"There is no way I will ever actually play one of these goddamn games, I am just painting the models" That is what I said when I started painting some table top gaming minatures with a friend at work. You can probably guess that I did eventually play one of those games and that game was Chronopia. Sitting round on a Sunday afternoon drinking beer (hrm ... reading this over I have noticed many of my gaming experiences involve beer) and playing a table top wargame is a lot of fun. Chronopia had a great, if somewhat depressing, background and an elegant, consistant combat system. Unfortunately later supplements to this game broke the balance that was there in the initial release. Since Target games has gone bust I guess I wont be playing this game again, but I have fond memories of it nevertheless.
My friends tell me that the table top fantasy football game Bloodbowl was some of the best gaming they had ever experienced. The fantasy football niche in the gaming comunity had high hopes for the computer version of this popular table top game. Unfortunely, their hopes were dashed when the disapointing computer version eventually came out. Stone Jackal Studios took the fantasy football concept and created something much better, Crush Deluxe. A simple premise, three teams search for a ball in 8 ball bins. Once the ball is found they struggle to carry it to the designated goal area. Players clash, are brutally injured and killed. Over time they gain experience and can learn new skills. Illegial equipment provides special abilities, but risk your player being sent off. A group of friends and I gather on Tuesday nights to play this simple yet compelling game. We may be the only people left in the world who still play, but we love it. Apparently someone who worked on Unreal loved it too, with the Slith monster and the kurgan skin (both races from the game) popping up in the first version of Unreal. I enjoy this game so much I reverse engineered the data format so we could get more stats than the basic ones that the game provides. The stats program I wrote can be downloaded here.