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 20th March - A Hatful of Skype

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!
I am likely to pull through the pandemic due to being at least a week ahead of the UK Government on everything. Although we have four guinea pigs who would be frankly better than Boris Johnson at anticipating what's going to happen in the future. They always know when it's going to rain.

Anyway, we are all homebound, but not down and out, oh no! For we have Skype, and we have boiteajeux and BGArena and yucata (which I've finally managed to stop Tony calling "You-carter") and a host of fine games at our disposal.

It also allows us to bring Dave 'Daffers' back into the fold. His main niggle is that Fridays are - rightly - 'family-time' in the Daffin household (he works away from home a lot) and he has never been able to make it on a regular basis. We were also promised threatened with a drive-by appearance from freelancing 'influencer' Ben Maddox.

Well, as it happened, Jobbers disappeared, Tony was off on emergency conference calls trying to rescue Network Rail from (yet more) ignominy, and Maddox found a better date. But that still left five of us: in addition to Becky and I, Ian dialled in with several cans of Strongbow, and we heard from Gerv until he hooked up his webcam, when we saw pictures of him as well. Gerv looked a bit rough, and it turned out his 'flu' was the result of a suspicious skiing trip to Austria in February. He cheerfully admitted to being one of the country's first super-spreaders, although his descriptions of the symptoms were pretty shocking. Stay inside, folks.

Skype added some new threads to the club's banter. I peered at my split-screen once to see everyone fondling their chin in clear contravention of Government face-touching advice, and my makeshift iPhone stand was a constant source of amusement as it toppled over every time I got up to get a beer, affording the others many interesting views of my ceiling. Ian's wife dropped in on us and waved cheerfully as if she was altogether unfamiliar with the concept of video conferencing. Bless.

Yucata's silly turn-based system had already gotten on my wick, so I dragged everyone off to BaJ for a game of Concordia on the Imperium map. Teaching Ian the rules from scratch without any sort of physical props was a challenge, but he got up and motoring soon enough, although Becky had had the good grace to steal most of his target cities first. Dave looked to be more of a threat, though, rapidly expanding cities into forsaken bits of the board and Gerv had a good stab at some fancy-assed production. I went pure and simple for low-cost goods and getting all my figures on the board and it worked very neatly indeed - final scores were pretty much in order of experience.

Fun, yes, but it did take the best part of 2.5 hours, which is running a little long for Concordia. Dave had to retire, but we closed matters with a fun and not-overrunning Las Vegas. This was MUCH easier to teach everyone, and MUCH easier for them to beat me. The final round was mostly about Gerv and Ian battling for second place behind Becky, though, as she seemed almost magnetically attracted to the precious $90,000 notes.

I don't know how many weeks we'll have to keep this up, but I'm game if they are.
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