Ah, the microgames. I still have the 2nd printing of Ogre by Steve Jackson Games. I also have a bunch of other ones he did as well. Fun times though I do wish the Ogre computer game would be redone for modern machines.
Never got into the board variety of rpgs, but damned impressive article and game.
I remember reading about this game when it first came out in '11 (I think…) - it was on my radar because Matt Brinkman was and is awesome. At the time, it was $70-80 and too rich for my blood.
This news of a reprint gave me the false hope that maybe the game was more affordable, and…now it’s $90.
I know it’s a rarity, and a true work of art. I don’t begrudge them the price. But I’m still a little sad I won’t be able to lay my hands on it.
If you want to see the game played (along with a rules exploration and review):
Yeah, the price is reasonable, and I’m intrigued, but not $90 intrigued. Especially since I probably couldn’t find anyone to play it with me - or perhaps once, at best. It’s too pricy for just indulging my curiosity.
This looks like a pretty fun game. Might be a good game to keep on hand to nudge friends into playing full on RPGs.
That was the hovertanks one, aye? I loved that game.
That was the GEV add on. It was a fun game and I think it would work as a multi-player online game. Just have to see if Steve Jackson would want that.
Are we claiming that Euro-style board games are squeezing out wargames and RPG-ish fantasy games? That seems insupportable. In the first case, the heyday of hex-and-chit wargames faded long before Settlers of Catan blew up. In the second, Eurogames are competing directly with “traditional/family” board games like Monopoly, and that’s always been a different (though slightly overlapping) market than fantasy tactical games; the latter has never been disrupted as far as I can tell, and if anything the recent blurring of the lines has only helped them. Eurogames are carried in specialist hobby stores that would never stock Monopoly, so casual boardgamers come into those stores and get exposed to stuff like Descent.
And, y’know, Settlers of Catan is actually an awesome game. I’d be unhappy if Eurogames were wiping out other styles, but it looks to me like the market as a whole is growing and offering more choices than ever. This sounds more like STOP LIKING WHAT I DON’T LIKE than a reasonable critique.
(Cave Evil does look fun, BTW. But…$90 for black-and-white cardboard? Descent 2E is roughly the same size, full-color, and a has a buttload of plastic minis, and it’s only $80. I realize there’s economies of scale involved, but it’s kind of a hard sell. Still, I’d play it if someone brought it.)
Technically hovertanks was the “G.E.V.” sequel though they were in Ogre as one of the units.
I have the original Metagaming version. The article also mentions The Fantasy Trip which was originally published as two microgames Melee and Wizard. They were also designed by Steve Jackson and can kind of be seen as a beta test version of GURPS.
I really liked those games and yes very proto GURPS in feel. But very basic roleplaying/combat framework that left a lot of make it up as you go for some things that worked well for a dungeon crawl experience.
Yeah $90 is steep but then that is very nice looking and I can forgive it for small press kind of thing but still out of my casual budget right now. I really wanted the fancy OGRE that was kickstarted but same. The newer printing technology has really made a lot of what 25 years ago would make go neat, but my minis look cooler on the table, to now ooooh want.
Aye, that’s right! GEV! Ah, memories
I don’t think anyone is calling for a the death of eurogames, but they are very much dominate in the board game world right now. If you like games with an actual theme baked into the mechanics, the pickings are thin compared to if you don’t mind the theme stapled on as an afterthought. I can understand the desire for some folks to rebel against the current trend and, as a lover of games with an actual theme myself, I applaud theme.
All that said, the entire pie has gotten bigger, so it isn’t that much of a problem for folks that like theme. Now really is a golden age for board games like none other in history. If you like board games, now is a great time to be alive.
Settlers of Catan has no theme?
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