I’m continuing my alphabetical look at favorite games in my game collection. Let’s see what H has in hand!
How to Serve Man
How to Serve Man is a fairly straightforward worker-placement game where the theme is everything. Each players takes on the role of an alien chef in a cooking competition where the main protein is … humans. Over the course of the game, players collect ingredients and then cook them in various ways — broiling, frying, baking — all in pursuit of pleasing the judges with their finished recipes.
I’m not going to lie, the thing I like most about How to Serve Man is the theme. The game play is fairly simple, but the art on the recipe cards and the sick humor of it all is what sells it for me! Oh, and have I mentioned that I’m a vegetarian? Ha!
In Hardback players are 19th century novelists penning their epic masterpieces. It is a deck-building game where players use the letters in their hand to create words in order to purchase more powerful letters and, of course, earn points. By specializing in one or two genres of letters, the players can create powerful combos with even the simplest words.
Deck-building is one of my favorite types of games, and the combination of that with a word really captures my attention with Hardback. One thing I really like about Hardback is that you don’t have to make the most spectacular words in order to chain together the abilities of various cards — which is nice for someone who always struggles to make the most of my letters in other games (I’m looking at you, Scrabble!). At its heart, this is a deck-builder where the words are a supporting character, and that’s what I like about it.
In Habitats, players are building up nature reserves, placing different types of terrain and animals with the goal of making as many of those animals happy as possible. Each turn players will draft a new tile with a unique mechanism that has players moving their meeple around a grid of available tiles. Then they place it in their tableau, working to give each animal in the park the number of type of terrain that will make them happy.
Of course, I love Habitats because of all the wonderful animal tiles in the game, but I also like the puzzle it presents. Well, two puzzles, actually – the drafting puzzle and the puzzle of placing tiles in your tableau. In the drafting grid, you are often trying to guess what your opponent is going to do, in hopes of getting the one tile that will help you out before they do. But then, trying to figure out where to place each tile is always agonizing (in a good way).
What are your favorite games that start with the letter “H”? Or is there one from my list that you love or are hoping to try? Let me know in the comments!