Anthony BoydellUnited Kingdom
UnspecifiedWelcome...to my Shed!
December came in chilly: nose-numbingly, finger-tip pricklingly, light-the-goddamn-fire-ly chilly. Having put out the customary social media 'call to gamer arms' in the A.M, the Newent Knights went from a potential 'full' Scythe to just one-on-one in the space of an afternoon. However, not wanting to miss anyone dropping in on the off chance, I managed to fit in gravy sausages and an episode of "The Orville" before wandering down to The Shambles.
The reminder posts often get 'thumbs' from Newent locals who haven't turned up yet but I live in hope; anyone who takes on the responsibility of running a group knows that once you start you're not really able to stop: I recall Boffo Bateson playing solo games in the side room of The White Lion just 'to be there in case someone showed up' - that's proper dedication.
The electric heater struggled to keep itself warm in the Museum yestere'en, never mind spread to the rest of the space*. I mooched amid the displays: adjusting a box lean there, swapping an exhibit out there; a couple of goes on the Safari elastic-band shooting game and then Pete - Ross-on-Wye gamer - swung the door open and joined.
Best games for two? Well, the room is full of allsorts but I'd packed my house copy of Glory to Rome for this very eventuality:
My rules explanation was slow, meticulous and full of examples and, as you might expect, the first game was a walkover; albeit a heavily-narrated, exposition-filled walkover. Not so the second game, though; Pete managed a Bath as his first completed building and I encouraged him to heavily abuse its Patron power - which he did very ably. There was a brief moment where I might have levelled scores and gone for a Catacombs quick-finish, but he was off with successive Merchant actions and more insane Bath-triggered combos...I let it all play out so he could claim a 30 point score. The third game - now, enticingly, a decider - was nip-and-tuck: Pete got himself a Scriptorium (use one marble to complete any building) but I managed to stay one Rubble in the Vault ahead of him after using the last two foundations to end the game. It was obvious that the core zone movements were settling and I hope we get to play each other again: folks who know how to play this 'already' are now a rare resource.
It was getting colder - if that was at all possible - so I pulled an unopened copy of Coppertwaddle from my Vanity Corner shelves and literally cracked it open ie. the cards were 'stuck together' by the gloss finish (a long problem with 'Twadz), showering the table with a tiny plastic dust:
Though not as intense a teach as GtR, I still took my time and liberally sprinkled the first few rounds with narrative; obviously, if any of you know Coppertwaddle you'll remember that it's already soaked in its own (albeit false) narrative (Learnéd articles, hidden puzzles, fake history) - so much so that a BBC TV researcher telephoned me, in the mid 2000s, to get more info for a programme about Medieval Leisure pursuits**. While it's always great to play GtR, I was rather pleased with Coppertwaddle too; maybe it's due for a reprint?
Having heard the Yoga class come and go, Pete and I decided that our noses were rosy enough - and our extremities commensurately nipped - so we shut up shop around 9PM. Thankfully, Mrs B had stoked a sizzling fire so I was able to defrost in front of some easy TV; the enveloping, soporific glow and mug of chai tea rescuing me from game-induced hypothermia.
*sometimes I fear it gets so cold that I might find a British Prime Minister hiding in a corner to avoid media scrutiny.
**I bottled and confessed it was all hogwash, piffle, bunkum and balderdash - what could have been on prime time telly, eh?!
Life and Games (but mostly games) from Tony Boydell: Father, Grandfather, Husband and Independent UK Game Designer.
- [+] Dice rolls