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  • Writer's pictureJW

... (Four Months Later)

Where was I. Like I said in A Game a Day, this year's theme is: "Play More Of My Owned Games and Play My Owned Games More". So, did I in February, March, April and May? Read on and find out.

In February I mainly played Marvel Champions (15x) and Terraforming Mars: Ares Expedition (13x). I don't remember much of that month. I guess it sucked. Most months do. 🤪


In March I played Toe-to-Toe Nu'klr Combat with the Rooskies, because I felt a sudden urge to drop the big one on Moscow. Then I calmed down with A Gentle Rain, revisited old favourites like Nusfjord and Warhammer Quest: The Adventure Card Game - before doing something silly. I played Ark Nova.


First impressions on Ark Nova - after 100 plays

I didn't think this game was very special for solo, then continued to play it until I'd done 50 sessions in the first month. I mean, it was on the table anyway.

Afterwards, I continued to 100 plays. Then I sold it.


Ark Nova. The Kenny Rogers of board games. I mean, it's not bad, but it isn't very interesting either. This hodgepodge of a game took a lot of cool mechanisms of great games of all time, added one or two of its own, then ended up being less than a sum of its parts. The artwork is taken from the classic Go Fish for Wildlife game. There are no cute animeeples. 😢

Multiplayer it drags on. After 2,5 hours you're yawning to your next turn - with still an hour to go. It has idiot take-that mechanisms like "I put a venomous snake in my zoo, so now you - zookeeper at the other end of the country - are poisoned." What? Fortunately us solo players don't have to deal with any of that nonsense.

It has a tension curve like you'll find in Wingspan: in the first round you've got seven actions, but no money to do what you want, in the last round you've got all the money and cards you've ever wished for, but just two turns, so take your pick. The whole game is a balancing act, and this is very interesting - on paper. I was really looking forward to Ark Nova, but for me there was no tension, and it left me completely cold. 🤷🏻


A plus? Set up takes 5 minutes max, a solo session 45 minutes - so I ended up using this as a filler game. Unfortunately I've got enough fillers, and better games that play in under an hour. Pity. I hope it found a better home.


Game(s) of the Month(s)

Okay, it's light, and the theme doesn't come through unless you try really really hard (nah, not even then), but I really enjoyed my plays of It's a Wonderful World. Easy to learn, hard to win.


Even lighter, but this time very thematic - and I had a good laugh while playing: Hit Z Road.


And right on the last day of May I played Endangered, which looks like a co-op game I'm really going to enjoy. It deserves a separate post.


Nuwe tume Uwe

First impression: the solo variant for Nova Luna may suffer from too much randomness for you to manage a good score consistently. The puzzle element isn't bad though and the game sure looks pretty. I also played this two-player with my daughter and that was very good.


Plastic soup

Oh. And I sleeved 800 cards. Don't tell the fish. 🤫



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Zerbique
Zerbique
07 ago 2022

JW, what's your best score at Nova Luna?

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JW
JW
08 ago 2022
Contestando a

Of course you did. But your sessions probably took three times as long as mine. I hope. 😳

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Zerbique
Zerbique
28 jul 2022

I received Nova Luna today and immediately played it. 106, 108, and finally 100, a win at last!


It feels so incredibly different from Habitats despite sharing the same core mechanics. I'm impressed by how these games (Habitats, Nova Luna, Sagani) manage to be very different despite their obvious similarities.


At first sight it may be that Sagani is more to my liking: it's less tight, more relaxing (but quite hard to beat frankly, I only managed 2 wins in more than 20 plays).

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Cadet Stimpy
Cadet Stimpy
28 jul 2022
Contestando a

I don't like the sound of the 2-phase scoring, either. 🙁

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Derek
Derek
11 jun 2022

Thanks for the Ark Nova info. I've had that high on my list for a while, but you're making me wonder if I should be moving it down now.

AND you also helped confirm why I put "It's a wonderful world" back on my list! Yay!

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Derek
Derek
15 jun 2022
Contestando a

Ok. High up the wishlist it stays. Thanks JW!

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Cadet Stimpy
Cadet Stimpy
11 jun 2022

Hey, JW, you said you played Nova Luna with your daughter. When you play against her, do you go easy on 'er, or do you show no mercy? 😄


P.S. Who won?

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Cadet Stimpy
Cadet Stimpy
11 jun 2022
Contestando a

I love fantasy, too. Most of the stuff I read is that, or Sci-Fi.

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Cadet Stimpy
Cadet Stimpy
11 jun 2022

The robot saying, "Why stop now, just when I'm hating it?" made me laugh out loud. JW, for a grumpy bastard, you're often quite humorous. 😄

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Gloomknight
Gloomknight
11 jun 2022
Contestando a

It’s funny you recommend that book. I just saw a copy for sale the other day and thought “I should probably give this a try.” I’ve always heard a lot about it.

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