Author Archives: fordsc

TIME Stories, a New Game Every Time!

Last week in class we played TIME Stories, an adventure game where teams work together to solve a certain mission. There are several different missions that can be purchased for TIME Stories, and each one is set in a different location with a different theme (we played the asylum mission in class). Each mission is filled with secrets and challenges, so the replay value is extremely low once you complete an individual mission, however there are TONS of missions to buy so you have a lot of play-throughs at your disposal. I’ve never played a game like this before, and it’s actually become one of my favorites of the semester.

The hardest part of the game was trying to discern what information was valuable and what information was trying to throw you off your mission. Certain entry points require a lot of time to pass through and end up being a complete waste of your team’s resources. Also, you lose all of your progression upon failing the mission (depending on various conditions), and it’s tough to remember how you got to where you were, where you got certain items, etc. This made the game extremely challenging, however it was rewarding as you cracked puzzles and made positive advancements in the mission.

Leadership was a huge element of playing TIME Stories. Each turn, there’s a captain who ultimately makes decisions and does dice rolls. He/She must be able to listen to their team’s ideas, as well as be confident in their actions. The group has the same goal, and with so many options available to your team, someone HAS to step up and facilitate decision making if you want to win.

I think my brother would absolutely love TIME Stories. He’s a huge fan of story telling and strategic gameplay, which TIME Stories revolves around.

How “Two Rooms and a Boom” Creates Obvious Leaders and Followers

This week in class, we played an awesome hidden role game called Two Rooms and a Boom, where there are two teams (red and blue) with two different objectives. There are also “gray” players who have individual objectives to win the game, regardless of the outcome of the red/blue battle. People are split into different rooms, and then given a random card designating their team and special role, if any. On the red team there is a bomber, and on the blue team there is a president. A leader is chosen in each room, who decides which hostages to trade with the other room’s leader every round. At the end of the game, the red team wants the bomber to be in the same room as the president, and the blue team does not want this to happen.

Right off the bat, we are naming people “leader” and giving them ultimate control of the current state of the game. It was interesting to see which people jumped to the front and requested to be leader, and how others wanted to stay in the back. Someone with a dominant role like President or Bomber may want to be in control because they are important pieces to the team’s objective. However, some roles (particularly gray players) require you to be a little more relaxed and not running too much of the game. For example, I was a gray Romeo character, where at the end of the game I want to be in the same room as Juliet and the bomber. I honestly didn’t care how the red vs blue war turned out, so I offered to be more of a supporter for whatever team tried to help me. The game is interesting from that perspective, because you are not an active decision maker. I was much more of a follower, while the leader of the room was directly trying to influence the game to meet his/her objective.

The hardest part of Two Rooms and a Boom was completing your task without making it obvious as to which role you were playing. If the leader was on the red team, he clearly wants the bomber to find the president, but can’t make that super obvious or the blue players in the room will elect a new leader. Hidden role games are extremely difficult in this regard, and require extra strategy and communication skills between players. While this is difficult, it is also one of my favorite parts of this genre of game because of the creativity involved in achieving your objective.

My friend Ryan would absolutely love this game. He’s huge into hidden role games, and this one adds just an extra element of immersion by physically being in different rooms and swapping hostages. If possible, I really want to find out a way to play this with a group of friends in my apartment sometime, because it’s so much fun. Definitely my favorite game we’ve played so far.