Board gaming 2021: minis are back, baby!

Wait, it’s co-operative at all? Basic Clank isn’t.

What I’ve read is that it isn’t truly competitive, and that sometimes the story brings you to shared objectives

I think this might be a bit table specific. We played the game fully competitive. There are narrative beats that progress at different rates if you do or don’t accomplish goals, but those goals give huge rewards that are well worth going for in a fully competitive context. That said, the Legacy stakes and stories affect everyone at the table, so I’m still very interested in what goals my opponent is accomplishing. I don’t think it felt particularly “off in your own world”. But I imagine that varies from group to group.

We all had great fun with BSG back in 2010, but I can’t imagine going back to the card based skill checks after playing the vastly superior dice bluffing mechanic of Dark Moon. Which was based on the BSG Express homebrew. Curious if they will incorporate any of that into it. I’m not seeing any details on gameplay improvements which BSG desperately needed.

The biggest of which was not working very well outside an exact player count of 5.

It does seem like Unfathomable may carry some legacy bits of bad designs. I agree that the skill check system was clunky and it’s a shame they don’t seem to have something better in place. I also have come to appreciate the non-binary individual player objectives in games like Homeland, Dead of Winter, and Nemesis. Those make it much more interesting than just trying to figure out who is the bad guy. I really prefer more nuanced objectives.

See I hated the “pseudo traitor” mechanics of stuff like Cylon leaders and Dead of Winter. Just seemed like a lazy copout solution to humans gaming the system.

Dark Moon is my top social deduction game because it avoids both gaming the system and pseudo traitor mechanics. The dice system turns it into a game of Liar’s Dice, where you have to weigh probability against what you’ve observed about other players.

Ouch.

Well I don’t remember liking the Cylon Leaders at all. Mostly I think for the Fantasy Flight bloat they added for not much benefit. The individual goals are what I really like about Dead of Winter. It makes the community of players feel much more lifelike balancing those needs rather than just making sure we stop all the baddies. Homeland is great because even the people who are true blue, 100% believers in the cause are still competing with each other to see who the best agent is. Never mind the person who may be an actual opportunist.

I’ve seen Dark Moon and even played it years back. While the dice mechanic I like I don’t know how drastic the changes between people arguing bad rolls versus card draws really are when it comes to the social aspect… It has been a long while so my memory is not totally clear on it. I did remember liking Dark Moon though. Mostly because it was a good distillation of Battlestar without a lot of the fiddly bits, but I like the more nuanced goals in the games that have come since.

I have many, many many, things I could say about BSG and the expansions. Some parts work better than others.

That said it is genuinely one of my favorite board games of all time, even if after 38 or so incarnations of forum games of it the game is more or less run through.

Still, I really like what a lot of the expansions add, if more in theory than in practice for Cylon Leaders. That said there are some significant benefits and balance changes that really shine in some of the later elements. Things like the CAG role, and the Cylon Fleet Board do add a lot, and help to give more role versatility than the base game. Sorry pilots, after the first jump you became redundant!

Really Pegasus and Cylon Fleet Board are 100% essential to me, the rest is a for flavor extension.

God that looks horrible. I won’t say BSG has the most amazing artwork as it’s mostly screen caps but those white crisis cards couldn’t be more boring. I’m sure it will get reviewed with high praise, but I’ll stick with BSG.

I understand why people love dark moon and it’s quick gameplay. I really wanted to like Dark Moon as it was originally BSG Express, but the game never worked for me. It was always way to easy to just out yourself as the bad guys and win and the die mechanic made things worse in my opinion (i’m sure I’m on the minority on that one).

More importantly what makes BSG work, and presumably Unfathomable, is the slow burn. It’s not supposed to be a fast game it’s supposed to be co-op with a growing paranoia. One of my favorite BSG games was a 4 player game where everyone at the table thought the person to their left was a cylon when in fact there wasn’t one for the first half of the game. Still if unfathomable gives people a chance to get their hands on bsg I’m happy to see it happening.

BSG got too easy for the humans once you learned how to game the system and count cards.

Pegasus made it even easier.

The big balancing attempts after that was doubling down on the pseudo traitor mechanic. In my experience, it just made traitor-guessing a bigger waste of time than it already was. Just focus on grabbing Cain for the 1st turn blind jump, then spam the Pegasus engine room. Anyone who deviated from that could safely be branded a Cylon. Eventually I started voting to ban Cain and just play without the Pegasus board (it really makes it way too easy: both the engine room and damage-soaking) but was usually outvoted. Pegasus locations were supposed to be high risk/reward, but the rewards always outweighed the risks.

The Cylon fleet board was a good addition. Unfortunately it came with a bunch of blah in Exodus.

Did anyone like the New Caprica endgame?

Did anyone like the Exodus endgame?

I’d have to see a bunch of improvements before I try out Unfathomable ($80?? yeesh). The artwork certainly isn’t helping. Stark minimalism can work, but that just looks like placeholder stuff from a prototype version.

We did. She is broken good.

Naturally our group would gravitate towards heavyweights like Anders and Cottle:P

Even with Pegasus Cylons won more than they lost. A few tweaks to card setting and stuff did help that, plus the CFB really boosts Cylon play.

Pick and choose my friend, pick. And. Choose.

No

Trauma and allies were neat. But not super consequential either. That said it does force sometimes sub optimal choices. But largely it didn’t actually eliminate anyone, just made certain things more dangerous. I actually liked how that tweaked balance. Gives more room for plausible deniability.

I thought the Pegasus expansion was terrible. Extended a long game even further for very little game. I also thought the Cylon leader mechanic wasn’t much cop at all. Loved the base game though. Introduced it to the guys and girls at work and they couldn’t get enough of it…

I like the cylon fleet, I like the updated crisis and skill cards and thought Daybreak was a pretty cool expansion. The Cylon Leader Motives that come with Daybreak work much better than the Agendas from Pegasus. The Motives make the Cylon Leaders actually playable.

same here, gives me some time to decide if I want the miniatures or the standard token version. 5 hrs to go …

The monster minis are damn tempting to me, and probably worth the extra $50 IMO. I’d probably go Gameplay All-In ($230) if I was more of a board game player, but I can always pick up the expansions if I really like the game and won’t miss out on too much in terms of the SGs.

Yes to all.

Really, the change to the deck by adding the CFB is one of the biggest improvements into the core gameplay systems. It turns an otherwise required by rules, but largely a useless drag on team, role into an actual relevant and important one. Otherwise space is largely irrelevant, and ignorable in 99% of situations past the first jump. It makes it so, most of the time, all players are engaged instead of the game being ‘XO President to quorum fish, or XO admiral to do shooty shooty things’

Plus the treachery cards give Cylon players something to do to remain relevant. Too often the revealed cylon would simply draw Engineering and Piloting and have nothing else to do but pick a crisis card on their turn. The expansions make playing a revealed cylon so much more engaging.

I picked up War of the Ring a few weeks ago. Finally got to play it last night. I loved it, in the same way that I love Rebellion. It just nailed the theme perfectly.

However, holy cow I don’t think I have ever fucked up the rules on a game so much on the first play through. Especially combat.

I am also annoyed that all the damn figures are the same color with subtle differences between them. “Oh, Gondor is the horse with the small tail, and Rohan is the horse with the fancy helmet.”
Also, the poetical track counters are hard to tell who is who. Bigger tokens would have helped.

You just need to buy the collectors edition it’s all painted for you. It only costs 1400-4500.

Yeah differences are annoying, but if you keep playing it will get easier to spot.

I have a ton of little sticker dots. I am going to mark the bases with them, as well as the diplomatic counters.

I bought a bunch of different colour sharpies and coloured the edge of the bases