GNOIF: GNOIF Is Working For A Living


GNOIF #28 recap — GNOIF:  GNOIF Is Working For A Living (Industry/ Worker Placement themes)

Games That Got Played:  Biotix, Circus Flohcati, Terraforming Mars.

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  We really only offered the three games. Everyone was looking forward to Terraforming Mars, so that’s what we played.

The small crowd  had fun late late late into the night. I think I wound up making finger sandwiches for the group sometime around 11pm.

In Terraforming Mars you play as a corporation that is working to make the conditions on Mars habitable for humans. Players receive cards each turn that represent actions, events, or building projects. You can do almost anything from bombarding Mars with asteroids, to building domed or underground cities, to encouraging forests or microbes or predators or pets. It seems even on Mars, people like their pets.

I like it for a lot of reasons — It scales well to different numbers of players. There are interesting decisions to make but not so many that the game bogs down. The artwork is good. The cards carry through on the theme extremely well. It’s a very highly regarded game on BoardGameGeek, and it’s easy to see why.

Thanks to everyone who played!



GNOIF #26 recap — GNOIF:  GNOIF Gets Lucky (Wealth/Luck/Asian Themes (Chinese New Year))

Games That Got Played:  Code Names (Deep Under Cover), The Dragon & Flagon, Hanabi, Incan Gold, King of Tokyo, Lost Cities Board Game, Seven Dragons, Ticket to Ride Asia, Ticket to Ride Europe.

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  Avalon – Resistance, Five Tribes, Get Dr. Lucky, Mottainai, Tiny Epic Kingdoms.

The crowd showed up early and stayed late. Altogether it was more than ten hours of gaming. We played a bunch of looong games with a few short games as spacers in between.

An early evening game was The Dragon & Flagon. Think D&D bar fight. People were throwing mugs, chairs, and lightning at each other. Generally silly and definitely fun.

I really enjoy King Of Tokyo. To requote from the GNOIF #24 Recap:  “I enjoy it quite a bit. Players play as big, stompy, city-wrecking monsters, and the object is to dominate Tokyo and beat up everyone else — think Gozilla vs Mothra vs Kong. It’s fast and violent, and there’s an element of “chicken” to it. Good fun.”

It’s also possible to “upgrade” your monster. I went with Poison Quills, which in the right circumstance allows for more damage dealing. My opponent on my left purchased an “Extra Head”, which she used to roll an extra die and deal out terrible carnage. She won.

Later in the evening the gaming broke into two groups — one group focused on Ticket to Ride and the other on Code Names. That’s the nice thing about offering a range of game lengths and complexities — there was something for everyone.

Thanks to those who played!


GNOIF: GNOIF’s Day Of Infamy


GNOIF #25 recap — GNOIF:  GNOIF’s Day Of Infamy (War/Water themes. (Pearl Harbor))

Games That Got Played:  Amerigo, Avalon – Resistance, Hanabi, Star Realms.

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  Bang!, Batt’l Kha’os, Castle Panic, Pirate Fluxx, Forbidden Island, Nuclear War, Pirate’s Cove, Small World, Tiny Epic Kingdoms, Ultimate Werewolf.

Not many games got played, because GNOIF was taking place at the same time as:









I could do this all day!


GNOIF: GNOIF Has The Power

by A.J. Coltrane

GNOIF #19 Recap — GNOIF: GNOIF Has The Power (Games about power and control. Political power. Military power. Electrical-type power.) This recap is well overdue, the game night was actually on the 12th of September. Life gets in the way sometimes.

Games That Got Played:  Ascension, Avalon – Resistance, Bang!, Fluxx – Martian, Forbidden Desert

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  Agricola, Black Rock City, Carcassonne, Fjords, Forbidden Island, Pandemic, Power Grid, Rocketville, Small World, Tiny Epic Kingdoms

A medium sized-crowd decided that they wanted to play, and replay a select few games. I played the then new-to-us Ascension with four players. With just 2 people it’s fairly deterministic, and it feels like maybe it’s too easy to plan ahead. I think it’s probably a better game with 3 or 4 people. It was created by the same designers responsible for Star Realms. To my mind Star Realms works best with two players, though really I think it’s just the better game overall.

Most of the other games we played can occupy a lot of players. Fluxx, Avalon – Resistance, and Bang! will all entertain a crowd, and that’s sort of how the evening went — multiple plays of “big” games.

As always, thanks to everyone who played!


by A.J. Coltrane

GNOIF #18 Recap — GNOIF: In The Heat Of GNOIF (Popular games and Games Of The Year)

Games That Got Played:  Dominion, Fluxx, Forbidden Island, Guillotine, Lost Cities, Rocketville, Seven Wonders

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  Agricola, Citadels, Forbidden Desert, Gardens of Alhambra, Power Grid

A hot evening meant that nobody felt like grinding too hard — I know at least I didn’t. The smallish crowd broke out into large games of Guillotine, Dominion, Fluxx, and Seven Wonders — relatively lightweight games that we’d mostly all played before.

We had fun with Fluxx, and the sheer amount of bloodshed in the 2nd game of Guillotine was satisfying in a morbid kind of way. (The first game of Guillotine was too short to result in a decent body count.)

As always, thanks to everyone who played!

GNOIF: The Leaning Tower Of GNOIF

by A.J. Coltrane

GNOIF #17 Recap — The Leaning Tower Of GNOIF (Castles, Towers, and Construction themes.)

Games That Got Played:  Avalon – Resistance, Batt’l Kha’os, Cards Against Humanity, Carcassonne, Dominion, Gardens of Alhambra, Guillotine, Jamaica, Seven Wonders

Games That Didn’t Get Played:  Agricola, Castle Panic, Citadels, Infernal Contraption, King of the Elves, Medina, Power Grid

Record-tying and punctual attendance meant that we had four tables going most of the night. I had to get a photo of this epic game of Seven Wonders:

042415 seven wonders

Seven Wonders saw everyone trying different strategies, but at the end only 7 points separated first place from last place.

Because of the success of Bang! we’ve purchased Ultimate Werewolf, which was played at the last GNOIF, and Avalon – Resistance, which was played at this GNOIF. They’re all excellent party games because they’re relatively quick, engage a lot of players, and are very interactive.

Fortunately we’ve hosted enough game nights that people are fairly familiar with many of the games. 20 cats is too many to herd.

Thanks to everyone who played!

GNOIF: New GNOIF On The Block

by A.J. Coltrane

GNOIF #16 Recap — New GNOIF On The Block (Games that have only been played a few times at GNOIF.)

Games That Got Played —  Castle Panic, Dead Fellas, Fluxx, Forbidden Desert, Get Dr. Lucky, Run For Your Life Candyman, Star Realms, Ultimate Werewolf, We Didn’t Playtest This At All.

Games That Didn’t Get Played — Batt’l Kha’os, Carcassonne, Medina, Pirates Cove, Power Grid, Seven Wonders, Small World.

GNOIF turned sweet sixteen, and we celebrated by offering games that hadn’t been seen much in past events. Not too surprisingly, everyone gravitated to stuff that at least a few people knew how to play… and almost all the games played could be categorized as “light”. It seems starting from scratch by reading a big rulebook and then teaching is too slow when there are games that need little introduction. (I started to type “introducation”. That word doesn’t exist, but I think it should. It’s perfect for what I’m trying to describe.)

Which sort of makes it funny that the big hit of the evening was new to everyone. Ultimate Werewolf. One person went into the other room, read the (tiny) rulebook, then taught it to the group of ten players. It has some similarities to Resistance or Mafia, which helped the learning curve.

The concept is that some of the players are Werewolves, some are Villagers, and some are “special” roles such as “Seer”, the “Hunter”, or “The Village Idiot”. Each player’s role is a secret. The Werewolves try to eat the Villagers, and the Villagers try not to get eaten… there’s more to it than that, but that’s the gist of it. Suitable for 5 to 30 players, and best at 10-15 players, it made a good substitute for some of the other “late in the evening” games we’ve been playing, such as Bang! or The Worst Card Game Ever. It was loud, boisterous, and not too heavy on the thinking.

Bonus boy cat pic:

150124 boy cat

He’s long. That’s a dog bed.