Mar 082013
 

Buckle in, folks, because after a week off because of snow trouble, New Game Stuff is back!  And tonight there is a long, long list of newness to discuss, so it’s just the facts.

FoxMind games delivers one of the most inventive train games in a long while with String Railway.  Using bendable pieces of plastic rope, players both build the board and connect train depots.  Two to five players take turns drawing depot tokens, placing them, and attempting to link them with the pieces of string at their disposal.  Easy to learn and very tactile, String Railway is perfect for families or friends.

A tile laying game of the most serene nature, Zen Garden will put your soul at ease.

Mayfair Games, makers of fine family games, adds some enticing dimensions to the standard tile laying scenario.  Up to four players compete against each other by constructing their zen gardens using tiles of trees, mountains, and streams.  Each player, however, has a special pattern they must try and complete by moving their tiles around the board with special lantern tokens.  The game also comes with various levels of play to increase the difficult the more you play.

The front says Gentlemen Thieves, but the back says Arsene Lupin.  And, no, that is not an indication that this game has anything to do with mullets.  Borrowing the world’s most famous thief, Lupin, Gentlemen Thieves has players taking on the role of a thief and joining forces with other thieves (as long as it serves them) to heist valuable items (represented by tokens) from famous locations across Paris.  Just remember to put on your black gloves.

In Ground Floor the building is already built, now you’ve just got to populate it, employee it, advertise your product, cut down on costs, challenge your rivals, and grow your business.  Then, maybe, you get to rest.  Detailed in its level of strategy, Ground Floor involves bartering, resource management, organization, and any number of other mechanics.  If you’re an Agricola or Puerto Rico fan, get in on the Ground Floor.

The game is a foot, Watson!

Lady Alice is a recently released Sherlock Holmes themed board game allowing players to take on the rolls of kids studying under the tutelage of Holmes himself.  During the game players make deductions about evidence, placing their guesses in a folder.  When the round is over, each guess is revealed to either be true or false, with every player marking down the results in order to solve the mystery.  If you picked up the recently released Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective, this game is a perfect companion piece.

The reprint steamroller continues to roll from Dungeons & Dragons with the brand new hardcover edition of Dungeons of Dread.  This classic AD&D tome collects the original “S” series of adventure models, three of which were written by Gary Gygax himself.  For those out there who know the history, these are some of the most well known dungeons in D&D history, perfect for players learning the system by playing these reprint copies.  As usual all the original material is reprinted in its original format.

It’s going to be Easter soon and that means bunnies.  And bunnies mean violent murder of bunnies.

Wait, what?!!  Steve Jackson changes the meaning of Easter with the newest Munchkin booster pack, Easter Eggs.  Evil rabbits are running around all over the place and its your duty to smack’em down while wearing a Sundae Dress and Bunny Slippers.  But watch out for Peter Cottonmouth and Little Bunny ‘Thulhu.

There are four doors, but no exits.

That’s the premise of Room-25.  One to six players are locked in rooms, running from room to room, trying to find the one and only door which leads to rumored exit that is Room-25.  In gaming formats ranging from solo to group cooperative, players attempt to coordinate actions in order to find the mythic room and escape.  But beware, because some students may turn out to be undercover guards, ready to stop the players at the most inopportune moment.

Me matey, there be Pirate Dice off the coast of Pulp Fiction Isle!

By rolling and strategically placing customized D6′s, players sail the seven seas, doing battle with their rivals and searching for sunken and lost treasure.  Each die controls attacks and movement as players sail across the provided map.  Control the direction and speed of your ship carefully, though, as you don’t want to overshoot or undershoot that last hooray!

The recently released Archipelago pirate game receives a rare Solo Player Expansion this week.  Unlike any other expansion, this one allows players to convert the game into a one-player mode.  The pack contains 27 scenarios, each with a different time limit and win condition.  You are also allowed to choose whatever character you wish in order to play.

A game of ancient Egypt, Kemet has players competing over a succession of rounds, divided into categories of night and day.  Within the day phase, players enact their magical abilities in order to defeat your opponent, while at night your regroup and build up your mystical energies.  Wizards can even spend special Prayer Points to bring additional creatures into their armies.

May 262012
 

Okay, lets just start with the 900 pound airbender in the room.

Yes, the second half of the Avatar the Last Airbender miniseries, The Promise, ships this Wednesday. I now expect overjoyed pandemonium to ensue.

If you haven’t picked up part 1 (which we still have, by the way), this story takes place after the end of the mega-popular cartoon series. Now that Ang and Zuko have brought peace to the world, they are trying to keep it. Zuko has a more difficult time with this than Ang, pitting the two against each other once more. This time, however, Zuko has made Ang promise that he will kill him if he ever begins to resemble his father’s fascistic ways. The writing strikes a perfect similar note to the show, feeling just like another episode, while the artwork apes the cartoon’s visuals identically. A must own for any Avatar fan.

Continuing in alphabetical order, a new set of Avengers action figures comes out this Wednesday, straight from the most popular movie of all time, ever, ’till infinity and beyond. Yup, snag four of the core Avengers (Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, and the Hulk) in one go my picking up these four piece set. Each figure stands at eight inches and is fully poseable. Now you can recreate all the Shawarma-eating-action of the film!

If you missed out on Batman Noel last year and are kicking yourself because of that fact, give your butt a rest and make it in to pick up the newest stand-alone Batman graphic novel, Batman: Death by Design. Borrowing certain thematic elements of the recent Night of the Owls run in Batman, Death by Design focuses on the history of Gotham and the buildings that have told its story. Bad part of that is some of these buildings are blowing up. Thus, Batman has to put on his detective cap and solve the case.

Finally, tonight, a crossover that’s been in the cards for decades, but seemed totally unlikely to happen is actually coming to fruition. After fifty years, Doctor Who and Star Trek are finally crossing over this coming Wednesday. When the Cybermen and Borg join forces to do evil things to the timey wimey-ness of the universe, the Doctor and the Next Gen crew must join together to kick some adaptive butt. With beautiful painted artwork and a solid writing team, this is a nerd event not to be missed.