Anthony BoydellUnited Kingdom
UnspecifiedWelcome...to my Shed!
A lo-ong afternoon curating items on both JIRA and Azure Devops backlogs saw me (finally) shutting the lid on the laptop at 1730HRS; this left me barely 15 mins to get some supper together and choose games to take to the Tuffley meetup. Flakes of delicious pastry scattered the library room carpet as I multi-tasked: into the bag went Terraforming Mars, Obsession, Island Racing and Salvage.
Barely a week since our own (Museum-based) alternative 1920s History-on-the-tabletop, Tom and a few others were on a promise of Scythe while - on the second table - three occasional attendees had walked in, sat down, unpacked and started playing Call to Adventure without reference to anyone else in the room. That left Cheltenham regulars Jerick and Nick, as well as a Twilight Struggle-wielding Mark, to join me for the last table and whatever I could convince them to play:
After an extended discussion about 3D printing - during which Mark proudly showed off his wonky Dice Tower ("It's supposed to look like that!"*) - I was able to explain the Obsession rules; thankfully, I was unencumbered by red top cider/a distracted brain and managed to get through it all relatively unscathed. We started playing...
Nick was immediately horrified that - in the base game - there would only be 16 rounds, so I flipped the board to the 'Long' side and we got stuck in. There was much complaining during the first third - mainly because
a) the others kept having their 'Rep' stolen by my early-acquisition Service room, and
b) money was a little tight until a few more Gentry found their way to our Stately Piles.
Despite an early attempt to instill a little role-playing to the Downtown Abbey/Gosford Park shenanigans - basically, correcting Nick's use of 'Dollars' instead of 'Pinds' and tutting at Mark's sniggering whenever I mentioned 'Providing Service' - we were a table of heads-down Euro gamers: for shame, as I would've hoped for a little more repressed emotion, snobbery, gout and casual racism TBH. Still, the momentum was quickly "picked up" and there seemed to be a profusion of sporting events in particular: rather too much Tennis to be healthy - "Looks like we're playing Tennis AGAIN!!!" being the plaintive cry. I was rather running away with it, though, with my massive hand of benevolence-spewing Prestige Guests and a quickly-ascended-maximum-reputation (mainly from a couple of monuments and my leeching Butlers). Revenge, in a small form - though not enough to change the end result - came from Jerick, who stole my Underbutler in the penultimate round thus preventing me putting on the Mother of all English Garden receptions...
Both Nick and Marc maxed out their Rep too but Jerick took the 'Fair Play' award for the night by being the only player not to have taken a 'backsie' in a turn: stout fellow - a good sort, I say, from good stock etc.
We closed with a run of the new La Mame Games release - Salvage - which I had pleadingly-acquired from Rikki Tahta prior to him taking them all to Essen Spiel (and, naturally, selling out in a very short time when he got there):
This is a classic poison trick-taker in the flavour of Hearts with a delicious pre-hand round of oil barrel drafting; oil barrels can be claimed (in any number on your turn in the draft) to provide mitigation for any poison (flame) cards obtained during actual play BUT if players get too greedy - or deliberately dry up the supply in the drafting round - the barrels 'explode' and players lose points. The aim, having started with 20 points, is to the player with the most points when one (or more) players 'go negative': a devious twist on a classic - something we are getting used to, and very much enjoying, with La Mame's products.
*I can imagine Mrs Mark looking at the "intentionally-deformed" plastic glob and exclaiming "You paid £500 for a machine that made this? It looks like the output of a Primary School pottery class!"
Life and Games (but mostly games) from Tony Boydell: Father, Grandfather, Husband and Independent UK Game Designer.
- [+] Dice rolls