PAX East 2014 All A Board
Gaming isn’t all about them fancy pixels bouncing around the screen. There is an endless amount of fun to be had with actual real life people, in person, and it doesn’t even require taking your pants off. To wrap up my PAX East wrap up I’ll be taking a look out some of the outstanding table top games that were on display.
Urban Island games Funemployed is not just another knock off black and white card party game. The elimination of blind judging in favor of players creating a story using a hand of 4 cards lets you delve even deeper into the secret depravity of your so called friends. I won’t go too in depth here, instead check out our full review.
Farm Fun has squishy animals and dice, and that is apparently all you need to make a ridiculously fun game. A card is placed in the middle of the table which has a picture of one of the rubbery animal toys and two colored symbols matching a side of the two included dice. Once the dice are rolled, if one of the colored sides matches up with the color on the card, the first person to snatch up the appropriate toy gets to keep the card. If not, another card is added, then another, and another, until you have a table full of 30 somethings staring blankly at a bunch of colors waiting for the rusted gears you call reflexes to kick in. Do not play this game with children. They will kick your ass.
From the creators of The Resistance comes Coup, the game of bluffing, bribery and manipulation. Coup has somewhat of a poker feel. A game for 2 to 6 players, each is dealt 2 cards representing various government roles with a goal to either kill off or overthrow the other players. Each role lets you make some special play, stealing extra influence or assassinating a rival, the kicker here is you don’t actually need the card to make a move. Just lie. Now if another player calls you out on your bluff and you can’t produce the required card you lose one. On the other hand, if you get called out and can show the card, the other player loses one. Once you’re out of cards you’re out of the game.
Clockwork is something I’m really looking to get my hands on. Unfortunately I never had a chance to try the game out, however I did get some one on one time with creator Nick Defossez. A table top RPG system that cuts out the 10lb GM manual is right up my alley. Instead of memorizing a mountain of skills, spells, and stats, Clockwork uses pre-built card decks to represent your character. It allows the deeply modular nature of tabletop role playing to cross with the ease of entry found in card based games while still leaving room for strategic depth. I will be honest in saying I am totally biased towards solo developers busting their ass and wallet trying to get their product to the public. Even so, Clockwork looks like it has some serious potential and is worth a second look when the Kickstarter launches.
Is there a lack of robots in your game library? A.E.G.I.S. is the game for you. A strategic hex based battle for 2 to 4 players each fielding a team of 5 mecha. Each bot shares an energy pool that’s used for movement and attacking. Going all out with one leaves the rest of your crew dead in the water. The most rad mechanic is combining your bots to create more powerful versions until you essentially have Voltron raining down steely wrath on your foes.
This is just a small sampling of what was featured in the table top area. The point is if you haven’t delved into the world of table top gaming, what the fuck are you waiting for? Grab some beers and a few friends and find out what you’ve been missing.