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 28th May - Every Games Club Needs A Shed

Ben Bateson
United Kingdom
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Oi! Hands off...
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But NOT Tony's shed, in this instance.

In a dalliance with dipping our toes back into normality, John invited some carefully-selected* gamers to play games in his shed-cum-studio** of a Friday evening. Carefully sidling around the house so as not to disturb his B&B residents, we found a very nicely-furnished outbuilding with all manner of drapes, photos of his old job (wedding dresses) and - in true John style - a bizarre and unique table.

There was much back-and-forth with what we actually wanted to play to celebrate seeing John for the first time in 15 months. Tony wanted to honor tradition with a club favourite and - rather typically - John wanted to play something new. Becky, rather bizarrely, wanted mostly to play games that we had spent the last year playing electronically on BGA.

Eventually, we reached some sort of compromise, with the result that John pulled On The Origin of Species out of the game bag to start with. I find this a very pleasant, pretty and undemanding take on the Splendor genre and I think John agreed - he won, after all. Tony, however, found himself in the position of 'not being able to do exactly what he wanted' and winded on and on about how terrible a game it was. Never mind the fact that a few turns later he was able to do what he wanted, on and on and on it went - a full hour of meaningless bemoaning verbiage. It's good to be back, isn't it?

With the sun dipping below the horizon, Becky started tucking herself below the assorted throws and blankets, and John turned on his shed heater. This proved to be completely useless, ineffectually blowing hot air up its own sensor hole and disengaging with proceedings altogether. Remind you of anyone?

Anyway, we moved onto Goa, a game that Tony was more or less guaranteed to engage with, even despite a lapse in his understanding of the Expedition Card rule - a rule which I patiently explained to him and he went on to contravene twice again immediately afterwards. Other than this, it was a relatively friction-free game, everyone pursuing different routes in their quest for points. Tony went straight for the Expedition track, John went Big Money, Becky colonised, and I built ships (totally under-rated). I came out comfortably in front, even with my underwhelming final Expedition hand of five different symbols.

With all the chit-chat of catching up, we had frittered much of the evening away, and we only had time for a test-drive of Tony's sheep-racing 'Steering Wool' prototype, purportedly a matchbox game exclusive for visitors to the nascent gaming museum.

plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose, eh?

* Actually, not very carefully selected, but the shed was strictly occupancy of 4.

** Whatever joke you were going to make, stop NOW.
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