Critical Review - Viticulture: The Strategic game of Wine Making

Are you a wine connoisseur?  Do you enjoy a good pinot noir, blush, or sparkling wine while gathering with friends for an evening of roundtable discussion?  Can you tell the difference between several different grapes just by feeling them between your toes?  If so, the game we’re going to take a look at today, may be right up your alley, or in this case, vineyard!


Today we’re going to look at Viticulture, the strategic game of winemaking from Jamey Stegmaier and Alan Stone, founders of Stonemaier Games.  What is Viticulture?  Why would a board gamer care?  Let’s delve into the Wine Cellar and get some answers!


Read More 2 Comments





Critical Plays - Descent 2nd Edition - Encounter II of "A Fat Goblin"

We had such good feedback on our first Critical Play series with Descent: Journeys in the Dark, 2nd Edition that we finally got our things together and have filmed Encounter II for your viewing pleasure!  Enjoy and let us know what you think!

Read More 12 Comments





Critical Un-Boxing - Mage Wars

While at Gen Con, I had the pleasure of meeting the Arcane Wonders team, led by Bryan Pope.  They are the makers of Mage Wars, which has been in production for five long years!  Why so long?  Passion!  These guys are working, and have been working, diligently to ensure their game is as best as it can be!


I had the pleasure of meeting with them, talking shop, talking the industry as a whole, and most importantly, talking about Mage Wars!  Mage Wars is a customizeable card game of dueling mages!  It has unique mechanics (like having an actual spellbook and not a deck!) and beautiful artwork, let alone fun gameplay!


I'm working on a critical review, but in the meantime, since there is SO much in this box, I wanted to take a moment and share it with you!  Enjoy!

Read More 5 Comments





Critical Review - Evil Baby Orphanage

While at Gen Con 2012 this year, I had the opportunity to end up at a Game Night Session over at the Hyatt on Friday, where a good friend walked in, slapped a deck box on the table and said, "We have to play this thing... now!"  We proceeded to laugh about the title, laugh louder at the artwork and concept, and then play the thing for 5 hours straight and have a blast!


That was my introduction to Evil Baby Orphanage!


Sadly, I hadn't known about the success of this project on Kickstarter, but after an evening of ruckus fun and laughter, combined with me seeking out Justin Gibbs, one of the designers the next day, I made sure I left Gen Con, not just with a copy or two for myself, but with full knowledge of the universe they created in this whacky and twisted party game!


Wyrd is the game publisher of Evil Baby Orphanage, and while mostly known for mini games, Wyrd has built something twisted, interesting, comical, and honestly, well designed here.  How well?  We've got a video review below, as well as an interview from Gen Con with Justin at the Wyrd booth, along with more after the jump...


Read More 0 Comments





Win an autographed copy of Food Fight!

As you know, I like to share as much love as possible, so this month, I'm happy to bring another contest to you for someone to own something completely cool!


While at Gen Con, I had the opportunity to sit down and talk with Cory Jones, President and Chief Creative Officer for Cryptozoic Entertainment!  Cory talked to us about the upcoming DC Deckbuilding game, the Walking Dead Game, Lookouts, and the many other facets that make up Cryptozoic's armory of success!  At the end, he promised something cool, and I'm here to help bring that to you!


This month, I have an autographed copy of Food Fight from Cryptozoic, signed by Cory and game designer Matt Hyra and marked as Gen Con 2012!  You may remember Matt as the designer of Locke and Key, and the super cool dude who provided us an autographed copy of that for a contest as well previously!


So how do you win?  Simple... 


All you have to do is answer these 5 questions below!  The answers can be found on Cryptozoic's Food Fight site, or in the Cory Jones Interview from Gen Con (linked below as well).  Don't forget to click "submit" to submit your answers!  For each correct answer, you'll be entered into the drawing once and we'll announce a winner on September 21st!  Goodluck!


* Note - 1 Submission per person and the deadline to sumbit is Midnight CST on Thursday the 20th of Septermber 2012!

Read More 0 Comments





Critical Review - (The Ultimate) Smash Up!

“Dude, we need to run, the Aliens are coming!  Here, let’s hide in this mall!  ARGH! There’s Zombies in here, get out!  OK, let’s run to the beach, everyone knows aliens hate water!”…. a short run to the beach later… “ARGH! There’s Pirates here!?  OK, dude, it’ll be ok… quick, I know, the gardens, now!  WHAT!?  Ninjas!?  Quick, get outta here!  OK, no malls, no beaches, no gardens… and the aliens are still coming!  OK… to the library!  WHAT!?  Wizards!?  Who let the 2012 class of Hogwarts out!?  Ugh, ok, quick, I know… Best Buy! Yeah, we’ll hide there…. NO! Why are all the devices alive!?  ROBOTS!?”  Then, when the boys thought all was lost, and they had seen everything, they turned and saw… “A Gnome riding a Dinosaur!?!?”


And think, someone sat in a room and said, “Yes, I LOVE IT!  Run with it!”  And thus, through the design of Paul Peterson, the production of Todd Rowland, and a bevy of great artists, Alderac Entertainment Group brings us Smash Up!  The Shufflebuilding game of total awesomeness!


Read More 0 Comments





Critical Review - Hoplomachus: The Lost Cities

“Listen to me. Learn from me. I was not the best because I killed quickly. I was the best because the crowd loved me. Win the crowd and you will win your freedom.” – Oliver Reed (Proximo), Gladiator


In ancient Rome, Gladiators, also called a Hoplomachus, were warriors of the arena, who wore bronze helmets and armor, wielding spears and swords, all fighting to the death for the glory and favor of the crowd!  The name Hoplomachus means “Armored fighter”, and with spear, sword and shield, these fierce competitors fought for their freedom, they fought for their country, and they fought for the favor of the crowd!


Read More 0 Comments

Subscribe to the Crits Happen YouTube Channel today!

Your donations help continue our work!

Thank you for your support!

Sponsored, in part, by:

Need an insert for your favorite game?

Critical Kicks:

Critically Backed Projects can be seen here!

Critical Tweets:

Critical Feeds:

Father Geek

Dragon Keepers Game Review (prepublished version) (Mon, 12 Mar 2018)
>> Read More