Falling in Love With the Gallerist and Other Adventures in Gaming
Oooh I’m in love. A lot of my friends who know what my tastes are in gaming said that I would like this game and they were bang on right!
My friend who had played it the week before volunteered to teach during our gaming session which made me sigh in relief because even after thoroughly reading the manual and watching a play through I didn’t feel confident that I would remember all the details. There is a lot to cover.
So there are two types of board gamers. Ones who play to have fun and socialise and then there are others who play so that they can feel the sweet ecstasy of having their brains put in a blender. Guess which category I’m in?
The Gallerist is one of the most complex yet satisfying game I have ever played. I love worker placement and this game is worker placement on steroids.
So, not only do you have main actions, you have a kick out action-where you can spend influence to do a second action, and then on top of that you have assistants who can do actions on contracts-first when you take them and then another when you flip them over by selling a work of art. The number of things you can do and can combo to get the best results is just mind-boggling. This is your “what if you only had to take one game to play on an island” choice. I’d be happy if this is the only game I get to play from now on, over and over again. It’s that amazing.
I was pretty lucky to be playing with people who had played it before and with somebody who played like a machine. The human machine won with 180 points! It helped me see how you can max out your turns and what you can do to get the most points. I am in awe of people who figure out the rhythm of a game and play it out in all its beauty. This was such an awesome gaming experience. I’ll be sure to pester my friends to play it again…and soon!!!
PS. This happened too. Squeeee!!!
In Magic Maze, a co-op game, all players get to control all four characters simultaneously. Each player is given a direction and they can make the character move according to the tile given to them – right, left, up, down, up an escalator and through what we called a worm hole (Maths and Physics nerds in the house!). The catch is players can’t talk, can only tap on the table with a giant token on a player’s tile and have increments of 3 minutes to do their actions. Everybody has to steal their weapons and get out of the Magic Mall in about fifteen minutes!
Magic Maze was nuts with seven people. Nuts but super fun. The table was shaking with us tapping all at the same time.
The kids were clamouring for a game where they can beat up on each other and so after a co-op game we moved onto trying to kill each and become the ultimate King of Tokyo.
They were pretty happy with the special abilities you could buy with their power cubes and even happier when we used the Power Up expansion that gave their characters evolutions. By the second game, they were experts because they killed me in turn 5. Dammit! These young ones are bloodthirsty!!!
Xia, Unfair, Omen: Edge of Aegean and Skyward
Tell me that we’re playing a space themed game and I am there! Xia was awesome. My friends and I have a joke. Sometimes space games are bad because there’s too much pew pew and not enough space exploration. This one has enough of both to keep it fresh and interesting. You could also upgrade your ship, outfit it with weapons or cargo holds. Sort of like a sci-fi patchwork. I wish we had time to finish it because I also had beginner’s luck on my dice roll. Look at that pic of me rolling a 20 on a d20. Yeah baby!
I wasn’t really a fan of Omen: Edge of the Aegean . If I play a card game I want it to play smoothly and this had just to many steps that I found to could be more streamlined. The art also could have been improved with brighter colours and more modern illustrations. But maybe that’s just my preference. I really like bright colours in my games. My friend said I would love it once I got more plays but with so many games I want to play I don’t see myself coming back to it.
In Skyward, four factions are working together to build a an airborne city. So really it had me with pigeons, robots and flying cats! The game has an awesome mechanic. The warden, the role switches between players, takes cards from the main deck and puts them into separate piles. The players then get to choose in turn order among the separate piles, with the Warden choosing last. It was really hard but fun to try and balance the two piles, making sure you’re not too greedy and get left with a pile of cards you don’t like or need. I won my second game! The game ended so fast and I wanted to do so many things arghhh.
Unfair! I really loved it. The actions and events, even the bad ones, fit with the theme-building the most awesome theme park in all the land.
For example, there’s an event where your attractions break down. You can fix that by having a technician on staff. There was also a wad of cash event (a perfect name and really a solution to everything not just building theme parks) that stopped another player from dismissing your staff member. This will go into my collection if I recover from buying The Gallerist.
I’m pretty happy that I was able to squeeze a lot of gaming these past few weeks. I’ve also been playing Food Chain Magnate, Targi, Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilisation and Takenoko online. Hopefully, I get to play more once the school holidays begin. Can’t wait to game everyday!!!