56 posts tagged with Games and boardgames.
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How Fun Works (3rd edition, revised)

Noted boardgaming blog Shut Up & Sit Down (previously) has been publishing its "Top 25 Games Ever!" all week long. Now that the series is complete, let the arguing begin: 25-21, 20-16, 15-11, 10-6, 5-1.
posted by jbickers on Dec 12, 2014 - 35 comments

Students applauded and were visibly moved in the game's final moments

The best learning games are always fun. Try playing them yourself and see if you enjoy them. No matter how advanced your understanding of the subject matter, a good game should still be fun. I've understood algebra and number partitions for decades, but DragonBox and Wuzzit Trouble are still challenging puzzlers that I like to fiddle with on long airline flights. All good games offer challenges in intuitive ways. In fact, this is the reason games work so well for learning: Players are intrinsically motivated to identify and succeed at understanding the game's mechanics.
The MindShift Guide to Digital Games and Learning provides a basic introduction to the use of video games in education, gives several thought-provoking examples, and points to numerous sites with related goals, including Edutopia's articles on game-based learning and Graphite's reviews of digital games with educational content. Meanwhile, this being what The Guardian has just called "Board games' golden age," resources such as Play Play Learn, BoardGameGeek's Games in the Classroom, and The Dice Tower's recent countdown of "Top Ten Games for the Classroom" offer interesting options for the tabletop as well. [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Nov 25, 2014 - 5 comments

Chesscademy

Chesscademy is a chess teaching website modelled on Codecademy. As such, it gives a sequence of short puzzles and exercises which help you build up knowledge of everything from how the pieces move to the intricacies of positional play. Sections of each 'course' are introduced by a short video. It's like a well-written chess book with interactive diagrams!
posted by kaibutsu on Aug 10, 2014 - 11 comments

They all have optimal strategies but pursue different victory conditions

Big Game Theory! Board games that tell stories. The Bored Gaymer. A girl likes games. HiveGod's Yell Matrix. QWERTYUIOP. 365 Days of Gaming. Those are a few of the most favorited current blogs on BoardGameGeek, and these are a few of their most favorited posts. [more inside]
posted by Monsieur Caution on Jul 15, 2014 - 17 comments

Murder, She Wrote. And Played.

"But I’m getting ahead of myself. First, let me tell you a story: a story about a board game. The Murder, She Wrote board game. You didn't know such a thing existed? Neither did I, before my friend Sarah brought it one summer to camp. (For the sake of clarity: I mean camp in the upstate New York sense, i.e., a small un-insulated cottage on a freshwater lake that has a preponderance of mismatched glasses and forks with wonky tines and maybe exposed studs but is the greatest place to family-vacation on earth.) Sarah and I met in day care, and had been friends for years—but this year, when she came to visit, she unknowingly brought the one thing that would enflame my jealousy." [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 1, 2014 - 35 comments

Grantland Tackles Boardgames

Competitive board gamers are a serious lot. Perhaps none are more serious than the players of the most ruthless and harrowing board game of all: Diplomacy.
posted by absalom on Jun 18, 2014 - 188 comments

Designing a Legacy Game

Risk: Legacy, released in 2011, adds an interesting twist to the classic boardgame: it introduces permanent, game-changing modifications to the board and game pieces every time it is played. Last year, the designer of the game, Rob Daviau, gave a fascinating talk on the design challenges inherent in such a game. The video of that talk is now freely available to watch. [more inside]
posted by tocts on Jan 7, 2014 - 58 comments

Games people (can) play (by themselves)

Lonely? Bored? Well, the 2013 Solitaire Print and Play Contest is here to help you stave off boredom this weekend (and burn through all of your printer ink). This year's winner is Maquis, a "solitaire worker-placement game with variable goals and a play time of approximately twenty minutes. The player places his resistance agents on spaces around town to achieve his goals - blowing up trains, publishing underground newspapers - but at the same time Milice collaborators and Wehrmacht soldiers patrol the area." [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Dec 6, 2013 - 5 comments

Ages 3 and Up

"Queen Frostine turned into a Bratz doll" - The evolution of sexed-up Candyland.
posted by Artw on Apr 26, 2013 - 57 comments

Faster Than Light

Davis and Ma wrote up a long list of one-paragraph game pitches to prototype. They would be small, manageable games that two people could complete on their own. The game they chose to go with would have to be finished within a year, because that was all they had budgeted for. Among the pitches inspired by board games, roguelikes and all the genres that excited them was a 2D, top-down management game called FTL. The Opposite of Fail - The making of FTL (Previously)
posted by Artw on Mar 17, 2013 - 19 comments

Player Elimination

Allan B. Calhamer, creator of the board game Diplomacy, passed away on February 25th. Despite the game's success he never made a living off it, and worked for many years as a mail carrier in La Grange Park, Illinois. Chicago Magazine published a profile of him in 2009.
posted by 23 on Feb 28, 2013 - 39 comments

Advance to blue triple circle!

Take a copy of Monopoly, cover it in lye for a few days, boil from off the bones whatever flesh remains, and give the clean white skeleton a tasteful, minimalist paintjob, and you end up with ONOPO, an extreme reduction of the original boardgame by Metafilter's own Matthew Hollett, aka oulipian. Via mefi projects, hat tip to fastcodesign c/o Rock Paper Shotgun's always-lovely Sunday Papers feature.
posted by cortex on Jan 20, 2013 - 56 comments

CGBG

In November 2007, a new board game called Yavalath was invented. The rules of Yavalath are simple: Players take turns adding a piece of their colour to a hexagonal board and win by making four-in-a-row of their colour – but lose by making three-in-a-row beforehand. Yavalath has proven reasonably popular as its simple rules allow interesting and surprising situations to develop due to its innovative win with four but lose with three winning condition. But Yavalath is really set apart from the many other board games invented in 2007 by one remarkable fact: Yavalath was designed by a computer programme. [more inside]
posted by rollick on Jan 19, 2013 - 20 comments

The Board Games Women Make

Ever played Monopoly? Then you've played a board game that was designed by a woman (it was, under its original title, "The Landlord's Game," the creation of Elizabeth Magie). Want to play more board games designed by women? Let's go! [more inside]
posted by ocherdraco on Dec 16, 2012 - 24 comments

Monopoly Is Theft

Monopoly Is Theft. The antimonopolist history of the world’s most popular board game.
posted by Combustible Edison Lighthouse on Oct 24, 2012 - 36 comments

Prison Chess

Photographs of the Prison Chess series were taken in 2008 and 2009 in a maximum security facility of the New Jersey State Prison in Trenton. [more inside]
posted by Trurl on Jan 27, 2012 - 18 comments

Open source online board game engine with over 1,000 modules

Here is VASSAL, an open-source engine for playing board games online, by email, on forums or on a single machine. Which board games? These. (Requires Java.)
posted by JHarris on Dec 7, 2011 - 41 comments

Cheapass As In Free

Did you know that popular, absurdly inexpensive board game producer James Ernest's Cheapass Games has released some of their most popular games as free PDFs? Among them Deadwood, Devil Bunny Needs A Ham, The Big Cheese, FALLING and Unexploded Cow? [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Jul 23, 2011 - 34 comments

I WILL kill you!

In 1979, gaming company Avalon Hill (since bought by Hasbro) released a board game based on the popular science fiction novel Dune. Regarded by many as a masterpiece of the form, it is an asymmetrical wargame designed by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge and Peter Olotka, the people who created Cosmic Encounter. Six different factions vie for control of the desert planet Arrakis. As WickerNipple notes in his Everything node on the game, “Instead of giving subtle differences to the various factions like most games, Dune gives huge differences and advantages, that don't over-balance things only because every faction receives them.” The thing is, each player has special rules that give them very different options and abilities compared to the other sides, and yet the game remains balanced (especially when played by a full six players). The game has been long out of print due to the Frank Herbert estate refusing to re-license. Fantasy Flight Games is rumored to be working on a release of the game without the Dune license. Importantly, all the necessary files are available on the game's BoardGameGeek page to construct a copy of the game. (Homebrew game board - Rules, cards, counters and extras - Windows freeware game client and server) [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Feb 23, 2011 - 58 comments

Computer defeats women's shogi champion

Four different shogi-playing software programs combined forces to "aggressively pursue" and defeat female champion Ichiyo Shimizu in 86 moves. (previously)
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 12, 2010 - 25 comments

Magnificent Obsessions # 3,299

The art of Clue suspect cards through the years, courtesy of The Art of Murder, a comprehensive Clue fan site.
posted by anastasiav on Oct 11, 2010 - 37 comments

"ludo-erotica in the boardgame show for the ages"

DowntimeTown is the boardgame review site of Scottish comedian Robert Florence, previously of Consolevania and Videogaiden [and previously on MetaFilter]. The heart of DowntimeTown are the wonderful video reviews, recommendations is a better word, where Florence explains why he likes the games under review so damn much, in an irreverent but loving fashion. There are plain ol' text reviews too, besides a whole host of other goodness. Links to individual videos below the cut. [more inside]
posted by Kattullus on Sep 11, 2010 - 11 comments

Board Games with Scott!

Confused in Catan? Conflicted about Carcassonne? Puzzled in Puerto Rico? You've heard about all these awesome new board games that are out these days, but don't know where to begin? Help is here! Scott Nicholson knows all about 'em, and will explain them in great detail in his video series Board Games With Scott! [more inside]
posted by JHarris on Aug 8, 2010 - 56 comments

Advanced Squad Leader

Advanced Squad Leader is a tactical-level board wargame, originally marketed by Avalon Hill Games, that simulates actions of approximately company or battalion size in World War II. ... Despite the price tag and the expensive lists of prerequisites for each new module, the game system caught on and new modules continued to be produced twenty years after the original release - a feat unheard of in the board wargaming industry, especially with the decline in sales due to rising popularity of console and PC games. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Mar 22, 2010 - 75 comments

Sesquioxidizingfragalisticexpialadocious

Scrabulizer lets you enter the current state of your game in Scrabble and shows you all possible moves. They've also discovered a move worth 2044 Points
posted by minifigs on Sep 29, 2009 - 57 comments

Vintage Cycling Board Games

A huge collection of vintage cycling board games. The main site also has resources for rolling your own cycling game.
posted by OmieWise on Sep 18, 2009 - 14 comments

Panzers and air raids and artillery, oh my

World Wars 2, sequel to the hex-wargame-inspired World Wars, has been released. [more inside]
posted by XMLicious on Aug 9, 2009 - 24 comments

"Men are born for games."

At the recent Games for Change conference, Brenda Brathwaite debuted her game Train. The WSJ blog Speakeasy interviews her: Players load boxcars with tiny yellow figurines and are asked to move the trains from one end of the course to the other. They pull cards that either impede their progress or free some of the characters. Once a train reaches the "finish line," the game is completed and it is revealed [more inside]
posted by j.edwards on Jun 25, 2009 - 49 comments

The Campaign for North Africa

Even among "monster games", it stands alone. A 7-foot mapsheet. 1,800 counters. 1,500 hours to play. It is SPI's The Campaign for North Africa.
posted by Joe Beese on May 11, 2009 - 89 comments

Pimp my (board) game

Geeky? Crafty? Got some time on your hands? Make your own boardgame pieces! Tutorials for making custom 3-d Settlers of Catan tiles (and gorgeous custom sets here, and here, although with no instructions,alas). Agricola more your style? Grab some polymer clay and get making resources, more resources, food, sheep, more sheep, boars, cattle, and (of course) farmers, farmers, farmers, farmers, farmers, and farmers. Don't forget fences, tiles, and a starting player piece. Lots more in the image gallery at BoardGameGeek.
posted by arcticwoman on Mar 2, 2009 - 15 comments

The game is on.

SoftBoard Games: Free, Commercial, and Abandoned Computer Versions of Board and Card Games with Computer AI (Artificial Intelligence) Opponents.
posted by jbickers on Nov 10, 2008 - 10 comments

Get ready to burn through a lot of ink!

"A Solitaire Civization game that's compact enough to play on a plane ... Using only a pad of paper, a pencil, and a specialized deck of cards, lead your civilization through the ages to become ... civilized." A free "print-and-play" board game. [more inside]
posted by jbickers on Sep 25, 2008 - 20 comments

Chess Problems

Chess Problems has hundreds of problems in six difficulty classes from novice to fiendish [java]
posted by Kattullus on Feb 16, 2008 - 10 comments

Chess tactics explained in plain English

A Field Guide to Chess Tactics. Chess tactics explained in plain English, with hundreds of examples. A great site for beginning to mid-level players. Includes a large library of positional problems, organized thematically, with the solutions explained and discussed. For example, learn about knight forks, then quiz yourself on the same topic.
posted by Rumple on Jun 19, 2007 - 76 comments

I vant to be aloooone ...

"The definitive list of single-player games." Here's another. And if your Paypal account balance means eBay isn't an option, here's a whole mess of stuff to do by yourself with a basic deck of cards.
posted by jbickers on Jun 17, 2007 - 3 comments

Virus, a flash based tile game

Virus is a very simple, addictive flash game; using the colors available to you at the bottom of the screen, convert all the tiles on the board into a single color. Similar colored connecting tiles become part of the viral mass. Via.
posted by jonson on Feb 21, 2007 - 75 comments

Grob spike-attack, Santasiere's folly, and the vulture defense

Chess has a long, if somewhat shrouded, history, with beautiful chess pieces found dating from the 5th century. It has spawned hundreds of fascinating stories, and many interesting names for moves. For the last five decades, the history of chess and computers have been intertwined in many ways. Chess continues to adapt to a new age, with controversies around computer-assisted cheating, attempts to sex-up chess books, thousands of variants, and an amazing online database that can search through recorded games for the last 200 years.
posted by blahblahblah on Dec 4, 2006 - 5 comments

How about a nice game of chess?

Free Computer Version of Board and Card Games with Artificial Intelligence Computer Opponents and with Screen Shots is exactly what is says. Now those of you who've had their interest piqued by such games as Settlers of Catan or others mentioned in the Top 100 Boardgames thread can try games such as these without ponying up the thirty bucks for a big box of boards and pieces.
posted by jtron on Jul 26, 2006 - 10 comments

So, who's got wood for my sheep?

Posit: Settlers of Catan is the greatest board game of all time. (Read the rules and see for yourself, just don't go too crazy with changing them.) Why not spend Saturday playing online? There are several java versions available for those leery of installing things.
posted by absalom on Jul 8, 2006 - 28 comments

Hnefatafl

Hnefatafl is an anglo-norse boardgame whose many variants are mentioned in the sagas (wearing a helmet during play is entirely optional) . Chess superseded it during the rennaisance, but Scholarly work has allowed the rules to be deduced in modern times, mainly on the basis of a 1732 diary account written by Linnaeus (he of the botanical naming system).

And now, thanks to the magic of the internet, you can play online.
posted by apodo on Mar 28, 2006 - 17 comments

roll the dice, move your mice!

The 100 best board games... (at least according to this guy).
posted by crunchland on Dec 8, 2005 - 112 comments

Ludite pilam!

Roman ball games and Roman board games. Complete with literary references, ancient artwork, and instructions for playing the games yourself. So let's all sing: Aufer me ad arenam (to the tune of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame").
posted by stopgap on Jan 19, 2005 - 2 comments

An old general, cardboard bits, yesterday's battle

90+ Vietnamese general Vo Nguyen Giap buys 100 copies of "Vallee De La Morte", a board game recreation of the battle of Dien Bien Phu There actually are 2 competing board game recreations of the epic 1954 battle of Dien Bien Phu which was (by the French):

""....an attempt to interdict the enemy's rear area, to stop the flow of supplies and reinforcements, to establish a redoubt in the enemy's rear and disrupt his lines," says Douglas Johnson, research professor at the U.S. Army War College's Strategic Studies Institute. "The enemy could then be lured into a killing ground."....Hoping to draw Ho Chi Minh's guerrillas into a classic battle, the French began to build up their garrison at Dien Bien Phu..." General Giap - who led the Vietcong forces in that battle, prefers "Vallee De La Morte". Such games are played with large multicolored paper maps broken up into hexagonal grids, with cardboard pieces representing military units. The rules can be quite complex and some wargames ( such as Drang Nach Osten) have thousands of pieces and take thousands of hours to play (sometimes longer than the actual wars they simulate). More on wargaming.
posted by troutfishing on Apr 26, 2004 - 26 comments

Variations on a theme

If you're bored with the kind of chess grandpappy taught you, know there are well over 1,000 other ways to do it. Play chess on a Moebius strip, with hexagons, or like Monopoly. Or play Chaturanga, chess's earliest ancestor. And if you don't have the time to, say, build your own 3-D Star Trek chessboard, there are also variations playable with a standard chess set.
posted by tepidmonkey on Apr 7, 2004 - 13 comments

The games people play

Perhaps it says something about the intellectual sophistication of ancient cultures that some of the most entertaining games in existence are thousands of years old: backgammon, Go, mancala... The now-ubiquitous chess is a relative newcomer, dating back merely 1400 years. One wonders whether Boggle or Monopoly will withstand the test of time so well.
posted by letourneau on Feb 18, 2004 - 17 comments

Japanese Prints and the World of Go

Japanese Prints and the World of Go. Classic Japanese art meets classic Japanese boardgame.
'The purpose of this catalogue is twofold: to enlarge the understanding of print collectors who may be unaware of the long historical and legendary background of a game that has for centuries engaged the interest of many artists in Japan; and to enrich the experience of go players by presenting works that reveal some of the large body of traditions and associations connected with the game in Japan's cultural life. Although artists were inspired by the game of go to work the theme in several media--wood, ivory, metal, textiles, and clay, and while the motif appears on numerous scroll and screen paintings--it is in woodblock prints (ukiyo-e) that its image is most frequently found.'
'. . . there is a text that likens the world to a go-board. For those who see with their minds, it is the centre of the universe.'
Warning: Each sub-link in the article opens a new window.
posted by plep on Nov 19, 2003 - 10 comments

Monopoly Odds

Monopoly Stats. Now you can play the odds [via boingboing.net]
posted by srboisvert on Sep 19, 2003 - 11 comments

Life's a Game

If life's a game, how do you win? We've been mapping our paths through life for centuries, but it took an American Civil War-era publisher to turn it into a boardgame (after Lincoln's new beard killed demand for his line of clean-shaven presidential portraits). In the age of the PC we can find the answer to life in games, live parallel lives in games, simulate the evolution of life in games, and search for everlasting life in games - but can they beat the dusty old box and dice? And what life lessons are all these games teaching us?
posted by rory on Mar 26, 2003 - 14 comments

Create your own Monopoly Game

Create your own Monopoly Game Surely the perfect customised gift? You can change the name of the game, the theme, the name of the properties/stations, and also the rules. Apparently it uses a 'What You See Is What You Get Realtime Interface', which allows users to personalise the game completely to their requirements, and then print out and proof the new design. What I find most interesting about this product offering is that the whole process is completely automated. Once you've designed and ordered your customised game, it goes straight to print/production, and is then sent out to you. No human intervention is required. This appears to me to be pretty ground breaking stuff (well in the Toy World anyway), or am I just way behind the times? (via the Ecademy discussion list)
posted by RobertLoch on Jun 28, 2002 - 28 comments

Take It Easy

Take It Easy An online version of the award-winning board game Take It Easy. The highest possible score is 307 -- what can you get?
posted by Shadowkeeper on Feb 19, 2002 - 26 comments

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