Kanagawa

Kanagawa

In Kanagawa, all players are disciples of Master Painter Hokusai, trying to learn in his studio of art how to produce visual effects on canvas, capturing the mood of the different seasons as well as specific objects like trees, buildings, characters and animals. And while his wisdom is available to everyone, not every disciple can take away the same learning from the Master.

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Papà Paolo

Papà Paolo

Naples, the birthplace of pizza, is being invaded. Local businesses selling pizza are under attack by a foreign product: French Fries. Papà Paolo, the master pizzaiolo, is obviously offended by foreign food trying to take over his city. Up to four up-and-coming pizza bakers compete to become the great baker’s successor in Papà Paolo. They don’t actually beat back invading fried potatoes, but they will build their own, little pizza empire. And in the end, that’s what really counts, right?

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Trickerion: Legends of Illusion

Trickerion: Legends of Illusion

There are many boardgames about wizards throwing fireballs at things, but very few about the other kind of magic, the kind where skilled performers go on stage and make their audience think that magic might be real. One of those few games is Trickerion, an intensely strategic worker placement game with many details to keep track of and very limited …. well, everything. Between limited resources, limited time and limited space, every decision is tough. Just the way we like it.

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The Prodigals Club

The Prodigals Club

Being rich, influential and groomed for political office, that must be such an incredibly boring life. Why is it that the lower classes get all the fun? Well, you’re not going to let them have it without you, and if you have to get rid of your wealth and your good reputation to join them, then so be it. That’s why you and some equally rich and dimwitted friends started the Prodigals Club, a contest of who can most effectively ruin their future.

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Council of Four

Council of Four

Some countries just don’t manage to form a stable government, but the unnamed kingdom of Council of Four is ridiculous even by those standards. Influential merchants, the players, exchange councilmen in any way that best serves their interest. If the current council can’t be bullied into writing a business permit, they just replace them. And whoever does that best wins the game.

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Viticulture

Viticulture

Move to Italy, by a vineyard, grow wine, that’s not a plan that appeals to me. But put the same thing in a boardgame and suddenly I’m interested. Viticulture is a classic worker placement game about running a vineyard, from growing to selling wine, while giving tours and entertaining visitors on the side.

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Alchemists

Alchemists

Combining boardgames with mobile apps into a game that people actually want to play is the current Philosophers’ Stone and Holy Grail rolled into one for game designers and publishers. The Philosophers’ Grail, maybe. Previous attempts have had lukewarm success at best. But Alchemists is the first in a new wave of games with companion app, and it might just have found the magic formula how do it right.

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Fields of Arle

Fields of Arle

Fields of Arle is Uwe Rosenberg’s love letter to the home of his ancestors, East Frisia and especially the village of Arle. It’s a worker placement game that is unusual in not allowing more than two players, but is equally unusual in the number of options you have and factors to consider. It’s a big game, a long game, and a game that brings many aspects of medieval Frisia to life.

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Russian Railroads

Russian Railroads is a European optimization game, subtype worker placement. Every game, you try to do better than the one before, optimize your strategy and score a bit higher. But it’s not a typical game of the genre. Where you often have a lack of options in other such games, only one or two routes to victory which you try to use as well as you can, Russian Railroads gives you many different, viable ways to score. Its many moving parts create a fascinating whole that will let you find new ways to a higher score for a long time.

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