Codenames and Splendor – Review for Bloggers Board Game

Codenames Pictures is based from the award-winning original game of the same name and one we enjoyed reviewing and playing earlier in the year. Distributed by Asmodee and suitable for 2-8 players aged 10+ RRP £16.99.

Codenames is a quick game to set up simply choose your team if playing with four or more players. Decide who will be the spymaster for each team. Then the other players become agents for their chosen colour. A key card is chosen at random and the picture cards are shuffled and laid out in a grid format.

The gameplay starts with the team colour indicated on the chosen key card and the spymaster for the team has to give clues that will lead to his teammates to guessing the correct picture card. If they can give clues that lead to more than one card being covered with their correct agent card then it is time to party!

Gameplay continues between the teams with each correct guess, and ends with incorrect guesses, or uncovering a bystander. When the assassin is uncovered that team loose. Spymasters need to be cleaver to lead the team to success by completing all their coloured agents cards and not uncovering the assassin.

There are alternative play games for 2 or 3 players and we have enjoyed the 3 player variation of Codenames. We discovered that the Picture version is a little easier in some ways than the word version. But don’t be fooled as it still takes some thought and quite a bit of discussion! Perfect entertainment for a family get-together.

Splendor is an Asmodee classic game based on trading precious stones to create jewellery that will impress to win. For 2-4 players aged 10+ RRP £25.99.

Splendor game set-up is easy, simply lay out one row of each of the three level development cards. Sort the required number of tokens for the number of players and lay out in a grid. The Nobel cards are added to the top of the rows and play can start.

There are four different moves each player can choose to make. They can take 3 different coloured jem tokens. They can take two of the same colour (provided there are 4 or more left on the pile) You can choose a development card to keep in your hand. Or finally you can choose to purchase a development card.

The aim of Splendor is to add up points from purchasing development cards and maybe even earn a visit from one of the nobles. Each development card has a different value and the harder cards from the grid earn more points. These are the basic rules, and we found them easy to pick up. The winner is the first player to have development cards totalling 15.

Once we started to play we soon discovered that you need to have a plan. The boy and I also worked out that we were trying to gain a visit from the same noble. Splendor is a nice easy fun game that requires some strategy and thought. A cross between a card game and a matching game, it turns out the boy is pretty good at it!

We enjoyed Splendor and as it doesn’t take long to play one game it is great as a quick after school game. I love the quality of the counters and cards they feel like they will last for a long time and many Splendorous years to come.

Disclaimer we were sent these games as part of the Bloggers Board Game club and have not been paid for this post. The opinions remain our own.

Splendor and Codename pictures are available to buy from your favourite high street shops, online or via my affiliate links below.

Dixit – Review with Bloggers Board Games Club

Dixit is one of Asmodee’s classic games for 2018, for 3 – 6 players aged 8+ RRP £29.99

Dixit is a word game, or maybe better described as a storytelling game. With many awards already to its name I was keen to see what the Dragon family made of it. Dixit can have from 3 – 6 players which is great for our small family. The rules and play are slightly adjusted for 3 players. To set up you choose your coloured rabbit marker and place on the 0 on the board. Next the 84 image cards are shuffled and dealt. With 7 cards to each player in a 3 player game. The remaining cards are set aside in a pile.

The storyteller is then chosen from the first person to describe a card from their hand out loud. This person then looks at their cards and without showing the others makes up a sentence, word or noise to describe the chosen card. The other players then look at their pictured Dixit cards and decide which they think would best match the storytellers card. In a 3 player game each player chooses 2 cards except the storyteller so 5 are shuffled and placed face up on the table.

The next stage of Dixit is to use your numbered tokens to choose the number of the card you think belongs to the storyteller. Points are awarded to those that can guess correctly. There are 3 points for the player and storyteller if they guess correctly. one point for a player where they have a vote on their picture card. Two points to each player if know one guesses the storytellers card. Points totalled the rabbit counter is moved along the board.

The game of Dixit ends when the cards run out and the player with the highest score is declared the winner. The trick to this game is not to be to obvious with your description that everyone guesses. While being to hidden with your meaning will result in no points for you. Dixit may look easy enough but as we found is a game which needs balance.

We like games that are played easily with three players and Dixit hasn’t disappointed. The rules were easy to understand and after a couple of goes the scoring became second nature. I can see why Dixit has already won awards as it seems so simple but is a great game for an active imagination. Especially good for those who are good with words like the boy who found the descriptions second nature.

I love the styling of Dixit and the way it stores in the box. This is a great quality game and one I think we will enjoy trying out with family when we next get together. You can buy Dixit from toy stores as well as online via my Amazon link below.

 

Disclaimer: we have been sent this game as part of the Bloggers Board Game Club with Asmodee Games and have not been paid for this review. #BoardGameClub

Pandemic – Review for Bloggers Board Game Club

Pandemic is a cooperative game from Asmodee for 2 -4 players aged 8+ RRP £29.99.

Can you save Humanity?

This is the question Pandemic asks. Pandemic is a cooperative play game so there will never be just one winner, but as we found out this doesn’t make it less challenging. In order to save the world from the deadly diseases you will need to work with your individual skills to cure the 4 diseases before they breakout takes over.

I have come to expect well made and packaged games from Asmodee, and Pandemic doesn’t disappoint. The playing pieces have a lovely weight and feel and each part comes with its own zip lock bag so there is very little additional plastic packaging. The box and board a are a very good long-lasting card. The player cards also have a good long-lasting feel.

Game set up is fairly straight forward and is set out well in the instructions. Cards are dealt in relation to the number of players, and roles are also chosen at random. We have enjoyed playing this game as after our first try an average game lasts about 3/4 of an hour. The rules were also pretty easy to pick up and we only missed one which helped greatly on subsequent games.

Play follows three parts with the first being 4 actions, moving your and other players pieces around the Pandemic board. This can be setting up research stations of helping fellow players to cure the diseases before they spread too far. Players draw more cards and then infect cities. Play continues until you either cure-all four diseases, or you run out of players cards.

We discovered that we could save the world on our first attempt of playing the game, and then have failed on our last two pandemic games. It turn out I think it was beginners luck. Pandemic has been a refreshing change to the games we usually play which can be very competitive. It is great for encouraging conversation and co-operation. It is also not as disturbing as the name mas suggest.

Pandemic has won many awards and will also be featuring in the Asmodee Classic games promotion for 2018. This classic version of the game is a great start, and if you enjoy it then there are other variants of the game. Pandemic Legacy looks like a great with slightly different game play as well as various expansion packs.

Pandemic is available now from your local games store, online and via my Amazon affiliate link below.

Disclaimer: we have been sent this game as part of the Bloggers Board Game Club with Asmodee Games and have not been paid for this review. #BoardGameClub