Episode 77: Paradise Lost

77: Paradise Lost

Release Date: April 27, 2009

Running Time: 114 min.

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Letter perfect. We build ancient monuments and wonders to impress the King in Utopia and spell our way Boggle-style through hedge rows in Amuse Amaze.

News & Notes: Small World, Scary Tales, Kingsburg: To Forge A Realm
The List: Utopia, Amuse Amaze
Back Shelf Spotlight: 
Earthquake, Probe

Truckloads of Goober:  The Perfect Storm
Game Sommelier:  5 games for people planning their own utopian society
Mail Bag: Shanghaien, Fische Fluppen Frikadellen, Video tour of the padded cell

Complete Show Notes continue after the break.

 News & Notes

Small World  Official Site | BGG

Players vie for conquest and control of a world that is simply too small to accommodate them all. A fantasy follow up to an early title, Vinci.

Scary Tales   BGG

A new series of 2-player games pitting common fairy tale characters against each other. Each character comes with it's own unique deck and a single unique-die that is used in combination with the common dice in the game. To win, a player needs to obtain seven relics, which give you special abilities. First decks are Little Red vs Pinocchio.

Kingsburg: To Forge a Realm  Official Site | BGG

Five modular expansions you can mix and match to suit your tastes, including new buildings, 20 characters, 20 events, and new ways to obtain soldiers.

The List

Utopia Official Site | BGG

Welcome princes from Ancient civilizations. With their aid build monuments and wonders to impress the King and gain prestige.

Amuse Amaze Official Site | BGG

INteresting synthesis of word and board game. Be the first to collect 2-4 trophy cards and escape the labyrinth by spelling words to move.

Back Shelf Spotlight

Earthquake  BGG 

Play sets of cards and  special cards to score points. Use the dreaded Earthquake to keep opponents from gaining when you do. First of several light party-style non-collectible card games from the makers of Magic: the Gathering.

Probe BGG 

Four way hangman with a fun bluffing element.

SPONSOR LINKS - Perplext/Gateplay

See-Quence iTunes App Store

Find the hidden pattern among the stones in 60 seconds!

Clockwize iTunes App Store

A Stop all the clocks to show the same time in a minute or less!

Truckloads of Goober

Perfect Storm BGG

Print and play goober! Rotate and flip four 9-sided tiles and take readings, trying to form the largest tornado-spewing storm you can.

The Game Sommelier

The challenge: five games for settlers of a utopian community that help them build their society.

Thebes -   BGG | Official Site

Robo Rally -  BGG | Official Site

Lord of the Rings -  BGG | Official Site

Hare & Tortoise -  BGG | Official Site

Senet -  BGG

New Challenge: 5 games to fit each of the 5 Star Trek Captains.

Donors - Pledge Drive 2009

Thanks to the following new donors:

Eric "Decker of Ents" Summerer

Riley "Ticket to Danger" Rodriguez

Scott "Storm of Steel" Udell

Eric "Z-Deck" Selander

Marcus "Grand Duke of Geshenkt" Brissman

Shelly "Not Dead Yet" Fowler

Gergory "Word Nerd" Chandler

Thanks also to repeat donors:

Simon "The Ziggurat" Wilcock

Stephen "Prince of Pitchcar" Donohue

Mail Bag

Kristof "Funkenschlager" Tersago told us about Fische Fluppen Frikadellen another game that is played at several tables at the same time. He also mentioned a cool method for choosing a game - making a deck of custom cards with a card for every game in your collection.

David McCarson wrote in to remind Dave about Shanghaien a cool looking pirate game with dice!


Music credits (courtesy of Ioda Promonet) include:

Martin Gordon - "A Portion of Paradise" - buy the mp3

Lobster Newberg - "Lost" - buy the mp3

Superunloader - "The Maze" - buy the mp3


I'm sure there are some goofs in there somewhere. Let us know if (when?) you find one!


That's word enthusiast to you, mac (grin). Ah well, I suppose I was kind of asking for that. (Gregory "Ys" had occurred to me but I've unfortunately not played that title yet.) Stacked up against those other eight nicknames though, I have the strange sense of sitting a table playing The Great Dalmuti -and not doing particularly well.

Sorry to hear about that lost pair o' dice, by the way; Dave must be upset. Sure they didn't just roll under the table? (Well, somebody had to say it.)

AmuseAmaze sounds great, by the way.

But nerd is a badge of honor in our little clan, isn't it?

Keep in mind, that the fabled "Goal die" of Spiel and Rat Bastard lore comes from the game Word Nerd, too...

Not so bad after all, eh? :)

And since your puns just keep on a-rollin', that nickname is sure to stick.

I haven't really bought enough games to own the entirey of The Spiel (we're getting there though...) more likely probably just Dave...wait for it...

I'm not including Dave's personaly collections of games and dice and other Goober (or Roberta!) just Dave the man, the trumpet player and the co-host. While Dave himself may say that he himself isn't worth much...you can tell that to the room full of laundry my SO has to get done some unfortunate upcomming weekend.

I say only Dave because along with Stephen comes The Padded Cell, meaning lots of recording equipment I simply can't afford. Plus we could just use random listeners, wives, game designers or pre-recorded tracks to replace Dave. Or just a whole lot of dice rolling sound effects...and blooper reels.

I mean that with love Dave.

Especially since I'm the same type of blooper dropping, poorly spelling, goober loving, bald headed, disc tossing kind of dorky nerd as Dave "Mustard Eye" Colson.

Also the entire system was based on the idea that I wanted to find out a cool method of donating to The Spiel based on some wacky formula.  The kind of formula that wins connection contests.  My idea was something like "Hey! I could donate X amount for deals I've found on games through The Spiel and their sponsors!" then I thought "wait a minute...I wouldn't have *had* (I, like Dave, just HAVE to have these things sometimes) to buy a lot of these games if The Spiel hadn't introduced me to them! I should deduct amount Y for each of those!"

And when I was done my donation was going to be squarely in the red. Which I'm sure is a point of pride for these two hooligans. But alas, I will still be donating shortly...I just have to make sure I pay my college within the next two weeks or they don't let me graduate. I really need to hurry up and get that out of the way...I have more games to buy!


Will A. Carpenter


Still in the middle of the show, but just a few comments:

- I agree that the board is very pretty, but I (and many) think that some of the monuments are too similar to easily distinguish from each other. I think it's the Egyptian and Babylonian ones?

- I didn't understand what you meant about fiddling with turn order: sure, one can change the order for next turn, but did you mean you can do it on the same turn? It sounded like your example was that the player in 3rd position did something do go 2nd instead? I don't think that's right -- you do your actions on your turn in the order tokens have on the score track. If 3rd player gains VP and moves ahead of 2nd, they don't play again this round.

- It's not stated, but I'd assume the tie breaker for winning the game is the same as the tie breaker for turn order: whoever got to that VP first is ahead, and wins.

Hey Snoozefest!

I like your idea about using the turn order tie break for the end game tie break.

As far as changing turn order in the middle of a turn  - the rules say:  "When a player's action changes the score track, the order of play may change. The next to play is the player who is currently highest on the score track, of those who have not yet had a turn." Even though it dosen't come right out and say it, I think that the section in italics is only applicable if there is a possibility that a player's action could immediately affect opponents who have not yet taken thier turn during the current game round. In my example, I did not mean to insinuate that a player would ever get more than one turn per game round. I could be totally full of crap about this rule - it would not be the first time!


P.S. Dave finally posts a comment!!!!!! I'll try not to let it happen again.

The BGG deck of custom cards is a neat little resource but I am far too lazy to do the whole print and play thing. Too fiddly.

(I'd happily pay someone to print out and mount the Tigris and Euphrates two player map for me)

Better for an EdgeGeek such as myself - and worth pointing out for other Spielers who may have missed it - is the BGG iPhone application. It links in with your main geek account and allows you to list all the games, in your collection, on your phone and subset them by number of players / game weight / duration etc.

It also has the facility to chose a random game, for you to play, based on the criteria you set (eg I only have two players and 30 minutes - whta games do I have ?). This is great given that my collection is spread around five different locations within the castle and not visible from my gaming table. And is a lot quicker than getting out a deck of cards and having to subset them myself.

You can also register plays directly from your iPhone which is neat, too.

Oh, and it is free, which is a bonus in these days of credit crunchiness.

I can see how having a portable  electronic version of one's collection would be very handy, for sure. That said, logging everything into BGG still takes quite an effort if your collection is of any size at all. Not sure you qualify as lazy if you have gone to the trouble of doing that!

Like JMoody (below), I think it would be cool to have a physical mini-representation of the collection. Just this week, when pitching a game class to a local contuining education organization, it would have been nifty to plonk down a binder for them to flip through with all my games on display at once. Instead, I carted into two suitcases full of games and did show and tell.

Well I only have 133 games in my collection so logging them into BGG is no big deal - and actually I think I only had around 50 when I started to put them in so it's been a gradual task.

Probably not something you uber-collectors would want to do so late in the day :-)

I envy you all your adventurous friends! I usually have to be the game ambassador, taking titles out to my friends who don't normally pursue this sort of thing and seeing what works for them. I think if I were to hit them with my whole collection at them at once, small as it may be by Spiel standards (180ish at last count and I've promised myself to stop at 200), they'd either glaze over completely or run like rabbits. Nothing's as compelling as the games themselves- Metropolys for example  had them at the box art- but I've learned the hard way that it's usually best to have one or two titles, three at the outside, to offer on any single visit or the confusion takes up a lot of potential play time. Of course, they don't recognize some newer titles as readily as the Spiel audience; for the most part I'm the first exposure they've gotten to these games. I have found it useful to sort things out on the shelf by number of players and amount of time required.

Would your game collection information even fit in a single binder anymore (grin)?

I think I like the idea of the cards for showing others what you have in your collection. I haven't checked on size, but if they fit in those old baseball sleeve pages I have I could make a small folder for someone to flip through.