Fire Secrets (1978)

Information
Category
Mechanic Dice Rolling
Storytelling
Description A wargame simulating the German drive to capture Leningrad. It requires two players, with one player controlling the German and German-allied (Rumanian, Finnish, etc.) forces and the other controlling the various Soviet forces: regular troops, militia divisions,and Guards formations. Several periods and armies are covered including the Greek wars and the Punic wars. Match the two dice to a square on your bingo board, then mark that square with a mouse. Army lists are pre-made and are only marginally customizable.
Comments
Even for a kid's game this mess of a ruleset is a complete failure. You can win as the Soviet and feel as though you have been slaughtered or lose and the German and feel quite dominant. Unfortunately it is out of print.


Elm Party Golf (1993)

Information
Category Card Game
Abstract Strategy
Educational
Dice
Mechanic Dice Rolling
Hand Management
Pick-up and Deliver
Description According to Sid Sacksons "A Gamut of Games": Ottocento is a Tarot game for 4 players which comes from Bologna. Correct or unchallenged responses earn a card. Each Glory card (points) requires that a Quest be accomplished.
Comments
Unfortunately, this game has too much randomness for it to really work. My favorite cult so far is "The Children of Michael.J"! A cool game that allows no retreats! It is essential though to act out a bit as this is part of the fun.
Possibly the tarot game with the most baroque scoring.
Too complex for a game that should be fast and fun.
Funny, but not as a game. Resolutions instead of giving Big G to the Iraqi's? We take our Old Ones seriously. Granted, it never claims to be anything else. Oh boy, were here aall night.). You can win by knocking out all of your opponents cultists or gaining enough "Fuggly" points to take out the diety when the stars are aligned with you.


Head Hunter (1988)

Information
Category
Mechanic Set Collection
Description From the box:- All your favorite neighbors characters will come alive when you create your own Neighbors story as you move around the board. Rules and the Meckel Map. If not, its still a wacky soap opera game all the family can enjoy. Included are all the parts you need to field either a Luther, a Ludwig, or a Lothar. Player with the most points at the end wins. The counters have also been cleaned up and overall this edition has quite a bit of visual appeal. This game is very complex but is a great simulation of ACW tactics.
Comments
The pieces are too big for the spots on the board.
Great for solo play. Why would you need a special die to determine randomness in a CARD GAME?
Boring Pseudo Coop game. The impression is that sometimes dice and cards work agaisnt the players, and they can't do nothing to avoid defeat. Tense and excellent strategy.


Hearts Around (1972)

Information
Category Wargame
Mechanic Simultaneous Action Selection
Description Essentially a timed Bible trivia game with questions that a high school kid who attended a Christian school could answer. There can be two players or teams of players, along with one quizmaster.
Comments
Another prize in my quest to acquire the entire collection of Metagaming Microgames.
Really looking forward to this as it puts the war's military-political-geographical-psychological aspects into one integrated light. Sounds interesting! When we really wanted Sci-fi, we broke out Starship Troopers. Cool plastic tanks, though! Read my for more details. 2. That way no game is going to play the same way twice.
Seems to be a rip-off of Catan. First impression is that this will be a playable Vietnam game with a very historical "feel," and that players' time will be spent fighting the war, not the game system. Some memory and 'press-your-luck' as to when you should deposit your nuts. The card chits are very difficult to deal with. Maybe time will blunt the joy, but as of now, one of my favored kid's games. Most importantly, I found Hearts and Minds fun and challenging to play. I need to see if the game will still be good after repeated play. As others have commented, the map is too small, with important details tending to get lost under piles of counters. The artwork is plain but functional. But you also can't afford to lose South-Vietnamese troops, because those losses can precipitate a collapse of the SVN government, which is a big headache. A backdrop of subtle side-wars rage inside Laos & Cambodia. I like the board though, and also the compact box is a plus. Hearts and Minds looks like it might have a place at the table. I look forward to playing this again, if I can find someone to play it with who is willing to persevere through the (at-first) overwhelming tangle of variables and front-less, area-control nature of the war. It's a tough game where the side that gets behind will probably be knocked out of the war in short order. In fact, the amount of immediacy and the preciseness of ops is something that Hearts and Minds seem to share with Twilight Struggle, and it's great. It's definitely not as interesting or nuanced as Hannibal is in that department, but it's also a lot simpler and shorter. I also like that the campaigns, if called in the same year but in different regions, make the player balance between offence and defense often using RPs from the same card play. Update: After a third play, I'm at a loss. Literally. I keep losing the game, badly. There is some meat on the bones of this game to be sure. Playing time seems to not *quite* be in the sweet spot of 3 hours (which is about what is easy for me to do on a weeknight these days), but '65-'72 should be doable in 4-ish. In the meantime, I am rating this quite high after my initial introduction as I have not been as intrigued with a new game since I first played UKC. Plus, sensible auto-victory thresholds are provided, which is good. Clearly drew some inspiration from the classic VG monster game Vietnam, of which I am a fan. A lot of game in a small package. Nice rules. Asymmetric sides. But initial impressions were very good and I am much more optimistic than usual on this one.
Very good theme with a simple (by wargame standards) rule-set. I was such a game toy geek.


Op (2007)

Information
Category Wargame
Dice
Humor
Card Game
Mechanic Dice Rolling
Hex-and-Counter
Description This is the second Deluxe Advanced Squad Leader module, with larger map hexes to allow for miniature play, or just to spread out the counters more. Players are dealt a secret recipe card and venture out into the shuk--or market--to collect the ingredients they need, like meat, potatoes, eggs and spices. All players gets 10 red and 10 blue cards, the game conductor get these cards too, he plays like all other players. But don't forget your chevra!
Comments
This game came unpunched, to be fair the description did state this. This game hits exactly my sweet spot. One of my favorites!! I'd rather play Werewolves. Hopefully GMT will succeed in pleasing me while I descent in the darks of wargaming. They feel very different, with a low counter density and lots of movement in the former, while Galicia is a slugfest between glass-jawed giants.
Played Galician battle of 1914. I'm normally not a fan of chit draw games, but it works here because of the limited movement and limited attacks. The bad news is, the cards require between 1 and 4 ingredients. And I love how both forces roll for casualties, not for damage dealt. Command chit pull system 2. You chose spells from four decks number 1-4 that add up to 10. The artwork is beautiful (but slightly different between the English and French/German version). Haven't played the Marne yet. By the way, the meaning of the spells is not always an exact translation between the three languages.
One solo play + one full game (both ypres), some nice mechanics, but maybe a bit too simple CRT and some supply issues.
This game sucks.


Quirks Expansion

Information
Category Educational
Card Game
Wargame
Fantasy
Mechanic Acting
Memory
Description From the introduction:
Comments
This game works well mechanically and is perfectly harmless, but it has no real "hook" that would make you want to play it more than once. But kind of fun for a "spin'n'move".
[Played once] Simultaneous action selection keeps the game short (as it should be), but also devoid of strategy (you just try some guesswork and hope to be favoured by what actions the opponents choose).
Klasszikus partyjáték Játszási szám: több, mint 50 Amióta megvan: kb.
Ebay. 2004


How Home (1997)

Information
Category Children's Game
Wargame
Abstract Strategy
Party Game
Mechanic Worker Placement
Description A children's party game (presumably a birthday party) with a unifying theme (safari) and a loose deduction element, a la adult How to Host a Murder parties. After two minutes, everybody gets his/her neighbor's letters, this way everybody has the same chance. Pieces move in any orthogonal or diagonal direction one space, or over an unbroken line of pieces of any shape or color, provided it lands on its own color. Full rules and data cards for fielding the exo-armors, fighters and warships of Jupiter, Earth and Mercury;
Comments
Fun with kids.
Beautifully made. Light years beyond Tic-Tac-Toe.
Russian dolls meets Tic-Tac-Toe. With some coaching, my sons can play it pretty well. Got a bit of strategy to it.


Havoc Game (2004)

Information
Category Educational
Mechanic Pattern Recognition
Description This self-correcting game reinforces spelling skills from primary to intermediate grades.
Comments
Great push you luck game. Simple to learn, great to play ftf or solitaire, fast and furious. Fun game, though. Hoping to see the designer take the intensity into the '42 night surfact actions. Hot stuff! Well, the designer figured a way and it seems to work pretty well. But this is no Monopoly! Good stuff! The push-your-luck mechanism is really nice! The game has wooden bits and though it shows its age (in components quality, not wear!), the game is nicely playable with 2-4 players and I enjoyed it! This is a very subtle strategy game that plays 2-5, but seems to work exceptionally well for 2-3 players. It's a very accessible game that has easy gameplay but also requires some decent strategy. A very overlooked title.


Monopoly Parlor Polar (2004)

Information
Category Party Game
Mechanic Co-operative Play
Roll and Move
Simultaneous Action Selection
Description Basic trivia game with questions in the arts, geography and history. 1650 more Questions & Answers for use with Trivial Pursuit... The wild game of moos, meows, and more! Each figure (unit) represents a Mutant or Robot. Here - in this box - are 1,650 additional Q&A;'s, color-coded for play with Trivial Pursuit (and other similar games of trivia). In Snorta each player is given a plastic farm animal (cute cartoonishly-designed ones by John Kovalic). The Sentinel Robots and eighteen named Mutants are described by hit points, abilities, and three special powers.
Comments
I played this once with the games authors in a classy restaurant in Melbourne. I realized I didn't know the right people to play this game with. It is very diificult to remember everybody and just when you think you have someone throws a card down on you and you blank out. Ever.


The Forma (2004)

Information
Category Wargame
Mechanic Area Movement
Pattern Recognition
Description Part of the Star Fleet Battles Captain's Edition line. Mythmatical Battles is a dueling card game for two players or two teams.
Comments
Quite deep 18xx for the shorter playtime it requires.
Really interesting map and companies. Adds a couple of minors and a big public railroad to the basic 1830 formula.The train rush is described as 'sick' and 'unbearable' and 'broken', so I must own this. Single company (may be) nationalized. Le point fort reste le système très original pour 3 pages de règles et une situation stratégique très intéressante. There is a ridiculous amount and over abundance of each kind of token....much more than what is needed to play.
Earlier version in good condition. Best using an oversized map. One minute you think your doing well, another you want to kill yourself for being such an idiot.
The "teacher" in me caved and bought this game to help my son memorize his times tables.

Data from BoardGameGeek, mashed up by Leonard Richardson. Logo by Beth Lerman.

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