Saturday, September 8, 2012

Smashing Things Up - A Game Night With Paul Peterson

Last night our gaming group was fortunate enough to have a special guest. Turns out a member of our group is old friends with Paul Peterson, designer of the Guillotine card game. He joined us to introduce us to his new game, "Smash Up", which will be put out by AEG. Smash Up got it's debut at GenCon and sold out in the first two days. Not bad!

Anyhow, Smash Up is a cool game in which you take two decks of card, each with a theme and smash them up into a single deck. So, you might end up with Robots and Dinosaurs with Lasers or Ninjas and Wizards. Each themed deck is made up of Minion and Action cards. Each turn you play a single Minion and/or Action card from your hand. Card effects may modify these basic moves. 

What you are doing with these cards is battling over any of five bases that are in play at any given time. Bases have effects on them that modify the Minions and Actions played there and/or other game effects. Bases are scored based on who has more points of Strength there with a first, second and runner up reward. These rewards very from Base to Base as does the overall Strength of the Base - a number you have to overcome with the total Strength of all Minions, from all players, placed at that Base.

Big D contemplates his next move.
The game plays rather smoothly and the combinations of different themes allows for a good amount of variety in game play and strategy. Ninjas, for example are all about sneaking in and changing things up. Wizards are about moving cards through the deck and hand. Zombies seem to be about resilience. Smash 'em up and you have great fun with your Zombie Pirates!

In addition to showing off his baby, Paul was a great guy to hang out with and is every bit a gamer as the rest of us. Between jokes, jibes and the usual trash talk, table talk, gossip and such, he even fielded our endless questions on the game design process.

I know he's a busy dude and he lives always away, but I do hope we can have Paul back for some more games.

Thanks Paul for coming over and thank you Chuck for inviting him.



  1. Since reading about it, mainly Gencon reveiwers, I really fancy trying this one.I couldn't find any availability in the UK though, so it'll have to wait, lucky you.

  2. I believe it gets its general release later this month.

  3. I had a ninja shopper at Gencon and this one was on a short list of stuff to get, but got the axe in the end. Everything I've read seems positive, and it's always nice to play games with their writers to see how it's really supposed to work!

    1. Funny you should mention that.

      We joked around about not being able to argue the rules and Paul pointed out that having been involved in the whole deaigm process he sometimes finds you can fall back on knowledge of rules that may have been edited out.


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