28th Mar2018

‘Abalone’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Abalone is a classic abstract game that pitches two teams of marbles against each other in a mind-bending puzzle that feels reminiscent of Othello and Draughts, but with its own unique mechanic based on momentum. It is played on a minimalistic but appealing raised board that houses two chunky sets of marbles and it is […]

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27th Mar2018

‘Divinity Derby’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

In Divinity Derby, up to six rival Gods amuse themselves by betting on the outcome of three consecutive races that take place between mythical creatures who race around an abstract, circular track. With beasts like a gryphon, a phoenix and a lamissu in play and the players representing Gods from numerous mythologies, Divinity Derby is a […]

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23rd Mar2018

‘Victory or Death: The Peloponnesian Wars’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

As the second game in the Quartermaster General series, Victory or Death: The Peloponnesian Wars uses Ian Brody’s card-driven supply line system to replicate a tighter, smaller conflict than the original. As a result, Victory or Death brings with it a lower player count (four instead of six) and a few subtle tweaks to the way […]

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21st Mar2018

‘Star Wars Legion’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Whilst I must admit that I was a little bit surprised when I first saw the announcement for Star Wars Legion, that surprise soon turned into excitement when I realised that a battalion level miniatures game was in the offing. Although it shares a few concepts with other Fantasy Flight Games set in the Star […]

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19th Mar2018

‘Welcome to Centerville’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

An interesting mix of Yahtzee-style dice rolling and abstracted area control, Welcome to Centerville uses the idea of populating a city with cubes as a way of scoring points in a race to be the overall winner after three scoring rounds. It is played on a relatively small board with an attractive but intricate layout […]

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14th Mar2018

‘Giant Killer Robots: Heavy Hitters’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Giant Killer Robots: Heavy Hitters may have one of the most cumbersome titles that I’ve ever encountered (which is fitting given the nature of the titular mechanical behemoths in game) but in spite of the name, it features a number of rather elegant systems. GKR is the first board game from the well-respected New Zealand […]

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12th Mar2018

‘Donning the Purple’ Board Game Review (Pre-release)

by Matthew Smail

Donning the Purple is an ambitious worker placement game set in 193 AD that focuses on the relatively complex political and militaristic landscape at the time. This period of time was one of the most tumultuous in Roman history, with the year 193 actually referred to by historians as “The Year of the Five Emperors” […]

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12th Mar2018

Game On! Review: The Three Little Pigs! (Iello)

by Jason Brigger

A little about our family… My wife and I love playing board games, card games and any tabletop game that we can get our hands on in our home. Recently we have been teaching and including my almost 8- year-old son and my 4-year-old daughter in our latest game nights with much success. With so […]

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05th Mar2018

‘Command & Colors: Napoleonics’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Although I am fortunate enough to have hundreds of childhood memories that I think of with incredible fondness, some have certainly stayed with me more than others. When it came to television in the early 1990’s, access to Sky was very limited and no one had hard drive based Freeview boxes for catch up TV […]

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23rd Feb2018

’878 Vikings’ Board Game Review (Academy Games)

by Matthew Smail

Whilst I am a huge fan of board games in almost all of their forms, I’ve always been fascinated by the strategic push and pull of a good war game. Many games feature direct conflict, but few are as overtly direct about it as those that pitch two (or more) opposing sides against each other […]

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22nd Feb2018

Game On! Review: Go Nuts for Donuts! (Gamewright)

by Jason Brigger

A little about our family… My wife and I love playing board games, card games and any tabletop game that we can get our hands on in our home. Recently we have been teaching and including my almost 8- year-old son and my 4-year-old daughter in our latest game nights with much success. With so […]

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19th Feb2018

‘Kepler 3042′ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Kepler 3042 represents the fourth game in a run of space exploration and/or colonisation games that I’ve enjoyed in the past month or so. I’m happy to use the word enjoyed in this context because whilst space (in general) might be an overused theme, it offers almost limitless possibilities for imaginative interpretation at a local, […]

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07th Feb2018

Game On! – ‘Monopoly Gamer: Mario Edition’ Review

by Jason Brigger

Hello all! My name is Jason Brigger and you may recognize me from my articles on Nerdly where I review the latest films and the on-going weekly review of the television series Black Lightning. My wife and I love playing board games, card games and any tabletop game that we can get our hands on […]

05th Feb2018

‘Vengeance’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

In Vengeance, the latest game from Mighty Boards and the mind of Gordon Calleja, up to four players recreate the same kind of blood-soaked revenge sequences that we’re more used to seeing in movies like Kill Bill and Death Wish. With card and dice drafting plus a unique take on miniatures combat, Vengeance presents a […]

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31st Jan2018

‘Sol: Last Days of a Star’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

As far as board games are concerned, I am a real sucker for a strong theme, particularly when the mechanical elements of the game – however strange – feel well integrated with the overarching game world. A great theme can be spoiled by poorly aligned rules, whilst a standalone set of mechanics is rarely going […]

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17th Jan2018

‘Terraforming Mars’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Although Terraforming Mars has already been lauded as the best game of 2017 by many and in fact as the best board game ever by a not insignificant number of people, it took me a long time to really see the appeal. There’s no doubt that the concept of transforming the surface of Mars into a habitable […]

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11th Jan2018

‘Pandemic: Rising Tide’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Whilst the ingenuity of board game designers never ceases to amaze me, particularly when it comes to designing and integrating new mechanics with existing themes, the Pandemic series has been equally impressive in doing the opposite for the past few years. From the many variants and expansions of the base Pandemic game (including two seasons […]

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03rd Jan2018

‘First Martians’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

I feel remarkably lucky to have received First Martians at Christmas time, when more or less the whole country downs tools and gorges themselves on turkey and chocolate for several days before looking for something else to do. That something, for me, is almost always board games, but at this time of year I’m also […]

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22nd Dec2017

‘Civilization: A New Dawn’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Sid Meier’s famous Civilization series is among the most revered video games of all time, having featured six core versions, a raft of expansions and several spin offs and sister series. The original Civilization is now over twenty years old, but perhaps the most impressive thing about it is the fact that the basic, turn […]

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11th Dec2017

‘Legendary: Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Although I can’t for the life of me think why it’s happening now (it is twenty years since the original series, so maybe that’s why) Buffy The Vampire Slayer has just been converted into the latest Legendary deck-building game. For those who are unfamiliar with them, the Legendary series is a collection of complete, out-of-the-box […]

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01st Dec2017

‘Dark Souls: The Board Game’ Review

by Matthew Smail

“You Are Dead” states a welcoming sheet of jet black paper overwritten with blood red, gothic print. It’s the first thing you’ll see as you ease the deep, deep lid off of the retail release of Steamforged Games incredibly popular release of Dark Souls: The Board Game. It’s a mantra that will be all too familiar […]

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29th Nov2017

‘Seafall’ Board Game Review

by Matthew Smail

Since it was released last year, Seafall has experienced something of a stormy reception from core gamers and popular critics. If you take an aggregate view of every review out there, you’d find faults ranging far and wide encompassing everything from pieces that won’t stand up straight to a dull theme, too much luck of the dice […]

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