Get Your Jurassic Park On With Tiny Epic Dinosaurs

Anyone who’s seen Jurassic Park knows that dinosaurs and theme parks do not mix well. However, no one seems to have told the rich bigwigs inside Tiny Epic Dinosaurs, because these greedy bidders are looking for their next big attraction! In the world of Tiny Epic Dinosaurs, modern science has advanced enough to allow us to recreate our prehistoric dino friends. This gives independent ranchers a new role in breeding and wrangling these dangerous reptiles. As a player of the board game, you’ll have to combine dinosaur ranching, resource management, and worker placement if you want to build the best dino farm on the market.

6 Rounds, 6 Phases, Countless Dinosaurs

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs assigns each player their own team of ranchers to control. The goal of the game is to obtain dinosaurs in order to breed and sell them to the highest bidders to use for high thrill theme parks. The game is played over the course of six different rounds, each consisting of six unique phases. The first phase requires you to harvest any resources in your farm that the dinosaurs aren’t already eating.

The second phase is where you really put your ranchers to work, assigning them a multitude of tasks aimed at acquiring and breeding more dinosaurs. You’ll capture and buy new dinosaurs, build up barriers to hold them, research technologies and new breeds of dinosaur, boost your farm’s security or supplies, and more. You’ll have to figure out the best strategy for breeding the most dinosaurs if you want to blow the other ranches out of the water.

In the third phase, your ranchers will return to finish their work at the farm, while the fourth phase has you arrange your ranch however you want. Arranging your ranch is important in order to make sure the dinosaurs are properly placed in the correct barriers to ensure they don’t escape.

Once everything is set, it’s time to feed the dinosaurs. Phase five requires you to feed each and every dinosaur because any dinosaur that doesn’t get fed will escape and threaten the safety of your farm. Dinosaurs are dangerous cattle, and breeding them is not without its risks! Finally, the sixth and final phase of each round has you breed matching dinosaurs. Each pair of matching dinosaurs that is properly enclosed gives you one more baby dino to add to your farm.

Winning the Game

To claim victory in Tiny Epic Dinosaurs, you’ll need to earn the highest number of victory points at the end of six rounds. While breeding new dinosaurs is an excellent way to collect points, you can also earn points through research developments as well as any public or private contracts you acquire. Each player gets a private contract at the beginning and middle of the game with specific rules on completing it. You’ll also need to complete these private contracts at the same time as a public contract. This can make it tricky when you’re racing against someone else trying to complete the same public contract.

The Laboratory Mini Expansion

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs comes with a Laboratory mini expansion that provides each player with an additional board. This board gives you a map connected by blue, green, and red lines that lead to spaces that offer you extra bonuses from dinosaurs to research cards. Players will have to collect matching colored tiles in order to move along the lines. This adds a puzzle-like quality to the game that makes the strategy even more intricate.

Don’t Underestimate Those Tiny Epic Dinosaurs!

Tiny Epic Dinosaurs is playable by 1-4 players, which is definitely a bonus for kids who like single-player board games. It’s also suitable for ages 14 and up, so it’s more appropriate for teenagers and adults than it is for younger kids. Playing time lasts around 30 minutes to an hour. Tiny Epic Dinosaurs has plenty of opportunity for strategy, especially when you add the Laboratory mini expansion to it. You’ll love the cute little dinosaur tokens that come with the game, as they’re each carefully crafted to represent different colored dinosaurs. If you take a walk on the wild side and buy Tiny Epic Dinosaurs, you won’t regret it. Buy a copy or two today!

It’s Survival of the Thriftiest With Altiplano

Altiplano is a board game named after the South American highlands of the Andes, where the game is set. Resources are limited in Altiplano and the competition is high. This board game pits players against each other to see who will build their bag with the most resources, giving them the most points by the end of the game. Players can produce resources such as alpaca, cacao, corn, fish, and silver, each of which has its own characteristic and place where it can be used. You’ll have to come up with the best strategy for selling, trading, and producing goods if you want to beat out the other players and win the game!

Embrace Your Role

The goal of Altiplano is to have the highest amount of points by the end of the game. Each player starts the game with a player board and one role tile. A role tile gives you your starting goods as well as the power to do one action that no one else can. This will inform your decision making as you plan to build your bag through producing resources, gathering goods, and more.

Starting roles can be anything from a farmer to a fisherman. While roles like the fisherman require you to get the extensions relating to fish, other roles can enable you to ignore your main action and focus on a different path to get points.Thanks to the seven different starting roles and the Traveler expansion, Altiplano is easily replayable without losing any of the intrigue.

Contents of the Game

Altiplano comes with colorful player boards that are labeled with each of the main locations, as well as the goods they contain and the player count. This board game also comes with cute little location tiles, road markers, player pawns, goods tiles, and coins that you use to trade goods, produce more resources, and build your bag. All of these pieces are made from sturdy, thick cardboard that ensures you can play the game for years without it wearing out.

Part of the fun of Altiplano is collecting all of the little trinkets into your bag and placing them delicately on the board. It’s definitely a visual game, as you can physically see your goods stack up in the form of cute little alpaca tiles or fish tiles.

Building Your Bag

Altiplano is a board game that emphasizes strategy. Each turn gives you many options to take, but the unique power you get from your role tile will definitely influence your path by giving you a specific advantage. It’s important to keep in mind the contents of your bag as you play, as this can allow you to plan several turns ahead since you know which goods are coming. Not all goods are created equal, however, as you might get stuck with something useless like glass.

Building houses scores you loads of bonus points at the end of the game. Whether you focus on building houses, producing cloth or silver, or filling your warehouses, you’ll find a strategy that carries you to victory.

Altiplano Traveler Expansion

Altiplano comes with an expansion called Altiplano: The Traveler. This expansion to the board game includes a traveler wandering through the Altiplano who offers new ideas and assets to grow and exchange resources. The expansion makes the strategy for the game even more complex, giving you new ways to grow your wealth while also throwing in more wrenches to your plan.

Altiplano: Resources May Be Limited But The Fun Is Not

Altiplano is playable by anywhere from 2-5 players. This makes it nice and flexible for people looking for a fun family game or some one-on-one competition. Because it’s suitable for ages 12 and up, it’s complex enough for adults to enjoy while also being accessible to teenagers.  Playing time lasts around one to two hours, which should be more than enough time to fight for resources and employ your winning strategy.

Altiplano is not as instantly playable as some other board games, as it can take a few plays before you really start to get the lay of the land. However, once you’re into it, this board game can provide countless hours of fun with its ability to develop complex strategies. Gather your goods and don’t let the alpacas run loose!

Buy your copy today!

Explore Lords Of Waterdeep

From the magical world of Dungeons & Dragons comes Lords of Waterdeep, a strategy board game that pits secretive and power-hungry masked rulers against one another in a campaign to grasp control of the city. Lords of Waterdeep combines resource gathering with card playing in an intricate and fantastical experience that will have you backstabbing your closest friends to win some much-needed victory points. The fantasy and political intrigue of Lords of Waterdeep elevate this board game from a forgettable worker placement game into a magical quest.

The Masked Lords Of Waterdeep

In the Forgotten Realms, there lies a most fantastical city named Waterdeep, the City of Splendors. As one of the masked Lords of Waterdeep, you’ll secretly recruit adventurers to embark on quests and bring back rewards with which you can grow your political influence. Lords of Waterdeep is all about the secret back-alley dealings and double crosses that determine who holds the true power of the city.

At the beginning of the game, each player will take on the role of one of the five Lords of Waterdeep. The game box comes with five different cardstock player mats with which you’ll conduct your various deeds. It also comes with hundreds of different cards, cubes, meeples, and other little colored trinkets that fill the game with colorful flourishes.

Adventurers, Rewards, And Quests

As one of the Lords of Waterdeep, you’ll control agents who will recruit adventurers to perform certain quests for them and earn rewards. These rewards will sometimes come in the form of victory points, which boost your influence over Waterdeep and get you one step closer to winning the game. Whoever wins the most victory points by the end of the eighth round is declared the winner, so you’ll have to act fast if you don’t want to fall behind.

The adventure resources are represented as purple, orange, black, and white cubes that are based on the four character classes of Dungeons & Dragons. Certain adventurers are better suited for certain quests—will your adventurer succeed in Skullduggery or does their strength lie in Commerce? You’ll need to stay on your toes and strategize if you want to block the other Lords from gaining control.

Scoundrels Of Skullport Expansion

A single expansion was released in 2013 called Scoundrels of Skullport, which adds two expansion modules to the base game of Lords of Waterdeep. Whether you dive into the Undermountain module; explore the Skullport module; or add both expansions to the game, you’ll get a whole host of new game boards, cards, and tokens with which to play.

Undermountain adds an interesting new mechanic that allows you to place resources on the game board spaces while also offering you more expensive but rewarding quests. Skullport adds the corruption mechanic to the game, which includes the new corruption track game board and 25 corruption tokens. These can rob you of crucial victory points and make winning the game that much harder. If you’re a fan of Lords of Waterdeep and are looking to further explore the magical Forgotten Realm, the Scoundrels of Skullport expansion is an excellent addition to the base game.

Take Over The City Of Splendor With Lords Of The Waterdeep

Lords of Waterdeep is playable by 2-5 players, so it’s perfect for small to medium groups of friends who are looking for a new strategy board game to add to the mix. Dungeons & Dragons lovers will enjoy the familiar fantasy elements, while fantasy lovers in general will marvel at the creative imagination of the game’s designers.

Lords of Waterdeep is a somewhat lengthy game, with a playing time of one to two hours. However, hardcore strategy gamers will find gameplay completely manageable, especially when compared to most D&D quests. Lords of Waterdeep is also suitable for ages 12 and up, so it’s a great game for younger players who are looking to get into more advanced concepts of strategy and fantasy. While there are many tokens and cards to keep track of throughout the game, both beginners and advanced players alike can enjoy the adventure that lies within the Lords of Waterdeep.

Adjust your mask and plot your way to victory!

Build a World with Terraforming Mars

Popular board games like Risk and Pandemic deal with the incredibly high stakes of worldwide catastrophe and war.  Terraforming Mars, however, leaves Earth behind completely in an effort to build a sustainable life on our closest neighboring planet.  In the 25th century, giant corporations seek to initiate projects to make Mars hospitable.  As players of the game, you’ll have to work together to achieve these goals while also earning points for your own commendable work.

Playing Cards

Terraforming Mars comes with over 200 different project cards that you can buy and use during each round.  These cards represent different projects that aid in your overall goal of terraforming Mars, including small things like introducing plant life or giant tasks such as mining the moons of planet Jupiter.  Some cards will also give you immediate bonuses or help boost your resource production.

While buying the cards comes with a small cost, the cost of putting them into play depends on the size of the project.  You’ll have to build up enough income to afford some of the costlier projects if you want to beat your fellow competitors and win the most victory points.

Terraforming Rating

Your Terraforming Rating is a special indicator that determines your victory point score, your income, and the amount of resources you produce.  Every time you perform an action that furthers the completion of one of the three main terraforming conditions, you’ll boost your Terraforming Rating and become that much more powerful.

Successfully Terraforming Mars

In each round, players go through three phases.  The first phase is the research phase, where each player is given the opportunity to buy randomly drawn cards.  Then, during the action phase, players can perform 1-2 actions such as playing a card, using the action of a card in play, or small tasks like converting heat into a temperature raise that slowly help to terraform Mars. 

While each player’s goal is to obtain victory points through buying cards and completing projects, the ultimate goal of Terraforming Mars is to complete the three terraforming conditions that make Mars habitable.  Once the oxygen level and temperature have both been raised to sufficient levels and enough of Mars has been covered by ocean, then the game ends.  Players will then count all of their points based on their Terraforming Rating and achievements, and the player with the highest score wins.

Terraforming Mars Expansions

Terraforming Mars comes with five unique expansions that add cool elements to the game such as the planet Venus or a Martian government.  With the Hellas and Elysium expansion, you’ll play with a new double-sided board that can make gameplay last for hours of fun.  The Venus Next expansion transports the game from Mars to Venus, as mankind’s colonization of the planets knows no bounds.

The Colonies expansion adds different areas around the solar system that players can use to produce resources without needing to play cards.  The Turmoil expansion adds the intriguing element of a Martian government that players can manipulate to achieve their own ends and earn elusive bonuses.  Several more expansions are currently in the works as Terraforming Mars continues to be a popular game for all kinds of players.

Terraforming Mars Is Out Of This World

Terraforming Mars can be played by anywhere from 1-5 players.  The fact that the game is so versatile means that you can enjoy it just as easily playing it on your own as you can with your entire family or friend group.  While there are many interesting elements and complex strategies involved with Terraforming Mars, it’s not too difficult to comprehend, and should be suitable for ages 12 and up. 

Terraforming Mars is a bit of an endeavor, as playing time usually lasts around 2 hours.  If you add one of the optional expansions to the mix, you may be looking at an entire night spent building cities and hurling asteroids.  Still, Terraforming Mars is certainly interesting enough that you won’t become tired of it before the game is over.  With a creative premise and endless potential for strategy, Terraforming Mars is one of the top strategy board games on the market.

 

How to Play Terraforming Mars

Wealth and Prestige Reign Supreme in Splendor

Nobles and merchants abound in Splendor, a chip-collecting card game that requires you to earn wealth and prestige in order to be crowned the victor.  If you’ve ever had a longing for the days of nobility and art, you’ll love the Renaissance theme that brings back memories of a time filled with wealth and luxury.  Splendor is an intriguing wealth-building game that’s simple to learn but full of complex strategy and opportunity.

Tokens, Cards, and Tiles

The goal of Splendor is to buy as many gems and build as many shops as possible to earn prestige points and win the game.  Gems are represented by different poker-style chips called gem tokens, which come in seven colors from shining emerald to captivating onyx.  The combination of cards and chips may make Splendor seem like a game of poker, but there’s a lot more to this imaginative game.

Players will purchase and reserve 90 development cards, which each have their own price tag of a certain number of gems.  These development cards can be purchased to earn prestige points alongside certain special bonuses that may invite a visit from a Noble.  The game comes with 10 noble tiles that get triggered once a player reaches a certain amount of bonuses, gracing them with their presence (and extra prestige points, of course).

Buying and Reserving

Each turn, players are given one of three choices: they can collect gems, buy and build a card, or reserve a card for later.  When collecting gems, players can choose three different kinds or two of the same kind of gem depending on their needs and their long-term strategy.  If players buy and build a card, they have to pay its price in gems before they can add it to their playing area.

Reserving a card for later is one of the sneakiest elements of the game, as this move can either be used to ensure that you get a certain card or be used to prevent another player from getting it.  It pays to be devious, however, as reserving a card also earns you a golden joker chip, which you can use in place of any type of gem.

Prestige Points

Whether you choose to collect gems, buy cards, or reserve cards, you’ll have to come up with your own unique strategy for collecting the most prestige points and winning the game.  The winner of Splendor is whichever player manages to collect 15 prestige points first—if there’s a tie, then the winning spot goes to the person who purchased the fewest development cards.  This can upset your winning strategy at the last second, so it pays to keep in mind alternative routes to earning prestige points.

Splendor Spinoffs and Expansions

Splendor was first published in 2014, with an expansion titled Cities of Splendor released three years later.  This expansion is really four separate expansions that can each revolutionize gameplay in their very own way.  The Cities will replace the noble tiles with city tiles, forcing you to fulfill certain objectives in order to win the game.  The Orient is a particularly fun expansion that adds three decks of cards, giving you special powers that you can tap into to dominate the competition.

Splendor also came out with a Marvel spinoff version that brings together your favorite super heroes in a quest to stop the evil Thanos.  Players will gain Infinity Points instead of prestige points, and they’ll also enjoy a different endgame trigger and victory conditions.  The Splendor spinoff is any Marvel fan’s dream come true!

Splendor: A Renaissance Card Game

Splendor can be played by 2-4 players ages 10 and up, so it’s best suited for small families or groups of friends.  Playing time lasts about 30 minutes, which is enough to allow players to enjoy a quick game or two in a night.  

Splendor is definitely a family-friendly game that’s simple enough for the kids to enjoy, but it also allows for more advanced players to experiment with riskier strategies.  Splendor will have you brimming with anticipation as you pick your cards and amass your wealth.  Who knows, you may even attract the attention of the nobility!

 

How to Play Splendor

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