Reviews tagged posts

Game Review: Forbidden Island

Never judge a book by its cover and never judge a game by its intended audience.  Also you never know where your next gaming purchase will come from. That’s quite a lot of lessons and we haven’t even cracked open the case yet.

While perusing an “everything must go” Borders hoping to find a few stray Batman graphic novels and D&D books now incredibly marked down, I happened upon the ruins of what was once the games section. Picked mostly clean, a single tin packaged game caught my eye, Forbidden Island.

Dare to discover Forbidden Island! Join a team of fearless adventurers on a do-or-die mission to capture four sacred treasures from the ruins of this perilous paradise. Your team will have to work together and make some pulse-pounding maneuvers, as the island will sink beneath every step! Race to collect the treasures and make a triumphant escape before you are swallowed into the watery abyss!

Suggested ages: 10 and up
Number of players: 2 -4
Playing time: 30 minutes
Contents: 58 playing cards, 24 island tiles, 6 player pawns, 4 treasure figures, 1 water meter (with marker), 1 rule booklet
Retail price: $16.99 and is available on Amazon for under $15.

Right from the start, the production value and composition of the game are astounding. The full color tin is gorgeous and that quality is reflected through all of the pieces, especially the tile cards which have wonderful artwork and are made of a durable thick cardboard. Types of cards are all easily distinguishable from one another, making organization and storage easy, and the player and treasure tokens again are durable in the case of the treasure look pretty cool. This game might skew toward a younger audience, but it was built with care.

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LEGO Heroica Review: Draida Bay #3857

When I picked up LEGO Heroica, I just grabbed all of the sets because they were on sale. But the order I opened and built them is the order I’m reviewing them in. If you haven’t already visited Heroica Waldurk Forest, I suggest you do so because most of the rules and mechanics are covered there.

The Goblin army has seized control of Draida Bay, cutting off supplies to the region. You must take a stand against the Goblins, but can you defeat the powerful Goblin General and take his Crystal of Deflection?

Suggested ages: 7 and up
Number of players: 2
Playing time: 5-10 minutes
Contents: 101 LEGO bricks, eight Microfigures, 1 buildable LEGO die, building instructions, rules booklet (in English, French and Spanish) and a mission map
Retail price: $14.99 available at Amazon.com or LEGO Shop

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Mixologist’s Review: Celestial Seasonings Perfect Iced Tea Southern Sweet Black Tea Brew Over Ice K-Cup

I’ve always been a huge fan of iced tea. With my mom being from Maryland, sun brewed tea was always made daily on the porch and it’s one of those drinks I’ll always associate with summer. But I grew up with unsweetened tea and tend to avoid sweet tea because I don’t like the idea of my skull rotting out of my skull. But after wandering the streets of Boston during the Fourth of July weekend, Green Mountain Coffee provided me with some free samples of their “Brew Over Ice” brand.

Now, I’m guessing that “Brew Over Ice” is the same as the regular coffee, but the concept behind it is genius. K-Cups and Keurig machines are something I still find odd even though I have one at home and at the office. I find them excessively wasteful but given that an iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts (when I’m not inflicting bodily harm on myself) is a couple bucks, K-Cups almost seem like a bargain.

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Adventure Review: Scarred for Life

WANTED: For all manner of low-down mischief. Inquire within.

I’m not usually one to run published adventures. Or rather, I am, but I usually can’t help but tweak and edit the damn thing until it’s unrecognizable. Add new encounters here, clean up the stat blocks there, change some lizardfolk into orcs, swap the setting for my home game, and bump the level up a few notches. So, when I find an adventure that looks like it would be fun to run practically as-is, I get excited.

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Game Review: LEGO Heroica Waldurk Forest

LEGO has crossed a line. After a childhood of building with bricks and playing games, I’ve been amused by the LEGO Games line. Creationary was a great take on Pictionary while the Spinjitzu was a bit odd. But then LEGO revealed their next offering: a module, tabletop RPG. I don’t think they could have been a more perfect kryptonite for me.

Stop the dark druid from rising to power! Hidden in the ruins of Waldurk Forest, the Dark Druid is restoring his strength. You must use all your skill and power to find your way past his lurking monsters, but can you escape with the Chalice of Life?

Suggested ages: 8 and up
Number of players: 2 or 3
Playing time: 10 to 15 minutes
Contents: 225 LEGO bricks, 7 LEGO Microfigures, 1 buildable LEGO die, building instructions, rules booklet (in English, French and Spanish) and a mission map
Retail price: $19.99 available at Amazon.com or LEGO Shop

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Munchkin Review: Munchkin 7 – Cheat with Both Hands

Around the three or four expansion mark, Munchkin starts getting hard to play consistently. Restrictions abound on what can and can’t be equipped based on your class, gender and race. It gets even worse when you start messing around with games like Munchkin Zombie Bites Fu. So to remedy this, SJGames released Munchkin 7: Cheat with Both Hands.

Admit it. You really like to combine all your Munchkin sets . . . the stupider things get, the better. Playing Star MunchkinCthulhu Booty Zombies is really weird and really fun . . . but it can also slow things down.

There are a lot of ways we COULD have addressed this problem. But this is Munchkin, so the solution we chose was to create a lot of really overpowered new cards. Why be a Super Munchkin when you can be an Ultra Munchkin? If a Half-Breed isn’t enough, you can be a 1/3-Breed. And if a single Cheat! card doesn’t do it for you, you can Cheat With Both Hands!

Contents: 112 cards (42 treasure, 70 door) and rules insert
Usable with: ANY Munchkin game, but designed for multiple expansions together
Retail Price: $19.99, available at Amazon or Warehouse 23

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Magic 2012 Commander & Multiplayer Review: Artifacts & Lands

With the set reviewing coming to a close, it’s time for some of the best and weirdest cards in the set. Artifacts (usually) mean anyone can use them so getting a handful of them is always exciting. But if there is one thing Wizards now does really well, it’s flavorful and useful artifacts in the Core sets.

Magic 2012 Reviews
WhiteBlueBlackRedGreen | Artifact & Land

Adaptive Automaton

The lord of all lords! Adaptive Automaton is a genius way to finally give all of those terrible tribes a lord to rule over them! Sure, someone of you are going to use him on elves, zombies or goblins but that’s just boring. This guy shines when it comes doing weird things – like making giant homarids or a stampede of antelopes!

I expect this robot to stick around for years to come and I’m perfectly okay with it because he’s delightfully fun.

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Magic 2012 Commander & Multiplayer Review: Green

In multiplayer, there probably isn’t a color that’s as fun as green. Giant creatures trampling around without any of the mess of white and blue telling you what you can and can’t do, Green is a blast to throw down at the kitchen table and Magic 2012 provides plenty of new toys.

Magic 2012 Reviews
White | Blue | Black | Red | Green | Artifact & Land

Arachnus Spinner

I’m still not sure what to think of this card. Being a 5/7 with reach means it will keep you safe from plenty of dragons and angels, but it won’t be killing as many of them as I would like. As for searching for Arachnus Web, that’s awesome when you can run 4 of them but in Commander, this giant spider isn’t worth it.

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Magic 2012 Commander & Multiplayer Review: Red

Half way down with the Commander and Multiplayer review of the latest Magic set – Magic 2012! And like most core sets, there are some great gems hidden here once you rummage through all the rubble in Red.

Magic 2012 Reviews
White | Blue | Black | Red | Green | Artifact & Land

Blood Ogre

In a color that burns all it can as quickly as possible, bloodthirst feels right at home in red. Blood Ogre is simple and as far as I’m concerned reads “3/3 first strike for three.” Plus thanks to those odd lords from Morningtide like Bramblewood Paragon, this warrior can get big. Even tossing in some proliferation like Volt Charge makes me think this guy, while simple, can easily find a home.

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Magic 2012 Commander & Multiplayer Review: Black

The colors keep coming and so do the reviews, luckily Black seems to actually be fun for the casual player when it comes to reprinting classics and providing new spells to get black mages ready for battle.

Magic 2012 Reviews
White | Blue | Black | Red | Green | Artifact & Land

Bloodlord of Vaasgoth

Vampires are getting a lot of love as the new Black tribe (sorry Zombies!), and the Bloodlord is exactly what Commander vampires are looking for. I mean, there are now four Vampire lords! What most people seem to be missing is that on his own, this is a 6/6 flier for only five mana! But the ability to essentially give all your new vampires +3/+3 can quickly turn the tide in your favor.

Also keep in mind that multiple instances of Bloodthirst are cumulative so Bloodrage Vampire gets Blooodthirst 1 and Bloodthirst 3 for effectively Bloodthirst 4!

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