Out Now: Smashing Edition

By Nick Vigdahl 13 Oct 2017 0

Hooray for Friday and hooray for new games. We've got a quartet of options to review including a new expansion for a game-of-the-year candidate, an augmented-reality word game, and a pair of super exciting tabletop to digital board games.

 

Age of Rivals (iOS Universal and Android) (Review)

Age of Rivals is one of the year's best games, offering a fun and compelling two-player civilization-building contest. Now, we get a free expansion to boot. The Conflict of Faith expansion brings 18 new cards, a new campaign, and 6 new challenge levels to conquer. There are also some gameplay changes to smooth the game out a bit, some card rebalancing, and the requisite bug fixes. You can check out all the changes here.

Waggle Words (iOS Universal)

When you think of augmented reality, a word game is probably not the first thing that comes to mind. Waggle Words is hoping to change that. It's a tile-based word-formation puzzle game that also sports an AR mode, making use of Apple's new ARKit functionality in iOS 11. The game play and mechanics are pretty good, if not innovative, and it is interesting playing in 3D, if not overly compelling. To my mind this is another example of using AR because it's there, not because it's a super good fit or adds much to the experience. AR mode can be toggled on and off and bear in mind you'll need a recent device in order for it to work.

Smash Up (iOS Universal and Android) - Full Review Incoming!

The digital edition of tabletop card battling game Smash Up is finally out and ready to play. Nomad Games has been working on it for some time and Asmodee Digital recently came into the picture to as Smash Up's digital publisher. The game offers nine playable factions, each with its own deck, and there's a lot of variety there. You can play as dinosaurs, zombies, pirates, ninjas, robots and more. Each faction has its own super flavorful special abilities on its cards. In each game players draft two of those factions into service and shuffle the decks together to create a super-powered deck with its own distinct play styles. The ability to mix and match factions brings a good amount of replay ability to the game based on how faction abilities combine with each other. Smash Up supports up to four players and you can take on other humans online or AI opponents in real-time battles. The game looks great and plays well so far.

Cottage Gardens (iOS Universal and Android) - Full Review Incoming!

Another big mobile board game out this week is Cottage Gardens, brought to us by DIGIDICED, the makers of the digital version of Terra Mystica. In Cottage Garden up to four players compete to build the best garden by purchasing plants from a common marketplace and slotting them into two garden plots Tetris style. You earn points based on filling all of the squares of your gardens and the challenge comes in figuring out how to best maximize your space, while competing with other gardeners for the most advantageous plants. Cottage Garden features solo play and a super welcome cross-platform asynchronous multiplayer. The game is fun with light strategy that won't bust your brain after a hard day of doing whatever it is that you do all day. Give it a look if you enjoy digital board games.

That's all for this week's round up for new releases. Seen anything else you liked? Played any of the above? Let us know in the comments!

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