I think Qin is a really charming game by Reiner Knizia. It’s simple, elegant and just looks impressive. The playing board is huge, the game components are of very good quality and it’s not very expensive. And even though there’s a lot going on on the board, with all the loose tiles and the colored pagodes standing around, it’s somehow not too busy and you can easily keep track of everything that’s happening.

It’s one of those games I often play with people who are not too experienced in playing board games. It takes about 20-30 minutes to play and you can explain it in 3 minutes. And come on, it just looks impressive, look at it:

So we often browse through #boardgames  and other board game related hashtags on Instagram, I think that’s actually the way how we discovered Qin in the first place! Besides the usual suspects, you sometimes stumble upon very interesting, a little less known, pretty looking games.

You can follow Semi Co-op on Instagram as well: https://instagram.com/semicoop/

What is the most photogenic game according to you?

Ticket To Ride is one of those games that regularly ends up on our table, it’s just an excellent game. Whenever we want to introduce somebody to the world of board gaming, Ticket To Ride is certainly one of the games we’d recommend. We own the original Ticket To Ride (America) with the big cities expansion and the maps of India and Swiss. We’re still thinking about getting the Netherlands expansion, simply because that’s where we live and our hometown is on the map!

For those who are fortunate enough to not have encountered a Ticket To Ride App Addict, this is the tune that will start working on your nerves: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBZochITFMs It sounds nice and relaxing in the beginning… but that will change after a few hours. 😉

What type of Ticket To Ride player are you and do you know other types?

K2 is one of those games that’s always fun to play. Although when it’s 30 degrees outside, it’s a little harder to fully immerse in the theme of the game. 😉

At first we thought it was more of a racing game to the top of the mountains. But it ISN’T! Yes, you score more points if you manage to get higher on the slippery slopes, but you’re also more likely to turn in a human icicle because of exhaustion. It’s quite a puzzle to figure out when it’s the right moment to advance and when it would be best to stay put and wait for the bad weather to pass.

If you’re interested in K2, you can check out the review by Shut Up & Sit Down: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AsXG72SWAzk

So last week was GenCon, one of the biggest board games event around the globe. For all the board game enthousiasts who were unable to go there, there was GenCant! GenCant is intended to basically be something a bit fun for everyone who can’t attend Gen Con. A lot of digital chatter about games and sharing funny and goofy pictures and there were a lot of prizes to win!

Semi Co-op released some GenCant related comics on Facebook and Twitter. Follow/ like our pages to check them out. 🙂

Watch It Played has launched their crowdfunding campaign for season 5!

We’re both big fans of Rodney Smith’s channel and we often choose to watch his videos instead of plowing through thick and sometimes complicated rule books to get an idea of the game play. If you’ve never heard of Watch It Played and you’re not a fan of staring at a rule book for an hour before you even have the slightest idea of how a game is played: you should definitely check out his YouTube channel – https://www.youtube.com/user/WatchItPlayed.

If you do know Watch It Played, you have to agree with me that Rodney Smith always looks friendly and calm. It’s amazing. That’s why I can’t imagine how hard it must be to play a game like Coup with him. I tried in this comic and I think it would be rather challenging. 😉

We’re surely going to support season 5 of Watch It Played and if you’d like to do that too, you can contribute to the project here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/watch-it-played-season-5#/story

What games did you learn to play by watching Rodney Smith?

It’s been eleven weeks since my last comic about Netrunner, so I thought it was about time to post this one. 😉 People that don’t know or play Netrunner really won’t get the joke, so I’ll try to explain it a little.

The comic is based on the card Scorched Earth.

Source: NetrunnerDB.com

In Netrunner, one player plays a runner (‘hacker’) and the other player plays a big corporation. Corporations have the ability to tag a  runner.  When a runner is tagged, a corporation can do some horrible things, like Scorched Earth. During my last tournament I won twice because of this card. Both times I ended up with two Scorched Earth cards in my hand and the possibility to tag the runner (and them lacking the money to remove the tags in time). As a runner you can’t really defend yourself against a total of 8 meat damage. That’s because the cards in a runner’s hand are equal to the amount of damage they can take. With the standard maximum hand size being 5: you can do the math.

For the Netrunner players: What are your favorite cards (or combination of cards)?

017_netrunner_tag

King of New York! The quality of the illustrations, game pieces and the custom dice are just top notch. It’s worth checking out if you’re looking for a fast-paced fun game is that easy to learn for people that don’t play board games too often! And it has a cool theme, you get to play giant monsters, does it get better than that? There’s a review of The Dice Tower you can check out to get an impression of the game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TmQXECJj4Q

So, everybody who has cats and likes to play board games must have experienced this a few times – or very often. Our cats can’t stand it if our attention is focused on a piece of cardboard, after all: what are we humans thinking, they are the center of the universe! Most of the time the ‘damage’ done by these adorable furry creatures is reversible, but not always…

A photo posted by Rachel Kremer (@rachelkremer) on

Do your pets have annoying ways to draw your attention when you’re playing a game?

So last week White Wizard Games (very successfully!) completed the Kickstarter campaign for their new game called ‘Epic’. Due to popularity, Star Realms was unavailable for about a year here after its release and we don’t want to wait that long again with Epic. That combined with us simply loving Star Realms, we just had to back Epic on Kickstarter and make sure we get the game immediately when it’s out. We gathered some people at our FLGS (Friendly Local Gaming Store) and ordered a few copies of the game so we could divide the shipping costs. This actually is the first (analog) game related Kickstarter that we backed.

One of the stretch goals of Epic was a Print and Play of the game! We haven’t played it yet. I’m not a big fan of print and plays (all the cutting and inky hands!) and prefer to just wait until the actual product as it is meant to be is in my hands. But I am very curious about the game play of Epic, so we might just want to try the game and outsource that cutting work or else we’ll have to wait until September…

Did you ever back a board or card game on Kickstarter? If yes, which one?

We’ve been playing Tigris & Euphrates a few times now and I think this is the first game we encountered in which your lowest score counts. It’s an interesting game mechanic for sure. It often happened that I had more than 20 points in military, but only 5 points in agriculture for example. It was interesting to compare the game to some other games we’ve played that are designed by Reiner Knizia. The game is a little bigger and more complex than some of the other Knizia games we’ve been playing like Qin and Age of War for example, The game actually feels like a meatier version of Qin, a favorite that often makes it to our table. Tigris has more depth to it though and seems to really shine with a group of veterans than just two beginners.

Tigris & Euphrates is the first in Fantasy Flight Games Euro Classic Line, which is interesting considering they also make big boxes full of miniatures kind of games. For us as new enthousiast to “the hobby” it’s nice that light is being shed on these dusty games, so we can enjoy them as well!

The next game in the Euro Classic Line is another Reiner Knizia game Samurai, with over 250+ games by Reiner, it seems they could be doing this for a while ;-).

What is your favorite game designed by Reiner Knizia?

Disclaimer: We played the Dutch version of Ghost Stories, so it might be that the translation of the rule book is just… not that good.

Ghost Stories! After going through the hassle of understanding the game completely and having the feeling we were really doing it right (thank you Google!), we had quite some fun with the game! It is probably one of the hardest co-op games we ever played though. It never took the game very long before we were completely overrun by all the ghosts and their demon posse and I think we even never got to fight Wu Feng! We played it at our FLGS (Friendly Local Game Store), so I believe we haven’t played more than three times – but it’s certainly one of those games I’d like to play again with more than two players to take revenge on the game. Or… to just fail miserably, again. 😉

So, which games do you think have ‘ghastly’ rule books?

Yes, this week’s comic has quite some geek layers going on (hello Game of Thrones!). But most importantly is of course BattleCON!  It took Heinze quite some effort to make me try this game about a year ago, I didn’t really believe in the concept of a fighting game as a board game and I thought it was quite too expensive to just ‘try it’. It’s not an easy game to get your hands on here in The Netherlands and due to obscurity not a game you will find in the demo section of game stores. But then Heinze showed up with the  print-and-play of BattleCON and I thought it was rather amazing. Even though it’s rather simple, it works really well and does have that fighting game vibe going on.

We’ve had the game for a few months now and we’ve only played with characters from the novice and beginner’s flight. That’s why the characters in this strip are not from the more advanced pools. We have the feeling we’ve only scratched the surface of what BattleCON has to offer, and that’s very cool and promising. I can’t wait to try all the different fighters, arenas, game and play modes!

If you’d like to get a taste of the game, check out the  BattleCON Print and Play: http://www.battleconnection.com/uploads/Devastation_Preview.pdf

Do you know any games which are excellent to settle an argument with? 😉
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