In last weeks first impressions I moaned about the fact that we’re not playing any new 2016 releases. So to help put that right I went on a shopping spree! This week loads of new games have arrived, including The Networks, Quadropolis, Animals on Board and Mystic Vale. We’ll make sure to play them all a few times before putting out reviews, but expect to see some first impressions in the coming weeks. We’ve also added a few older titles to the collection too, and have just managed to squeeze everything on the shelves! We’ve only played a couple of new games played so far though...
Here are Yellow Meeple’s first impressions;
· Baseball Highlights 2045 is a game I’ve been thinking about for a while – a 2-player deckbuilder sounds great for us, but the baseball theme is definitely not up our alley. I know sometimes theme doesn’t matter, but recent bad experience with 1st and Goal kind of put me off buying this one. The opportunity came up at Croydon board gaming group to try this one so I jumped at the chance. Baseball Highlights 2045 is a deck-builder, but I particularly enjoyed how interactive it felt compared to many others, even more so than Star Realms. Part of the game is putting together a deck that works with a few combos but also combats your opponent’s deck, but the way you use your deck is quite unique to me. You have a hand of cards and you take turns to pick a hitter, then your opponent chooses a card to try and pitch well to the hitter and prevent them getting their runs or at least slow them down. That card then becomes your next hitter and the game continues with a back and forth. I think there is something really good in this game, but unfortunately my first experience was with a very serious gamer, keen to give me a back-story to every rule and make the game last 2 hours. I imagine this could be a good 45 minute game and wouldn’t pass up the opportunity to play again with Amy – a very interesting take on deck-building.
· Animals on Board is really on my radar due to podcasts. Unfortunately, as much as Stronghold Games have been shouting about it, here in the UK I’ve actually picked up the Pegasus Spiele edition. The game has a pretty tenuous theme where your filling an Ark but some guy called Noah has banned you from having animals in pairs and so you’re trying to either stick to one animal of any species or big groups on certain species. Mechanically the game is a simple I split, you choose system. In the centre of the table is one big group of animals and on your turn you can split one group and gain food or you can take a whole group by spending enough food – 1 per animal. The game is super simple, but surprisingly the mechanic really does make you think hard about the best way to get what you want – with 2-players it’s quite easy because you can kind of predict at what point you want to take rather than split, but I imagine this gets harder and more chaotic with more players. As a lightweight filler I’m pretty happy with Animals on Board – it’s simple and easy which is sometimes all I want.
First impressions might slow down a little in the next couple of weeks. We’ve made a target list of the games we’d like be able to review in the upcoming weeks, which means we need to play a few of them a couple more times, including Marvel Legendary, Steampunk Rally, Trambahn, so they need to take priority.