Last year we presented something never-before-seen in board games. Our Top 25 Board Games, Ever was a list of our most favourite games ordered from least-most favourite to most-most favourite. Ever since then, the SU&SD Supercomputer has been calculating a method by which we could possibly top this. Last week, it provided a schematic for something... incredible.
The science behind the following Top 50 is complicated, but in layman's terms we'll be "publishing" "instalments" every day this week, and beyond(!).
We'll get to the news in a second, I just have to tell you what we've got coming in the next two weeks, because I couldn't be more excited.
Just to start, we're playing the biggest UK Megagame EVER this weekend, controlling Japan in a game with no less than 47 game masters. We'll be bringing that to you guys as a two-part documentary. Paul's back in the UK this weekend to play it so we'll be recording two (TWO) podcasts. Then we've got reviews of Mysterium, Star Wars: Armada, Imperial Assault and Alchemists all lined up.
My goodness. But let's start, as always, with the humble Games News.
The boys discuss the terrible property investments they made in Last Will and the Getting Sacked expansion, Matt makes fun of Quintin's horrible estate in
Castles of Mad King Ludwig, before finally the boys discuss how being tall makes it harder to build pagodas in Pagoda.
In the game, each player starts with a simple foyer. One player takes on the role of the Master Builder, and that player sets prices for a set of rooms that can be purchased by the other players, with him getting to pick from the leftovers after the other players have paid him for their rooms. When a room is added to a castle, the player who built it gains castle points based on the size and type of room constructed, as well as bonus points based on the location of the room. When a room is completed, with all entranceways leading to other rooms in the castle, the player receives one of seven special rewards.
After each purchasing round, a new player becomes the Master Builder who sets prices for a new set of rooms. After several rounds, the game ends, then additional points are awarded for achieving bonus goals, having the most popular rooms, and being the most responsive to the King's demands, which change each game. Whoever ends up with the most castle points wins.
I know about the original Feng Shui because of the time my friend was breathlessly espousing one of the mechanics. Your character is more likely to pass a check if they're doing something ludicrous. So, shooting two bad guys is a harder check to pass than throwing a bottle between them, then shooting it so it explodes. Or dodging a falling rock is harder than uppercutting it in half.
If that hasn't sold you on it, I'm not sure there's anything else I could say. But I'll try!
Once again our top story is the one with the prettiest image, again proving that SU&SD is as shallow and corrupt as a dwarven bidet. What you see above is Realm of Wonder, an upcoming Finnish game that's caught the attention of indefatigable outlet BoardGameGeek News. Each player controls a fantasy character trying to complete a secret objective, then return to the king's castle.
But there are problems! The two innermost continents of the board can be physically rotated, locking new paths in place and (hopefully) leaving your friends stranded in some faerie bog. And while Realm of Wonder can be played with young children, advanced rules add bluffing, the claiming of resource pools, magic spells, monstrous combat and the fantasy equivalent of road blocks.
I see a man... I see Ted Alspach, designer of the incredible Suburbia and One Night Werewolf. He's announcing his new game! Castles of Mad King Ludwig will still have players laying tiles, but now sleepy suburbs are swapped for the colourful castles for real-life king Ludwig II.
I can also see that this very second, Ted is eating a burger with a knife and fork. Really, dude? C'mon. Cut that out.