Men on Board

Men on Board is a board gaming podcast where each episode will focus on a particular category within the hobby. The categories will be anything from a mechanic, to a theme, to a particular designer or publisher. Each episode will usually focus on two games from the category and contain a discussion of each as well as some compare and contrasting between them. Also, every episode will include a discussion that pulls back and looks at a more broad view about the board gaming hobby.

Episode 32: Cooperation

This episode ended up being a little bit longer because we were having a lot of fun in our Broader View, so hopefully you enjoy the extra content! The category this week is cooperative games, and both of our cooperative games that we’re talking about have an island theme: Robinson Crusoe and Spirit Island. In our Broader View, we continue with the island theme and we discuss what three games (or as Jameson insists three games and a deck of cards) would we bring to a desert island. We also all cheat and sneak in an honorable mention.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:53] - Cooperative Games
[00:01:10] - Robinson Crusoe
[00:18:49] - Spirit Island
[00:36:17] - Comparison
[00:45:29] - Other Cooperative Games
[00:47:51] - Broader View


Aaron: Forbidden Sky
Josh: Sentinels of the Multiverse
Jameson: Battlestar Galactica
Mat: Big Book of Madness

Aaron’s Desert Island Games:

1) Arcardia Quest
2) Twilight Imperium Third Edition
3) Sentinels of the Multiverse
Honorable Mention: Cerebria

Josh’s Desert Island Games:

1) Scythe
2) Lost Cities
3) Werewolf
Honorable Mention: Ticket to Ride

Jameson’s Desert Island Games:

1) Arcardia Quest
2) Battlestar Galactica
3) Mysterium
Honorable Mention: Spirit Island

Mat’s Desert Island Games:

1) Captain Sonar
2) Schotten Totten
3) Werewolf
Honorable Mention: Ticket to Ride Europe

Episode 31: Next Move

In this episode we’re talking about Next Move Games, which is an imprint from the publisher Plan B Games. We’re talking about both of the games that Next Move has published to date: Azul and Reef. In our Broader View, we talk about what we consider filler games and how we feel about them.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:01:05] - Next Move Games
[00:01:29] - Azul
[00:16:27] - Reef
[00:31:39] - Comparison
[00:40:36] - Other Tile Laying Games
[00:43:31] - Broader View

Episode 30: Social Deduction

In this shorter than average episode, we’re going back to Social Deduction games, but this time we’re focusing on games that play in a short amount of time. Specifically, we’re talking about One Night Ultimate Werewolf and Crossfire. In our Broader View, we talk about playing games at parties, and we end up spending way too much time talking about our frustrations with Cards Against Humanity.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:01:40] - Social Deduction
[00:02:27] - One Night Ultimate Werewolf
[00:15:56] - Crossfire
[00:27:04] - Comparison
[00:33:38] - Other (Short) Social Deduction Games
[00:36:48] - Broader View

Episode 29: Shakespeare

Shakespeare is the category this week as we discuss the games Histrio and Shakespeare. In our Broader View, we talk about settings in board games, and the conversation goes into some places that we weren’t expecting and get a little bit real.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:47] - Shakespeare (Category)
[00:01:25] - Histrio
[00:13:32] - Shakespeare (Game)
[00:34:41] - Comparison
[00:43:37] - Other Games about Putting on Shows
[00:46:21] - Broader View

Episode 28: Escape Rooms

This week we’re looking at two series of games that simulate the feeling of an escape room: the Unlock series and the Exit series. Because of the nature of these games, we were very careful to avoid spoilers, and only lightly touched on a few topics that may be considered slight spoilers, so I have noted those times in the show notes below, along with what is talked about in general. In our Broader View, we talk about how to make your game group more inclusive with a particular focus on inclusivity for gay men.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:33] - Escape Rooms
[00:02:38] - Unlock Series
[00:13:53] - SPOILER: Vague references to mechanics in Squeek & Sausage and The Formula
[00:16:42] - SPOILER: Discussions about the set up of The Island of Doctor Goorse and vague references to frustrations with the game
[00:21:26] - Exit Series
[00:23:57] - SPOILER: Commentary about the design of the wheel in Pharaoh’s Tomb and Sunken Treasure
[00:33:21] - SPOILER: Slight spoiler about the overall nature of Dead Man on the Orient Express
[00:33:56] - Comparison
[00:39:52] - Other Games that feel like Escape Rooms
[00:43:52] - Broader View

Episode 27: Hidden Movement

Today we’re celebrating our one year anniversary, and because this episode is coming out a day late, it is actually coming out on our one year anniversary! So in honor of making it a full year, we’re going back to our very first category and revisiting hidden movement with Specter Ops and Nuns on the Run. In our Broader View, we reflect on the last year of recording this podcast. Thank you to everyone that has been on this journey with us!

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:01:07] - Hidden Movement
[00:02:12] - Specter Ops
[00:20:01] - Nuns on the Run
[00:31:25] - Comparison
[00:37:11] - Other Hidden Movement Games
[00:41:40] - Broader View

Episode 26: Twilight Imperium

This episode went longer than we try to keep our episodes, but since we're talking about Twilight Imperium that seemed appropriate.  Specifically, we're talking about Twilight Imperium Third Edition and Twilight Imperium Fourth Edition.  Also, because Josh has never played Twilight Imperium, we brought in our friend (Other) Matt to fill in our fourth chair.  In our Broader View, we talk about playing games that are an all day event.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:03:25] - Twilight Imperium
[00:06:09] - Twilight Imperium Third Edition
[00:31:46] - Twilight Imperium Fourth Edition
[00:34:14] - Comparison
[00:56:49] - Other Epic Games
[00:59:52] - Broader View

Episode 25: App Integration

Today we're discussing board games that are in some degree hybrids of board games and video games.  These are games that require smartphone apps in order to be played, and the two games that we're featuring are Stop Thief! and Mansions of Madness Second Edition.  Then, in our Broader View, we're going to flip the script and talk about board games that have been made into apps and how we feel about that.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:43] - App Integration
[00:01:19] - Stop Thief!
[00:16:26] - Mansions of Madness Second Edition
[00:40:10] - Comparison
[00:42:56] - Other Games with App Integration
[00:46:43] - Broader View

Episode 24: Deckbuilding +

In part two of our two part "plus" series, we're looking at deckbuilding games that both have some mechanics that go a little bit beyond the typical deckbuilding game.  Specifically, we're talking about Clank!: A Deck-Building Adventure and The Quest for El Dorado.  In our Broader View, we go on a series of tangents about sleeving, shuffling, and storing cards, which we're calling card maintenence.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:01:07] - Deckbuilding Games with a Little Bit Extra
[00:02:18] - Clank!: A Deck-Building Adventure
[00:19:16] - The Quest for El Dorado
[00:32:20] - Comparison
[00:38:35] - Other Deckbuilding Games
[00:42:43] - Broader View

Episode 23: Deduction +

In this episode's category, we're looking at two deduction games that have a little bit more going on than just straightforward deduction: Mystery Express and Alchemists.  In our Broader View, we talk about Aaron's pet peeve of Deduction and Mystery being used as synonyms.  Also in this episode, we're putting the call out for feedback as we near our one year anniversary of podcasting and look forward to the future.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:01:02] - Deduction Games with Something More
[00:02:17] - Mystery Express
[00:18:48] - Alchemists
[00:34:17] - Comparison
[00:38:26] - Other Deduction Games
[00:43:31] - Broader View
[00:54:20] - Looking Forward and a Request for Assistance

Episode 22: Queen Games

Today we're taking a look at a publisher that typically makes family friendly games that can be scaled up in complexity with expansion content: Queen Games.  Specifically, we're talking about Alhambra and Fresco.  In part two of our two part Broader View conversation about expansions, we discuss our thoughts about when we integrate expansions.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:34] - Queen Games
[00:02:19] - Alhambra
[00:15:20] - Fresco
[00:28:25] - Comparison
[00:34:39] - Other Games from Queen Games (and a game with a Queen)
[00:38:11] - Broader View

Episode 21: Prolific Expansions

In this episode, we're looking at games with a lot of available expansion content: Carcassonne and Dominion.  In our Broader View, we have a discussion about what we consider before purchasing an expansion for a game.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:43] - Prolific Expansions
[00:01:20] - Carcassonne
[00:15:33] - Dominion
[00:30:02] - Comparison
[00:38:08] - Other Games with a Prolific Number of Expansions
[00:41:19] - Broader View

Board Game Kiki Episode 1: Origins 2018

In our first Board Game Kiki, we're talking about everything that we did and played at Origins Game Fair 2018!  These Kiki episodes are going to be sporadic and occur only when we have something that we want to talk about that doesn't fit into our normal format.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:02:50] - Origins 2018
[00:07:08] - Queen Games
[00:07:23] - Luxor
[00:09:32] - Alhambra
[00:10:39] - Franchise & Other Upcoming Queen Games
[00:12:12] - Bezier Games
[00:12:31] - One Week Ultimate Werewolf
[00:13:28] - Werewolf Legacy
[00:16:13] - Reef
[00:18:41] - The Mind
[00:20:25] - Nyctophobia
[00:22:08] - Decrypto
[00:23:24] - Nightfalls
[00:26:55] - Ticket to Ride New York
[00:28:59] - Seven Wonders Armada
[00:32:15] - Dragon Castle
[00:33:27] - 1754
[00:35:52] - Tudors
[00:38:05] - Ladies & Gentlemen
[00:38:51] - An Outsider's Perspective from our Friend Topher
[00:42:30] - Thank You

Episode 20: Alexander Pfister

Today we're looking at two games designed by Alexander Pfister: Mombasa and Great Western Trail.  In our Broader View, we talk about game designer signatures.  Shorter show notes courtesy of getting home very late after Origins 2018!

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:51] - Alexander Pfister
[00:01:30] - Mombasa
[00:17:01] - Great Western Trail
[00:32:38] - Comparison
[00:38:37] - Other Games Like These In Some Way
[00:42:35] - Broader View

Episode 19: Set Collection

This week we're looking at set collection with Splendor and Century: Golem Edition (which is mechanically identical to Century Spice Road, but Aaron just likes animating golems more than trading spices).  In our Broader View, we discuss how component quality can enhance or detract from our enjoyment of a game.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:56] - Set Collection
[00:01:23] - Splendor
[00:16:24] - Century: Golem Edition
[00:31:13] - Comparison
[00:38:41] - Other Set Collection Games
[00:41:44] - Broader View

Episode 18: Social Deduction

After starting off with some bad news last episode and promising the same for this week, we were pleasantly surprised to see that we did not have the same issue in this recording!  This week, we're talking about the social deduction games Two Rooms and a Boom and The Resistance.  In our Broader View, we talk about deception in games and it gets a little bit real.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:41] - Social Deduction Games
[00:01:32] - Two Rooms and a Boom
[00:15:59] - The Resistance
[00:30:05] - Comparison
[00:34:58] - Other Social Deduction Games
[00:38:11] - Broader View

Episode 17: Cooperative Dice

Unfortunately, we had some issues with the recording in this episode, so Mat's sound quality is a little bit distracting.  As a result, we had to do some creative editing, so hopefully this doesn't sound too jarring.  But in this lo-fi episode, we're discussing Ghost Stories and Zombicide: Black Plague, two cooperative games where dice combat is a major part of the game.  In our Broader View, we have a discussion about dealing with alpha players.

[00:00:00] - An apology
[00:00:46] - Introduction
[00:01:28] - Cooperative Dice Games
[00:02:14] - Ghost Stories
[00:17:05] - Zombicide: Black Plague
[00:33:13] - Comparison
[00:39:50] - Other Cooperative Dice Games
[00:42:40] - Broader View

Episode 16: Card Drafting

The category for this episode is card drafting games which we define as games where a player gets a hand of cards, selects one of those cards, and then passes the hand off to another player.  The games that we're comparing our Sushi Go Party and 7 Wonders.  In our Broader View, we talk about storing game components.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:45] - Card Drafting
[00:01:50] - Sushi Go Party
[00:15:23] - 7 Wonders
[00:34:11] - Comparison
[00:39:57] - Other Card Drafting Games
[00:43:14] - Broader View

Episode 15: Mad King Ludwig

This episode takes a look at two similar appearing games that are actually very different.  The category is Mad King Ludwig, who was actually King Ludwig II of Bavaria.  The games we're talking about today are Castles of Mad King Ludwig and The Palace of Mad King Ludwig, which are both tile laying games but play very distinctly from each other.  In our Broader View, we discuss aggressive gameplay and our personal reactions to it.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:41] - Mad King Ludwig
[00:01:59] - Castles of Mad King Ludwig
[00:17:43] - The Palace of Mad King Ludwig
[00:31:31] - Comparison
[00:41:55] - Other Tile Laying Games
[00:44:43] - Broader View

Episode 14: Spiritual Successors

We're hoping that this episode is going to be the first in a series of episodes about Spiritual Successors of games (but if not it works well enough on its own!).  In our first installment of Spiritual Successors, we're taking a look at Eric Lang's series of mythology based area control games: Blood Rage and Rising Sun.  In our Broader View, we're talking about exclusive content in gaming.

[00:00:00] - Introduction
[00:00:50] - Spiritual Successors
[00:01:26] - Blood Rage
[00:22:34] - Rising Sun
[00:34:37] - Comparison
[00:46:42] - Other Spiritual Successors
[00:49:35] - Broader View