Knizia is Back With A New Game from Fantasy Flight

25 02 2014

ageofwarcoverOkay, Knizia’s been working on some things–mostly iOS implementations of his games. But he used to come out with games all the time. And he’s designed some absolute classics. So it’s super exciting to hear about a new game from the Doctor!

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Blue Moon is Coming Back in Print!

29 08 2013

BlueMoonLegendsBy Firestone

This is seriously good news, folks. Back in 2004, designer Reiner Knizia came out with what was really the first LCG: Blue Moon. It and the expansion decks slowly went out of print, and they were recently fetching big bucks on the secondary market. That’s all about to change…

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Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation: The Reprint!

9 05 2013

by Firestone


Good news, fans of awesome 2-player games! Fantasy Flight just announced that they’re reprinting the Reiner Knizia game Lord of the Rings: The Confrontation. I talked about this game way back in August when Jeremiah and I posted about our favorite 2-player games. I lamented the fact that it was out-of-print, but it’s coming back later this year!

LotRBoardIt’s similar to Stratego, in that you have pieces that only face you, so your opponent’s not sure who’s who. Each piece is a character, and each character has special abilities. The good guys are trying to get Frodo across the board to Mordor, and the bad guys are trying to kill Frodo. Superb game.

Here are the differences in the new edition—from the press release:

  • The rulebook contains additional clarifications to make the game even more accessible and easy to play.
  • This compact new edition features bridge-sized cards, as well as scaled down character stands and tiles, with new character cards to serve as reminders of character abilities. The game board now has visual reminders, such as character limit indicators and darker mountain borders, to help clarify play.
  • It features stunning new artwork for variant game Fellowship characters, as well as for several cards.

I don’t particularly like the fact that the tiles won’t have the special power text on them anymore, but at least you’ll be able to play the game again! Save some money in the budget for this one—or add it to your Christmas list.

Thanks for reading! And please, check us out on Facebook and Twitter.

What You Missed…

22 02 2013

ArcticAnother Friday and another week over here at Theology Of Games. Here’s what you may have missed this week…

We started off the week with a bonus Kickstarter Weekly—the reprint of the great 2-player race game Odin’s Ravens.

Then we had one of our Double-Take Reviews, for the fun family game Cheeky Monkey.

Then we had some news about:

And finally, our regular Kickstarter Weekly was The Card Game of OZ.

Thanks for reading, and we’ll see you next week!

Why, You ‘Cheeky Monkey’—A Double Take Review

19 02 2013

IMG_0867 We know how much you all love to hear the thoughts we both have on games, so here we go with another Double-Take Review!

This week’s lucky contestant is Reiner Knizia’s Cheeky Monkey, from Eagle and Gryphon Games.


  • 1 very adorable and VERY soft plush monkey (who is a double leg amputee and has had his abdominal cavity hollowed out in some sort of freak accident). This acts as the bag, from which you’ll be drawing chips.
  • 52 white plastic poker chip tokens
  • 1 sheet of animal stickers, which you’ll place on those poker chips.
  • 7 bonus tiles, which are large cardboard disks with animals (and the number of bonus VPs they’re worth) on one side, and facts about the animal and its habitat on the other.

IMG_0864Gameplay—Players simply take turns pulling tokens out of the abdominal cavity of the plush monkey, and placing the tokens in front of them. If a player draws a token that matches the top animal of any player’s stack, they get to capture that token as well and place it in front of them. If they draw a duplicate to one they’ve already pulled that turn, they lose everything they’ve gained that turn. If they decide to stop after drawing any number of tokens, they keep those tokens and place them in a single stack in any order they choose. Then play continues to the next player.

Going Cheeky—If a player draws a Monkey token, they can choose to “go cheeky” and take the topmost token of any player’s stack—exchanging the Monkey token for the chosen one.

The game is over when the last token has been drawn and stacked. The tokens are sorted by type, and each bonus token is awarded to the player with the most tokens of that type. Each regular token is worth 1 point, and the bonus tokens are worth their face value. The scores are totaled up and the highest score wins.

The exuberant 5-year-old shakes the monkey...

The exuberant 5-year-old shakes the monkey…

The rules have several scaled-down variations to help younger players learn and play the game—such as using no bonus tokens, or not being able to go cheeky. This is a nice way to get younger kids into the game, and then gradually introduce a new rule or two in subsequent games. (And there will be subsequent games…)

Jeremiah—When the package containing this game arrived and I pulled it out, my boys immediately wanted to play! The monkey “container” is cute and soft and looks great sitting on the shelf in my nerd room.

Firestone—That’s exactly what happened here, too. “Dad! Dad! What is that? It’s a GAME?! Can we play?”

Jeremiah—The downside of the components is the stickers! I was totally okay with having to put the animal stickers on the tokens; the problem was they didn’t come off of the paper cleanly or easily. So it took forever trying to peel the perfect circle of paper off of the back of the stickers.

Firestone—I have never felt as uncoordinated as when I tried getting those stickers off the sheet. It was like Andre the Giant trying to thread a needle while wearing mittens… But once I got the stickers off, they went on great, and I haven’t had any problems with them peeling.

Jeremiah—The game is pretty fun and has lots of teachable moments for younger kids. My youngest often gets very upset when someone takes his favorite animal from the top of his stack (which is often whatever animal is on the top of his stack!). So there are lots of “being gracious” and “good sport” talks that happen around that aspect of the game. Despite that, my boys both LOVE the game and think it’s really fun.

Firestone—My teachable moments involve learning when to press your luck, and when not to. “Son, you have all but one of the animals already on this turn. The chances of you drawing an elephant are slim…” He, of course, draws an elephant and I realize they haven’t learned A THING!

Jeremiah—The length of the game makes it the perfect kids filler game. Or the “we don’t have time to setup/play anything else right now” game, but they’re not getting cheated out of playing a great game. It just happens to be shorter, for those nights when bedtime is eminent.

Firestone—We (try to) have Family Game Night every Monday, but sometimes the evening gets away from us and we realize it’s nearly bedtime. Cheeky Monkey is the perfect length for a quick game—though if the kids are really pressing their luck, sometimes the game can get “stuck” for a little while.

This game gets a solid 7 from me—a great game that the kids love to play. The monkey bag gets a perfect 10, though. Overproduced, unnecessary, and completely wonderful.

Jeremiah – It may be hard to think that a game this simple has even simpler rules, but those scaled down rules made it super easy to teach my 4-year old the game. I told them when we started that there were other rules and when we finished the first game they immediately wanted to know the rest of the rules. When I explained the “Going Cheeky” rule, they both grinned ear-to-ear and my 4-year old exclaimed, “If I get a monkey, I’m going to go cheeky!”

I’m giving it a bump up to a 7.5—my boys really like this one…a lot. It’s totally a kids game that will never see the light of day with my gaming friends. And in the category of inexplicably disfigured but amazingly cute and cuddly plush animal containers, it scores an 11!

We’d like to thank Gryphon Games for providing a review copy of Cheeky Monkey, and you for reading! We would LOVE it if you liked us on FaceBook, and followed us on Twitter!

What You Missed…

18 01 2013

PandemicWe’ve got some great things coming up for the site—including some Best Of 2012 awards.

In the meantime, here are some posts from this week that you might have missed.

First we told you about a new, cheaper version of Reiner Knizia’s Ingenious from Fantasy Flight Games. And Jeremiah has already spotted one of these in his local Books-A-Million store.

Z-Man Games announced a new version of Pandemic. This will have a new art style, and two new roles. Check out the news, and designer Matt Leacock’s announcement video here.

We reviewed Asmodee’s fun, creative, family game Dixit.

We shared some news about 12 Realms being printed in Germany to save shipping for those across the pond.

Our Kickstarter Weekly was the new 4x space game Hegemonic.

And finally, Wizkids gave us some more details about The Lord of the Rings Dice Building Game.

Next week we’ll have a Double-Take Review of Mayfair’s Catan Jr. Thanks for reading!

Be Ingenious More Affordably…

14 01 2013

IngeniouscoverFantasy Flight Games has announced a “mass market edition” of Reiner Knizia’s award-winning abstract Ingenious. The game remains the same, but rather than the tiles being made of plastic, this edition will be made of punchboard. Also, rather than stands to hold the tiles, there are slots in the board that hold the tiles. Finally, the game comes in a smaller box that before. All of this means a cheaper MSRP, and an easier entry point for nongamers.

tilesI (Firestone) am not a huge fan of abstracts, but this is one of the few that hits a sweet spot for me. It has simple rules, but deep play. It’s fun and a challenge for both gamers and nongamers alike. Plus, it has the classic Knizia scoring where your final score is whatever your lowest color is at the end of the game—it’s fiendish and wonderful. This should be hitting shelves sometime in the next month or so. Check it out! And thanks for reading!

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