Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Review: Eight-Minute Empire board game

I seem to be forming a bit of a Red Raven Games series recently, with reviews of the beautiful Above and Below and its sequel Near and Far. To continue the theme, this week I'm taking a look at an older Ryan Laukat game that has grand ambitions on a tiny scale: Eight-Minute Empire.

Eight-Minute Empire - box art | Random Nerdery

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Review: Near and Far board game review

It's been a while now since we escaped barbarian hordes, fled across the country and founded our shiny new village in Above and Below. We've clearly gotten tired of exploring the cavernous world of Below, because it's time to set out into the big wide world on a brand new adventure. Legends tell of the Last Ruin, a hidden city far away across the wastes of Arzium where we'll apparently find an artifact that will grant our hearts' desires. Let the quest for the Voucher of Infinite Jaffa Cake Supply begin!

Near and Far box art

Saturday, 17 March 2018

AireCon 2018 - Convention Diary

I can't believe it's already been a week since I made the epic drive north to AireCon, an 'analog gaming festival' held in the Harrogate Convention Centre on Friday 9 - Sunday 11 March 2018. Having taken an age to decide whether or not it would be worth braving the 500 mile round trip, I'm so pleased I decided to go. I spent an amazing weekend meeting up with tons of lovely people and playing loads of great games, and wanted to share some of it here in case you've been in a similar dilemma.

AireCon 2018 - Sign | Random Nerdery

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Review: When I Dream card game

In a hugely competitive market place, publishers are finding all kinds of ways to make their game stand out from the crowd, from splashy cover art to fancy components to the occasional animal costume (I'm looking at you, Paul Grogan!)

But Repos Production definitely went the extra marketing-mile last summer, when they launched When I Dream into the board gaming stratosphere by literally tying it to a balloon and floating it into the upper atmosphere...

You know you need to work on your life goals when a board game makes it 20 miles closer to your dream of space travel than you ever will!

When I Dream - box art | Random Nerdery

Sunday, 25 February 2018

Review: Bärenpark board game

Bear-tetris, koala disputes, and for some reason, cause to use the phrase 'one toilet short of a draw' in a public place. I'm taking a look at Bärenpark, the latest offering from Phil Walker-Harding of Sushi Go! and Imhotep fame, that had me googling for Gobi bears and the umlaut keyboard shortcut!

Barenpark board game - Phil Walker-Harding - box art

I'm no expert, but I'm fairly certain that box doesn't depict safe bear-care procedure...

Sunday, 18 February 2018

AireCon Incoming!

Since I went to the UK Games Expo back in June I've been arguing a lot with myself over whether or not to go to AireCon, an analog gaming festival due to be held at the Harrogate Convention Centre on 9 - 11 March 2018. This month, after much deliberation, I finally caved; looks like I'm heading north next month!

AireCon logo

It's a 500+ mile round trip for me, so the cost and the drive are big factors, but the huge list of events going on over the weekend helped to tip me over the edge. I'm definitely heading for the seminars on game design and teaching games, plus I need to try out giant Tsuro and NMBR9! The whole con also sounds super-friendly and relaxed, so I can be a bit braver about joining in with everything.

This year the con is sponsored by publisher Czech Games Edition, comic and games shop Travelling Man and the UK Games Expo, with a guest list featuring the lovely folks from:
With less than three weeks to go, I'm super excited to try out a new convention. Wish me luck, and let me know if you're going too!


Friday 9 to Sunday 11 March 2018
Harrogate Convention Centre

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Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Cardboard - Above and Below board game review

I spend a lot more time than I really should on being jealous of the talents of others, and one of my recent targets of envy is artist and designer Ryan Laukat. Being imaginative enough to design games, artistic enough to illustrate them and organised enough to get them published would be a stretch for most people, but Ryan Laukat somehow manages to do all of them at once. But is it possible to juggle so many elements without dropping something along the way? Time to pick up a lantern, head out for adventure and find out!

Above and Below - box art