Episode 436: Coronation

Release Date: December 19, 2023

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Running Time:   199 min

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In our season finale, two award winning games earn our Meeple Crown for 2023. These games embody the essence of Major Fun and our Spiel of Approval. Congratulations to Votes for Women and Thunder Road: Vendetta!


Game Night Grab Bag with noted designer (now publisher) Antoine Bauza!

A Meal segment with Paco Garcia from GMS Magazine with holiday treats and games to go with each one.

Episode 435 - Distilled

Release Date: Dec. 9, 2023

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Running Time:   45 min

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The will of a distant relative has left you the sole owner of a distillery that has fallen on hard times. Instead of selling, you decide to take on the task of restoring it to its former glory. It will take dedication, planning, the right mix of quality ingredients and equipment, and a talented staff to turn things around.

Around the globe, several other small distilleries are rising from the ashes. Which one will revive its secret family recipe and gain the most renown as purveyor and producer of the world’s finest spirits? The title Master Distiller is not given. It must be earned.

Distilled is a game of strategic spirit crafting. Follow recipes to gather ingredients hoping they will meld into something sublime as they go through the precarious process of distillation. Bottle and sell what you can or age your creations hoping for a greater payout down the line. Seven rounds stand between you and success.


Episode 434 - Romi Rami

Release Date: Dec. 8, 2023

Download: PDF

Designer: Anotine Lefebvre

Publisher: Randolph, Hachette

2-4 players  | 30 min  |  ages 8+  | 3-4 min to learn | MSRP $15


Romi Rami is a new game with an old soul. It has some famous card game cousins. You may have met them, Rummy and Contract Bridge, or its crazy board game uncle, Ticket to Ride. You’ll collect set of cards from one market in hopes of filling contracts from another. Keep your eyes peeled for the bonus suits and trophies, too. They can really boost your score.

Written review continues after the break.

Episode 433 - Not That Movie!

Release Date: Dec. 7, 2023

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Running Time:   35 min

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Movie Night! You and your friends have gathered to enjoy a flick at the cineplex. But which one? Can you find one you will all agree to watch? 

You scan the listings and realize you don’t know any of these films. Rebel Panda? Kung Fu Soup? Duck Without a Cause??  What are these movies?

Fortunately, you can always rely on the two critics: Polly Positive, and The Grumpy Guy. And look, they reviewed the same movie! 

But which movie is it? Somehow, the title of the movie is missing from their reviews. It’s not clear which picture they are both talking about. 

Is it Interview In the Hat? The Cat Alone?? Maybe Home with the Vampire?

Guided by the reviews, each of you tries to sort it out by process of elimination. Only one movie at the cineplex can be THE ONE. The rest, clearly, are Not That Movie!


Not That Movie is a cooperative Party game. Each round, players work together to determine which mixed up movie title the critics have described through process of elimination. At the end of 5 rounds, are you an epic flop or worthy of an Academy Award?


Episode 432 - Obsession

Release Date: Dec. 6, 2023

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Running Time:   59 min

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Obsession is a richly thematic strategy game depicting the struggles of four once proud family estates in 19th century Britain. Central to the story and the game is the courtship of two eligible Fairchild heirs.  Over the course of four seasons, you must manage, expand, and improve your estate and household staff, host increasingly elaborate activities for guests, and gather an increasingly influential crowd of friends and allies to increase your reputation and standing. The game culminates with a successful courtship and marriage. The family with the best overall standing in Derbyshire will cement its legacy well into the next century.


Episode 431 - Steam Up

Release Date: Dec. 5, 2023

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Running Time:   24 min

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Steam Up is a restaurant known for its sumptuous servings of Dim Sum. Magical creatures come to sample the best bite-size gourmet dishes from bamboo baskets stacked high. Luckily, each animal arrives with an appetite and an agenda for their ideal meal. May the fullest stomach win!

The goal of Steam Up is to collect Hearty Points. You do this by eating dim sum from steamer baskets you rotate to your part of the table. Track the dishes on your board and score according to the rules for your animal. But watch out! Fate and Fortune will play a part in each meal as well.

Listen in to explore the game and discover why Steam Up is a feast for anyone with a hankering for Major Fun!


Episode 430 - District Noir

Release Date: Dec. 4, 2023

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Running Time:   29 min

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There’s a quiet fight simmering... in back alleys and bars, on the docks and warehouses, in a smoke filled back room at the police station and even behind closed doors at city hall.

Rival gangs vie for control for every inch of territory and influence in the city. Real power is measured by your people. Which network of criminals will allow you to seize control? It’ll take all your cunning to hold onto the fickle, fractious town known as District Noir.

District Noir is a two player card game. Collect sets of cards, hoping to amass support of certain criminals or collect three key locations in the city in order to win.

Episode 429 - Wicked & Wise

Release Date: November 21, 2023

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Running Time:   177 min

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Hoarding treasure takes teamwork, even for dragons. Instead of fighting over mountains of glittering gold, these mighty magical beings settle their claims with a civilized game of cards. BUT… lurking in the shadows, each dragon has an accomplice - a tiny mouse trying its best to manipulate the each hand to tilt the outcome in their partner’s favor.

Each trick is a devil’s bargain. Will you take coins to score points or gather powerful magic items to help you win later rounds? Goals add another layer to each card you play. Collect the right combination of suits or numbers and you’ll add to your hoard. Each hand offers a new challenge. Only the best teams know when to be wicked and when to be wise.

Wicked & Wise is a trick taking card game where teams of dragons and mice compete to amass the largest hoard. Dragons play cards to win tricks. Mice play cards to manipulate the game to insure little victories and big ones. Collect coins and complete goals to score


Fertessa Allyse, the designer of Wicked & Wise joins us for Game Night Grab Bag! Our challenge: find 3 games the should be on every Star Fleet vessel.

Taylor Reiner (from Taylor's Trick Taking Table) joins us for a TARDIS Game segment to discuss amazing trick takers that are much bigger than you expect.

Episode 428 - Lacrimosa

Release Date: October 27, 2023

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Running Time:   180 min

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Mozart’s untimely death leaves his family in crisis. How can they survive financially without the maestro? His wife Constanze has a plan: publish a memoir and find composers to finish his last great work... the Requiem.

In Lacrimosa, you play as one of Mozart’s dear friends. Over the course of five rounds you'll compete to gather accolades and respect, and in doing so,  insure the future of Mozart's family.

You'll recount your memories and travels with Mozart and the many musical works you commissioned. All these details will end up in Constanze's memoir, insuring your legacy.

You’ll also find and pay composers to complete the Requiem. Without your help, Mozart’s last work would still sit unfinished.

May the best patron win!


Brandon Jones, Professor of Music and Music Dept. Chair at Wittenberg University, provides us with a historical prologue to enhance our understanding of Mozart's life - a radio play including his entire family (wife, Stephanie and daughters Ravyn and Alaina). He also joins us for a rousing discussion of the game.

Paco Garcia from GMS Magazine and So Play We All gives us a report from the International Game Fair in Essen Germany.

Bruce Voge finds gold in the latest installment of Flickin' Around, exploring the "Guitar Hero of gold panning games," Klondike!

Art Credit: Photo by master1305  licensed through Adobe Stock (no generative AI used)

Episode 427 - Thunder Road: Vendetta

Release Date: August 29, 2023

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Running Time:   130 min

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This road is freedom. This road is escape. But only for one. For the rest it is ruin!

There are no rest stops. Hard charging waves of mayhem and destruction push you ever-forward, never sure what lies beyond the horizon.  You must keep rolling.

This road calls to you - its voice, the sound of furious thunder.

Thunder Road: Vendetta is a reboot of a beloved roll and move car crashing game from the 1980s. Each player starts with 3 vehicles and a chopper. Who will survive this perilous race down Route Sixty Styx?


Brett Myers, co-designer of Thunder Road: Vendetta joins us for a delicious installment of The Meal. We offer up three tasty recipes and games to pair with each one.

Alex Hart from Might I Suggest a Game? joins Doug for our semi-regular game show - Game Night Grab Bag. Each contestant must draft 3 wine-themed titles from a shared library of games.