Calgary TableTop Meetup - November 2nd (Brentwood Co-Op)
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
Alberta
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We, The FallCon Convention team, organize and hold a monthly meetup here in Calgary in the community room of our local Co-Op. It is a great location, that they generously let us use.

We get a fair number of people, some new, and many regulars. I try to make sure that I get to chat with as many of them as possible, but it never seems catch everyone.

As part of my 'contribute more to the Geek' concepts, One of the things I like to do is get some discussions going about the games that were played at our meetup.

I am hoping that other attendees (and general readers as well), will come and contribute both games and comments.

Also, I'd like to also thank the Sentry Box for donating the door prize for this month's meeting.
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1. Board Game: Snow Business [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
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The weather was a bit 'Canadian' today - and the snow was really coming down as I showed up at the Meetup.

I showed up at 11, and got everything set up for the crowd that I was hoping would still make it out.

I think we still topped out over 30 people in the end, but it definitely took a bit longer to get the place hopping.

By the time I went home around 9:30, the snow had basically stopped. there was a decent amount on the ground, but nothing like they had forecast.
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2. Board Game: La Boca [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:1157]
Darren Bezzant
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The first game to hit the table was La Boca. Sort of.

I was reading through the rules when
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came in and we tried out the tutorial.

I thought It was really interesting, but I couldn't grok how this game was a 3-6 player game, when it just seemed like a 2 player cooperative game.

Well, I figured it out later that day (see below).

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3. Board Game: Cavemen: The Quest for Fire [Average Rating:6.41 Overall Rank:3978]
Darren Bezzant
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Brad McLaughlin
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and I sat down to play Cavemen. It is sort of a deck builder, I guess, but your hand is always open. You hunt dinosaurs, add tribe members to your cave (and possibly gather more caves) and invent stuff.

All in the process of getting enough knowledge to invent fire.

I thought it had some great ideas, and would definitely play it again, but there might be some weirdness around the end of game mechanics, as I don't know how you can stop some one once they have enough knowledge to build fire, it is too hard to catch up.

 
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4. Board Game: Francis Drake [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:372]
Darren Bezzant
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and I then sat down for a game of Francis Drake. I had been waiting to get this back to the table, and I think this is one of my current new favourites.

There is a lot of good decisions to make, a fair bit of interaction (not really direct confrontation, but you can definitely play a few mind games here).

I think the board might be too big for anything less than full complement. I would have like to seen some things removed for less than 5 players, as it didn't seem like we were pushed into confrontations, you could always find a place that someone else hadn't gone.
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5. Board Game: Nothing Personal [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:877]
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
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Gordon Phillips
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showed up as we were setting this up so we invited him to join us for Nothing Personal.

So we had


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Gordon Phillips
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and I to try out this Tom Vasel designed negotiation game.

I find it is difficult to get a negotitaion game to the table with my regular game group. Games where the interaction is more social than hard-wired to the game just doesn't seem to work.

The game started out very animated. the players were throwing around wisecracks and bribes with relative ease. I began to thing that maybe the problems that I had encountered before were the other players in my group, but as the game wore on, the game became more serious and internalized.

The final 2 rounds were slow and torturous. I think we all knew that Gordon was going to win at this time, and I personally was just hoping that it would be over soon.

I'm not blaming anyone at the table other than myself for not enjoying this as much as I wanted to. I would definitely play this game differently, and will try this again soon.

I think there is a decent game there, and hope everyone had a good time trying it out.

Thanks to Chris for teaching this, it was much better learning this from someone who had played it, rather than from the rulebook.
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6. Board Game: La Boca [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:1157]
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
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So, after taking a break for supper, but buddy Steve (turns out he doesn't have a BGG account), Glynis (couldn't find an account), and Brendan (not sure which account) sat down to figure out how to play La Boca.

It has cooperative play (sort of), competitive play (sort of), puzzle-building, real-time, and colours. Almost all of these would mean that this would qualify as the worst-possible game for me

However, It was awesome! You get a randomly selected partner for the round, then you have to build a 3D puzzle based on your card. You only see your side of the puzzle, while your partner sees the other side. You have to use all the pieces, and you have to work cooperatively to build the puzzle. (Watch a video, I am really not explaining this well. Or better yet, come over and we can play!)

Based on how long it took you to build the puzzle successfully, you will get points, which are awarded to both players. but yo ukeep your own points, as you will be paired up with each player a couple of times over the game. Who ever had the most points at the end of the game, wins!

We ended up playing this game a couple of times, and I think everyone had a great time. I know I did!

The colours were a little difficult, and I will probably do a Colour Blind Gamer Blog Post about this soon to come up with ideas on how to make this easier to play.

(I just had one of the other players point out which colours matched which blocks.)

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7. Board Game: Rise of Augustus [Average Rating:6.76 Overall Rank:843]
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
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Afterwards, Glynis, Steve and I played a couple games of Augustus.

I usually start off calling this 'gamer-bingo' which it really is, but Glynis told me that my elevator pitch almost made her go play something else! (I really need to get a better description of this game).

After we played the first round, however, she was glad that she sat down at the table.

The game is really easy to teach (10 minutes), quick to play (30 minutes) and once you understand the end-of game scoring rules (another 5 minutes, about half-way through), you can sit down and just enjoy the game.

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8. Board Game: The Downfall of Pompeii [Average Rating:7.13 Overall Rank:478]
Darren Bezzant
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Calgary
Alberta
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For the final game of my evening, Dave Bligh (not sure of BGGID), Glynis, Steve and I pulled out the reprint of Downfall.

this is another game that I really enjoy for the purity of the rules. They are very straightforward, and can be taught as you play the game.

Once you get the deck set up, and explain the first part of the game, you can start setting up the conversation for the changes that will come up as you work through the deck, and then after the deck is done.

Dave pulled out the win, but it was a lot of fun and nothing beats throwing your opponent's villager into the volcano!
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9. Board Game: Stop & Go [Average Rating:4.86 Unranked]
Warren Smith
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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Sadly, I wasn't able to attend. The best I could do was pop by for a minute to drop off a couple of games that I'd agreed to sell to someone. The room was full when I showed up and just about everyone was playing something. There was a group that appeared to be just starting a session of Dominant Species and it made me cry a little bit inside as I thought about how much fun I could be having. Alas, 'real' life was calling me away.

Glad for everyone who had a good time, though!!
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10. Board Game: Spyrium [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:551]
Chris
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Calgary
AB
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After playing Cavemen, Francis Drake, and Nothing Personal, Brad broke out Spyrium which I was really interested in playing.

We did play in bit wrong but don't think it would of made much of a difference. But the game is defiantly broken. There are a few cards they are way to powerful.

I will play again, but don't see myself playing this too often.
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11. Board Game: Stone Age [Average Rating:7.60 Overall Rank:84] [Average Rating:7.60 Unranked]
Chris
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Calgary
AB
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To finish up the night I played Stone Age. It was interesting because of the dice rolls during this game, many highs and many lows.

But rolling a six on a single dice to get the gold I needed was pretty amazing.
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12. Board Game: Eclipse [Average Rating:7.95 Overall Rank:39]
Jon Baxter
Canada
Calgary
AB
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So Bill actually got to play the game he wanted, I think more by luck than anything.


He taught five people including myself, and shame on you Bill for not teach me this years earlier you slacker!

It was slower than a normal game because there were some things that didn't click at first- even though it's pretty simple game. I think it was 6 hours or so long, much longer than other Eclipse games I've seen.


I was particularly fond of my race, and amused that Bill got my neighbour to attack me as "I was winning" (I wasn't though, I was probably in third place with that opponent being first and Bill being second (... however, no one including me noticed at the time that I actually was winning because of a special racial bonus that ended up being worth 10VP at the end of the game).

It was funny, opponent attacks me in one place and I realize as my dreadnoughts are turned to slag that I didn't quite have a hand on the whole starship combat thing! surprise

And Bill then promptly attacks my opponent, I rally while the opponent runs to defend himself- to no avail. He went from having 9 systems to 1 in the next turn (as he was always victimized by others who of course saw opportunity.

In the end though it was my last move that won with a final total of 41 VP, the last move was worth 7VP to me, Bill (in second) ended with 35.

meeple
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