Matt: Contrary to popular belief, I am not a man of infinite luxury. Paul has an entire cupboard just for games - Quintin has a cavernous loft to explore. Many have climbed that ladder and never been seen alive again, fading away to become a new addition to the dark and dusty collage of cardboard and bones. Basically those boys have space to play with. I however, have a shelf.
But it’s a big shelf! Oh my. There’s plenty of room in the rest of my flat, but my wife is a bit of a cheery dictator when it comes to interior design - so the sins of the husband must be tidied away. It’s occasionally annoying, but it does mean I get to live in a genuinely beautiful, tidy place? Swings and roundabouts, life is compromise.
I refuse to have any more dead on my hands.
There are tons of hidden identity thingers to choose from these days, but what sets Mascarade apart from the crowd is the fact that you're often not sure of who YOU are, let alone who everyone else might be. Taking a look at your card takes your whole turn so I'M THE BLOODY KING becomes I'M THE BLOODY KING, PROBABLY.
The general gist of all this chaotic magic is probably best expressed in my aforementioned video, so if you're totally clueless seep that into your face and then come back to absorb my thoughts on the new, first expansion - because for reasons I'll make clear shortly this may be a good time to go all-in and buy both.
Let's see what golden games we're squawking about today, eh?
Appearing one miserable month after our glowing re-review of the X-Wing Miniatures Game, Star Wars: Armada will offer some strikingly similar 2 player space battles, but EMBIGGENED. The profoundly personal pilot management of X-Wing replaced with cumbersome capital ships and whole, abstracted squads of fighter craft.
Does your brother want to play Twilight Imperium for eight hours? Does your dad understand how the Ambush card works in Memoir ‘44? Will your mum flip the table again if she loses another game of Space Hulk?
Here, then, are Shut Up & Sit Down’s recommendations for games your family can play at Christmas. These are all games with rules you can learn in just a few minutes, and won’t keep you returning to the manual. Some are simple, some are smart, some are physical and some are outright dangerous. But they’re all terribly, terribly good fun.
This month he's encouraging us to don the masks of the fabulous Mascarade by Bruno Faidutti, one of our favourite designers. This game is pretty. It's funny. It's simple. Most of it even occurs underneath the table. But most excitingly of all, Matt's baking again! Today is a good day.
In our eighth instalment Paul and Quinns are joined by Matt Lees as they thoroughly deconstruct Egypt simulator Kemet, senile dementia simulator Mascarade, and Police Precinct! Which simulates literally no policemen or women who have ever existed.
*Rejected adjectives for this analogy: Lukewarm, creamy, gassy.