When Jim and I went to Vegas for that trade show, he showed me this on his iPad. It is like crack laced with heroin and nicotine. Wow. Luckily is has that freemium vibe which turned me off but I had to have played it for a solid 40 hours.
I never paid a dime for it and have played it a bajillion times. In fact, I should buy some of the freemium stuff just to throw some cash at the devs.
Yesterday I played a five player game of Eldritch Horror with the expansion. I'd consider the expansion a must because it one of those that gives you more of everything to beef up all the decks. At the table were two new players, one person playing for the second time and then two (including myself) that played a handful of times.
We were doomed from the start because the first few turns everyone was focused on buying items without making movement towards gates or clue tokens. By the time everyone was getting focused on doing those things, the game was already out of control. By the end of the 8th turn or so the Doom track reached its end, the GOO woke and the earth was devoured. Still, it was a great game and happy to have it hit the table.
We then followed it up with Ruse. This was a Springboard, Game Salute thing that consisted of a deck of 54 cards, six cardboard tokens packaged in a King of Tokyo size box that retails for $40 or something absurd like that. What followed was 45 minutes of time that I will never get back. It is a story-telling game based in a Steampunk world. I hated it, will never play it again and feel sorrow that this crap was ever created.
We'll see. I bought R. Launius' new Cthulhu storytelling game, and I've never really played one (Dixit, like Cards Against Humanity, is not a game, it's an activity, like coloring books or Mad Libs). As I said, we'll see.
RE: Dead Man's Draw, yeah, you're totally right Dave. I never paid a dime and it's definitely a well-balanced, well-designed app. Very fun, highly addictive and strikes the balance between fun and "too damned hard". I spent a month, at least, trying to get 3-star (coin?) ratings on each challenge but I gave up. Shit is too hard.
I like Eldritch Horror a lot. No, it's not about Arkham which is kinda lame, but it's fucking tight, and just like in Arkham they create a lot of small stories with little text.
But I played a solo game recently with two investigators, and one of my dudes died quite early. Now, this is not neccesarily a problem when it comes to winning, but continuing just felt wrong so I packed up the game prematurely. And while I appreciate how the game makes it easy to stay in the game, it sort of bugs me that dying has so little impact - and can even be a benefit since you can bring in a character better suited for the end game.
My kids are with my in-laws for this week, so my wife and I spent some time at Starbucks. We brought along Lost Cities, since that's one of her favorite games.
I spent a long time actively hating Lost Cities. I assumed it was too light, and even though I like risk-taking games, I couldn't sense any good way to manage or assess that risk before I committed. That changed a little when I finally read up on some strategy just to see if I was crazy for feeling that way. I guess I hadn't played very well, because a lot of it (following the 9s and 10s mostly) never once occurred to me.
So now I've played a few games with my wife armed with this understanding, and I'm ready to admit that I actually really enjoy it. I actually think I'll have a column soon on why and how we change our minds about games, because I'm frankly a little embarrassed at how I devalued that game.
Mark one more down for Knizia. I realized last night that I have three times as many games by Knizia than I do any other designer. Guess that means he's my favorite by default.
Lost Cities is way better than the Ameritrash Handbook would have you believe.
It does fall victim to that "colored, numbered cards" thing. But it's a _really_ good colored, numbered cards game. I think it's a good one, I wouldn't list it as one of my favorite Knizias but I definitely think there's a good reason it's remained so popular and widely played.
I've never played Keltis, but it's supposedly a multiplayer Lost Cities. There is an IOS app, maybe I'll look at it.
Lost Cities is one of my top three most played games. A college buddy and I would sit around when we were living in the Chicago Burbs and play game after game of this. He wasn't a gamer but he liked Poker and he liked Gin so this was a big hit.
I think if it were to ditch it's "theme" and just be colors or suits and was marketed to associate with common card games with a standard deck of cards I think it'd do very well on mass market game shelves.