Episode 258: The Spiel on Black Orchestra

 

Release Date: Apr. 3, 2017

Download:  Enhanced  | MP3

Running Time:   97 min.

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The shadow of war looms over Europe in 1936.

Hitler’s election and rise to power brings with it unprecedented aggression. Yet as the military and political machine prepare for conflict, there are those in Germany who understand he must be stopped at all costs. These conspirators were hunted by the Gestapo. Some were part of the military or intelligence service. Others were civilians. Collectively they were known as the Black Orchestra. They plotted to assassinate Hitler and overthrow the Nazi regime.

In the game, each player is a member of the Black Orchestra. Together you work toward your goal, trying to set in motion a series of events through daring actions that will lead to Hitler’s death. You must do this by gaining enough motivation and courage to go through with the deed without drawing too much suspicion to yourself and your compatriots.

This is not a task for the faint of heart. But if you succeed, you'll save millions of lives by ending the war early or perhaps before it begins in full!

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Episode 257: Double Play is Major Fun

 

Release Date: March 29, 2017

Download: PDF

Designer: Alvin Sanico

Publisher:  INversion Games

1-6 pl  10-20 min ages 10+  MSRP $10

 
 

 

Double Play is a set of word games with a twist.

Every card in the deck is actually two letters depending on the direction you play the card. This rotating letter system will turn some of your assumptions about word games on their heads. You have an amazing variety of letters available in every hand, which means there's almost always a better word just waiting to be discovered. It's up to you to find it!

Read on to learn more about Double Play and why it's Major Fun!

Written review continues after the break.

Episode 256: Tak is Major Fun

 

Release Date: Mar. 13, 2017

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Running Time:   51 min.

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"No one wins a dance. Why would I want to win anything other than a beautiful game?”

     - Bredon  The Wise Man's Fear  by Patrick Rothfuss

Tak comes to us from two beautiful and beautifully different minds.

First from writer Patrick Rothfuss. In his epic fantasy series The Kingkiller Chronicles, Kvothe, the protagonist, learns the game of Tak from a courtier named Bredon. The game becomes the basis for their friendship and the foundation for understanding Bredon's worldview.

Second from game designer James Ernest. Inspired by the novels, James brought Tak from the page to reality. But creating a game that is supposed to be on par with the likes of Chess or Go is no small task!

And yet Tak is just that. A game that feels universal, simple, elegant and accessible. A game that you can play anywhere and with anyone. A game that is beautiful because HOW you play matters as much as winning or losing.

And a game that is worthy both the Major Fun and Spiel of Approval Award!

Listen in to explore Tak - it's backstory, the game itself, and why we think it deserves an honored place on your table, too.

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Episode 255: Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft

 

Release Date: Mar. 1, 2017

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Running Time:   47 min.

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1885. A bomb explodes in the Houses of Parliament. A young laborer is caught nearby.

Mycroft Holmes is charged by the crown to prove his guilt. Unfortunately for Mycroft, his brother, Sherlock, has been hired to prove his innocence. Each brother has seven days to build the best case. May the best detective win!

Holmes: Sherlock & Mycroft is a set collecting card game. Cards represent major and minor characters from Doyle's novels. Place a token on a character to perform his or her special action, allowing you to collect evidence or earn investigation tokens in many different ways. Each day a new character is revealed, adding new options. At the end of the week, the player who has assembled the best sets of evidence will win the game.

Listen in to learn more about the game and why we think it has earned the Spiel of Approval Award!

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Episode 254: Imagine is Major Fun

 

Release Date: February 24, 2017

Download: PDF

Designer: Shotaro Nakashima

Publisher:  Gamewright

3-8 pl  20 min ages 10+  MSRP $15

 
 

 

Imagine is a party game where players use the language of symbols to communicate. Dozens of transparent cards with simple icons will cover the table. You will select and combine these cards, hoping someone in the group can solve your enigma using the clues you provide.

The key ingredient is, of course, imagination because you can layer the cards to create more complicated images or animate the cards to create a small scene or story.

Read on to learn why Imagine is an outstanding and innovative party game.

And definitely Major Fun!

Written review continues after the break.

Episode 253: Game of Trains is Major Fun

 

Release Date: Feb. 13, 2017

Download:  Enhanced  | MP3

Running Time:   36 min.

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You are the engineer of a futuristic train and you have a big problem. All of the rail cars attached to your engine are in the wrong order! The cars are arranged from high number to low. You can't leave the station until all the cars are arranged from low to high. The first engineer to get their train in the proper order will win the Game of Trains!

Game of Trains is a fast fun card game. The artwork speaks to geek culture with tons of nerdy genre references but the game itself is easy enough for your grandma to play and enjoy.

This makes the game accessible to a wide audience.

It also makes the game Major Fun!

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Episode 252: The Spiel on Hanamikoji

 

Release Date: Feb. 6, 2017

Download:  Enhanced  | MP3

Running Time:   57 min.

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Hanamikoji is a street in Kyoto renowned for its many geishas who perform at restaurants and tea houses. 

Hanamikoji is also a brilliant two player card game.

In the game, you are the proprietor of a restaurant, trying to hire talented geishas to come work in your establishment. You'll do so by collecting items the geishas use in their art, hoping to curry their favor and win the game.

The beauty of the game is its simplicity. Four simple actions combine in various ways to create surprising, challenging and fun decisions on every turn.

Tune in to learn why we think Hanamikoji is amazing enough to earn both the Spiel of Approval Award AND our highest honor as a Keeper.

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

Episode 251: Holiday Party

 

Release Date: Dec. 24, 2016

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Running Time:   210 min.

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Crotch chocolate, Mornington Crescent, bad jokes and The Ghost of Board Games Past...

Join our party of misfit nerds for a festive, freewheeling conversation spanning the wide world geekdom. Most of all, be ready to laugh!

Guests: Mark Smalley (Indianapolis, IN), Geir Harald Helgeid (Stavanger, Norway), Katherine Rosland (Stavanger, Norway), Darrell Ottery (Reading, UK), Daniel Jensen (Linkoping, Sweden), Mark Wilder (Chicago, IL), Ezra Denney, (Alameda, CA), Lucio Rodriguez (Riverside, CA), Beth Heile (Chicago, IL), John Knoerzer (Chicago, IL), Doug Richardson (Gresham, OR), Jay Bartelt (Chicago, IL), plus Francie Broadie (Indianapolis, IN)! 

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

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