Welcome back to the Zatu blog for the latest podcast recap. Can you believe we’re already onto Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6? Time flies when you’re having fun! Bush’s Board Game Thing sees Andy Bush celebrating the wonderful world of board games and the experience of gaming with friends Jess Temby and Brian Murphy. Each week, expect passion, enthusiasm, and multiple trips through gaming wormholes. This podcast is powered by Zatu – we’re making sure the board game cogs keep on turning. Every week, I’ll be bringing you the best bits here on the blog and letting you shop the podcast! Today, we’re looking back at Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6.
Last week’s episode was a lockdown special, where Bush and co. discussed playing board games online, over Zoom, and even by yourself. If you haven’t listened to the latest episode yet, you can catch up on every episode on your favourite streaming service.
Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6
Bush’s Board Game Episode 6 is all about science fiction. This week, we’re talking stars, aliens, outer worlds, and far-flung planets. Sci-fi is one of the most popular genres around, with countless cult films and books – and board games are no exception. However, our trio sometimes found that sci-fi games can be a tough sell and friends are often reluctant to give heftier sci-fi games a try. Our own Jess Temby said she prefers games based in real-life with relatable characters and scenarios.
In fact, one of Andy’s mates said they wouldn’t watch anything that couldn’t feasibly happen in real life! So, for this episode, we asked our Instagram followers: do you have any unusual life rules that you adhere to?
Where We’re Going, We Don’t Need Roads…
For Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6, our trio played a game of Back to the Future: Dice Through Time. This is a co-op game, which is unusual for Brian, who (as we’ve seen) enjoys getting inside his opponents’ heads to claim a psychological victory. In this game, you’ll take control of the iconic DeLorean and travel through time, chucking a whole load of dice in the process. This is a race against (and through!) time to stop the evil Biff from wrecking the space-time continuum.
It turns out that our trio didn’t actually work too well as a team! They ran out of time before completing their objectives – but luckily, at the end of the game, you get to find out where you went wrong. In this case, Brian placed the blame squarely on Jess. However, all three of the team got a little muddled with the rules.
Back to the Future: Dice Through Time is certainly one of the more complex games that the Board Game Thing team have played. Even Andy himself, who is normally a rules aficionado, took a while to get to grips with things. However, by the end, everyone was picking it up and definitely enjoying the bucket-of-dice aspect.
The next game on the menu in Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6 is an award-winning Kickstarter. Visitor in Blackwood Grove is an asymmetric reasoning game about a spaceship that’s crash-landed in the woods, the kid who witnesses the crash, and the federal agents trying to track down the ship. One player will be the alien (called The Visitor), one will be the Kid, and the others will play as the Agents. The Kid must get to the Visitor before the Agents track down the ship.
Bush, Jess, and Brian really enjoyed this one. They were lucky enough to play it in the pub before lockdown kicked in and found the concept super interesting. In fact, it was impressive that Brian and Jess understood the game at all since Andy had already had a couple of pints before explaining the rules! The Visitor has to give out simple clues and other players have to work out the rule that lets them get through the spaceship’s forcefield. Visitor in Blackwood Grove is a great pick for fans of Dixit, Mysterium, and Codenames.
Sci-Fi Pet Peeves?
We love hearing from podcast listeners on Instagram. In this sci-fi special, we asked you to tell us your sci-fi pet peeves.
Matthew sent us a message about perfect, pearly white teeth in post-apocalyptic worlds and, to be fair, he’s got a point! Meanwhile, Casey had a complaint about seamless audio/video communication across lightyears of space, with no delay whatsoever. This year has definitely made us all a bit more savvy when it comes to video calling. Are we seriously supposed to believe that no one in Star Trek ever forgot to take themselves off mute?
Brian’s sci-fi pet peeve is about fashion – why is it that we never see people wearing denim in space? What could possibly happen to make the human race abandon denim in the future?
Lockdown Gaming 2: Virtual Boogaloo
Next, our trio played Nemesis by Awaken Realms on Tabletop Simulator, which is an online platform similar to Board Games Arena but with another level of detail in the form of 3D pieces! (If you have no idea what we’re talking about, see last week’s blog here.)
Tabletop Simulator does take some time loading on older devices, like Brian’s ancient laptop, but it’s a great substitute for board game fans while we’re all in lockdown. While it won’t replace the joy of playing board games together around a table, it can certainly help to give us our fix in the meantime.
Finally for Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6, we’re talking about Twilight Imperium. This is perhaps the ultimate sci-fi board game. It’s a giant box – an all-day event full of empire-building and interstellar conflict, really giving you something to sink your teeth into. Andy’s friends recently played a game that lasted 8 hours, if you can believe it.
Get Your Sci-Fi Fix
Before we go, we want to give you a quick rundown of some other brilliant sci-fi games. Here are our honourable mentions for Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6.
Star Wars X Wing – a 2-player game which lets you and your opponent control rebel X-Wings and Imperial TIE fighters.
Star Wars Imperial Assault is a strategy game for 2-5 players, where one player controls the vast Empire while the others play as the Rebel Alliance heroes.
Finally, Star Wars Rebellion is a huge, all-day game for 2-4 players. There are different win conditions for Empire and Rebel players, so you’ll need to tailor your play-style accordingly.
Leaving the Star Wars universe momentarily, we also have Terraforming Mars. The title might not make it sound super exciting, but this is a hugely popular board game with a brilliant solo mode.
TIME Stories is another great sci-fi game, which is unusual in that it is modular – a new story is released every few months. It’s very Black Mirror-esque, with dystopian future scenarios.
Last but not least, we have The Captain is Dead. Bush and Brian played this sci-fi game a few years back and had a blast. You’re on a spaceship and the captain is (as you might have guessed) dead. It’s up to you and your fellow players to work together and save the ship from an alien invasion.
Brian’s Board Game Fact of the Week
We’re coming to the end of this Zatu podcast recap, but it wouldn’t be the Board Game Thing without Brian’s Board Game Fact of the Week. In Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6, we’ve got multiple marvellous Monopoly facts coming right up – what a treat!
You might have already heard of Monopoly’s mascot, Rich Uncle Pennybags. However, do you know the names of the other two characters on a Monopoly board? Over on the ‘Go to Jail’ space, we have Officer Edward Molloy. Meanwhile, Jake the Jailbird sits behind bars on the opposite corner of the board. Furthermore, did you know that the longest game of any board game ever recorded was a game of Monopoly which lasted for 70 consecutive days?
May The Podcast Be With You
And that’s all for Bush’s Board Game Thing Episode 6. We’ll see you back here next week for another blog recap. In the meantime, you can click here to shop the podcast and browse all the games that Bush and co have discussed across every episode. Stay tuned next week for a very special celebrity guest on Bush’s Board Game Thing!