GCL Mafia 206 - Timmy, Johnny, and Spike
Robin Levins
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Round Rock
TX
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Welcome to GCL Mafia Division's weekly list! If you stumbled onto this list by accident (or on purpose!) and want to know more about the Game Chat League concept, please see the GCL Mafia wiki page. If you want to look at past GCL Mafia lists, go here: GameChat League: Mafia Division Subscription Thread

Our current roster in order of preparation (next week's poster in bold):

Dolus
ecargo
Epsilon_Balls
Beloch
Happymrdave
eapeas
captainraffi
fdubois
touchstonethefool
bobcatpoet
charlest
Thesp

The first few items are intended to foster discussion.

Please add an item to represent your gaming life for the week of December 29th, 2014 - January 3rd, 2015. List any games played along with any other information that you deem appropriate. Also, feel free to give life updates, fun facts, or any other super exciting and utterly interesting thoughts you may have.

Rules for the List are:
1) A weekly game is spotlighted and discussed. The poster will choose which questions are asked about it (whether its merits, drawbacks, experiences, etc.).

2) Themed questions are optional. They can be gaming-related topics (current news, trends, etc.) or non-gaming-related topics (food, vacation, unicorns, cleaning the gutters, etc.)
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1. Board Game: Finca [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:614]
Board Game: Finca
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
TX
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The spotlighted game of the week is Finca! It's one of Kristen's favorites, and I managed to snag a copy of it for her for Christmas. It's part of our 10x10 challenge for 2015 (to be discussed later), and is one of the first rondel games I ever played. So...

1. Have you played Finca before?
2. If you have played it, what do you think of it? How do you rate it?
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2. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: The Brink of War [Average Rating:7.77 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.77 Unranked]
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: The Brink of War
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
TX
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I was asked to do my top 5 Race for the Galaxy cards, using whatever criteria I desired to use. So, here they are:

From gallery of red turtle
From gallery of ackmondual
From gallery of red turtle
From gallery of ackmondual
From gallery of red turtle


1. Trade League
Sure, it can be over-valued, and typically doesn't score a lot of points. But it is the best leech of the all-important consume phase, which makes it a rare commodity. A classic, but one I nearly always love to see show up in my hand (especially early).

2. Imperium Planet Busters
This card says LOOK AT ME. I WILL PUNCH YOU IN THE FACE FROM ACROSS THE TABLE. I don't care what your planet is, I don't even want it for myself, I just want to blow it up. How awesome is that? On top of that, just the fact that you can afford to play it says loads about your card flow. The inner Timmy in me rejoices when I get to play this card.

3. Smuggling Lair
This card is subtle, but extremely potent in the early game. It's an easy military settler, and the consume ability (one good for 2 cards) is nearly as good as trading yourself. Especially for military players who can use a way of getting easy cards from the planets they play, Smuggling Lair is a solid card that I rarely pass up the opportunity to play if I have 1 or more military.

4. Pan Galactic Affluence
I can understand why some people think this card is broken. And, truth be told, I hate to see it on anyone else's tableau, because it makes developing so good.

5. Spice World
Another subtle card, it turns blue goods into trading power houses, which can be especially useful in the early stages of a Produce-Consume player's tableau.
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3. Board Game: Magic: The Gathering [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:155] [Average Rating:7.51 Unranked]
Board Game: Magic: The Gathering
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
TX
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The top 5 list made me remember an interesting Magic: the Gathering design article from many years ago, about the type or gamers Magic appeals to, Timmy, Johnny, and Spike. It's worth a read in its own right, but the basic gist of this are three gamer archetypes:

Timmy
"Timmy is what we in R&D call the "power gamer." Timmy likes to win big. He doesn’t want to eke out a last minute victory. Timmy wants to smash his opponents. He likes his cards to be impressive, and he enjoys playing big creatures and big spells.
...
Timmy cares more about the quality of his win than the quantity of his wins. For example, Timmy sits down and plays ten games. He only wins three games out of ten but the three he wins, he dominates his opponent. Timmy had fun. Timmy walks away happy."

Johnny
"Johnny likes a challenge. Johnny enjoys winning with cards that no one else wants to use. He likes making decks that win in innovative ways. What sets Johnny apart from the other profiles is that Johnny enjoys deckbuilding as much as (or more than) he enjoys playing. Johnny loves the cool interactions of the cards. He loves combo decks. Johnny is happiest when he’s exploring uncharted territory.

Like Timmy, Johnny cares more about the quality of his wins than the quantity. For example, let's say Johnny builds a new deck that has a neat but difficult way to win. He plays ten games and manages to get his deck to do its thing… once. Johnny walks away happy."

Spike
"Spike is the competitive player. Spike plays to win. Spike enjoys winning. To accomplish this, Spike will play whatever the best deck is. Spike will copy decks off the Internet. Spike will borrow other players’ decks. To Spike, the thrill of Magic is the adrenalin rush of competition. Spike enjoys the stimulation of outplaying the opponent and the glory of victory.

Spike cares more about the quantity of wins than the quality. For example, Spike plays ten games and wins nine of them. If Spike feels he should have won the tenth, he walks away unhappy."

Which are you? Or are you a hybrid of some of these? Or are you something else entirely in gamespace?
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Board Game: Happy New Year
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
TX
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Have any New Year's resolutions you care to share, gaming or otherwise?
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5. Board Game: Taluva [Average Rating:7.17 Overall Rank:497]
Board Game: Taluva
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
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Kicking off the new year the right way - gaming with friends and getting 2 10x10 plays in on the first day! meeple

New to me:

Gold!
Pax Pamir

Not new:

Taluva x 3
Maskmen
Hanabi
Medici
Parade
Keyflower
Acquire
Dominion

iOS plays:

Ascension: Realms Unraveled x a ton
Puerto Rico
Carcassonne

-----

We had a lovely little new year's thing at a friend's house and we got in some gaming there before celebrating with a plush Cthulhu drop (to celebrate how we just finished up a Call of Cthulhu campaign) and then we called it a night. Some other gaming as well including finally helping a local friend with a playtest.

Taluva is on my 10x10 and it's been played 4 or 5 times in the last month around here. Great little abstract that offers a lot of interesting (but often subtle) decisions about how to expand in a way that benefits you without being easily blockable - but you might have to cut short your own expansion to block your opponents with some tile smack-downs and hut destruction. The biggest downside to the game is that in a 3 or 4p game there's definitely potential for ganging up on someone. I'm wondering if playing with teams in 4p would work well to help with that - but clearly that's not an option in 3p. Other than that I think I enjoy pretty much everything about the game.

Pax Pamir is the next in the Pax series and a local friend of mine, Cole, is designing it. It's nearly done and he already has a publisher. It's in the same vein as Pax Porfiriana (as the title suggests) but it has a different set of mechanics to reflect the different time and place. We enjoyed it quite a bit - I think it will appeal nicely to people who like the controlled-chaos feel of Pax Porfiriana.

Gold! is decent little card game that plays 2 or 3. We played with 3, I think it would be better with 2. Enjoyable but not really going to blow anyone away.

MaskMen continues to be a great little trick-taker. The rounds are largely decided in the first few moves but there's still room for some clever play.

Hanabi remains a favorite of mine although we don't play it as much these days. Still highly enjoyable and I think it deserved the SdJ win.

Medici is a classic Knizia game which supports six players very nicely. I enjoy it but I feel like I've done really well with the same strategy several times and I'm not really trying much new with each play. It's a solid game and I'll play again but sometimes you'll just get shafted with a bad mix of tiles or someone will bid up what you need to be spiteful at their own expense. The usual result of calling someone's bluff on an aggressive play this is that both of you end up in a worse position and the other players benefit.

Parade is a fantastic 2p card game with a great mix of strategic and tactical choices to make. It claims to support up to 6, but with more than 3 it becomes a bit of a chaotic mess. Still, for 2 or 3, great, great game. My wife pulled off a victory over me when a gamble I took to end the game early failed to pay off.

Keyflower is a favorite and I'm always glad to get this to the table. I went with a potentially risky strategy of buying very little until late game but I did stockpile meeples and was ready to make some big moves near the end. It did work out for me and I had a reasonably good margin of victory. One of the new players wasn't too hot on the game but the others seemed to have fun.

Acquire is another classic and holds up rather well still. The main issue here is that if you're shut out of early mergers you can easily get stuck with no real chance of victory quite early on. It's short enough that this isn't a huge loss of time but my wife got the short end of the merger stick this session and she had relatively little she could do even though we were less than 5 or so rounds into the game.

Dominion was enjoyable as always. We played with just the base set and Alchemy this time - next time we're going to try playing with 100% Alchemy cards to see what happens. It should be an interestingly unusual setup.
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6. Board Game: Money! [Average Rating:6.53 Overall Rank:1788]
Board Game: Money!
Jeffrey Drozek-Fitzwater
United States
Houston
Texas
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We were on vacation until Thursday, Friday was mostly sleeping, so... yeah.

Money!: This is a first: A disappointing Knizia. I'm sure there are other duds out there, but this is my first. It just didn't work for me and the scoring was not intuitive at all. Way too much HTI for how short of a game it is.
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7. Board Game: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar [Average Rating:7.91 Overall Rank:37]
Board Game: Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar
Raf Cordero
United States
Bolingbrook
Illinois
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Cheaty Mages! x1 (new)
Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar x1 (new)

Cheaty Mages
New Year's Eve was supposed to be a big night of gaming but dinner went really long and we ended up only getting able to play 1 game of this. It's by the same guy who originally designed Love Letter but needs a minimum of 3 which is why I hadn't played it yet. It was neat; It has a lot of Fluxx/Munchkin-like elements with a lot of random changes to everything going on, but they're controlled and there is enough strategy going on that it elevates it a bit. My only complaint was that there is a maximum amount of money you can earn each round, and by the last round two of us led everyone else by more than that. They were effectively eliminated, but not actually eliminated which was kind of lame.

T'zolkin
Katie got this for me for Christmas and we were both looking forward to playing. I was a little worried that it wasn't going to go over well as it was a bit complex to explain everything, but you could see it click and it was very clear to me that Katie is at that point in gaming where you can understand games much faster because of previous ones you have played. The game itself is really cool, I liked it a lot. Katie won by 12. I probably waited a turn or two too long to start grabbing points but it ended up closer than I though. I had things set up really well and in the third to last round I grabbed start player so I could advance the gears twice, so she only had 1 action on the final turn. I, on the other hand, had 5 dudes out on the board and was able to score >30 points on the last turn. Her lead held though. We both enjoyed it.

On my Mind
I got my first KS game that is more than just a bunch of cards over the weekend, in Brew Crafters. I haven't played it, but from the instructions and reviews I've read it seems like it is basically Beer-gricola. I'm excited.

One of the reasons I have a low play count this week is that I spent some time on my oft-neglected hobbies of miniature painting and home brewing. I've been having trouble with bottle carbonation, so I went back to a simple low-ABV extract brew to get some control in place. It's a recipe I've made before, that I know is tasty so I'm eager to see if I can figure out what's going on with the CO2 levels. Only 5 weeks until I find out!shake
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8. Board Game: Mythotopia [Average Rating:6.87 Overall Rank:1598]
Board Game: Mythotopia
Charlie Theel
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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Mythotopia x2 (new to me)
Coconuts (new to me)
Battle Sheep (new to me)
The Bottle Imp (new to me)



Mythotopia
Funny thing happened, I taught this to 2 others and we all really enjoyed it. It was great, firing on all cylinders, turns were fast, and conflict was to be had. I slew dragons, built castles, developed cities, and won a relatively close game.

Later I realized we played the end-game wrong. We didn't end all ongoing wars to calculate the victor. It would have helped if I hadn't read the rules 2 weeks before playing (only skimming before the game to recall what I had read).

A couple days later I taught 3 new people and everything was going great - until we hit the end game of course. It was drawn out, slow, brought everyone close together in score, and sapped the joy out of the experience. It came down to players getting an unlucky draw with no military and not being able to lay seige to the leader which allowed him to claim victory.

Once I've played a few more times to review it I don't see myself playing RAW ever again. Unintended house rules are the bee's knees, at least in this case.

Coconuts
Whoah this game rocks. Simple dexterity game but there's some strategy and the components/theme is great. I can see myself actually getting my wife or other non-gamers to play this at a party. Picking this up soon. Will look great next to my beaten up Sorry! Sliders box.

Battle Sheep
Less impressed here but it wasn't bad. Slightly deeper Hey, That's My Fish! but more fiddly. I like how the board is different each play though.

The Bottle Imp
Trick taking games and their ilk are not my thing and this wasn't really an exception. There was definitely some clever things going on but it also felt a little fiddly for this type of game. I also don't understand why the cards don't list a number instead of showing a specific amount of coins for you to manually total.




On My Mind

I will finally be back with my normal group on Wednesday. We haven't met in a few weeks due to all of the Holiday travelling. I will be introducing them to Mythotopia and hopefully Witness if we have time. I think they will definitely enjoy Mythotopia but not sure about Witness. We'll see.

On the TV we finished Marco Polo which was decent. Also powered through the last season of Justified which was solid. Solid is the best word I can use to describe Justified as it's always pretty decent but never quite great. Walton Goggins really keeps it interesting though.

I also watched the first episode of Peaky Blinders on Netflix which really surprised me. Very good pilot and really liked the Scorcese-like use of music.

I spent the past few days of my life sorting/sleeving/cross-referencing my copy of Legendary Encounters. I'm luckily not missing any cards (which seems to be rare) and I'm excited to try it out. I have a slight sense of dread of the breakdown time though. I think there's a few too many decks on the dance floor.

I had a nasty stomach virus last week and threw up five times Tuesday night. I haven't thrown up since I was in middle school and I thought I was dying as I was lying on the bathroom floor at 2 in the morning fighting back diarrhea and vomit. It kind of ruined our New Year as well (I went to bed at 7) and we didn't make it out to a family party I've attended every year since I was around 10. I'm also blaming my inhibited mind under such duress for causing me to finally order Warhammer Diskwars.

I've been a fan of the Warhammer world since I was around 12. I've never been overly fond of the mechanics but I've had Dwarf, Skaven, and Orc armies at different points of my life. Warhammer Diskwars thus intrigued me but I couldn't pull the trigger. Well now I have two core sets and one of each of the expansions out thus far. I'm sitting on hundreds of disks and looking forward to my first play. I think it will be great for solo play too.

I'm having to make shelf space for all of the stuff I've gotten in the past couple months and Tragedy Looper, a game I think is magnificent, just went out the door. Sold it mainly because my group had played it several times and I foresee it having a very difficult time getting back to the table more than once everyone 8-12 months. Competition is fierce and the squishy anime tropes on the box couldn't hack it.

Got some other stuff I'd never thought I'd sell halfway out the door too. Space Cadets: Dice Duel and Flash Point are probably next as I'm picking up Coconuts and Cycaldes - Titans expansion soon (order sitting at MM). Tiny Epic Kingdoms will also meet its end once I review it. Must suck for a game's self-esteem to be kicked out into the cold world for a game where you fling small rubber poo-like objects into cups.

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9. Board Game: The Resistance: Hidden Agenda & Hostile Intent [Average Rating:7.65 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.65 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.65 Unranked]
Board Game: The Resistance: Hidden Agenda & Hostile Intent
James Keith
United States
Oakland
California
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New Games

Durak x1
The Resistance: Hidden Agenda & Hostile Intent x3
What the Heck? x3

Old Games

Pairs x4
Charades x1
The Resistance x3
Container x1
Snowdonia x1

A fairly game filled New Years, with some unexpected entries...

Some old college/post college buddies of mine were back in the area for New Years, and while a few of them game on occasion, they caught me by surprise by teaching me Durak, which was one of those viral-progression type deals where one of them had picked it up outside the group, then proceeded to bring it in an teach the rest of us.

It's sorta a kinda-shedding, kinda-trick-taking game where players take turns "attacking" each other, trying to foist off their cards in a series of two-card tricks, with the cards played limiting future cards in that round. It sounds a little arcane, but the game plays quickly enough and has an interesting ebb and flow (taking cards is bad, but having them opens up your options for play and for locking a player out with clever hand management). My trick-taking skills served me well, I went out second by holding back some key trump cards and managed to shed off most of my hand in a single attack.

All in all, it was pretty decent, it's got that classic card game feel but is different enough from other kinds of classic card games that it felt fresh, at least to me. I'm not sure I'm super hot on trying it again, but it was an interesting construct that I'd never seen before.

I got my copy of The Resistance: Hidden Agenda & Hostile Intent in time for New Years, and we got a few games of it to the table on New Years Day with my regular gaming group. As usual, we started out with a vanilla Commander/Assassin game, then tried one with the Trapper variant and then one with the Bodyguard/False Commander. I ended up being the Commander during the Trapper game, only to watch the game spiral beyond my reach when the Spies made some bravura trap-checks to "verify" each other which left me to either speak up and out myself or stay quiet and let them take the game. I'm kinda interested in trying the Trapper variant without any special roles to see how it works (or at least try it with more players, we were at the minimum 5p for our second two games).

I was a little annoyed because one of our number (who had played a lot of Avalon) insisted that we play with the False Commander if we were going to play with the bodyguard (based on the way the metagame with his group had evolved), which resulted in the third consecutive spy win of the day. It also didn't help that he was the Assassin for each game . In any case, I'm liking what we played so far and am interested in trying the Hunter module soon!

And finally, I got a chance to try Alex Randolf's polished chestnut What the Heck? (to which, I feel, Turn the Tide, BraveRats, and Eggs and Empires owe their lineage). It's a really nifty, quick, light bluffing game of simultaneous card selection, and everything that is fun about the above-mentioned games is present here, as well. I'm not really sure which of them I like best, but it's good to have this one under my belt as it rounds out my gaming experience. It also certainly helps that I love Worm Up!, another of Randolf's designs.
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10. Board Game: Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization [Average Rating:7.94 Overall Rank:42]
Board Game: Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization
Grace P.
United States
Turlock
California
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Agricola 1
Agricola: Farmers of the Moor 1 NEW!
Carcassonne: The Dice Game 1 NEW!
Dominion 1
The Golden Ages 1 NEW!
Pay Dirt 1 NEW!
Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization 1
Ticket to Ride Map Collection: Volume 4 – Nederland 1
Tiki Topple 1

Agricola: Farmers of the Moor was pretty much what others said it is. It's an okay expansion, but doesn't necessary add anything to the game in the sense of making it better. The heating and horses do give you more things to do / worry about, but I'm not sure it's necessary in a game that already has plenty to think about. In fact, playing with the expansion made me feel like a total Agricola noob. I would like to play the expansion again so as to become more familiar with it, but I think I will have to make a concerted effort to making that happen over just playing with the base game.

Carcassonne: TDG was a stocking stuffer from Matt. I expected pretty awful things given its rating/reviews. I thought it was okay for a 5-minute game, but it's pure strategy since I won a total luckfest.

The Golden Ages had some interesting things in it. I like how the aggression works as I don't enjoy having someone's more powerful military stomp all over me and destroy all the progress I made in a game. I'll need to try to play the game with more than just two to know whether or not it's a keeper.

Pay Dirt also had some interesting things in it, but like The Golden Ages, I'll need to play with more than two to see if it's a keeper.
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11. Board Game: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles – Base Set [Average Rating:7.32 Overall Rank:890]
Board Game: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles – Base Set
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
TX
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 8   Istanbul x4
 7.5   Ticket to Ride
 10   Catan
 8   Escape: The Curse of the Temple x2
 8   Coup
 7.5   Elfenland
 8   Pandemic: The Cure x5
 8   Sneaks & Snitches
 8.5   Empire Builder
 10   6 nimmt!
 7   Wits & Wagers
 7.5   *Formula D
 9   Ghost Blitz
 9   *Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles – Base Set
 7.5   Finca

 10   Dragon Age: Inquisition (video game)

I've played too many games over the past three weeks for me to remember good details from each of them, so let me hit some high points. I played a lot of Istanbul and Pandemic: The Cure with family. I swear I'm getting worse at Istanbul, but enjoy it every time. Pandemic: The Cure was a hit with family, and we won more than we lost.

Empire Builder capped off our 2014 10x10 challenge, and Kristen utterly trounced me. We started 2015's 10x10 challenge with Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles – Base Set and lost to some terrible luck. I'm still not sure I'm going to like my character as much as in past editions, but we shall see.

I got to play Formula D for the first time, and I really liked the improvements. Only played the basic version, but I'm intrigued to see what the advanced game would hold (though doubt I'll ever get to play it).

Kristen and I played Finca for the first time in quite a while (it was her Christmas present), and it's going to be a welcome addition to our 10x10 challenge.

I'm also still playing Dragon Age: Inquisition whenever I can carve out a minute. It's been insanely riveting.

EDIT: To my shame, I neglected to include games I got to play with Philip and with Travis & Jennifer from Philip & Aerial's wedding!

 8   Members Only x2
 10   Dominion x2

Two games of Members Only, which is just a fascinating forgotten game. I love betting on how many items are going to show up, and the added subtlety of sometimes you have to bet on things you're less sure about because that's where you need the points. And Dominion is always awesome sauce, of course.
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12. Board Game: Werewolf [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1546]
Board Game: Werewolf
Travis Dean
United States
Escondido
CA
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MANYx Mafia
3x Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game
2x *Arctic Scavengers
Arkham Horror
Dixit
Dixit: Journey
Race for the Galaxy
Roll for the Galaxy
Space Cadets

*new to me

Surprisingly, Arkham Horror hit the table at game night with something like 7 players and finished in 2-3 hours, and was actually a decent experience. I attribute all of this to having an experienced player who knows the rules and how to play (and was really good at not directing players in how to play). That person definitely wasn't me. I avoid this game like the plague because I don't play it enough to remember the rules. So I was very happy he was there to help make it a good experience.

We also ended the night with Arctic Scavengers. A 3-player game followed by a 2-player game. I hadn't read the rules yet, merely watched the shut up sit down video a month or two back. So we were learning from the rulebook. We played without the expansion, and misplayed the Sniper until halfway through the second time when I finally found FAQ online that outlined how to use it outside of skirmishes (not clear in the rulebook). The game was kind of interesting, but a little bland. I look forward to getting all the rules down and trying again with correct rules and expansions. But if it's still bland, I'll try to sell/trade it for about what I spent for it. Either way, it was still worth picking up to finally get it to the table.

For New Year's, we spent it with Jennifer's immediate family and friends. We played a couple games of Dixit, a few rounds of X-Wing, and lots and lots of Mafia. It was tons of fun! Oh, and we played the resistance which Jennifer's family fell in love with.



Jennifer and I also picked up several games since BGG.Con between Black Friday, Birthday, and Christmas. Just a few of what I can remember right now:
X-Wing base game
Golem Arcana
StarCraft Risk
Angry Birds Jenga Star Wars Darth Vader BBQFTW Really Long Name Yeah!!1eleven11!
Istanbul
Lady Alice
Airlines Europe
Space Cadets: Resistance is Mostly Futile
Nobody but us Chickens
India Rails
Cash n Guns second edition
Mage Wars
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13. Board Game: Kanban: Driver's Edition [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:166]
Board Game: Kanban: Driver's Edition
Matt C
United States
Ypsilanti
MI
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Huge game week for me. My younger brother is in town, and we have been logging a play or two a day, and have had three separate game days with other people. Great break from school at the moment.

Race for the Galaxy: Alien Artifacts
The Resistance: Avalon 2x
Carcassonne

Imperial 2030 (edit to fix, apparently I double-listed WoN)
Wealth of Nations
Puerto Rico

BANG! The Dice Game
Power Grid Deluxe: Europe/North America
Kanban: Driver's Edition

Some heavy hitters here, and more to come next week as well.

Bang! The Dice Game was much more a game with four players than it was with three. We played two rounds in quick succession while waiting for one more person. I can't see myself ever playing the card game again after playing this. Amusingly, the sheriff killed himself the second game when his FIVE arrows hit him from a raiding Indian band.

Power Grid: Deluxe Edition is a beautiful piece of art, and I love the new resources and coins. I played very badly here though, as in general it seems like the slight game tweaks push heavier and better plants faster than before. So, my typical strategy flopped miserably, and combined with a bad starting location, I took a very badly done last place.

Imperial 2030 is the game I bought for our group Secret Santa. The use-countries-and-buy-stocks was exactly what I had hoped for. The now-owner loves 18xx games, and I would highly recommend it for any euro player who does. Regarding my play, I played an India-South America pinch strategy, and managed to mid-game shifted India into a feeder position so that my South America power would blow past the other nations. This worked very effectively, and I came in a solid 1st place as a result. One particular round someone managed to someone else bought South America from under me, but it was right before Invest, which I did not have the money for, so it worked nicely, and then I took it back and taxed for more money. Great game.

Finally, Kanban took quite a long time to explain, but once we got going the roles made a lot of sense. We played Sandra the Mean Boss. I focused on training so as to avoid her ire. Then, about half. Way through the game I realized nobody was building green cars, so I snatched those blueprints and some parts and went to town, by the end of the game, I had tested three green designs, and had four green cars in my garage. This meant each of the four was worth about seven points at week-end. Nasty. I managed to win about 150-to-110-to-80-to-60. I suspect it will be hard to get to the table, but great game.


---------

From gallery of Epsilon_Balls


On a non game related note, my wife and I continue to grow our family of bicycles. This past week we celebrated our fifth anniversary, and bought ourselves road bikes. We have taken them out on small rides already, but can't wait for the spring to really tack on those miles. It also turns out that clip-in pedals are not as complicated as I originally thought they would be.
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14. Board Game: Spyrium [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:634]
Board Game: Spyrium
Fabrice Dubois
France
La Garenne Colombes
Hauts de Seine
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10 Android:Netrunner x6 (203 plays so far)
9 Spyrium x2 (19 plays so far)
9 Saint Petersburg x 1 (2 plays so far)
7 Seasons x1 (36 plays so far)
5 7 Wonders x1 (28 plays so far)

Android:Netrunner stay steady : i have reached the 200 FTF plays and i can tell you that it isn't about to stop because my buddy and me are so involved.

Spyrium : my two plays were with childs and wife. And they enjoy the game a lot (it is new to them) and i am very glad about that. I am always surprised by its average ranking here on BGG because i think that it is a really good and interesting game. I don't see what this game has less than other better ranked games.

On my mind (copyright captainraffi and charlest)
Games i will look at in 2015 :
Elysium
T.I.M.E Stories

About TV shows :
We have just finished Homeland 4. It was better than season 3. The last episode was meh and almost uninsteresting though.

Battlestar Galactica : We are at season 4, episode 6. Still good but some episodes are way too long and boring.

Star Gate Atlantis : I am at season 1, episode 16. Entertaining.

On the roadmap :
Gotham
Fargo
OZ (season 2)
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Raf Cordero
United States
Bolingbrook
Illinois
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Took the liberty of making the "looking forward to it" geeklist since McJarvis has stepped out of the Mafia. Looking forward to seeing what you guys are looking forward to!
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