Monday, November 21, 2005

The Ones That Got Away: Frank Hamrick

The Bridges of Shangri-La

Yes, it's a bit dry, and a bit abstract. But I love the turn angst and the many, many quandary's each turn presents. You need to place your markers in a dozen places each turn. I also love the little wooden bridges and the awesome looking board at game's end. The only thing that keeps this one out of my top five - I can get very few people to play it with me. Otherwise, I would put this up with the top 3! (I realize I'm in a tiny minority here).

A Game of Thrones

At the time I voted, this one was hot with my group. At the time we felt it was the best "German style" wargame out there (I know it isn't a "German" game). However, it has slid back several notches since I voted for a number of reasons - the starting positions are a bit unbalanced, and it is too complicated to explain quickly or to appeal to my non-gaming friends and family. But for 6 blood-thirsty gamers, who have the time, this one (and its CoK expansion) is very good if you want a lighter war-game.


What was I thinking!! One of the 15 best games I own!? I put it 15th on my list because I had just gotten it and had played about 3 times - so it was still new, fresh, exciting. It's still fun, good. But it certainly isn't in the all-time "great" category. Anyway, here's what I wrote back then...

For pure fun, this one is great. It may make my top 15 because it is new, but we were all surprised at how interesting this one was. Lots of fun to play (the theme helps), great looking cards (terrific matte finish and feel) and wooden "mayors." Mechanics are simple. It is basically a bidding game with a few nice twists. Some aggression creates a bit of turn angst (players vie for control of various towns - Cactus Junction; Cold Mountain; Coyote City; Dry Gulch; and San Narciso). Lighter game that hits the spot for me. Only negative - some of the art of almost nude girls on a few of the cards. Totally unnecessary.



Blogger Seth Ben-Ezra said...

The Bridges of Shangri-La. Absolutely! I'm in the same boat as you. I love this game but have a hard time persuading others to play it.

2:45 PM  

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