Sunday, 28 October 2007

Now the Long Winter Nights are closing in....

How about gathering round with your friends/family to play some boardgames ?
My Family have dozens but this Christmas we're going for an all-out blitz because in spite of all the video games and dvds we possess ; the most fun we have is playing boardgames !
Over the next few days I'll give some recommendations:

'Wizards' from Avalon Hill is a very long 'race against time' fantasy boardgame. The playing area is composed of snowflake-shaped magical/elven/common tiles so the game is different every time it's played. The plot is quite intriguing - One of the seven high wizards is a traitor and seeks to destroy the land - but the identity of the wizard is unknown to all - you are a young apprentice who must train to be either a wizard, sorcerer or druid and gain experience by performing many tasks/epic quests across the land ; in order to prove your worth to begin the quest to find the hidden wizards , collect their gemstones and place them upon the druid stones to thwart the demons invading the land . Sound tough enough ? Well the enemy wizard has sent his demons out to thwart your quest - unless enough tasks are completed every fourteen turns; one of the land tiles is destroyed by demons !! Not only that once you have spent hours and travelled many hundreds of miles performing dozens of quests and received some gemstones from their respective wizards - the few remaining wizards must be encountered and one of them is the evil wizard who will steal all your gemstones and your hunt for the stones must begin again !! It's a really fantastic game to play if you have a long afternoon ahead of you. It's virtually nothing to look at, merely pieces of cardboard , but a lot of time and energy was spent composing the variety of tasks and events within the game - Imagination is at the heart of it all....Copies are extremely hard to find and expensive due to its rarity [looked on ebay and it's £50 !!! [My ex-Landlord stole my first copy and Nicky threw out our second copy because she thought the box contents were a bit messy ???!!]

But Miracles do Happen and Some Angel of the World Wide Web has made a downloadable version of it for Java 1.4 at

- A great thing about this game is that this can be played by one person just as easily as by a family !!! {n.b One thing I would recommend is that if you do play the computer version, change the tasks required to thwart the demons from 10 to '2 per person' - it makes the game a little more 'fair'}

Seriously lose yourself in a fantasy world for a few hours : Visit the witch and claim your reward,escape from the dragon's lair, climb the mountains and encounter the three high sorcerers - run for your life while the demons destroy the land from beneath your feet !

What's more - it sure beats an hour of watching 'Deal or no Deal'

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