$10.00
Games Played at Gamescape North Game Night in San Rafael 2/23/12
Apple Paul

California
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Lots of fun and games at Gamescape North's Board Game Night last night. (Starting a thumb drive here.)

Board Game Night takes place every Thursday night at the San Rafael, California game store, 1225 Fourth Street, from 6 - 11 PM.

Everyone is welcome. meeple

The games that were played last night? Check them out below...

Feel free to offer your comments (and thumbs up if you like the game!) for any of these games, even if you missed the action last night.
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1. Board Game: In the Year of the Dragon [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:137]
Apple Paul

California
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First time playing this game for Tim, myself, and Tim's visiting dad. This is an unusual game, and after one play, I am not exactly sure where I stand on this game. On the one hand, Year of the Dragon really feels original and interesting. Thematically, the game works pretty well. The game mechanics are reasonably easy, and the play time is relatively short.

On the other hand, this game is fiddly for first timers, and the overall ambiance of this game does not feel particularly happy, not by the way, that all games should feel "happy." I sense a certain somber spirit to this game. (As one friend said about this game: this game wants to kick your a** and let you know that life is rough.)

It is interesting to reflect upon the growing body of work of Stefan Feld, undeniably one of the most interesting and innovative board game designers out there at the moment. When I think about Feld's creations, I sense a sort of progression in spirit and confidence with each one. Consider his yearly output of late: Notre Dame (2007), Year of the Dragon (2007), Macao (2009), Luna (2010), Castles of Burgundy(2011), and Trajan (2011).

With Notre Dame and Year of the Dragon, it is almost as if Feld's first few designs were a bit more somber in their outlook and feel. They feel Fall-Winter to me. (Notre Dame feels too gloomy for me; I don't like it at all.)

Macao and Luna feel more Spring to me, with a cheery blossoming of game play possibilities. Macao is pretty impressive. Luna is wow, just wow, original and quirky as all get out.

Then, with Castles of Burgundy, my goodness, Feld has pulled out all the stops, all restraints, and produced a game that just overflows with Summer abundance, zillions of ways to score points in that game. Perhaps too much scoring? Hey, why argue with having fun scoring, and scoring, then scoring some more? Castles of Burgundy looks like a huge success as it rises in the BGG rankings...fast. And Trajan? I have yet to play it...but I understand it is rollicking...as something of a combination of Mancala and a Euro.

So...Year of the Dragon...hmmmmmmm. zombie
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2. Board Game: Diplomacy [Average Rating:7.09 Overall Rank:354]
Apple Paul

California
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Yoshi, Pete, Bill, Chris, Jessa, Peter and Andre are doing their best to remain friends after repeatedly backstabbing each other in the world of Diplomacy.

Alas, as is typically the case, Austria-Hungary was the first country to be eliminated from the game last night, thus giving Andre the ability to immediately begin plotting for how he is going to backstab better in his NEXT Diplomacy game. Friends, friends, bwahaha...

Next to go? Likely France and Italy. Sorry Bill and Pete. Then, as the game goes on...well...all I can say is that England is going to be there with its fleet. I am not sure England is going to win, but it's going to have lots of fun watching friends become enemies, and participating in a few double crossings, and maybe even a triple crossing or two.

Moral of the story Diplomacy players? Play England and build lots of fleets. Or play Germany or Russia and for gods sake, make some powerful alliances that last. As for Austria Hungary? Not much I can do. I know: player elimination is an established no-no in game design. The designers of Diplomacy promised not to have player elimination in their game...then they double crossed us...and included it! *%$#@!

This is a multi-week game. It goes...ahem...on...and ahem...on...

Yipes. Get me England on the phone...let's talk.
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3. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:30] [Average Rating:7.78 Unranked]
Apple Paul

California
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Chad and others played I think...
 
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4. Board Game: Tsuro [Average Rating:6.68 Overall Rank:636]
Apple Paul

California
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Played this with Tim and Tim's dad. It's short and...uhm...short...and uhm short. But so what? With apologies to Tsuro lovers, but I have had my fill of Tsuro. Pasta anyone?
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5. Board Game: China [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:403]
Apple Paul

California
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Marc, Liz, Tim and Tim's dad played. They all liked the game. I would like to try it at some point. Looks basically interesting.
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6. Board Game: Galaxy Trucker [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:85]
Apple Paul

California
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Alisa, Wy and others played this I believe.
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7. Board Game: Catan [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:156]
Apple Paul

California
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Lots of fun playing Settlers. I'll trade you some wheat...
 
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8. Board Game: Blood Bowl: Team Manager – The Card Game [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:167]
Apple Paul

California
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Brian and others played...
 
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9. Board Game: Axis & Allies Miniatures [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:1686]
Apple Paul

California
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10. Board Game: Wits & Wagers [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:361]
Apple Paul

California
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Chad, Jesse, Joe and others played. Place your bets...
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