Escape: Stress of the Temple

Escape: Stress of the Temple

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Writer_smallerTaco Tuesdays

Gen Con this weekend means a couple of things. Firstly, it does mean a dip in traffic to our site as regular viewers instead enjoy a magical weekend of gaming – or just spending money on so many new games – and we stay at home and try not to be too jealous.

On the flip side, we do stay glued to Twitter mining a wealth of tweets to find what the most exciting new games turn out to be. While we will undoubtedly have to wait months to actually get our hands on them, it’s always fun to see what sells out, what gets people excited, and what hidden gems are unexpectedly uncovered.

As well as spending too much time on Twitter (and maybe Pokemon Go) over this weekend, we will finally have some time to play some games, as our schedules have at last aligned. Obviously, I’ll be hankering for some X-Wing, but also looking to maybe finally road test ‘And then we held hands’ or maybe ‘Tokaido’ or ‘Thunderbirds’, or any other game from our ever longer list of unplayed purchases. Who needs to go to a convention when we already have stacks of unplayed games at home?

I do actually love Escape: Curse of the Temple, but it has been known to cause stress, anxiety, broken friendships, confusion, sweating, swearing, game fatigue, dice hate, frustration, and existential dread. Other than that, I thoroughly recommend trying it. It’s only ten minutes long, and there is no turn structure. Everyone rolls their dice, moves around the board and shouts at everyone else to help them out. It’s a co-op game, but a more shouty, chaotic co-op than you might be familiar with. After a couple of plays, a group can get the hang of it and manage it with a lot less stress. It’s just convincing people to go again after the first time that can sometimes be the problem…

13 Comments on Escape: Stress of the Temple
  • Ben Thorp

    I really like Escape, but it doesn’t get to the table very often. (I also regret buying the Big Box edition, because I don’t reckon I’ll ever play the base game enough to move on to adding in the many expansions I now have)

    • We’ve played it a a couple of times with the ‘expansion’ that comes in the box -adding in curses. They’re really funny to play with, but you need a group that’s familiar with the game. And that’s getting increasingly harder for us to find as people become more and more reluctant to put themselves through that.
      Maybe we’re just getting old?

  • Dexter Ó Thuithear

    Amen on unplayed games. The stack at home grows ever taller, adding Guards! Guards! to it just last weekend. It’s rough to get a time when we’re both free and not way too fatigued to bother. Also been a long time since we’ve had people over to indulge in the 3+ player games (House on the Hill remains permanently neglected).

    GenCon brought the usual X-wing pre release sales, and I’m holding a small hope that there’ll be some for sale at UK Nationals next month. It’d really sweeten the trip over for the tournament to come back with some swag. Not sure how likely it is, but it is an event just for FFG games, hosted by their euro distributor, so… maybe? I don’t hold any hope of reaching top 8 out of 400, so a few early ships would be really nice.

    Speaking of shouty dice games, have you played Space Cadets: Dice Duel? It’s a ship v ship death match game, with each ship consisting of up to 5 crew. Each crew position (weapons, helm, engineering etc) has to roll dice to work through their actions in real time. All dice come from engineering, and all play stops momentarily when a torpedo attack is declared, building some fantastic tension. Well worth a look, and something that really deserves to be played with the full 10 if you get a chance.

    • Funny you should mention it, but Space Cadets is sitting in our unplayed games pile. Really, really excited to play it, but it feels like you would need a minimum of six to play, and as you see, it shines at even higher player counts.
      Even more exciting at Gencon was the Wave 10 announcement. Been wanting to see Kylo’s Shuttle since I saw Force Awakens. It’s such an evil looking ship. And Sabine’s TIE Fighter is such a fun ship to do. I love that the game now has something that silly in it. It’s a lot of fun.
      Good luck in the nationals! Really exciting that you’re going, I’m sure it’s going to be amazing. Have you decided on a list yet?

      • Dexter Ó Thuithear

        Space Cadets has remained unused since purchase. I played it once before buying it, with 6 players (we gave the tractor station to the weapons station I think). It’s great with just the 6, honestly, but more voices shouting always makes those games a bit more frenetic.

        Wave 10 caused a bit of a stir. A lot of people aren’t digging on the idea of aren’t stolen TIE, despite it apparently being canon. I think if they’d just included two pilots, it’d somehow have gone down better. There’s a lot of screaming about faction identity. Personally, I think Sabine with the title, Slicer Tools and an Intel Agent is a bargain PTL ace killer at 18 points. She’ll fit nicely into Dash lists. It might be enough to drag rebels back into competitive scenes.

        I have yet to settle on a list. Honestly, I may just run double defenders with Palp, or even two with Inquisitor. I’m not expecting to break out of Swiss realistically, so I’m just treating it as a bit of fun rather than serious business. Genuinely considered bringing a TAP swarm with proton rockets, just for giggles. Or four Bombers, because why not?

        • Sabine’s TIE was in Rebels, and it was a lot of fun there, and I admire FFG for bringing something like that into the game. With only unique pilots swarms will be impossible, so I imagine it will only ever be used as a ‘bargain’ ace killer, or for some other function in Rebel lists. And as someone else pointed out on Reddit, Rebels salvaging whatever ships they can and using them for whatever purposes they can is about the Most canon thing for Rebels.
          A TAP swarm would be a lot of fun, and it would definitely not be something people would expect. Speaking of that, the NA Nationals at Gen Con were packed full of unexpected lists. Top 8 only had 2 Imperials. The rest were Scum & Rebels, with no Dengaroo or Triple Jumps. There was a quad TLT list in there. I think a large part of the reason he did so well was because no-one was expecting, or prepared to go up against a list like that. It was a great top 8 to see, I hope there are some streams of the games up soon.

          • Dexter Ó Thuithear

            You can still miniswarm all four if you happen to have the old core set and two of this expansion. I think it’s just the identity factor that’s bugging people. TIE Fighters are so iconic for the Imperials, and such a staple of of the game, that to have them now available to rebels is a big switch.
            Personally, I’m not that big a Star Wars fan (I haven’t even seen Rebels), so I look look at everything in the game strictly from mechanics rather rather than fluff, and I like the addition of them. It’ll be interesting, especially with that illicit slot from the unique title.

            A TAP swarm would be hilarious but I’d say it’d work awfully over there. The 4 Bomber list I was testing had potential, but against defenders it often ran out of steam, which is a real shame because it was really interesting to play. Having said that, having seen the lists hitting, maybe 4 Bombers would be great. They’d sure make short work of that double Ghost list…

  • wr00t

    I haven’t played Escape, but i think i would prefer Fuse for a real-time dice rolling co-op game.

    • Haven’t heard of Fuse, but I’ll sure look it up now. Sounds sci-fi?

      • wr00t

        Actually, i haven’t played it either 😀 No, it is about disarming bombs, but it is very abstract (not the Bomb Squad if you thought about it). Just rolling dice and assigning them to various cards in a most efficient way. On a timer.

  • Meitreya Mayako

    I am at GenCon. Still took time to look here. Acquisitions include Tesla V Edison, Star Trek Ascendancy, Star Trek Panic, Legacy Big Trouble Little China, Valiant Universe, Cthulhu Deck Builder, Pandemic Cthulhu. I wanted to poke through Fantasy Flight for Armada, but their line is always too long. Mystic Vale was tremendous fun. AEG has really knocked it out of the park with that one. Today has one final tournament, bargain hunting and saying goodbye to too many friends. I did visit the comics row. I was surprised you weren’t there.

    Not sure how my group wiuld like Escape. We aren’t generally shouty types.

    • A trip all the way from Ireland is waaaaay out of budget for us, I’m afraid. We do aim to make it to Gen Con some year, but it might be a while away yet.
      That sounds like an amazing haul of games. I’m really interested to see what Star Trek Ascendancy turns out like, as I think we will have to decide between that and Star Trek: Frontiers.
      Thanks for keeping up with the comic!

  • Chris Funk

    When I teach Escape, I offer two main rules.

    1. You should be rolling your dice.
    2. If you are not rolling your dice, you should be rolling your dice.