In space no one can hear you scream, but Lord Eradikus will surely hear all that noise you’ve been making while snooping around his ship. All that clanking will summon his wrath, and your only hope is to run faster than your friends.
Clank in Space is a brilliantly fun board game that combines the strategy of a deckbuilding card game with a space-themed dungeon crawl. The recently released Apocalypse expansion adds new villainous schemes to thwart your heist plans even more, creating an always exciting and memorable race through the mother ship.
What started out as a goofy mashup of a handful of Nintendo characters having a What-If throw-down has spent the last two decades transforming into one of the most beloved, consistently excellent series on every Nintendo console since the Nintendo 64.
As the fifth game in the series Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is well deserving of its Ultimate title, featuring every fighter and stage from previous games while providing a solid balance of new and classic gameplay modes, though it’s still a series built for, and best enjoyed locally rather than online.
The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Phenomenal. It’s been a long time since a book started out rather ho-hum, and by the end I had to devour the last 50 pages in a single sitting, desperately wanting more. Jemisin created not just an intriguing retrofuture world of extreme, apocalyptic weather but also a rich culture surrounding the caste-bound humans who survive these Seasons, including those special humans who can feel the Earth and control it.
The setting is a delicious mixture of X-Men, Dragon Age, and even some Horizon Zero Dawn, yet it’s not derivative at all but feels like a natural evolution for sci-fi/fantasy. And the multiple POV features some incredibly rewarding and satisfying twists, including a very bold second person narration. Highly recommended and I cannot wait to read the rest of the trilogy.
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Pokémon GO’s incredible popularity on mobile phones introduced a whole new audience to the already stalwart Pokémon franchise. The Pokémon Company has leveraged that popularity for Pokémon: Let’s Go, Pikachu! and Let’s Go, Eevee!.
On the surface the Let’s Go games are glossy, 3D remakes of the first generation of Pokémon (Red/Blue/Yellow) with the much simpler Pokéball throwing mechanics borrowed from Pokémon GO. Despite its relative simplicity compared to recent mainline games like Sun and Moon, Let’s Go includes several brilliant new features that make journeying through Kanto again rewarding and memorable.
My recap and review of The Walking Dead S9 Episode 5 “What Comes After.”
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Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Even a mediocre Discworld book is still pretty good. In the Discworld series, the Moist von Lipwig books are solidly at the bottom. They’re as much about the city of Ankh-Morpok and the steady march of progress as anything else, and Raising Steam is no exception, with the invention of the locomotion. Unfortunately a good chunk of the novel is spent on a wider lens look at the city, the inventors, and the Patricians’ machinations.
I do adore the Patrician but it’s mostly a snooze-fest, and I never did care about the locomotion pair of Dick and Harry, whom we spend a lot of time with.
The final third of the book picks up steam (sorry) into a nice little ending, and I did love the inclusion of Commander Vimes and the City Watch as supporting characters.
Note that although it’s a Moist book, the surrounding plot is a sequel to the Troll-Dwarf war story in Thud!, nearly making it required reading to know what’s going on. Of course, you’ve already read all the Discworld books, right?
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In Megaland players explore video game levels fraught with enemies but filled with treasure. If they survive they can use that treasure to purchase buildings and earn victory points.
Megaland plays quickly and easily and features beautiful artwork by Red Raven Games designer and illustrator Ryan Laukat. The gameplay provides a solid, family-friendly introduction into more advanced board game concepts such as set collection, resource management, and risk assessment.