Martian Dice: It’s No Zombie Dice, But Still Fun

martian dice cow, chicken, human, tank, death ray

When I first heard about Martian Dice, I felt like I needed to get a copy, because Zombie Dice has been a hit with pretty much everyone I know. Martian Dice has some similarities, especially in appearance, but it’s a very different game with its own pros and cons.

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Treasure Hunting in Tobago Board Game

Game board early in Tobago game

Tobago may just be the most attractive looking board game I own. It feels like a deduction game, since players are narrowing down the possibilities to find the location of treasures, but the locations of the treasures are actually determined by clues played by the players.

I like Tobago a lot, but it isn’t one of my very favorite games because it feels a little repetitive (narrow down clues to treasure, race to treasure, dig up treasure, repeat). However, when I played most recently with Sean and Josie, they both said Tobago is one of their very favorite games that I own. So it is pretty appealing!

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Lost Cities Two-Player Card Game

Game box for two-player game Lost Cities

Lost Cities is a fairly popular two-player card game. I know many people love this game, but it isn’t one of my favorites. It’s okay, but it doesn’t stand out as being special in comparison to some of my other favorite games. I find it a little dull for what it is.

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Airplane Games

Hive, Blokus Duo, and Ticket to Ride iPad app on airplane tray table

I’ve had to travel for work lately, and I had the good fortune to sit with my friend and co-worker Charlie on a couple of fairly empty flights recently. We both like games, so we spent the time trying out games on the airplane tray tables. We played Hive, Blokus Duo, and the Ticket to Ride iPad app.

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Zombie Dice Snow Day at Carmelita

Sean standing outside Carmelita restaurant

On a recent snow day when Sean and I both worked from home, I got an email from Carmelita, one of our favorite restaurants, saying they were having all day happy hour for the snow day. When we both finished working, I put Zombie Dice in my pocket, and we took a long walk through the snow for some dice, cocktails, and yummy vegetarian food.

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Fruit Farming Fun in Finca Game

Midway through Finca game

Finca is a board game about fruit farming. That might not sound so interesting, but it is actually a fun strategic game that is focused enough that it doesn’t require terribly deep thinking, which is refreshing.

Turns are quick, the components are attractive and good quality, and there is something very satisfying about harvesting little pieces of wooden fruit. The windmill mechanic for moving farmers and getting fruit is also an interesting puzzle-like system.

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Playing Racko at Naked City Brewery

Game box for Racko next to Naked City pretzel

Racko is a simple and classic numbers game from the 1950s that is very heavy on luck. It’s light and enjoyable. I got it for Sean for Christmas after he enjoyed playing it at a game night recently. We took Racko along with us to dinner at Naked City Brewery after work on a Tuesday night. Naked City is a very cool local brewery with good beer, good food, and a board game-friendly environment.

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A Fun Sea Monster Bloodbath in Survive: Escape from Atlantis

Meeples on a boat in Survive: Escape from Atlantis

Survive: Escape from Atlantis is a game that is both silly and brutal–a fun combination! Players attempt to rescue their meeples from a sinking island, avoid sea monsters, and turn those sea monsters on the other players.

I’ve played some seemingly friendly games like Ticket to Ride and Carcassonne where players got upset with each other based on perceived mean behavior, but I have never seen any sort of hard feelings in games of Survive. I think that’s because the conflict is so direct and expected. You can’t really blame someone for killing off your meeples when you’re trying to do the very same thing to the rest of the players!

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An Evening of Carcassonne

Rich, Elizabeth, and Pat at the Carcassonne table

Carcassonne is a special game to me because it is the game that really got me interested in board games. My friends Jill and Morgan received Carcassonne for a wedding gift, and they taught us to play it in fall of 2009. It was eye opening! I had never enjoyed a board game so much.

Sean and I got a copy soon afterward, and we have played many times since then. I started researching other games like it online, found the BoardGameGeek website, and got hooked!

Although I now have many other great games that I enjoy, I still love Carcassonne. Last night, Sean and I had dinner with our friends Pat and Rich, and we taught them to play Carcassonne. Carcassonne feels like a mellow game, but it can be pretty cutthroat in a quiet way. I find something very satisfying in the puzzle-like game board that you create as you go. Continue reading