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Tabletop Games, Simplified. Building, Painting, reviews, and tools of the hobby. We cover tabletop miniatures games from Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, Bolt Action, to Warmachine and much more. Pull up a seat, pick up the brush and sit back for some tools and rules with us fools! We have fun at the table!
 
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The apocalypse has finally come. After the breakdown of society, survivors have formed gangs of motorheads, that scour the wasteland for rare and very precious petrol reserves. Their vehicles are highly tricked-out, finely tuned, heavily reinforced and equipped with a wide range of weapons. They will stop at nothing, which is exactly why a small nu…
 
I enjoy games with quite a wide range of playing times. I like long games that take a couple of hours or more to play, up to a certain point at least. Anything above three hours is probably going to be too long for me. I also love quick games that take 15 minutes to half an hour, but I'm definitely not a fan of real-time games. In this article, I w…
 
A great fire engulfed the Whelming Matches factory. All the water in the world couldn't put it out, so hot it burned. When the flames eventually died down many hours later, one artefact was found among the glowing embers. It was cold to the touch and nobody knew what it was. Maybe it was one of the Matches by Daniel McKinley from Thing 12 Games. Re…
 
Yota Suzuki is a board game artist and UI designer. He created Tactical Games in 2017 and loves working with other artists to create the best results possible. Read the audio transcript here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/11/16/yota-suzuki-let-me-illustrate/ If you want to support this podcast financially, please check out the links below: Pat…
 
I have often heard that board game reviews should talk about the price of games. If a review tries to help people make a buying decision, then that makes perfect sense. After all, the best game in the world may still just be too expensive and a game that's free may still not be worth it. Of course, there are many steps in between. So how much a gam…
 
Sailing the winds in your sky pirate ship, you and your crew land on a different island each day, looking for treasure, adventure and glory. You need to be fast though, because you're not alone. Other ships in the fleet have followed the same course and they want their share of the varied loot. If the crew member you send to the island is too slow,…
 
As many of you probably know, I am a very visual person. I love it when rulebooks are well laid out and have helpful photos that show how something works. The graphic design of game and player boards is also something I think is very important. A good choice of clear icons can really help with understanding how a game works and speed up the flow of…
 
History was an interesting place for all of us. We recognized a number of famous figures, while some were new to us. As we travelled through the ages, we encountered new people and learned about different events. Some eras were more familiar than others. Our aim was to be the first to reach the present day. We all took part in A Race in Time from H…
 
Everyone in our hobby loves playing board games. That's by definition, of course. Additionally, there are a lot of board game adjacent hobbies that many of us enjoy, such as miniature painting, card collecting or trading, finding wonderful and usual dice and so much more. However, I think there is something else that many of us really enjoy doing a…
 
It was soon time for the most anticipated festival at Death School, whose motto was "Soul to win". According to legend, there was an accident at the school many years ago. Somehow numerous souls had been able to escape, and the teachers and students raced to recapture them all. Every year hence, Papa Death, Osiris, Hei and Bai Wuchang lead the stud…
 
The following article was written by Joe Slack from the Board Game Design Course. Hey there. It's Joe Slack from the Board Game Design Course. Oliver was kind enough to let me return and write another guest post on his blog, this time about realtime games and the experience that they deliver. I hope you enjoy the article! Read the full article here…
 
The Nostromo was returning to Earth with a seven-member crew in stasis. Detecting a transmission from a nearby moon, the ship's computer awakens the crew and they land on the moon. While one part of the crew tracks down the source of the signal, the rest decipher part of the transmission and discover it's a warning - but it's too late! Despite prot…
 
Growing up in Germany, I started playing traditional trick-taking games like Skat or Doppelkopf from a relatively young age. I'm used to the idea of suits, trump, following suit, taking tricks, gleaning information from what cards others play and much more. Traditional trick-taking games sort of have their own language. So I love to see modern game…
 
Natural resources had long been depleted on Earth, but the asteroid belt was rich in ion and ore. The battle for control of these invaluable commodities had begun. We were part of this fight and were operating from our own Outpost 18 by Adam Wilk. Read the full review here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/10/15/outpost-18-saturday-review/ Useful…
 
I often play games with my wife. We have a fair few two-player-only games, but mostly we play games that were designed for two people or more. Some games do it really well and the experience is no different to higher player counts. Other games introduce two-player-specific setup or other rules and that can work too. In this article, I want to look …
 
Changing your plumage from pure white to a rainbow of colours wasn't easy. It took time and patience. It was the fruit from the rainbow tree that contained the necessary pigment. Unfortunately, the fruit wasn't always in season and when it was, other birds were quick to eat it before I had a chance to get to it. It was a race, be it a slow and thou…
 
So sometimes you play a game and you just don't get on with it. That's understandable, because not every game is for everyone. At the same time, I do think there is a game for everyone. I also think that games deserve a second chance. In this article, I want to look at why we might bounce off games and why the game experience is a lot better when w…
 
The Great Plague was slowly becoming a thing of the past and you had decided to move into the country and start a new village. You had found the perfect location that was big enough to build new houses, workshops and other structures, while also being close enough to farmable land, a large wooded area and there were indications that coal could be m…
 
Nobody likes losing. Most of us don't mind it, but I don't think anyone actually relishes it when they come last. When we play board games with others, we want to have an enjoyable time. That's something we should keep in mind. So in this article, I want to talk about how to try and be a good loser. Read the full article here: https://tabletopgames…
 
After Earth had been mostly laid to waste, major corporations took charge and colonized much of the solar system. Interplanetary trade was the only source of money and therefore power. Earth's few remaining societies still held a fair amount of political influence, but controlling as many of the independent planetary parliaments as possible was pro…
 
For some of us, not being able to see friends or family, or anyone else for that matter, in person is becoming a distant memory. I appreciate that for some of you, it's still very much the present, depending on where you are in the world or the health of the people you would otherwise meet, you live with or your own. In this article, I want to writ…
 
"Afloat, upon the surface of a smooth and silent river, slowly breathing, you observe the shifting currents [...]. There is little much to do, but let the river take you. Surrendering to its flow, slowly you realise that perhaps there is no separation between surface and sky, between your mind and the river itself and if your mind is the river and …
 
In many modern board games, all players participate until the very end. Everyone continues to take their turns until the game has finished and it's time to decide the winner or winners. That's true for co-operative as well as competitive games. Player elimination games are very different in that respect. In these games, some people around the table…
 
A game about dancing sheep, rockets, lasers, cabbages and sometimes fun. I would like to add "death" to this list, but other than that, it's pretty much a good description of 3 Minutes to Freedom (or Death) by Samuel Edmondson and Daniel Somerville Roberts from Icarus Games. Read the full review here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/09/10/3-minu…
 
Here is another article in my series about teaching games. Last time I spoke about the responsibilities the person has who teaches the game. This time I want to cover what is expected of the people learning the game. After all, the teacher will not get anywhere if no one is willing to actually learn the game. So, as a learner there are certain thin…
 
It was hard to get the favour of the Emperor. Many noble houses were vying for their attention by offering their resources and manual labour to help restore the Emperor's wonderful monuments. As a way to remember the work everyone did and to honour the grace and power of the Emperor, artists were commissioned to create beautiful paintings. It was y…
 
Continuing my series of articles about teaching games, in this article I want to talk about what responsibilities the teacher has. It's not always obvious, but when you teach a game, you're not done after explaining the rules to the group. You have to continue to keep an eye on things, to make sure everyone plays correctly. You also have to be read…
 
The Durrani Empire had just collapsed and large swathes of Central Asia had fallen into disarray. It was an ideal opportunity for the ferengi to impose their power over the region and fight out their rivalries somewhere far away from their daily politics. The foreigners were completely unaware of how the local Afghan leaders were manipulating them …
 
Depth in board games is often confused with complexity. They are related, but they're also very different. I wrote a whole article about complexity about two years ago. So now it's time for me to look at depth in more detail. Read the full article here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/08/23/the-deep-blue-depth-in-board-games-topic-discussion/ Us…
 
I wasn't sure what it was. It was certainly yellow. Maybe it was a banana. Or it was a pencil. Actually, it could have even been a lemon. I just couldn't remember. There were just too many cards on the table. I wish I could Recollect from Pikkii. Read the full review here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/08/20/recollect-saturday-review/ Useful L…
 
It's been a long-standing tradition in the board game hobby to show others your lovely collection. People love posting photos of their board game shelves. It's no surprise really. People are proud of the games they've got. Some of the games in your collection will be rarities, they might be out of print, maybe you have games signed by the designer …
 
A brand new greenfield site was ready for development. The architects had submitted their drawings and the planners were satisfied that everything was in order. Everyone was in agreement that this new place should grow organically, but had to follow strict rules. New houses could only be placed in certain ways to create this brand new Town 66 by Ch…
 
It's always interesting to see how different games decide when they end. There are so many different ways of ending a game. Some games are played over a fixed number of rounds and others end when a certain goal or goals are achieved. There are also games that have a slightly more random timer. What happens when a game ends is also not always the sa…
 
As an artist, I knew this was going to be a challenging project. Making stained glass window masterpieces required clever and careful planning and meticulous execution. The prospect of having one of your pieces be seen by people around the world was a daunting prospect, but working for such a prestigious family made up for it. I was honoured to be …
 
Reviewing board games is something I take quite seriously. It's important to me that people reading my reviews know that what they read are my own, independent thoughts. I also want to ensure that my views properly reflect my experience of a game. I want my reviews to be relatively thorough and a fair assessment of the game. In this article, I want…
 
It was a glorious time of progress, industry and opportunity. The turn of the 20th century promised so much and if you were flush with cash, there were plenty of opportunities to invest and reap huge rewards. That was especially true for the railroad industry in the United States. In one place alone, there were five companies working together to bu…
 
The goal of board game reviews is to give the reader the information they need to make a decision about whether a game is for them or not. Reviews are always going to be subjective and people may agree with them or they may not - or most likely they'll agree with some things and not others. Either way, reviews have to convey what a game is like, fr…
 
We had just landed in Normandy. It was the summer of 1944, but it was relatively cold. We were thousands of miles from home and the landscape was unknown to us. Yet, we had to push deeper into a country we didn't know in our goal to push the German forces out of France. There was regular machine gun fire and mortar bombardment. It was really scary,…
 
I think a lot of people in the board game hobby play together for fun and for the social aspect. Sure, many of us want to win the game. We don't play to lose. However, I think only very few people are hugely competitive. Playing board games is more of a hobby. In this article, I look at different ways of improving your game and what it might take t…
 
It was a beautiful day. The sea was calm and the sun was shining. The water was crystal clear and even while you were sitting on the side of the boat, in your full diving gear, you could see the corals and wonderful sea creatures in the water. You knew it was going to be a long day and you would probably split it into two or three dives. You did on…
 
As we know, and as I always say, there are so many games, chances are there is something for everyone. Not only that, there will be games for all sorts of different types and sizes of groups. That has always been true for family games that can be enjoyed by a wide range of ages and interests. In this article, I want to look at what it is I enjoy so…
 
I thought long and hard about how to start this review. Usually, the introductory paragraph of my reviews is like a short story, setting the scene of the game and the experience you're likely to get. I finish by linking back to the title of the game, making it part of the short story. Yet, for this game, its name is a little short story in itself. …
 
I like heavy games a lot. Games that take around 2 hours to play are probably also the favourites in my games group. Sure, you need to spend an hour learning them, then probably half an hour teaching them to the group and then two or more hours playing them - but as a reward, your brain gets a full workout. At the same time, there are also many rea…
 
Finally, the baton of ringmaster has been passed to you. Your predecessor has been in the job for many decades, but now it's your turn. You need to get the most out of the motley crew of performers and put together a show that will beat your rivals'. Yet, immediately it becomes clear that you need to bring in new talent to make your circus really s…
 
I love playing board or card games with my wife. Spending a little, or a lot of time together focused on the same activity is a wonderful way to connect. It started as a date night, but now we might play a quick 5-10 minute game or two over lunch or we play a longer game. Co-operative games tend to be our favourite. Working together to solve the pu…
 
Waking up from an uneasy sleep, you look around. You aren't quite sure where you are or how you got here. There is moonlight streaming through the small, barred window. It looks like you're in some sort of cell, but you're not chained up or otherwise restrained unlike the skeleton opposite you. There is only one thing for it. You have to find a way…
 
As you probably know by now, I'm a very visual person. I love great illustrations in board games, hence my series "Let me illustrate" highlighting board game artists in the industry. At the same time, a board game with an amazing look alone is not enough. The gameplay needs to be great too and the rules must not be more complicated than necessary f…
 
Waking up from years of hibernation, all of us were a bit dazed and confused. Temporary amnesia was very common and while we all knew our names, we only had some basic memories of what had happened before or what we were meant to do. We weren't even sure which ship we were on, let alone its layout. When we saw that one of our colleagues was dead an…
 
The genre of roll-and-something or something-and-write or whatever else there is these days has really grown in the last few years. To start with, there was a deluge of Yahtzee-style games, but soon the genre added themes and settings to try and draw people in and make them feel like they were exploring a map or fighting monsters. In this article, …
 
The UK Games Expo is the largest hobby games convention in the United Kingdom. It covers all types of hobby games, including board games, card games, RPGs, war games and many, many more. After a break of a couple of years, I was finally ready to make my way up to the NEC, Birmingham again in 2022. However, this time, a friend from my games group jo…
 
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