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scottd
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Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 00:09
Our family is hooked on Days of Wonder games. I purchased Memoir '44 for my son last Christmas and Pirate's Cove for my oldest daughter. This year I purchased Ticket to Ride. We love them all. Now for Christmas 2007 I am trying to decide if Shadows over Camelot is our next game. I have a 12 year old daughter, 10 year old son and a 5 year old daughter. Is SoC mainly an adult game, mainly a boys or mens game? Do wives enjoy it teenage girls?

Thank you
Scott
      
ColtsFan76
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 01:06
Tough call. It is not necessarily just a "boys" game but the King Arthur Myth probably connects better with them. The game mechanics aren't too difficult to grasp. It is mostly "set collection" of cards and playing them at the quest. There is the "choose one option" per turn mentality of TTR. Each player has one special ability so the rules aren't too hard to grasp. You all work together and can opt not to use the traitor in the beginning to see how it goes. It also has the option to go up to 7 players if other family or friends want to join in. The wives/girlfriends in our group don't mind the game but it isn't on top of their favorites list either.

I would think you may want to check out Mystery of the Abbey next. It seems more "family" oriented. Possible even Cleopatra and the Society of Architects. Colosseum may be a bit too advanced with the auctions and planning ahead right now.

[Updated on: Wed, 17 October 2007 01:07]

      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 02:50
Thank you very much for your kind and helpful advice. I was planning on getting Mystery for my older daughter. She enjoys mystery books like Nancy Drew and we play ND video games together. In fact my whole family enjoys that kind of thing, so I think Mystery is on our short list.

Do you think SoC is more for adults or would a group of my son's friends enjoy that? BattleLore is also on our list for my son.

Thank you for your time. I do appreciate it.

Scott
      
Nordiskanc
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 03:42
My 8 year old daughter plays it, see asks for it, I would say it is one of the top two requests by her for game play. My wife plays it, by sister in law plays its and my friend's wives have all played. So females do play it.
      
ColtsFan76
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 03:57
There really isn't anything specific about SOC that makes it "adult." I would imagine a bunch of 10-y/o's would enjoy the game just fine.

BattleLore is a great game as well. Just realize it is a 2-player game unless you get some of the expansions. Lots of pieces in that one. Not sure how the 5 y/o would react to all the "toys."

If I had to order the games for the family, I would say:
-Mystery of the Abbey
-Cleopatra and SoA
-SOC
-Colosseum

For just your son,
-BattleLore
-SOC

But I am sure others may differ on that Wink
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 15:14
Thank you both for your advice. The games are great but a bit expensive, so I want to make sure we get one we all enjoy. I will probably get BattleLore soon for my son. We have really enjoyed Memoir '44. I will be getting some of those expansions for him for his b-day and for Christmas.

I do appreciate all of your help. Coltsfan, I perused your arm4one site. Good stuff. I pastor a church in Iowa.

Scott
      
ColtsFan76
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 17 October 2007 16:00
scottd wrote on Wed, 17 October 2007 08:14

The games are great but a bit expensive, so I want to make sure we get one we all enjoy.

Yes, they are expensive but most of the DOW games are worth it. I am a rules reader so I always like to read the rules of a game and grasp as much of it as possible before buying the game. Luckily, you can do that with all the DOW games (except BattleLore). So maybe it would be wise to download the PDFs and read them for yourself. That should give you a better idea if it is something your kids will grasp and enjoy as well.

Quote:

I do appreciate all of your help. Coltsfan, I perused your arm4one site. Good stuff. I pastor a church in Iowa.

Scott

Great to hear that! Always glad to see families enjoying games together and getting to meet a new brother online!
      
rdhight
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Thu, 18 October 2007 04:00
That's cool. My mom's a women's ministries pastor at our church in SW Washington State, and my dad's an elder there. It's nice to hear from some other Christians who don't jump at shadows (heh heh) where games are concerned. Some people I've gone to church with wouldn't dream of allowing their kids to play a game where someone might be the traitor. THINK OF THE CHILDREN!

In answer to the original question, I don't see Camelot as a guy game at all. My mother and sister both play happily. "Combat" has zero realism, and the rules are light and non-technical.

There are two things I would warn you about. First, so far, we've found that Evil can hardly help but win in a three-player game. I think that even when we've improved our skills considerably, we're going to get much more enjoyment out of the game with more than three. This is a big disadvantage compared to Heroscape, where I usually keep a board or boards set up to handle two to four players smoothly. Second, I don't see why I would ever want to play this game without the possibility of a traitor. Some people have said they enjoy it, but I just can't get there. I like Shadows a lot, but the main reason is the way the traitor threat takes what's essentially a lightweight game and elevates it to something more. If you intend to play without a traitor even part of the time, I think the place you assign Shadows on your want list should really drop.
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Thu, 18 October 2007 15:26
Thank you for your advice. I know I would enjoy playing the traitor. That probably sounds bad, a pastor playing a traitor, but it would be fun and provide good lessons to teach. My children might not enjoy that. That, really, is my only concern. We are not hardcore gamers, we just enjoy playing creative board games as a family. As they get older they would probably enjoy the traitor more.

Again, I appreciate all of your thoughts. It is good to get advice from experienced gamers. Queen's Necklace looks fun too....Will the possibilities every end?

Scott
      
ColtsFan76
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Thu, 18 October 2007 15:59
scottd wrote on Thu, 18 October 2007 08:26


Will the possibilities every end?

Scott

No. The path we follow is wide and destructive. Buying more games leads to more games. Smile

As far as the traitor, my comment on him was to keep him out of the game the first time or two. I have found this game is hard enough to win with newbies that the traitor just adds an extra level of frustration that could be detrimental to them returning to the game (ok, maybe my friends are just whiney!).

Anyway, once they are conmfortable with the basic mechanics, then I think the traitor should be included. It is an integral part of the game - but also one that is randomly inserted. So playing without him on purpose doesn't upset the balance too much - just removes the tension and doubting!
      
AK_Aramis
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Thu, 18 October 2007 21:10
In re other DoW games vs SoC:

my 8yo had great difficulty with SoC at age 7, but not with CatSoA... At 8, she's playing Colosseum credibly (but not well).


In Re Religion:

Like several others, I'm a Christian and a Gamer. My dad is a Roman Catholic Deacon, and I'm a practicing Byzantine Catholic.

I see nothing wrong with games (even violent ones) as long as they are abstract and have justification for said violence. Historicals are good enough for me.

Video games, now, I'm MUCH more picky about what I'll let my kids play. The link between violence in board games and RPG's and violence in life is at best tenuous. The link between violent videogames (especially realistic 1st person) and violence in the real world is much stronger...

I like the variety of non-violent games DoW has. I also like both their wargames (M44 and BL).

[Updated on: Thu, 18 October 2007 21:16]

      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Fri, 19 October 2007 16:42
Thank you AK,

Two votes now for Cleopatra. I will have to look into that one more. Regarding video games. We play the sports games, and we like the Nancy Drew mysteries, with the exception of some minor cult/ghost stuff that we tolerate. I am sure that I am pretty strict compared to some and that is a tough one to balance. I feel pretty strongly, because I see its effects on our students at church, that playing the high intensity violent video games are off limits to our children.

That is one reason I really enjoy board games. It requires thought and not merely adrenalin and reaction. It is far more interactive with the people playing than one or two people glued to a monitor. OK, enough preaching...back to the game.

      
ColtsFan76
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Fri, 19 October 2007 17:39
scottd wrote on Fri, 19 October 2007 09:42

Two votes now for Cleopatra. I will have to look into that one more.

There might be a lesson in this game as well! The person with the most corruption loses outright and then the person remaining with the most points wins. So though you may get ahead by being bad, it will catch up with you in the end!

Give it a look. You may be surprised.
      
reverendvader
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sun, 21 October 2007 00:30
The message of Cleopatra:

It doesn't pay to be the most corrupt even though it helps you get rich quicker. But it does pay to be the second-most corrupt...

Beware the dark side!

Heh heh.

Also, I've played SoC with my kids (10 and 7) and they enjoy it just fun. We just don't bother with the traitor option and are pretty lax on the table-talk rule...

(And, on a related note to everyone else's comments in this thread: I too am a pastor and spend a fair amount of time boardgaming with teens in our youth group as well as my youth leaders, college students, and other adults in our church.)

[Updated on: Sun, 21 October 2007 00:33]

      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sun, 21 October 2007 03:54
Thank you for your input. I wonder how we pastors have so much time for board games and blogs about them? But seriously, I am very thankful for all the input on choices. At this time I am thinking about getting SoC for my son and family and Mystery for my eldest daughter and family. I will probably buy one of the Memoir '44 expansions for my son this year and BattleLore next year.

Good thing they are still young. By the time they graduate from school Days of Wonder reps can retire on the money we send their way.

Enjoy your Sundays!
Scott
      
Charleson
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sun, 25 November 2007 03:37
Just got SoC this weekend.

I've played 3 or 4 games with my kids. We had a blast! With my kids and nephews certain unspoken alliances between 2 or 3 players develop in most other games. It was great to have everyone (well, almost everyone) working together in SoC.

Good lessons about teamwork and sacrifice here too!

[Updated on: Mon, 26 November 2007 03:34]

      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sun, 25 November 2007 14:32
Thank you for the response. My son's birthday is December 10. We have SoC ready to be wrapped and given. I am looking forward to that day. I have been reading the instructions over and over so we can play without much delay. In the mean time he received some early presents from aunts and uncles that were expansions to his Memoir '44 game. So we begin today, in the desert!

Thank you!
      
Charleson
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Mon, 26 November 2007 03:33
How old is your son, Scott? It might be nice to wrap a copy of T.H. White's The Once and Future King and/or The Book of Merlin with the game too. If the game can springboard our kids into reading, so much the better.

BTW, my family played our first full game with the traitor today. My oldest nephew was able to fool us and win the game at the very end when we thought Camelot had been saved. What a hoot!



[Updated on: Mon, 26 November 2007 03:35]

      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Mon, 26 November 2007 04:31
my son will turn 11 on his birthday. I did buy a copy of "King Arthur and his Knights". I think I will read that with him. He read a lot, but that might be a hard book to read on his own. I am unfamiliar with the books you mentioned. We have also read through most of the Narnia books as well, which has a similar feel.

We will probably play several games without the traitor to get a feel for the game, especially if it is only my 3 kids with one being 5 and probably my helper. I am glad you are having fun with the game. I have a few weeks left to wait.

Thank you
      
Charleson
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Tue, 27 November 2007 04:28
scottd wrote on Sun, 25 November 2007 22:31

I am unfamiliar with the books you mentioned.



Scott, I would be hard pressed to choose between which I liked best in the fantasy genre, Lord of the Rings, or the Once and Future King. There's probably a good doctoral thesis in comparing and contrasting the books against the time period of the Second World War in which they both were written.

Here's a link to a pretty good review of TOAFK:

http://www2.netdoor.com/~moulder/thwhite/toafk_a.html
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Tue, 27 November 2007 16:03
Thank you for the further information on that book. I will check it out. I have read through the LoTR books and watched the movies. Great story. We haven't read through them as a family yet. They require a lot of work reading. There is so much detail in them, and not all necessary to the story in my mind, but great stories of nobility, faith, courage and brotherhood. All great qualities for my son to learn (I suppose for me to learn to!)

FYI a great book for fathers of boys is "Raising a Modern Day Night" by Robert Lewis.

Now, where did the dice go?
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Thu, 13 December 2007 04:54
Well, my son's birthday arrived the other day and we have begun our first adventure in Camelot. Wow! We are enjoying it, although my wife would rather have the evil progress every 3rd round instead of each turn. We haven't completed the game yet, we are so busy at this time of year, but I hope to finish it this weekend. The siege engines are a pain, easy to put them up early in the game and then they mount quickly.

My older daughter has won one quest and I am near to finding the holy grail. My son enjoys the game as well as playing with the Pics/Saxons and the knights while he is waiting his turn.

We are having a blast talking like knights. I am using this as an opportunity to encourage nobility and courage in his heart.

Bottom line: we enjoy the game a lot!

Scott
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sat, 15 December 2007 05:03
Game one over. Camelot lost!

We had a great time. It took several days to finish, that was a bit frustrating. I am sure we will get better over time. We couldn't keep the siege engines at bay. I will look for some tips and hints.

The game is fun. My wife struggled with instigating evil on every move, but the rest of us enjoyed it. We will choose a different strategy next time. We won Lancelot's armor but that was it. I was close at the grail but we kept drawing despair and desolation cards!

Oh well. We will try again. All in all we had fun. It is fun acting like nights.

Scott
      
Nordiskanc
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sat, 15 December 2007 16:33
Some basic strategies for the catapults. Once about 8 are around camelot someone (at least) needs to always be in camelot fighting them or they will over take the city. Sir Kay is ideal for fighting them due to his ability or the person with Excalibur due to the +1.
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sat, 15 December 2007 17:05
Thank you for your help. My wife was a bit discouraged. She doesn't like evil (who does), but with help like yours and from some other reading and just playing we will get better. We thought we should play the game with the Lord of the Rings soundtrack playing the background. That might aid to the foreboding mood set by evil...

Having fun and ready to fight again.
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Sat, 22 December 2007 16:50
Fellow Knights,

We have saved Camelot on our second try! It was tough, down 4-1 with nasty black cards in play (Mists of Avalon and Vivien). But the four of us stayed true to our courage, and fought gallantly. We drew Heroism at just the right time, found the Holy Grail, took the lead. Our final battles were against the Picts and Saxons. We won three battles to secure the victory over the darkness.

Our strategy was to pick black cards for most progressions of evil until we had to give up life points and add siege engines. We were fortunate to get a card that gave each of us life points when we really needed it. We rarely drew a black card toward the end, since we were one Pict away from losing Camelot.

We were all thrilled and we love the game. Thank you for all of your help.

Scott (Arthur)
      
travisjhall
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Tue, 25 December 2007 00:22
scottd wrote on Sun, 16 December 2007 02:05

Thank you for your help. My wife was a bit discouraged. She doesn't like evil (who does),

Maybe it would help if she thought of it a different way, like this...

The Progression of Evil phase is not the knight (or the player) "doing evil". Evil happens, despite the will of good people, at times. We can, however, choose to fight against evil. Every turn, the minions of evil attempt to both aid the siege of Camelot (add a siege engine) and do evil throughout the land (draw a black card). Being a strong man of good heart, though, a knight fights to thwart that evil, thus stopping the minions from succeeding in one of their two objectives. The knight chooses how to fight evil at this time, thus choosing one evil action to stop, and (much to his dismay) one to allow. However, with an especially heroic effort, a knight may thwart the minions of evil entirely, though at great personal cost (sacrificing a life point). Just remember that a live knight fighting evil is far more valuable to the cause of good than a dead martyr.

Playing the traitor may be even more distasteful to your wife, of course, for then she actually does have to pretend to be an evil person. In that case, let me ask you... Suppose a theatre group performs a passion play. Doesn't somebody have to play the part of the Romans who crucified Christ? Else the story cannot be told, and most Christians I think would agree that this is a story that should be told. The same is true of Shadows Over Camelot - we can pretend to be the traitor without harbouring evil in our own hearts, and do so for good reason. Pretending to be evil allows the other players to be pretend to be heroic and fighting against a greater evil than they would otherwise face.
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Tue, 25 December 2007 04:58
Thank you for your help. I will run it by her. Having one a game was helpful. She really enjoys the teaming up with each other to decide the best course of action, too. I think she will enjoy the game the more we play.

Thank you. Have a blessed Christmas.
Scott
      
scottd
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 02 January 2008 02:32
Update on our family play of SoC,

Game 3 is in the books. Camelot saved again (2 for 3). Four of us played again. Most importantly, my wife is enjoying the game better and she won the decisive quest at the Grail. With Heroism on that quest it put at 8 swords to complete the round table.

Next up, enter the Traitor. I think I would like to have 5 or 6 when we introduce the Traitor. Any thoughts on the number of players that make the Traitor most fun?

Thank you,
Scott
      
rdhight
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 02 January 2008 12:25
scottd wrote on Tue, 01 January 2008 17:32

Any thoughts on the number of players that make the Traitor most fun?


Three to seven.
      
AK_Aramis
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Re:Is SoC our next choice Wed, 02 January 2008 12:52
scottd wrote on Tue, 01 January 2008 16:32

Any thoughts on the number of players that make the Traitor most fun?

Thank you,
Scott


5-7.

With three, the traitor has to be REALLY subtle, 4 less so, but still...
      
    
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