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

Thursday, 26 August 2021

The Game with your name on it:- Bullet

Game: Bullet♥︎

Publisher: Level 99 Gams

Designer: Joshua Van Laningham

Year: 2021
 

Bullet is a 1-4 player puzzle game in which players take the role of anime heroines defending the earth against a never ending rain of destruction. Until they are the last heroine left, at which point the rain of destruction mysteriously ends in completely normal and not at all suspicious way. If you are playing solo then you can play the boss battle mode against mega-strength versions of the other heroines, or simply play normally attempting to get a high score.

A game of Bullet takes place over several rounds. In each round players will add a number of bullet tokens into their personal bag, reset their energy to full and draw three pattern cards. Then the three minute timer begins. During the three minutes you'll be drawing tokens from the bag, a token will go into the column equal to its colour and then drop down a number of spaces equal to it's number, skipping any spaces that already contain a bullet token. Should a token ever fall to the bottom of your track then it will damage you, take enough damage and you are out of the game.

Thursday, 19 August 2021

Thoughts from the Yellow Meeple:- Bullet♥︎

Game: Bullet♥︎

Publisher: Level 99 Gams

Designer: Joshua Van Laningham

Year: 2021
 
 



Bullet♥︎ is a real-time game that contains a number of game modes, but with the main one being a competitive game where your success becomes your opponent's problem!

Each player plays as a heroine and it's great to see a board game cast full of strong women. Not only that, but all of the heroines are well-dressed too; especially rare in a game with a manga-like style that all too often means that the female characters are far from appropriately dressed.

Wednesday, 18 August 2021

The Game Shelf Reviews:- Dunaia

Game: Dunaïa

Publisher: Blam!

Designer:  Thomas Dupont

Year: 2021

 
 
 
Dunaïa is a 2-4 player game with a somewhat generic fantasy theme, in which each player controls six dunaias who are individually awakened in each turn to activate the areas around them. The theme is very weak, but gives rise to very colourful artwork of lush green landscapes and futuristic looking buildings hidden mamong the hills. The cover artwork, on the other hand looks quite dated to my eye, but is it worth getting past that to discover the tile-laying and resouce management game within?

Thursday, 5 August 2021

Thoughts from The Yellow Meeple:- The Initiative

Game: The Initiative

Publisher: Unexpected Games

Designer: Corey Konieczka

Year: 2021

The Initiative is an immediately intriguing game - the cover is wonderful and for a brand new publisher, there was a lot of buzz for this title when it released earlier in the year. Corey Konieczka is a very well known game designer, involved in many of Fantasy Flights Games' greatest hits. Unexpected games is his own publishing brand, but you can see the links back to fantasy flight, even down to the basic insert and the proof of purchase token in the punchboard!
 
The Initiative is a cooperative game for 1-4 players which uses a comic book to tell the story of a group of teenagers who like to play a board game (yes it's very meta!). The game is a campaign, with sequential missions that take you through the story, adding new game mechanisms and increasing the difficulty of the codes you solve. We're about half way through the campaign at the time of writing our reviews.

Tuesday, 3 August 2021

Roll For:- The Initiative

Game: The Initiative

Publisher: Unexpected Games

Designer: Corey Konieczka

Year: 2021
 
The Initiative is a 1-4 player cooperative game which has you wandering through maps collecting clues in order to solve the mission's puzzle. The missions themselves are tied together into a campaign story told via an interactive comic book. Naturally then there are spoilers as you go through the story, so I won't be talking explicitly about anything story or mechanically past the intro of the first mission. Throughout the game you'll also be finding secret cards, these might unlock new rules, tell more story, or introduce a new puzzle for you to complete between missions.

Once you have read the intro for your mission you set up the mission by placing the player board in the center of the table and adding the shuffled clue tokens to the spots marked on the mission card. You then place the mission card into the decoder's slot. The decoder has a series of flippable panels which should all start down, hiding the solutions. Above many of the panels will be one of the symbols from the clue tokens, when you collect one of these tokens you can flip the panel, giving you a part of your solution. Eventually, once you have flipped enough of the panels, the answer for the round may become clear to you. As a group you can, at any time, agree on what you think the answer is. If you do so you can reveal the answer, if you were correct then you win, otherwise you will lose.
 

Sunday, 1 August 2021

The Game Shelf Reviews:- Sky Towers

Game: Sky Towers

Publisher: EX1ST GAMES

Designer:  Charles Ward

Year: 2019
 
 
 
Sky Towers is a Forever Free Print and Play Game from Charles Ward of EX1ST GAMES. Whilst there are plans to publish a physical copy of the game, it will always be available for free here: https://www.ex1st.com/games/skytowers/. It recently won best 2-player game in the 2021 54 Card Game Design Contest
 
Sky Towers is a tactical, set collection card game from 1-4 players . It features charming artwork and clever card abilities and given it's two player credentials, it's a game we were keen to try out.