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Tabletop Games, Simplified. Building, Painting, reviews, and tools of the hobby. We cover tabletop miniatures games from Warhammer, Warhammer 40k, Bolt Action, to Warmachine and much more. Pull up a seat, pick up the brush and sit back for some tools and rules with us fools! We have fun at the table!
 
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The boats were making their way out to sea, heading for the three main fishing grounds off the coast of the Isle of Norsica. You were hoping that your fleet would bring back the best catch. It would require brain and brawn to beat the rival clans and land the biggest fish. If your clan could grab the most lucrative haul, you would be crowned Skora …
 
Teaching a game isn't easy and the same is true for learning. The teacher will do their best to explain everything and get everything right, but the first play of a game should always be chalked down to experience. Players should do what they can to help and expect mistakes to creep in. However, there are also things the game itself can do to make …
 
The squad had been practising many hours a week for months to get to this point. They were up against a tough team, but they had the belief, conviction and the appetite to win. The determination was written on every single swimmer's face. As the routine started, it was clear that these women were headed for glory. The tension grew as the music play…
 
Hobbies are known to be a way to reduce stress and can improve feelings of anxiety and depression. Board games are, of course, no different. In this article, I want to look at how playing board games can help your mental health. Read the full article here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/05/03/board-game-relief-topic-discussion/ Intro Music: Bom…
 
The woodcutter and I were travelling the lands when we reached a kingdom far to the south. Its people were most distraught, because the fairies of the woods had kidnapped the most famous musician whose music made everything better. Of course, we agreed to help the people without hesitation. We ventured into the forest and peeked under every leaf an…
 
It's so very easy to dismiss the old adage that we learn through play. Many of us take our shared hobby very seriously. We're highly competitive and want to win. We need to play by the rules. It's an unwritten law - but it's a law nevertheless. It's "the law". Yet, when we see how young children interact with games, it's often very different to wha…
 
Get your friends together, grab some bits from the local junkyard and assemble everything into the best stronghold you can, to be crowned champion of the Junk Forts by Matthew Dunstan and Brett J. Gilbert from Inside the Box Board Games. Read the full review here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/04/23/junk-forts-saturday-review/ Useful Links Jun…
 
The following article was written by Laurie Trueblood of Adventures of Authenticity. As a kid, family game night was a staple and we had that one closet that always seemed to overflow with board games. As I got older, I added tabletop RPGs like Dungeons & Dragons and video games. And while gaming has always been a part of my lifestyle, I never real…
 
It is the 11th century AD and the Vikings regularly invade our lands, while my domestic rivals try to forcefully take territory from me, without much luck. My military prowess is well known and I prove myself again and again, while also forging political alliances by strategically arranging marriages between my family members and other important ho…
 
When you have a long-standing, regular games group, you will probably have already established certain "house rules" that define what's considered good behaviour at the table. Chances are many of them are actually unwritten rules that have just come out over time and are based on the types of people you play with. In this article, I want to try and…
 
After graduating from Oxford, specializing in criminal law, it was time for me to travel and see the world. Little did I know that every journey I took would present me with a mystery I had to solve using my formidable spirit of deduction and unfailing determination. Tiny clues would lead me along a trail of discovering more and more proof which wo…
 
Staunch competitive players may feel that co-operative games are a bit pointless. After all, it makes more sense if there is only one winner, rather than several, or so their reasoning might go. However, even if you love co-operative games and even if you prefer them to competitive games, there are some games where you don't feel like you're achiev…
 
There is something hiding in the city. I'm sure of it. I keep finding clues and my detectors are picking up very strange signals - but I need proof! Hard facts that I can present to the science community to make them believe that I have found a Cryptid: Urban Legends by Hal Duncan and Ruth Veevers from Osprey Games. Read the full review here: https…
 
Rob Ingle works for Stop, Drop and Roll Games Studio and has been an artist for a long time. As he says himself, he is straightforward, honest and punctual. He is skilled in illustration, design and all manner of creative work. Read the audio transcript here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/03/30/rob-ingle-let-me-illustrate/ If you want to suppo…
 
We all know how some games can take a while to set up. Sometimes it's because there are just a lot of components and different pieces to take out of the box and place on the table. Other times, it's because you have to sort components a certain way, after they were all mixed together in a previous play of the game. The opposite can also be true, wh…
 
My last board game convention was Airecon 2020 and it was the last event of its kind in the UK - and as it turned out, there wasn't going to be another in-person UK board game convention until 2021. It was a wonderful event, even though everything felt weird. Nobody was sure whether to shake hands or not. The special guests who had flown in from th…
 
Co-operative games come in all shapes in sizes, just like any game. So there should be something there for anyone, irrespective of what you're looking for, as long as you want an experience where everyone works together to win the game as a team. In this article, I look at a handful of different types of co-operative games, giving examples of games…
 
Shuffle your deck of creature and vegetable cards, put the pile facedown on the table and spread the cards out, so everyone can reach them and after explaining a handful of rules, you're ready to play A game about quickly grabbing creatures that are totally different & counting your beetroots by Andrew Beardsley and Behrooz Shahriari from Stuff By …
 
I don't know if you've ever come across it, but the final round, or sometimes the final few rounds, of a game often feel different to the rest of the game. There is the common term "end game" and the concept of an "end game trigger" in modern board games, so there is a relatively clear distinction between how a game finishes and the rest of the gam…
 
The city-states of Venice, Florence and Genoa and their economy were doing extremely well. However, their military strength was extremely lacking not only in size, but also in experience and conviction. It was clear that strong soldiers with real battle experience were needed. So when the English soldiers returned from the Crusades, they were welco…
 
Hey there. It's Joe Slack from the Board Game Design Course. Oliver was kind enough to let me write a guest post on his blog about victory conditions other than victory points to spark some new ideas and get you thinking about other new games to play. I hope you enjoy this article! Victory points (VP) are so common in modern board games, along with…
 
Sending someone a letter seems to have become a thing of the past and sending people postcards is mostly restricted to when you've gone away on holiday - but it's been ages since many of us have done that. However, many of us love sharing games with others, so it would be amazing if you could send someone a card that's also a game and even add a li…
 
Amelie Le-Roche is a veteran video game animator, creating games in her free time. She loves to explore different art styles and unique themes while creating family-friendly board games. She started Zerua Games in 2018 (which means "sky" in Basque) as a creative outlet. Read the audio transcript here: https://tabletopgamesblog.com/2022/03/02/amelie…
 
A large number of board games are about winning and losing. Sure, for many of us, it doesn't really matter whether we win or lose, as long as we have a good time, either with friends, family or alone. In co-operative games, you play against the game itself and either you win or the game does. The same goes for solo games, of course, which are basic…
 
It is the evening and everyone has gone home, but you. The library is dark and everything is quiet, when suddenly, out of the corner of your eyes, you think you can see a book opening all by itself in the horror aisle. As you turn to get a better look, you see Dracula standing there, with Bram Stoker's book by his feet. You know exactly what to do,…
 
Hi! My name is Lewis Shaw and I run Braincrack Games, a UK-based tabletop games publisher that's been bouncing around the scene since 2016. After my recent interview with Heavy Cardboard and a post on our own blog where I listed some of the reasons I don't think people should rush to start their own board game publishers, Oliver was kind enough to …
 
We were still trying to understand the special powers of the 8 elemental realms and how our dragon, wizard and warriors could take advantage of each and how we could impose our dominance over the other factions in this growing world. Each realm also had a giant monster that would wreak death and cause havoc amongst us, if we couldn't work out how t…
 
The idea that variability and replayability in board games have the same meaning is understandable, but of course, even though the two terms are related, they are independent of each other. Just because there is a lot of variability in a game doesn't mean that you'll want to play it over and over again and that it will feel different every time. Si…
 
It was quiet in the deep, dark wood. Everything was still and nothing stirred - but everyone was ready. The cats had taken up their position in every clearing, six birds were waiting patiently by their roost in one corner of the forest, the racoon had taken cover deep in the woods and the crows were biding their time in a handful of clearings of th…
 
The longer you have been part of the board game hobby, the more you are used to various terminology and conventions. You will also have become more accustomed to the way rulebooks describe games and how to read them to get the most out of them. However, if you're still new to the hobby then some things may not be obvious. In this article, I want to…
 
You were proud of your large library and your hard-working group of scribes was continually adding new tomes, with wonderfully decorative lettering and illustrations. However, you only had so much gold and the best scribes weren't cheap, but you had to somehow continue growing your collection of books to keep the bishop happy and outdo other abbots…
 
Albert Pinilla is an illustrator born in Barcelona. He is the co-creator and illustrator of the card game We Can Play: Women Who Changed The World and co-creator of the game publisher Julibert. He has also illustrated books such as The Interactive Constitution and Climate Change, the Choice Is Ours and has illustrated children's board games for com…
 
After setting up a board game and explaining the rules, if necessary, the next step usually is to decide who starts. Different games decide this differently, so in this article, I want to discuss the various ways in which board games choose the first player and I will also touch on games where the first player changes from round to round. Read the …
 
Around sixty million years ago on Earth, dinosaurs reigned supreme on land, but at sea, a giant struggle was still unfolding. Creatures were slowly adapting to the changes in their watery habitat and hoping to be victors in this fight for survival. The threat of a giant meteor striking the Earth was increasing all the time, so it was a race to beco…
 
Sometimes I get asked to recommend games for someone to play. As you can imagine, that's never easy and my first question tends to be what other games they have already played. If they're completely new to the hobby, I usually ask how many people they intend to play with, whether they're a competitive group, how long they're happy to play for. It's…
 
Spice, the final frontier. These are the adventures of the Houses Atreides and Harkonnen and the Imperium their five-round mission to explore Arrakis, to seek out new territories and new Spice Blows, to boldly go where no Fremen has gone before. This is Dune: A Game of Conquest and Diplomacy by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge, Peter Olotka, Greg Olotka…
 
I have mentioned it on this blog before, but my favourite way of being taught a new game is by diving right in. Teach me only the absolute minimum, just so I roughly know what sort of game we're playing and get an outline of what I'm trying to achieve and then let me start taking my turn. It's the sort of style of teaching that Paul Grogan of Gamin…
 
Oh no! Wizard Pebbledash’s assistants, Kevin and Annabelle, are missing! Of course, it is our task to find them and return them home safely. We are a motley crew of four daring adventurers of all shapes and sizes. Some of us have brave hearts, others have strong minds and there are some here who have a keen eye, but all of us are in high spirits an…
 
I want to continue my series on how to teach board games to others by talking about how you can learn the game yourself or ask others to learn it for themselves. After all, you can't teach others until you know how to play it yourself and you're a better teacher if you've actually played the game yourself. Also, sometimes it's actually fun to learn…
 
We had pulled off the heist of the century and everyone was still buzzing, pumped with adrenaline. We had made it safely back to our hideout and now it was time to divvy up the loot. We were about to count out cash, gold, gems, paintings and microfilms when the boss came up with a crazy idea. "Let's play Blackjack," they said, "and sort out who get…
 
Let me start by wishing you a Happy New Year. We all somehow made it into 2022, probably a little worse for wear, but we made it nonetheless. The world has changed a lot, but there are still many moments of positivity and hope. I don't want to make predictions about what might happen to us all in the future, but instead, I want to focus on the Tabl…
 
It's the 11th of July in the year of our Lord 1899. At 10am Mountain Daylight Time, the Union Pacific Express departed Folsom in Union County, New Mexico as scheduled, but only a few minutes after leaving the village's last buildings behind, heavily armed bandits started robbing the 47 passengers, taking purses and jewellery. A short while later, g…
 
Like probably everyone else does at the end of another calendar year, it's time for me to look back on 2021 and share with you what I've been up to. In fact, this year I want to share with you some more detail, so that you can see what is involved in doing what I do in the name of the Tabletop Games Blog. Read the full article here: https://tableto…
 
Yes, it's the time of year again where I list the 5 board games that I think were the best in 2021. The games don't necessarily have to have been published this year, but as long as I have played them in 2021, they qualify to appear on this list. Of course, as is now custom on the Tabletop Games Blog, the #1 game will receive the exclusive and pres…
 
In my third article about teaching games, I want to talk about light games. The advantage of these games is, that they are easy to teach and quick to learn - and often also quick to play. So, this article should be rather short, but as we know, the easier something is, the better you have to execute it and given that lighter games are usually the s…
 
Most of us will have a lot of spare time over the holidays and if we have board game enthusiasts among the family, this is the perfect time to set up and play some heavy games. We might also have more time to meet up with our games group and again, now is the time to get those heavy games to the table that we might not feel like playing of an eveni…
 
Continuing in my series of articles about how to teach games to others, I want to talk about maybe the best approach - and that is getting your games group to learn a game together. After all, for many of us, playing board games is a social activity and at the very least, it's a hobby we share. So it makes sense to also share the burden of teaching…
 
Continuing with my list of 5 board games for Christmas, this week I talk about medium weight games. These games are for those days over the holidays, when the weather is horrible outside and you want to be inside, all cozy and warm, maybe with a mug of hot chocolate and spend around an hour playing a board game with either your immediate family and…
 
Teaching someone the rules to a board game is never easy. I wouldn't say I'm an expert when it comes to teaching, but over time I've learned a few things that have helped me to become a better teacher. I found that different types of games require different types of teaching. So I thought I'd share with you what I've learned so far and maybe you pi…
 
Yes, Christmas is just around the corner, so it's time for me to put together lists of games you might want to get out over the holidays and play. I thought I'd start with a list of five games that you can play with all the family. These games are easy to teach and learn and quite quick to play. Most of them can be played up to four players, so if …
 
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