Steam Park

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

Steam Park

Steam Park is one of the latest games from Iello Games.  The object of the game is to build the best theme park and earn the most profit from the rides and stands you build throughout the park.

The components comprise of: 24 dice (6 for each player), 42 Visitors (7 for each of the 6 colors), 4 Starting Ground tiles, 20 Additional Ground tiles, 18 Rides (3 for each color and 6 in each size), 24 Stands (4 for each of the 6 kinds), 1 Turn Track, 4 Turn Order token, 1 Turn Counter, 4 Pig boards, Dirt tokens, 34 Bonus cards, 1 Cotton bag, 4 Reference cards, Banknotes for money, 1 Rule book

Play:  During each turn (6 turns total), all players roll their 6 dice and continue to roll them until they are satisfied with the results on each die.  The first player that stops rolling their die takes the 1st player Turn Token.  The second player who stops takes the next turn token, and so on.

On the 1st Token there two dirt removal icons which represent removing dirt from the player.  The 2nd token also has dirt removal.  The 3rd has none and the 4th gives dirt to the player.

Dirt is a BAD thing to have in the end!  For the amount of dirt you have at the end you will deduct some money based on the amount of dirt.  There is a Reference track for that payment.

Once players have finished rolling their dice, the 1st player will play his dice in any order to either build rides, build stands, get rid of dirt, play card(s) from their hand, try to gather people for the rides or be blank. They can also be used to help you expand your park for more space.

Once you have built rides you can try to get people for those rides to earn you cash each round.  Unfortunately these people also create Dirt in the park.  Remember to clean the dirt up or be penalized in the end.

Stands can earn you actions like:  Draw a new person from the bag, convert a die to another side of that same die, clean extra dirt, place a meeple of a different color on a ride (temporarily).

You will want to expand your park at some point because when you lay the rides down and the stands down they can not touch each other unless it’s the same colored ride touching each other or the same stand touching each other.  For instance, a Red 3 person ride can be upgraded by adding a red 2 Person or a red 1 Person ride to it.  You can not add for instance a blue ride to the red ride.

For each person you have in your park at the end of the round you score 3 money.  You can also earn money by some of the cards you play (but remember, you will need dice to play a card)

The winner in the end is the person who has the most money.

My Final Thoughts: I love the 3D aspect of the components that are used for rides and stands.  The dice could have been a little heavier (they are made out of wood), but that is not a deal breaker.  I think people who have been playing games for a while and even new folks to the hobby would really love to play this game.  It’s simple to teach and it does require some thinking at times to see how you can maximize your profits.  I would recommend this game to everyone!

I want to thank Iello Games for sending a review copy.  You can find out more about Iello Games at: 

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I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

MACE 2013


Mace 2013 is only a few more days away.  I will be headed there with a few of my friends from my local gaming store as well.

This year, I have committed to playing in a D&D 3.5 campaign on Friday night and learning Heroclix on Saturday Morning.

My friend Sean and I are also in a King Of Tokyo tournament on Saturday night.  Hoping to win some prizes from that tournament.

If you are headed to MACE 2013 stop me when you see me and say Hi!  I always love meeting new folks who have a love for gaming like I do.

If you stop me and let me know you saw this on I just may hand you some cool SWAG!  That’s just one way to get some SWAG.  There will be other opportunities during the weekend to win some as well.  Watch for a pick up game or two.



Newest Member of Meet The Meeples!


Meet the newest member to the MeetTheMeeples team, M.O.N.K.

Monk is a Planet Sock Monkey from Patch Products.  He keeps the jams coming to Meet The Meeples on a daily basis with his flashy style.  M.O.N.K. brings back some old school ideas with new flare!

There are several different Planet Sock Monkeys to choose from on the Patch Products site.  With the Christmas Season right around the corner, these items make great stocking stuffers for the kids in the family!  Some adults may even be proud to own them as well and bring back some great childhood memories of once owning a Sock Monkey when they were kids.  Planet Sock Monkeys retail for $21.99.

Thank you to Patch Products for sending M.O.N.K. to be part of the family!

Forbidden Desert


Forbidden Desert is a cooperative game played by up to 5 players.  The object is to get out of the desert before you get swallowed up by the mounds of sand that drift.

Components: 49 Cards, 48 Sand Markers, 24 Tiles, 6 Pawns, 5 Water Level Markers, 4 Flying Machine Parts, 1 Flying Machine Model, 1 Sandstorm Meter, 1 Sandstorm Meter Stand, 1 Sandstorm Meter Marker, Rulebook, Tin Box.

Open Box

One of the coolest features to this game, besides the awesome components inside, is the Tin Box that the game comes in.  This box is very similar to what Forbidden Island came in except square in shape.

The game is played by setting up the 24 Tiles by randomly shuffling them and laying them out in a 5X5 square with the middle area not containing a tile.  Then several of the sand markers are placed on the tiles (diagram is in the rulebook).


The players each get 4 actions they can take on their turn.  The first action is to move one direction to an adjacent tile.  The second action is they can remove a sand marker that is on their tile or an adjacent tile.  The third action is they can pick up a part for the flying machine.  The fourth action is they can excavate and flip a tile over.

Some of the tiles contain arrows either left to right or up to down.  Once both tile sets have been excavated you can place the part for the flying machine.  That part will always stay on that tile until a player picks it up on his turn.

After the 4 actions are taken, then cards are drawn to move tiles, put sand on them, or make you drink water.

Some of the tiles that are excavated also contain gear markers.  If you excavate one of them you also can draw a gear card which will help you during the game.

There are 3 ways the players can lose the game:  First, any one player runs out of water.  Second, if they run out of sand markers they are totally covered in sand and lose.  Third, the sandstorm meter reaches the skull which means they have run out of time.

Boat Parts

If players can get all the parts and get back to the Launchpad, they are able to put the flying ship together and fly off to safety wining the game.

This game is fun and allows players to help each other.  After all isn’t that what cooperation means?

Meet The Meeples would like to thank GameWright games for sending us a review copy.

MACE 2013


This will be my 3rd year attending MACE.  The first year I attended it was in High Point NC and the convention was awesome, but the facility was not that great.  Last year they moved MACE to the Charlotte NC region.  I think this was a good move for the whole gaming community.  Last year it seemed like some of my friends from the Raleigh Durham area did not make it to MACE because it was a little farther to drive and they really wanted to make sure that the new venue was a good choice.  I’m encouraging them all to go this year.  I had a blast and the facility was top notch!

Although this convention may not be as big as a Origins or GenCon, it still shines as a staple for the Carolinas.

While at MACE this year I intend to give away a couple Eagle/Gryphon Games that have come out this year.  Anyone who is attending MACE will be eligible to win these games.  On Saturday, I’ll be wearing my Eagle/Gryphon Wingman shirt and if you see me stop by and say hi and get entered to win one of the games. The gams are: Salmon Run and I’m The Boss – The Card Game.  I’ll also have a couple demo copies with me to show you the game.

I hope to see you at MACE, if you are going please stop me and say Hi!

New Games In My Arsenal!

While on a family vacation in Upstate NY (Specifically the Syracuse NY region) my wife was kind enough to take me to “Play The Game Read The Story“, a gaming store.  One of the games that I was thinking of seeing if they had in stock was Las Vegas.

Las VegasThis game can be played by 2 to 5 players.  The game starts out by revealing cards that have money amounts on them for each of the 6 casinos (Represented by Dice Pips).  For each casino you reveal money until you have at least $50,000 then you stop and move on to the next casino until all casino’s have been populated with money cards.  Then each player in turn rolls all their dice and selects a number of dice that have the same number of pips, for instance all dice that have 3 pips on them and they take those dice and pace them on that casino.  Then when it comes back to the player again they do the same rolling and placing again until all their dice have been placed.

Once all the dice are placed the player who has majority on a casino wins the top amount card of value 2nd place gets the next one and so on until their are no more cards left.  In the case where players tie each other on a casino for the number of dice they placed, their dice are removed and they score nothing for that casino.

The play continues for four rounds and then the players will tally all their money cards and whoever has the most is the winner.

This is a push your luck dice game and plays in less than 30 minutes.

Another game I picked up was Unexploded Cow.

Unexploded Cow

The game is played where players draw 2 cards at the beginning of their turn and then they can play any or all of their cards in that turn.  Players place cows on herds on the board.  If they play a cow into their own herd they pay the amount shown on the left of the card.  If they play a cow in someone elses herd that player must pay the amount for the cow.

Next the player rolls the dice and counts from the right hand side of their herd to the right.  This may continue counting into another players herd.  That cow then explodes and pays out to the owner of that herd.  If a cow in your own herd explodes on your turn you also get the price that the cow pays plus a City card from the middle which has additional benefits.

Every time a 6 is rolled, the dice pass to the next player and another roll is thrown on the dice and continues unless a 6 is rolled again which means the dice is passed again.  You get the picture.

At the end of the city cards being gathered, there is a sudden death mode.  Each player rolls the dice on their turn and collects or pays out money to the pot for cows exploded.

So those are two new games that came home with me.  When I returned home I had a box waiting for me with a game that I traded for: Ra – The Dice Game.

Ra The Dice Game

Right now I am not going to tell you much about this game except this was a great trade.  I’ll tell you more about the game in another post in the future.

Gaming Podcasts Galore!


I listen to a lot of different Podcasts when I can get time.  Some of my favorite are Board Game related or Video Game related.

So, I thought I would share some of the links to just a few of my favorite podcasts, and a little blurb about each one.

Board Game related:

Exploring Games with GamerChris - In this podcast, Chris Norwood AKA: GamerChris, talks about different games he has played recently.  He also puts in a audio review of a game or two and gives his opinion on the games that have been played.  I tend to favor this one a lot since Chris is in a local gaming group in Burlington NC with myself and several others.

The State Of Games - This podcast is put out by Chris Kirkman AKA: DiceHateMe.  Chris is also relatively local to my area.  He lives in Durham NC and hangs out with another bunch of great gamers in that area.  Occasionally he makes it up to our local store and games with all of us as well.  His podcast usually tends to focus on a couple games, some of which may be what his rather new publishing company DiceHateMe Games has published.  He also talks a lot about unpublished games that he and the gang of played lately.

Garrett’s Games and Geekiness - Doug and Shelley Garrett talk about 2-3 games per episode.  They do a great job of talking about some of the game mechanics as well as do a good job of telling us what they actually thought about the game.

Video Game related:

The Married Gamers – Chris and Kelly Brown talk about video games, mainly on the XBOX 360 and PS3 related side, although Nintendo is mentioned every now and then.  Chris tends to be a more “Hard Core” Gamer while Kelly plays some Hard Core as well as more general types of Video Games.  They bring this podcast to all of us from a “Married” point of view and how it relates to “Married Couples” playing video games together.

Some Other Castle – Elaine and Leah do a great job of telling us what they really think of video games.  Warning: Language can be at a rated R level in this podcast, so this is only recommended for mature audiences.  These two ladies talk a lot about XBOX 360 and PS3 games as well and throw in some 3DS/DSi and Nintendo games as well.  They are funny to listen to and have been in and out of the podcast world for the last couple years, but it’s good to finally have them back again.

GoNintendo – I hope you guessed it by the name of the podcast.  Yes, folks this podcast is all about Nintendo.  Every once in a blue moon one of the other systems gets mentioned, but these folks try to keep it real for all of us Nintendo fans!  Thank you!

Snackbar Games – This group of folks has a mixed bag of game styles (board games and video games).  I personally know two of the guys on this podcast (Chris Ingersoll and Graham Russell) and love the way they all express their love for Nintendo games as well.

I’m sure as the console wars tend to heat up in the next year with the new systems coming out I will probably add a PS4 style podcast in my top listening.  The only thing is I have a lot more on my list and have to start weeding them out because there are only a certain amount of listening hours a week I have available and with the number of podcasts on my list I tend to not hit them all on a regular basis.

Anyway, I hope this gives you a variety of podcasts to listen to on your travels or if you are just relaxing.  If you ever get a chance to let them know where you heard about them, please mention that you heard about it here at  I thank you in advance!