Damn funny, if a bit short (I got it Friday after work and finished it today after maybe 15 hours or so). I did have to go to the internet for the minigames, some of those are opaque. (In particular, the “Sneaky Squeeker” is much easier than the controls hint shows. And probably the cup game, too, although I gutted that one out and eventually stumbled onto it).
As you can expect from Parker/Stone, it’s a pretty gross game. One of the best jokes was when the SWAT team busts into a scene and then one one of them looks at his doohickey and goes “Woohoo, the ESRB ratings are off the chart bad!” And that’s true. I let the TaoLing watch for a while (because he’s old enough the foul language isn’t such a big deal) but during the first night it started getting a bit awkward and by the second night he was banished.
I could play again as a different class (I played Mage, the other choices are Fighter, Thief and Jew) but I suspect there’s not much replayability. I still have some quests to complete and I may finish them. I saw a lot of South Park characters I knew, and a few more I’d never seen before. I think most (if not all) characters show up at one point.
So between that, the new Rocksmith game, and my new job I haven’t been playing any new board games.
So I stumbled upon one of those logic puzzles that I love.
Six boys are accused of stealing apples. Exactly two are guilty. Which two? When the boys are questioned, Harry names Charlie and George, James names Donald and Tom, Donald names Tom and Charlie, George names Harry and Charlie, and Charlie names Donald and James. Tom can’t be found. Four of the boys who were questioned named one guilty boy correctly and one incorrectly, and the fifth lied outright. Who stole the apples?
And I got the solution correct (in a few mninutes).
But how a mathematician proved the solution in a few seconds was a revelation to me.
Haven’t come close to killing a single villain, much less the team.
To break out of my gaming funk, more Sentinels.
For plain-old superhero goodness, this has five new heroes and 2 new environments. It also introduces a new villain option, which I haven’t tried (mini villains, each with their own deck, one villain per hero). For simplicity, we just played with new heroes and environment, but an old villain.
The Naturalist has a few forms (croc, rhino, gazelle), but can only have one form at a time. Each form has a different power, and many of his cards give a bonus if he’s in the right form. Also, his base power is “Fetch a form and play it” which solves the annoying “Ex-Patriette” problem of not getting the base cards you need.
Setback’s power is to get an unlucky token to draw (and maybe play) a card. Many of his own cards hurt him (or redirect damage to him) to gain unlucky tokens, and his other cards spend them to do some rather nice things. Interesting, not sure I’ve got a handle on him.
K.N.Y.F.E (played by the TaoLing) has a lot of melee attacks, and seems to have a thing of “Attack, and if you almost defeated it, you defeat it.” Useful against villains with lots of minions.
The Sentinels are a four mini-hero team (each with 10-15 HP) each with their own power. So you get to pick one power a turn. Seemed more like a support character, a pretty good one. Very vulnerable to “Each hero target” of course.
I didn’t play with the fifth hero (Parse?). I did also like the new environment (The Freedom tower) which gives a bunch of mild hero boosts (via rooms) but then has entry points that cancel a room and give the villains a bonus. Quite nice thematically, maybe a bit tilted towards the heroes.
Oh, and Citizen Dawn kicked our asses. We almost won, despite having almost way to deal with ongoings. (3 villain cards a turn, plus two resurrections means the zombie horde grows quickly).
Rating — Whatever you normally rate Sentinels as. For me, still enthusiastic.
Sometimes it feels like Age of Steam is the last Wallace game I truly enjoyed. (That’s not true, I like Automobile, London, Struggle of Empires and Age of Industry).
But I sat down to play Moongha Invaders unaware of it’s pedigree. But when I glanced at the box halfway through the game, the name explained it all. Here you have a game about Giant Monsters rampaging across the land and fighting each other, and it felt like just another action placement game.
I’ve no idea what inspired Wallace to add Random combat on top of a procedural game that typifies his design.
I was probably in a bad mood yesterday, but I’m sticking with my initial assessment. Avoid.
I find a great strip and endplay to get out for down 1. At least that’s better than yesterday, where I figured out that the opening leader had underled an ace AND smothered the correct honor to escape for -1100. I suppose even making the finals of the Flight A NAP is an accomplishment (legitimately this time, not as first alternate) but at some point I’d like to do well in said finals.
The Orb Expansion strangles Race. No, it waterboards it — instead of squeezing the life out it just dunks fun for 2-3 minute bursts. It takes a simultaneous psychological tableau builder, and demands that you get to wait for each player to take their turn. It adds map building and visualization. It makes Race a fixed fun game, and mercilessly fixes the fun at “Not enough.”
A full first arc game is faster than this. Non-orb for me.