Quinns: Huddle up, friends. Here we are in the depths of winter with nothing more to burn than the castoff cardboard frames from which we punch our tokens. It is cold and it is dark.
Paul: Yet the warm heart of Shut Up & Sit Down beats strong, emboldened by the news of games to come. This week we’re going to tell you about PRINCESSES and SPICES and AN EXPANSION FOR CAPTAIN SONAR. 2017 is already up to speed and it’s looking glorious. Which one thing are you most excited about?
Quinns: Yes! Do leave a comment below. Share your youth and vigor with us old men.
Paul, there was a newsdump of apocalyptic proportions on BGG recently. First off, my word, there have been no less than four expansions announced for Terraforming Mars, spread out over the next two years. That’s a heck of a long tail, but then Stronghold Games has announced that the coming reprint of Terraforming Mars is the largest print run they’ve ever done.
The first expansion, Hellas & Elysium, is nothing more than a new double-sided board to play on, though, so it doesn’t sound like it’ll make a significant change to how the game plays. But more importantly, you didn’t sound enamoured with Terraforming Mars when you played it at BGGCon… ?
Paul: It had some capable economic mechanics, but I’ll need an expansion adding so much more player interaction before I want to come back to the game.
What I’m way, way more inspired by is the news of “la première super méga extension” for Captain Sonar. According to my excellent French skills, this means “the first godly and glorious addition to this terrific team game of tension and torpedoes.” What’s in it? Well, the sneaky people at Matagot won’t actually say right now. This one is staying submerged. What horrible teasing.
Quinns: Also from the above link: What the hell is Princess Jing?
Paul: I… well… It’s a bluffing game where you… put a princess in a box? Or… you… don’t…?
Quinns: Maybe we can yell “Jingle Bells!” when we find her?
Paul: Or when we succeed at not finding her.
Quinns: Something we know a little more about it the emergence of a new(ish) publisher called Plan B Games.
I’m no good as a business journalist, but I am good at analogies, so let me try and do one of those.
So there’s a big whale called Asmodee that’s eating everything in the sea, right? And last year it swallowed another giant whale called F2Z Studios. But it turns out now that it didn’t eat the whole thing and has regurgitated a bit of F2Z that has now subsequently rebranded itself and is a new fish called Plan B games and inside Plan B’s belly is the fish called Pretzel Games (makers of Flick ‘Em Up and Junk Art).
Paul: Are those two games fish as well?
Quinns: No they’re just underwater board games.
Paul: Got it.
Quinns: Anyway, this week Plan B games has announced its debut game will, in fact, be a trilogy. Century: Spice Road, pictured above, will release this summer, and the Century games are three connected trading titles that can all be played separately, but which are also united in theme and can be mixed together for a grander experience.
Plan B also say they have the talented Matt Leacock working on a forthcoming title. That’s a fine pedigree they have there, so this looks like a team to keep a close eye on.
Paul: Have you also seen the news of even more Knizia games also coming back to the land of the living? There’s King’s Road, a new version of a game called Imperium, and Stephenson’s Rocket, both of which date back to (oh this is such a weird phrase to say) the turn of the century.
Quinns: Oh yes. Are they good Knizias? We’ve never tried either and there are some gems buried in the past, but also quite a few that really don’t do it for us. Stephenson’s Rocket is all about buying shares in railroad companies and expanding rail networks across England (and, with a new expansion, also the US), while Imperium was a kind of area control game about gaining influence in Roman provinces. Neither sounds immediately inspiring, nor all that fresh, but we had a ton of fun with the re-release of Ra last year, so who knows? As my uncle always said, “An open mind is a healthy mind.”
Paul: Was that the uncle who always ate brains?
Quinns: Yes. Commenters, do let us know if you played either of these!
Paul: One game that passed us by first time around was the exploration of environmentalist energy economics that is CO₂. While our first chance to save the world might’ve passed us by, we have another opportunity now that a fancy new second edition is on the way. This looks like an impressive overhaul, too, with streamlining, a new co-op mode and fancier wooden components. I’m rather interested in this, as it looks like a great idea for a game and even more appealing if they can make it seem a bit less busy than the first edition.
Quinns: I guess now that designer Vital Lacerda’s a big deal, people are revisiting his early games and making them all classy. First Vinhos, now this. Does that mean Kanban will be next?
Paul: I had an aneurism trying to understand Kanban.
Quinns: After reviewing Vinhos Deluxe I was so enamoured with Lacerda’s vision and O’Toole’s art design that I removed some games to fit Vinos in my collection. A month later I came to my senses and realised I’d never realistically get it down from the shelf, learn it again, teach it, and play it when there are faster and sharper things in my house, so it went into my attic. But my god! If you like that kind of thing, these deluxe Lacerda games like Vinhos Deluxe, The Gallerist and the forthcoming Lisboa are so, so appealing. They’re like spider webs constructed of consequence.
Speaking of other editions, did you know about this marriage-exclusive version of Love Letter?
Paul: Look at how white it is! You can play it at your wedding! With three other people. While the rest of your guests just watch. Awkwardly.
Quinns: Along the same lines, did you see that Oink Games is doing a tweaked version of Deep Sea Adventure as a tie-in for a Japanese band? Weird.
Oh my god STOP THE PRESSES, Bruno Faidutti’s Karmasutra is being PUBLISHED THIS YEAR!
Paul: Oh no.
Quinns: Oh yes. Gently NSFW images of the cards can be found here and my goodness, the finished art actually looks really cute considering this has a good chance of being the most disturbing game we will ever review. And I haven’t forgotten Tease, either.
Paul: THE WOLF? Quinns these are wrestling moves
Quinns: This simple yet terrifying party game could only have been designed by a Frenchman, I think. Players form teams, you draw a random sex position from the Kama Sutra from the deck of cards and the first team to assume that position and pop a balloon placed between them wins the round. I imagine that more often than not this results in a few seconds of panicked thrusting before somebody loses their balance. Which sounds familiar.
Quinns: I just hope that some of the cards depict men using wasp venom on their penis to make it swell, or drinking cow urine to punish themselves for ejaculating in a “non-human vagina”, all of which is in the Kama Sutra. Apparently.
Quinns: I mean I just did a five minute Google search. Anyhoo, do you want to review this or shall I do it with Matt?
Quinns: Yeah, it’s probably one for me and Matt.
It’s time for our reader gallery!
Luke Davis sent the above photo in to [email protected], with a lovely little note.
We had a pretty Shut Up and Sit Down-related christmas this year, as my wife bought me a monthly pledge as a present (we constantly devour all of your content so its only right). She also gave me a knitted standard reference pear christmas tree decoration (see attached photo). I feel these should adorn every Shut Up and Sit Down household by the next festive season.
All the best,
Luke and Liz
Thank you so, so much Liz! I think that’s just swell. Don’t you think so, Paul?
Quinns: Meanwhile, in response to our podcast discussion on how to decorate your board game playing area, Swedish SU&SD fan Jacob Westerlund sent in the above picture of his living room.
Hi!First I’d like to thank you all for a great site with a lot of useful stuff! Then I thought I would share some tips of how people could decorate their walls with board game art.Just decorate with the board game itself! We bought some picture lists ( as a true swede, we bought them from Ikea) and placed the board games on full display in our living room. See attached picture.All the best,Jacob