New boardgame photo 

I'm extraordinarily excited to get this to the table - ROLLING HEIGHTS, a game about city building where you throw meeples like dice. It looks super neat, I like meeples, I love city building themes &, well. I hope it's as fun as it looks.

Civ game recommendations request 

What are your favourite civilisation-style tabletop games? I have THROUGH THE AGES & I do like it, though it's a bit mean & I'd love something with an actual map. I played MOSAIC at the weekend & enjoyed it well enough, though maybe I'd love something with more in-depth tech progression. I found TAPESTRY a bit too abstracted for my liking.

Any thoughts? SF/space/Fantasy equivalents totally acceptable.

Are there any tabletop games due out this year you're excited about? Big or tiny? I'm really interested in getting tip offs & recommendations about which titles I should be watching out for. I play so many games & the most reliable filter for finding good ones remains somebody telling me 'play this, it's neat'.

Tim Clare boosted

There's lovely! A complimentary and rather flattering review of my bok Everybody Wins on BGG, from Snowdonia creator Tony Boydell

Had 4 brand spanking new boardgames arrive this morning. Can't ever complain of a lack of stimulation! Of course the one with the dryest theme is the one I'm most optimistic about, but I'm open-minded about all of them. You never know, & sometimes a game with an iffy pitch turns out to be pure gold.

Observation about a rulebook 

I super-approve of this note in the rulebook of a game about marine science I'm learning.

MTG card thoughts 

I really like the combination of image & flavour text on this version of Curiosity. The last line showcases a little stylistic thing I think I first read the author Steve Aylett talking about: not using a question mark where grammatically you probably ought to, to make the thing stick up more because you're artificially flattening it. It works here particularly because it follows three rhetorical questions, then breaks the pattern. Small, but I like it.

MTG monologuing 

Sorry to friends unfamiliar with Magic for whom this will be incomprehensible, but I am deeply enamoured with Izzet commanders at the moment. I really like spellslinging with lots of value & triggers, I love dragon tribal in Izzet, I think Izzet offers the most fun with tokens & hell, it's probably the best colour combination for artifacts too. My Izzet decks feel flexible & varied when I play them, but it doesn't shut other people down either. I like it a lot.

Info about my writing podcast 

Probably most pertinent to newcomers are the 2 courses I made, the Couch to 80k Writing Bootcamp & the 100 Day Writing Challenge. They're free writing courses by podcast that ask 10 minutes of writing from you a day. Each episode has an introduction, a discussion of the concept to work on that day, then an exercise. The timer is in the episode. You just need a pen or a keyboard.

Couch to 80k:
100 Day Writing Challenge:

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Info about my writing podcast 

For them as don't know, I make a podcast for readers & writers called Death Of 1000 Cuts. It started off as a blog about getting better at editing your fiction, & I guess it still is, but with free courses & interviews with authors & critiques of listeners' first pages. It's here, if you're interested:
Here's a playlist with over 100 hours of interviews:

Boardgame folks: can anyone recommend excellent articles / books / videos where people talk about issues with & experiences of sexism / racism / other related issues of marginalisation when playing tabletop games or roleplaying games? All advice welcome.

Book stuff 

Interviewed someone for the book I'm working on this afternoon. They were so friendly & interesting. I know I sound a bit corny but I'm still just kind of wowed that so many people are so generous with their time when I ask. I get to speak with really engaging experts on subjects I really care about, & I learn stuff. It's like being permanently enrolled on a bespoke uni course that never ends.

Small box card game night 

Played these 3 small box, 2-player card games last night & really enjoyed all of them. First game of BEER & BREAD - very impressed with the hand-management aspects: storing cards, drafting & using each card for 1 of 3 actions.

I was on the fence about MANDALA the first time I played it, but last night it clicked for me & I think it's terrific. An abstract area-control game with square cards on a cloth board.

GEISHA'S ROAD is my favourite 2-player card game. Superb.

Tim Clare boosted

Speaking of @TimClare his Coward: Why We Get Anxious & What We Can Do About It is currently just 99p on Kindle:

if you or anyone you know is prone to anxiety it’s invaluable; undoubtedly the best and most thorough book I’ve read on the subject (and I’ve read quite a few).

Tabletop gaming friends: does anyone know good places to get an assortment of generic prototype game components? Meeples, hexes, cubes etc. There were some really good stalls at Essen but I didn't think to pick any up then. Now I feel I'd really love a good play with a bunch of game bits to think about ideas. I'm UK-based, so ideally somewhere cheap I wouldn't have ship from overseas.

Boardgame journalism thoughts 

On the other hand, if people feel they can't criticise a form of media then it's pretty much in a cultural death spiral. Tabletop gaming suffers from a glut of sponsored content that does promotion semi-disguised as disinterested analysis. Honest, open critical engagement with games exists, & some of it is really good & valued by the community, but I'm aware that even games that suck often represent lots of personal hopes, dreams, effort & money.

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Boardgame journalism thoughts 

One thing I find tricky in both book & game reviews is being critical of work I know a relatively small number of people have probably worked hard on. If a review isn't honest & clear then it doesn't serve its purpose - on the other hand, I'm always conscious that it's easier to criticise from the sidelines than to actually create something new. I never feel great about my negative comments - sometimes I feel like a gobby armchair quarterback.


Played LACRIMOSA last night, a game about finishing Mozart's final requiem after his death. The player boards are gorgeous & there's a nice action selection system each round where the top & bottom of each card do something different. Our scores were mostly tight by the end, though we got a few rules wrong & the reliance on language-agnostic components means there are a lot of symbols to learn. I like it & would like to play again.

Xmas-themed card game 

Tried out HOLLY JOLLY this evening, a festive set collection card game. The artwork is really nice - retro 50s Americana vibe. I am very fond of set collection games - it's a fun design space that titles like SUSHI GO! do a lot with. Hopefully I'll be writing a review of this one in the not-too-distant.

Magic, EDH 

Any folks on here play Commander over Spelltable? I've been playing Magic for over a year now. I have over 30 Commander decks but it's hard for me to find time for in person games where I live often. Not very finely tuned mid power ones with - mostly - budget cards. Say hi if you fancy it!

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