stateofgameslogonewThere is both nostalgia and the remembrance of our youth. There is a grey line between them both. But on this podcast we choose to embrace our youth and talk about the things in our present which remind us of our past. It’s those things that keep us forever young, and it’s one of the greatest assets of our geeky generation. Explore your youth and your future youth with us!

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stateofgameslogonewSometimes you just want to sit back and relax with the usual suspects on the podcast – and sometimes you just want to have a big ol’ party. This podcast is much more the latter with no fewer than six people all talking about games that just make you go “oh crap!” a time or three. And, amazingly, nobody talks over anyone else! Plus, what would a good party be without the law somehow getting involved? We do not disappoint in that regard.

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stateofgameslogonewThere’s just something special about Boston, and PAX East just makes it that much more special. The grand spectacle that is GenCon really pales in comparison to the crazy amount of technology and money that is pumped into the Penny Arcade Expo. However, next to all that technological excess lies the tabletop hall and a small booth dedicated to handmade prototypes – quite the contrast. We call that booth home, and in this podcast we share our adventures there and abroad in Beantown.

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stateofgameslogonewIn the last State of Games, we three podcasters talked about all sorts of things from one end of boardgaming to another. During that intelligent melee TC brought up some points on emergent gameplay, while Darrell and I were left scratching our heads wondering what the heck he was talking about. Since that part fostered generous discussion amongst you, dear listeners, we decided to dig a little deeper. And, so, here we are. Enjoy!

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stateofgameslogonewSometimes we have moments of brilliance on The State of Games. We come up with timely, intelligent points of debate and spend precious moments wringing every bit of knowledge we can muster in an effort to bring something new to the hobby and to our listeners. I’m here to tell you, this podcast isn’t one of those moments. But if you like three guys being random and silly, have we got a show for you.

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This Spring, Dice Hate Me Games will be launching a Kickstarter featuring six 54-card games as part of the Rabbit line of titles. Of these six games, four were chosen as winners of the Dice Hate Me 54-Card Challenge that was put forth in November.

Today on Dice Hate Me, we’re taking a closer look at the design inspirations behind the games in the second three-pack of “Globetrotters”: Graham Russell’s The Fittest, J. Alex Kevern’s Easy Breezy Travel Agency, and Dan Keltner & Seth Jaffee’s Isle of Trains. Look for the Kickstarter for these games and the first Rabbit 3-pack right now!

The Fittest by Graham Russell

TheFittestCoverPROMOAs a quick summary, in your own words, what is your game all about?

Graham: The Fittest is a game about reality competition shows, but without all that pesky strenuous physical activity or constantly-rolling cameras. It focuses on the reasons I think most people like reality TV: the tense negotiation, fragile alliances and reactions to situations for which contestants couldn’t possibly be prepared. Through the episodes of the game, players are presented with challenges that let them win prizes. To complete challenges, though, they’re going to have to convince other players to help, and since that means splitting the rewards, there’s always the temptation to build the smallest team possible and hope for the best.

What inspired you to come up with this design?

You know, this has been a while in the making, though not in any form you’d recognize if you play the game today. I worked with (Level 99 Games‘) Brad Talton on some projects in college, and while our design sensibilities often clash on a fundamental level, the collaboration really led to some interesting ideas. We had some games that were fun to play (if not particularly balanced, refined or at all able to write into coherent rules), but there was one dynamic that I thought had some merit and decided to keep working on over the next few years. At times, the game was about IT project management, an American Gladiators-like competition and even building an impressive high school transcript, but these were all frames for ideas that just weren’t clicking. So it sat for a while and I moved on to other things.

It was dormant for about two years when you announced the 54-Card Challenge, and then things just kind of clicked in my head. The mechanics were cleaned up in an elegant way by restricting it to a game of that size, and when it was boiled down to its best elements, this theme just made sense and I ran with it.

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Hello, dear readers! It’s that time of the year again – time to recap some adventures at one of my favorite “local” gaming conventions, PrezCon in Charlottesville, Virginia. The structure of the convention is similar to that of the World Boardgaming Championships, with week-long gaming competitions for everything from Ticket to Ride to Hammer of the Scots. I arrived at the convention a bit later than previous years but with still enough time to get in some quality gaming and meet up with friends old and new. And, so, I prevent a brief pictorial overview of the festivities – enjoy, and consider coming out next year to what we’re fast coming to call the “annual Dice Hate Me summit!”

vivajava

TC Petty III and Darrell Louder arrived at the con a full day before the rest of us and constantly taunted us with pics of all the fun they were having without us. One of the first sights that TC encountered when he stepped through the door was a group playing VivaJava – which is always a very cool thing to behold. (Photo by TC Petty III)

steampark

The taunts – too numerous to post in this article – continued until it reached it’s crescendo: Darrell and TC playing Steam Park, the game that has alluded my grasp since its release earlier this year. Some day, Steam Park… some day. (Photo by TC Petty III)

euphoria1

We arrived late Friday night and jumped right into gaming with our first selection, Euphoria, by Stonemaier Games. It was to be my first play of the dystopian dynamo, and I was joined by TC Petty III, Paul Owen, Dan Patriss, Darrell Louder and Stephanie Straw. As you can see from the picture, there is lots of beer and a fair amount of confusion and commotion in the faux utopian future.

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