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What’s On Our Wishlist – April


Jacob Dunkley - Daybreak

Hopefully coming out in the next few weeks and one of the games I’m most excited to try this year is Daybreak, the new co-operative game from Pandemic designer Matt Leacock and also new designer Matteo Menapace. However instead of stopping the end of the world through the spread of diseases as in Pandemic, in Daybreak you will be working to stop the world getting too hot.

In Daybreak, each player controls a world power and it is your job to work with the other players through building technologies and changing policies to hopefully stop the global temperature from getting too high or too many of the world’s population going into crisis. Like Pandemic, you collectively win if you achieve the goal of bringing down global emissions.

I have been so excited about Daybreak since I first heard of it as Pandemic has long been one of my favourite games, along with the wonderful Legacy versions being some of the most memorable games I’ve played. As much as I love Pandemic, this feels like a real departure in terms of gameplay but still having the co-operative nature at its heart. From everything I’ve read and watched on this game, this seems to combine the excellent co-operative play of Matt Leacock’s previous games with the card play and engine building of something like Terraforming Mars.

This game looks so thematic and full of meaningful decisions where you can’t always do what you want to do and have to continually compromise. I’ve read through the rules and love how low the complexity appears to be, the mechanics aren’t overly complex and the play is broadly simultaneous meaning players aren’t waiting long for their next turn. However, each decision you need to make in Daybreak will give you meaningful choices to make and the need to really work together with the other players should make for plays of this game that will hopefully be as memorable and dramatic as some of my favourite games of Pandemic.


Dan Street Phillips - Tapestry

I have been a fan of Stonemaier Games for a few years now with Scythe and Viticulture being some of my favourite games to play, easily top ten material. Recently I watched a video that ordered their games from seventeen down to first place and to my horror I knew very little about their top spot. Tapestry. Now, I am now showing my ignorance as Tapestry is a very popular game and I had a vague awareness of its controversy around balancing but I had never had the chance to play. So this week I took it upon myself to watch as many how to play videos as I could find and jump onto Board Game arena to give it a go. First of all it is a lot simpler a game than I had been preparing for. It’s essentially a civilisation building game where you begin by choosing a civilization with key abilities, a capital city map and you move up and tracks building your exploration, technology, military and scientific prowess with the strongest civilisation after five eras claimed the winner. After playing a few games online I am now set on buying it. The production is great with illustration from Andrew Bosley who was made famous by his gorgeous illustrations for Everdell and lovely miniature buildings, pre painted, to place onto your capital city. There are also a handful of really interesting expansions that offer different tracks like Art and Culture which I love the sound of. And to top it all off, Folded Space created an insert for the original box to hold everything the base game and expansions have to offer! With my birthday coming up, this is definitely top of the list.


Ryan Burdus - Last Of Us: Escape The Dark

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love the Escape the Dark board game series, and this new addition is no exception. I mean, who doesn't love anything zombie-related, especially when it comes to survival games! It's an instant way to win me over in my eyes.

Before I get more into my opinions on the game, I should probably tell you some information about the game. The game is created by ThemeBorne in co-operation with Naughty Dog, and it's a 1-4 player survival card game based on the Last of Us games where people go through randomly drawn story cards and play through scenarios in which the aim is to survive and escape. The game is set to be released 1st of July this year and is definitely high on my wishlist!

Now, you may be wondering why It's high on my wishlist and what makes it so different from the others to make it worth getting (apart from the Last of Us connection). Well, this game has specifically leaned into having more of an RPG open-exploration style compared to the other Escape The Dark games, which have more of a linear type of story to follow. Instead of having one randomly drawn stack of cards, this game has multiple stacks placed around a map in which players would have to go around to gather resources and complete an overarching goal as a group. For myself, this adds so much more immersion and story to the game and mixes it up with decision-making. It's now not "Who enters first?" and more of "Which way do we go? Where are the resources we need? And where the hell are all the zombies!?" These conflicts and considerations are the meat and filling to the ever-growing pie, which is Last Of Us: Escape the Dark, and it's looking more and more likely that it'll be a go-to in my household.


Harvey Brewer - Flamme Rouge

The issue most of us board-gamers have is that it is often very hard to pin down just ONE game that we want at any given time. So being the difficult person that I am, I have settled for two!

The first one is Flamme Rouge. This is a game that I’m really excited about because it combines two of my favourite mechanics – hand management, and risk and reward. I’m also interested in the flexibility of the game; being someone who often tries to introduce new people to my games, having something that I can adapt in both difficulty and length will prove very useful. On this, I really like the look of the modular track board, which allows groups to design their own tracks, keeping the game fresh and different every time you play; something that’s very important given how often I play my games! It also has a whole host of expansions which add extra track pieces, and tokens/cards for more players.

The second game on my list is Sky Team. I’ve been wanting to try this one for ages, and for good reason. Sky Team is a cooperative game for two players, in which you and a friend are pilots attempting to land a plane. In tackling this feat, you will have three main things to pay attention to – avoiding crashes with other aircraft, overshooting the airport, or stalling in the sky and plummeting to a grisly end. What really interests me about Sky Team is that it is unique in the fact that although you will be working with your fellow pilot to land the plane safely, you won’t be able to communicate during the round, so the game is as much about your own judgement as it is about working with other people. All in all, I’ve only heard good things about Sky Team, and I can’t wait to try it out when I get the opportunity.


Matthew Morgan - Pandmeic Legacy Season 1

With a strict personal budget for board and Trading card games, my wishlist is always piling up with new additions that I’m eager to play:

I picked up the base game for Pandemic last Christmas and it’s quickly become one of our most played games in the house, and for good reason. It’s a fun co-op game that can get out of hand as quickly as a, well, virus. But somehow, they found a way to make things even more interesting.

In the legacy version, you play over multiple games with far more at stake. Each virus spreads quicker, there’s harder choices to make, and if you’re not careful you could end up permanently losing cities and countries. Only through careful choices with other players can you come out of the experience only slightly unscathed.

Pair that with the fact I haven’t had the pleasure of playing a Legacy game yet, and you can see why it’s the top of my list.


One Piece the Card Game EB01 Booster pack:

As an avid One Piece player with a regionals event coming up, I’m always eager to get my hands on the next sets, and this is no different.

This is a far smaller set than the OP releases and has about half the amount of cards available; but it makes up for it in card power. Each colour receives a few cards that fit nicely into the top tier meta decks and hold their own very well.

But that’s not all, there’s also the coveted manga rare card to get your hands on, and in this set it features the adorable Chopper Chopper with a scene plucked from the manga as his background art. Add all these reasons together, and it’s no wonder I can’t wait to start cracking packs when they arrive in the UK.