The Tao of Gaming

Boardgames and lesser pursuits

Posts Tagged ‘Sentinels of the Multiverse

Spirit Island (& Handelabra Bundle) on Steam

Spirit Island was always one of those solos I wanted to try but never got around to acquiring. It’s now out on steam. I decided to upgrade to buy the full bundle by the developer which includes:

  • Sentinels of the Multiverse
  • One Deck Dungeon
  • Spirit Island
  • Aeon’s End
  • Bottom of the Ninth

Of which I’ve only played Sentinels. The bundle was $60 but for a number of solo games I’d been tempted to buy. I spent the evening playing One Deck Dungeon, its amusing. (Apparently this bundle is for base games only, which is fine, I may pick up DLC later). I’m reasonably sure I’ll get decent value out of this. Anyway, I figured this may be of general interest for people looking for solo games during the pandemic.

Written by taogaming

March 14, 2021 at 10:13 pm

All Factorio All The Time

And not much boardgaming. I actually took the TaoLing to game night this week and played …. one game of Jump Drive. Just wasn’t in the mood to play much. It happens. On the Factorio front I’m building a mega-ish-base (ish because once 0.15 drops I’ll probably upgrade and restart). An interesting learning experience (quite different from speed runs). Also learning how to deal with big alien bases. (I do hope they do something interesting with Laser Turrets in the new expansion, because there are lots of inferior weapon types, and Laser Turrets.

A large up front cost to build, but no ammo cost (assuming your power is fine).

I’ve actually just been watching a lot of Factorio as well. Watching the TaoLing play, and some youtube channels.

On the actual game front, been playing Sentinels and finally convinced the TaoLing to play Advanced villains, so its a challenge. Also played a few games of Fairy Tale.

Written by taogaming

March 22, 2017 at 8:44 pm

A rather surprising Sentinels game (Updated)

Wraith (female Batman), Dark Watch Expatriette (female punisher), Legacy (superman) and Absolute Zero (thermal Iron Man) were battling Citizen Dawn in the Dok’thrath capital. The game looked to be going along swimmingly, Wraith got off to an absolutely stunning start with a few improvised inventions (which really speed up the card flow, as not only do you get to search your deck for a card and play it, you get to play another card) and was quickly able to use two powers a turn, including a large projectile attack and a small projectile attack that reduced damage … and the microtargeting computer (which boosts projectile damage).

On the other hand, Expatriette was as bad as she normally is. Seriously, there needs to be an Expatriette that makes ammo cards good, they are about 1/2 her deck and terrible. I’m not really sure who Citizen Dawn is supposed to be. Somewhere between brainwashing zombie master and … something else. But her schtick is that at some point she becomes invulnerable for a few turns, until there are enough citizens (zombies) in play, at which point she tires out. So you have to either kill her without killing any citizens (so she doesn’t become invulnerable) or kill them, then wait a few turns without killing citizens.

It’s typically not too hard. When she’s invulnerable, she pumps out cards.

Anyway, we quickly trounced enough zombies, she went all starburst-y, and then … just powerful hit/healing cards. We’d finally got a string of citizens, but were then faced with a choice … do nothing to let her revert, but take a huge hit from all the citizens we didn’t kill, or wound them (to reduce their damage) and risk that one faction in the Dok’thrath civil war might finish them off. We wounded them, and then the civil war killed them all.

Alongside with Wraith and Expatriette.

Suddenly down two heroes and meanwhile Citizen Dawn has healed about 20% of her hit points and we still had several turns of invulnerability. And Citizen Dawn wiped the board, destroying all of Absolute Zero’s toys. But the Wraith does have a good ‘dead’ power (either destroying an ongoing card or letting a hero play a card) so she helped Absolute Zero get off his Brett Easton Ellis streak while Expatratiette laid down some covering fire to keep legacy alive (she lets heroes reduce damage a bit. Even dead, she’s not that useful).

And somehow the heroes won.

Probably my closest victory in a few dozen games.

Update — A few hours later we won with a single hit point remaining on all the heroes! The Dreamer (the psychic kid you must avoid killing as her nightmares ravage us) looked to be going down easily, but a sudden burst of projections killed everyone except Tachyon. Still, Tachyon had a large number of defensive constructs protecting her, so she managed to take out a few nightmares in one round. The dreamer almost totalled Tachyon’s defenses and then nearly killed her, but was able to play a card that let her play two cards and draw two (at the cost of going down to a single point of damage) and then killed the final nightmare necessary to win. But we had to survive until the start of the villain turn, and that required a nervous draw of the environment deck. When it turned out to be neutral, we won.

Written by taogaming

March 4, 2017 at 7:39 pm

Saving the Universe — Wager Master, Sky-Scraper and Captain Cosmos

Played a quartet of Sentinels today with the TaoLing, and some new stuff hit the table.

The main one was Wager Master, a Mr. Myxzptlk-like character who plays indestructible condition cards that alter the game rules (like switching the players turn order, or switching the order that things happen in turns, or making the heroes lose if they reduce him to zero HP) as well as more standard things (like destroying equipment and zotting heroes). But while they are indestructible they can be flipped over (turned off) and turned back on. I rather enjoyed this, but the TaoLing apparently wants a more straight forward game.

I also got to play Sky-Scraper, an size-shifter who can deal damage (when big) and mess with you (when small). Enjoyable.

Finally, I got a few games in with Captain Cosmic, who is similar to Unity in that he summons a bunch of small, fragile”constructs” that do a variety of things, but can also be sacrificed for a big whammy. He was not useful in Silver Gulch, which has a bunch of people who randomly shoot anything that moves, but still reasonably fun.

I still haven’t played against every environment, but getting in a few new cards made it a good day.

Written by taogaming

October 30, 2016 at 8:36 pm

Summer Open Thread

’tis summer break, the kids are at camp, so it’s like a mini-vacation. (And I am, in fact, back from my actual vacation, and drove 2,000+ miles over the last 10 days). So, what’s what?

The AVClub has a nice article on the world building of Sentinels of the Multiverse (which remains one of my most played games of the decade).

Just when I get charged for Churchill, I see another GMT P500 game I think I want to order. (Between those and QuarterMaster General, perhaps I’ll be set for quick-ish grand WWII games).

On the media front, I’m currently binging through the second season of Bojack Horseman. (And now that the kids are at camp, I’ll catch up on GoT. (Current joke making the rounds, “George RR Martin, Joss Whedon and Steven Moffat walk into a bar…“). I’ll probably buy the 2nd season of Rick and Morty when it comes out, and I’m sorely tempted to buy the S1 Bluray to watch again.

I finally got around to playing Splendor. It’s very dry, but I enjoy it.

Bridge — I played in the San Antonio Regional. I did not play well, but still managed to win 13-ish masterpoints, which are inflating at rates not seen since the Weimar Republic. (I’ve gained ~100 points in the last 12 months doing basically nothing of note, and missing about half of the tournaments I normally play). I did just make a nice play on BBO just now after bidding a hopeless 3N that I knew was well against the odds. I bid it b/c I was playing on BBO and expected the defense to toss a trick, which they did. Then I found the cards in the right place and a critical pinning play. As it turns out, I should have unblocked during the pin, but my opponents missed they killing defense at that point, so I made. [The one thing I got from the regional was one partner’s comment … “in a mixed field you need to more aggressively punish the weak”]

Movies: Ex Machina was ok. It Follows was very good. What we do in the shadows (vampire mockumentary) was meh, but I wanted to like it because it had that Flight of the Conchords guy.
And I saw (on 538) an interesting math puzzle from the International Math Olympiad.

Determine all triples (a, b, c) of positive integers such that each of the numbers: ab-c, bc-a, ca-b is a power of two.

Since it’s an Olympiad question, it’s not surprising I can’t solve it. (I was good at these things, but not that good). I do see that a,b,c must all be even or odd (and can’t be two far apart), but I’m missing a key insight or two. But I’m mulling it over.

So, summer open thread — What games are you playing, media are you consuming, and timewasters are you indulging?

Written by taogaming

July 22, 2015 at 9:44 pm

Just keep swimming, Just keep swimming ….

With the latest Sentinals stuff I have 6 099 600 different scenarios to play, assuming I don’t care about the order of the heroes and ignoring variant heroes. (Team Leader Tachyon is too good, although I do like the variant Legacies…). So the general rule is that each expansion gets me to add 10-20 plays, and increases the number of combinations geometrically. I’m also ignoring the teams of villains possibilities, which I admit I didn’t care for but the next expansion may change that, but if I do start counting it the number of scenarios will get big fast.

By those numbers I’m 0.00137 % done with this game. I’ll probably hit 100 plays this year.

Thoughts on the new stuff:

  • I dislike Guise, although it helps me understand why Deadpool is so popular. Fun character (“I’m hardboiled, but not like the egg. Like a detective.”) just not fun to play in this game. (Although he’s great with Team Leader Tachyon. As are all characters). Skyscraper is your Ant Man / Apache Chief size changer.
  • Captain Cosmic is pretty good, although some villains eat him for breakfast. Against many villains he spams a lot of cards which means a lot of effects. Since I normally play two characters this slows things down.
  • It’s nice to have another variant victory. Deadline is trying to destroy the environment, which he does by removing the environment cards from the game, and wins if there’s no deck. Haven’t tried Kaargra Warfang, Progeny or the Wager Master yet.
  • We were destroyed quickly by Infinitor, then had a different group beat him in a rematch.
  • The Enclave of the Endlings is …. odd. The Omnitron IV environment seemed bland the one time I tried it.

Sentinels is the proof that “Varietal” expansions work indefinitely.


Written by taogaming

April 26, 2015 at 10:12 pm

Posted in Reviews

Tagged with

So, were there any classic games released last year?

I’d say no, but my track record recently indicates that I’m not up to date on what’s good. This follows the new Tao-of-Gaming-Rule-Of-Everything ® — “Let’s see if people still like this in a few years.” (Current Tao Media Watching includes such cutting edge shows as The Sopranos and The Shield). So, this is more of an “Do you really think that anything you’ve bought in the last 18 months (say) is likely to reach classic status.

A classic game can get burned out, but after a suitable lapse (say, a few years) you start playing it again.

A classic should have a reasonable chance of making it to 25+ games (for longer games, this could be lowered).

I actually think there were a few classic games 2-3 years ago. I’m still binging on Mage Knight, Sentinels. Other games could become classics, like King of Tokyo. But last year? I don’t know.

So, enlighten me. Open Thread. Given that we’re talking about classic status, I expect the false positive ratio to be tampered down a bit. Say, to 75%, not the usual 90%.

Written by taogaming

May 22, 2014 at 8:24 pm

Is it just me, or are the Vengeful Five nigh-impossible to defeat?

Haven’t come close to killing a single villain, much less the team.

Written by taogaming

February 23, 2014 at 5:41 pm

Sentinels of the Multiverse — Vengeance

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.

Written by taogaming

February 14, 2014 at 11:08 pm

New Promo Gloomweaver (& Spite)

So, I ordered the new Sentinels Promos (along with the errata cards) as a stocking stuffer. They arrived yesterday and we tried out the new Gloomweaver. Anyway, his schtick is that he plays extra cards when non-villain targets are destroyed.  Oh, and when he flips (at zero HP) he restores himself to 100 HP and starts nuking everything for massive damage (including himself and his own army). And he then heals whenever anything dies.

The lineup — The Wraith, Omnitron-X, Expatriette, and Legacy (all basic versions) in Megalopolis.

We (as usual) got off to a rough start. Expatriette found herself with an embarrassing lack of guns for two turns, the wraith quickly started ordnancing the usual array of cultists and zombies. Omnitron X played out Innervation ray (to heal the heroes) and his “2 irreducible damage per turn” ray, to quickly start plinging enemies and slowing down the heroes decline while slapping out an impressive array of components. Legacy was doing his typical buffing.

After 3 turns, everyone had their setup, but Gloomweaver recovered the dead zombies and cultists back out of his trash, and we had a large problem. Omnitron-X used a singularity (destroying all his equipment to do 5 points of damage to Gloomweaver and his army) which took X out of the battle for a few turns but gave us plenty of breathing room.  By this point Wraith had gotten out an Infrared eyepiece (to adjust the villain deck in our favor) and could use two powers a turn, so she still kept slapping around Gloomweaver or his minions and making sure the really nasty ones went to the bottom of the deck. Expatreitte had managed to get out Pride, Prejudice and Quick Load (with hollow points) so she was doing 8 points of damage each turn, making up for lost time.  Legacy put out Lead from the front (so he could absorb damage. Useful as GW targets the weak) and declared himself immune to melee. This turned out even better when we suddenly found ourselves in close quarters (all damage is melee) so we had a ‘free’ turn where legacy used his invulnerability to halt our decline. We pounded Gloomweaver over to his ‘rotting god’ side, and he’s suddenly at 100 HP, and damaging everyone four points a turn.  By this point Wraith was down to 5 HP and Omnitron was at 11, with the other two heroes around 15.

But Legacy just declared himself immune to infernal damage (GW’s new type) and the beatdown didn’t take long. There weren’t many targets in the Megalopolis deck (to allow GW to heal, or get extra cards early on) and we had a near lock barring some horrific bad card luck, which didn’t happen. (Another close quarters would have switch GloomWeaver back to melee and killed the wraith, among all the other damage).

A bit of a cakewalk, since it ended in a situation where we were all practically invulnerable from the villain, and mainly had to worry about random damage from the environment at the end. But, always fun to get more Sentinels stuff. Still enthusiastic about this game.

Update — Unsurprisingly, the new Spite is horrific. We managed to get a bunch of victims in the safe house, but when he flips he gets +X damage (X equals “number of victims in the safe house”). Apparently for new spite you don’t want to flip him, really.

Written by taogaming

December 21, 2013 at 11:11 am