Let's Talk Board Games #7: 2-Player Games - hypernaturalgames.com

Let’s Talk Board Games #7: 2-Player Games

Before You Play
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Welcome to our seventh episode of “Let’s Talk Board Games,” where we discuss and review several 2 Player board games we’ve been playing.

00:00 – Abstract Academy
05:11 – Nanga Parbat
08:59 – Shobu
13:10 – Caper Europe
16:58 – War Chest

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  1. Awesome I play primarily 2 players so this is great!

  2. So happy you guys like Shobu, i also love it. But i will say that my copy came with less than stellar components. The boards dont even have any finish on them. My first boards came orange colored. I was able to get replacements when the next printing came.

  3. I love War Chest, and it's a brilliant tool for luring people into wargaming 🙂

  4. Caper: Europe and War Chest are fantastic!

  5. Canopy is a gorgeous, 2-player push your luck and set collection game with beautiful rain forest art by Dutrait

  6. Royal Visit has been a huge 2p hit in my family. Light and quick playing, but opportunities for clever play become more apparent as we play more. A 6-way tug of war!

  7. 2p games are enjoying the spotlight, thanks for opening my eyes to some of these!

  8. Thank you for the video. How does “Caper Europe” compare to Watergate?

  9. If you like war chest then maybe give undaunted a go (if you're ok with WWII theme) . It's from the same designers, it feels like sort of a refined version of war chest imo (and a lot faster). I haven't played others that you talked about in this video though I'd love to play caper. Here are some other 2p games that I adore though: targi, watergate, battle line, hanamikoji, blitzkrieg, caesar, summoner wars, war of the ring. I'd put curious cargo on the list cause it's so unique, but it's just a tad bit too fiddly and has some micro rules that are hard to remember for some reason. Great video guys, cheers!

  10. I love challenging abstract games and Shōbu seems to be right of my alley. Gotta convince my friends, though.
    I'd also love to grab a Caper Europe for sure. There are a few Keymaster games I wanna play out there.

  11. Unmatched is probably my go to 2 player game at the moment. Definitely want to try Shobu!

  12. I'm not too keen on abstract games, but I've had my eye on Shobu & War Chest. After hearing your reflections, I definitely want to try them both. Great video!

  13. Me and my wife have been playing some Caper Europe, and we really enjoy it. Short game, about 20-25min, with many tough decisions. We really like the tug of war aspect of the game, you usually can’t win all three locations so you need to decide which one(s) to go for. But even if you don’t win any or just one location, you can still win the game. Really enjoyable 😃

  14. Shobu is my favorite abstract game! Even beating Yinsh

  15. you should try Akrotiri. A superb game for 2p.

  16. Caper Europe is one of our favourites at the moment. As for other two player games, my wife and I consider Azul to be best as a head to head, and the new Queen's Garden is incredible as a head to head puzzler. Our favourite since the original.
    Someone else in comments mentioned Undaunted which is a fantastic head-to-head war themed game.

  17. Looking forward to Caper Europe being released here in Australia later this year. We love a 2 player tug of war game. Royal visit by Reiner Knizia is another good game in that genre.

  18. I've been waiting for yall to play War Chest… but I knew Naveen wouldn't like it because it's basically a deck builder.

  19. I'd love to see a Shobu playthrough if you would consider making one 🙂

  20. I'd definitely suggest giving war chest more time! Drafting is the only way to play though for sure. Don't know about the dictated set ups but with drafting I've never felt under powered only out played! I only mention this because if I were to make a top 5 the others would probably be A Feast for Odin', Gaia Project, Teotihuacan and maybe Inis maybe Roll for the Galaxy. Not sure. Anyway I think we have a lot of crossover in our tastes (after watching an absolute pile of your videos) and of all of them after easily 50 plays war chest is probably my no 1! 4 player game works brilliantly too. Shobu is also a favourite. Glad to see you tubey folks showing it off. Anyhoo keep up the good work. Love your channel. 🙂

  21. War Chest is one of my favourite 2p games. We do the random shuffle, and it's more fun trying to figure out the synergy of the units.

  22. I've played Nanga Parbat just yesterday, laid down in a park during Easter break. I brought the game and we both really enjoyed it! Dr. Finn's games are just perfect when I need a relaxing, but still engaging experience (Herbaceous being one of my favorites, with The Whatnot Cabinet as my top choice when playing with my family).
    Besides some 2-player classics (like Patchwork or Jaipur), "Jekyll vs. Hyde" is a more recent, trick-taking game I fell in love with. I'm usually not very keen on the genre, but I really like the asymmetry where a player (Jekyll) has to balance the number of tricks, while the other (Hyde) wants to bring chaos by taking either all or none of the tricks.
    Caper: Europe is in my wishlist from a while, hoping some publisher will bring it here in Italy 🤞

  23. Another two player specific one that was a nice surprise is Glasgow.

  24. I LOVE warchest, it's just so good, the mix of long term strategy with the bag building and the short term tactics of what to do with the coins you just drew just keeps me so engaged the whole time. And i love looking back at a game and thinking about how my armies plan changed, where early on maybe my knight was the prominent piece putting pressure on but eventually it takes too many hits and i have to pivot and now the crossbowman steps up finishes the game out. There's so much depth to it, it's definitely my favorite abstract strategy game

  25. So glad to see your reviews of these games. I've been really curious about three of them and now after your review you've saved me from picking them up. Caper was one I was really tempted by, but hearing that it doesn't really burn your brain was what I needed to hear, because that's what I'm looking for. Shobu looks so interesting, the only problem being that abstract games rarely come out with me even though I really enjoy them. Nanga Parbat looks great, but hearing that it feels a bit samey the more you play is definitely a killer for me. Thanks again!

  26. Omg Monique I will play War Chest with you, that is one of my fav games of all time

  27. Creeping me out with how similar your tastes seem to be to us with 2 player games! 😮

  28. Great video as always! Shobu is really amazing. What I tell people about abstracts is to love them for what they are. They SHOULD be deep decision space with simple rules and shorter game play. Not all abstracts are great…but many are. And it's nice when you don't have a lot of time or want to re-learn a game. One of the best series for this is the GIPF series. Kris Burm is a genius. Tzaar and Dvonn are just amazing. Yinsh is good but it makes my head hurt. I like them all except the hourglass one and maybe Punct.

  29. So did y'all like Parks? You seemed to think that it's super lightweight which surprised me. It's extremely accessible so can be played with anyone, but I love the level of depth there if you want to play that way.

  30. War Chest is one of the few games that feels designed as a 2 player, but surprisingly plays really well as a 4 player too!

  31. Onitama, Santorini, Land vs. Sea and Canopy are ones that have pleasantly hit our table. Picked up Shobu at Origins and have yet to play it. Now I gotta play it!

  32. Watergate is my favourite 2p game, a small game that leaves most big games in the dust.

  33. LOVE seeing 2p games get highlighted, as 90% of my plays are with my partner only.

    I'd love to see a list of favorites that you enjoy with each other that can play more, but work really well 2p.


  34. Always nice to learn more about 2-player games, perhaps this can be the start of a new game series on 2 players? Great to hear your thoughts on Caper Europe which I was really tempted to get but passed!

  35. If you like something about the idea of war chest, but would prefer it to be not quite so extremely asymmetrical, you could try any of the Undaunted games by the same designers. Those have a largish luck factor in the dice rolling, but still very interesting and different takes on deckbuilding / unit fighting.

  36. Abstract Academy: wow, someone made an actual game out of Aquarius!

  37. I absolutely LOVE war chest! It's a top 10 games of all time for me. The expansions for it are pretty good, especially the first one (nobility). Would gladly play with anyone in any place. In the beginning it can seem slow or "unbalanced" in certain combinations but once you play a lot you will discover a lot of new strategies and find ways to mitigate the luck. The only unit that is kinda meh in my opinion is the footman but even he can be useful in the endgame. Good review, it's assymetry variability and replayability is for sure so high as you said.

  38. War Chest is excellent!!! I'm honestly surprised it's not more popular because it's so easy to get to the table and it has tons of replayability, especially with the expansions!

  39. War Chest is excellent!!! I'm honestly surprised it's not more popular because it's so easy to get to the table and it has tons of replayability, especially with the expansions!

  40. I recently discovered Nanga Parbat on BGA and I really liked it!! Would love to get the physical game some day.

  41. I recently discovered Nanga Parbat on BGA and I really liked it!! Would love to get the physical game some day.

  42. I agree with you guys totally regarding those two starting factions in War Chest: one of them is a lot more powerful than the other, at least as far as "beginner" strategy goes.

    I find that the Units that prioritize movement are really powerful as people are learning the game. It's so easy to just grab up everything with the Light Cavalry while the other player is still setting up their bag and positioning their Units.

    In general I feel like the game seems very approachable and beginner friendly — and from a mechanics standpoint it is — but the actual strategy requires a lot of forethought. The bag building is very tight and new players can put themselves in extraordinarily precarious positions by not thinking about their chip economy.

    How do you guys feel about Undaunted (Normandy and North Africa) from the same designers?

  43. War Chest is a Top 10 game of mine. So good! That Abstract Academy game reminds me a little-known two-player game called Node that I bought at a GenCon one year. Similar in that you build out a map/grid with cards that have two different colors, but instead of scoring VP for certain things, you're trying to maintain area control. I love that one!

  44. Nice to see Nanga Parbat get some exposure. I agree with your review. I play it mostly with my daughter. It is a fun game and gets to the table once in a while. Biblios is better.

  45. Very interesting games, thank you for reviewing these! I'm under the impression that Nadeen prefers the games where he won, am I right? 😛

  46. Skulk Hollow is still my best 2 player game then Radlands. I also enjoy Caper Europe, but I don't like War Chest much (I also like undaunted 3 games better). At 4 we like Marshmallow Test a lot. We also like our mod: Blood Rage Lite.

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