Old School Cool : Snorta!

Le Zellers près de mon travail en avait plein à l’époque où ils ont fermé. J’aurais du en acheter une dizaine.

Développé vers la fin des années 90, édité à l’origine par Out of the Box (éditeur de Apples to Apples) en 2004, le jeu est passé chez Mattel pour une sortie grand public en Anglais en 2007.img_2281

Le contenu du jeu est simple:

  • Un sac en tissu rempli de petite figurines d’animaux
  • Huit petites granges
  • Un paquet de cartes représentant les même animaux

On distribue tout les cartes au joueurs (de 4 à 8) et chacun les places dans un paquet sans les avoir regardé. Chaque joueur pige un animal du sac et le place devant lui.

Et c’est ici que ça devient intéressant: chaque joueur, a tour de rôle, doit imiter le cri de son animal. On le refait une deuxième fois après avoir placé la petite grange au dessus de son animal pour le caché. À partir de ce moment, plus personne ne peut voir les animaux des autres joueurs et doit essayer de se rappeler le cri de chaque joueur.

À tout de rôle, chaque joueur tourne la première carte de son paquet et la place devant lui de façon à ce que TOUT le monde voit la carte en même temps. C’est très important pour éviter la triche!

Il est inévitable que le jeu arrivera à un point où deux joueurs auront la même carte. À ce moment, ces joueurs doivent tenter de faire le cri de l’animal de l’autre joueur en premier. Celui qui réussi donne sa pile de cartes déjà révélée au “perdant”.

Le jeu continue jusqu’à ce qu’un joueur se débarrasse de toute ces cartes.

La beauté du jeu vient de sa simplicité. Les règles sont simple donc tout le monde peut y jouer. Mais il est impossible de ne pas éclater de rire à regarder un autre joueur s’efforcer de se rappeler de l’animal de son adversaire et passer à travers la liste complète des animaux.

Le seul point négatif du jeu est la difficulté à se le procurer. Introuvable à l’achat neuf, il reste quand même relativement dur à trouver en usagé. Cela ne change en rien son prix qui reste abordable. Avec un peu d’effort, on peut le trouver à moins de 30$.

Je le recommande fortement à ceux qui ont le rire facile et qui n’ont pas peur d’un peu de ridicule.

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The 10 X 10 challenge

The 10×10 challenge is fairly new in the board gaming community. It originated on BGG when Sarah Reed, one of the hosts of the wonderful podcast Our Turn! and co-designer of Project Dreamscape, was getting into the hobby and like many of us was getting drawn into the cult of the new. She came up with the 10×10 as a remedy, I reached out to Sarah and here is her story of how the 10×10 came about:

I wanted to play a new game every time we sat down, but I was always so frustrated at learning so many new rules and not remembering them months later when we sat down for a second play of a game. So near the end of 2013, I was chatting with some ladies in the Women & Gaming forum on Board Game Geek about my frustrations and how I wanted to focus on learning a game better and really getting into the strategy of it.

In December 2013, I created a GeekList with some really general guidelines on how to join the Play 10 Board Games 10 Times Each Challenge. My friends from the Women & Gaming forum joined in, which was like 10 people. And then 20 other people joined in. Then 50 more people joined. And they started asking questions to clarify the rules of the challenge. And then 100 more people joined. It just exploded and suddenly I was running a huge challenge where I was officiating what was acceptable and what was not. It totally blew my mind! I had hit upon something that really resonated with others – getting burnt out by the cult of the new.

I can certainly relate to this sentiment. I have felt the pressure to play the latest and greatest, to not get left behind, in the fast paced world of board game fandom it can be easy to feel left out if you haven’t played the games on the hotness meter. I still love getting my hands on some new and highly anticipated game, I love learning and playing new games but I have learned that this shouldn’t come at the expense of really digging into and savouring games.

I first read about the 10×10 on BGG but noticed it has spread to the Reddit boardgame community this year and I really got inspired to try when I started using BG Stats to track my plays. BG Stats is a neat little app that allows you to track plays, scores and other data about your gaming but it also has a add-on that will let you set a variety of challenges for yourself like the 10×10. The 10×10 challenge really struck a chord with me, I decided I would choose games that I really want to dig into for a variety of reasons like exploring their depth and studying deeper strategy, they are games I can get quality time with my kids with, or they are games that allow me some great one on one time with my spouse. I think I got a good mix of games:

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My 10×10 Challenge in the BG Stats app

Since I filled my list with games that I know the people I game with the most like to play, I have no plans to substitute any of these games but I also have no need to label it as hardcore (when you pick 10 games and cannot alter those choices). I don’t see the point in taking something I love and do for leisure and turning into another stress in my life but others may want to challenge themselves.

Now if you have been in the hobby for a while it probably isn’t too hard for you to realistically pick ten games that you could see yourself playing ten times and that you would have the opportunity to do so in the span of a year but if you are a newer gamer Sarah has some tips on getting started so you can get the most out of the challenge:

  1. If this is your first time doing the challenge, stick to the normal challenge. Keep track of plays, let it go mostly natural to 10 plays of 10 games. Just guide it towards the conclusion
  2. Make sure you own the game. Don’t include KS games you don’t have as they are always late. And don’t use your friend’s copy because you never know when they’ll move or sell off the game
  3. If you have a gaming group or gaming partner you’ll be relying on to do the challenge, get them involved in picking games. They’ll be more likely to want to help you finish
  4. If it becomes a chore to do, stop doing the challenge. Or if you’re doing hardcore, downgrade to normal. This is supposed to be fun. There are enough chores in life without adding one that doesn’t need to be one.

I believe that the 10×10 challenge is a great addition to the board game community. It is a great tool for getting people to think about and possibly change their gaming habits. I think that each person’s 10×10 can have a variety of themes or goals. I’ve stated my goals yours might be to learn and master 10 train games, or to get in a lot of plays of gateway games, or play only 2 player games with your spouse or partner for quality time, the reasons go on and on as to why I think a 10×10 challenge can only help to deepen ones love and appreciation of board games.

I’ll leave you with some more words form Sarah as to what she has appreciated from the growth and acceptance of the 10×10 challenge in our community.

I was so happy with how many people enjoyed my challenge! My favorite part is hearing how positively the challenge has affected people. It’s brought families together, it’s saved unplayed games from being sold before being given a chance and it’s reinvigorated people’s love of the hobby.

Old School Cool : Il n’y a pas que le culte du neuf

On m’a demandé de participer à ce blog. J’ai dit oui tout de suite, en tant qu’amateur de jeux de société, n’importe quelle opportunité d’en parler est la bienvenue.

Sauf que… de quoi je vais parler ? C’est facile autour d’une table de parler pendant des heures de jeux. C’est différent avec un groupe qui suit et qui fait partie de l’actualité du jeux. J’aurais du y réfléchir avant de m’ouvrir la trappe!

Après avoir longuement réfléchi en faisant les cent pas dans ma salle de jeu et à regarder ma collection, j’en suis venu a la conclusion que mes jeux couvrent une période beaucoup plus longue que bien des gens qui commencent à s’intéresser aux jeux de société moderne.

Pour chaque jeux récent et encensé par la critique, des dizaines passent inaperçu. Pire encore, des centaines de jeux plus vieux sont vite oublié pour passer à la prochaine nouveauté. Et y’a rien de mal à ça! Les nouveaux jeux utilisent souvent d’ancienne mécaniques ou concepts et les améliorent. On a tous la piqûre du culte du neuf et moi même j’en suis victime.

Donc dans ce blog, j’aimerais vous parler de jeux qui ont un certain âge, mais qui sauront piqué votre curiosité au même point qu’un jeu fraîchement sorti.

Les règles sont les suivantes:

  • Chaque jeu présenté doit avoir été édité pour la première fois il y a au moins 10 ans.
  • Doit être relativement facile à se procurer. Évidemment, c’est relatif donc au moins 10 copies disponible sur le Geek Market de BGG sera utilisé comme barème.
  • Ne pas faire partie des jeux de type “gateway” ou extrêmement populaire. Ticket to Ride est sorti en 2004. Je pense qu’on a pas vraiment besoin d’écrire à propos de ces jeux la.
  • Le jeu doit être le fun!

Si vous avez des idées de jeux à suggérer qui correspondent à ces critères, n’hésitez pas à m’en faire part et je me ferai un plaisir de trouvé une copie pour l’essayer.

The Bead Game

The Bead Game was fully funded on Indiegogo in November 2016 and should be shipping to backer in April 2017. The campaign introduces us to the Bead Game or Gaming Station like this:

This is a gaming station that allows you to play over 100 games straight from one compact set. You can discover a wide variety of historic and traditional board games, as well as rich set of dice and paper and pen games – all from cultures around the world. In fact, you can add game variations or invent a new game rules by using Game Canvas on web App today at www.beads.games

This system gives players all the parts and pieces needed to play over 100 traditional games like Checkers, Senet, Mancala, Nine Men’s Morris, Queah, and more. Now a box of beads and some boards to play ancient board games is not new and can be found at many big box stores and discount retailers but what I think is quite interesting with this project is the app integration. I am not a fan of apps that are required to play a game but this is different. This is like the open source movement in information technology. The game canvas app will not only allow users to find new games to play and rate them but it will give them the tools to create variations of games or entirely new games using a common set of components and to share them via the app with all the other users world wide.

Others in the To Die For crew had some concerns about how the game would work with colour blind users and would have like a little more of a tutorial about the game play of some of the standard games but they agreed that the concept itself was interesting.

While I don’t think this will appeal to a wide margin of the Board Game community that are looking for more modern Euro or American games. I could see this appealing to those that enjoy abstract games and to people that want a tool kit to tinker with design and want a base of play testers.

 

** To Die For Games was approached by Adepts Creative to preview this game**

2p: Patchwork

Two player only games have a bit of a stigma in the board gaming community, but I think this is changing as gamers realise that playing epic games of Twilight Imperium 3 or Battlestar Galactica isn’t all there is to the hobby.  Personally, I have really gotten into two player games in the last couple of years. The big change for me was that I really started to focus on getting some playtime in with my spouse. I was tired of trying to only game around my family’s schedule and wanted to work it into our schedule. My first step into this world was the wonderful little take on Agricola that is Agricola: All Creatures Big and Small but the real break through was Uwe Rosenberg’s Patchwork.
Patchwork is an excellent introductory  game because of its whimsical theme, familiar Tetris like shapes, and abstract game play. It is not nearly as daunting as some heavily themed, rule heavy games like my favourite 2p game Twilight Struggle.

Now I am far from the first to mention the greatness of Patchwork. In fact, if you ask any board gamer for an easy to teach and fun game to introduce someone to the world of 2p games then invariably you will get told to buy Patchwork. This is why I want to start off this series exploring 2p games with what I agree is the perfect place to start.

Patchwork is simple to teach.  Players take turns choosing pieces to fill their grid. There are 3 factors to consider on each piece. 

1. How many buttons will it cost to take the piece?

2. How much time will the piece cost on the timer track?

3. How much income will that piece generate in further turns?

Despite the simplicity of the game, Patchwork has some real meat to it and plenty of strategic and interesting choices.  This is what I think makes it so spectacular. Simple to teach, easy to learn, hard to master, and quick enough to play several rounds in an evening. 

Gone quiltin' #boardgames #bgg

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Gaming as a Family

As many gamers can attest to, finding the time to play all the games you want to can be difficult. This is especially true of those gamers, like myself, who are parents. This isn’t to say that gamers without kids aren’t busy but their schedule is usually more flexible and has less moving parts and dependencies.
Gaming as a parent has phases, each with pros and cons. When your kids are infants and toddlers you can usually work an evening around the kids. These young children are usually early to bed so you can have people over early evening to get a game in but you probably are playing to late into the night as you will have an early wake up call, and maybe a few in the night. As the kids get older your evenings get busy! Homework, soccer, hockey, piano, more homework…This is the phase I am currently in. I have a teenager and a set of twins in the second grade. Our evenings are packed but I have found a few things that have really worked well for this gaming family.

First of all I am lucky to have a spouse that is supportive and helps me schedule game nights with people either in our home or out and about. Unfortunately even with a spouse that wants to help you get to games groups it won’t always happen this is where I got lucky once again. She is an excellent game partner. This took some work to really fine tune. When I first got into serious hobby boardgames she was happy to play the gateway games and some of the deeper titles but as I dig in and started getting into really meaty, long games I lost her. This was OK, I had my heavy gaming group to scratch that itch, but I really like gaming with my spouse and I had to find a way to make that happen. The real breakthrough in our couples gaming was Patchwork. It didn’t have a dry cold war theme, it wasn’t in your face conflict, but it still gave us to sink our teeth into and develop some strategies. We started playing regularly in the evenings rather than sitting in front of the TV. It has quickly became our thing, we’ve added some games to the regular rotation like Lotus, Castles of Burgundy, Agricola and others. These gaming sessions which started in order to supplement my game group has become my primary gaming and some of the most satisfying as it is also great time spent with my favourite person.

The second big change was that the kids are now old enough to play interesting games. As young children we played all the usual suspects, Candy Land, Guess Who, The Game of Life etc… All of which teach kids the very basics of winning losing, reading a board, rolling dice but are not a whole lot of fun for the adults involved. The first game that started our transition was Carcassonne but the real breakthrough was King of Tokyo. When King of Tokyo entered our lives everyone one fell in love with it and my family of 5 spent many hours chucking dice and pitting our monsters (I’m always Cyberbunny) against each other. We have since added many games that all the family loves but our well used copy of King of Tokyo has a special place in my heart.

My oldest son is transitioning into his teens so is spending less time playing with his parents but when he does I can really get into some bigger games. His first love was Summoner Wars, we play that a lot! I still remember when the tables turned and he started consistently beating me at it. Recently, We had a game night with one of his friends not long ago where we go Mechs vs Minions to the table and we flew through the first four missions laughing and trash talking all night long. His latest acquisition is Cry Havoc which I got him as I thought it would appeal to his video gamer side. It’s science fiction theme as well as the constant and direct conflict was a big hit.

We don’t set a specific game night, we don’t force anyone to play but there is lots of gaming happening in my house. It always makes me smile when of the kids says “I’m bored” and the solution is usually a board game. I’ve tried very hard to make our love of gaming grow organically. I make an effort to see what games work so I can have a good idea of what new games to introduce. So if I have any advice to someone that wants to get in lots of games is to introduce the people you spend the most time with to games. Another key is to let it happen naturally, pay attention to what the others like and don’t push. If you shove your hobby on people they’ll shove back, but if you make it inviting and enjoyable you are far more likely to get buy in. The single best advice though is go into it with the goal of spending great quality with your family with a perk of it being around a game board, make sure they know how special your time together is and it won’t make them feel like they are just there to enable your gaming.

If you have any questions about getting your family or spouse to play games leave a comment or send me a message and I will be more than willing to talk you through it and maybe guide you to games that may work.