Words by David C. Obenour
Gen Con | August 4-7, 2022 | Indiana Convention Center
The best four days in gaming needs more than just one post! So finish your meal from the food trucks, slip your mask on again, and head back into the exhibitor hall for part two of the games we played from Gen Con 2022.
Wonder Book (dV Games)
There are no limits to the adventures you can have inside a book. That’s never been more true than with Wonder Book, a portal to another world of magical wildernesses and dragons. Opening up the storybook gameboard, a tree pops up for your first “chapter” of cooperative fun. Five more chapters proceed, each with their own elements to add to the gameboard – cleverly hidden amidst the folds. Easily one of the most impressive games from the convention.
Haunt the House (KTBG)
Your spirit has been disturbed and now it is up to you to scare off these meddling ghost hunters. They aren’t easy marks though and each one has their own fears and phobias that will need to be exploited for your success. In Haunt the House, players choose to secretly or openly add scares to the hunters – working toward the correct combination. Once you’re fairly certain that’s been achieved it’s time to trigger the haunt by calling boo. Good spooky fun!
Sabotage (Fowers Games)
I can’t stand it. I know you planned it. And now you can set it straight with Sabotage! A team of villains are trying to destroy the world and a team of spies are trying to stop them. A clever use of components that include the game box, simultaneous hidden movements occur on both teams’ boards. Information is leaked, plots are hatched, tools are unlocked, deathrays are fired, dice are rolled, and a lot of fun is had in the seconds to midnight.
Atma (Meromorph Games)
On a world not so unlike our own, The Restless Zones promise freedom and opportunity for those who desire or need it. Though the lawlessness also means danger for your group of adventurers. A small company, Meromorph has been masterful at creating fascinating worlds for their past games that beg to be further explored. With Atma and its second season now on Kickstarter, it’s exciting to see them reach out into roleplaying games.
Evergreen (Horrible Guild)
From the creator of the beautiful and clever, Photosynthesis, your scope of growth expands beyond just the meadow for Evergreen. A game of planetary ecosystem building, players develop regions with forests, lakes, fields and more with a central consideration for the reach of sunlight. Pretty impressive work for under an hour of gaming!
Deranged (UltraPRO Entertainment)
Some of the most horrific monsters are those that we keep inside of us. Others are just, you know, literal horrific monsters lurking around in the shadows. In Deranged players cautiously work together to survive each other and the gothic horrors that surround them. Will you be able to leave the city uncursed? The action stays fresh and immersive with scenario-driven action and a modular board, to say nothing of the unpredictability of your fellow tainted adventurers!
Age of Comics (Lirius Games)
Action! Mayhem! Mystery! Cheap and not-as-good knockoffs! All the thrills of the golden age are waiting for you once you crack the seal Age of Comics. In this classic worker placement / economic styled game, players take on the role of publishers developing fanbases, circulating through the city’s newsstands, hiring creatives, and more. As we live through the latest renaissance in comics, Age of Comics is a fun and fascinating look back.
Flotsam Float (HABA)
The vastness of the ocean washes up trash and treasure on the beach everyday. In Flotsam Float, it’s up to you to balance large loads of flotsam and jetsom on your raft as you hop between your native islands. With a fun theme and clever and colorful components (the benchmark of most HABA games), Flotsam Float is great, light fun for all ages.
Surrealist Dinner Party (Resonym)
The surrealists are coming over again and this time everything must be perfect. And by perfect, you aren’t only referring to the food and drink you serve but where your guests are sat and the conversation, drama, and companionship that leads to. Surrealist Dinner Party is a clever and light exploration of some of the most clever and heaviest minds. Avant-garde yourself!
Look at The Stars (Bombyx)
Throughout history and around the world, we have starred up at the night sky – writing our own meaning and stories into the stars that surround us. In Look at The Stars, players create their own night sky constellations – connecting the expanses around planets and shooting stars. Star cards are drawn from three phased decks, representing the coming of dawn, and players simultaneously make their constellations. Remarkably clever and beautiful.
The Real Truth (Goliath)
Do you want to believe? A game inspired by and designed with the creators from “The Last Podcast on the Left,” The Real Truth seeks to explore and understand mysteries and conspiracies from around the globe. Packed with components, it seems that no two play-throughs will ever be the same, plus QR codes can lead you to podcast episodes full of more but-is-it-real-world context.
Soil. Lighting. Water. Repotting. More or less of any of that. Caring for houseplants can feel like a game – and in Verdant, it is! Arrange your plants and assorted items to create the most vibrant and comforting space possible. The movement of zen gaming continues to grow, which is fun in seeing designers and gamers celebrating the simple and quieter moments in life.
Primordial Secrets (GLHF Games)
The beings that control the vastness of cosmic creation are fickle and decadent forces. To win their favors, you must allow for them to indulge in their pleasures. Primordial Secrets finds players sending out obedient emissaries to these courts and ballrooms as you seek to gain influence and insight. Secrets and sacrifices, dancing and devouring, it’s time to see where the cards fall in this game of the highest stakes.
Why spend your time pulling the weeds? In Dandelions you can ride gentle breezes through clear blue skies as you find the most ideal setting to put down your roots. Roll your dice and float, puff, and gust your way to area-control. Another clever and light game from BoardGameTables.com – equally fun for young and young at heart gamers.
And that concludes the games we played at Gen Con 2022! Be sure to follow along for our regular gaming coverage and subscribe for free to our monthly Digital Zine to never miss an interview or feature!