Crimbo Photodump

Hope you all had a great holiday season, full of food and merriment! I know I did; between all the present-buying and wishlisting, I also had to cram in my birthday celebrations, and Laura and I had to figure out how we were going to fit fourteen family members into our front room for Christmas dinner (we totally managed it).

The Last Supper ain't got shit on us.
The Last Supper ain’t got shit on us.

On top of that, Laura was busy making an epic Craft (bakery) check to get my birthday cake ready. For previous reference, these are Laura’s previous creations…

cookie

magic cake

This year, rather than one big cake, she went for the slightly more difficult route of about 170 smaller cakes. Why? So that she could do this…

mario

 Yeah, I think I might keep her around for a while longer. God knows what she’s going to do for when I hit the big Three-Oh next year…

So, presents! I think it’s safe to say that my friends and family might have the slightest inkling as to what I like, as I was inundated with all manner of card games and board games!

sopio

First is Sopio, a super-fun and super-casual card game. Aim of the game is simple, be the first to 1000 points by playing positive points cards on yourself, and negative points cards on your opponents. You can only get Sopio HERE, and it’s worth a look. The only thing I wish they did was a big pack of blanks so I could draw up some ASDF Movie cards like “Mine Turtle” and “I Like Trains”… 

fluxx

Fluxx has been a favourite of mine for a long time, so I was happy to get this in my stocking this year! Another super-fun, super-casual card game, the main premise is to obtain Keeper cards to meet the current goal, while you and every other player constantly change the rules, often resulting in frantic hilarity. There are lots of expansions. Obviously I am doomed to collect them.

gloom

The third card game I received, Gloom is like Happy Families, directed by Tim Burton. The aim of the game is to put your chosen family through all manner of suffering before killing them, while keeping your opponents’ families happy and alive. The player with the highest negative score at the end wins! The cards are cool transparent plastic, which is certainly an attention-grabber. Great game, lends itself well to amusing storytelling (“On his way home after being disgraced at the dance, Darius Dark was wounded by wasps before falling down the well!”)

tokyo

I’ve rambled before about dice-rolling kaiju monster beat-’em-up King of Tokyo before, and I’ve been meaning to get the expansion pack. Thankfully Laura did that for me! I haven’t yet had a chance to play a game with the Evolution cards, but they look great fun; Kraken, my favourite monster, gets some truly disgusting upgrades, but then so does everyone (apart from Alienoid, but who cares about that guy?).

dreadball

Clearly, our day at ChiCon 2013 made an impression on Ian, because he went and got me Dreadball! And not just any normal Dreadball, but the Deluxe edition too, with extra goodies! I can’t wait to paint up everything and have some games of American Football IN SPAAAACE. Looks like I’ll have to take a trip to my local model shop soon and buy some more glue and paints…

chas

Okay, this one’s a bit of a cheat, as this was a present to me, from me. I love CitOW, and I can’t wait to play a game; thankfully I’ve managed to arrange a gaming day with some fellow geeks from work! I grabbed the Horned Rat expansion as well, if only for the alternate cards for each god; seriously, Khorne’s Chaos cards and upgrades from the base game are effing bah-roken.

monopoly

Even Laura wasn’t safe from the deluge of games this year! A friend of ours got her this. Laura’s a bit of a freak for Monopoly, whereas I can’t really stand it. This version however is pretty good; you’re just going round the board collecting brands, and filling your tower; first to fill your tower with brands wins! It’s much faster than normal Monopoly (we managed two games in about an hour), and in general there’s a lot less faffing about. I hate traditional Monopoly, but thankfully this isn’t traditional Monopoly.

heroquest

And finally, this bad boy. Not really a present per se, but I asked my parents to get this down from the attic and bring it to me when they came to visit. Hero Quest is probably one of my absolute favourite board games, and remains the best dungeon-crawler I’ve played. I have a sneaky project planned for this old school classic, but you’ll have to wait until 2014 to see what that is…

Overall, a great Christmas; I’ll certainly be busy with all these games next year! Until next time, have a good remainder of 2013, and have an amazing New Year! I’ll see you in 2014!

Gareth 

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