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One of Pandemic's greatest mechanisms is the way the Infection Deck is managed. Each turn players reveal a number of city cards from this deck equal to the current infection level (2-4), this determines where new infections will appear. Players also draw 2 cards each turn from the Player Deck, which has a variable number of Epidemic Cards mixed in based on the difficulty level. The brilliance of the infection deck is how it interacts with Epidemic cards; when one is drawn from the player deck the Infection Deck's discard pile is shuffled, and then placed on top of the current Infection Deck, making it more likely that cities that have previously had outbreaks will have them again. This creates a very real sense of urgency as the first draw after an Epidemic Card can often result in outbreaks and a rapidly accelerating spread of diseases. It is this mechanic that allows Pandemic to successfully pull off a very in depth experience that creates a large sense of self involvement in a made up world. See More
Design and gameplay successfully pulls players in and makes them feel as though they are saving the world
Due to the nature of co-op games like Pandemic, a strong willed or loud player can end up dictating everyone else's turns for them, especially in situations where there are clearly better decisions to be made. This can lead some people to feel like they aren't actually 'playing' so much as being told what to do. See More
With multiple player roles to choose from and the unique way that areas are randomly infected, each playthrough is an entirely different experience. Pandemic also has multiple expansions adding more player roles and even a traitor mechanic which can turn the game from fully co-op to 1 vs many, adding an additional challenge for the good guys to overcome. All of this combines in a game that will continue to get played even years after being purchased. See More
When it was first released Pandemic's co-op gameplay was a pretty unique aspect to boardgames and made for a different and fun experience where players either won or lost as a team. As the board gaming hobby has grown over the years, fully co-operative games have become an entire genre and yet Pandemic remains one of the defining examples of the style. With a base game that is consistently difficult, even for veteran players, and an engaging and interesting theme to draw players in, this is a game where working together to achieve victory is almost an art form. See More
One of the first games to implement full co-op gameplay, Pandemic remains one of the defining examples of the genre
On each players turn they are allowed to attempt to trade their goods with other players. This leads to a high level of interaction between the players as they offer and counter-offer back and forth to get the best deals possible. See More
As players make decisions about when and where to expand their nation, as well as how to best spend their resources, the opportunity for both tactical and strategic planning emerges and gives Catan a significant amount of depth. See More
The game is easy to explain and introduce to new players, even ones that aren't familiar with modern board games, due to the simple nature of it. The game is played on a 6x6 grid on which cards can be placed, forming a path for your player piece. The game is quite straightforward - each turn consists of playing 1 card and then following the path on that card until it's stopped by a tile-less space. Your path can collide with an opponent's path, in which case both you and the opponent move their pawns accordingly, following your paths. If you collide with an opponent on the same road or if you walk off the board, then you are out of the game. The game is won by the last player on the board. See More
There are pretty much no aspects in the game that can be planned ahead apart from the fact that you can choose between three tiles. The rest is based on luck. There's no way to predict how your opponents will play and sometimes even you won't have much control over the outcome due to the cards that are drawn. See More
The artwork on the main game board is very well done and it follows an Asian theme. Needless to say, a lot of work has been put into the presentation aspect of this board game. Aesthetically this is probably one of the prettiest playing spaces out there. The game gives a very peaceful and zen-like feel due to the simplicity of the game mixing with the detailed art style. There's an epic Eastern-styled phoenix colored in the royal colors of red and gold accompanied by some clouds on the background of the board. The player figures have engraved dragons, adding flavor to the simplicity of them. There are also Chinese characters scattered throughout, roughly translating to "passage" or "going the same way". Moreover, as the board fills up with path tiles, the tangled web of paths looks visually striking. They look as if they've been carved into marble. See More
Tsuro is a great "appetizer" game that can be set up and played very quickly, making this a perfect option to kill some time. It plays in about 15 minutes or less and it'll easily hold the attention of everyone all the way through. The quickness of the game also pretty much guarantees replayability. See More
The core mechanics of the game are pretty simple to learn in under 15 minutes - more time can be spent playing the game rather than reading instructions. It also means it is great for newcomers to the game or those unfamiliar with boardgames in general, or even kids. See More
There is no direct conflict between players, which makes it a good game for beginners but also players who do not like the cut throat tactics of games like Monopoly. It also makes for a good game for couples to play as there will be no arguments or moves that may slight another player. See More
Some of the more complicated scenarios can be quite confusing, and the game is relatively slow paced, so it may not be fun for kids. It being a horror game, some of the themes (monsters, cannibalism, demonic rituals) are not appropriate for young children. See More
Often, when one player takes a card from the central layout it reveals multiple cards beneath it that open up new options for their opponent. This encourages players to pay attention on their opponents turn. Furthermore, players need to be aware of their opponents position on the military track since maxing that out immediately ends the game in a victory for the player to fill it up. See More
In a game where players can die of thirst, become buried under increasingly deep piles of sand, or be blown away when the storm reaches it's highest level, the only way to win is to race around the board trying to find all the pieces to your airship in order to escape with your lives. Having 3 ways to lose and only one way to win makes Forbiden Desert a very difficult game. However, that difficulty makes every success so much more rewarding. The feeling when you finally find all of the pieces to your airship and escape the desert for once and for all is amazing. See More
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