Boardgames To GoAuthor: Mark Johnson
19 Nov 2018

Boardgames To Go

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Mark Johnson's occasional & opinionated podcast about family strategy boardgames

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    Boardgames To Go 185 - Essen Anticipation 2018

    Opener: Reef

    Closers: Games with Heidelberg, such as Thurn & Taxis, Web of Power, or Wallenstein (what did I forget?)







    The famous Spiel game fair in Essen, Germany starts later this week. I won't be there, but that's nothing new. Like most of us, I window-shop this gathering from afar, and participate vicariously via blogs, videos, and (maybe most of all) getting excited for its arrival. Just over a week ago I commented on Twitter that I hadn't looked at the list of games at all. That was echoed by some who thought I might be "over" the buzz and hype of Essen.

    I'm not. Not really.

    True, I don't get quite as deep into the research and anticipation of the many games coming out. But that's mostly because it's impossible to sort through that much information about so many new games. The dynamic listing here on BGG tops a thousand titles in the database for Essen 2018. I used everyone else's anticipating (i.e. thumbs) as a guide to look through over a hundred games myself, whittling that down to about 25 that catch my eye in some way. Those are the games depicted above, and the ones I discuss in the podcast.

    -Mark


  • Posted on 22 Oct 2018

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    Boardgames To Go 184 - Conventions for Boardgame Players & Designers

     




    Openers: Ethnos and Ganz Schön Clever (app)

    Game designer David Thompson joins me to talk about most of the big game conventions in our hobby, and what they mean when you're testing or pitching designs. Of course, most of us will encounter those conventions as a player, and David talks about that experience, too. We talk about Essen (Spiel), UK Games Expo, Nuremberg, Origins, and Gencon.

    Have you been to any of these? Some may be on the other side of the world from you, and would be an incredible expense (and adventure). Others could be within driving range, or at least a reasonably priced plane ticket. Maybe you want to go just to experience one of these events. Perhaps you're a real Cult of the New junkie, and you want to buy games when they are first available. Do you just want to play a bunch of boardgames? Some of these are better for that than others.

    Or, heck, maybe you're an aspiring game designer, and you want to pitch some games like David does. That makes some of these working events, even business trips for you. There are some interesting differences between them for that purpose, too.

    David mentions several other big cons that he hasn't attended yet: Dice Tower Con, BGGcon, WBC, PAX Unplugged (and GAMA Trade Show). Of course I've talked about BGGcon a number of times, but I'm not going to make it this year. WBC is on my list for a convention I want to attend, too.

    And then...he goes on to say that his favorite convention was a regional con, Tennessee Game Days. Sounds great!


    Closers: Moving to a new place (as a gamer & designer) and Freedom:The Underground Railroad and Uwe Eickert interview on Harold On Games podcast #10

    -Mark


  • Posted on 18 Oct 2018

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    Boardgames To Go 183 - Spiel des Jahres 2018

    Opener: Nothing specific, since I discuss so many titles during the episode

    Closer: Check out the Gravity Assist podcast that includes an interview with the project scientist for "my" spacecraft heading for Mars right now.


    Perhaps foolishly, I'm posting my thoughts about the Spiel des Jahres nominees just a few hours before the actual winner in announced in Germany. Well, no matter. You may have already heard some of my thoughts about these games (as well as the Kennerspiel nominees) on a recent episode of the video series Game Night! here on BGG. On my own podcast I get to say a bit more about all of them.



    I've always liked retrospective analysis of games, and here I do a little near the end, looking back five years to the Spiel and Kenner nominees for 2013. Do you remember what those were? What do you think of those picks now?


  • Posted on 23 Jul 2018

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    Boardgames To Go 182 - Downsizing a Collection



    David G.
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    Greg Wilzbach
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    You haven't heard from me lately (unless you subscribe to my wargames podcast), but I'm still here, still gaming. However, there HAS been a transformation in my engagement with the hobby. For the past half-year I've firmly been in the mode of downsizing my collection. Why, and why now? Well, that's some of what this podcast is about. I'm joined by three of my local gaming buddies, Dave, Greg, and Mike. Dave isn't exactly downsizing, but he's disciplined about NOT letting his collection grow. So as he gets new games, he sells off others. I'm actually shrinking my collection. The other two guys are in a different frame of mind. Greg is running out of storage space, but still wants all of his games (and more). Mike thinks anyone who wants to get rid of games is crazy. It all adds up to a variety of interesting opinions about downsizing a collection.


  • Posted on 26 Jun 2018

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    Boardgames To Go 181 - Brewery Roundtable BGGcon 2017



    Bigger & better than a couple years ago, a bunch of my BGGcon buddies joined me around the microphone at an outdoor brewery table. We'd been to the Hard 8 bbq place frequented by gamers, then headed over to the Grapevine Craft Brewery. There we relaxed with a few beers and recorded some thoughts about games we'd been playing. (We even played a few games of Insider.)

    You'll hear Zak, Brian, Steve #1, Steve #2, Marcin, DaveO, Eryn, Travis, Greg, Rick, Ryan, and me talk about Magic Maze, Civilization: A New Dawn, Heaven & Ale, Majesty:For The Realm, TransAtlantic, Santa Maria, Calimala, Nusfjord, Merlin, Istanbul Dice Game, Mountains of Madness, and Azul. 

    -Mark

     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     

  • Posted on 10 Mar 2018

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