Last weekend, Dave and I headed to the NEC to investigate UK Games Expo. UK Games Expo covers card, board, role-playing, miniature and family games, with tournaments, new games to investigate, plenty to buy, demonstration games and trade seminars.
I will admit to not being much of a table-top gamer (I play Firefly Fluxx and Cards Against Humanity and that’s about it). Dave, however, really is, so he was in his element. The hall was jam packed with stalls, a stark contract to the half empty Collectormania24 which was happening in the opposite hall. There was plenty to look at, even for me, with large displays of incredibly detailed dioramas and miniatures.
There was an enormous array of stalls on display, covering everything from foam padded bags to keep your game pieces safe in, to a table-top drinking game. The hall was full of people trying out new games, picking up some new game pieces and building a giant shopping list of games to buy in the future.
Dave was impressed by the prices on offer too. He was braced for prices to have been cranked up for the show, but we were pleased to find the opposite was true, with most of the developers offering lower prices than you usually see. This of course meant more X-Wing ships came home with us…
I left it to Dave to pick out the show highlights. He recommends you test out a few different games. Star Trek Ascendancy from Gale Force 9 is a board game of exploration, expansion and conflict between the United Federation of Planets, the Klingon Empire, and the Romulan Star Empire. The infinite combination planets and interstellar phenomena means the game you play is never quite the same twice, which means you can keep playing without getting bored. We were both impressed by Monolith’s Batman board game, which is about to hit Kickstarter. The games pieces are beautifully detailed, and we’re excited to hear more about this game as the crowd funding gets underway. Fantasy Flight Games were of course showing off their range of Star Wars games. Dave adores X-Wing, so we definitely suggest giving that a go (if you have patience; it’s a long game). You can also pick up Armada, Rebellion and Imperial Assault. Big Potato were showing off their usual array of slightly mad party games, including Bucket of Doom and Obama Llama.
We of course caught up with our friends at Temp Worker Assassins. Their artist, Adam, is based in Birmingham and is a friend of mine, so it was great to finally see the game in person after hearing all about. Temp Worker Assassins is a high-speed deck building game based in a weird office world, where the game is to overthrow the full-time employees. It looks truly bonkers in the best way. You can grab your copy here, from Amazon. Let me know what you think!
I’d definitely recommend UK Games Expo for table-top fans. There was SO much to see, and you’d be hard pressed not to come home with overflowing shopping bags, as even as I was tempted by some of the games being shown off.
We attended UK Games Expo 2017 as members of the press, with press passes. All opinions are honest and my own (or Dave’s).