Only Logic Can Crack The Code With Mastermind

Do you love using your skills of deduction to crack codes and solve puzzles? If so, you’ll love Mastermind, a code-breaking game developed by Israeli telecommunications expert and postmaster Mordecai Meirowitz. Meirowitz invented the game Mastermind based off of the pencil and paper game called Bulls and Cows, putting a unique spin on it and swapping out the pencil and paper for colorful plastic pieces. Mastermind is a game of logic and deduction, where players must alternately make and break codes in an attempt to prove who’s the true mastermind.

Codemaker Vs. Codebreaker

In this two-player game, each round will have one player taking on the role of codemaker while the other becomes the codebreaker. The codemaker must secretly place four different colored pegs behind a secret screen on the game board, while the codebreaker is allowed to make several guesses as to which pegs are located where. The codemaker wins points for every guess the codebreaker makes until they either crack the code or run out of turns.

Winning a round requires more than just a lucky guess, however. Codebreakers will have to build upon the information gleaned from their previous guesses in order to figure out the right combination of colored pegs. Every time the codebreaker makes a guess, the codemaker will give them feedback as to which part of their guess is correct. You may have all the right pegs in all the right places, but are they all the right color, too? Only the smartest brain can crack the code fast enough to win the game.

Pieces Of The Game

Mastermind was inspired from the paper and pencil game Bulls and Crows, but the cool little game pieces are what make it truly a standout game. Players will use a cutely designed decoding board to make their guesses, which is set up with cool little rows to place the pegs and view previous guesses. The hidden compartment visible only to the codemaker is a neat little addition that adds to the secrecy of the game.

The colored pegs are also fun to play with, as they make quite a colorful sight when you arrange them across the board. The code pegs come in six different bright colors with round heads, while the smaller key pegs come in black and white with flat heads. One of the most unique elements of Mastermind is that, since you communicate solely through pegs, you don’t even need to speak the same language to play the game!

Mastermind Variations

Mastermind was released in 1972, and since then there have been several different variations that expand upon the simple peg-based game. Royale Mastermind reduces the amount of holes per row to only three instead of four, but adds five differently shaped pegs to make the game even more advanced. Mastermind44 also expands upon the initial game by allowing four players to enjoy it instead of two players.

Word Mastermind combines the logical deduction of Mastermind with the wordplay of Scrabble by forcing you to come up with four letter words for the other player to guess. There’s even a Walt Disney Mastermind that uses your favorite beloved Disney characters instead of colors!

Mastermind: Some Codes Were Made To Be Broken

Mastermind is a two-player game, although the 20-minute playing time means that you can easily pass it around and give everyone a chance to play. Players will decide how many rounds they want to play in advance, so the game really can last as short or as long as you want it to. Mastermind is also suitable for ages 8 and up, so if you’re looking for a game that allows kids to play around with the concept of logic and deduction, Mastermind is the perfect introduction.

Mastermind is a simple game with a very simple premise, although the competitive nature of the game can make for some pretty high stakes. There’s nothing like pulling out the decoding board and lining up the pegs to settle a score on who’s got the higher IQ. If a battle of the minds sounds like your idea of a good time, Mastermind is the game for you!

Set your code and let’s get cracking!

KeyForge: Card Game Of The Gods

Nothing is more motivating than the ever-present thirst for knowledge and power. In the world within KeyForge, power is nothing without knowledge, and you’ll have to fight tooth and nail to access the hidden secrets in the Vaults. A strong heart and a diligent mind are required to find the right combination of cards to grow your stores of Amber while also fighting your enemies. With thrilling battles and a beautifully realized fantasy world, KeyForge is a card game with plenty of imagination.

The World Of The Crucible

KeyForge is set in the world of the Crucible, which was artificially built by the god-like Archons. These powerful beings forged the Crucible from the pieces of countless planets, and are in constant battle with each other in the pursuit of knowledge of their origins. KeyForge is a race between different factions of Archons to be the first to collect three keys and gain the invaluable knowledge and power locked away within the Vaults of the Crucible.

Archon Decks

KeyForge is the first unique deck game in that it is sold in individual decks, each with their own random selection of 37 cards. Unlike most deck-building games, each KeyForge deck is designed to be unchangeable and played right out of the box. One of the best parts of KeyForge is the fact that each deck comes with its own name, which includes such gems as “The Boy Who Basically Head-butts Heaven.”

You won’t need to worry about shelling out countless dollars to collect different decks, but can enjoy the knowledge that you’re the only person out there with that exact combination of cards! This can create a fun challenge that forces you to make the most of the cards you’re dealt, finding the winning combination to push you forward into victory.

Declaring Houses And Collecting Amber

Gameplay involves two players each using their own deck of cards to play different creatures, actions, upgrades, and artifacts. Every card in KeyForge is associated with a specific House, and each deck comes with cards from three different Houses. At the beginning of each turn, you’ll have to declare which House you’re playing from. You can then play as many or as few cards as you like from that House during your turn. The potential to play multiple cards at once can help make for some pretty eventful turns where you can savage the competition.

You’ll have to collect enough Amber in order to forge your three keys and unlock the Vaults. Certain creatures can provide you with Amber and can also be used to fight the competition. You’ll have to balance your efforts to collect Amber with your battle tactics in order to defend yourself long enough to win the game.

KeyForge Expansion Sets

KeyForge releases new cards regularly through their expansion sets, which add new Houses to the mix that provide for even more card combinations. The original set, KeyForge: Call of the Archons, comes with two starter decks and two unique Archon Decks for a total of 370 cards. Later expansion sets such as Age of Ascension or Worlds Collide add over 200 new cards each, while also throwing in new Houses such as Saurian Republic or Grand Star Alliance to make gameplay even more exciting.

Answer The Call Of The Archons With KeyForge

KeyForge is a 2-player game, so it’s definitely more suited for one-on-one situations than it is for a family game night. Fans of Magic the Gathering or other fantasy will love the creativity and potential for complex strategy building that KeyForge allows. Newcomers to card games will also enjoy the fact that they won’t have to invest a lot of time and money into building their deck—all you need is a starter deck and you’re ready to play!

Playing time lasts around 15-45 minutes, but turns go very quickly thanks to the potential for playing many cards at once. Players will love the fast-paced back and forth as they’re forced to strategize on the spot and outmaneuver their opponent’s every move. KeyForge is also suitable for ages 14 and up, so young adults will especially enjoy the fantastical world within the game.

Gain the knowledge and power to make you victorious!

Lose Yourself In The Fog Of Love

Every day people meet, fall in love, and enter into the hard work of making their relationship last. Any lovebirds looking to play a fun game full of love and optimism need look no further than Fog of Love. Playing Fog of Love is like being the romantic leads in your very own rom-com, dealing with all of the ups and downs of making love work. Similar to the real world, Fog of Love forces you to follow your own dreams while trying to do the best you can for your partner. Will you make it through with your relationship intact?

Creating Your Character

Fog of Love begins with the two players choosing a scenario, which consists of several fun scenes that your characters will have to work through in their efforts to find happiness and true love. Once the board has been set, each player will create their own character by drawing different cards. Trait cards will determine different aspects of your personality—are you cocky or sensitive? Are you an extrovert? Whatever you draw, you’ll keep these to yourself throughout the game.

Players will then draw occupation cards to determine their career, which they’ll reveal at the same time. Not everyone can have the romantic job of bookstore owner—you may have to settle for a boring banker or disgruntled parking attendant. Players will then draw feature cards, which they’ll assign to the other character. These represent what drew you to your partner, whether it was their cute little glasses or intriguing scar.

Role Playing

Some of the most memorable moments from Fog of Love come from the wild things you come up with during the role-playing portion of the game. Once you’ve created your character, you’ll then be given a chance to role-play that character by introducing yourself to the other person. Feel free to be as imaginative as you can without revealing the secret traits that drive you!

Final Destiny

Fog of Love is notable in that the end of the game may result in one, both, or neither players winning the game. Players will have to draw different scene and destiny cards that will determine whether or not their relationship will make the final cut. Scene cards will represent different crazy situations the two lovebirds find themselves in during the game, while destiny cards will represent the end of game goals you’re shooting for. These goals usually involve achieving a specific level of happiness, getting your personality dimension to a certain score, and whether or not you ultimately want to stay together or break up.

Fog Of Love Expansions

Fog of Love has a number of meet-cutes and hijinks that your pair of lovers can get into throughout the course of the game, and the expansions only add to the crazy factor. With the It Will Never Last expansion, you’ll deal with 24 new feature cards that make your characters even less compatible than they already were. The Paranormal Romance adds 24 new occupation cards to be used in any story, while the Trouble With The In-Laws expansion throws a new wrench in the mix as you have to appease your partner AND your parents!

Can You Withstand The Fog Of Love?

Fog of Love is a 2-player game, usually best suited for couples. However, friends can easily find joy in the premise and in the fun role-playing aspects of the game. Fog of Love is suitable for ages 17 and up, mostly due to the adult situations that these characters find themselves in time and time again. Playing time also lasts between one to two hours, so it’s the perfect game for an anniversary or a romantic night in.

If you’re a die-hard fan of romantic comedies, you’ll love the cute scenarios and wild romance you’ll find in Fog of Love. One of the best parts of the game is the way it gives you the opportunity to role-play a completely different person than you are in real life. Even the best boyfriend in the world may find his character tasked with the secret agenda of being a ruthless heartbreaker! With Fog of Love, anything is possible.

Pucker up to the possibilities!

It’s Queen Bee vs. Queen Bee in the Game Of Hive

Chess is a time-honored classic that pits two players against each other as they strategically move pieces around a game board in order to capture the other side’s King.  The game of Hive turns chess on its head, getting rid of the game board and replacing the pawns and rooks with spiders and beetles.  Hive lets your build the game board yourself as you deftly place these hexagonally shaped bugs in an attempt to capture the powerful Queen Bee of your rival hive. 

Insects of the Hive

There are 22 total pieces in the game, so each player gets 11 pieces for their hive.  Each of the pieces contains a colorful insect carved onto a shiny black or white hexagonal tile. Unlike a traditional beehive, both hives in this game are populated with additional insects that defend the Queen Bee and attempt to trap the other player’s Queen Bee.  Each player gets one yellow Queen Bee piece, which can only move one space at a time.

Players also get two brown Spiders pieces and two purple Beetles pieces.  While Beetles can only move one space at a time, they can climb over other pieces and prevent them from moving.  The Spider, on the other hand, can move three spaces around the outside of the layout, which tends to be more useful early on in gameplay rather than later.

The three green Grasshopper pieces can jump over pieces in a straight line, while the three blue soldier ants can move as many pieces as it likes around the edge of the hive.  Each insect must be deployed to either protect the Queen Bee or surround the other player’s Queen Bee.

Capturing the Queen

Players take turns setting down their pieces and forming patterns, allowing them to play their pieces however they see fit.  The Queen Bee piece must be played within the first four turns of the game, which gives each player a limited amount of time to develop their opening strategy.  Every turn after that forces you to decide between putting another piece on the game board or moving one of your current pieces.

The publisher recommends a couple of opening strategies, although potential strategies are limitless.  One recommended strategy is to place a Spider, Bee, and Ant in a V formation, allowing the Ant to protect the Bee while the Bee is free to roam.  Another strategy is to form a V with two Spiders and a Bee, giving you the freedom to move quickly to block your opponent.  Once a Queen Bee has been surrounded on 6 sides by the other player’s pieces, the game is over.

Hive Expansions

Several expansions to Hive have been released that add new pieces with their own unique moves.  The Mosquito piece can be used as a wild card, taking on the movement of whichever piece it currently touches.  The Ladybug expansion released in 2010 and Pillbug expansion in 2013 create additional offensive and defensive opportunities that can allow you to pick up other bugs or rescue your ailing Queen Bee.    Because the original gameplay of Hive is only 20 minutes, these expansions can extend playtime and make Hive last almost as long as a chess game.

Build the Hive and Capture the Queen

If you’re looking for something a little more kid-friendly than chess, Hive is the perfect option.  It’s just simple enough that kids can enjoy it while still allowing for adults to enjoy a more complex game.  The beautiful wooden hexagonal tiles are also one of the biggest standout elements of the game, creating a visually stunning board as the game goes along.

Similarly to chess, Hive is designed for only two players.  While this is not the game for family game nights or group hangouts, it’s an excellent game for couples or lighthearted tournaments.  Hive is suitable for ages 9 and up, so two kids squaring off can have just as much fun as a parent and child can.  The more you play Hive, the more you’ll begin to uncover the numerous strategies and methods you can employ to win the game and avoid the dreaded stalemate.

 

How to Play Hive

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