All posts by Tony McRee

I have been playing board games for as long as I can remember. When the summer heat in North Carolina was too much to be outside, we would retreat to playing games inside. My favorite game was Stratego but always loved the new, especially when things went electronic with Stop Thief. Even in later years, games would continue to be a major part of my life, none more that APBA Pro Baseball. Outside of gaming, I enjoy playing all sports but the current favorite is disc golf. There are some incredible courses in the area and a ever growing disc golf community keeps them in great shape. Whenever time permits, I will break out a game and play with family and friends and I get great enjoyment out of teaching new games to others though I don't do it worth squat. My favorite types of games are those that promote a fairly fast style of play and can be done in under two hours. My least favorite games are those that promote analysis paralysis by the players or promote large amounts of downtime waiting on other players. I am currently co-hosting a podcast at

RDTN Episode 216: Beyond The Sun, Red Cathedral, New York Zoo, Blood Bowl, Little Red vs Beowulf

00:00 Intro
02:55 Mountain Dew Merry Mashup Taste Test
06:42 Reprimanded by a Mall Cop
12:45 Arkham Horror Live Play on Twitch
13:45 Blood Bowl Second Season First Impressions
24:30 Tony teaches Lord of the Rings: Journeys in Middle-Earth
27:30 Pillars of the Earth is back on the table
29:30 Marty’s family plays Hint
33:10 New York Zoo impressions
40:30 Monopoly Blind Box Tokens?
47:15 The Broken Token
49:20 The Red Cathedral
1:03:00 Portal Games
1:05:05 Beyond The Sun
1:20:15 Online Strike Tournament
1:21:45 Unmatched: Little Red Riding Hood vs Beowulf
1:28:00 Tony modifies the rules for finding episode mistakes
1:30:55 Marty gets a Mesh Network thanks to a listener
1:36:50 Miniature Market

We have been playing a few games from Rio Grande lately and Beyond The Sun was probably we liked the most of the group. It involved a tech tree and that is something we always enjoy in a game. However, it doesn’t center on the tech tree, you have to utilize the explore and colonization of the planet board if you are going to win. There is a balance between how much technology you want to discover versus how much exploration you need to do. It is important that you pick the technologies that can benefit your strategy to win but don’t get bogged down over on that board. And the game is going to offer you replay ability because the tech trees will change every game even though the cards in the deck don’t. The planet board is visually pleasing but the tech board is bland. However the cards are very easy to read and understand, a great plus for the game.

Then out of the blue comes a game that is another real thinker, Red Cathedral. If you enjoy rondel games and ones where you need to plan steps well in advance, then take a look at this game. Unfortunately, the planning must wait on other player’s turns, but you can have a good idea of the strategy you want to deploy on your turn. But you better have a other plans ready in order to get to your final objective. With new players, be sure they understand the scoring at the end because that can be confusing.

There is a special episode that is being released this week, but it is short, we promise because there isn’t a bunch of time to edit.

Then we will release our last episode of the year with special opportunities at prizes and as always, the RDTN Survey will be available for you to tell us what we did wrong and what we might have done right. If you want to get a head start on it, here is a link

RDTN Episode 215: Dune Imperium, Shores of Tripoli, Lord of the Rings Anniversary Edition, Blue Skies

00:00 Intro
08:32 Blue Skies
19:45 Join Marty on Twitch
26:18 Marvel Champions Ant Man
30:25 Crafting Time
32:33 1 or 2 or 3 Tokens
36:55 Miniature Market
38:35 Dune Imperium
1:08:19 Portal Games
1:10:25 Lord of the Rings Anniversary Edition
1:15:25 FFG splitting off Miniatures
1:18:55 CMON new Animation Games
1:21:15 Toy Hall of Fame Revisit
1:26:02 Shores of Tripoli
1:32:00 Outro
1:39:43 The Broken Token

Dune Imperium from Dire Wolf is the next big Deck Builder that is out for this year. The key difference with this game is you are trying to gain 10 victory points which will trigger the end of the game. You are not just trying gather the most victory points or beat down your opponents. You’re placing agents on the board having them to perform actions that allow you to either gather resources or dispatch troops in your garrison so they can compete in a conflict.  The cards in your hands will dictate where you can place your agents on the board and once used, cannot be used to purchase cards from the supplies. Tough decisions will need to be made on how to use your hand of cards. This game can be tense at times and you will have moments where other players will ruin your plans by beating you to get points on the board.

LOTR is a classic cooperative game that is simple to play but is going to beat you more than let you win. The person we played with stated that in all his plays, he has yet to win. I would be surprised if that as you near the end of the game and winning is in your grasp, one miscalculation in card play could be the doom of the fellowship. Probably one item that will turn people off is the player elimination, so be sure you are aware of that.

Shores of Tripoli, touch to find right now, is a solid two player game that provides strategic card play and the luck of the dice. If you wanted a little bit more randomness that what was afford in Watergate, then consider playing this one if you can find a copy. If you think about it, ship battles during that time were kind of random. Shooting canons at moving targets in open water was a challenge.

Blue Skies from Rio Grande is a introductory area control game where you must strategically decide how to adjust victory points of the other players based on the gates you claim at airports and the passenger cards you play. This game can suffer from a runaway leader if not kept in check by the other players, so you need to be aware of how people are managing their gates as well as their control.

Thanks for listening and as the year comes to a close, we will once again be doing a survey to help us make 2021 the best year for background noise.

RDTN Episode 213: Lost Ruins of Arnak, Tawantinsuyu,Tekhenu, Deep State, World of Tanks

00:00 Intro
04:25 Listicuffs Appearance
10:09 Sean Connery
13:34 World of Tanks from Gail Force Nine
21:40 Warcry Skaven Army
22:50 Secret Squirrel
26:08 Deep State
33:52 Ice Cream Social no more
36:07 Portal Games
38:10 Lost Ruins of Arnak
55:00 The Broken Token
56:31 Flying Squirrels
58:21 Clea Switch Game
1:00:37 Political Mail
1:02:50 Warchief Gaming
1:04:34 The Crew
1:06:24 Campaign Games – Enough
1:08:12 Lawnmowing Playlist
1:10:30 Tekhenu and Tawantinsuyu
1:36:47 Outro
1:45:12 Miniature Market

Truly believe that the Lost Ruins of Arnak should be added to your shelves if you enjoy Clank. This game requires manipulating card combos that allow for you to gain resources that give the ability to generate end game victory points. You have to have a solid strategy as cards are revealed. You will need to make some hard decisions as you try and figure out what is the best payoff in the limited turns that you have in this game. Hope you get a chance to play this.

Tekhenu and Tawantinsuyu are games that will overwhelm at first and are not ones that after the first play you will feel like you played your best. These games are the ones that make you go back and wonder if you had just done this, would you have done better. If you enjoy games with dice that are meant to control decisions, then Tekhenu is something worth considering but be ready for a involved teach. Tawantinsuyu has a great player aid and while things are right before you, how it all comes together may take some time and multiple plays. Both games are a challenge and we have our favorite between the two, but that is just preference of the mechanics.