I skimmed over the Working Lunch post I usually do as it ended up being a round of Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age, which I have talked about before. So I thought I'd combine it with some of the other gaming going on for a quick update.
Starting with Roll, Tom wanted a quick game and then requested Roll with the shipping. I wondered if it would be as quick as he'd like (sometimes it runs a little longer) but I had no need to worry, for this was the Game of the Workers. We all rolled a lot of them. And as a result we were quickly up to 6 or 7 cities (I was the only one who stuck at 6) and the monuments were then worked on at a prestigious rate. I got early Irrigation and Medicine and also got Preservation, along with Agriculture. Tom was first to get Medicine in fact, then got Irrigation and after a bunch of goods (including an Invasion), got Masonry. J got Irrigation after an early drought and then got hit by 2 Pestilences before she also got Medicine. She then struck upon the idea of taking Religion and trying to roll the Revolt, but it never came off (funny how when you are willing the skulls to show up, you just get more workers?). Tom got the Hanging Gardens double quick and later an Obelisk, I got the Obeslisk (before Tom!), the Great Wall. J was the monumental maker, getting the Great Pyramid for starters, then mopping up step pyramid, stone circle and temple, triggering the end. I had foreseen that, taking the Temple and the only development I could afford (Quarrying!). J got Commerce on her turn but it took all her goods to get it. Tom also got Commerce (and after all that, no-one took shipping). Somehow I got through the whole game without a disaster.
It was quite a whirlwind, with shenanigans to come, as both Tom and I miscounted our final scores. But J straightened us out:
Me: 16 dev + 19 mon - 0 dis = 35
J: 24 dev + 19 mon + 0 bon - 8 dis = 35
Tom: 23 dev + 12 mon + 4 bon - 8 dis = 31
with the tie-breaker (most goods) also a tie (at 0 goods!), J and I were joint winners. And well within the assigned time limits.
Meanwhile, my younger son has been getting me to play games with him after homework time. That sounds pretty all right with me. The first one he picked was Guess Who?, which he told me he was especilly good at because they play it in his 'before school' group. He did actually win our best-of-three, mostly because he picked out "bald" and then subsequently "bald" and "glasses". I am not sure where he got the inspiration for those choices.
Then he got me to play Ker Plunk. Even though it is one of those games that takes longer to set-up than play, there is still something inherently dramatic the way there is a sudden rush of marbles down into the bottom. And in this case, into my pile. And he was worried after he got the first two!
I then tried to enlist him and his brother into the game I got my eldest for his 11th birthday. As a train nut, I knew he would be well-disposed to Railways of the World: The Card Game and he was certainly enthusiastic. The younger one is less keen on trains and was more reluctant to play, but we got to it pretty fast and it plays smoothly, as long as you can keep everyone focused on the game at hand. Perhaps trying it before dinner was a bad move, but attention did flag about the mid-point - and then dissolved altogether when the neighbor kids came by, asking us to come round for play and food. So I put it all away, though my eldest did ask if we could finish the game sometime, so there is reason for hope.
And I liked it well enough anyway, so someone in the house will play with it.
The rest of the weekend was pretty board game free due to the large pile of mulch we are moving around the garden. Taming the weeds is a full time job around here. Meanwhile the boys charged rampantly through another of the 11th birthday presents, that being LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4. My wife and I also tried that out (after the kids were in bed, else we'd never get a go!). I love how the Lego games adapt their stories from the originals, with a large slice of humor, as well as the creativity to tell the story without dialogue! I like the improved 2-player experience in the Harry Potter game as well, as the 2 player are no longer quite so tied together (a problem in the Lego Star Wars game). And if Harry Potter has even half the staying power in kid entertainment that Star Wars has (and continues to have) then I will be well pleased.