So Very Wrong About Games
So Very Wrong About Games
Mike Walker & Mark Bigney
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A podcast about all manner of hobby games by Mike Walker and Mark Bigney. Bad games don't go easy on you, so we don't go easy on them. Thorough analysis via reviews, news, and discussion of topics in gaming. We take context seriously, we value your time, and we're not into hype. Just because games are fun doesn't mean we can't take them seriously, and just because we take them seriously doesn't mean we can't have fun.
#140: Reckoning with War
In honour of Arkhipov Day (October 27th--he saved your life or that of your forebears, he deserves a day), we turn to reflections of how games model war. Even themeless euros often include war as a convenient backdrop for the processing of cubes, so it is hardly restricted to one genre of gaming or another. That said, gaming is not unique--pretty much any medium can boast of a plethora of war narratives. 01:17 AYURIS: HATE (Raphaël Guiton, Jean-Baptiste Lullien, Alexandru Olteanu, & Nicolas Raoult, CMON, 2019) Games Played Last Week: 04:41 -Darkest Night (Second Edition) (Jeremy Lennert, Victory Point Games, 2018)10:40 -Quantum (Eric Zimmerman, Funforge, 2013)14:58 -7 Wonders Duel (Antoine Bauza & Bruno Cathala, Repos Production, 2015)15:58 -Lucky Numbers (Michael Schacht, Ravensburger, 2012)16:47 -Keyflower (Sebastian Bleasdale & Richard Breese, R&D Games, 2012)17:03 -The Crew: The Quest for Planet Nine (Thomas Sing, KOSMOS, 2019)17:58 -For What Remains (Paul Low, David Thompson, & Ricardo Manuel Luis Tomas, DVG, 2020)22:27 -Black Rose Wars (Marco Montanaro, Ludus Magnus Studio, 2019) 28:05 -Horizon Wars: Zero Dark (Robey Jenkins, Self-published, 2020)31:53 -Underwater Cities (Vladimír Suchý, Rio Grande Games, 2018)News (and why it doesn't matter):39:35 Finishing Time not ready for prime time41:32 Patreon: sign up for a year and get two months free42:24 October 27th is Arkhipov Day42:29 Topic: Reckoning with War
Oct 20
1 hr 5 min
#139: Fort
I never knew a kid who had any kind of fort. In grade school I heard of a kid who could form Voltron, but that may have been an extravagant lie. My mom's friend's kids had a Sega Genesis, and that was pretty rad. I keep acquiring more games in the vain hope that it will make me popular, but it hasn't worked yet. Maybe one or two more Street Masters expansions will do the trick. I am told to be popular you have to wash your hair at least once every two weeks.Games Played Last Week:02:21 -Black Rose Wars (Marco Montanaro, Ludus Magnus Studio, 2019) 14:07 -ELO Darkness (Tommaso Mondadori & Alberto Parisi, Reggie Games, 2018)17:33 -Sakura Arms (Baka Fire, AEG, 2017)20:23 -Wits & Wagers (Dominic Crapuchettes, North Star Games, 2005)22:06 -Too Many Bones (Adam & Josh Carlson, Chip Theory Games, 2017)27:43 -Nanga Parbat (Steve Finn, Dr. Finn's Games, 2021)30:17 -Scythe (Jamey Stegmaier, Stonemaier Games, 2016)32:19 -Through the Ages: A New Story of Civilization (Vlaada Chvátil, CGE, 2015)34:59 -A Feast for Odin (Uwe Rosenberg, Feuerland Spiele, 2016)37:09 -Pandoria (Jeffrey D. Allers & Bernd Eisenstein, Irongames, 2018)News (and why it doesn't matter):39:42 Street Masters: Tide of the Dragon on Indiegogo41:03 Core Worlds: Empires and new solo mode42:38 Neuroshima Hex! 3.0: Troglodytes jumping the shark?44:11 Horseless Carriage from Splotter44:45 Does Mega-Gargant mean nothing?!?46:06 October 27th is Arkhipov Day46:52 Feature Game: Fort (Grant Rodiek, Leder Games, 2020)
Oct 13
1 hr 4 min
#138: Subliminal Brainwash
The mere framing of a question can subtly or overtly determine the answer. There's an old joke about a monk who asks his superior, "Can I smoke while I meditate?" He is told no, as that would be sullying an act that is meant to be free from worldly concerns. The clever monk decides instead to ask another superior, "While I smoke, can I meditate?" So it is with boardgames! Framing can have tremendous consequences.01:55 AYURIS: XenoShyft: Onslaught (Keren Philosophales & Michael Shinall, CMON, 2015) and Dreadmire (Michael Shinall, CMON, 2017) Games Played Last Week:04:35 -Assault on Doomrock: Doompocalypse (Christopher Niewiadomski & Tom Stasiak, Beautiful Disaster Games, 2017)06:47 -Alma Mater (Acchittocca, Flaminia Brasini, Virginio Gigli, Stefano Luperto, & Antonio Tinto, eggertspiele, 2020)11:50 -Spirit Island: Jagged Earth (R. Eric Reuss, Greater Than Games, 2020)15:13 -Marco Polo II: In the Service of the Khan (Simone Luciani & Daniele Tascini, Hans im Gluck, 2019)17:36 -Inhuman Conditions (Tommy Maranges & Cory O'Brien, Web published, 2018)23:43 -First Class (Helmut Ohley, Hans im Gluck, 2016)26:35 -Argent: Summer Break (Trey Chambers, Level 99 Games, 2014)35:55 -On the Edge (John Nephew & Johnathan Tweet, Atlas Games, 1994)News (and why it doesn't matter):40:23 Sakura Arms from Level 99 Games42:27 Armada by Mantic43:27 Groundhog Day by Prospero Hall44:10 Renegade and Hasbro monetize your childhood: G.I. Joe, Transformers, and My Little Pony44:53 Nerd Alert: First Monday in October46:57 Topic: Subliminal Brainwash
Oct 6
1 hr 3 min
#137: Flotilla
Social standards of behaviour are often subtle and variable, but we can all agree that children are often blind to their subtle nuances. Like, don't be a massive jerk--that's one of those tricky nuances that often escape the notice of your average child, what with many of them being borderline sociopaths kept in check only by their relative powerlessness and incompetence. Then again, perhaps Mark is the sociopath for not being able to tolerate the annoyances of child behaviour. Then again, perhaps both are true, and Mark is merely a giant, sociopathic man-baby. All that said, no human deserves to be subjected to Monopoly.Games Played Last Week:01:20 -Monopoly (Charles Darrow & Elizabeth J. Magie Phillips, Hasbro, 1933)06:55 -Pendulum (Travis P Jones, Stonemaier Games, 2020)16:53 -The Crew: The Quest for Planet 9 (Thomas Sing, KOSMOS, 2019)17:48 -My City (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2020)19:35 -Flick ‘Em Up: Dead of Winter (Gaëtan Beaujannot, Jonathan Gilmour, Jean Yves Monpertuis, & Isaac Vega, Pretzel Games, 2017)21:51 -Cthulhu Wars (Sandy Petersen & Lincoln Petersen, Petersen Games, 2015)24:25 -Pandoria (Jeffrey D. Allers & Bernd Eisenstein, Irongames, 2018)28:06 -For What Remains (Paul Low, David Thompson, & Ricardo Manuel Luis Tomas, DVG Games, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):30:48 HeroQuest, and much history of Hasbro38:14 Quartermaster General: Total War expansion38:42 The Last of Us39:55 GMT makes good on recent errata40:49 Grand Austria Hotel gets grander?41:21 For Sale expansion and Autorama43:14 Dragonland reprint44:15 Feature Game: Flotilla (J.B. Howell & Michael Mihealsick, WizKids, 2019)
Sep 29
1 hr 3 min
#136: Games Based on IPs
Hwaet! The second installment of our much-ignored segment, SVWAG Poetry Corner, takes a turn for the epic. First we did haiku, and now we discuss Old English epic poetry. Sure the noble limerick can't be far behind? We also discuss the most excellent lifestyle habits of our new idol, Kane Tanaka, who seems to be living her best life on her own terms. You go, Kane Tanaka! Rip off some monster's arm or something.01:07 AYRUIS: Concordia (Mac Gerdts, PD-Verlag, 2013) and Concordia Venus (2018) Games Played Last Week:02:27 -For What Remains (Paul Low, David Thompson, & Ricardo Manuel Luis Tomas, DVG Games, 2020)03:36 -Bärenpark (Phil Walker-Harding, Lookout, 2017)05:08 -My City (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2020)06:16 -Forgotten Waters (Mr. Bistro, J. Arthur Ellis, & Isaac Vega, Plaid Hat Games, 2020)12:54 -Sorcerer (Peter Scholtz, White Wizard Games, 2019)15:50 -Cerebria: The Inside World (Richard Amann, & Viktor Peter, Mindclash Games, 2018)18:24 -Alma Mater (Acchittocca, Flaminia Brasini, Virginio Gigli, Stefano Luperto, & Antonio Tinto, eggertspiele, 2020)23:11 -Reykholt (Uwe Rosenberg, Frosted Games, 2018)24:08 -Anachrony (Dávid Turczi, Mindclash Games, 2017)28:18 -Europe Divided (Chris Marling & David Thompson, PHALANX, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):31:38 More Street Masters and more Aftershock woes33:37 Tobago gets a volcano34:56 Do board games make you immortal? The story of Kane Tanaka36:23 Zoch goodness: Kurtz vor Knapp36:58 Topic: Games Based on IPs
Sep 22
1 hr 2 min
#135: Babylonia
Our cup runneth over, if the cup in question is being filled by tiles laid there by Reiner Knizia. Three Knizia tile-laying games were sampled by SVWAG, which of course made it a good week. One feels that if someone proposed a topic of "Reiner Knizia tile-laying games", the appropriate editorial response would be "narrow the scope, please." Games Played Last Week:01:12 -Spirit Island: Jagged Earth (R. Eric Reuss, Greater Than Games, 2020)02:27 -Mariposas (Elizabeth Hargrave, AEG, 2020)07:07 -Tekhenu: Obelisk of the Sun (Daniele Tascini & Dávid Turczi, Board&Dice, 2020)14:37 -Carolus Magnus (Leo Colovini, Rio Grande, 2000)20:04 -My City (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2020)21:48 -Indigo (Reiner Knizia, Ravensburger, 2012)25:27 -Starlink (Markus Slawitscheck & Arno Steinwender, Blue Orange Games, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):29:36 The possible returns of things called HeroQuest and Avalon Hill31:17 Dungeon Fighter returns32:26 Ludonova: Sumatra by Knizia and Polynesia by Peer Sylvester33:36 Where's Waldo the Murderer? MicroMacro: Crime Cityhttps://www.micromacro-game.com/en/index.html36:07 Roll and write claims another victim--Troyes: Dice36:38 Our Patreon: Boss us around! Exclusive content! Get games! etc.37:24 Feature Game: Babylonia (Reiner Knizia, Ludonova, 2019)
Sep 15
54 min
#134: Games for 6+ Players
In remembrance of things past, we bite hard into the madeleine that is large player count gaming. The recollection of not being sequestered into small basements, where... actually, scratch that, we were often in basements in the Before Times. At least I think so. Time is now an illusion.01:57 AYURIS: A Feast for Odin: The Norwegians (Gernot Köpke & Uwe Rosenberg, Feuerland Spiele, 2018)Games Played Last Week:03:44 -Time of Legends: Joan of Arc (Pascal Bernard, Mythic Games, 2019)11:32 -Spirit Island: Jagged Earth (R. Eric Reuss, Greater Than Games, 2020)12:32 -My City (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2020)13:19 -Thor (Reiner Knizia, Heidelberger Spieleverlag, 2002)16:42 -For What Remains (Paul Low, David Thompson, & Ricardo Manuel Luis Tomas, DVG, 2020)19:45 -Small Islands (Alexis Allard, MushrooM Games, 2018)22:04 -Iwari: Deluxe Edition (Michael Schacht, ThunderGryph Games, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):28:20 Moar Assault on Doomrock? Maybe!29:49 Satire no more: Dinosaur "Rawr 'n Write" from Pandasaurus30:29 Neuroshima Hex! limited edition big box34:03 "Borrowed" intellectual property: Fire Emblem and Anna's Roundtable37:53 Topic: Games for 6+ Players
Sep 8
1 hr 10 min
#133: Cosmic Frog
"Cosmic Frog: World Eaters from Dimension Zero--A Game of Strategic Gluttony." I mean, what could I or anyone else possibly say that could add to that? Games Played Last Week:01:46 -Spirit Island: Jagged Earth (R. Eric Reuss, Greater Than Games, 2020)03:34 -Shards of Infinity: Shadow of Salvation (Justin Gary & Ryan Sutherland, Stone Blade Entertainment, 2019)07:19 -Castle Itter (David Thompson, DVG, 2019)12:44 -Kingdom Builder (Donald X. Vaccarino, Queen Games, 2011)14:24 -Las Vegas Royale (Rudiger Dorn, alea, 2019) 16:40 -Barrage: The Leeghwater Project (Tommaso Battista & Simone Luciani, Cranio Creations, 2019)22:17 -My City (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2020)25:46 -For What Remains (Paul Low, David Thompson, & Ricardo Manuel Luis Tomas, DVG, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):32:17 Riot Games' Tellstones34:48 Meeple Towers (sadly not dexterity)35:59 More Civ-as-card-game: Imperium36:54 BGG covering digital gaming again, and Neuroshima: Convoy37:32 Eric Lang leaving CMON to become freelance again38:45 Feature Game: Cosmic Frog (Jim Felli, Devious Weasel, 2020)
Sep 1
58 min
#132: Why Is That Still on My Shelf?
I mean, maybe, possibly, hopefully, with luck, theoretically, given the right group, hypothetically, in time, conceivably, eventually, if I push hard enough, imaginably, as a favour, I could imagine, someday, perchance, play this again. Weather permitting.01:36 AYURIS: Cerebria: The Inside World (Richard Amann, Viktor Peter, István Pócsi, Frigyes Schőberl, Nick Shaw, & Dávid Turczi, Mindclash Games, 2018)Games Played Last Week:04:34 -Istanbul (Rudiger Dorn, Pegasus Spiele, 2014)06:06 -Blue Moon (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 2004)09:23 -Saint Petersburg (Bernd Brunnhofer, Hans im Glück, 2004)12:08 -Spirit Island: Jagged Earth (R. Eric Reuss, Greater Than Games, 2020)16:52 -Undaunted: North Africa (Trevor Benjamin & David Thompson, Osprey Games, 2020)23:17 -The Crew: The Quest for Planet 9 (Thomas Sing, KOSMOS, 2019)25:10 -Rome & Roll (Nick Shaw & Dávid Turczi, PSC Games, 2020)News (and why it doesn't matter):34:30 Lookout for more Uwe Rosenberg: Hallertau35:15 More Stories for Orleans35:39 Multiple He-Mans? Hes-Men? Archon and CMON37:35 David Thompson's Switch and Signal38:21 Dinosaur World39:00 Root digital42:30 Topic: Why Is That Still on My Shelf?
Aug 25
1 hr 4 min
#131: Eclipse 2nd Edition
Old conflicts are put to bed, taxonomies are shelved, and instead we take refuge in sweeping declarations. Walker focuses on the ad hominem, trying to dissuade people from game design because they are insufficiently hardcore; Mark focuses on games, declaring that you can't base games on random spat out tiles. Nuance is for the weak, and qualifications are for those lacking character. Mostly.Games Played Last Week:02:04 -Too Many Bones: Dart (Adam Carlson & Josh J. Carlson, Chip Theory Games, 2020)06:28 -Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar (Simone Luciani & Daniele Tascini, CGE, 2012)09:19 -Russian Railroads (Helmut Ohley & Leanhard "Lonny" Orgler, Hans im Gluck, 2013)13:23 -Through the Desert (Reiner Knizia, KOSMOS, 1998)16:36 -The Fox in the Forest Duet (Foxtrot Games, Renegade Game Studios, 2020)18:13 -Shards of Infinity: Shadow of Salvation (Justin Gary & Ryan Sutherland, Stone Blade Entertainment, 2019)20:44 -Terraforming Mars (Jacob Fryxelius, Stronghold, 2016)21:37 -Cthulhu: Death May Die (Rob Daviau & Eric Lang, CMON, 2019) News (and why it doesn't matter):25:09 The Princess Bride Adventure Book Game26:26 Capstone's Iron Rails: Iberian Gauge27:35 Feld's Castles of Tuscany28:32 Pfister's CloudAge29:17 Another Teotihuacan expansion30:00 Correction: Plaid Hat still owns Ashes30:22 Sniper Elite31:12 Walker complains about the Board Game Design Starter Kit32:39 Mark loves the USPS34:14 Feature Game: Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy (Touko Tahkokallio, Lautapelit.fl, 2020)
Aug 18
1 hr 5 min
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