RogerBW's Blog

UK Games Expo 2019: Saturday 09 June 2019

This was the most hectic day, with the halls heaving at times; even Friday had felt like previous years' Saturdays.

But we started the day with a gentle game of Kingdomino outside.

That was one Nick had brought with him. The first new game was Sensor Ghosts, from the designer of Assembly: you're trying to navigate your ship across space, but the malevolent AI is lying to you about what's where. It's not very thematic but it was a neat puzzle, and I could certainly see myself getting this when it's available.

Blame Space was our next demo, in which you're trying to come out of a terrible situation looking good, or at least least bad… in space. The game we played was probably about the right length; I could see it outstaying its welcome like Munchkin or Fluxx. But I enjoyed it enough to buy a copy.

Back to the demo table, and I ran a bit of Kodama Duo. But, clearly thanks to my amazing demonstrating efforts on Friday, we'd sold out – not just our stand, the entire show, of both this and original Kodama – so I moved on to other things.

Specifically, those were Pirate 21 (a filler that I like probably more than it deserves, a "midlist" game in an industry that's increasingly pushed by the top sellers), Coup (one of the games that got me into this hobby and one I still love), and even Terraforming Mars (which I still don't really like all that much, but I was able to show people how the card synergies worked and generally what the game was like).

I met Lizzie my occasional partner for Our Turn Podcast, and we tried out Lanterns Dice: Lights in the Sky, a roll-and-write version of Lanterns. I… suppose I can see the appeal, but I certainly don't picture myself owning this; it is what it is, but for me that's too long and fiddly for a casual game and too light for a long game. (Also, people with colour vision deficits would struggle here.)

Off to the 1 Player Guild meeting, and The Captain Is Dead, which seemed to start off quite well… but we got some very bad orange alerts quite early on in that stack, and while we were close at times we didn't really have much chance. (I can see that one wants the details of the alerts to be unpredictable – though it's already a very reactive game – but I feel there should be a better way of doing it. Maybe a nastiness rating on the alert, that gives you a variable bonus when responding to it?)

Timo had bought Cogs and Commissars, in which you aim to collect citizens and then start a Soviet robot revolution (by playing cards from your custom deck); with six players, it ended with a victory on the eighth (I think) player turn, which suggests that either we were playing it wrong or it's a bit broken.

On to burgers! (Yes, the Hilton still can't provide food that people want to pay for. No, next year's Eastercon is not planning to get food trucks in the way Expo does.)

Back to Not Alone; I hadn't tried the two-player version before, and it came out very close.

Then Flamme Rouge with five players and both expansions, in which I pulled off a very tight second place (and a frankly less tight fourth).

And so to bed.

[Buy Kingdomino at Amazon] [Buy Blame Space at Amazon] [Buy Kodama Duo at Amazon] [Buy Pirate 21 at Amazon] [Buy Coup at Amazon] [Buy Terraforming Mars at Amazon] [Buy The Captain Is Dead at Amazon] [Buy Cogs and Commissars at Amazon] [Buy Not Alone at Amazon] [Buy Flamme Rouge at Amazon] and help support the blog.

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