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ONE LAST TURN! …. please?! It’s an aspect of games with a racing element that can be frustrating when you think everything was perfectly aligned for that one last turn you had planned… but it never came. There are also enough other games that try to make sure that everybody has the same number of turns before scoring and I think I prefer that with a long game that requires a lot of planning and thinking.

Last week we visited the press event of Dutch publisher 999 Games. They’ve recently moved into their new ‘office’, but oh boy I’d call it an HQ (it’s so big!), and invited people to visit to check it out and show what games they’ll be publishing this year. It was a mighty impressive building with a big warehouse and a beautiful gaming space (and cantine) on the top floor. We’re glad business is going well for them!

Games we played were Intarsia, Nunatak: Temple of Ice, and the new game in the Pick-a-Pen series called Hackers. And we might also have played a prototype but we cannot share anything about that.
We had already seen a sneak peak of Intarsia last year at Spiel and it was great seeing how well the production turned out. The wooden pieces really had a flush fitting and it looked beautiful! The gameplay is quite simple and we’d like to say its complexity level is comparable to Azul. We believe Intarsia is going to be a BIG hit at Spiel this year.

We also played Nunatak and although we had a fun time it’s not a game we would add to our collection. There was a lot of luck involved with four players and I could see that might get frustrating. It feels like a great family game but our first impression was that it was not for us and there are other games we would rather play.

Pick a Pen has been a very successful new game series for 999 Games but we had never played one. They are roll-and-write games in which the colored pencils are also the dice and seeing the chunky pencils I understand its popularity. But alas, we quickly discovered that the game is not colorblind-friendly so we will have to skip that one.

On Sunday we played the party game Ransom Notes! It’s very easy and silly fun! The game comes with over 800 word magnets and players will have to form short sentences describing whatever that round’s instruction card says. It could be things like “Ask a child in the airplane seat behind you to stop kicking”. Since you have a limited pool of words to choose from, you’ll have to get creative and you cannot create a good sentence. Personally, I’m not the biggest fan of Cards Against Humanity and even though this game checks some of the same boxes, it feels more creative and less steering into a certain direction.

Would you (like to) play out the turn you had planned?

I’m probably guilty of this, where I want to share the cool thing I was going to be able to do with the rest of the table. No need to actually play it out. But it can be fun to see what kind of strategies the other players were going for and how that turned out.

Dominion is a clear case where this issue is massive. I profoundly hate this game for that, and there is really no good reasons for that. The designer of the game had gathered data through online games, and came up with a 60/40 % winning ratio between the first and the second player in duels.

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