I first heard of the game Goita at Cafe Subbox in Nagano and picked up a copy there. Originating in the Ushitsu region of Noto Peninsula around 1900, Goita is a game played with shogi-like tiles or cards with four people split into two teams. The goal is to be the first player to play all their cards, with the last card determining points scored. There are several variant win conditions that add complexity.

In the Box

Being a traditional game, there are multiple publishers of Goita. The one I have is from Ten Days Games and consists of thirty-two cards, four reference cards, and four score cards. The rules fit on a single small two sided sheet of paper.

Goita box and its contents laid out flat on grey felt.

The cards feel nice in the hand and are well thought out. The center of the card is Continue reading Goita

Cafe Subbox

Storefront with white calls and blue highlights.
I almost walked by the store at night, but the meeples told me I was at the right place.

I was in Nagano a while back and stopped by a small board game store and cafe called Cafe Subbox. It’s about a 12 minute walk from the station and 20 minute from the gates of Zenkoji. Easy to miss from the outside, the inside is has a warm, welcoming vibe. There was a family playing a board game at the table near the door, and the owner was behind the counter. They had a sale going on, and a nice selection of games for sale as well as play in the store.

View of the shop from the entry. A narrow entry leads to space that widens with more tables and shelves of games.
View from the entry way. A family was playing a board game to the right of the photo.

Continue reading Cafe Subbox