I found this 404 Not Found coloring book signed by The Oatmeal (or is it just Oatmeal) in the bargain bin at Barnes & Noble. It was only $3.75!
I am a big fan of The Oatmeal’s webcomics and I was actually very pleasantly surprised that his game Exploding Kittens was actually a lot of fun. So this is a big find for me and it shows how you just never know what you can find in the bargain bins!
Fantastic Gymnastics is probably the weirdest board game with a mass market release. It is released by Hasbro Gaming and you can probably find it in most big box stores with a toy section. The thing though with this game is it probably a huge flop for Hasbro if all the negative reviews you can find on the Internet is any indication. So why was it so negatively received and why do I think this game is so awesomely, awesome?
Well the first thing you have to know about this game is that it is insanely difficult. You have to press a button to rock the gymnast back and forth until it picks up enough speed and then when it goes round and round the bar you have to release him with another button just right so he can stick the landing. The game is not intuitive. Unfortunately it is marketed as a kids game and most kids (and probably most adults too) will probably lose interest fast especially since you won’t see much progress until you spend A LOT of time with it. But this game is wildly addictive and it SOOOO rewarding when you finally do stick the landing.
Similarly, is this game a dexterity/ party board game or is it an unusual puzzle to be solved? I really think this is not a board game you can bring to your next board game meet up since if you don’t practice the motions you definitely won’t score. So you will probably end up scoring 100 points while everyone else will be waiting for game to be over. But when you finally “solved” and “mastered” Fantastic Gymnastics, it has the same a ha moment that you get when you solve a good puzzle.
So I wonder if Fantastic Gymnastics was marketed as a solo puzzle and not a kids/ party game, will it help with the image of this game? Fortunately it has often been compared to Looping Louie, a kids game that eventually had a cult following. I wonder if Fantastic Gymnastics can do the same years down the road. Anyways it is listed as a board game and I love, love Fantastic Gymnastics.
By the way if you are wondering if I am any good at Fantastic Gymnastics well I am proud to say I can stick the landing generously 1 in 5 times but I am working on it!
The Royal Rumble is right around the corner and I haven’t opened a pack of WWE cards in awhile so I used some of my reward points to picked up this rack pack of 2017 Topps WWE Then Now Forever.
First off I don’t think I am sold on the name Then Now Forever as a name of a set. Second off these cards are kind of boring. There are no interesting gimmicks, no interesting inserts. But definitely the pull of the pack is the Shinsuke Nakamura “rookie” card.
Anyways is it just me in thinking that there are way too many wrestling card sets? The rosters don’t change as much as in say baseball or basketball so each set is churning out the same wrestlers over and over again. How many R- Truth or Curt Hawkins cards do we really need?
Star Wars Destiny is a game I really enjoy playing but I am having a hard time finding people to play it with. Also I think if I played it competitively or in a tournament it wouldn’t be as fun. AND it cost a ton to play. Despite all that, the new set Star Wars Destiny Legacies has a lot of interesting characters, characters I want to collect. So I bought a couple of packs to see what I can pull before I buy any singles.
The most interesting pull is the only character I pulled, Wedge Antilles. Wedge seems like a fun card to build around especially since I have a lot of spare vehicle dice lying around. Also force throw and pirate speeder tank are legendary cards & dice but I don’t really have a deck in mind for either of them yet.
Overall not a bad couple of packs but unfortunately because the way the game is designed you can never have enough cards and dice you so have to keep buying more and more packs. Ugh.
So a deep freeze has been settling in New York City which means I am sort of cooped up indoors with a lot of free time to kill. So with that in mind I was shopping around New York City before it got too cold for some interesting board games to try. One of the board games I picked up was Strat-O-Matic Baseball.
My copy is of the 2011 season. Strat-O-Matic is a board game I have heard a lot about. It is renowned for its accurate simulations of a baseball game and if you do enough games, a baseball season. I admit I haven’t tried it yet and it is quite intimidating going through all the pieces. There are a ton of charts to influence the result (for example, there is even a chart for the ballpark effect). Each player has his own card and with all the cards and pieces just keeping everything organized is a game on its own. Also the instruction manual reminds me of a old college math textbook…
The very short answer on how to play Strat-O-Matic is that you roll three dice. One dice determines which chart to use (pitcher’s or hitter’s) and the other two dices determines the result using that chart.
Strat-O-Matic reminds of MLB Showdown, role playing games and maybe war games (but I haven’t played any real war games). But I love statistics so this game should be a lot of fun. I am going down the rabbit hole that is Strat-O-Matic.
I took my seemingly annual trip to Walt Disney World last week and wow it was a blast! I have been planning this trip for months and I got to check off everything on my to do list. Here are some interesting souvenirs from Walt Disney World.
First off and probably the coolest thing I brought back is this sketch of Hector from Coco. I kind of pregame for Disney and watched Coco the night before. Hands down, Coco is one the best movies ever. The music, the characters, the bright, vibrant world… just amazing. I also have to admit I cried a bit.
I also got this art print of Donald Duck for my room. It was a pain to carry back but I love that I went through all the trouble now.
Sorcerers of the Magic Kingdom is one of my favorite things to do in the Magic Kingdom. I got a ton more cards including four copies of the promo card they hand out during the Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party. I should be getting close to completing the whole set.
Finally I got into the fidget spinner craze late but that is a good thing since I can get them now for ridiculously cheap (like less than a dollar). I got these two light up fidget spinners from Disney for pretty cheap too ($5 each). One is of the Haunted Mansion which is my favorite ride and one is of random Mickey merchandise.
If you are a child of the 90’s, you probably remember those epic Crossfire commercials. I never own this game when I was a child but I have one now and wow, playing it was such a nostalgic trip.
So how was the game? Crossfire is probably best as a conversation piece. The game has fast frenetic action which is good but if the two players are about equal skill the game pretty much ends in a stalemate. Your finger also really hurts after playing with for awhile.
The components of the game is on the lackluster side. The gun jams from time to time but I like to think getting it to work is part of the skill of this game. The actual board is just a thin piece of cardboard and I am always scared one of the cheap plastic piece will break. It also goes without saying it super easy to lose the metal balls but you really can’t fault them on that.
But with all that being said, you can’t underestimate the nostalgia this brings. It just feels super 90’s (even though the original game first came out in 1971). Everyone I know from the 90’s vividly remembers those commercials. The best part of Crossfire is probably the awe people get when I first bring it out.
By the way if you are looking for variants to fix some of the problems above. The way I play now is 3 three minute rounds. You can get 5 points for get the puck across the board, 2 points for getting to the end zone and 1 point for getting to your opponents side of the board when time runs out. The player with the most points after three rounds wins.