Spiel ’14 preview: part one

I’m going to Spiel ’14 (Essen) and I’m really looking forward to it. All those shiny new releases. In this post and the next ones, I give you some games I think have a good chance to end up on my table.

Oh! And I’m the one that has to make the big decision. Which games to bring home? Wish me luck..



Not really an Essen release, Gen Con deserves the credit, but this one looks so cool!! And it’s the first time I might be able to play the game. Abyss is a design of Bruno Cathala and Charles Chevallier and it’s not a heavy game from the looks of it. A bit of set collection, some special powers, monster fighting and stunning underwater artwork. Bruno already had a big hit this year with Five Tribes, which I do own and have played (IT IS FABULOUS!!), so can he give me two great games this year? (or three? there’s one more of his games in this series)



I’ve pre-ordered this game, from Jay Cormier and Sen-Foong Lim, twice now already, but it also got cancelled twice, because the release date changed and changed again. So I hope to play it for the first time at Essen 2014.

There’s only one video on bgg and it looks like a nice, easygoing, two-player, tile laying game. You need to have a little spatial understanding to find and excavate temples and score points and you can also pick up and deliver some goods to score points. I’m interested. But, now I can play before I buy. Hurrah!



Czech Games Edition’s and Matúš Kotry’s new game, Alchemists, looks very interesting. However for me it’s a definite ‘play before buy’ game. First of all, I don’t really get a good feeling what the game is all about from the videos. I know that it has some worker placement and some deduction. You’re conducting some experiments, you’ll publish your findings and try to disprove the theories of other players.

That could be interesting and fun to do, but the thing I’m really interested in is the fact that you have to use your phone to play the game. You have to find out of which elements the ingredients consist. Does it add to the game or is it just a gimmick? I hope the use of electronic devices adds a new dimension to the game and maybe to board game industry without it losing its ‘social’ charm.


The Ancient World


First of all, this game, from Ryan Laukat, looks great. Again, worker placement, set collection and special abilities. You need to manage your city and try to attack the Titans that have overrun your planet. I like the fact that your workers have different skills. These different skill levels bring a bit of bidding and some action manipulation with them. I’m really looking forward to see what it’s all about. The video of the designer himself on bgg gives a very nice overview of the game.


– Next time, part two of five –

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