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For all thats great in boardgames

Tag: Hasbro

16/100 Games in 100 Days: Risk Legacy

Been a bit lax last week with a bit of work piling up but not this weekend.
Smashed out games of
7 Wonders(Base no expansions)
King of Tokyo (Fun with monsters)
Game of Thrones 2nd ed (The only game to play)

And Risk Legacy! So hyped for it. Grabbed 4 other usual suspects and threw the game down.
Never felt tingles opening a game before. Once you open that seal it was on.

Winning is the best feeling ever. Being able to scar the board with your name and to create a city founded on your skill alone is an amazing feeling.

The games go really fast at the start but I think it’s because everybody starts with 1 extra VP. It really acts sort of diplomacy light as you have to convince everyone not to hit you: while you hit them.
But wow. Just innovation max. This has really rejuvenated what I believed about the board games industry that there is still innovation there. Unlike the staid video game industry: board games are really pushing the high frontiers.

Expect mini Legacy updates after different games as the days go by as I try to fit the games in!

Till Tomorrow!

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Monopoly Madness!

Monopoly Madness

If you ever want to get a gamer into a discussion, mention Monopoly, that apogee of boardgame popularity that, like it or not, is the game that comes to the average punter’s mind when you mention ‘boardgames’. There’s a lot more to the world of boardgaming, but Monopoly is probably the most popular boardgame in the world, and definitely the game that has been released in more versions than any other, which—let’s face it—can sometimes seem a little strange considering that it’s a game about buying and selling on the property market.

Why is it so popular? Probably because it has become such a core part of our popular culture, and that everyone has cherished memories of playing Monopoly with their family as a kid. Plus, there’s a version or edition of Monopoly to suit virtually every taste: according to Hasbro, more than 275 million Monopoly games have been sold worldwide, it’s available in 111 countries, in 43 languages, and since 1935 more than one billion people have played the game.

A search for Monopoly on the Games Paradise site brings up a huge variety of Monopoly variations. There’s sure to be a themed version of Monopoly perfect for you or a friend or family member.

If you like films, relive your favourite movie moments and characters with the Superman Returns Collector’s Edition, the Chronicles of Narnia Edition, Pirates of the Caribbean or Pirates of the Caribbean: on Stranger Tides editions. TV shows aren’t forgotten either: how about The Office Collector’s Edition or the Seinfield Edition?

If you’d like something different from the usual American or London placenames, you could try a little virtual traveling with the Las Vegas Edition, or head to the east coast with Monopoly New York City.

Your favourite hobby is sure to be represented in Monopoly form: what lover of our furry feline friends could resist the Cat Lovers Edition, for example, or perhaps you’d prefer the Fishing Edition (just don’t let one near the other!) Or perhaps the Harley Davidson Legendary Bikes Edition is more your speed.

Music fans will go crazy over The Beatles Collector’s Edition and the Elvis 75th Anniversary Collector’s Edition, which both celebrate the greatest music-makers of our times.

There’s even a Monopoly game to fit right into your sleek modern decor—the Onyx edition, featuring cool black and silver accents throughout!

Kids can get started playing the world’s favourite game early with My First Monopoly, that includes a talking Mr Monopoly who guides you around the Monopoly town; and Monopoly Junior, a specially-designed version that turns the board into an amusement park!

Monopoly LiveMonopoly isn’t just about specially themed editions however; the game keeps appearing in new forms, portable, electronic, and even an iPhone and iPad version.

Monopoly Here And Now: The Australian Electronic Version brings Monopoly into the 21st century by using debit cards instead of cash and features an Electronic Banking unit and collectable gold tokens. If you prefer something a little more portable, check out the Monopoly Deal Card Game, a fast-paced, addictive card game where you collect three complete property sets—but beware Debt Collectors, Forced Deals and the dreaded Deal Breakers, which could change your fortunes at any time!

Monopoly really got a big makeover with Monopoly Revolution: not only does it come with a rocking soundtrack with sounds and music from the past five decades, the property values on the board have skyrocketed. Lucky you collect a cool two million every time you pass GO! It also features added hi-tech features like sound effects and an electronic banking unit to track your growing fortune. But the main change is a round board! This super-stylish Monopoly is full of fun features that will bring your favorite property-trading game to life.

The latest new version is Monopoly Live, and it’s something pretty special. For a start, the game’s classic Monopoly Money and the nomination of a Banker have been removed—even the dice have gone, all to be replaced by a computer tower that runs the game. This ten-inch high tower sits in the centre of the board, keeping its eye on the game via IR technology. It rolls the dice, counts the money, and makes sure your counters remain where they should be! Players interact with the game by waving their hands over sensors on the board—making dice rolling unnecessary. Plus, the tower can initiate surprise events such as races and auctions as you play.

So, even if your a ‘hardcore’ gamer, it’s time to have another look at good old Monopoly. There’s a reason it’s the best selling boardgame of all time!

What’s Hot: Cranium (Revised 2011 Edition)

CraniumCranium is the outrageous, award-winning board game packed with something-for-everyone fun! Whether you’re an aspiring actor, artist, data hound, or wordsmith, Cranium gives you a chance to shine.

Cranium brings families and friends together—after dinner, at parties, on rainy afternoons. When you play Cranium, you’ll use your brain in ways you never imagined and find yourself doing the unexpected. And the fun doesn’t end when the game does—you’ll never forget your uncle impersonating Celine Dion, your sister acting out pigs in a blanket, your mom spelling asparagus backwards, or your best friend sculpting Humpty Dumpty out of clay!

What’s in the box? Cranium includes the Cranium board, 600 outrageous cards covering 14 activities, a ten-sided Cranium die, a tub of cool Cranium Clay, a timer, Cranium pads and pencils, and four Cranium play pieces. Actual brains not included!

Cranium, the 2011 Edition, is a complete refresh of Cranium game, the smash-hit, award-winning board game that brings friends together through a variety of activities that provide something for everyone. Now with 600 all-new cards, and features an innovative three-way folding game board that allows players to choose the length of the game.

Guest Video Review: Battleship Galaxies

Battleship GalaxiesThe exciting new spaceship combat game from Hasbro, Battleship Galaxies: The Saturn Offensive Game Set, has quickly proved to be a hit with gamers worldwide. The perfect mix of simple gameplay with lots of tactical possibilities and, of course, those cool plastic pre-painted spaceships, has hit the mark with fans of miniatures games and boardgames alike. Hopefully it won’t be long before we start seeing more expansions so we can increase the size of our spacefleets!

Thanks again to our guest video reviewer, Drakkenstrike, for this fantastic review of one of my favourite game releases of the year.

Battleship Galaxies: The Saturn Offensive (Part 2)

Battleship Galaxies

In Part 1 of this look at the exciting new spaceship combat game from Hasbro, Battleship Galaxies: The Saturn Offensive Game Set, we opened the box and drooled over all the wonderful little plastic ships and high quality components; but now that I’ve had a chance to get those spaceships on the table, how does it play?

The rules to Battleship Galaxies are deceptively simple, but as soon as you start playing you’ll realise there’s actually quite a lot of potential for fun strategies and clever manoeuvring. Of course, there’s a very healthy dollop of luck as well, so don’t turn to this game for a ‘realistic’ depiction of space warfare—it’s in two dimensions for a start! This game was designed to be fun, and I can assure you after my first game that it receives top marks on that score!

But first, a quick summary of the simple rules. When it’s your player turn, you start with the Energy Phase, in which you gain 10 energy and draw a Tactic card (you can hold up to 10). In the Deploy Phase, you launch your vessels by paying their launch cost in energy. Smaller ships can be transported within larger ships; so for example, you could launch the ISN Everest, the largest vessel in the ISN fleet, and then in a later turn pay the launch cost to launch the Blue Sparrow squadron (3 small fighter ships) from its launch bays. When you launch a ship, you place blue shield pegs on its base equal to its shield number.

Then we reach the Action Phase and the meat of the game! One at a time you can activate ships or squadrons (3 small ships) by paying their activation cost in energy, then moving and attacking. Ships can move up to their movement value, and fire the weapons detailed on their ship card. Sometimes weapons have a further charge cost in energy. The only rule to remember when moving is that if you fly adjacent to an enemy ship you may receive 1-3 electronic countermeasure (ECM) damage, depending on the size of the enemy ship.

Playing Battleship Galaxies

The Wretch flagship Vapor’s Fate launches the Red Tougu fighter squadron into the battle.

Attacking is where you get a little flashback to those old games of Battleship, because if your target is in range, you roll the coordinate dice (one has numbers on it, the other letters) and read out the result. Your opponent then looks up the grid on his ship card and cross-indexes the coordinates to see if it’s a hit (grey area within the schematic of the ship) or a miss (white area outside the schematic). You’d be surprised at how much fun this old mechanic still is—and there’s always the chance the dice can hit the one box on your grid marked with a red star—which means it’s a critical hit and your entire ship is destroyed. Luckily this didn’t happen to any of our ships during our first game but the threat of instant destruction is always there, even for your flagship!

Each weapon gives you a certain number of attack rolls, and each successful hit deals an amount of damage. Normal damage is taken by a ship’s shields first (remove blue pegs), and then you start adding red damage pegs until the ship reaches its hull damage value and it is destroyed.

Playing Battleship GalaxiesWell, that’s the basic rules system in a nutshell. The addition of an interesting variety of Tactic cards adds a lot of interest to the mix. There are one-time events, heroes, upgrades and weapons that can be ‘attached’ to ships to make them more powerful or give them special abilities, and even sabotage which can be attached to enemy ships. Some Wretch tactic cards even allow the evil aliens to make deadly boarding actions and even take control of a human ship. Give your flagship a nuclear warhead, twin rocket launchers, or a plasma cannon; or let Bronson Skiles take command to add 1 to your ship’s primary weapon strength. In addition, depending on the experience of the ship (standard, seasoned or veteran) you may have access to additional ship abilities—for example, the ISN Torrent, if adjacent to friendly ships, can increase their weapon range.

What I want to know when I read a review, however, is does the game have that special something that makes you want to play it again? Well for me, the answer is a resounding yes, and I’m already looking forward to the next encounter in space, not to mention really hoping for the quick release of expansions sets with more spaceships. Because if there’s one thing that most of the reviews are saying about this game, is that it’s fantastic, but we need more! More spaceships, more tactic cards, and more scenarios. It would be great, for example, to have battles with only small ship squadrons on the battlefield, for intense dogfights.

There’s definitely more stuff on the works, but this being the toy giant Hasbro, they’l be watching the bottom line to see if this first release is successful enough to keep developing the product. Fingers crossed, the game will quickly develop a big hobby following and the expansions will start flowing the same way they did for Heroscape. I can assure you I won’t be able to resist buying up all the spaceships I can get my hands on for this game, and already I’m visualising epic battles between several fleets.

What we have already, however, is a game that I think hits that gaming sweet spot—simple rules that cut off all the fat, interesting options and extensions via the ship types and tactic cards, and most of all a game that is just pure fun to play. You’ll be making laser and explosion sounds, seeing the fighters zip around and through the larger ships and the huge flagships let off volleys of broadsides at each other, and desperately manoeuvring to bring as many weapons to bear as possible on the opposing ships. Battleship Galaxies is definitely what I’ve been waiting for in a spaceship combat game.

Oh, and how did I go as the commander of the human fleet? The humans lost. Say hello to your new Wretcheridian masters …

Playing Battleship Galaxies

The fighter ships are head-to-head, but the Everest is about to receive a blow that will turn the tide against the humans!
(Note that the card racks don’t come with the game but are from my own game collection.)

As usual, I’ve created a rules summary for the game which you can download at Headless Hollow.

Battleship Galaxies: The Saturn Offensive (Part 1)

Battleship Galaxies

Battleship GalaxiesMost gamers—who aren’t exclusively interested in brain-burning strategic games or highly-detailed historical simulations—can understand that thrill of getting a new game with lots of great ‘bits’. I can trace this back to getting the old Haunted House game when I was a young child, a fantastic game which was the first time I saw ‘3D’ elements used in a game. Mousetrap was also a big favourite back then. The great thing about today’s games is that you can recreate this childhood feeling of excitement even—in my case—decades later; whether you’re playing the games with friends of the same age or with your own children—and as long as you haven’t lost touch with your childhood and still love games!

As soon as I saw Battleship Galaxies: The Saturn Offensive Game Set, the new ‘hobby’ game from Hasbro, I knew this was the kind of game that I really love. What isn’t cool about spaceships in desperate combat in the depths of space?

After Hasbro decided to call it a day on HeroScape, many gamers wondered if they would be coming up with something new for the mainstream/hobby gaming crossover market. And hopefully Battleship Galaxies is that game—certainly there’s a huge potential for extra ships, scenarios, cards and other expansions, and the title ‘The Saturn Offensive Game Set’ seems to brand this one as a ‘starting set’. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let’s have a look at this wonderful new game in detail.

Opening the Battleship Galaxies box and you might have one those ‘take me back to being a kid’ moments that I was talking about earlier. Inside, a lot of high quality components nestle in a well-designed plastic tray. First and foremost of course are the awesome plastic spaceships! There are twenty in all—ten for the human Intergalactic Space Navy (ISN, the good guys), and ten for the crustacean-like Wretcheridians (the bad guys, in case you didn’t guess—the comic book explains the silly name). The ships are highly detailed and fit on very cleverly designed snap-together stands that cover a number of spaces corresponding to the size of the ship—one hex size for small ships, two hexes for medium ships, and a huge six hexes for the fleet flagships, the ISN Everest and the Vapor’s Fate. The ships are pre-painted with a base coat and wash that brings out all the detail. I imagine some people will be creating custom paint jobs for these but really, they look great as is and no further work is required.

Battleship Galaxies

Once you’ve stopped playing with the spacecraft, check out what else is in the box. There are two 10-sided dice, one marked with numbers and the other with letters. You’ll use this when you’re rolling for hits on each ship’s unique card. There is a deck of these large cards, two for each ship, which detail three different variations of each ship (standard, seasoned, or veteran); describing its weaponry, abilities and special powers.

Two energy boards and plastic markers are used, one by each player, to keep track of their fleet’s energy use. Energy is a core mechanic of the game, and you’ll spend it to launch your ships, activate them, and fire their weapons, among other things.

Two large full colour screens are used to hide your fleets before you launch them. There are 36 illustrated Tactic cards per faction, and these detail events, heroes, upgrades, weapons and even sabotage. You can attach some of these cards to your ships (and to your opponent’s ships, in the case of the sabotage cards) to give them extra abilities.

Of course, spaceships need space to fight over! Two 4-panel thick gameboards fulfil this function beautifully. Finally, there are red and blue pegs that fit into the ship bases to track shields and hull damage, and a number of tiles to represent things like debris fields, asteroids, a warp gate, orbital market, energy sources, and more.

There’s no doubt that Battleship Galaxies is a stunning-looking game when it’s all set up, as you can see from the above photo.

And there’s one other treat—a 48 page comic book which is very high quality and has a surprisingly engaging story. Definitely the best ‘comic book in a game’ implementation I’ve seen.

But how does it play? Well, you’ll have to wait for part 2 of this article in a few days time, when I’ll have got this game on the table and sent the ships into battle—plus I’ll also give you the lowdown on the easy-to-play rules.

What’s Hot: Conquest of Nerath

Conquest of NerathWage war between empires in the Dungeons & Dragons world in the Conquest of Nerath fantasy boardgame!

In the north, the undead legions of the Dark Empire of Karkoth march against the fragile League of Nerath, determined to sweep away the human kingdoms forever. To the south, the infernal Iron Circle launches its own goblin hordes in a campaign of conquest against the elves and corsairs of Vailin. From the snowy expanse of the Winterbole Forest to the sun-warmed coasts of ancient Vailin, four great powers struggle for survival.

Conquest of Nerath is a fantasy conquest game for 2-4 players, who muster armies of foot soldiers, siege engines, monsters, warships, elementals, and dragons to attack their opponents. Players employ heroes such as knights and wizards to lead their troops and explore dungeons in the search of magical artifacts and treasures to increase their power in combat. Fight across the waves with fleets of warships and raging elementals. Plunder ancient dungeons with bands of mighty heroes, searching for magical artifacts and awesome treasures that might tip the scales of battle in your favor. The fate of empires is in your hands!

This exciting new hobby game from Wizards of the Coast brings classic Dungeons & Dragons characters, creatures and settings to a large-scale empire conquest format. Cleverly, three different lengths of game are included, so you can go for a short game or an all-in epic slugfest! The factions all have their own themed card decks which makes them unique to play, and while your forces are doing battle your heroes can explore dungeons to find gold and magic items.

Conquest of Nerath includes the following components: rulebook, dice of lots of different colours and types, a large, colourful game board, 110 cards, and 252 plastic playing pieces: a huge variety of figures representing the champions and armies of Nerath, Karkoth, the Iron Circle, and Vailin—and it all comes in a well-designed plastic box insert! It’s fantastic value for money and a winner from Wizards of the Coast!

What’s Hot: Game of Life Adventures Card Game

Game of Life AdventuresWith 108 cards, the Game of Life Adventures Card Game is a brand new way to tell your life story! The entire game is played with this deck of cards, allowing you to enhance wealth, family, career, and adventure until you declare victory. Always wanted to swim with dolphins? Now’s your chance! How about becoming a jet pilot? Do it! Every new experience means more points, and more points means victory!

Game of Life Adventures Card Game is a card game following the same classic-remake series as Monopoly Deal Card Game and Sorry! Revenge Card Game. It’s a game that’s simple and quick for families. Cards are divided into 4 decks by category. You collect points by displaying cards in front of you. Each turn you must play/discard one card and refill hand. Game ends when 6 out of 8 ‘10-year’ cards are drawn.

It’s your life story—make it a big deal! Ages 8 and up, 2-4 players. Each game takes about 15 minutes. Contains 108 cards, two Reminder cards and instructions.

What’s Hot: Games to Go

Games to GoNow you can take your favourite classic game with you, wherever you go!

The Games to Go range from Hasbro are miniature versions of classic games perfect for when your travelling in the back seat of the car, on a train or plane, camping or when just relaxing with friends at home. They’re just like playing the regular-sized games, only smaller and more compact!

Check out the Games to Go versions of Battleship, Connect 4, and everybody’s favourite, Monopoly.

Trivial Pursuits!

Trivial PursuitWay back in 1979 two Canadians, Chris Haney and Scott Abbott, found that some pieces of their Scrabble set were missing, so they decided to invent their own game. In 1982 Trivial Pursuit was first unleashed on the world, two years after that some 20 million copies were sold worldwide, and in 2008 Hasbro bought out the rights in full for $20 million. Trivial Pursuit has become the archetype for game designers hoping to make their millions out of game design, and one of the few games most ‘non-gamers’ think of when they think of boardgames (along with Scrabble and Monopoly).

Who would have thought that a simple game about answering trivia questions would have been successful? It is probably the fact that the game is so simple that has made it such a phenomenon and a pop culture icon. That, and the fact that it so easily lends itself to expansions, variants, and promotional tie-ins—just plug in a different set of trivia questions and you’re good to go.

Let’s have a look at just seven different versions of Trivial Pursuit; enough to keep trivia buffs happy for many nights of gaming!

A great place to start is the Trivial Pursuit 25th Anniversary Edition. This special edition to mark 25 years of Trivial Pursuit includes extra options, extra strategy, and three levels of questions—easy, medium and hard. Special zones allow you to take your opponents wedges and move their tokens for extra challenging play. 432 question-and-answer cards keep the variety of questions fresh. The perfect way to bring back a love of trivia games in your house!

Trivial Pursuit FamilyOne of the great things about gaming is that it’s the perfect way to get the family together, and the Trivial Pursuit Family Edition is just the thing fpr your next family game night. The Kid Card questions are just right for younger players, while the Adult Cards questions challenge older players on their own level. So everyone gets in on the trivia fun—and everyone has a chance to win! The Family Edition features 600 cards in 6 fun categories: People & Places, Good Times, Yesterdays, Art & Culture, Created World, Games & Leisure.

The music industry is a perfect subject for trivia buffs, and these two special collector’s edition sets: Beatles Trivial Pursuit and Rolling Stones Trivial Pursuit, are perfect for music fans and players of a certain age demographic!

Beatles EditionHow well do you know The Beatles? The Beatles Trivial Pursuit is the first-ever completely authorized Beatles trivia board game. Included are card holders featuring famous photos of The Fab Four, a custom rock ‘n’ roll Beatles die, three difficulty levels, and six trivia categories: History, Songs, Albums and Singles, Movies, Beatles in America, and On Their Own. With over 2,500 questions covering two decades of everything Beatles, this game is mandatory for any true fan!

Sure it’s only rock ‘n’ roll… but you’ll like the Rolling Stones Trivial Pursuit. For the first time ever, one of the most legendary rock ‘n’ roll bands teams up with America’s favorite trivia game so fans can get some satisfaction by showing off all they know about The Rolling Stones. With over 2,000 questions from six categories covering the band’s history, music, accomplishments and more, there’s enough trivia for fans of all levels. So get your friends and neighbors together for a game you’ll want to play ‘til the whip comes down! Includes custom die and playing pieces featuring the iconic Licks logo.

For something completely different, check out Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas Trivial Pursuit. This special Quick Play edition features over 400 questions ranging in difficulty level from easy to medium to hard, for those fans of the movie—or your favourite Goth—who know all about the residents of Halloween Town. This travel-size game includes six categories of questions featuring: the Pumpkin King, Halloween Town, Christmas Town, Trick-or-Treat, Songs and Behind The Scenes, in addition to a custom die and a coffin-shaped box for easy storage and on-the-go screaming fun!

The endless popularity of Trivial Pursuit has also meant that new versions of the game are being created all the time. Take for example the Bet You Know It Edition. This edition introduces high stakes betting to trivia; players bet on whether or not their opponents know the answer to a question. Guess correctly and you’ll earn chips that can be used to buy wedges—or you can earn wedges by answering questions correctly on your turn. On each turn you’re able to choose your favorite from one of four rotating topic cards in the specially designed Mixologist envelope. So, players may answer a Geography question about Dogs, Breakfast, Broadway, or Jingles. 1,800 fresh questions on 300 cards also feature a variety of new styles including images and multiple choice. With a chance to earn a wedge on every turn—victory is that much closer!

Finally the Trivial Pursuit Steal Card Game is the first ever Trivial Pursuit card game that combines traditional question and answers with the strategy of stealing your opponents’ wedges, all in a quick-play card game that you can enjoy in 15 minutes.

As you can see, things have come a long way from the basic Trivial Pursuit set that we all remember. So it’s time to brush off those brain cells, get friends and family together, and have a trivia night? Your first question is as follows: “what year was Trivial Pursuit invented?”