spielbox April 2011

spielbox 2/2011 cover My final spielbox subscription issue arrived today. The envelope was suspiciously hard for a magazine and upon opening it I found an A4 cardboard within the issue, with 222 small pieces! If this was a game expansion, the base game wasn't named on the cardboard; and the spielbox centrefold games never come with game material. My curiosity piqued, I turned to the centre of the magazine and surprise: the cardboard pieces are for a railway game by Martin Wallace taking place in the southwest of Britain! But why so many extra cardboard pieces? The news get even better on the penultimate page of the magazine: there will be three further Wallace games in spielbox! Now that my subscription ended (read here why I cancelled it) they start inserting games from one of my favourite designers... Just from reading the rules, it's a pretty light game compared to Wallace's boxed railway games (as to be expected), but it seems to have enough challenges to give it a try.

Moving on, I was of course very happy to see a positive review and high scores (one 7, six 8s and three 9s) for the Portuguese history themed Navegador, a game Mac Gerdts first presented at LeiriaCon, Portugal's largest boardgame meeting.

Another of this issue's delights is a small advert for the appropriately-named Alea Apartments in a Greek island, where holiday makers can use the owner's boardgame collection.

The issue's contents is as follows, with underlined games getting high scoring reviews.

  • News:
    • the As d'Or goes to Skulls & Roses, while 7 Wonders receives a special award
    • the 23rd Hippodice contest and its strong winner, Afrika 1830, a game about the ruthless colonial politics and exploitation in Africa
  • Long reviews: Settlers of Catan–The quick card game, 1655–Habemus PapamBlack FridayFirenze, Grand Cru, NavegadorThe Great Fire of London, Skull & Roses, Alien Frontiers, Key Market
  • Short reviews: Water Lily, Take it or leave it, High FiveBusstop: the Boardgame, Alex & Co
  • Children’s gamesFlucht vor dem T-Rextiptoi–Die Englisch DetektiveWas ist das?, Domory, Der Waldspaziergang
  • Profiles:
    • interview of Ulrich Blum, author of Grand Cru
    • interview of the spokesman of the Spiel des Jahres jury on the creation of their new award "Connoisseur Game of the Year"
  • Reports:
    • 14 pages about the board and card games at Nuremberg's Toy Fair, with comments on expansions and remakes
    • 15th anniversary of the German edition of Wizard
  • Edition spielbox 92: Great Western, a railway game by Martin Wallace for 2-4 players
  • HistoryMeltdown, a not very good game about management of nuclear reactors
  • Books: "Five cows walking on a road...", a book for training creativity by Joachim Zischke, author of expensive topological games
  • Playing better: player aids for Black Friday and Troyes

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