Posts tagged ‘carcassonne’

Board Game Expansions – A Breath of Fresh Air

Author – Piper Kilpatrick

I have had several of my friends ask me why they should spend money on expansions that are produced for various board and card games. They suggest that if games required expansions then they weren’t that good to begin with. They also complain that expansions are just excuses for the publishers of the game to charge us more money for the same game.

I take the time to suggest to these people that they are incorrect on both accounts.

Remove Strategic Advantages

Firstly, there have been games when played so many times by so many people have exposed certain types of strategy or certain rules that allow for a specific advantage that is not obvious to the casual player who has only played a few times, but is exposed by high level players that have played many times. Expansions solve this issue cheaply by addressing an issue with the games design while at the same time providing a new way of approaching the game in general. Thus both the casual player and the advanced player are both given a benefit. The casual gamer simply has a new way to play while the advanced player is provided an entirely new system to learn.

Breathe New Life Into A Favorite

This is not the reason expansions are produced for the vast majority of games however. Most games are given an expansion as they grow in popularity. Games that have been around for a while and have become favorites with many players and can begin to feel stale. Players generally play most of the time with the same people, so the game frequently begins to feel the same each time it is played. An expansion provides the players a way to breathe fresh life into the game for a small financial demand rather than requiring the players to purchase a totally new game for a new gaming experience.

New Experience – Similar Rules

An expansion also allows the players to gain a new gaming experience without having to take the time to learn a totally new set of rules. Expansions by and large are simply tweaks to the base rule set of the game, thus allowing for players to spend more time playing and less time reading.

Lastly, most expansions are not developed at the initial production of the basic game. Usually collectable games are the only ones where expansions are developed at the same time the base game is.

Expansions are meant to provide gamers with a new gaming experience for an established game. This allows the gamer a cheap way to breathe new life into a game that might be gathering some dust.

For example, my wife and I have played Carcassonne for three years now. The game continues to bring great excitement every time we play it not only because the game is well designed and is the type of game that provides a different experience each time it’s played, but because many expansions have been produced for the game that allow us to change the way the game feels very quickly with very minimal financial requirement. Several expansions retail for just a few dollars, but when added to the game, it changes our strategy completely. If either of us fails to adapt to the new requirements the expansion places on the game then that person is guaranteed a loss. Each expansion only required three to five minutes of rule learning, but added months to the games enjoyment because we were able to bring a game back to the table that had begun to feel the same each time we played because we each have a style of play that comes out when we play.

Cheap and Inexpensive Entertainment is GOOD!

Expansions provide gamers a cheap way to breathe new life into games that are just collecting dust, and in this time of economic upheaval a cheap way to bring joy to your home is always a good thing!

What is your favorite core and expansion set? Let everyone know, so they invest wisely!

Here’s some of the bigger expandable games: Carcassonne, Catan, Zombies!!!, Munchkin, Killer Bunnies, and others….


April 16, 2009 at 2:34 am Leave a comment

New Carcassonne Board Game Video Review

I would like to share a video that was submitted to us as part of the Best Dang Points program.

Cory Duplantis has written several reveiw articles and presented us with this video.

Here is his review of the tile-laying game of Carcassonne. Check it out and feel free to leave any comments you want.

Thanks Cory! Enjoy your copy of Pandemic you earned!

Get your copy of Carcassonne here.

February 25, 2009 at 2:49 am Leave a comment

Rio Grande Games Strategy Board Game Video Posted

We have another video for you. This time, Gary introduces you to the wonderful world of European board games, brought to us by Rio Grande Games.

Some games highlighted in this video include Carcassonne, Puerto Rico, Thurn & Taxis, and Power Grid.

Other games published by Rio Grande, that are not discussed in this video include:

  • Race for the Galaxy
  • Dominion
  • Stone Age
  • A Castle for All Seasons

February 19, 2009 at 9:33 pm Leave a comment

New Board Game Bundle of the Month! Settlers, Carcassonne, and Puerto Rico

We wanted to let everyone know that we have decided to move towards a Board Game Bundle of the Month, rather than a single board game/card game.

This month, we are spotlighting the three core strategy board games that every gamer should own: Settlers of Catan, Carcassonne, and Puerto Rico.

Typically, this game bundle would be $70.00. But, because of the holiday season, and we know this would make someone an AWESOME gift, we are leaving it on sale through Dec. 31. The sale price is: $52.50. That averages less than $18.00 per game. If there ever was a time to get these three games, now is the time!

You can check out the bundle for yourself at Here is the bundle.

Happy Holidays!

November 24, 2008 at 4:02 am Leave a comment

Carcassonne and Puerto Rico Videos Uploaded

Today, we have uploaded our first two – of many – videos showing you different board games.

For these first two, we chose Carcassonne and Puerto Rico.

We have taken a slightly different approach to these videos than what is already out there. We decided to go with product shots that show off the great artwork of the box, the boards, the bits and pieces, and the instructions. There are plenty of videos out there by others who do a much better job of showing you how to play. No need to reinvent that wheel. We do want to provide you with enough information about what the game has to offer, what you might be dealing with regarding size and amounts of pieces, and how to set up a typical game. They are designed with no audio

This one is for Carcassone.

This one is for Puerto Rico.

Let us know what you think. Do you like it? Is it boring? does it meet a need to know what the games are without a lot of talking about rules and stuff.

June 28, 2008 at 2:18 am Leave a comment

Family Board Game Day at Half Off Books

We had our first showing of family board games at Half Off Books in Orange City, on Enterprise – just south of Saxon.

It was exciting for me to have a retail outlet I could bring our games to and share them with the public. Given this was my first attempt at a retail environment, I am not sure how to quantify success. We had one person come in and say “Hey! Settlers of Catan! I love that game! I played it with some friends a little while back and have never seen it again. I had no idea where to get it.” She obviously gave us her e-mail address so we could keep in touch with her.

We had two other couples ask us about some of the other games.

We had two tables set up with Settlers of Catan and Last Night On Earth out and visible.

We also had two tables set up with a bunch of our games out for people to see and look at. We had many open games, with the intent that if someone wanted to try them out, we would let them actually play the game – what better way to see if you like it, right?

We will be at the Altamonte Half Off Books, in Orlando, this Saturday, from 10 – 5. If you want to come out and join us and play a game or two, we would love to meet you.

To get to the Half Off Books in Altamonte Springs, get to the I-4 and SR 436 intersection. Get onto 436 and head west (away from the Altamonte Mall). There is a plaza on the right side, across from Rooms To Go and Popeye’s. They are in that plaza.

My friend, John was in attendance and assisting me with manning the tables. We got in a few games to make the day exciting. We played Last Night On Earth, Oregon, and Carcassonne. I won LNOE and Oregon, but he beat me at Carcassonne.

Everyone who comes out to meet us will receive a 10% off coupon for your next purchase from us at

If you live in Orlando, and want to play some games with us on Saturday, June 14, come out and play!

June 11, 2008 at 11:00 am 1 comment

North Orlando Family Board Game Club

For anyone in the North Orlando, Florida area, we are starting a monthly game day.

The Orlando areas we expect to pull from include (but are not limited to):

  • Longwood
  • Lake Mary
  • Sanford
  • Deltona
  • Debary
  • Deland
  • Orange City
  • Daytona

In looking at options in the general area, there seem to be two places to the southern part of town where people go to play – one over by Aloma, and another down off of Colonial. This is extremely inconvienient for those of us at the north end of town. So, I said “Hey, why don’t we try and set one up for the north end of town?”. And with that, I spoke to the Volusia County Library System.

The good folks at the Debary Library, on 17-92 have offered us a room to play board games on the last Saturday of the month. I have reserved the room for us for the next four months. I will expand it as long as gamers keep coming out to play.

Here is their contact information and address.

200 N. Charles R. Beall Blvd.
DeBary FL 32713
(386) 668-3835

The dates are:

  • May 31
  • June 28
  • July 26
  • August 30

The times for each Saturday are the same: 1:00 – 4:45. We have to be out and cleaned up by then because the library closes at 5:00 SHARP!

My plan is to use the first hour to teach folks how to play some new games and then the rest of the time, we can just roll it old school like.

I think it would be good for the first week, May 31, to teach the standard gateway games.

  • Settlers of Catan
  • Ticket to Ride
  • Carcassonne 

I have one copy of each game for the club to use. I also have Starcraft, Memoir 44, Shadows Over Camelot, Arkham Horror, and Last Night On Earth – The Zombie Game available for play. If you want to bring some of your own games, feel free.

If you plan to come out or have any questions, please RSVP to so we know to expect you. I am looking forward to meeting you and playing some games with you all. See you then.

By the way, if you are a local coffee shop/pizzaria/book store…or know of one that would like to sponsor the club, we can meet there at other times as well. Just contact us at the same e-mail and we can work it out.

May 11, 2008 at 9:21 pm 2 comments


Best Dang Games

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