Tag Archives: Worker Placement

Darkrock Ventures (Kickstarter Preview)




Darkrock Ventures is a medium-weight dice-based worker placement game where each player controls a mining company hoping to strike it rich on a deep space asteroid. But difficult mining is not the only challenge that the miners face. Their is the ever present threat of alien invasion.

This video will give you a solid understanding of this game and help you decide whether it’s worth your kickstarter backing!


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Sons Of Anarchy: Men Of Mayhem – Calaveras Club Expansion




During Sons Of Anarchy’s seven season run the Calaveras club appeared to be a dangerous yet very unreliable ally of the Mayans who often struck out and did things their own way. Their most notable exploits include ripping up Half-Sack’s wake with a drive-by and stealing Juice’s cut, a grievance of extreme proportion. I often saw them as a loose cannon that couldn’t be trusted, lightning bottled and ready to be unleashed on a helpless crowd. In this regard they do not disappoint with their implementation in Gale Force Nine’s massively underrated board game implementation of this popular drama.

Sons Of Anarchy: Men Of Mayhem is primarily a worker placement game with heaps of conflict and special powers. Throwing in more variety in the faction pool is like adding more chocolate to your hot fudge Sunday or more Glocks to your armory – it’s never too much or too many. The Calaveras follow in the footsteps of the Grim Bastards, offering a slick new ability that carefully manipulates the social tension of the game, supplementing the drama and flair. This new gang may spend an order token in a Throw Down to keep other motorcycle clubs from calling in backup. Yes, pick your grill up off the floor as these fools are dangerous.



The smug Calaveras crew.


Immediately, they step in to challenge the One-Niners as one of the strongest brute force clubs in the game. If they really want to beat the hell out of you and leave your cut bloody on the concrete they will. The main problem they face is efficiently managing their orders, particularly when engaged in multiple scraps as they need to prioritize which they really care about and which they can afford to man up and take the beating. The best part about this effect is that it has a noticeable shift in how the table engages them, just like the Grim Bastards, and breeds social maneuvering and threatening jabberwocky. You will feel they are perhaps too strong at first, but experience and multiple engagements will make you realize they can be overcome and countered like every other MC at the table.

The first time I played as the Calaveras the entire group was afraid to engage, tip-toeing around in hushed silence like we were mourning a relative. I had my way with the women and wares of Charming while we rode like kings down the molten highway with huge cheesy grins and bloody victim pinatas dragging behind like a broken Hector. Then some ballsy jockey stepped up to the plate and challenged me at the smut emporium, forcing me to burn multiple orders to call in for backup and then stop him from doing the same. This clever biker must have gone back to school and got his GED because this was a feint, causing me to mismanage my organization as he followed up the hollow brawl with his real check-mate, cutting me off at the knees and leaving me crawling in the dirt. That’s just how this game rolls and why the box comes with a stack of waivers.




Getting back to a stale reality where my only engagement in extreme violence is via plastic toy soldiers, this expansion packs the same content list as the Grim Bastards club extension. You get a new set of miniatures, more fat stacks of cash and orders, a custom die, and a club player board and screen. There’s a small rules sheet with details for 5-6 player games and the two black market reference cards for all player numbers. I very much enjoy SOA with five players due to the increased room for bargaining and deal making but the game can extend into the 2.5-3 hour range. With six the momentum continues with grand sweeping negotiation, monumental backstabs, and cash raining through the air like a high class strip joint. Grab a helmet and a six pack though because you’ll be at the table for a long time. The game packs enough enjoyment, tension and impactful decision making to fill out this time period with meaningful interaction, but most will likely want to avoid this commitment and keep the game at a comfortable 60-90 minutes.

This is another great addition to the Gale Force Nine library and one I’m ecstatic to have in my collection. Variety keeps the experience fresh and allows for new broaches of social misconduct which keeps us young and on our toes. When the Calaveras hit the table you’ll have to adjust and modify your strategy or you’ll find your cronies strapped to their steel stallions and used for target practice.

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Caverna Review – Starlit Citadel Reviews Season 3


Following along the same lines as its predecessor (Agricola), Caverna: The Cave Farmers is a worker-placement game at heart, with a focus on farming. In the game, you are the bearded leader of a small dwarf family that lives in a little cave in the mountains. You begin the game with a farmer and his spouse, and each member of the farming family represents an action that the player can take each turn. Together, you cultivate the forest in front of your cave and dig deeper into the mountain. You furnish the caves as dwellings for your offspring as well as working spaces for small enterprises.

It’s up to you how much ore you want to mine. You will need it to forge weapons that allow you to go on expeditions to gain bonus items and actions. While digging through the mountain, you may come across water sources and find ore and ruby mines that help you increase your wealth. Right in front of your cave, you can increase your wealth even further with agriculture: You can cut down the forest to sow fields and fence in pastures to hold your animals. You can also expand your family while running your ever-growing farm. In the end, the player with the most efficiently developed home board wins.

You can also play the solo variant of this game to familiarize yourself with the 48 different furnishing tiles for your cave.

Caverna: The Cave Farmers, which has a playing time of roughly 30 minutes per player, is a complete redesign of Agricola that substitutes the card decks from the former game with a set of buildings while adding the ability to purchase weapons and send your farmers on quests to gain further resources. Designer Uwe Rosenberg says that the game includes parts of Agricola, but also has new ideas, especially the cave part of your game board, where you can build mines and search for rubies. The game also includes two new animals: dogs and donkeys.

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Castaways Review


You’ve been shipwrecked on a deserted isle. Do you have the wits to survive until a rescue ship arrives? To make it, you’ll need to build a camp and explore the interior to reach the summit. From there, you will scan the horizon for sign of a nearby ship. Only then will you be able to make a signal and get rescued! If you are rescued, your tale will be told around the world — but only if you have the best tale to tell! Of course, if you are not rescued, no one will hear your story…

Castaways is a competitive collaboration game about four castaways who are stranded on a small island. They must collaborate to improve their shelter, gather food to eat and wood to keep the campfire burning, and figure out how to advance to the interior of the island, as only from the vantage point of the highest spot on the island will they have a view of the vast ocean – and even more importantly, a view of the ship on the horizon that promises rescue! The players must manage their time in order to deliver a signal to this passing vessel – but even if they’re all rescued, in the end only one player will win, that being the one who writes the best story at the end of the game, the one who lives and retells the greatest adventure from all the survivors, the one who has collected the most story points.

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Asking for Trobils Review

Asking for Troblils

Asking for Trobils is a worker-placement boardgame where the player is trying their best to rid the star system of Trobils (space pests). You play a Trobil Hunter – flinging the space vermin into the star, and dealing with unsavory folk just to get the job done.

Players start with one ship, placing it at various locations to gather resources that will allow you to trap Trobils. But just one ship may not be enough, so you can fly through a wormhole to create two or even three ships to help you gather resources.

You can make connections to gain more resources or hang around the local Riffraff. Send pirates, bounty hunters, or gangsters out to make areas rougher for your opponents, or enhance locations for everyone by sending out traders and courtesans.

For every Trobil card you capture, you gain victory points. The player with the most points at the end wins

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