Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Spiel 2012 - Games I looked at

Here's my game by game report on Spiel 2012. So I had these lists with games I thought might be interesting. Those that followed my tweets will know that there were a few hickups, but I did get a look at most of the games.

Let's start out with the games I only had time to look at. Tomorrow we'll look at games I played but that were not on my list and the games that didn't make it to the show, or I couldn't find otherwise. And after that we look at the games I played that were on my list and a few games that I decided not to spend precious time on for whatever reason.

Games I only had time to look at

Mister Ecklund explaining the rules to Pax Porfiriana
Pax Porfiriana
I had been afraid that this would be a monster game, but it seems manageable. Lots of historical feel to it. Rob bought this one

Existenz new basic game contents
Existenz has been changed from a ccg to a lcg plus boardgame, now in one basic game.

 Exodus: this is a tech tree, plus home planet
Game by the makers of Warriors & Traders, marketed as Twilight Imperium Light 

Not as much as Clash of Cultures, but still enough bits in Robinson Crusoe
Robinson Crusoe: Adventure on the Cursed Island 
I'm a bit worn out with coops, although this one might be a better one in the genre. 

Loads of stuff in Clash of Cultures
Clash of Cultures
This has a bit of a buzz and it looks pretty good, but I didn't get a chance to try. Z-Man has moved into a bigger hall by the way, so they seem to have made it to the mainstream (or think they have a good chance getting there)

Winter Tales
This game looks beautiful, but I couldn´t figure out what the storytelling element would be, or how it would affect the game. Didn´t get a chance to play, so must wait

Oh no... INVASION!!!
So deterministic that I couldn't see what meaningful choices players have. Mediocre artwork, but it fits the theme

A Hooyah mission card and rulebook
Hooyah: Navy Seals Card Game
Looked very euro. Not the feel of a special operation

The countdown clock is at the top of the table

Countdown: Special Ops
Only a prototype version was played at the booth and it looked very euro. Not the feel of a special operation

The picture doesn't do justice to the artwork
Mythic Battles
Looked great, but it really is a two player game and as such I didn't think it would get much play

Nice arabic artwork
Worker placement in the medieval Middle East. Gain resources to trade to gain the Sultan's favour

Had a quick look, but decided that tactical combat board wargaming wasn't going to played. 

Oh man... those sculpts
Looked the beautiful components, browsed the rulebook but couldn't get a spot to try and moved on. I'll probably buy this at some point.

Very quick look in passing. Looked a lot like Ruthenia (sse blow), but my friends told me it had a quirky combat mechanism and I sped on.

Vlad, Prince of Wallachia: abstract board, but AT mindset. Conquer the castle or kill your opponents

I Am Vlad: Prince Of Wallachia
I guess I'm mostly put off by the chess like board and a fear that this game could be long. 

Iron Sky: The Board Game
I played the demo last year at Essen and this wasn't very convincing so I threw a quick glance in passing but didn't try. 

Looks great, but not enough game in there to justify €30
1984: Animal Farm
The theme is brilliant of course, and the artwork does a good job of reinforcing it but there isn't much in mechanics and a lot of negotiation in the game

Even the box breathes theme

I'm so happy with the theme that I needed little effort to be converted. The game artwork is spot-on and there's a lot of love in the production, including an introduction to shopping in Communist Poland. Bought

The monsters

At the reasonable price bought untried, but it looks like it will do nicely. Artwork is very good and Polish mythology is an added boon. Bought

Board for the Stonehenge scenario

Lupin the Third: The Expansion #1
Bought it straight away. Two new scenario boards plus equipment and lots of new character cards.

Samurai Sword
Didn't look very good or feel very different from Bang! How often did I play Bang!? Maybe start with that first then.

Divided Republic
Went to the booth twice, but found the game abandoned on both occassions. Found out the price and then decided not to bother. Looks sort of ok though 

Yup, Hajo Peters is making only a hundred

Signum Mortis. Gangs of Rome
This is me taking a leap into the dark as I bought half a game on my memory of how it was explained last year. But to head a gang during Sulla´s proscriptions and try to rob and murder as many senators as possible before the situation settles is just hugely attractive. Counters and rules to follow by February.

Nice components, including a block of match reports

Helvetia Cup
A pretty fantasy football game probably alike Bloodbowl. Nice minis but I have no clue on the rules.

The Democracy demo
Democracy: Majority Rules
This looks like a very interesting model of modern politics including bureaucrats, voters and the justice system among others influencing the lawmakers. Every player also has a political philosophy: change, conservatism, regulation or liberty and centrist. It is running on Kickstarter until November 6th. Seemed like a complex game and it might try to do too much at the expense of a game. So check the rules before you commit!

Examples of event cards

I had a pretty thorough explanation of this game which made me feel bad for not buying it, also because I think it is a decent game with a few interesting tweaks (like debt cards becoming dead weight in your hand). The components were pretty good too. It is a conquest game with castles, priests, spies, knights and nobles as units. The rules are pretty simple but the event cards add the spice.

Great poses

Freebooters Fate Cultist faction miniatures
I passed by the Freebooters Miniatures stand to say hello on behalf of the Frontline Gamer, and they gladly showed me their new miniatures.

Good sculpts, but see above

The Wolsung steam punk miniature skirmish game
I liked the Wolsung setting straight when I encountered the Wolsung boardgame, itself totally missing the point because the machines you build don´t get to fight. So to hear there´s a miniature game made me jump an inch. They are pretty good sculpts, but not cheap.The artwork awesome as always.

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