Category Archives: Reviews

RDTN Episode 172: Hadara, Pandemic Rapid Response, 51st State Allies, Shadowrun 6th Edition

While I enjoy Imperial Settlers from Portal, I will admit that 51st State is my favorite of the two. Don’t get me wrong, not saying that one is better than the other, but as I stated in the show, I know that 51st is the easier to teach to people because you only have one deck which is why it will edge out Imperial. Once those I am teaching get the core concepts down, then I can introduce Imperial to them with the multiple races and asymmetric play that it brings to the table. But back to Allies, the next expansion to 51st State. Does the expansion Allies provide anything new and different to the game? Yes it does. It brings ways to eliminate the need to convert resources to the tokens needed to put buildings and deals into play. Which for me, seems to speed up the game play. I think it would be best if this is the only expansion you use in the game so you can take advantage of the cards and not have them buried along with the other expansions. You know how some expansions seem to migrate into the base game? I think Allies will be one of those expansions.

Z-Man Games has a new Civ-type game coming out called Hadara. At first play, this might be thought of a very light game and in my opinion, it is. But that doesn’t make it bad in any respect, just need to know that this isn’t going to be a complex game. Matter of fact, the strategy occurs during the drawing of the cards. The deciding of what to keep and let others have a chance at in the Phase B of the game is very important. Do you take the lesser of the two cards being offered in hopes that you might score them both. Some very key decisions are made at this time during the game. The speed of play was also a big plus for me in this game, enjoyed how quickly it moved. Just understand that this is a lighter game and don’t expect a big thinker.

Then we put Pandemic Rapid Response on the table and you could see the dynamics of the group change. Here is a game where being right isn’t always necessary and agonizing over your move cannot be done. Roll dice, take actions, move to the next player and go fast, that is what you need to know here. While it isn’t my cup of tea, I did enjoy this breath of fresh air on the table. If you are going to agonize over your play, then you are doomed in this game. I think the chaotic nature of this game with the right group of people would be a blast. The screaming and yelling and the communication on what to do next happening all at the same time can be a fun way to get the evening going. I would actually use this game with people at work to help teach them about Incident Command and how it is necessary when dealing with a crisis.

Three of the three Connell boys jump on the mics and explorer the 6th Edition of Shadowrun RPG by Catalyst Games. Thank goodness they took charge of this and shared their knowledge and experience because I am not sure I would have been able to bring much to the table. Adam and Travis have some key insights to this revamp and from what I heard previewing the episode, Marty enjoyed it and is looking forward to more adventures in this world.

But that isn’t the last you hear from them, because Adam and Travis are back to talk about Super Punch Fighter. Based on what I heard, Marty better bring it to game night so I can take a shot at playing it just so I can make my own opinion of the game.

If you will be at Gen Con this year and have nothing to do at 7pm on Thursday, consider buying a ticket for the RDTN Strike Tournament Dinner event at the Old Spaghetti Factory. We had a blast last year and hope that you will consider spending time with us.

Thanks for listening and we will be back in two weeks with another episode of background noise.

And don’t forget about the Smash Up contest.

Time Segment
00:42 Intro
08:01 51st State: Allies
18:00 YouTube Reaction Videos
25:25 RIP Tim Conway
28:25 Portal Games
30:04 Hadara
35:43 Proving Grounds On Hold
37:10 Pandemic Rapid Response
42:57 The Broken Token
44:23 Shadowrun 6th Edition
1:12:15 Super Punch Fighter
1:18:00 Outro
1:18:55 Contest Smash Up
1:22:56 Strike Tournament Gen Con
1:27:56 Game Topper Contest
1:31:37 Miniature Market

RDTN Episode 171: Star Wars Outer Rim, Nagaraja, and Silver

One of these days, I am going to get us down below one hour again. But it isn’t going to happen for this show. Nope. We have too much to say about the games we got to play recently.

First off is Silver from Bezier Games. Sure you have heard it from other groups, but we wanted to give you our take on this simple card game that is very similar to Golf. But what is going to set it apart from Golf are the card actions that you can do and the action of replacing two or more of the same cards with a single card. The simple game of Golf is now full of interaction, strategy, and tension. This is one of those you might need to just keep in your game bag so you have something quick to play while waiting on people or to finish the night with. The problem might be that people will keep asking to play one more time. Very enjoyable.

Next is FFG’s Star Wars: Outer Rim. This required us to bring in the Scurry to discuss and dissect this game. While it didn’t jump out the gate at first, it did grow on us. You know how after you play a game, you wonder what was missing and you spend the next 30 minutes or so realizing that had you done this, then this might have enhanced the play. Or if you had changed your tactic at this point, then the game would have amped up even more. That is when you realize that it isn’t the game, it is the fact that the players knowledge is what was missing in the first few plays and this game will only suck you down the strategy hole even more over time.

And lastly, we discuss the new game Nagaraja from Hurrican Games. If you would like to add a Two Player game to your collection, recommend you consider this one. Here is another one that once the play is done, you will start questioning your previous moves and know you will do better next time. The strategy is going to reach up and bite you on this one. I am not trying to scare you away here, because the game is easy to teach, but each decision is important. You wouldn’t think so, but it is. Even the simplest decision can come back and, like I said, bite you later. So much fun. This one is up there with The Rose King for me.

Don’t forget to go out and nominate the next video game for the Hall of Fame and be sure to check out Level3B’s kickstarter on the new game bag.

Time Segment
00:45 Intro
04:55 Deer Repellent
10:20 Bezier Games Silver
26:23 The Broken Token
27:51 Star Wars: Outer Rim
56:28 Origin Award Announcements
1:01:12 Video Game Awards
1:07:29 Nagaraja
1:13:37 Miniature Market
1:14:27 Level 3B Game Canopy Kickstarter
1:17:42 Outro
1:25:52 Portal Games

RDTN Episode 170: Robinson Crusoe Mystery Tales, Res Arcana, Space Base Expansion, Wacky Races, Superfriends

Hope everyone has recovered from the onslaught of Avengers Endgame and Game of Thrones battles and ready to get back to board gaming. We are and this episode puts five games on the table for discussion and two Kickstarters we want to bring to your attention.

Res Arcana is one of those games that you might pass by, but it is one you should give a try if you enjoyed the mechanics that are in Century Spice Road. The premise is straight forward in that you must collect resources that allow you to purchase cards that let you convert those resources into other resources that you can then eventually get victory points. But unlike Century or other games like this, there are unique mechanics in impacting other players, player powers, and cards that can help adjust your strategy during the game.

Then we played a game that fits with the theme of doom from the aforementioned shows above, Robinson Crusoe: Mystery Tales. Solid planning and cooperation are even more essential to winning than in the base game because you are carrying forward your success and failures from the previous adventures. They don’t use the term legacy with this expansion, but I believe it is. We wish you luck with your adventures and hope your team doesn’t go insane and come back to hunt you.

Wacky Races and Challenge of the Superfriends takes us back to our childhoods and watching Saturday morning cartoons so nostalgia runs rampant during this segment. Bear with us because we do talk about the games eventually.

Finally, Marty is joined by Vanessa and Adam and they discuss an expansion to one of our favorite titles from last year, Space Base and the new expansion. Straight from AEG:

  • The Emergence of Shy Pluto is the first installment of Space Base “Saga Expansions”. This expansion to Space Base is a collection of story-based scenarios that introduce new content to the game via a narrative structure. Not only are new ships added, but new scenarios are included as well. Once the story is completed, it may be replayed or the contents may be added to the Space Base base set.

Spoiler Alert: Vanessa really likes it

Thanks for listening and come back in two weeks where we will tell you about the two player game Nagaraja and Star Wars Outer Rim.

Time Segment
00:42 Intro
08:00 Podpledge Announcement
20:37 Raccoon Tycoon Expansion
26:53 Robinson Crusoe: Mystery Tales
30:39 Portal
32:07 Res Arcana
38:05 Wacky Races
46:00 Cartoon Nostalgia
56:09 Challenge of the Superfriends
58:36 Contest Results
1:02:42 The Broken Token
1:03:51 Space Base Expansion
1:13:00 Vorpal Kickstarter
1:16:10 Homage to Ashes
1:18:19 Play By Forum Update
1:21:52 Miniature Market