Friday, January 12, 2018

Monster Highway

In brief
Wow!  We love this game.

AJ's full review
The game creators had this game on display at a board/video game convention, and they were very nice when they taught us the game. They've been to multiple other conventions, including PAX Unplugged.

The premise is simple: four cars build a path to their separate bunkers, then drive on that path, all while the monster chases you down. You roll two dice. If you roll a Road, you can build a tile of road. On Car, you can move ahead. On Monster, the monster moves at random. Rolling the dreaded Monster-Monster lets you move the monster anywhere. This makes Monster Highway the Mario Kart of board games.

Highly recommended for people who have fun with competition.

Rating: 10/10!

Shay's full review
We have played this game with the game's creators at several gaming conventions and have loved it every time.  Each time, the game was different and was as much fun as the first times we played it.

Players are trying to escape nuclear fallout by driving their car to their home base.  While you are trying to escape by building roads, you also have to avoid the irradiated monster and actions played by opponents.

Replay value is very high, based on our plays.  There is just the right combination of randomness from card drawing and rolls combined with offensive and defensive strategy to keep you coming back to play this again and again.

Rating: 9/10

The Kickstarter for this begins on January 15.  You can find more information at Monster Highway on BoardGameGeek.

Photos courtesy of One Day West.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Harry Potter Hogwarts Battle

In brief

This is one of our favorite games.  We like the cooperative format, deck building, and the Harry Potter theme.  Absolutely recommended.

AJ's full review

This is one of our favorite games. We were recommended the game by Tim at Games on Tape (thanks to him and his podcast) and we liked the idea up until he said that you face [NAME REMOVED] as a boss. I asked how that was possible and he answered that the game is a progressive deck-builder. This combined with the fact that it's co-op, and we went to Cloud City to pick it up.

Now, for those of you who aren't nerds (about 44.58427% of you), I'll explain the three terms that I just brought up. Co-op: This simply means that either everyone wins... or nobody does. Deck-builder: You start with a small deck of 10 - 12 cards, but the deck becomes stronger as you play. Progressive: This means that you play on, when you win one game, the next becomes playable, on and on until you face [NAME REMOVED].

You also get to play the books. The first game, you play Sorcerer's Stone and face Crabbe, Goyle, Draco, and Professor Quirrell. When you finish, you can open Book 2 and face [NAMES REMOVED]. You win if you defeat all the bad guys. You lose if enough cards are drawn.

There's not much to say that Shay won't. This game is great. There's just one thing.....  Quirrell is in Book 2!

Rating: 9. Out of 5!

Shay's full review

I had heard some not-so-great reviews about this game, so I was hesitant to buy it, but WOW!  We love this game.

It is a cooperative deck building game, which combines two of my favorite things with my great love of anything Harry Potter.  As with any deck building game, you start with very basic cards and you add to your deck in order to have better cards available each time you shuffle.

The differences in this game are what makes it great.  First, it is cooperative.  The players are working together to defeat the villains.  Second, the game is divided into years.  Each time you complete a year, you open a box inside the game and you get new cards and features to add to the game.  They correspond with what happened in each Harry Potter book.

Also, each player chooses a character to start and each of those characters has their own unique abilities.  I started out playing as Hermoine, but my favorite character from the books, Neville Longbottom, has a great ability that I just can't pass up.

This game works fine if you are going to play with people who aren't familiar with the Harry Potter series.  You might have some trouble with the spell pronunciations, but just consider that part of the fun.

Rating: 10 

You can find more information on BoardGameGeek and Amazon.

Photos courtesy of USAopoly.