Essen Day One: The Convention So Far, Plus the Morning Haul (Chris Wray)


A picture is worth a thousand words, so this will be a short post, mostly to update on what is hot so far at the convention.  I also crack open the 2016 DSP Goodie Box below.

By 10:30, the convention crowd was in full force.  While it is hard to tell what’s standing out — people haven’t had that much time to play the games — I do know what seems to be selling well.  Feuerland Spiele sold out of their English allotment of A Feast for Odin this morning, although Z-Man might still have some (I didn’t check).  Japon Brand’s games were as hot as ever (more on that tonight).  And Stronghold appears to be one of the most crowded booths, with several of its titles being high on people’s buy list.

We’ll know more once the Fairplay and BGG lists are posted, but as an initial prediction, I’d say that five of the hottest games (in alphabetical order) are: 7 Wonders Duel Pantheon, A Feast for Odin, Cottage Garden, Power Grid: The Card Game, and Terraforming Mars.  I also saw a lot of interest in The Colonists, Great Western Trail, Inis, Key to the City – London, Lorenzo il Magnifico, and Oracle of Delphi.  We’ll see how my prediction shape up.

Either way, I can already identify one designer and two publishers that are having an exceptionally good Essen.  Friedemann Friese has three games out (Power Grid: The Card Game, Fuji Flush, and Fabled Fruit), and all of them seem to be doing well.  I heard a lot of favorable chatter — some of which was based on actual plays — this morning about his games.  His company, 2F-Spiele, had quite the line.

And his English-language partner, Stronghold, is also doing remarkably well.  In addition to having Fuji Flush and Fabled Fruit, Stronghold also has Great Western Trail, Jórvík, La Granja: Dice Game – No Siesta!, Sola Fide: the Reformation, Terraforming Mars, and The Fog Of War, among others.  Stronghold has many hot titles, in part because of partnerships with German publishers that have titles with a lot of buzz.  The line this morning had to have been 75-people deep at one point.

The DSP Goodie Box (Spoilers Ahead)


The Deutscher Spielepreis “Goodie Box” is selling for 9 Euro.  I knew it had promos for Codenames, Isle of Skye, Mombasa, and T.I.M.E Stories.  Since I own those games, I decided to pick it up.  German and English rules are available for the promos inside.

Here’s what was inside (spoilers!):


Codenames: These are my favorite of the four promos.  I could only show a fraction of the available cards, but these are game names on one side and game designer names on the other.  A cool addition to Codenames for those of us that play a lot of games!


Isle of Skye: Some bonus tiles, which award bonus points based on what is adjacent.


Mombasa: Adds five new book tiles to the book tiles of the base game.  Plus, you a get a majority bonus space “bookkeeper,” which gives rewards in pounds if you have more bookkeepers than the other players (ties are sufficient).


T.I.M.E Stories: This beacon can only be used on the third run.  After entering a location, but before reading the “A” card, you can flip all cards, except those with state tokens or other special restrictions.

In my humble opinion, it was worth the 9 Euros!




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6 Responses to Essen Day One: The Convention So Far, Plus the Morning Haul (Chris Wray)

  1. Pingback: Essen Day One: The Convention So Far, Plus the Morning Haul (Chris Wray) -

  2. xitoliv says:

    Thanks, Chris. My first thought on seeing the DSP box in the photo was, “but tell us what’s inside!” And, well, then you did :)

  3. gamekahuna says:

    William Attila? He is the opposite of a Hun.

  4. huzonfirst says:

    That’s really funny. Poor William…

  5. Chris Wray says:

    The clue is: Typo, One.

  6. Pingback: Essen Day One: What’s Hot, Plus General Thoughts on Day One (Chris Wray) | The Opinionated Gamers

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