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Saturday, December 26, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Pandemic

People everywhere are becoming deathly sick, epidemics continue to break out, and fatal diseases are spreading worldwide.  The world's only hope is a group of scientists, engineers, medics, and various operations personal to work together to save humanity.  In this 2 - 4 player co-op game the diseases are rapidly spreading faster by the minute and you and your disease control team must work together to either cure and/or eradicate all of the diseases in order to save mankind.  Today this is being performed in the internationally award winning game known as Pandemic.  As much as we love the expansions for Pandemic, this segment we are only playing and reviewing the base game and will save our thoughts about the expansions for a special segment down the road. 

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Mayored to the Mob

Today we returned to the awesome Redemption Alewerks for two of the people's breakfast poutines and delicious Brugge Crantastico's to play Machi Koro.  The brunch menu at Redemption Alewerks is strongly recommended!  We arrived at the opening time at 11:00, and they had very nice classic Christmas music playing, but after about an hour or so when more people arrived, the Christmas music was unfortunately replaced by hip-hop and No Doubt.  In the game of Machi Koro, you've just been elected the mayor of a small town that you are trying to build up into the largest city possible.  In the beginning, your town consists of a wheat field, a bakery, and a single die so it will undoubtably be a phenomenal feet to accomplish in order to fulfill the demands, and please the citizens of Machi Koro.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Time and Punishment

Today we returned to Sure Shot Coffee to immerse ourselves in their wonderful vanilla latte's and vanilla americano's to play Tides of Time.  Tides of Time is a small two player card drafting game still hot on the market as it just released at the beginning of August and made it's debut at GenCon.  Come with us as we return to a time of ancient civilization and monumental empires as they prosper and collapse through time.  From times long forgotten to times recently lost, civilizations will rise and fall as the tide of time carries them.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Kickstarter Review #1: Buy The Rights

This weeks segment is a special focus as we gathered at Redemption Alewerks with the creators of a current, hot Kickstarter game known as Buy the Rights.  This 3 to 10+ player movie-pitching party game is based on creating your own film and then pitching the idea to a producer who will then provide funds up to 20 million dollars to at least one or more players around him or her.  Do you like movies?  How about basking in the creativity of story-telling, on-going laughter from ridiculous, and hilarious film creation?  Read on to learn about this fun and unique party game!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Stone Age

On this segment we return to the tribal days of great trials and tribulations through survival to play Stone Age.  In this 2 - 4 player worker-placement game of strategy and dice rolling, you are trying to grow your tribe to be as sustainable and efficient as possible.  Ultimately this will reward you with more points as you progress throughout the game and whoever scores the most points by the end of the game, is the winner.  Join us as we gather what resources we can manage, hunt for food in the fields, and evolve our tribes the best that we can in order to survive the Stone Age.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Top 10 Stocking Stuffers for Christmas 2015!

Seasons Greetings everyone!  Hopefully everyone has had a wonderful Thanksgiving.  Since it is the day after, and no doubt people are already planning and possibly out and about doing their holiday shopping, I'm bringing you a very special segment today on my Top 10 Stocking Stuffer games for Christmas!  This is a recommended list that I have put together to carefully consider what has been, and is currently hot right now in the gaming market.  I've done my thorough research for this segment.  I've carefully considered box size, price range, popularity of the game from both past and present releases so I hope this list will be a useful preparation tool for you as Christmas is quickly approaching!  Read on to see my top ten recommended stocking stuffer games!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Keepin' it Qwirky in Fletcher Place

Today's brain game of choice is Qwirkle, and we returned to the awesome Calvin Fletchers Coffee Company where we thoroughly enjoyed more breakfast sandwiches and coffee!  Qwirkle is an abstract strategy game based on pattern building and hand management.  The idea is to create the longest row of blocks from a single attribute (either single shapes or a single color, but not both).  Players begin the game with six blocks.  The active player places a block with a single matching attribute on the table.  The next player adds more blocks adjacent to at least one previously played block.  All blocks must be played in a row and match without duplicates, either the color or shape of the previous block.  

Saturday, November 14, 2015

PentaCon 2015

I like to think that our blog is a tiny corner of the internet where we provide helpful information to other tabletop gamers and enthusiasts everywhere.  Hopefully this segment will be another one of those instances, because the most important thing is that the readers receive the truth.  Whenever a gaming convention is put on, there is supposed to be a sense of pride in the air.  There should be a feeling of confidence that the surrounding people really put in a lot of hard work and preparation to represent their city and state.  This convention ended up not being what we had expected at all.  Read on to learn about this unfortunate event.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

You Have Chosen...Wisely

Today we drove a little further out of our way to visit The Caffeinery in downtown Muncie to play Lost Cities.  Located off of Walnut St, the Caffeinery is upscale, but approachable and friendly.  In addition to their great coffee, their kindness also shined for a great overall experience.  The coffee is a little pricy, but you get what you pay for here.  It was definitely worth the drive to venture out and try a new coffee shop and we were both very pleased to see Muncie embracing a local coffee shop.  We really appreciated the service we received today from The Caffeinery and we would absolutely recommend them to anyone!  Lost Cities is an exploration, hand management/set collection, wager game with an archeology theme.  This version is the 2 player card game and it consists of a single deck of cards with a rank of 2 - 10 in 5 different locations in the world.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Betrayal at House on the Hill

  Happy Halloween Everyone!  

Light your candles, grab your crucifix, and stay close together because tonight, four brave souls will be lurking in the dark, dank hallways of a haunted mansion.  The floorboards are creaking and groaning under their feet, the light is swallowed by the dampened, dark corners of each room and the cold chill from the breath of the wind seeps through the cracks of the decrepit walls within this evil edifice.  Which one of us will turn against the others?  Will we survive the horrors within, or will the pain and suffering of the dark entities swallow us up? 

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Quoth the Raven...

We returned to Noble Coffee & Tea today to play a game from Smirk and Dagger Games known as Nevermore.  This is a 3 - 6 player card drafting, hand management, set collection game with multiple take-that mechanics, subtle deception, and cunning trickery.  The raven has its eye out for you and we have a couple new players that have joined us for today's dark and dreary October morning.  Which of us will transform into ravens and which ones will be victorious?  Out of the darkness, our fate will be revealed in the cards.  Read on to learn about Nevermore. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

A Dreadful Double Feature

This week we attended Books and Brews which was having Live Music Night and showing the classic horror film The Shining, all while serving free popcorn and Halloween themed drinks! You should check out their website for the remaining movie schedule because this is not the last time that they'll be showing horror films in October!  On this night, we are reviewing two games, the dark humor story-telling game known as Gloom and the ever popular social deduction, bluffing card game, One Night Ultimate Werewolf.  Now lets shake things up a bit with terror-inducing stories and wildly-hairy accusations with some craft beer, or Dracula's blood as it's known tonight.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Beers and Braaaains...

Today we returned to Redemption Alewerks in Fishers to play Zombie Dice.  Throughout the fall time, Redemption has added a pumpkin-spice flavor to their Reclamation vanilla porter which is fantastic!   Today however, I had the Schlafly Pumpkin Ale, and Claire had the New Day Johnny Chapman Cider, both of which were excellent and we highly recommend them!  On this segment, we are playing the role of the restless undead, and only hungry for one thing…braaaains!  Zombie Dice is a push-your-luck, dice rolling game in which you are trying to attain the most brains possible.  There's a problem though.  The living still want to keep their brains and they're armed with shotguns ready to defend themselves.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: D&D Castle Ravenloft

  Welcome to the October segments!  

Claire and I are big Halloween enthusiasts, and the segments for October will definitely be fun for us!  Steve is even in the Halloween spirit and has decided to dress up as well!  We're kicking off the October segments by providing you another home segment to play Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft.  As we've mentioned in the past, our monthly at home segments are designed for our big box games with lots of components.  Well, today is probably one of the best examples of these segments, because there is a lot inside of this box.  Venture further and read more.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Spotting New Places

Today we tried a new location in the Herron-Morton Place district of downtown Indy known as Thirsty Scholar.  It is located within the historic Penn Arts building which was built in the early 1920's, and still retains an early 20's european style.  They serve a variety of drinks such as coffee, tea, beer and wine, so it's our kind of place!  The barista's were courteous, but aloof.  The coffee had excellent foam and was well presented, but Claire's almond milk cappuccino was bitter.  We would like to revisit as we enjoyed the atmosphere and would like to sample their other offerings. 

Sunday, September 20, 2015

A Meepling We Will Go!

Today at Books and Brews, we're all meepled up, and everywhere to go!  Now a quick history lesson.  The world famous French city, Carcassonne was known for its imposing fortifications erected during the Antiquity and the Middle Ages.  Even today, this fortress surrounded by it's magnificent walls, still stands as one of the most unique French cities.  In this 2 - 5 player tile-placement game, players must develop the area around Carcassonne.  They will place their followers onto roads, into cities, monasteries and fields.  The players who make the most judicious placements will gain the points required to win the game.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Get Yer Geek On!

Look out fellow geeks, here it is!  Today we went to Sure Shot Coffee in Fishers to play Geek Out!  Between years of science-fiction film viewing, fantasy films, several years of childhood super hero shows, tabletop games and video game experience since 1983, we consider ourselves quite the geeks.  Well, this game will really test your geek knowledge to the absolute limits!  There's not a lot to this game in terms of rules and complexity.  It's a party and bidding trivia game with hundreds of geeky questions from five genres, Games (both tabletop and video), Fantasy, Comics, Sci-Fi, and miscellaneous/pop culture style questions.  These 5 categories will demand answers from your knowledge on books, games, movies, TV shows, franchises, and more. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Sheriff of Nottingham

Once again, another at home segment is upon us!  Tonight we are playing something absolutely blinding known as, Sheriff of Nottingham.  What's that you say mate?  The premise of our story?  Well, that lousy Prince John has finally gone too far!  It's close to impossible for a merchant to make a living anymore, being taxed as much as we are!  He's hired that greedy Sheriff of Nottingham to check everyone who comes through the front gate for "contraband" and keeping it for himself!  Read more to see how he's proving to be quite the caterpillar in our buttermilk.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Renaissance Intrigue and Battle

This week we stopped in again at Sure Shot Coffee in Fishers to battle it out with Condottiere.  The premise of Condottiere is that during the Renaissance period, Italy was divided into numerous independent city-states, sometimes friendly and sometimes hostile.  This is the era in which the Condottieri appear as leaders of mercenary armies who offered their services to the most powerful cities.  In Condottiere, you relive this incredible age, and represent a Condottiere trying to conquer the most famous cities in Italy.  However, you are not alone!  You must take into account the ambitions of the other Condottieri.  The strength of your army alone will not suffice.  You must use diplomacy if you want a chance at victory.  The goal in Condottiere is to conquer city-states, unite them, and create the most powerful kingdom in Italy.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Coup d'etawesome

This week we visited Calvin Fletchers Coffee Company in Fountain Square to play Coup.  Our experience was very nice.  The employees are very kind and attentive, and the beverages really hit the spot!  The environment was relaxed, art-centric and welcoming.  We very much enjoyed the service we received from Calvin Fletchers Coffee and look forward to returning again!  Today's awesome game of choice is Coup, the dystopian future, social deduction, player elimination game so get ready for a mix of deceitful, but also truthful allegations and backstabbery. 

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Who's the Boss?

Today we returned to the rustic, ski-lodge scenery of Mama Bears Bakery in Fishers to play Boss Monster.  Anyone who has played classic dungeon RPG games knows that the hero is the one and only individual who can save either the princess, or mankind, with his fortitude.  This game however is going to make us do the opposite.  In this dungeon building card game, you are the boss monster who is set out to lure the heroes into your dungeon and destroy them, taking their souls.  The methods in getting to this point will vary from game to game depending on the cards you draw from the room deck.  If you play your cards right, you can build an effective dungeon path to destroy every hero who enters, claiming each of their souls.  Whoever collects 10 souls first, is the winner. 

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: 7 Wonders

For this segment we are scheduled once again to play big box games at home with more components!  Tonight Ryan, Kayte and Rand join us to play the card drafting, set collection game, 7 Wonders.  In 7 Wonders you are the leader of one of the 7 great cities of the Ancient World.  It is up to you to gather resources, develop commercial routes, affirm your military supremacy, and build your city to evolve an architectural wonder which will transcend futures to come.  7 Wonders lasts three ages.  Just like other card drafting games, each player begins each turn by selecting a card from their hand and then passing the remaining cards to an adjacent player.  Then, like other card drafting games, all players will simultaneously reveal their cards, playing resources if needed, or collecting resources. 

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Gen Con 2015

This week we take a look at the four greatest days of gaming, Gen Con which is held in the Indianapolis Convention Center downtown.  It's like Christmas during the summer!  Today was the last day for Gen Con, but before I bid it farewell for another year, I'm going to share my thoughts about the experience.  One of the most fascinating things about Gen Con aside from thousands of tabletop games, is the massive volume of people that come from all over the world to be there.  Claire and I worked as volunteers this year and we met and spoke to people not only from all over the US, but from all over the world. 

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Ready ORE Not.....More Catan!

For today's segment we returned to Noble Coffee & Tea to play Rivals for Catan.  A few weeks back we did an at home segment to play The Settlers of Catan.  This version of Catan is a two player card game in which you are still building roads, settlements, and cities, but this time only with cards.  You also still gain resources such as wool, grain, brick, ore, lumber, and gold, but the approach is very different.  Each turn you will roll your dice, and one die will determine which resources you gain, and which actions or event cards are drawn.  

Sunday, July 19, 2015

More Gold, More Coffee, More Wins!

Today we have returned to Sure Shot coffee to play Citadels.  Once again, we have had another great experience at Sure Shot and would never shy away from inviting any new players to the table.  Citadels is a card game of bluffing, diplomacy, and city building for 2 - 8 players.  The purpose of this game is that you are a medieval ruler trying to build the largest city before your opponents can.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

A Sure Shot at Victory!

Today's segment is being played at the newly opened Sure Shot Coffee in downtown Fishers off of 116th st.  Sure Shot stemmed from what began as a small T-Shirt and skate shop known as Vardagen.  The environment is relaxed, welcoming, and fun.  Their staff are very friendly, respectful, attentive professionals who know how to make great coffee!  In the back of the building resides a small comfortable seating area as well as some tabletop games that they provide for their customers!  Claire and I have been very involved with Sure Shot Coffee so far.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: The Settlers of Catan

Once again we return to our monthly, at home segments to play larger games with more components.  It's one that nearly every gamer knows, The Settlers of Catan.  This game in my opinion has been one of the quintessential gateway games for people who are curious about strategic, euro board games.  It was released way back in 1995, and that makes me feel old.  The Settlers of Catan was my first real introduction to TableTop gaming back when I was in college at Taylor University.  

Sunday, June 28, 2015

On Any Forbidden Sunday

On this segment we returned to Books & Brews to play Forbidden Island and Forbidden Desert, our first double feature!  As always, we had another great experience at Books & Brews.  Both of these games are cooperative and Forbidden Island is the more lenient of the two.  The idea behind Forbidden Island is that you and your colleagues are trying to get off of an evil Island that is gradually sinking and plotting to drown all of you.   

Sunday, June 21, 2015

...We've Got Fun and Games (obviously).

Today we visited Mama Bear's Bakery in Geist/Fishers for cinnamon rolls and coffee.  The cafe has a very welcoming feel to it.  Between the wood carvings, the long wooden beams across the ceiling, and forest art, this cafe has a ski-lodge feel to it, which I really like.  There's also a variety of breakfast food and lunch sandwiches.  The employees seem nice and I could see us returning here again.  The game of choice for today was Welcome to the Dungeon.  The game has a push your luck element,

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Playing With Fireworks While Drinking Mead.

On Today's segment Claire and I hit the New Day Meadery in fountain square.  We've been to New Day several times and have always enjoyed their mead and atmosphere.  For the most part their staff seem pretty respectful, and they have a monthly rotating art gallery which is really nice.  New Day has their own selection of board games for their customers, but as usual we brought in one of our own games to review. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Thunderstone

Today for Boards and Brews it has been one month since our first at home segment, which means it’s time for our next at home segment.  Tonight we played a more advanced deck builder, Thunderstone.  Claire and I really love this game and understandably so.  The best way to describe Thunderstone is D&D meets Dominion.  For our previous at home segment we did it on Dominion and it’s crazy how much this game is like Dominion.  We don’t own as many expansions of Thunderstone because it seems Dominion has always been the bigger hit within most gaming groups.  This segment will just be us playing the original base game of Thunderstone.  

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Summon Me Some Coffee!

On this segment of Boards & Brews we returned to Noble Coffee & Tea to play Summoner Wars.  Essentially, Summoner Wars is Dungeons & Dragons meets Chess.  There are a number of mechanics that are different, but there are also multiple methods and approaches that are similar during gameplay.  The end goal of the game is to destroy the other opponents summoner.  There are six phases per turn, and during these phases the players will draw cards, summon more units, play event cards, move their factions to the desired locations on the board, attack, and then build up their magic piles for the next round.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

The Evil Wizard Took My Beer!!

On this segment we return to Books & Brews to review a fast-paced, light strategy, two player game known as Dragonheart.  The premise of this game is that an evil wizard has placed the great dragon, the protector of the realm, into a petrified slumber, and it's fiery breath locked away in a ruby jewel known as the Dragonheart.  With the land's guardian imprisoned, trolls and fire dragons run amuck, barely held in check by brave knights and canny huntresses.  Two different roles are taken on by both players.  You can either be a disciple of the great dragon, and focus your skills on freeing him, or as a minion of the evil wizard, you can see to it that the dragon sleeps forever.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Say Anything (Not the 80's Flick)

Today we took a break from our usual strategic segments to play a party game. Everyone who lived and was conscious during the 80's, probably knows about the classic John Cusack film, Say Anything.  This post will not be about that awesome film!  Today we visited Books and Brews off of 96th St.  Books and Brews specializes in craft beers, appetizers, sandwiches, and their own bookstore!  I was proud to see they also have a working original NES from 1985 for retro video game nights.  Their staff were conscientious, respectful and we really enjoyed coming in to play board games!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Boards & Brews at Home: Dominion

This is the first segment we are doing at home.  The idea behind doing this is that it's easier to play and review big box games from home.  Typically we play smaller games in public places for the convenience and security of limited components.  However, the segments at home will allow us to demonstrate our larger games for the blog.  For this first segment at home we're playing the deck-building game that started it all known as Dominion.  

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Libraries, Gold, and Coffee

This week with boards & brews, we returned to Noble Coffee & Tea to build our libraries with the most books possible.  Biblios is Greek for book.  The premise of this game is that you are abbots in a monastery during the medieval era collecting various books, manuscripts, scrolls and supplies to create the greatest library in all of Europe.  The game has two phases, the gift phase and the auction phase.  During the gift phase, we go around the table and every player allocates a set of cards from the draw pile depending on the number of players in the game.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Winemaking fun, TableTop style

Today on Boards and Brews, Claire and I visited Goose the Market off of Delaware St. in downtown Indianapolis. In the lower level of their building, resides Enoteca, which was a perfect location to play Viticulture.  It's not common for us to bring in a game with so many components into a public establishment, but we could not pass this opportunity up.  Goose the Market provided us an excellent overall experience!  Their staff were very accommodating and respectful, the environment was very nice, the selection of wines, craft beers, hard ciders was widespread and offered a great variety to choose from! 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Who's Yer Con 2015

This week for boards & brews Claire and I attended Who's Yer Con which was held at the Wyndham West Hotel located on the southwest side of Indianapolis.  This convention offered game stores, a game library, cosplay, comics, and workshops for FREE.  We played several new games this weekend so read on to learn more about this wonderful convention.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

International TableTop Day 2015

Today we celebrated International TableTop day at Redemption Alewerks in Fishers off of 96th Street!  Claire and I don't drink too often, but when we do....we play tabletop games!   This was a great place to game!  We brought in our own games, but Redemption Alewerks is also equipped with their own board games and provide comfortable lounging for their customers. Read on to learn more about today's segment!

Saturday, April 4, 2015

A Break from Tradition to Try Something New

This week we switched it up, but kept things thematic by going to the Sushi Bar in Broad Ripple to play SushiGO!
The sushi and green tea was great, but the service was horrible.  The environment was nice, but there was just no passion for decent customer service or respect towards others.  We also had a very difficult time finding anywhere to park that wasn't a tow away zone.  This was our first and last time visiting this restaurant. 

Sunday, March 29, 2015

A Path of Decisions

Once again my wife and I showed up to Noble Coffee & Tea for our weekly gaming.  This week we brought in the oriental path strategy game, Tsuro.
Tsuro is a 2 - 8 player tile-placement, abstract-strategy path game consisting of each player placing down tiles and following the paths specified on the tiles, trying to avoid running into walls or each other.  The idea is that you want your player token to last as long as possible on the board.  It offers up very simple, very fun, strategic planning along with an uncertainty of where you may end up near the end.  Claire and I played three rounds of Tsuro today, and one of those rounds proved to be one of the most unique rounds that we've ever played.