Second Look - Boardgame reviews in depth. Check out that cat.This Second Look is going to be a twofer from Mind the Gap Studios.

First up is a game I briefly played at my PAX East, Wizard Dodgeball. The game is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, a two player game of dodge ball where players can hurl spells at each other (and themselves.) The game is fairly easy to learn, but offers a good amount of depth through clever use of spells, team order, and … balls.

My first play of the game at PAX East found me getting trounced by the woman who was demoing it. Latter games at home with my children found me rarely the victor. I stink at this game. That doesn’t stop be from enjoying it, though! The more I play the game, the more I’m finding interesting way to maneuver myself and use my spells.

Overall it’s a really enjoyable game to play. All the mechanics work nicely together, and you really do need a good combination of ball play and spells to pull out a win. The game is available to print-and-play, and I believe will have another Kickstarter session popping up soon. It’s worth the time and materials to put it together, and it’s most definitely worth a pledge when the Kickstarter pops up.

The next from designer Peter Newland is ZtoZ, a zombie survival party game. This game currently is up on Kickstarter, and a simple pledge of $13 will snag you a copy when it’s funded.

The game is a simple stack of 56 cards. Each card has something to read on it. Read the card while looking someone in the eye and impersonating a zombie. If the person can keep a straight face, they’re golden. Any kind of smile, giggle, snort, or similar and that person is now a zombie. They’re not out of the game though! They get to shamble around the table, making zombie noises and helping to current reader turn their current victims into zombies. Last man standing wins.

It’s a LOT of fun, especially with children. It’s also the perfect little party game for Halloween parties this time of year. I know I’ll be taking it to my next Cub Scout pack meeting to play with the boys.

Just like Wizard Dodgeball, there’s a print-and-play version of the game, but I highly recommend putting in a pledge to get your own copy when the Kickstarter project finishes. There are so many quick little party card games out there, but this one really is a blast.

Preview copies of Wizard Dodgeball and ZtoZ were provided free for review by Mind the Gap Studios