Review – Unmatched

the cleverest girls, sinbad simulator 2020, "popped corn"

We’ve got two questions for you. Did you see this year’s Undaunted review? And do you want another great 2 player game with “Un” in the name?

Unmatched is a bewitchingly sexy game to collect, it’s a fab little fighting game, and it takes just 20 minutes to finish a whole game. Unless you include the rules explanation, then it takes just 22 minutes.

Enjoy, everybody!

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GAMES NEWS! 09/03/2020

A CROW LOOKED AT ME(EPLE), PINBALL POWERHOUSES, SEASIDE SIESTA, A VERY NIETZSCHE NEWS

Tom: I hate visiting the news nurse’s office.

Ava: Look, you’re lucky that we’ve got the News Health Service so it doesn’t cost you a penny – maybe you should do something to take your mind off the growing, creeping pain from that nasty news infection? They’ve got some light reading here. Would you like a newspaper?

Tom: ARGH. I need a holiday. Matt’s been having me play boardgames all day and then we’ve had to talk about them afterwards? Honestly it’s been my absolute worst nightmare.

Ava: Sounds terrible, how about a Segue-Class flight to Santa Monica? This is one of Alderac’s big releases of the year, promising a delightfully pastel worker-placement drafting game about the titular town. It looks soothing, and could be interesting. Josh Wood previously designed Cat Lady, so has an eye for a quirky relaxing theme. Key choices are about whether your bit of the seafront will be more for tourist bustle or a break from the hustle. To be honest, we don’t have much to go on here, I just really like the art.

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Review – Nemesis

Ridley Not, Nopestromo, Robobrewster, The Git Chronicles

This week’s review puts the EXTRA into extraterrestrial, as Matt and Tom dive into the murky cupboard of Awaken Realm’s Nemesis. Please do note that this video contains scenes that younger viewers may find either awesome or mildly distressing, and finally – should you spot any of the hidden wires used during the special animated sequence, we’d ask that you don’t spoil the wonder of cinema by pointing them out to other viewers. Have a lovely week… IN SPACE.

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GAMES NEWS! 02/03/2020

Is Ryan Gosling real?, Scooby Don’t

Tom: Ow ow ow ow. I got my hands stuck in the news cookie jar.

Ava: Tom, that’s not the news cookie jar, that’s just a mousetrap. What were you even thinking? Let’s get you some nice soothing news before your hand swells up.

Tom: It’s too late! I think I’ve got a news infection!

Ava: Don’t worry about that, get your suit on: we’ve got some business news this week, as what used to be my favourite publisher jumps back to independence. Plaid Hat Games was bought by Asmodee Group in 2015, and has now been bought back by its founder, Colby Dauch. Several of their big titles will be transferred to Fantasy Flight and Z-Man Games, and Plaid Hat will go back to being a (relatively) small fish.

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Podcast #104: ‘Ain’t no party like a Glenmore II: Chronicles party

sponsored by biscuits, sorry about the stings, keep it in, please RSVP to my nice party i need to know how many boardgames to bring

Welcome, diners! Take your seats for the very 104th Shut Up & Sit Down podcast. Enjoy a salty fish supper alongside Oceans, a haggis and a whisky with Glen More II: Chronicles, or a rubbery old hot-dog with Rallyman GT. All options are served with opinions from our cardboard sommelier Matt Lees, and a side of steaming hot takes from our acrylic potwash, Tom Brewster.

Speaking of sides, this week’s podcast features a smorgasbord of canapes, vol au vents and other esoteric snacklets in our detour through Tom’s exclusive, invite-only Party Game Zone™. You can find us in the cordoned off area, chatting about a series of games that you could bring to a party, and smattering of games that you should bring to a party. No +1s are permitted, and BYOB(oardgames).

We also have a post-dinner keynote speech about recent videos on the site – including the palpably divisive review of Bunny Kingdom. Quinns and Tom aren’t on speaking terms after that one, on account of the attempted murder.

Have a lovely weekend all!

Tap below for full timestamps and more info!

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How To Teach Board Games Like a Pro

two pilots is too many, I won't be a power ranger for less than one drink

This week Matt begged Quinns to revisit a topic he’s talked about a little before: what tips could he impart for mastering “The Teach”? It’s the hurdle that stops so many from getting into the hobby – the stumbling block that has seen a many an evening of potential jolly cardboard fun veer off-course into a scene of pure disaster. Whether you’re a seasoned somelier of analog fun or someone who needs the confidence boost to go for it and host, we don’t think there’s any better source of knowledge for teaching people how to teach a board game.

Enjoy! And do let us know if you have any invaluable tips or tricks that you think we’ve missed!

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GAMES NEWS! 24/02/20

an in-browser catastrophe, Unified plastic, Touchable smells, so long and thanks for all the terrible jokes

Tom: Where are we going today Ava?

Ava: It’s a whole new world! A new fantastic point of view! We’ve got street magic, unionised superheroes (real and fictional), smells you can touch, sand enthusiasts, at least one very bad joke and games that ask you to escape from both Nottingham and your very own kitchen table.

Tom: I think you’re slightly misremembering the plot of Aladdin.

Ava: Get back in your lamp, evil Mr Jaffa Cake!

Tom: Does that count as one of your wishes, or is that for me to decide?

Ava: Hang on a moment, I need to find my union rep.

Ava: Huzzah. After a media blackout of a couple of months, Kickstarter United has been officially recognised as a union.

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Tactics & Tactility #6 – Caverna’s tiny architectures

clacking and stacking, nobody cares where you keep your stones, please don't leave the dogs with the sheep

[Tactics and Tactility is our column about the feelings, details and pleasures of tabletop gaming. This week Ava is looking at Caverna, and the gentle joys of piling up rocks.]

In front of me is a little board. Half of it is forest, half of it is mountain.

I do not understand the intricacies of the game I’m playing, Caverna, but I do understand that this tiny cardboard fiefdom is mine. Within the context of the rules, I can do what I want with it.

The game in Caverna comes from competition for the best spaces, picking the right order to do things in, making sure you can be as efficient as possible, and always having a back up plan. There’s a load of clever decisions to be made on the central board, and a few on your player board. Where you put things matters, but not as much as how quickly you got there, and just the simple binary question of whether you have enough space or not.

That’s the game. That’s the puzzle. That’s the beating heart of the design.

But that’s not what makes me love my time with it.

Caverna is a treasure trove of little wooden objects. Animals and resources all come in tiny wooden images. Rooms and fields are little cardboard tiles. You lay the tiles out, you find the right spaces for things, and then you’ve built a thing.

A home.

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Review – Bunny Kingdom & Expansion

Bunny Bingo, Matthew Carrothands, can a boy not be brimming with reckless hate?

In this week’s review, Matt goes on a voyage of discovery into the wonderful world of Bunny Kingdom, and takes a quick detour through its expansion – Bunny Kingdom: In The Sky. Is it good? Is it bad? Is it somewhere in-between? Boy, does this review have at least one of these opinions to share with you.

To say that Matt got lost in the world of Bunny Kingdom would be an understatement – he was last seen eating fistfuls of carrot near an industrial estate in Milton Keynes. “It’s for my art” he reportedly yelled at a shocked elderly couple investigating the commotion, who were slightly disturbed by how much he really did look just like a real rabbit. If anyone has information as to Matt’s current whereabouts, please do let us know. Our HR department almost entirely has his best interests at heart.

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GAMES NEWS! 17/02/20

Secrets of BGG revealed, Caffeinated Skeletons, The Games News Shoutcast, Two Trenchcoats inside of a dice

Tom: Come one, come all! Hear two-and-a-half bundles of electrified meat ramble about board games, for exactly 1,736 words! I’ve had one coffee and now the world feels like it is made of bees and thinking.

Ava: Business as usual, then?

Tom: Bees knees as usual? Do bees have knees? How many? Ava this is too much for a Monday.

Ava: Let’s just shout lots.

Tom: GLASGOW!

Ava: New from Lookout Games, is Glasgow, a twenty minute two player roundabout of resource gathering and buildings building. Like Tokaido and Patchwork, being behind means it’s your turn, so you’ve got to weigh up jumping ahead for the best bits against giving your opponent everything you turned your nose up at. The buildings you choose to build will form a shared grid that dictates how you’ll score. It looks simple, variable and not very much like Glasgow.

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New video review! ...Five reviews, technically! Quinns presents his favourite new card games: youtube.com/watch?v=r0yjpb…

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