Boardgaming Retreat 2018


It was really good to come back to the annual boardgaming retreat after a year off. 48 hours at an off-season golf & country club near Trosa with fellow gamers.

I played thirteen sessions of twelve different games. To give you an idea of how popular each game is, I’ve included its current BGG rank in the list below. For instance, Container’s 586 means that right now there are 585 boardgames that the largely US-based users of rate more highly. But they have rated tens of thousands of games!

  • 7 Wonders Duel (2015). Ranked 13. Neat two-player version of the excellent civilisation-building card game.
  • Azul: Stained Glass of Sintra (2018). Ranked 2104. Abstract tile game: a somewhat more intricate take on the basic ideas of last year’s hit Azul. Either is fun, either is enough.
  • Century Spice Road (2017). Ranked 210. This cards & cubes game’s illustrations are nice, but there’s hardly any player interaction. Don’t know why it’s so popular.
  • Chosön (2014). Ranked 3465. Card game with fun illustrations and some unusual mechanics. I’d like to play this again.
  • Container (2007). Ranked 586. Container shipping & trade. We played a recent edition with massive plastic ships that would serve well as close-combat weapons. I didn’t understand the strategy at all, but I’d like to learn.
  • Gaia Project (2017). Ranked 7. Civilisation expansion & development. Scifi re-skin of the 2012 fantasy hit Terra Mystica. Not great, not bad, huge replayability.
  • Heaven and Ale (2017). Ranked 348. Euro game ostensibly about monks making beer, where the theme has little to do with the mechanics and player interaction is scanty.
  • Koba Yakawa (2013). Ranked 2295. Minimalist card game with almost as few components as Love Letter and far simpler rules. Fun for what it is!
  • Secrets (2017). Ranked 2094. Hidden roles game about CIA and KGB agents. I soon became completely confused.
  • T.I.M.E. Stories (2015). Ranked 58. Beautifully illustrated co-op story game, like a shared choose-your-own adventure. The box contains the basic rules and hardware plus one fine scenario. It has roughly the same re-playability as a short novel has re-readability, though. Many additional scenarios are available, each costing 54% of the basic box’s price. Compare this to normal boardgames where you buy the basic box and happily play 25 times without having to buy anything more.
  • Tichu (1991). Ranked 127. Interesting variation on the popular Chinese card game Zheng Fen, which combines trick-taking and hand-shedding. You can easily play Tichu with a normal Western card deck provided you can find four jokers or other extra cards with the same backs plus a felt-tip pen.
  • Twilight Struggle (2005). Ranked 5. Long two-player cards-chits-board game about the Cold War. Fun for modern history buffs.

I’ve blogged before about the retreats in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015 and 2016.


Author: Martin R

Dr. Martin Rundkvist is a Swedish archaeologist, journal editor, skeptic, atheist, lefty liberal, bookworm, boardgamer, geocacher and father of two.

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