I'd like to find out if any other TAY regulars play board games. This past weekend I had some friends over and we rolled dice and moved counters all day; it was terrific fun, and I got to try out some really exciting games I'd never played before (with a few rounds of my old favorites). To get the ball rolling I thought I'd just go down the list of games we played with my impressions of each:

First up was King of Tokyo. The premise is familiar to anyone, and the rules are simple enough that non-board-gamers, or even kids, could pick up this game quickly. Each player chooses a monster from a collection of cartoony versions of famous Kaiju and rolls a combination of attacks, energy charge, or health. The goal is to gain victory points, which can be earned by moving into Tokyo and holding your territory, as well as through card effects and various other means. We played 3 games of this and it was a total hoot. Each game only lasts roughly 30~ minutes, so I think this would make a great party game as well. Not pictured here is the expansion pack, which I played with and was told improves the game a decent bit.

Next came Tales of the Arabian Nights. This is definitely one of those board games with a bit of a learning curve to get to enjoying it, but once you're actually playing it's absolutely fantastic. As the box says it's a storytelling board game. In simple terms, you pick a character and move around a map. When you land on a location an encounter card is drawn, which directs you to a paragraph in the massive Book of Tales. You select a response from a generic list of possible answers and roll for the result. The game's world is amazing, as are the stories it spins out. At one point my friend's character encountered a typhoon on the open ocean, and chose to attempt to drink it. My girlfriend's character was turned into a donkey on the first turn of the game and remained that way for the rest of it (though she still became the Vizier). The game is just full of great stories and interesting mechanics. Really highly recommended!

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And finally, my contribution to the game night was a round of Android: Netrunner. This may be familiar to people like myself who were into CCGs and board games back in the '90s (this is the 2012 re-release by Fantasy Flight games). It was created by Richard Garfield, creator of Magic: The Gathering, and designed as a specifically two-player Living Card Game (or LGC). What "LGC" means is that instead of purchasing decks and booster packs in the hope of good cards, Netrunner gives you all the cards in a single set designed to be played out-of-the-box (though there have been expansions added since). The gameplay is asynchronous, meaning each player plays differently. One plays as a "runner" or hacker, and the other as a corporation. The corporation's goal is to advance its own agendas; the runner's goal is to steal those agendas by hacking through their security. The decks can be quickly reassembled for different hackers or corporations, and each has certain advantages. Another highly recommended game; especially if you've got a friend you can rope into deckbuilding.

So koTAYku: played any good board games recently? What are your faves? Let's chat about it.