Snakes & Blogs
2013-03 ‹ By Month
From Colin, one of our game gurus, a highlight of a game that might not see as much love as it deserves. Hidden gem, Quo Vadis?
Long before Kakerlakenpoker and Skull & Roses were facilitating bad behaviour between friends, there was Quo Vadis?. The principal of the game is very simple: negotiate your way through the Roman Senate to collect as many laurels as possible. However, your game pieces (the members of your powerful political family) move across the board only with the assistance of your opponents’ voting power, so try to avoid offending your friends at the outset. (There will be plenty of time for social bridge-burning later on.)
Your turn is simple: you add one of your politician’s to the board; you move one of your politician’s up the board towards the Inner Sanctum; you move Caesar himself. The board is broken up into a number of committees, which only have so many spaces for the ambitious politicians climbing the Roman political ladder. However, since you need a majority of votes from your current committee to move forward to the next committee, you will have to spend much of the game harnessing the raw, unbridled power of your silver tongue.
Quo Vadis? is a mean game. I have been excommunicated from several game nights for my psychologically abusive behaviour during this game. If there is a shred of decency left in your still-beating heart, beware; this game punishes decency and crushes timidity. But if our gurus have taught you Cards Against Humanity, Kakerlakenpoker and Skull & Roses and still you ask for more, try Quo Vadis?.
 Snakes & Lattes is not liable for you having to take a taxi home after you alienate all of your friends that drove here; Snakes & Lattes is further indemnified from all emotional damages arising from the playing Quo Vaids?. Enjoy responsibly!
From Colin, one of our game gurus!
Here’s the thing: I love monsters, I love ghosts, I love card games and I love adorable artwork. So, when we saw Ghooost! on display at February’s New York Toy Fair, I was entranced: the man who created King of Tokyo and Magic: The Gathering has designed an adorably macabre card game with the cutest artwork I’ve seen in ages. When I clumsily asked the iello’s booth reps if I could take a copy with me for the café, it was with regret that they told me they had only display copies for the show. My devastation that day has given way to joy, for Ghooost! has finally arrived at the café!
The game’s mechanics are simple: play a card(s) of the same value from your hand to the Cemetery (read: discard pile) provided they are equal to or greater than the value of the top card. If you can’t, draw the Cemetery into your hand. Each player has their own Mansion (read: separate mini-deck dealt to each player at beginning of game) which they cannot touch until the second phase of the game. Empty your Mansion and hand first, and you win the round! It seems like the first round is build up for the second, gathering good card combinations to help drain your Mansion; some of the strategies are less apparent in a two-player game, but Ghooost! strikes a nice balance between strategy and luck (as all good card games should).
The artwork is adorable and its teach is straight-forward (which means I’ll be pushing it on all of the game gurus). For all of my praise, I cannot rightly say that it’s very innovative (not until I play it a dozen more times), but the game is one of the most charming additions to our collection in recent memory. If you want something light and fast to get your game night started, Ghooost! will make a fantastic addition to your collection.