Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Heroclix, possibly the ultimate beer and pretzels game

We had all the fixings of a great evening last weekend: beer, ribs cooking in the oven, potato salad in the refrigerator — and 300 assorted Heroclix figures, kindly donated by my friend Bob.

I had invited six friends (a mix of tabletop and console gamers) over to feast on ribs and play Heroclix into the wee hours. I had to get rid of those Heroclix, and fast — the boxes and bags were piled all over my man room, so the idea was that I would let the players comb over the figures and put together an assortment of heroes and villains, which they would then take home and keep.

Anyway, the night was a rousing success. Four of the players had never played Heroclix before (which for the uninitiated is the click-base miniatures game from WizKids). You play the game on a grid map, and each character has a "combat dial" representing various super powers, most of which make perfect sense from a comics perspective. For example, Wolverine has a claws, Rhino can charge into combat, and Hulk gets more powerful as he takes damage.

The games were great, with a lot of the zany, laugh-out-loud moments I remember from playing Heroclix in college. It's a simple game with a lot of depth; all the different powers mean that it's possible to chain up various effects in the game. Plus there are objects on the board that you can use to smash other characters (like the classic example last weekend of Rhino smashing Beta Ray Bill with a dumpster, ouch).

I used to play Heroclix a lot in college (and a lot of my buddies were even more "into" the game than me, often playing in weekly tournaments for prizes, etc). Since I moved to Chicago it's become just one of the games on my shelf when we get together for game nights. But now that I've successfully distributed Bob's old collection, I'm expecting to play a lot more frequently this summer.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

[Chicagoland gamers] Unload your leftover stuff at the Warchest

I just got wind of a miniatures swap meet that's going down June 12 at Trinity College in Deerfield, Ill., just outside Chicago. Check out the details here. Admission is free, and if you happen to be a wargamer with a basement full of stuff to sell, you can rent a table for $20 and sell your wares all day long.

I'll stop by to browse — not that I need any more miniatures or anything.