thor's day! games day!
i'm very excited to blog this. i have played a new game. and it is excellent. you should get it. it is, almost inevitably, a rio grande game. a quick google reveals them to be an american company. and they specialise in importing german games. NB, the germans are far, far better at making board games than us. this, though is designed by the wonderfully monikered donald x. vaccarino, who is american. imagine! it won the big prize at the german game awards (that is a big thing) like the excellent carcassone before it.
the name of the game is dominion and it is a deck-building game. i've never seen this sort of game engine before, and it reminded me in a way of my all-time favourite game - magic: the gathering (previous blog here). yes, i am aware of how massive a dweeb i am. now, what this actually means is that you have a deck of cards each and there are all the rest of the cards in organised piles on the table. the card types are: money, victory and kingdom cards. you buy new victory and kingdom cards with the money cards (once a turn). you use kingdom cards to do stuff (once a turn). and you use victory cards to win (count up at the end). what is fun is that you keep adding to your deck and when it is done you shuffle and deal a new hand from the deck; it is recycled again and again as you add to it and you've got to keep the balance right between the types of cards in your deck.
why is this good, then? well... the key lies in a concept called card advantage, which is a concept in magic: the gathering theory. (seriously, you have no idea how massive a loser i am). basically, the idea is that if you get to use more cards than the opposition then you will win (ceteris parabus). how does this work in dominion? good question, team. what i've neglected to say so far is what "stuff" the kingdom cards let you do. with them you can throw a card out of your deck in exchange for a different one, or force an opponent to throw a card away, or steal one from them or (and here's the good bit) draw more cards. there is nothing as powerful as drawing more cards in these kind of games. in addition, some cards let you play an extra kingdom card on your turn. if you get to draw and play another card, you are laughing. if you manage to build up a string of manoeuvres (this program says that's a mis-spelt word; it can go fuck itself) where you draw card after card and do action after action you are giggling uncontrollably while the other players wait for their turn. well, i am.
this is probably really badly explained. go buy the game.