It’s war: Player Interaction

war, worker placement, solo multiplayer, Runebound, It's war, Agricola
It's war: Player Interaction
Quinns: There’s a WAR ON here at SU&SD. A disagreement of olympic proportions. You see, I think board games should be about interacting with one another, and Paul is an asshole. I’ll let him explain. 

Paul: Quinns is not a fan of certain kinds of games. Worker placement games, games where the players are a bit more independent, or games where players are otherwise free to act without having to worry about one another. You know, all those great games like Runebound and Agricola, and a while ago he got mad at Stone Age. All those well-lived, charming, innovative games that are adored by millions. He’s going to try to explain why and he’ll flap more than an army of penguins. Watch.


Review: Dixit

review, reference pear, swordfighting ants, millicent again, dixit
Review: Dixit
Quinns: I’m going to go ahead and stick my fork-like opinion into your ribeye reality, here-

Paul: That’s disgusting.

Quinns: Dixit is a multi-award winning game that everyone should know about. An honest-to-god revelation. That’s because where most board games test your logic, wit, or even dexterity, Dixit tests your ability
to toy with the imagination of your friends.

Imagine you were reading some beautiful, surrealist children’s novel and the rag-tag band of loveable protagonists wander into a smoky tavern for
a drink of… apple ale, or something. Dixit is the card game they would start playing that would get you whispering “Man, why doesn’t that exist in real life.”

But Dixit is as real as it gets, and you should have a good long think about buying it.


Review: Escape from the Aliens in Outer Space

review, Escape from the Aliens in Outer Space, spreading the love, Halloween
Review: Escape from the Aliens in Outer Space
Quinns:We didn’t provide the most glowing of reviews in our recent Halloween Special, which raises a question. What would we actually choose to play on Halloween here at &SD?

Absolute no brainer. Say hello to Escape from the Aliens in Outer Space. Not only is it much smaller and cheaper than Arkham Horror, while Arkham has a grim setting, this game is genuinely horrible.

All you’ll find in the box is a thin handful of cards, a handful of black and white paper maps and a second handful of pencils, but what the game achieves with them… it’s just alchemy.


It’s Out: The Summoner Wars Master Set

Excitement, Summoner Wars, Tundle, Mugglugg
It's Out: The Summoner Wars Master Set
Oh my GOODNESS! If you’ve watched Episode 3: Civil Surface you’ll have seen us squeaking about a great little two-player game called Summoner Wars. Well, it’s just gained some weight. The luxurious Master Set is now on sale, containing everything you need to play, a “premium board" (read: an actual board) and six all-new races to play.

Prior to this your only option for getting involved with Summoner Wars was to buy a Starter Set containing a couple of races and a paper disasterpiece of a playing mat. Whether our review of Summoner Wars piqued your interest or you’ve invested in your first decks, you’ll probably be wanting this.


Review: Black Gold

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Review: Black Gold
Quinns: We know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking “SU&SD, what I really want is a board game about being an oil prospector, except with all the tension and exclusively brutal interaction of a wrestling match.” Well today’s your lucky day!We’re reviewing Black Gold, a game of racing across Texas in a pick-up truck, trying to build wells before your opponents, as well as fierce, arena-like auctions where everyone bids for the right to sell their oil. There Will Be Blood? Yes. Yes, there will.

Paul: You know what? This is the sort of game I wish Monopoly was. A capitalist, pugilist slugging-it-out where the only thing that matters is money and how much of it you can wrench out of the hands of others. And it doesn’t have disgusting paper notes in, either, so that’s another pro. I’m not really sure there will be blood, but there will be a lot of oil and an awful lot of very cruel business practices…


Review: Fury of Dracula

review, Fury of Dracula, Quinns' box nightmare, hunting the elderly
Review: Fury of Dracula
Quinns: Did you ever play hide and seek as a kid? Do you remember the hysterical thrill of wedging yourself under the bed, trying to control the unbelievable noise of your own lungs? Or being the hunter, creeping through a familiar environment with carbonated anticipation tingling along your veins? Because I’m inclined to call board game Fury of Dracula hide and seek for adults. This is a beautiful, beautiful game, and it deserves a place in houses the world over.

Paul: I didn’t have anywhere exciting to hide as a child or very many people to play with anyway. But we did play a game called Nine Nine In on our school field, which involved-

Quinns: FURY OF DRACULA sees four players each controlling a vampire hunter chasing Dracula across Europe. It’s a glossy update of a classic called Scotland Yard, which was a board game about catching a runaway criminal in London, but here a fifth player gets to control the immortal Count Dracula rather than some greasy burglar, so it’s already the better game.


Review: Zombies!!!

review, Zombies, Brains, excessive use of exclamation marks
Review: Zombies!!!
We’ve reviewed a lot of smart games lately, a lot of intricate and very
cleverly designed ones. Let me tell you, we have some even smarter and
even bigger ones coming too, with all sorts of clever twists, but
sometimes size isn’t everything. Sometimes smarts aren’t everything,
either. It’s not always about brains, you know.

Unless, of course, you’re playing Zombies, in which case it really is
about brains. Brains and bullets and using the bullets to keep your
brains where God intended. Sure, you can try and tell those wandering
cadavers that brains are overrated, that they should consider a
vegetarian option, but it’s really very difficult to engage them in any
kind of extended dialogue. Because they’re dead.


Review: Condottiere

treachery, condottiere, card games, spreading the love, review
Review: Condottiere
It says right there on the Shut Up & Sit Down About page that we love games that’ll let us do a bit of scowling. Well, packed within Condottiere’s tiny box* are more scowls than in a whole month of Mondays. Feel like buying yourself a cheeky little game this week? This is the one. This game? It’s a gem.

Our guide to: Rules Explanations

board games, spreading the love, card games, regulations, guide
Our guide to: Rules Explanations
Quinns: The other day I was perched on a windowsill and talking to myself. Nothing strange there, then, but what’s (comparably) interesting is what I was saying to myself. I was explaining the rules of a card game, as if to a group of first-time players. I had people coming over that evening and I wanted to make sure I could explain the rules as smoothly and quickly as possible.

Is this something you’ve ever done? Does it sound crazy to you, rehearsing a rules explanation? Well, look here. You wouldn’t invite over a group of friends only to have them find you sprawled on the sofa in your dressing gown, a hint of your genitals barely visible like some cowardly and as-yet uncatalogued subterranean mammal, would you? No. You respect these people too much to let them see you in such an embarrassing state of unpreparedness. So you should also respect them enough to be able to present those rules like a pro.


Review: Stone Age

board games, review, Stone Age, Frottage
Review: Stone Age
Quinns: We’re positive guys here at SU&SD. If you were to ask us what animal we resemble, it would be a seagull, except a strange, mutant seagull that must tell people about wonderful games. “GAMS,” it would screech as it divebombed children and the elderly alike, its reedy vocal chords inadequate for the task of human pronunciation. “GAMS! GAMS!”

Talking about a game that we don’t like is simply a less useful service than bellowing about one we love. That said, we can, and will, be making exceptions from time to time.

Paul: Wait, wait. What? That we don’t like? I wasn’t told about this.