Wednesday, May 24, 2017

News Snippets

One of the disadvantages of my weekly posting pattern is that I very rarely get to scoop folks - even when I have news early. And that's okay - I'm not doing this to make money or boost my personal fame.  I'm a small corner of the internet that tries to have good information.

Nothing here is something I knew in advance, but I think that these are notable happenings that you should be aware of:

Rory's Story Cubes have been sold to the Asmodee group.

Not The Creativity Hub (the company that currently produces the cubes), not their team. Just the brand. Honestly, knowing as many folks at Asmodee as I do, the game is in good hands.  Especially as:
Over the next few years, we (Rory, myself and The Creativity Hub team) will work with Asmodee to help with the brand philosophy and product development of Rory’s Story Cubes.
 AlphaGo defeated the #1 Go player in the world.

It's only the first of three games, and AlphaGo only won by half a point, but this is as significant as Deep Blue defeating Kasparov a while back.  There will be another game tomorrow and then one this weekend.

I once saw Go described as a game with rules "so simple that they feel like a force of nature." At the same time, there is a depth of strategy to the game that I cannot even begin to fathom.

The AlphaGo team will be live-streaming on their page, and I hope to watch.

I have to wonder how long before we see similar matchups for other games - Shogi, for example.

The 2017 Spiel des Jahres nominees have been announced.

The link is in German, but you should have no trouble figuring out which games are nominated.

This year, I've only played two of the games on the final list - Ice Cool (on the Kinderspiel list) and Terraforming Mars (from the Kennerspiel list).  Both games are excellent and worth grabbing.  I've also played two games on the "recommended list," both of them are on the Kennerspiel list: Captain Sonar and The Grizzled.  Great games, and well worth your time.


  1. Terraforming Mars is excellent. I think Captain Sonar is amazing if you have 8 players who all know what they're doing. The Grizzled is fun, but impossible to win.

    1. We've beat The Grizzled before. It's DIFFICULT to win, but not completely impossible.

      I love Captain Sonar. I'm still waiting for my copy, though, so I've only played other folks' copies.

      Terraforming Mars is good - it's also an odd game, because there isn't anything unique or innovative in its design. Love it, mind you, but just find it an odd duck for SdJ.