New Games Played, New Goals

 Here we are on the final day of November. I had a massive list of seventeen (SEVENTEEN) games that I wanted to play over the week of Thanksgiving. Was I successful in getting them all to the table? No. Not even close. Of the nearly twenty games, only two were played during my break from work, and only three were played in the month of November from that list. 

As far as new games are concerned,  I managed to play four that I hadn't played before. Two of these were on my "Shelf of Shame," while the other two were games I played at a friend's house. What were they? What did I think? Find out below!

New Games Played


This racing game, which is being re-released in a brand new edition very soon if not already, has players assuming the roles of various pirates racing around the island of Jamaica. Each player has a deck of cards which will be shuffled and three drawn. The directions on the cards are identical in each deck, but the order in which you draw them will differ. Players might gain resources: food, gold, or gun powder, or the card might provide movement, both forward and backward. The amount of resources or movement depends on two dice which will be rolled and placed. The first die is the number of resources/movement that will be taken on the bow (left) side of the card (which represents daytime), and the number shown on the second die is for the resource/movement on the starboard (right-hand) side of the card (which takes place at "night"). 

During the race you'll need to feed your crew, pay for certain areas, find treasure, and even battle one another if you ever occupy the same space as another player. The game continues until someone crosses the finish line, gaining fifteen points in the process, and all other players have taken their final turn.

The game was a lot of fun! I enjoyed each player having a deck, similar to racing favorite Downforce, but each deck containing the same cards. There is a lot of luck and randomness involved in Jamaica, but, even with teaching, the game I played took less than an hour. This would be a fun one with family as it is easy to understand and has interaction without being too mean.


Mariposas was a Father's Day gift from my wife. She scoured my Amazon wishlist and chose based on which title had the prettiest box. Despite her method, I'd say that she chose a good one.

In this Elizabeth Hargrave (of Wingspan fame) design, players control monarch butterflies collecting nectar from certain flowers, finding way stations for bonuses, birthing the next generation, and generally doing whatever possible to score points throughout the three-season game.

Publisher AEG made sure that the components matched the beauty of the subject matter. The butterfly pieces are delightful and the fact that they included custom trays for the components is an especially nice touch. 

While I don't think either of us preferred this to Wingspan, it will flutter back to the table again. And maybe this time I'll win.

Outer Rim- 

I'm a sucker for Star Wars. As of writing, I haven't seen Episode IX yet, but I look forward to doing so. Yes, I even like Episode I (notice I didn't say I liked Jar Jar). One of my absolute favorites is Episode III. It doesn't have to be spectacular for me to enjoy anything Star Wars. I anticipated that I'd like this pick-up and deliver game. I did.

Being easily overwhelmed by board games as I am, there was a lot to take in at first. However, once the game got rolling, every action made sense and the four-player game (three of us playing for the first time) began to speed up. 

Being able to gain fame (the winning condition is achieve ten fame) in a multitude of ways is a plus. I like having the option to find strategies that work for me- those that are the most fun to me. Finding synergies between the character chosen and his/her goals with what is available can be extremely beneficial, but I just liked taking care of bounties. 

This wouldn't work for my family as there's too much going on, but I'd gladly play it again.

Word on the Street-

Of all of the new-to-me games, this one is probably the least interesting both to you, dear reader, and in general. Word on the Street is a team-based word game. Teams take turns drawing a card with two possible choices of word-types to spell. One side might say, "Soft drink brands," while the other might be, "Something you use to decorate for Christmas." Answers must be one word and players must correctly spell it. 

Each time a player correctly uses a letter, the letter is brought one space toward the team. Essentially, players are tying to use letters as much as possible to get them to fall off their side of the board and capture it. The first team to capture eight letters wins.

Word on the Street was alright. There are better word games out there. I'll admit I wasn't in a particularly good mood when I played it, but I'm not sure my opinion would improve much even if my mood was. However, I do think Word on the Street would work great in a classroom setting as a station or small-group game.

Tortuga 2199-

I know that I said that I played four new games in November and this is number five. I'll admit- I'm cheating here. In my efforts to have five or more in a topic, I added this Grey Fox Games product, which I played in late October, to the list.

In Tortuga 2199, players are space pirates who are amassing a crew using deck building and attempting to grab fifteen points or control over Tortuga itself- the central planet in this universe. Yes, this is a deck building, area-control game. 

The tiles that make up the game space are gigantic and I like the looks of the various ships. There are several actions that can be taken on your turn, so the supplied reference cards are a must. Tortuga 2199 is another one that seems a little daunting at first for new players, but runs smoothly once those minutia are understood.

Tortuga 2199 reminds me a little bit of Clank, another deck builder with a board. In comparison it feels like Tortuga has a little more adventure and a little less deck building, but it is certainly an enjoyable game. I'm definitely glad that I have the Kickstarter version of Tortuga 2199.


Ok, I need your help here. I would like the final month of 2021 to be the biggest yet for this blog in both views and content. In the month of December,  I plan to release four new posts- one about stocking stuffers, great games for six or more players, game night pairings, and a topic I'm not ready to reveal just yet. My hope is that all of this content will help get this blog 1,500 views over the course of the month.

How can you help? I'm not going to ask you to share (although that would be nice), but something you can do that doesn't cost a thing is give me a follow so that you'll know when new content is released. When there is a new post go check it out! Leaving a comment is also a way to increase traffic (at least I think it is). Plus, I really enjoy reading what you have to say.

The next post- Stocking Stuffers, should be released on either Friday, December 3 or Saturday, December 4. Be on the lookout!

What games did you play in November that were new to you? Leave them below!


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