— A big thank you to 999Games for sending us a copy of Wingspan!


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The title of this comic might be a little farfetched. 😉 (Don’t get it? Click here)

So we’ve played Wingspan and think it’s a great engine building game and an amazing production showing how beautiful games can be. It did get us thinking about how its demand and reception surpassed every expectation, even from industry people. While this leads to some fun thoughts about shady powers behind the scenes pushing the popularity for certain games, it also got us thinking about paid (p)reviews and content for board games.

The number of people playing board games is growing and so are the number of games, the amount of publishers and people creating content about board gaming. Because of this, it is hard as a publisher to get your games noticed and some content creators offer paid previews to facilitate this demand for attention. While there is nothing wrong with paying people to create media around your product we do think that it is absolutely critical that it is clear when somebody is getting paid to make certain content. There are some examples of people being very non-transparent about which content of their content is paid for by publishers which, we think, in the long run, could damage board gaming as a whole.

As content creators that offer paid content ourselves, we have many discussions among ourselves how we should communicate paid content and luckily in the Netherlands, there is a social code put together by the RCC (Dutch organ for advertisement) and content creators how you should handle with these types of situations. We hope we are transparent when we have received games, when a comic is sponsored and what our deal with CoolStuffInc for additional comics entails. If you have any questions that are not covered by our FAQ, please let us know in the comments or message us when you feel privacy is needed.

To be clear, we do not accuse Stonemaier games of doing shady things, we hold Jamey Stegmaier in the highest regard and his blog is a treasure trove of information that is helping board gaming forward. We’re also not going to point fingers at creators saying they’re doing things wrong, we specifically drew ourselves in this comic taking bribe money to prevent accidentally making it look like somebody else. We do want to make sure people know that not every positive post, video or picture about a game is as spontaneous as you think it is and we hope that if you are a creator and are creating paid content you do everything possible to be upfront about it.

Speaking of paid content, time for some promotion!

In a little over two weeks, we’ll be at the UK Games Expo and we’re getting hyped about it. This year we want to experiment with selling signed prints of comics at cons! We’ve been giving away signed prints as prizes and people seem to be really enjoying them and others have asked if they could buy one, which is a great idea. For £10 you can have a print of your favorite comic signed by Rachel and handed by us personally to you at the expo. Because we can’t carry around our whole archive you do have to order your print before the 26th of May using this form. Once we’ve received the order we’ll contact you to decide on a time and place etc. If you don’t want a custom print, we still hope to meet you at the UKGE and talk about games. 🙂


What board game conspiracy do you think is true?



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We love Root and the fact those silly birds keep overthrowing their government, so we started wondering what would be the silliest thing they’d dethrone a leader for. Thanks to all the expansion news and art Leder Games is putting out, we’ve been playing a lot of Root again and our next game is already planned!

Also, like everyone on the planet, we love Kyle’s art and he’s been doing some live broadcasts on Instagram, we’ve been enjoying and learning from them, so next time Rachel will be able to copy his style even more thoroughly :-P.

In this past week, things have slowed down a bit leaving some time to play some games. We tried Dominant Species which is probably the heaviest and “closest-to-an-actual-war-game” game we’ve played, we did enjoy it but it took almost five hours which make us wonder when we’ll have time to play again. We also played Dragon Castle and it’s a wonderful game which makes it so unfortunate that it already seems to be forgotten under the ongoing tidal wave of new releases.

Speaking of the tidal wave of new releases, AEG has come out in a blogpost to said they will publish fewer games to make sure all of their games are great. We think this is a good decision and we hope this will be a wider trend in the industry, just making a list of game we want to see at UKGE on Tabletop Together made us feel overwhelmed and happy we are going to have fun and meet friends and not deciding on games we should review or make videos about.

Which tiny character flaw would make you decide to dethrone your leader?

Week two of the Semi Co-op summer special! We’re still having an adventure somewhere in Europe so we don’t have a lot to talk about. Maybe we can lighten the burden of waiting for you by learning about some smaller board game content creators that you can binge while you wait for us to return!

First up is Take Your Chits. A Youtube channel that has just started eight weeks ago, but who has already reached more than a thousand subscribers (congrats!). Christian does a light rant/discussion/thought sharing about an aspect of the hobby. It’s funny in a nice cringey way and makes you think about some aspect of your favourite hobby you didn’t think about before. Also the video’s are short which can be nice in a genre that is filled with >15 min videos.

Second is the Rules Girl. Think Watch It Played but much faster using the power of animation and skipping everything but the most important rules. This is perfect for when you will play a game for the first time at a friend but you don’t need to know every edge case of the the rule book.

On Instagram we think @theendsofboardgames is a fun concept, showing only the end states of the games Kevin plays. These pictures seem a little too organised to be actual games states though, our table looks like the game exploded by the time we’re done with them (are we weird?).

Lastly, of course, we want to point you our favourite creators Actualol, Tiny Wooden Pieces and Up to Four Players who we’ve mentioned in the past but have always been amazing in showing support and sharing comics that they liked!

Who is your favorite “unknown” board game content creator?

For some of you it might be time for the summer holiday! We will be leaving shortly which leaves us with a bit of a conundrum what we can create on such short notice. But we’ll surely be bringing some games to pass the time between the beautiful views and being stuck in a tent because of rainy days.

But being on vacation also means time away from the game collection which is a shame! We’ve started with our Near and Far campaign and are having a blast so far! Ryan and his crew have really delivered an immersive world full of super cool things and interesting choices. The game does come with lots of different components which is why we decided to create a laser cut insert with a very swanky character tray.

Speaking of people doing cool things for board games, this week there are three worthy causes for your money. First up is the campaign for the second African board gaming convention. Board game designer Kenechukwu Ogbuagu is raising money online so attendance can be free for visitors, promoting board gaming in Nigeria. We think this is a very cool way of organizing and funding a convention, so we wish him the best of luck and the visitors the greatest of times!

On the internet side of our hobby, Shut up and Sit Down and Rodney from Watch It Played are both doing campaigns to continue their work getting people excited about playing games! We’ve featured both in our comics and we’re long time fans, so we hope they keep doing the cool things that they do.

Spreading the joys of board games can also be done by lending games to friends and people (you trust not to bend cards). We currently have three games left by friends and will lend people games they want to try or play some more in their own time. While three games doesn’t quite make a board game kennel we do love taking care of other peoples games :).

How often do you borrow or lend games?

The start of today’s comic is actually true! Rachel had a surprise bachelorette party and her friends and I knew that she would’ve enjoyed the party less if there was a comic to worry about. So secretly I’ve made a comic using my art forgery skills. We’re getting married this Friday but Rachel has told me there will be an update next week (she’s really serious about giving you a comic each week!).

The game in the comic is an actual game and although we’ve never played it, the comic doesn’t seem to stray too far from reality. Twilight Imperium 3rd edition is a game that comes in a huge box, has a ridiculous play-time and comes with endless amounts of plastic ships, cards and tokens. In the game you control a interstellar race trying to build a galactic empire through trading, politics and combat. It’s one of those lovely decadent impractical games that lures me like a moth to an all consuming flame. I hope to get to play it one day because it’s such generator of great stories. Ars Technica wrote about it just this weekend and Shut Up and Sitdown (congrats to Quintin and Leigh for getting married as well!) have done a very fun playthrough video about it.

And even though it seems like such a blast, I have no intention of ever owning it. One of our friends sold it off because he never got to play it, and I think our copy would suffer that same fate. Rachel is reluctant about getting into games that take longer than 6 hours (the nerve!) and I’ve come to realise war-like game are something that can force you into a tiny corner of the map without giving you a lot of options to get back into the game, which will ruin the fun that player will have. But if anybody would invite me to a game I won’t say no (wink wink).

What game would you love to try, but would never buy? And because of which reasons?
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