Punching Cardboard

Another Year gone by and it's time for the lists to come out. These are the things that moved us in 2019. How do your experiences compare?

Grab a holiday cocktail, relax, and enjoy.


00:09:41 -- TV & Visual Entertainment (Spoilers and Rants)
00:25:36 -- Video / Computer Games
00:30:56 -- Board Games
01:32:23 -- Music
02:52:50 -- Whiskey & Whisky
02:57:50 -- Books



Direct download: PCP_166_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:02pm PDT

We go heavy on the games in this year's penultimate episode. Almost two hours taken to cover three games. We expect you'll have a good Idea on whether these are for you.



00:00:00 --  Straight Into Some Music (Delines, Clutch, Joe Henry, Perpetual Grace, Ltd.)
00:32:18 -- Symphony (first take)
00:57:44 -- Bios: Origins 2 (in-depth)
01:38:30 -- Circadians: First Light (in-depth)


Direct download: PCP_165_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 4:30pm PDT

This episode marks six years on the air. We take some time, at Joe's behest, to consider this and where the show might go from here. Also, we revisit a a game that was featured on the second episode, and preview a new release.

Have fun.


00:05:15 -- Tournamentville
00:09:35 -- Apologies and Better Angels
00:16:33 -- What I Appreciates
00:22:32 -- Making Bad Better and Good Worse
00:30:19 -- 6 Years Down the Road
01:00:10 -- Tank Duel (first take)
01:25:23 -- Yedo (revisited in-depth)


Direct download: PCP_164_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 2:30pm PDT

Fighting a cold and the off-season blues, we power though this episode to bring you some pretty heavy game discussion on entries old and new.

Whisky, music and a book round out the proceedings.


00:14:26 -- Panamax (revisited, in-depth)
00:58:36 -- Paladins of the West Kingdom (in depth)
01:45:27 -- Tearraforming Mars: No Need to Draft
01:58:04 -- Kavalan ex-Bourbon Cask Whisky
02:04:15 -- Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds: Ghosteen
02:10:58 -- Lanny, by Max Porter

Direct download: PCP_163_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 4:56pm PDT

Often postponed, but never defeated, this new episode transforms from a pile of scraps into a glorious quilt of gaming discourse.

Other stuff as well.



00:10:24 -- High Frontier
00:19:44 -- Living Rules, Collections, Rules Again, and So Forth . . . .
00:41:57 -- To Play or Not to Play?
00:54:24 -- Hannibal and Hamilcar (1st Take)
01:03:28 -- Polis
01:05:37 -- More Hannibal
01:08:18 -- Back to Polis
01:15:06 -- New Games??
01:18:42 -- Ardbeg AN OA Single Malt
01:33:10 -- Music (Sturgill Simpson, Mikal Cronin, Mark Lanegan, Anna Meridith, Guided by Voices)
02:03:32 -- War Room (1st Take)

Direct download: PCP_162_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 5:16pm PDT

Consider a concert set list. The band comes out and opens with a couple of deep cuts, a bit slow-tempo, really a nod to the fans. But then they kick it in, building tension, generating release, mixing cuts from all their albums, back and forth across the years. For the encore, a few more deep cuts for the die-hards who haven't rushed out to beat the traffic.

We'll just say that this episode is like that show.


00:16:08 -- Player Usage and the Art of Making Out
00:21:46 -- Guild Usage and the Art of Restaurant Patronage
00:23:59 -- T-Shirt usage and the Art of Support
00:27:52 -- City of the Big Shoulders and the Art of Declaration
00:31:18 -- Creating Music and the Art of Distribution
00:35:21 -- High Frontier 4 All and the Art of Paying What's Due
00:39:10 -- The Long and Winding Road (A Games Journey)
01:36:25 -- Right Here, Right Now: Top 5 Euro Games
01:53:04 -- Undaunted: Normandy (in-depth)
02:27:21 -- Snap, by Belinda Bauer

Direct download: PCP_161_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 5:26pm PDT

We start slow, as cool ambient music on a rainy Autumn evening, but by the halfway point we warm to the task and heat the discussion up to a boil.

Some games just get you that way.


00:06:01 -- Tournament Losses (Wir Sind das Volk)
00:17:11 -- Innovation & Shogun (sessions)
00:28:25 -- Five-Player Games, now!
00:40:57 -- Spiderman on PS4
00:52:35 -- Endless Legend
01:00:45 -- City of the Big Shoulders (in-depth)
01:43:50 -- Vindication (preview)
01:54:57 -- Oban Little Bay
01:58:32 -- Washington Black, by Esi Edugyan


Direct download: PCP_160_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 5:12pm PDT

Games, Games, Game. Now that Summer is ended, or at least Summer vacation has, we're getting back into a routine that promises to result in the playing of more games.

As a result, despite a brief interlude where we express a bit of weariness with the state of the world, we're diving deep into a few games currently hitting our table. Get your wet suit on and join us.


00:09:18 -- Wir Sind das Volk (tournament sessions)
00:33:49 -- Sekigahara (Session)
00:45:20 -- Weary and Filled with Despair
00:55:45 -- The City of the Big Shoulders (preview session)
01:19:27 -- Lords of Hellas (in-depth)

Direct download: PCP_159_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 2:47pm PDT

It's been a pretty lazy Summer here in the Pacific Northwest; hence, we are pretty lazy at the moment.

We find ourselves without a deep take on a game here, so we wander lazily around a number of game sessions and offer up some first impressions. This one's really pretty much about playing games.



00:16:35 -- Joe's Light Game Roundup
00:25:41 -- Play it Now! Games with 2 Players
00:36:49 -- Food Chain Magnate (session)
00:45:22 -- Too Light & Too Long: SpaceCorp?
00:50:17 -- Pipeline (first take)
00:56:43 -- Lords of Hellas (first take)
01:11:10 -- Agra & Lowenherz (on the table again)
01:13:41 -- Crusader Kings (first take)
01:23:16 -- Outpost (first take)
01:28:48 -- Star Wars: Outer Rim (first take)
01:41:20 -- Call to Post (session)
01:49:10 -- Not 2:18 (was something cut?)

Direct download: PCP_158_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 6:10pm PDT

There is no particular order to the order in which we talk about games in this episode.

We have a free-wheelin' conversation covering several games to kick things off and then go off on tangents for awhile before a couple deeper dives, including all the mistakes we made.

I mean, come on, who presents their mistakes as a feature of a game conversation? That's just how we do I guess. Enjoy.


00:04:26 -- Freewheelin' Game Chatter
00:24:08 -- A Wir Sind Das Volk Tournament update
00:29:43 -- The Gen Con Non-Preview Segment featuring Pusher Joe. We're Sorry.
00:58:24 -- Birthday Gaming: Escape Plan (a five-player revelation)
01:17:48 -- Aberlour 16 year old
01:25:38 -- Downfall: Mistakes Were Made (in-depth, kinda)
02:12:00 -- Retro Spins #1: Beth Orton's Central Reservation
02:16:31 -- Dark & Money Heist (sexy)

Direct download: PCP_157_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:11pm PDT

Here we present a nice little boardgame stew peppered with a bit of digression and topped off with morally ambiguous book. A hearty Summer meal, kinda like a pasty in Phoenix in the middle of July, except it's games.

Made sense to me when I wrote it. Enjoy.


00:13:24 -- Homestretch with Middle-Schoolers
00:22:02 -- Customer Service: The 7th Continent Replacement Cards
00:26:04 -- Less Stranger Things, More Patriot Please
00:31:17 -- PCBA and other Computer Games
00:38:31 -- The Teeth of Dominant Species and the Paperwork of 18XX
00:57:23 -- A Session of Pax Pamir, 2nd Edition
01:20:00 -- Yinzi: The Shining Ming Dynasty (in-depth)
01:59:57 -- The Painter, by Peter Heller

Direct download: PCP_156_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:32pm PDT

Everything old is new again.

We spend a couple hours discussing games that are maybe a bit long in the tooth. Do they hold up? Are their technologies still viable in this modern world?

We also talk about some new old music and old new whiskey.


00:09:47 -- Caylus or Doing Taxes (Joe's choice)
00:14:37 -- Two Versions of Pax Pamir
00:23:25 -- A Little Glen More off the Shelf
00:26:30 -- Yinzi (first take)
00:40:36 -- Q&A and Whiskey
01:11:05 -- The Quiet of Night and High Lonesome Recollections: Western Stars
01:33:07 -- Agricola (in-depth)
01:52:20 -- Agricola: Farmers of the Moor (in-depth)

Direct download: PCP_155_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 1:52pm PDT

Not you people. Not you, the listeners. But when you put 9 people in a house for a week things can get lively. I wonder why they've never made a TV show about this.

So here's what we recall of our annual trip to Colorado, at least the games portion of it. Lots of games


00:03:46 -- A Festivus of Thank Yous
00:17:25 -- Safe Travels
00:24:56 -- Condottiere (session strategies)
00:34:47 -- Carolvs Magnvs (first take)
00:43:20 -- El Grande (in-depth)
01:03:23 -- Roll For the Galaxay: Rivalry (first take)
01:16:07 -- Macallan Edition 3
01:24:20 -- The Dream Syndicate, These Times
01:31:54 -- Sidereal Confluence (in-depth)
02:02:36 -- Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland, Patrick Radden Keefe

Direct download: PCP_154_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:28pm PDT

A pretty full show.

We cover three Euro games of various weights, several albums that have found their way into rotation and a dram of fine Scotch. Also, a heated discussion about the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones.

Now, who needs more rocks?


00:11:12 -- Game of Thrones, Penultimate edition (SPOILERS!!!!), Now With More Mandalorian
00:44:55 -- Concordia Venus (session)
01:00:30 -- Agra Again (another session report)
01:15:06 -- The Macallan Edition #2
01:24:24 -- King Gizzard, Trapper Schoep, Fontaines D.C., Little Steven, Craig Finn (new albums)
01:32:33 -- Glen Hansard, The Wild Willing and the idea of album sequencing
01:47:44 -- Architects of the West Kingdom (in-depth)
02:22:13 -- The Marx Brothers Meet Salvador Dali (next book selection??)

Direct download: PCP_153_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:51pm PDT

I will never fly again. I will never fly again. I will never fly again. I will never fly again.  We played Escape Plan. I will never fly again. I will never fly again. I will never fly again. I will never fly again. I will never fly again. Enjoyed a dram of the BenRiach Horizons. I will never fly again.  I will never fly again. Not Leet. I will never fly again. I will never fly again.


00:07:42 -- Are You Watching Game of Thrones (Spoilers)
00:20:25 -- Last Ditch Effort (Games on the Stack)
00:24:41 -- The Journey of a Lifetime (Jim vs. the Airlines Round 2)
01:21:03 -- Escape Plan (in-depth)
02:08:20 -- Episode X: A False Hope (Call to Post Edition)
02:15:52 -- The BenRiach Horizons 12yo Single Malt (Nutty Lemons)
02:22:50 -- Tigerman

Direct download: PCP_152_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 1:22pm PDT

Sometimes, after recording, I'm uncertain as to whether the episode is worth releasing.

Sometimes we go into the recording session thinking we have very little to say.

Episode 151 met both of those conditions. Yet, in the editing, all seemed well, and in fact, it felt as though much good was accomplished. Whether you agree or not is another matter completely.


00:15:45 -- 10 Days of Silence
00:32:02 -- Culling the Social Media Some More
00:35:43 -- The Games People Play (Part 1)
00:38:15 -- World's Fair 1893 (in-depth revisited)
00:59:49 -- Snow Tails (in-depth)
01:16:16 -- It's Okay to Lighten Up
01:24:30 -- Nikka Whisky From The Barrel
01:36:49 -- The Games People Play (Part 2: Electronic Ramble Edition)
02:22:26 -- Not Suffering
02:27:07 -- No Rants

Direct download: PCP_151_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 4:29pm PDT

Welcome to our 150th episode extravaganza! And by extravaganza we mean the same ol' same ol'. A few games, an album, a book, some banter, a disagreement or two.

Parades and fireworks not included.


00:12:44 -- Great Western Trail: Rails to the North (in-depth)
00:40:46 -- Lowenherz (session)
00:59:43 -- Mercury Rev, Bobbie Gentry's The Delta Sweete Revisited
01:14:20 -- Quartermaster General: The Cold War (in-depth session)
01:48:00 -- Spoonbenders, Daryl Gregory 
02:20:25 -- The State of the Podcast
02:39:22 -- Loss

Direct download: PCP_150_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 4:50pm PDT

We execute all the plans we never had. Rather, we have no plan and decide to abandon the plan we don't have. In other words, this one is just a loose conversation touching on a slew of games, a couple artful albums, and a damn fine dram of whisky.



00:15:08 -- Sessions (Game of Thrones, Aquasphere, Calimala, Thunder Alley, Agra)
00:35:05 -- Destiny 2 00:36:50 --Civ Games
00:53:51 -- Kilchoman 2008 Single Malt
01:02:16 -- Music (Dan Mangan, Charles Lloyd, Lucinda Williams)
01:20:18 -- Q&A

Direct download: PCP_149_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 5:15pm PDT

Some Games. A Dram. A good book.

Need More? Thought not.


00:16:11 -- Feudum Revisited
00:30:11 -- The Return of the Video Game (Civ 6, Endless Space 2, Destiny 2)
00:53:34 -- The Glendronach 15 yo Single Malt
01:02:17 -- New Frontiers (First Take)
01:13:26 -- Smartphone Inc. (In-Depth)
01:56:40 -- The Relic Hunter

Direct download: PCP_148_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 5:03pm PDT

It was the best of games. It was the worst of games. Yeah, we got wisdom, and foolishness, and whatever else this old fat world throws at us.

Welcome to the 147.

The people of the 147 are in a bit of a mood and and the discussion is a bit gritty, but there is much to explore in this one. The folk here aren't interested in the black and white of things, but instead revel in the shades of gray embedded throughout.

Don't be outraged, be engaged.


00:18:27 -- 18Ireland
00:40:57 -- SpaceCorp (in-depth)
01:08:57 -- Glendalough 13 yo Irish Single Malt
01:21:20 -- Captains of the Gulf (in-depth)
01:39:33 -- Love & Hip-Hop???
01:53:17 -- Dodgers (Bill Beverly)
02:32:40 -- No-Fun February

Direct download: PCP_147_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 3:54pm PDT

Here it be.

Our annual look back. Our listaganza. The episode where we talk all about the best games, whiskies, and albums we encountered the previous year. You ask for it and we provide it. Or, maybe you don't ask for it, but here it is anyway.

So take a listen and see if we are remotely close to where last year took you.


00:02:30 -- January's Book
00:12:43 -- The Music Lists
01:07:47 -- The Games Lists
01:58:40 -- The Games Honorable Mentions
02:05:45 -- The Whisk(e)y Lists
02:23:25 -- Outro: Odds, Ends and Deliberations

Direct download: PCP_146_final.mp3
Category:Board Games -- posted at: 6:29pm PDT