Jul 232011
 

If there is one irrefutable fact of gaming, one universal truth, one concept that can not be argued, one idea that can never be proven false, one thing that’s really, really true, it is the following:  dice are fun.

And so it goes that the wonderful game, We Didn’t Playtest This At All, of which we spoke last week, receives one more expansion pack, dubbed simply Dice Are Fun.  Packaged similarly to the Chaos Pack expansion, Dice Are Fun is able to be played along with the base game or as a stand-alone.  With the base game, players shuffle the deck and place the instruction card on top, along with a handful of dice.  Then, as players wish, they can draw a die and a card by discarding four cards from their hand or two starred cards.  As a stand-alone, players each need a D20 and something to keep score with as they will be working through the cards, one by one, slowly gaining or losing points on their D20, hoping to eventually stand at 40.  As with the other versions of this game, it plays fast, light, and funny.

It is a small world after all.  Why?  Because Philippe Keyaerts is not only the creator of the popular Small World, but also the new Olympos.  Structured around a theme of ancient Greece, Olympos is a multi-faceted strategy board game that sounds a barrows elements of Small World and 7 Wonders.  Basically, two boards are laid out, one that displays a map of ancient Greece and Atlantis, while the second displays pictures that represent “developments”.  The amount of actions players have is based off of where they are on the game’s timeline, but, regardless, the two types of actions are to expand settlers on the map game board or to purchase or build discoveries on the developments game board.  So, like 7 Wonders, there are numerous ways to acquire points and, thus, the victory.  Expect a well-designed, strategic experience when you pick up Olympos.

Ask yourself one question:  can you trust me?  Hopefully so, or else why are you reading this, but in the game of Double Agent you should never believe that you can trust anyone.  A two player game in the relatively new Duo Collection from Matagot, Double Agent has opponents facing off by using six secret agents to steal important government documents.  The trick here is that each player uses the same six agents, so neither knows which ones work for them.  Deception abounds and trickery ensues over the course of a fast-paced twenty minute play time.

Turn any table into King Arthur’s legendary round table with Artus.  You could also use a saw, but that gets sawdust everywhere and you’ll probably cut a finger off or something.  Anyway, to the game.  Artus uses its theme to full effect by using Arthur’s round table as the center piece of the game.  Players set “knights”, “royalty”, and unaffiliated pieces in various numbered spaces around the table.  The pieces rotate around the table, trading off the king position based on points acquired throughout the game.  Just remember your table manners.

In the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion fears the elephant.  Obviously, that’s not how the song goes, but in the two-player game of Jungle, that’s how it works.  Players use animal tokens to move across a compact game board utilizing each animal’s unique ability over the others.  For instance, all creatures fear the elephant, but the elephant will run screaming from the mouse.  As the game operates on simple mechanics, it can be picked up in a matter of minutes.  But it may take years to become a true king of the jungle.

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