Let's start it like this. Board games fucking rock.
I've been jaded without knowing it towards the board games for a while now. After a while, everything starts feeling pretty similar what with the moving pieces around a board, dice rolls, landing on stuff, and well...you know the drill. That's not to say that it's a bad formula, but it just starts to feel pretty soulless after a while.
Anyway, I have some friends who are into gaming in pretty much every form, though video games take a back seat to them. This is interesting since I'm into gaming in pretty much every form, with video games taking the front seat, jamming down the gas pedal and rocketing me up into the atmosphere, only to slam on the brakes, projecting me through the windshield.
(Andrew and Amber, you complete me.)
So, they have quite an extensive collection of board games which they have been kind enough to share with my wife and me. On Sunday, we got to experience the awesome that is Heroscape. Basically the way it works is you pick some army units, all of which have differing stats like attack power, move speed and defensive skill. They also have unique abilities, like the ability to parachute onto the board late in the game, put up a smoke screen so they cannot be attacked, and grenade chucking. Brilliant. And did I mention that the units are well crafted plastic figures with a pretty incredible amount of detail and character?
You then take these units and place them on a board which you create. The landscape consists of hexagonal spaces which you can snap together, stack on top of each other or connect with bridges. If you have some creativity, or are good at building houses in The Sims, you'll be able to have a different game experience every time. Game types consist of Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Flag, and King of the Hill. Yes these are terms from multiplayer video games, but it's eerie how well they fit here.
This all combines to create a fantastic gaming experience, the likes of which I have not had in years. Shockingly, the game is published by Milton Bradley which is a mainstream publishing house, responsible for games like Life, Battleship and Hungry Hungry Hippos. In all fairness, maybe I shouldn't be too hard on good ol' Milton. If Wikipedia is to be believed, these guys are responsible for some pretty unique games. It's just been so long since I've played one of those unique games.
I've got more board games that I need to talk about as well, but not right now. I'm done here.