The Ross-on-Wye Boardgamers

Beer and Boardgames at The Plough Inn (formerly the Prince Of Wales, formerly the White Lion). "It's not F-ing Monopoly, alright?!"
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Friday 31st January - Anyone for Tennish?

Ben Bateson
United Kingdom
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Oi! Hands off...
Microbadge: Keyflower fanMicrobadge: Agricola fanMicrobadge: I put components in separate Ziploc bagsMicrobadge: Game Group OrganizerMicrobadge: I support the Iron!
On February 2nd, 2010, we sat down for the first time to play games. It's fair to say a decade has flown by, many fellow gamers have come and gone, tastes in gaming have changed. But one thing has remained constant throughout, and I promised Tony that he would have a special mention in this anniversary blog post...

From gallery of ousgg

What bell-end parked like that?

Ian had done the club proud, arriving early and strewing the place with balloons, crisps and other goodies. He was playtesting the Rome/Tapestry thing with Tony and Peter but they graciously packed it away when everyone else turned up. Tony and John then spent the opening half-hour commemorating the club's 10th birthday by behaving like twats, but eventually they packed that in too, and we decided to play some games.

Stone Age was always likely to be a shoe-in as that was the first game that the club ever played. Becky rounded up John, Dave and Gary and managed to beat them all handily. Much embarrassment was forthcoming after they ignored the advice of 'not letting Becky get all the cards'.

The other table was a chunky five-hander, and we opened with a brisk game of Senators or 'the game which Ben would have played better by not doing anything', as it is becoming known. Well, this time I didn't actually sink into fewer than my five starting points, but it was still all a bit inept, and Tony - in between jokes about Wood and Touching Cloth - won yet again. I'm sure it's all just luck, you know.

Our main event was Tin Goose, set up on the sly while I was topping up drinks. Tony delivered the rules with all manner of gaps and inconsistencies and then had the temerity to get grumpy when I wanted to clarify whether 'not all the same' was the same thing as 'all different' (as I suspected, it isn't the same, but was I allowed to play the correct rules?). Gerv quickly built up a hugely unsafe, but complete, squadron of planes, and I abandoned domestic shipping altogether in favour of the lucrative overseas market. Ian saved all his money, Pete bought nearly everything in Phase 2, and Tony leveraged his last-turn advantage to play some nasty stuff at the end. But no-one could catch up with Gerv, the only one over $200,000 at the end.

To be frank, I didn't think much to Tin Goose. Working out valuations in the opening rounds is little more than a lottery, the whole thing is heavily dependent on turn order (some sort of varying turn order mechanism would make the auctions exponentially better), and your strategy will obviously be dictated by your hand of cards rather than optimistically guessing what the other players will play. Tony is full of scorn for Airlines Europe but has never managed to enunciate precisely why. But it's a no-brainer for me; Airlines Europe is much the superior game.

The other table had polished off Stone Age and Modern Art and were now engaged in Wingspan (Becky was later heard to echo my comments about Dave's seeming inability to understand this otherwise simple game). Given that the Knizia auction classic was our other 'founding' game, it seemed disrespectful not to have a go ourselves. Given it was their debut play, Ian and Peter donned some pretty convincing foreign accents (German and American respectively) and named paintings in true perverse style. It had felt like a tug-of-war between Tony and I throughout all three rounds, so - in an effort to get ahead - I paid over the odds for a painting from Gerv near the end. Critical mistake - this allowed Gerv to overtake us both for the win! What a brilliant game...

We closed, all previous dickheadery forgotten (but still recorded here for posterity) with an eight-handed Dobble. Ian was tentative, but earned the biggest cheer of the evening when he comprehensively Hot Potatoed a winning Gerv.
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