One of the cool things about (finally) having all of my board game articles on my own web site is that I get to see all the search terms that people use to reach the site. To date my #8 all-time search term, and the one that’s least covered by what’s actually on the site, is “lords of waterdeep meeples”.
As a result I’ve taken a bit of time today to list out the coolest meeples I’ve found for Lords of Waterdeep. I don’t have any relationship with any of these people, and I can’t say anything about their trustworthiness nor the quality of their meeples. But, what they have looks cool. The pictures are drawn from their individual sites. Click on the images to see larger pictures and click on the blue names to go to the artist’s web site.
The Settlers of Catan (1995) is what I like to think of as a primordial eurogame. You can see some of the clean abstractions of eurogaming — like the resource-to-building engine — and Settlers pretty much invented modern ideas of clear iconography and rulebook-less play. However, Settlers has something that you wouldn’t expect to find a modern German-produced eurogame: a pretty big heaping dollop of randomness. I’m not talking about the development cards — which are more in line with the level of randomness you’d expect from a (somewhat random) eurogame. I’m talking about the production rolls at the heart of Settlers, where every turn players only earn the resources specified by an entirely random dice roll.
The dice rolling of Settlers reminds me more of the design of a French eurogame — which tend to have more theme and more luck. As a German game, it’s quite unusual … and some people hate that!
I should note that I’m not one of them. I’m perfectly happy to enjoy Settlers for what it is. However, I’m aware that not everyone agrees, so this week I wanted to spend some time on one of Germany’s top games, and investigate how its production could be made less random.
As with its predecessors, this article is intended to talk about the games that I played recently which I’d never played before. Most of them are games that were published in the last year or so within the United States, but on occasion I play a “new to me” game that is quite older; they’re all listed here.
I usually write this article on a quarterly basis, since that tends to offer up a good selection of new games. However, my new game selection in Winter was quite poor due to a combination of sickness and vacation (fortunately, not at the same time!). So I didn’t write the article in April, as I usually would have … then got deluged by new games in Spring. So, I’ve got a lot to talk about this time …
Keep in mind these are not my assessments of whether the games are good or bad, but instead my assessments of whether they appeal to me. Generally, I like light but strategic games that are euro designs but that don’t feel like work to me. They’re in roughly descending order of interest. Continue reading →