to use, with fees needing to be paid for the higher numbered dice. They then choose to either build one of the two buildings in the section of their player sheet that matches colour and number with the die they chose, or to use the die to generate resources.

Saturday, 17 October 2020

Thoughts from the Yellow Meeple:- Wingspan Digital

 Game: Wingspan

Publisher: Stonemaier Games

Designer: Elizabeth Hargrave

Digital Edition By: Monster Couch

Year: 2019


I could name only a few board game releases from the last 5 years that have really broken through to gain 'modern classic' status.  With a wife who works in a board game store, modern classic, for me, means a game that will be an evergreen, there is no board game store that shouldn't have this game in sock because people will be buying it for years and years to come. I'd put Azul in that category, along with Codenames and perhaps a few others, but one of the heavier games to make it is Wingspan.


Wingspan is not the most simple game, it has relatively advanced engine building mechanisms and yet its theme is so refreshing to modern board games that it really caught people's attention, and for most people it was a real winner. For me personally, I did not get into the game. I respect it immensely, but the engine building just never quite clicked for me. No matter what I did, the game always felt like a grind that only rarely resulted in a satisfying engine. However, the Wingspan Digital Edition looked so beautiful that I had to try it. It had an early preview release for a couple of days and I was hooked, and now it's available on Steam and soon to be on Nintendo Switch.