Saturday, 31 March 2018

Max, meet Nux. Nux, meet Bloodb... Max.

Rules wise just a warbuggy. But for this collection, an important warbuggy...


Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Board Game Corner: Creative Packaging

Recently I ordered a game called Fugitive, and when it arrived I at first struggled to open the box... it looked like you should push the side like a box of matches, but no give there. It turned out the box was cleverly designed to look like a briefcase, and you opened the top of the case in a similar manner. it's quite a neat little thing and part of a recent trend I have noticed among games, particularly those hunting for the elusive kickstarter money.

As you can see from the pictures above, the case contains all the marshall needs to track down his quarry - wipeaway notepad, wipeable pen, and a host of cards as the fugitive lays his trail and the marshall hunts him.
I've played the game a couple times so far, and I'm not yet convinced on it... it seems very easy to get caught early on. On the first turn, the marshall has a one in three chance of just catching the fugitive with a random guess. This seems incredibly high, and there is absolutely nothing the fugitive can do to narrow those odds, unless the rules are incorrect. He starts with card 1 2 and 3, and can lay one or two of the cards. If he lays one, it's a simple one in three guess. If he lays two, the marshall can guess multiple cards, so it's just which one is still in his hand, meaning it's still a  1 in 3 chance. According to the beginning of play guide, the fugitive doesn't draw cards on their first turn, which means the marshall knows they are only laying from their starting hand. if they could at least draw, they may draw something useless, but it would at least add uncertainty to the mix. Did they draw something they could reach? Did they sprint to reach a higher card, or did they sprint just to bluff? I think drawing one card would make this a hell of a different prospect. The faq even says it is ok for the fugitive to sprint to their first hideout, but if they are starting with just 3 cards, all reachable, there is no need to sprint, and the marhsall knows this... at least if you draw a card you MIGHT have gone somewhere you need to sprint to. I shall have to check and see if there is an online update to the rules, but the game does have promise... if the fugitive can escape the first turn or two, then you get a nice little cat and mouse run going on and it is quite a good puzzle. But on the flip side I've had games where I've put a card down, been guessed first time, game over in 30 seconds shuffle and re-deal.
The next game I am bringing up in this is my flatmates game, Tortuga. This is a great multiplayer mostly hidden team game that I have had a barrel of laughs with, and it is beautifully packaged in this lovely fake book. I almost want to put it on my bookshelf, instead of with the other games. I think my flatmate may object to this.

While I must leave Tortuga in the lounge with the other games, I have recently backed Deadwood from the same publisher, on kickstarter. Taking a good game with wonderful packaging and putting it into a theme I enjoy almost as much as pirates? Yes please! This one, being my own, will give me the dilemma on whether it goes with games or books, but I shall decide that when it eventually arrives - the one downside of kickstarter being the long lead time of waiting for the game you want.
Ironically when I mentioned to a group of friends that I had backed Deadwood the flatmate who owns Tortuga proudly pointed out that he had turned me to the aesthetics of nicely boxed games... true, he did show me Tortuga, and it is nice. But he's also the guy I know who minimises his games into MGC deck boxes, so he can fit them into a travel bag so he has a "go-bag" of games to take to friends... I think he has like 20 games in a bag barely big enough to put a six pack in. As much as I admire his diligence and efficiency, it seems odd for him to also claim respect for original packaging..
Tortuga is a team based game where up to 9 of you are voting on actions that your ship may take, but you may not all be on the same side. Depending on where you are on the ship depends on which actions you can take. So if you think the Captain is a frenchie then you can call a mutiny and strand them. Of course you yell "who's with me lads?" and turn around to see the rest of the crew smoking cigarettes and shrugging their shoulders and you think "ah shit I really misjudged this audience..." Next it's the captains turn and you surprise surprise find yourself marooned on the aforementioned island of Tortuga. Perhaps go try to join the crew of the other ship instead... Or would you rather be governor of Tortuga? Interesting possibilities.
Finally, the last game in my "interesting box" collection, was picked up precisely because of a juvenile streak of wanting to back a game that came in a furry box.

I've played this game a couple of times, I am hoping with a larger (and drunker) crowd it may be more of a hit, thus far it has seemed to get by on just plain silliness of the cards and combinations and the gimmicky packaging/perks/faq, rather than the gameplay itself. From the makers of the excellent exploding kittens, I'll be honest I had expected better. It does feel like they've cashed in on a gimmick, but at the same time it wasn't that much cash, I spent just as much money on a wooden box with a switch on it - if you turn it on, it switches itself off. That is the only thing it does. Again, a useless gimmick, but certainly amusing in social situations.
Finally, as much as I have shown an admiration for unusual packaging in this post, I am still a great lover of identically sized standard boxes... it makes a gaming shelf so much easier to organise...

Saturday, 10 March 2018

Witness me Brother! Witness me!

Da doof wagon is assembled.

Still a long way to go yet (wait for good weather, undercoat, paint, glue in the bits I'm painting separately, mainly the musicians... and oh yeah build and do the same for over half a dozen other, thankfully smaller, vehicles)

But to get the centrepiece of the project built, it feels a good milestone. So a quick photodump to celebrate.

I found some awesome plasticised I-beams that have proven very useful at making the whole vehicles look heavier and better supported compared to previous pictures that, while completely structurally sound, didn't look as strong, given how heavy the speakers are supposed to be. I am happen to have rectified this with purely decorative bits of plastic.

Monday, 5 March 2018

You Are Awaited In Valhalla!

So, with Double Trouble coming up this summer, I have been working on a little project. I had originally planned to keep this under wraps and then do a big reveal, but the centrepiece part of the big reveal is now, sadly, but probably for the best, not going to happen...

With that in mind, I figured a progress update wouldn't hurt.

I present, my battlewagon, da doof wagon!

The guitarist will be painted separately and glued in place later... I did have bigger plans for this guy but alas he shall have to suffice with being a painted model alone...

I still have much to do on the doof wagon. The speakers are well supported structurally, but they don't LOOK well supported for how much they are meant to weigh... so I shall have to add more, purely decorative struts, to make it look as strong as it is.

And of course, I still have a good amount of work to do at the back, bringing the speakers together and adding four drummers on the end...

Of course this entire project would have been even more monstrously difficult had I succeeded with phase one... I wanted the guitarist to have a functioning flamethrower!

I had a design I found online and was trying to scale down to a size I could build a battlewagon around... unfortunately making it smaller limits the size of the electronics, and in the end the motor I had just didn't have enough "oomph" to proper the gas that would have thrilled the crowds (and quite possibly exploded my battlewagon, in true orky fashion)

With how big a task building this doof wagon around nothing is proving to be, I am now very glad I didn't have to hide even more stuff inside, I'm not sure I could have made the thing any smaller than a baneblade!