GCL Phoenix 406: Hospitality and the Hobby (14 Oct 2018)
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
flag msg tools
admin
designer
badge
We always have time for the things we put first.
Avatar
Microbadge: LGBTQ allyMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I'm femaleMicrobadge: This is not a drill!Microbadge: Indigo Girls fan
Recommend
15 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
Welcome to the Phoenix Game Chat League!

If you stumbled upon this geeklist by accident or through your subscriptions, please read the GameChat League wiki page for information about what this is all about. We're glad to get to know visitors through constructive comments, but please leave the adding of items to members.


Active Phoenixes:
familygaming
grasa_total
indigopotter
John Rogers
karlfast - next week
Lowengrin
mirror33
rynelf
Tigrillo
woodnoggin

Always welcome to participate:
archivists, BennyD, Bruzza, chally, darker, Dormammu, Eeeville, enzo622, hawk-x-, Hawkeye77, JohnRayJr, judoka, leroy43, Morganza, Mr_Nuts, Muse23PT, ravenskana, Smintie, Taibi, TheRocketSurgeon, tjshields, topherr, Yokiboy
Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
  • [+] Dice rolls
1. Board Game: Host [Average Rating:5.32 Unranked]
Board Game: Host
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
flag msg tools
admin
designer
badge
We always have time for the things we put first.
Avatar
Microbadge: LGBTQ allyMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I'm femaleMicrobadge: This is not a drill!Microbadge: Indigo Girls fan
We don't have a game group right now, and it's pretty infrequent that we play with other people. But still, when I think about getting a game, or think about what games to keep on the shelf, I think about whether they might appeal to an undetermined third party, or whether someone might ask to play them. It's unlikely that Sam and I will get Ticket to Ride out to play ourselves, but someone may say, "Hey, I saw this game - do you have it?" We'll usually bring a game that we can easily teach to the cafe in case someone looks interested, and we want to bring them into a game.

That's unusual for a hobby. When someone buys golf clubs, they buy the ones they like. They don't worry if they are the right size or grip for someone else. If someone invites people over to watch Monday Night Football, you turn the tv on and watch what's on (maybe in this day and age of lots of sports channels, it's slightly different, but generally people have their team and it's understood that you're going to watch the game with that team. Or if you get invited to a Super Bowl party, you know you're watching the Super Bowl. )

If you're in a baseball league, you all show up to play baseball, there's no discussion. Same with bowling.

Our hobby has this strange added layer that often, not only do we have to figure out what we might enjoy, we have to think about what other people might enjoy/be willing to play. That plays out slightly differently for a game group versus Michael and S, but the idea is the same.

How much do you find this factors into your purchases and game planning? Do you buy something you're okay with, but that you think other people will like? Do you keep some games in case they are requested by others? Do you have a rotating game selection for a game group, or is it based on popularity, meaning some of your top choices may have a tougher time making it to the table? Are there games that you'd like to get, but don't because you don't see your gaming partner(s) wanting to play?
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
2. Board Game: Holiday! [Average Rating:6.65 Overall Rank:12056]
Board Game: Holiday!
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
flag msg tools
admin
designer
badge
We always have time for the things we put first.
Avatar
Microbadge: LGBTQ allyMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I'm femaleMicrobadge: This is not a drill!Microbadge: Indigo Girls fan
I know it's only mid-October, but holiday preparations are happening. Some holiday exchanges, like Thrifty Santa, have already launched. I've been making preparations behind-the-scenes for the BGG Christmas Card Exchange which I will probably launch this week. (I expect the main Secret Santa to be coming up this week as well, because BGG Con seems a couple of days early this year, so I think that will shift everything else earlier).

GCL Phoenix does a card exchange (send one, receive one. It can be store-bought. It can be a postcard! Just a little thing to get some mail.) Consider this the soft-launch, in case someone will be busy next week or so, but wants to be able to do it. I want to give a couple of weeks so that everyone has a chance to see it. I'll probably do the names a day or two before I get swamped with the big BGG exchange, so somewhere about Nov. 11th or 12th, haven't decided.

I've already gotten our holiday cards from Shutterfly (they had some good early sales) and custom address labels. I ordered one batch with one set of sales, then they had 10 free cards and a free set of address labels, so I ordered another set, and then 4 free sets of address labels, so I ordered some more. The early bird gets the discounts.

Are you an early planner for the holidays (Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc included). What sort of traditions do you have, what are you looking forward to? Anything on your list to Santa so far? Are you planning to do any of the various exchanges here on BGG?
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
3. Board Game: Rotation [Average Rating:5.60 Unranked]
Board Game: Rotation
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
flag msg tools
admin
designer
badge
We always have time for the things we put first.
Avatar
Microbadge: LGBTQ allyMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I'm femaleMicrobadge: This is not a drill!Microbadge: Indigo Girls fan
Karl - 21st October
Michael - 28th October
Adley - 4th November
Dave - 11th November
Nicolai - 18th November
Morten - 25th November
Rich - 2nd December

Alison - 9th December
Carol - 16th December
John - 23rd December
Karl - 30th December
Michael - 6th January


If anyone would like to be back in rotation, or a one-week limited engagement tour, please let me know.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
4. Board Game: The Quest for El Dorado [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:180] [Average Rating:7.59 Unranked]
Board Game: The Quest for El Dorado
United States
Wurtsboro
NY
flag msg tools
admin
designer
badge
We always have time for the things we put first.
Avatar
Microbadge: LGBTQ allyMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I'm femaleMicrobadge: This is not a drill!Microbadge: Indigo Girls fan
Yesterday morning I wanted to try one of the new games we'd gotten at the Barnes & Noble sale, El Dorado.

The board is quite large

Board Game: The Quest for El Dorado


and two-sided, with some extra pieces, so it seems like there is good variation possible in setup.

Basically, you're playing Dominion to race explorers across the jungle. In 2p, you need to get both of your explorers to the end first.

The market of cards starts out with some that can be bought right away, and when someone buys the last of that card, there is an open spot. When someone buys another card, the rest of that card moves forward to the open spot, and that card is now available on the market. Not all cards may become available during the game.

I had lots of gold cards (to buy cards) early on, and was able to buy some good cards. But then I was too reluctant to thin them out, and they didn't help me to travel at the end, when I really just needed to race to the finish line. That took playing through a game to see the arc of what cards I needed, when.

We don't generally play a lot of deckbuilders (mostly Star Realms on our phones, in the past), but this one has the board part that changes the flavor enough to be interesting. I plan to keep it for us, at least for a while.

We used our BGG silicone cardholders for this, and they worked very well.

Later we went to the game café, and learned to play Gaia. The first game we didn't have much of a plan, but just sort of did what our cards let us do. In the second game, we tried to think it through, and ended up slowing down the game (it was also more distracting in the public setting). I didn't feel like I played an optimal game. It reminded me of Queendomino, or at least, similar enough that if one likes one, they'll probably like the other. This one probably has a shorter shelf-life, but it deserves at least another try at home.

We also dusted off Burgundy Dice, last played in January. I think it would have been played more except I put it off to the side in a bin with little games, and we just didn't see it to grab it. So now that we've dusted it off, I might leave it in our game bag, as it's a very good café game. The owner of the café was very interested in it, but it was busy enough that she couldn't really sit down and try it out.

My two main wishes at the moment are

Board Game: Caverna: Cave vs Cave – Era II


and

Board Game: Santa Maria: American Kingdoms


which are expansions, not even full games.

Pulsar 2849 has been popping up here and there, and I'm curious but undecided about it as a gift for Sam. Maybe after Spiel there will be some things at CoolStuff that catch my eye. I have a couple of things tucked away that I've picked up on good sales here and there, so I'm not starting from scratch, but I don't feel like I have a 'main gift' for Sam yet.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
5. Board Game: Small City [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:2164]
Board Game: Small City
The Mirror
United States
New York
flag msg tools
Avatar
Microbadge: Tea drinkerMicrobadge: I eat my vegetables!Microbadge: I enjoy the silenceMicrobadge: 18xx fanMicrobadge: (59th Rule of Acquisition) "Free advice is seldom cheap" - Quark
Board Game: Small City
 7.5   Small City
Well, this past Monday’s play was interesting. First of all, I had to teach 3 new players after years off. These rules do *not* stick well as far as teaching goes. I basically just read through the whole rule book. Relearning them wasn’t difficult, but there really are a lot of edge cases. They mostly make sense. Not unlike most games that I own where you’re playing against the game, assuming the most difficult take on any given rule is usually right. I vacillated during play between having fun, and feeling bored which I was surprised about. Could be the length of time committed to the whole venture, with a long teach followed by a 2-3 hour game can feel pretty exhausting. The spacial puzzle is more interesting than Antiquity, and the game is more playful as a rule. If you’re playing poorly in Antiquity (and honestly even when you’re not) there’s this impending dread as the walls close in around you. With Small City, there’s a detriment to poor pollution management, and it can prevent you from winning, but also, while puzzle excellence is a broader puzzle, you can play poorly and keep feeling like there’s something to do. I feel like when I first played Small City I found that to be more of a plus than it is feeling as I write it now. Regardless, both Small City and Antiquity have been recently knocked down a peg. I suspect that Small City is closer to the chopping block if for no other reason than the fact that the box is physically very large compared to Antiquity, and that it’s a bear to teach. I suppose I could also ask my game group what they think…

Board Game: Supply Lines of the American Revolution: The Northern Theater, 1775-1777
 N/A   Supply Lines of the American Revolution: The Northern Theater, 1775-1777
This is the first game designed by Tom Russell that I've played. I’ve been interested in Hollandspiele since the early days as I was following Cole Wehrle in the wake of his wonderful BGG posts and Pax Pamir, but as I'm not on the Winsome list, I haven't stumbled across any of Tom's ditties. My experience was anxious and tense (granted Friday and Saturday were both 15 hour work days, so maybe I’m just wiped) but there is simply something about maneuver-heavy Waros/Weuros that seem to rub my mind the wrong way. Too much clear strategic staging which gets my logical brain spinning and thinking about strategic and tactical play, but just a weird mess of randomness that has me feeling like I can’t prepare for anything. As this game is smaller in scope than other similar psyche-offenders (Maria and Sekigahara are big ones for me), it’s easy to see how one can get good enough to mitigate it quite a bit in Supply Lines. (For a while I suspected that Root would also fall into this problematic category, but I’m starting to think that it’s somehow sidestepping this, but I digress!) I suppose that the issue with all of the aforementioned games (aside from Root) is that I don’t have fun in the process of getting good enough at them to learn to mitigate the luck. Innovation is another one that I started off feeling similarly about (even though it’s not a Weuro/Waro), but due to it’s quick playtime I was able to kind of push through. Curious to play this again, and Sekigahara as well, also Wir sind das Volk!…maybe I’m on the verge of a Weuro/Waro renaissance?

***


TRADES: Both Pax Pamir & the Khyber Knives expansion left my collection this week in a direct trade for Neue Heimat and Mü & Lots More. Haven’ t had the opportunity to try either, but I suspect I’ll be pretty happy in the long run with this one. At the very least the medium run.

___________________________________________________________________________

Unplayed games of note: 1849, 18CZ, Balance of Powers, Colonial Twilight: The French-Algerian War, 1954-62, For Sale, Mü & Lots More, Napoleon’s Triumph, Neue Heimat, Rolling Stock, Shadows of Malice and Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective

Only played once, games of note: 1714: The Case of the Catalans, 1846, 1860, Here I Stand, Indonesia, and Revolution: The Dutch Revolt 1568-1648
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
6. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:53]
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy
Dave Peters
United States
Belmont
California
flag msg tools
Powers:Coleridge:Milton: Faith...must be, if anything, a clear-eyed recognition of the patterns and tendencies, to be found in every piece of the world's fabric, which are the lineaments of God.
badge
That's Tim Powers' fictional Samuel Coleridge "quoting" John Milton in _The Anubis Gates_.
Avatar
Microbadge: Choir geekMicrobadge: Black Lives MatterMicrobadge: Antiquity fanMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: I aspire to Curmudgeon Level Eric
Scorecard for the Week/Month/Year as of 13Oct2018:

3/5/298 plays of 3/5/162 total games, with 4/5/35 expansions employed.
Plays with 4/11/124 distinct opponents.

0/0/22 games acquired (plus 0/0/14 expansions.)
0/0/1 games sold/traded (plus 0/0/0 expansions.)
0/0/11 games ordered (plus 0/0/0 expansions.)
Orders for 1 games and 0 expansions still outstanding.

With son #2:
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: New Worlds Promo
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: Rebel vs Imperium
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: The Brink of War
Board Game: Race for the Galaxy: The Gathering Storm

images by Surya, chaddyboy_2000, W Eric Martin(x2) and Surya

1x _10_ Race for the Galaxy (277 total plays) (with New Worlds, and the first arc)

Enjoyed this one, even if I'm a bit out of practice. (My recent plays with the Keldon AI have used the Xeno cards, so there may have been a few synergies I'd missed on the way by.) Our tableau scores were pretty close, but he'd left me all the goals. I rather expect both of us would do better if we managed another play in the next week or two.

Board Game: Finca (2018 Edition)

image by CinCin

1x _7_ Finca (2018 Edition)

Fun: I've now tried this at each of the player counts, and it works pretty nicely at each of them.

This was my first try with El Razul: and I was surprised to discover that the most significant portion of the expansion was the "You may move another player's farmer" token: I was guessing the El Razul standee would noticeably mutate things, but he didn't.

Perhaps most amusing, son #2 was gracious in trying the new game (he prefers not learning new games, if given the choice) and also admitted that it was close to his personal aesthetics (not too long; a reasonably broad control surface - so that one's move isn't telegraphed by the game; and with the opportunity for the occasional cleverness.)


With the Wednesday night gang:
Board Game: Brass: Lancashire

image by cuazzel

1x _9_ Brass (38 total plays)

This, I think, was a kindness to me. I love Brass (but I've also played it a lot more than the others - roughly an order of magnitude more, in fact!) So I've a bit of an advantage.

The others played distinctly better in this instance than in our play back in May; so things are looking positive for the future.


Owned-and-unplayed: 0 (0/0)
Owned-and-played-once: 99 (0/-0)

Outlook for the week: I get to hear son #2 sing (community concert in the park; he has a lead in one of the songs.) Another three choir practices. But no week-long training session to herd; so I might have a bit more bandwidth for games. Likely something with son #2, and very probably something with the lunch crew and on Wednesday Night.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
7. Board Game: Indonesia [Average Rating:7.85 Overall Rank:219]
Board Game: Indonesia
A lot of people have this week off in Denmark as it was traditionally the week where school kids had to help in the fields with the potato harvest. I still have to work (so I can take three days off next week to go to Essen) but most of my colleagues do not so last week was rather busy. Thursday evening Lærke and I celebrated my birthday by having dinner at a Michelin starred restaurant here in town and it was a great meal. That is doubly nice because we plan to do our wedding reception there next year. Since they’re not normally open before dinner it’s even reasonably priced because it’s just extra income for them.

The weather has been really nice here so Saturday I drove down to the Wadden Sea to do a bit of bird watching on my own. Due to the wind direction and high pressure weather many Sibirian migrating species have flown this way instead of southwards so I wasn’t the only one to have that idea. The island I went to had 4 rarities present out of which I found one (Yellow-browed Warbler) but the walk I had with a fellow birdwatcher was very nice and we were the only ones to find this one.

Board Game: Time of Crisis: The Roman Empire in Turmoil, 235-284 AD

 9   Time of Crisis x2 (16 all-time)
The first play was finishing the latest online play against Martin and two more. This was another game that finished in the 8th round but this time Martin hadn’t screamed ahead the rest of us. For once I was in the running till the very end (when Martin of course jumped ahead by 5 points for a win) but Martin timed setting up himself as a pretender emperor perfectly on the same turn where I had a pretty poor hand so I couldn’t quite reach enough points to end the game there: Martin was then 1 point away from ending it (and being emperor) and I was 2 points away. Next turn, he had a monster turn where he got points both for being pretender and becoming emperor plus fighting off some barbarian that had blundered across the border. That left me with a great hand but not many options to catch up with him. I need to win the two battles that were possible and then hope the last player would try and and beat one of my armies but fail. In the end I did not even win the easy battle against a barbarian. The second play was face to face against Nicolai and two more. A learning game for the other three so I wasn’t quite sure about how to take on the teacher role but I decided to give them some general advice in the beginning on tempo, strategy etc but then let them play whichever way they wanted and then talk about it afterwards. They may even come up with something that we haven’t in my other plays. In the end, they did not but they did learn that turtling despite my warning isn’t a good idea and that buying lots of yellow cards might not be a great idea, especially not in the first rounds. Figuring out when to pick which cards is something that comes with experience but I expect we’ll have a better game next time. I won by a landslide; not only because of my experience but also because I was extremely lucky with dice rolls against my milita and governor in Pannonia over 2 rounds where I should not have been able to hold on to it. When I lost it the region was swarming with Franks and Alamanni so I didn’t mind anyway.


Board Game: Obsession

 7   Obsession (6 all-time)
Friday afternoon, Lærke and I pulled out Obsession to try it with the Expert Variant and play the long version of the game. It did make it more balanced but it did not change our play experience much as it is more because of theme and setting than balance we like it. That said, we’ll probably keep using the variant with the Brontë variant on top when we play two-player so the building row is changed after each courtship.

Board Game: Azul

 8   Azul x2 (35 all-time)
We had not played Azul much recently but Lærke asked for it Sunday morning after a nice breakfast. She kept getting minus points apart from the last round so I was ahead all game until that last round she had set up perfectly to score a lot of points so she beat me handsomely. This of course called for a rematch where once again I went ahead quite quickly but this time I had noticed how many points she would be able to score so I went for a rush strategy and ended the game before all the big points would roll in for her.

Board Game: Indonesia

 8   Indonesia (3 all-time)
I then drove out to one of the sleeper villages outside of Aarhus and met up with 3 others to play Indonesia. I had played twice before but it was a long time ago, two had never played and the last player had played 5 times online. He of course won but it was extremely close for the other three of us. We probably didn’t go for as many mergers as more experienced players would but we still had a lot of fun with it. I had a very nice shipping company that would ferry lots of my goods so that was of course included in a merger suggestion and I definitely should have tried harder to get it. I expected the game would have ended the following round but it went for one more which meant I lost plenty of money on the deal. The game was very much a Siap Faji competition between 3 players and the one that came out on top of that battle was the winner. Scores were 2183-1655-1632-1630!


Board Game: Lost Cities: Rivals

 7  Lost Cities: Rivals NEW!
We ended a bit earlier than expected so we had time to try my impulse buy present for myself: LC:R. Martin and Hanibal especially had sung its praises and I completely understand why. It’s a very portable easy to explain card version of Ra basically set in the Lost Cities universe. It does have some of the LC tension because the deck is split up into 4 draw stacks where the collected bidding amount is spit out equally among the players The Great Zimbabwe style. Do you bid for that card now or let someone else get it and hope you can get more of the in-between cards cheaply later in the round? Do you try and get the others to spend all their money early so you can stuff cheaply or do you go for those good cards when they are there – others might take them or even trash them. I still like Ra and Lost Cities better but this is a great small game when you want a bit of each.



Games that left my collection this month: Nothing yet.

Games that entered my collection this month: Acquire, Storm over Arnhem, Turning Point: Stalingrad plus its expansion and Lost Cities: Rivals.

Unplayed games in my collection: Tahuantinsuyu, 1860: Railways on the Isle of Wight, Sword of Rome, El Alamein, Continental Divide, Populi Turolii, Kaivai, Napoleon's Triumph, てづま師 (Tezuma Master), Fading Glory, Bonaparte at Marengo, Acquire, Storm over Arnhem and Turning Point: Stalingrad.
9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
8. Board Game: dude [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:10364] [Average Rating:5.79 Unranked]
Board Game: dude
Alison Mandible
United States
Somerville
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
Avatar
Microbadge: Modern abstract games fanMicrobadge: My pronouns are she/herMicrobadge: Tash-Kalar: Arena of Legends fanMicrobadge: FeminismMicrobadge: I speak Swedish
Board Game: Macao
Board Game: Tintas
Board Game: Neutron
Board Game: dude


 9   Macao (10 all-time)

I taught this to my Charterstone group and then played the most office-focused game of it I've ever played. The one thing I've found odd about Macao is that it seems like offices should be the key to the game and yet my intuition always tells me it's not worth it. So this time I was pretty aggressive about trying them out, and even with an engine producing a minimum of three coins every turn, I was a close second.

 9   Neutron x2 (9 all-time)
 9   Tintas (12 all-time)
 7?   dude x3 NEW!

This was surprisingly good, in basically the way I hoped-- trying to emphasize what your card sounds like often can have the perverse effect of making it sound more like a different one. And the promise of it being fun and pleasant to be very quickly getting into sync with another person over and over again worked out too. Not sure how many times I will ever play it?
9 
 Thumb up
0.01
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
9. Board Game: Near and Far [Average Rating:7.83 Overall Rank:144] [Average Rating:7.83 Unranked]
Board Game: Near and Far
Lo
Canada
Victoria
British Columbia
flag msg tools
Avatar
Microbadge: 1825 fanMicrobadge: 1853 fanMicrobadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: GrognardMicrobadge: Napoleonic Wars enthusiast
Monday Evening with S and JT
Board Game: Carson City

 7   Carson City x1 Out of the Dust! (11 all-time)
S and I hadn't played this one in over five years and it took a friend of ours to suggest it. Of course, it's a much better game with more players, so it's not that surprising that we haven't played it just the two of us. And, honestly, even with three, it's not as tight as it could be (but maybe we should have used the river side to make it tighter).

In spite of the openness of the play and the few interactions we had, I did enjoy dusting Carson City off. Although, there's something about adding up the income each turn that puts me off. While it's something I'm completely used to doing with an Series: 18xx game, it's just not the norm in a mid-weight Euro.


Evenings with S
Board Game: Near and Far

 7   Near and Far x5 New!
Among other things, this game has turned my perception of S's preferred play style upside down. I always knew she liked engine-builders with not much player interaction/screwage, but I always assumed her aversion to losing was always stronger than the enjoyment she got from creating and running an engine. Turns out I've got it backwards.

When I rushed the end game of our Sunday night game and we didn't complete all seven quests, we got into a long discussion in which she pointed out that by not completing the seven quests, I denied one of us from getting some experience towards improving our characters in the campaign. For her, part of the interest in the game was building a permanent (though minor) engine from the "talents" that experience brings. That this character development was more important to her than winning or losing the game.

So after some discussion we agreed that we'd house-rule the campaign so that neither of us can place our last camp until all the quests have been completed.


The Week Ahead

Last Saturday, K was supposed to come over for our monthly Massive Darkness romp, but he wasn't feeling well. So we've pushed it to this Saturday evening. Which means I'm double-booked for the day as that afternoon I've a four-player game of 1830 lined up.

Unplayed games of note in shrink: Friday, Sakura Arms, Maria, The U.S. Civil War, Francis Drake, German Railways, Tikal and Revolution: The Dutch Revolt 1568-1648.

Unplayed games not in shrink: Mottainai.

6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
10. Board Game: A Feast for Odin: The Norwegians [Average Rating:8.98 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.98 Unranked]
Board Game: A Feast for Odin: The Norwegians
Yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuusssssssssssssssssssssssss.

I have my hands on the rulebook PDF, and the expansion looks better than I expected.

On the other hand, Caverna: The Forgotten Folk looks like $44 for 8 mats and 32 tiles. What the heck?!
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
11. Board Game: Root [Average Rating:8.09 Overall Rank:31]
Board Game: Root
John Rogers
United States
Yakima
WA
flag msg tools
badge
Receive with simplicity everything that happens to you.
Avatar
Microbadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."
This weekend Nicole and I took the boys to see my folks and their cousins for Jack’s birthday. By day it was all corn mazes and pumpkin patches. By night it was all Root all the time. And there were some surprise twists involved...

Game 1
Took just under 2hrs. Players included mom (birds), dad (cats) and I (alliance). My folks were shocked with how easy it was. I built it up as quite difficult but they were ready and fared quite well, picking it up very quickly. It was my first play as the alliance and I thought I had it in the bag, building a wave of sympathy toward revolutions across clearings.

However, I neglected to build up officers and as a result mom WON even after a devestating turn (clearings nuke by yours truly plus a revolt) left her with zero roosts and -5pts! I was one turn away as the Alliance (26pts) and dad’s cats (22pts) had a kingmaker shot at the end but he failed to kill off mom’s birds (she played an ambush which pretty much sealed it). Overall they quite liked it and were eager to try it again.

Game 2
So we did! This game featured Mom and Dad again as the birds and cats respectively with Jordan joining in as the alliance and my wife (who abandoned her faction to me after a single turn) as the Vagabknd. I took the new-to-me-Otters.

The alliance got off to a great start scoring 7pts right away. He had a great opening hand and supporters combo, but he would eventually stall out with folks targeting his easy-to-destroy sympathy. Final score 19.

Dad had a much harder time this go around. His cats just couldn’t get going as both the birds and otters were constantly disrupting his network and harassing his sawmills. He later became a common whipping boy for the vagabond and otters. Final score 14pts.

The birds fell into turmoil on the first turn and in the end would fall a total of 4x. Even still, mom held her own and learning from the last game, would never run into the zero roosts problem. She had a very good shot at winning but abandoned her 22pts in favor of a dominance attempt (holding opposing corners). She almost got there but Jordan’s pesky mice, barely surviving her avian onslaught, revolted in a corner clearing and blew her 5 birds and roost sky high. Mom was out and not pleased.

Meanwhile my otters fared quite well throughout most of the game, selling their services and wares to all the factions at least once, but especially to the cats and birds. Cards and riverboats were very popular and the otters were able to use their funds to build all their posts (though half were blown up by the end). As a bonus they got into a couple of key skirmishes with the vagabond before just coming up short. Final score 28pts.

And they would have won too if wasn’t for that dirty little vagabond. Nicole played her first turn and then was pulled away by family dynamics (she was much needed). I took over expecting her return and after a few turns just continued to play her hand. I played the vagabond openly and took the opportunity to teach the faction and discuss potential moves. That was kinda cool.

But as I said, I thought the otters had it. A late brawl with the otters left the vagabond limping about with half of their items broken and exhausted. There they were, dragging about the forest, seemingly unable to complete quests and without the swords needed to stage a major offensive. In a last ditch effort they crawled into a nearby clearing to explore a ruin in hopes of finding something that may help. To all of our surprise they found a second boot which just so happened to be in a clearing matching a quest that they could complete for the win.

I was shocked. We were all shocked. But there it was.

Overall everyone enjoyed their play (including Jordan). Mom felt she improved, dad enjoyed seeing just how much two more factions added, and Jordan (who doesn’t game much) felt it reminded him of Risk but way more interesting. Honestly I couldn’t be more happy with how it all worked out. Players seemed to get it and did so quickly and everyone had a noticeably good time.

I thought Root was slowing down. But it may just be getting started.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
12. Board Game: Root [Average Rating:8.09 Overall Rank:31]
Board Game: Root
Rich P
United Kingdom
Sheffield
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
I didn't know what to do with my UberBadge, so I left it as a GeekBadge.
badge
Planning...
Avatar
Microbadge: GameChat League - Phoenix Division: "Like a phoenix rising from the ashes..."Microbadge: A Study in Emerald fanMicrobadge: Built to Spill fanMicrobadge: Age of Steam fanMicrobadge: The 7th Continent
Last week's plays:

|9| Ricochet Robots
-8.5- Vikings
-8- The Castles of Burgundy (+2nd; 5th expansions)
-8- Gloomhaven (x4)
-7- Root
-6- Sagrada

Kate and I are evenly matched at Ricochet Robots, so the tiebreaker rule comes into play on most rounds. Often, the fact that one of us has announced a number leads the other to find the same solution shortly afterwards. It's like solving crosswords clues – somehow they're easier when you know your friend has just solved it. I guess the sneaky strategy to use in that case is to announce a large number to set the timer going, then announce your actual, smaller guess just as the time is running out. We play friendlier than that, though. This time, we were tied at 8 points each going into the final round and I managed to spot the solution first. This game has the advantage of being playable even when you are trapped beneath a sleeping baby.

The Vikings plays continue to come thick and fast. This time it was a three-player game, which is my favoured count because it allows everyone to be the start player twice. I prioritised fishermen, since surprisingly few of them were coming out of the bag. Tim and Kate were punished for not feeding their Vikings sufficiently, but for Kate it didn't matter because she had such a good income engine that she was able to convert a lot of money into points at the end to win.

Castles of Burgundy is a bit like comfort food for me and Kate. Pretty close this time, but the bonus tile for different types of goods sold proved decisive for me again.

Tim and I continued exploring Gloomhaven. He's enjoying the combos he's made possible with his latest character (Three Spears), while I levelled Sun up to 9 so it's almost time to retire her. In our last scenario, we came to a sticky end in a grove full of Oozes. We had upped the difficulty level to Very Hard for the previous few scenarios, to provide more challenge (and more loot) but that turned out to be a mistake for the Oozing Grove. Turns out it's reputed to be one of the toughest scenarios in the game, we found out afterwards. We'll have to retry it at a lower difficulty level because it unlocks new content upon completion, so we can't just ignore it.

Kate wanted to try Sagrada so Becky brought it over and taught. I'd played it once before and it's pleasant enough. It's a fairly solo puzzle, though, there's little opportunity to mess with your opponents. I happen to like these sorts of spatial awareness challenges, so I'm happy to play it from time to time.

Root was my first play without using the walkthrough. I was randomly dealt the Marquise and was glad to try a faction I hadn't yet played. Kate was the Vagabond again and with my recent win as the Woodland Alliance fresh in her mind, she made sure to stifle that factions growth from the outset. This was a bit harsh on Matt, who had never played them before. Still, he managed to get all three bases down at one point, before having two of them destroyed by the Vagabond or my cats. Diarmuid was the Eyrie and fell into turmoil early on while still getting the hang of them. He struggled to draw enough cards to expand his decree quickly, let alone have any spare for crafting. It's hard to see how the Eyrie can score well without the Vagabond giving them cards, and where's the incentive to do that? I crafted a couple of items I knew the Vagabond needed for her quests and she took the bait. I was a bit worried that it would give her too much of an edge, but lacking a bag, she had to discard some items, which slowed her progress.

After a while, it was clear that either the Vagabond or my cats would win – there was a large VP gap between us and the other two. It seemed hard to stop the Vagabond because attacking her doesn't give much reward and barely slowed her down. She never had to waste a turn retreating into the forest to repair, as she had her own hammer. She even made clever use of the repair ability to mend a damaged sword, flipping it and enabling another attack that turn. However, she was drawing a target on herself with all her attacks and I was able to fly under the radar. Kate could win on her next turn, but I beat her to it by crafting and building for the last few points.

Matt had played the Marquise before and knew how close I was to winning, but he had been beaten down so much by the Vagabond that he didn't feel like hurting me and letting her win, so he retaliated against her. A bit kingmaker, perhaps, but one of us was going to win and he couldn't stop both of us. I've been looking at a few BGG threads on how to control a powerful Vagabond and the advice seems to be for everyone to turn hostile, denying her points for donating cards. But in our games, Kate has been getting most of her points from hostile factions, by repeatedly attacking them, so I don't see how that helps. Sure, it slows her movement down by making it cost more to enter hostile clearings, but she doesn't need to travel far to find someone to attack, usually her free Slip each turn is sufficient. Is the answer to never craft, so she can't easily obtain useful items? Well then you're not interacting with a big part of the game and most of the cards might as well be blank, so that's no fun.

I'm not sure this game will become a favourite locally. There's a bit too much "he's winning – attack him!", "no she's winning – attack her!" for my liking. I had quite enough of that playing multiplayer Magic at university and one of the appeal of Euro games was to get away from that. In terms of asymmetric conflict games, it's fairly similar to Chaos in the Old World, actually. Root's setting makes it easier to get to the table but I prefer the Warhammer World to a nondescript woodland and recall having more fun with CitOW. It's been a few years since I last played it, so maybe I would think differently today, but Root is making me want to revisit that older title.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}