The Bay Gift Exchange
Mike Jones
United States
Gainesville
Florida
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Yeah it's here! Really it's right here.
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There was a bit of banter about whom has gotten their stuff. I'm not even sure my 'first' package got to the target.

I'm not much for 'public' acknowledgement of gifts, etc. But, there's a fine line between privacy and the 'celebration' of the fun we want to have around here.

This year it's been a little too low key and therefore not as special. So, I'm stepping out of my box and posting this list.

Mainly so that we can celebrate together the 'birth of the bay'

In the past, we've skirted the issue on if it's 'secret' or not, saying it's up to the sender. In the past it's been fairly open, if not at first, it's fairly obvious over time.
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1. Board Game: Hamburgum [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:705]
Mike Jones
United States
Gainesville
Florida
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I actually received mine in Mid-August.

Funny thing is that it came in two packages.

The first package came in from Amazon. I saw it was from amazon and I don't order from them, so I just handed it to Lillian and said 'hey your package came today.' She replied that she hadn't ordered anything and it sounded like a game. I had no idea what was going on. But, upon a shake, it was obvious that there was a game in there. So, I opened it up to find a copy of Hamburgum. I hadn't remembered winning this in an auction I thought, but must have. And put it aside.

It wasn't until a couple days later that a second package came for me. Once I opened it and saw a copy of Navgador in it, did it dawn on me that it must be from the gift exchange.

Then I looked at the return address and saw that it came from Grace. I did send a private geekmail of thanks, but now it's time for a public one.

Thank you. I'm realizing how much I enjoy the Rondel games and this fills my gap.

Thanks again.
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2. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Ancients [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:96]
Man thinks, the river flows.
United States
Riva
Maryland
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    I got Commands & Colors: Ancients very promptly, and I've already lost at it twice. To be fair I played the underdog both times and was holding the battlefield in the second game, so I'm counting that as a moral victory. I'm really liking this one and my oldest boy is starting to turn an eye towards ancient warfare so it will very likely get much more play even when I'm not home. I bought custom dice for this from a company in England super-cheap by the way, and they are razor-sharp:



    I also got a copy of A Fistful of Penguins which I have not gotten to yet. Oddly enough I'll probably play this with my buddies instead of my kids, playing C&C and Memoir with the kids instead which makes no sense. But, I'm not going to complain either! I have it stickered ready to go and if I make it back to my game group anytime soon I'll barge it onto the table. Should be an easy sell.

    Both arrived super-fast by the way, which put a fire under me to return the favor on my gift.

             S.


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3. Board Game: Tichu [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:123]
Grace P.
United States
Turlock
California
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On my first day of my new job, I got a text from my husband Matt saying I received packages. I knew they had to be from the gift exchange so I told him to open it and tell me what I had gotten since I am an impatient ho.

To my surprise, I got not one or two games but THREE from the very generous Charles. I received Thunderstone: Heart of Doom, Starship Merchants, and Tichu.

I did send Charles a geekmail upon receiving these but again, a very big thanks for the generosity!

I loved being a part of the Bay Gift Exchange and appreciated the opportunity to participate.
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4. Board Game: Mage Knight Board Game [Average Rating:8.11 Overall Rank:20]
Charles Smith
United States
San Jose
California
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My secret santa (still a secret) informed me that he/she was trying to figure out what to get me. Which makes sense, cause despite the longish wishlist, I never know what to buy myself either.

So after a second message a box showed up at home (well I don't know exactly, Kristen claimed that it showed up). And it had this message "Don't open until Columbus day".

Now the truth of things is that, normally, I don't wait to open any gifts. Gifts for Christmas usually don't get set down between delivery and opening. I use to think that this was a bad thing, but now I just claim that it is good because the person that gave me the gift knows how much I appreciate it

But in this case I was determined not to open it. And so I posted such on the last geekbay list. And Sag pointed out that Columbus died a long time ago and I should just open it. Of course, just having posted about it pretty much had already broke my resolve and I went and opened it. About the length of time that my diets usually last.

Anyway I got Mage Knight and 1910 (the expansion for Ticket to Ride). I am excited about both. 1910 because I have always hated the small cards. Off and on over the years it has been in my cart and I usually pull it out because I couldn't justify an expansion just because I didn't like the small cards. I had intended on trying this out with a couple that we play games with occasionally but we haven't gotten together since we got it.

As for Mage Knight, the only reason that I hadn't bought it before now was it went out of stock both times I was buying games. So hopefully I will get it played this weekend.

All in all, I couldn't be more pleased.

THANKS!
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5. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:220] [Average Rating:7.41 Unranked]
Jae
United States
Bryan
TX
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Huzzah!
I was about to go to the grocery store and saw a package perched on the bench by the door.

I opened it and much to my surprise, I found probably my #1 most wanted game right now, Mice and Mystics!

Unfortunately I am swamped with work right now, but I'm giddy at the prospect of finally getting to play it.

Thank you secret gitmo santa!
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6. Board Game: Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:78]
John Bandettini
United Kingdom
London
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Better late than never took on a whole new meaning for me when my Christmas in July package turned up.

I had to look at the address on the package twice to make sure it was actually for me. The sender, shall we call him Neil, had raised the bar for generosity to an all time high. I opened the package and found inside a pristine copy of Descent 2nd edition. Great gift huh?

But it was a very big box was there more inside? Yes there was a copy of Aquaretto. This was probably the single game that I have wanted the most. I have had Zooloretto for at least four years I have most of the expansions. So I kept meaning to get this, but the cult of the new kept winning. I would think about getting Aquaretto, but then see something new and shiny. So thanks for pulling the trigger for me.

Digging further into the box I found yet another game, Phoenicia. Now I understand this game is pretty much the same as Sceptre of Zavanador and Outpost, but I have never played any of them, so really looking forward to playing this.

There was one more game in the box, The Great Zimbabwe. No, even Neil was not that crazy, I had ordered it from Boardgameguru and Paul just put it in the box as it was coming to me anyway.

So I win this year.
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