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 27 February 2019

The Yellow Meeple's First Impressions:- 15th - 24th February 2019

For my 30th birthday, Amy took me on a tour of the board game cafes around London. We visited Warboar, D20, Proceed Clockwise, The Library Pot and Cakes and Ladders, hitting my personal target of playing 30 unique games,! Almost all of the games were new to us, so I've chosen just a few of our favourites to feature here, as well as cheating and including some thoughts on the campaign of Aeon's End Legacy that we're currently playing.

So here the Yellow Meeple's first impressions!

  • Railroad Ink: Deep Blue Edition is another in a long line of roll and write games. Just when I think I'm burnt out on this niche in gaming, I get a craving to play more, and we tried three different ones over the course of this weekend alone! Railroad Ink is absolutely one of the best. On each turn, you roll four collective dice. The faces have combination of road and rail junctions and all players must draw all four on their dry erase board. The goal is to connect together the stations on the perimeter and the best way to do this is in one continuous network. The game is so simple and yet so satisfying as you plan ahead and draw out your network, willing the dice to roll exactly what you need. The few extra get-outs using crossroads and details with the expansion dice, make the game so interesting and re-playable and I just can't wait to play this one a lot by ourselves, but also introduce it to lots of new players.
  • Fireball Island: The Curse of Vul-Kar was a hugely successful Kickstarter for a very nostalgic game. However, since we didn't grow up with the game, the nostalgia value isn't there for us, but the toy factor is huge and I couldn't stay away from this giant plastic island with marble a spitting monster any longer. I went into expecting a game that would just be silly fun, but found that there were actually some tactical elements. Playing cards from your hand at opportune moments to collect the right treasure or take photos, choosing to prioritise one character over another in a two-player game and choosing your moment to flick a marble at someone when it's a sure-fire hit, were all a little bit extra than I expected. It's still a light and silly game, but if I had kids, I'd be very happy to play this as a gamer parent. I'd also happily play it in a relaxed setting with friends, but that means it's not one we need to own, as it wouldn't see that much play in our collection.

  • Thunderbirds is a cooperative game from Matt Leacock, designer of Pandemic. It's a game we've been meaning to play for a while, not because the theme is one that resonates with us (although it does make for some cool vehicle miniatures) but simply because there's no reason not to play a cooperative game from Matt Leacock. Thunderbirds is certainly not a Pandemic clone, it's pretty much a pick-up and deliver co-op game, which couldn't really be more in our wheelhouse. By manipulating who is riding in each vehicle or even what they're carrying you are trying to complete missions before one becomes critical or the Hood is allowed to trigger a scheme. It's a game full of planning and communication and it's a fantastic puzzle to try and solve. I am so glad we tried this game and had the opportunity to immediately buy it and most of its expansions for a very good price!
  • Aeon's End Legacy was brought to us by a friend and we're playing though it at a very fast pace. We've played 6 games over two sessions and so far we've not had to replay following a loss. That's not to say that Aeon's End Legacy is an easy game, it's actually incredibly tense and every game is nail-biting. After not being particularly enthralled by the original game, I'm really excited by this legacy game. Every game you encounter a different enemy and the way in which they attack with their minions is very different and unique. Not only this, but you're building up your characters to be very different throughout the game so that they become stronger and more specialised and I am very much enjoying my role as 'the tank'! If I had purchased the game I might feel disappointed at the lack of content with only two more scenarios to play, but for fans of the game, much of the content can be reused as an expansion to the original game, which gives it much more life than a disposable legacy game.

We're currently preparing for Airecon, a UK convention that is coming up in less than two weeks time. We're hoping to play some new games including Tiny Towns from AEG and Kingdom Rush from Lucky Duck Games. We're also planning to take some games off our shelf of shame and hopefully find some willing teachers or at least other new players. I hope it will be a great 3 days of gaming and will have a convention report for you when we return!

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