For the last two years, I’ve written one article about games every week. While I haven’t always stuck to my schedule, the 132 reviews, analysis and strategy guides currently on my blog show that I haven’t been slacking off! But it has become harder for me to keep up that pace. As I juggle burn out and employment issues, I’ve decided to take a more relaxed approach from now on. I’ll still write, but not as often.
I hope you still have as much fun reading my articles as I do writing them. We’ll see each other! Just a little less frequently.
There are few designers whose sense of aesthetics is so diametrically opposed to mine as Stefan Feld. Where I prefer chatter, surprise and laughter, he keeps his players distant and staring down into the board. He makes seemingly dull, brown games of efficiency which bore me to tears. And yet, he’s a talented designer. TheCastles of Burgundy is one of the two games of his I’ve ever liked and, perhaps, also his best.
Ark Nova‘s scoring is a strange one. We count two sets of points, each from a different end of the board. When their markers meet, the remaining players take an extra turn and then the game ends. This unusual setup, as well as the final calculation involving “target numbers” left many baffled, giving ground to all sorts of misconceptions and theories. But, surprising even myself, these twists are a disguise for one of the simplest scoring mechanisms.
Like many fans of Terraforming Mars, I was eager to play Ark Nova. Building a zoo through cards and unique projects seemed fun, and it indeed was! Featuring a great selection mechanism, a board to build in and a massive deck, it has all the elements for a game I would like. Sadly, a lack of development and a misguided sense of balance forced me to lower my expectations.
Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan is one of the best and most accessible wargames in the market. However, that doesn’t mean we’ll do well in our first try! If we are new to the genre, we might struggle to keep our samurai in place. In order to make that transition easier, I have written this beginner strategy guide, with the best tips to take over Japan.