I got Zooloretto yesterday and we played a 3 player game last night. Coloretto was my first intro to this exciting world and Zooloretto is a boardgame implementation of the same. Super game! It carries the same elements of Coloretto and adds some interesting variations bringing in money into the game. The choices are good and the gameplay is very involving and flows smoothly. It is also much simpler than last year’s SDJ winner Thurn & Taxis. Ideal game for the family and just that little extra to keep a hardcore gamer interested.

Dragon Delta – A good fun game

1. The game was a big hit with a couple of kids aged 6 and 10. Bth wanted to play it again after one play!

2. The game is a typical race game and reminded me of the old Chinese Checkers with the strategic euro element that makes it so much more interesting and fun.

3. The components are well produced though the box just looks a bit big for the amount of stuff in it.

4. The rules are simple and easy and can be explained in 5 minutes.

5. Pawns are moved across the delta based on a series of action cards. Each player chooses five cards out of their hand of action cards and place them face down below simultaneously.

6. The delta is filled with rocks. Stones have to be placed on the rocks, and planks across two stones to create a series of rickety bridges on which the pawn moves.

7. The dragon cards in each player’s hand cancel out the action of another player and adds just that element of nastiness to the game.

8. The other interesting factor is that though the planks are colour coded, this is mainly for the initial placement. There is also a restriction that when one plays, the card that helps one to replenish a plank from the board, you cannot take a similar sized plank that you already have. You can also not hold more than 2 colours of planks.

9. The game is won when the first player moves a pawn to a village on the opposite side of the delta. This again is colour coded in such a way that specific pawns have to move to specific villages in order to win.

10. Overall a good fun game, can be used as a gateway game also, has enough strategic elements to keep everyone interested. The theme also seems to sit very well on the game.

Thurn & Taxis: Power and Glory – Session report

This is a session report I posted on BGG.

I had enjoyed Thurn & Taxis so much ever since it came out. Most of our plays were only 2 player sessions with the wife, but the game was great and after I read somewhere that Alan Moon loved playing it with his wife, we were elated. So when the expansion came out I was keen to get. It came yesterday and I immediately got it out for a 2 player session with the wife. The game essentially plays the same as the original, but the ability to complete routes based on a flexible carriage strength is really clever. Instead of trying to increase the carriage strength as in the original, the focus now is to get rid of all the house by placing them on cities not placed before. There was also a race for the free cities early on, and the new 5 point token on a 8 route meant that we both concentrated on longer routes in the beginning. Strategically, the game offers a choice of going for longer routes across regions to place more houses on the board, and get the larger point tokens. Or you can opt for smaller routes and finish off provinces early. The main difference with the original in terms of game play is this flexibility in approach There seemed to be a streamlined predictability in the original where we constantly had to upgrade carriages and then go for longer routes. Overall a welcome addition to our personal game shelf. Though it may not be worth the cost if you have not enjoyed the original much and played it enough and need a change. PS: I lost the game badly!

Thurn & Taxis and the expansion

I got the new expansion for Thurn & Taxis and immediately we played a 2p session. Firstly I realised that I had played T&T wrongly for so long now. I have completely forgotten to reduce the points for houses not placed onto the board at the end of the game! Thanks to BGG I noticed it only today. anyway coming to the expansion, it is a new board with new cards. The only thing you need from the original game is the houses in the different colours. As someone posted on BGG, you don’t even need the original if you just get the expansion! Personally the expansion provides me with just that different feel and interest for someone who has got bored of the original but liked it a lot. So unless you really loved the original, played a lot, got bored, but would not mind playing the same game with a subtle shift, this expansion is not worth it.

Games played May 07

Wow! Have completed 2 years of boardgaming. Things are just hotting up. Am getting a few more games this weekend and there are a few more games lying unplayed at home. So a good couple of months ahead on the gaming front.

May was the month of annual holidays for children. This means the kids in our building will get to some gaming at home. The tough part was in deciding what game to play. Shreyasi always has a game in mind and will not play anything else most of the time. Guha loves train games, while Sai wants to play a game he has ever played. We did however manage to a good month of gaming, 61 plays and 24 different games.

TTR:  USA 1910 – 8 plays – Still remains the favorite for everyone. Sushanth also has started playing it.

Bohnanza & Thurn & taxis – 6 plays each – Two of Sai’s friends actually landed up one evening and managed to learn and play T & T which was good. Bohnanza of course is Sushanth’s favorite game.

High Society & Settlers of Catan – 5 plays each – Settlers is played when Varadu comes in during his lunch hour at office. I enjoyed High Society again after a long time.

Cartagena, Prices of Florence & San Juan – 3 plays -We finally played the Cartagena version with open cards and it was a different challenge. Prices was the new game for the month and instant hit. Superb game and right t the top of my all time games along with Puerto Rico. San Juan, again only 2p games but it is getting closer and closer. All three games were won by a single point!

Alhambra, Atlantic Star, Carcassonne, Railroad Tycoon & TTR:Marklin – 2 plays each

Coda, Lucca Citta, Mystery Rummy: Jack the Ripper,  Power Grid Italy/France, Puerto Rico, Ra, Schildkroetenrennen, TTR, Tutankhamen & Wildlife – 1 play each – Lucca Citta was another new gam. It was ok but may not hit the table again. It was nice to play Ra again. Super game. I feel it is better than Amun-Re. Enjoyed Tutankhamen again. we finally played a full 6p game of Wildlife and it was really great.

Recruiting another gamer

My 6 year old son, Sushanth has a very close friend called Ashwin. Both these kids spend hours playing with their “SPD Power Rangers” figurines etc. Sushanth of course has just discovered that he can play so many more games in my collection. Ashwin for long had been reluctant to join in on the gaming action at home. Yesterday he finally could not take it anymore and decided to have a shot. We were playing High Society and it was an instant hit. He loved it and said “Cool game!” Here is hope that another gamer will soon be recruited into our small community.