Mark Johnson's occasional & opinionated podcast about family strategy boardgames

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

BGTG 61 - Aug 2, 2006 - Friendly, Local Game Stores

Whew! Finally a new show. Like the last time I (unintentionally) took a little time off from the podcast, it was a little hard to get back into the swing of things. Last time I thought a simpler Session Report and Feedback show was the way to get back into the podcasting groove, but this time I wanted to try a theme show. That's because I'd been hearing the excellent series hosted by Eric Burgess on his Boardgame Babylon podcast, one he calls the "Demise & Rise of the FLGS."

You'll hear from this episode of BGTG that I don't share the same feelings about game stores. Not that I have anything against them, it's just that I don't find that they provide much of a service that I need. At least, not today. It was different when I was in high school, when the only way to even discover new games--let alone buy them--was to go to a game store. But that was a long time ago, and the business side of the hobby has changed. Sure seems that way to me, anyway.


Join me for PBW Hacienda

I've been playing play-by-web Hacienda for a while on They even just started offering alternate maps (at least one). But now also has Hacienda, and I like their game manager interface much better. For one thing, I'm able to create password-protected games just for my podcast listeners! You know the drill . . . go to the site, look for a game with Boardgames To Go in the title, and always use BGTG as the password. I haven't played this game on their site yet, so I don't know the interface. But everything Mikael and his developers put up at SpielByWeb is very slick, so I'm confident it'll work well.

I went with the asymmetric map, the one I believe is included on the backside of the board in the published game. There are other options to upload custom maps made with the Westpark Gamers' map generator program. So, lots of good opportunities to try this game under better conditions. You heard in my last podcast how I've been disappointed with Hacienda, but maybe these new maps will make a big difference.

The game options on the website offer a score-as-you-go variant (which I picked), and an alternate market scoring variant (which I avoided).


P.S. I wrote a show outline for the next podcast last night. A new recording is coming soon, honest! :-)