Thursday 26 February 2009

Games Night: Tannhauser


Tannhauser, from Fantasy Flight Games, is a an alternative World War II (Weird War II) board game that pits an American elite team against a supernatural band of Nazis (including demonically possessed fighters and zombie troopers amongst others).

Jeff bought Tannhauser when it was first released in 2007. We played it once or twice and were generally very disappointed. Firstly the artwork, although generally gorgeous, was very dark and made the various routes through the board very difficult to work out and it became a real eye strain in less than perfect light! After we got over that there was the game play, which seemed less than fantastic. We played a straight scenario with each team out to destroy the other team, and I think that this may well have been the main problem!

Last night Jeff brought Tannhauser over again, so that we could give it one last try before he consigned it to Ebay! This time we used a scenario where each team was out to retrieve 2 (or possibly 3) objectives. You score victory points for taking out opposing forces and also for collecting the objectives. The game ends when one of the teams gets it’s second primary objective, and then the victory points are totalled up.


Using the scenario made a huge difference to the enjoyment of the game. Taking the primary focus away from killing enemy forces and on to protecting your main figures while they retrieve the objectives made the game far more fun and left us all feeling that we wanted to play it again, probably in the near future.

So, the evenings discussions slowly evolved from how much should it be listed on Ebay for, around to what new expansion packs have been released for the game and would picking up the new Russian troops be worthwhile. All in all a successful evenings gaming!

The game itself is not perfect and certainly needs some commitment from the player to get to grips with the system. Grenades for example seem very weak and difficult to use.

However, we decided to try it again in the near future and re all looking forward to playing it!

Thursday 12 February 2009

Games Night: Battle for the Galaxy Zylatron

Our weekly games night was called off last night due to more snow, so I am finally getting around to documenting our last session, which I had forgotten to post about!

I picked up what looked like an interesting board game from Ebay some time ago and this has been the first chance we have actually had to try it. Battle For The Galaxy: Zylatron, is basically a space combat and conquest game, it is quite abstract and the “galaxy” in question only consists of 5 planets and 4 moons!


Photo from

The basic game-play consists of taking control of the central planet and then attempting to capture your opponents planets. The object of the game, is to eliminate your opponents and totally dominate the galaxy.

I must admit we had several problems with this game. When opponents destroy your ships and troopers, the replacement cost seems excessively high compare to the ability to earn cash in the game. We found that due to the fairly easy destruction of resources and the high cost of replacement we spent far to much time simply trying to rebuild our fleets and over the evening we made virtually no progress towards the ultimate objective of dominating the galaxy.

The game itself seems to have real possibilities, and we have determined that with a reduction in the costs of replacement ships it could work very well. I think we will probably give it another go, with revised ship costs and see if it improves the overall game-play!

Overall the quality of the board and playing pieces is quite nice, especially considering that this is a fairly old game! The only real problem with this is the hex/triangular pattern on the board, which can be confusing and was not the easiest system to navigate by!

I will report back when we have had another chance to play and hopefully I will be able to say we have successfully improved the game!

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