- Rick's Rec Room
Kingdom Builder: building a following
Donald X. Vaccarino has been thrust into the forefront of the tabletop gaming community as a designer and that stature is on the verge of getting even larger.
Vaccarino designed the hugely successful Dominion from Rio Grande Games, which won the 2009 Spiel des Jahres Award as game of the year. That award is to game designers what the Oscar is to people in the film business.
Origins haven for serious tabletop gamers
Today marks the start of the Origins Game Fair excursion here to find the latest news, sample games as well as work for one of the top companies on the planet.
Origins, along with GenCon in August, is one of the premier places for devotees of tabletop gaming to gather to get in games, sample new and existing product and have contact with some of the industry leaders.
Stock car racing gets championship treatment
Let’s get this out of the way right at the drop of the green flag – auto racing is one of the most difficult of all sports to simulate.
Nightfall ventures into Blood Country
Nightfall has always been one of my favorite card building games because it has the most player interaction and the best theme.
Fortunately the game just continues to get better, as has been proven by the most recent expansion, Blood Country, and by the first bit of news from next month’s expansion, The Coldest War.
Thunderstone expands with Heart of Doom
Thunderstone, though one of the earliest games in the deck building series, hasn’t lost any steam at all through the recent release of the game’s fifth expansion, Heart of Doom.
Heart of Doom adds well over 200 cards to add to the stockpile of options players have when adventuring with Thunderstone. There are a couple of new rules as well. But this expansion, more than anything else, feels like an ending of sorts to this first section of what I’m sure will be a continuing saga.
Catan thrives in 2-player game
There has always been just one downside to the tremendously popular board game The Settlers of Catan and that is that it just doesn’t play well with two players.
In 1996, Mayfair Games, publishers of Settlers, tried to correct this by releasing the Settlers Card Game, which tried to emulate the board game with a card-driven variant strictly for two players. The game was very successful and spawned several expansions.
Panic on the rise with The Wizard's Tower
Castle Panic is the best co-operative board game I’ve yet played, especially in terms of creating the need to work in tandem and creating real tension.
For those who don’t know of the game, it puts the gamers inside a castle trying to withstand an onslaught of monsters bent on its destruction. Through an ingenious system of random monster movement and appearance together with a variety of abilities, there is no easy way for the gamers to survive. In fact, my experience has been that more than half the time they don’t.
Eaten by Zombies gives fresh deck building experience
Since Dominion proved to be such a popular game, deck building as a genre has been created and is ever expanding. The challenge has been for game creators to come up with something fresh that would make the game stand out among the others.
One game that has succeeded on all counts is Eaten By Zombies by Mayday Games. The game is designed by Max Holiday. The idea is to be the last person not to be gobbled up by a hoard of rampaging zombies. The game is designed so that avoiding that eventuality is very difficult and even a three- or four-player game will be over without going on a long time.
Xtra Innings takes gamers into every pitch
Most baseball tabletop games on the market are tied to recreating players, teams and seasons from the past. They try to replicate the real-life abilities of those players and bring them to life for the gamer.
Xtra Innings takes a different strategy by focusing on just that, the strategy of the sport of baseball in a one-on-one format within the context of a card game.
Racing game throws Curves at genre
Dicey Curves is a game designed by Matt Worden that mines a lot of new territory when it comes to auto racing games.
The game is also marketed by Worden and distributed through The Game Crafter, a site where new designers without the backing of a large company can get their creations published.
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