Birthday : The Gathering @ 25C Art & Hobbies

Date : June 5, 2018

I recently met up with a few gaming buddies to celebrate my birthday at 25C Art & Hobbies. We hadn’t met up in a while, as life has a tendency to get busy these days. This was an opportunity to catch up, eat pizza, and play boardgames!

Let them eat cake…

We reserved one of the smaller rooms available at 25C. From left to right: Darren, Ivan, Vin Tsen (who brought the cream cake). Behind the camera: Gary. I’m glad they made time to celebrate with me.

Divide and Conquer

In addition to the cake, we also enjoyed pizza and snacks from Domino’s. The highlight of the day was a five-player session of Battle for Rokugan.

Battle Without Honour and Humanity!

Battle for Rokugan is a territory control boardgame set in the world of Legend of the Five Rings.


Crouching Dragon, Hidden Tokens

The game, published by Fantasy Flight Games, is played with hidden order tokens that let players make attacks on each other’s provinces, as well as allowing for complicated bluffs and counter-bluffs. Victory goes to whoever can guess their enemy’s moves correctly and psyche out their opponents! Each of the seven factions has its own unique abilities (up to five factions can be played at a time).

Time Enough For Games

Battle for Rokugan doesn’t have that many types of components or subsystems, so it’s possible to complete the game in just a couple of hours, even with a full five novice players joining for the first time. And if I’ve learned one thing about growing older, it’s that our gaming time is precious, so sometimes a shorter and simpler game is better.

The Stars Are Better Off Without Us

Earlier in the day, Darren, Vin Tsen and I also had time for a three-player session of The Expanse, published by Wizkids. It’s a “Cold War in space” territory control game based on the excellent science fiction TV series (which just got saved from cancellation by Amazon). Players try to allocate influence tokens in bases throughout the map of the Solar System, by moving their fleets and trying to counter other players’ moves. Player options are constrained by an event card system where every card is a two-edged sword that will offer an opponent a beneficial event, much like in the Twilight Struggle boardgames.

The Tyranny of Distance

The factions play very differently, more asymmetrically than the ones in Battle for Rokugan. For instance, the more wealthy and militarily powerful factions (in the Inner Planets) find themselves forced to travel further across the map in order to score points in the Outer Planets. If the game has any weakness it is the old-fashioned cards-and-counters production values – there are no fancy plastic ships or bases provided, and the cards are a bit on the thin side and may need sleeving. Unlike Battle for Rokugan, The Expanse isn’t being carried by any local game stores, so you may need to buy on Amazon like I did.

25C Art & Hobbies

Located in SS4D/2, near the Kelana Jaya LRT station, 25C about is a hobby space run by the people behind Comic Fiesta. The shop carries art supplies, figurines and plushies, and some card games and miniatures. They have comfortable air-conditioned rooms for rent — the smaller ones have a large table and eight chairs for RM8 per hour (RM10 on weekends) — and I have been running games here since the place opened last year.

Thank you Terry!

I’ve always experienced good service from Terry at 25C, who responds quickly to enquiries online. He and the other staff keep the place open from 3pm-10pm on Tuesdays to Fridays, and 10am-10pm on weekends and public holidays. Be sure to check out more pictures of 25C at the Gallery.

A Year Older

It’s been a year of lessons learned and new experiences for me. I started the blog with wild ideas about what I wanted to write, and benefitted from having an award-winning site designed by my significant other, Elisha. But I fell off schedule for about a year and now here I am.
In 2018, I’ve tried to get back to a regular gaming and blogging schedule. I’m happy to just write about games in a way that people will want to read, while staying true to what I want to do. If I can just do that, it will be enough for now.
This is Kai for Role Over Play Dead, a blog about the Malaysian roleplaying scene, signing off. If this is your first time, be sure to check out our Lists & Links. You can ask me any questions you have by going to my Contact page.

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