Danielle Reynolds - @TokenGaymer
May 2020 Game Play Journal
Similar to the past few months I was trapped inside for most of May with an exception of going to Arizona to visit my family for a few days. Many of the games I played this month currently have reviews so links to them are posted along with my thoughts on this particular game play. I look forward to continuing game nights in the future and hopefully trying a few new games in June. Until then here is my list of published games I’ve played in the month of May.
May 1, 2020
Azul: Stained Glass of Sintra - 2-Player
I reviewed Azul Stained Glass in February's Game Play Journal. I think I like this game more as a smaller player count since turns can take a while if people have analysis paralysis. I have only played the first two Azul games but Jessa and I agree the second one is better than the first in our opinions.
May 3, 2020
This was the first time I had played Imhotep Duel. The Egyptian theme drew me in immediately. Jessa and I played as a royal couple competing to place our meeples to unload the most valuable tiles from the six boats. Then we added these tiles to build our own four monuments in order to gain as many fame points as possible to win. For this game, I tried playing the short game to see how it played out and man was it a bad call. Don’t ignore the two pyramid points until the end. Those points added up quickly. Also, make sure all of your monuments are turned to the correct sides. Somehow I accidentally had one of my monuments on the B side so I thought it was worth more points than it actually was. In set-up make sure all the player’s monuments are on the same side! Overall, I think this is a nice 2-player game that could be used to introduce less experienced players into some heavier mechanics.
May 8, 2020
In Horrified you are up against the Universal movie monsters. For this game Jessa and I went up against Dracula and the Wolfman. Last time we played we played against the Mummy and the Creature from the Black Lagoon which had almost a mini-game on their boards to defeat them which I was a huge fan of. Dracula and the Wolfman were more straightforward to defeat. To defeat Dracula you just have to destroy his coffins scattered around the board. To defeat the Wolfman you have to collect ingredients to make a cure at the Laboratory location. I’d suggest this monster combo for a beginner game. We seemed to have very few close calls in defeating the monsters and only had the fear track move up once because Dracula found a villager before I could save them. Dracula's power is turning into a bat and jumping a few spaces if frenzied so he can be more scary then the Wolfman. Horrified is easy to learn thanks to a well written rulebook, easy to set up and the story really does make it fun. I don’t think I’d want to play this game with more then three players though. We played off our player’s special abilities which made Jessa the collector while I saved villagers and worked as monster bait. In our next play I hope to go up against Frainkeinstien’s Monster and Bride as well as the Invisible Man before jumping into having 3 monsters.
I reviewed Crypt in February's Game Play Journal. And I will say the game rules were confusing for 2-players. A lot of the parts of the game I enjoyed in the 3-player game didn’t make sense for 2-players. I’m not sure if that was from misunderstanding the rulebook or what. I’m going to save this game for a higher player count next time.
May 20, 2020
Abandon All Artichokes - 3-Player
I reviewed Abandon all Artichokes in April’s Game Play Journal. I did like playing with more than 2-players but similar to last time I found that we were all a turn away from winning. That is somewhat frustrating to all of the players. I feel like this game also might be meant for younger ages which fits in line with a GameWright game line but means we won’t be playing it as much.
I reviewed Afternova in February's Game Play Journal. The only difference was a lower player count which didn’t majorly affect the fun of the bartering thankfully. There were occasional times though that all three of us didn’t have the symbols to collect the gems from a planet. My sister and her boyfriend thoroughly enjoyed the easy gameplay, laughs and comical creature names/illustrations. I really think this is my favorite Road to Infamy game.
May 21, 2020
Too Many Poops is a set collection game about balancing the numbers of cats you’re adopting with the number of poops they are creating in your litter box. This game was funded on Kickstarter because who doesn’t like cats? It’s a funny take on the overly used cat theme. I have played this game with many player counts and thought since it was a simple game it would work well for my family. I quickly realized that they did not have the attention span for the game. Players took too long deciding their moves so there was a lot of waiting time. I enjoyed the game much more at a lower player count. It’s too simple a game to take that long. Overall, I enjoy the game and it remains my little cousin Joey’s favorite game.
May 24, 2020
This was a family favorite that has been played for years on holidays and during family gatherings. It’s also probably one of my favorite party games. On my last night in Arizona we decided to play. The questions still amuse me and the answers people respond with. In the game you are asked a question like, “If you met an alien what celebrity would you want it to resemble?” Then everyone but the judge would write their answers. Finally, the judge will try and guess who wrote what to score additional points or movements. I’m still not a fan of moving on the board with a dice since there’s no skill in that. The cards are by far my favorite part of the game and it was really nice to laugh with my family again. If you’re like me where the board bothers you just play with the cards and reward yourself with points on your paper.
May 28, 2020
FRIENDS: The One With The Ball Game - 2-Player
Jessa and I were in a Target when she saw this game and decided she needed it. It’s probably her very first board game impulse buy. We are both fans of the show FRIENDS and this game was a smart idea. All the cards have rules you need to follow while throwing the ball which is inspired by different FRIENDS episodes. The game was fun but ended too quickly since it was only five rounds of throwing the ball back and forth three times. It was clearly made for a larger player count and they just slapped the 2-8 player on it so people would buy it. Honestly, it’s not worth the $20ish dollars. You could easily make up these rules and throw a ball without spending the money. I may change my mind when I play it with more players but I mostly think it was a IP (Intellectual Property) game designed to be a mass market impulse buy. And man did they succeed at that!
Since June is filled with Origins Online prep I expect a shorter list of played games but thanks to my friend Steven I have a few escape room Unlock games that I want to hopefully play even if it's a single player game this month! So look out for that and some other games!