Ever since my first game night with the Cebu Board Gaming Society, I’ve been hooked on tabletop games. I now spend much of my free time playing and consuming content on board games. Who would have thought I’d even spend more on board games than books and video games combined?
I’m happy to be part of a board gaming community, whose members enjoy buying, collecting, and playing new games. I often get to play new board games during our weekly Monday and Friday game nights at Bubble Bee Tea House. It’s now easier for me to decide which board games to buy, after trying them out once or twice.
Here are my first impressions of the board games I’ve tried so far, and where you can buy them locally.
Ticket To Ride
Designed by Alan R. Moon, Ticket to Ride is a board game for two to five players. The goal of the game is to collect resources and claim railway routes throughout North America. Longer routes will give players more points, as will completing Destination Cards.
Very simple game rules and a child-friendly theme make this a great family game. Unfortunately, Ticket to Ride’s popularity has some people calling it the next Monopoly, or the Monopoly of this generation. Haters gonna hate, and all that, but I like this game a lot.
It’s easy to learn and fun to play. It’s a perfect game for introducing newbies to the world of hobby board games. It’s one of my go-to games when people who have no idea what the big deal is with board games today dare me to teach them how to play something.
Yes, I bought a copy of the game for myself.
Released in 2012, Seasons is a board game designed by Régis Bonnessée. It is a two to four player card and dice game, where player who scores the most crystals wins. This is one of the most vibrant and beautiful games I have ever played. It had beautiful artwork and top quality components. The game is moderately complicated, recommended for players 14-years-old and above.
Players gain crystals by playing cards and harvesting energy, in the form of earth, fire, wind, and water. The game is divided into four seasons, and the types of energy that can be collected and harvested changes from season to season. Wonderfully crafted dice and card mechanics add plenty of luck and strategy to the game.
I only have one problem with this game: they used red for the air element and yellow for the fire element. When I think of air, red isn’t the first color that comes to mind. When I think of fire, red is definitely the color that comes to mind. Like me, the friends I’ve played Seasons are always baffled these color combinations as well.
Nevertheless, Seasons is one of the most fun games I’ve played so far. It’s definitely on my list of board games to buy.
Survive: Escape from Atlantis
It’s every player for himself in Survive: Escape from Atlantis, a board game designed by Julian Courtland-Smith. Here, two to four (or up to six, with the expansion) players attempt to get their meeples to safety on one of four nearby islands before Atlantis sinks and its volcano erupts.
Unfortunately, this game is filled with perils: whirlpools that drown everything around it, whales that capsize boats, sharks that eat meeples, and sea serpents that destroy boats AND eat meeples. With each turn, portions of Atlantis sink to the bottom of the ocean, and the perils of the sea increase.
Who can get the most meeples to safety? Each meeple is worth a certain number of points, and the player with the highest point total when the game ends (and who remembers to keep his most valuable meeples alive) wins.
This is one of those games where players can be super evil or super nice. It’s very confrontational and has the potential to destroy friendships. Unfortunately, I always play to win—although I usually lose, which makes me more excited when I’m winning—so some of the others ended up quite annoyed at me by the end of the game.
Sink that boat!!!