Geek Chat League Gelato 82 - Coincidence
Chris Montgomery
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Joliet
Illinois
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ABOUT GCL mb GELATO DIVISION mb SUBSCRIPTION THREAD

Geek Chat League Gelato 82 - Coincidence

What is a Geek Chat League?

A Geek Chat League is a weekly discussion-group format for people who love gaming and enjoy talking about games. It is intended to foster depth and familiarity, producing engaging content and worthwhile interaction. Members get to know one another, establish shared interests, and generally develop a friendly and productive environment.

Of necessity, each division of GCL is kept relatively small (typically between 12-16 members, though individual divisions may incline one way or the other). A tight-knit discussion group tends to function more smoothly than a free-for-all. It allows individuals to be heard and understood, and for each participant to keep up and enjoy multiple topics as the week progresses. The format is geeklist-based, and lists are not published to the BGG front page.

Policy: If you're a lurker or have otherwise discovered GCL Gelato, feel free to read along with us and see what the members have to say on everything under the sun. If you have a constructive comment or something else you think would add to the discussion, consider posting it — if it's helpful, respectful, and polite to the discussion group as a whole, as well as to its individual members.

Our Seemingly Irrelevant Event:
leroy 43 (Roger)

The Effects:
ad79 (Stig)
alex352 (Alex)
Capt_S (Jon)
cmontgo2 (Chris)
Cole Wehrle (Cole) ***
csottk (Skippen)
DocStryder (Doc)
leroy43 (Roger)
licinius (Carl)
oeolycus (Dan)
pete belli (Pete)
PzVIE (Ron)
Sluggonics (Kyle)
tommynomad (T. Nomad)
wifwendell (Wendell)

Next Up: Cole Wehrle!

Geek Chat League Gelato 82 - Diversity

COINCIDENCE! We humans are programming to find patterns in anything and everything. Some people see significant meaning in coincidence, while others ascribe it to chaos. In either case, coincidence affects all of us in ways that perhaps even we do not know.

Enjoy!

For music, I chose Dylan's "Subterranean Homesick Blues". There are better songs, I am sure, but I am pressed for time this week . . . I think the song is, at the least, apt for our list.



Edit: Had the wrong member list! Corrected!
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1. Board Game: Yahtzee Deluxe Poker [Average Rating:6.06 Overall Rank:4900]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Have you had an experience that, at the time it happened, you didn't take note of it, but on later retrospection, it had a profound effect on your life?
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2. Board Game: Ripley's Believe It or Not! [Average Rating:4.39 Overall Rank:16537]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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While we all agree that coincidences happen, we each proscribe different levels of significance to them. Some of us might see profound coincidences as signs from God (and who is to say they aren't?), while others might believe that they are essentially random events that have no significance. Our belief system undoubtedly will inform these opinions.

What level of significance do you proscribe to coincidences that are disruptive and/or life-changing (whether they happen to you or to others)?
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3. Board Game: Luck of the Draw [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:6619]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Many gamers will say "the dice hate me" or the "die hate you." I would expect we have all said it at one time or another. Do you *really* believe that? Or do you think it's just coincidence? Do you have problems separating your "sense" that the dice are against you from your rational self who knows that it's just random? Do you disagree with this premise entirely and believe that the dice actually can "go against you"? Argue amongst yourselves.
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4. Board Game: Heads and Tails [Average Rating:5.00 Unranked]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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While we can't control coincidence, do you ever find yourself warding off coincidence in superstitious ways? What superstitions do you have, if any? What do you think might happen to you if you don't do them?
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5. Board Game: The Game of Life [Average Rating:4.23 Overall Rank:17017]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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To what extent do you think your life has been dictated by coincidences? To what extent have to had to fight to chance those circumstances? To what extent have those circumstances been good for you? Bad?
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6. Board Game: Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:74] [Average Rating:7.77 Unranked]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Weekend Round-Up

This past week, these games were played face-to-face:
Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game, Core Set v. Joel

This past week, these games started:

This past week, these games continued:
Stonewall Jackson's Way II, Scenario 5 v. Patrick
Battle Above the Clouds, Scenario 1 v. Robert
Burnside Takes Command, Scenario 1 v. Carsten
Battle Above the Clouds,Scenario 3 v. Lawrence
Unhappy King Charles v. Roger
Unhappy King Charles v. Randy
The Napoleonic Wars, 2nd Edition v. Five-Player Game
Battle Above the Clouds, Scenario 1 v. Gordon (continuation of Game from 04/2013)


This past week, these games concluded:
None.

This past week, these games/accessories were acquired:
Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game

This past week, these interesting things happened in my games and my life:

1 ---> VERY PUMPED FOR BGG.CON! Making my list and checking it twice this week. I bought so many games in the Virtual Flea, I'm going to have to pay for shipping anyway to get it all home! Maybe. I might give them to my friend for safe-keeping and perhaps he can bring them around Christmas-time. Maybe.

2 ---> I bought the Core Set for Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures, and played the stripped down Quick-Start rules with a non-gamer buddy. It was fun, and I'm looking forward to digging into the game a bit more and using the "full" rules. Very Wings of War/Glory-like on first inspection. I love the Star Wars universe, though, and the miniatures are simply gorgeous.

3 ---> Only ONE more 24-hour shift until I am off for BGG Con. I work tomorrow, get off work Wednesday morning, and then begin prep for the Con. I am still watching my little guy daily so that my wife can work, but I can't wait.

4 ---> I entered the 2013 GCACW Tournament this year (it actually goes from now until the end of 2014). There are four rounds. My opponent quit before the first activation of the first turn! The next round isn't until February. I was sooooo looking forward to this tournament, and now I am back to waiting. Argh. I think I "win" my round, but I'm not even sure of that.

5 ---> We have an ultrasound appointment for this week, and might find out the sex of the baby!

6 ---> Wellington has been cancelled, so I'm glad I procrastinated and didnt' read the rules . . . but I still have a whole host of rules to read.

Cheers!
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7. Board Game: Cuba Libre [Average Rating:7.75 Overall Rank:485]
Dan
United States
San Francisco
California
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In the last two weeks, I've had the pleasure of exploring this gem several times. Many solo, one f2f. I really like it. Deceptively simple, a brainburner, but not too harsh.

One thing that is missing is a good beginner's guide. You know what your win conditions are and you know what you can do, but it's not apparent early how to make your actions move you towards a win. I devised this little table that I'm continuing to add to. Take a look if you like.

Nowhere in the manual does it say to the Govt. "really, the only way you can gain support is by using a civic action, and here's when and how you might do that." In fact, the civic action isn't even an action, per se, but something that's a little buried in the manual.

Still, a great game and one I look forward to exploring. All of my games have ended as syndicate AI default wins though. Doh!

As to my absence, I have missed you guys. It's been a strangely busy year. I haven't really played many games either. At one point I was foolishly thinking of selling off most of my collection. Then the GMT sale came along and suddenly I was adding to my collection. I think I may have missed making a list, and I apologize for that. Thank you to whomever took on that responsibility. I hope to be around a little bit more in the coming weeks.

Would anyone like to play a PBEM game of Cuba Libre?
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8. Board Game: Navajo Wars [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:1282]
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
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Having finished War of the Suns, I read the rules and punched the pieces for Navajo Wars - a rather different game. I'm REALLY liking it - once you sit down to play it the rules begin to click, though the challenge like all good games is what do you DO with the rules? I've played four or five of the easy two scenarios so far and am REALLY enjoying it.

Also continuing PBEM games of Andean Abyss, Cuba Libre, and A Distant Plain. Am I keeping them straight? Well I did send some Cuba Libre files to the guys playing A Distant Plain last week...

Also Jon and I played more in our struggle for the Pacific in Fire in the Sky: The Great Pacific War 1941-1945.
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9. Board Game: A World at War [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:3051]
Kyle Seely
United States
Carmel
IN
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This is the week that was...

We finally got the North Africa scenario up and running at the club. This is a true learning session - nobody is even playing any particular side, we're all just sitting with our noses buried in the rules. I made one of my handy-dandy binders with a printout of the rules, so we wouldn't all have to pass around one rulebook. In this case, however, the binder is neither handy nor dandy, but a blunt instrument capable of killing a man...



So after about four hours, we'd completed the first turn! It did, however, present a great sense of accomplishment! There's nothing better than that feeling that you're starting to grasp a really complex game. We haven't gotten to the naval rules yet - that won't be until the next scenario, but we are definitely on our way! No turning back now!



Finished the game of PoG I had going with one of the club members. I was the CP and lost. I actually had Russia on the ropes, getting them into the Bolshevik Revolution. However, he had the French Oriental Army cutting a swath through Bulgaria, and I made the mistake of leaving Constantinople vulnerable, with only an army and 1 Turkish corps. Should have SR'd another corps from the Near East map and left the Russian front there static, knowing that he didn't have the points, post fall of the Tsar, to attack broadly there. Constantinople fell, so I felt safe calling it, as it was spring of 1918, and I knew there just weren't enough turns left for me to make up the points deficit.



This one is cruising along on my solo table. The Ottomans came out swinging by allying with the French and jointly declaring war on the Hapsburgs - then sinking a large Hapsburg fleet in the Med and taking Sicily from them, while another army marched overland and took Venice. They quickly offered terms to Charles V, part of which including ending their alliance with the furious French, who rightfully felt betrayed. Charles accepted the Ottoman terms of a white peace (well, minus Sicily, but they were in no position to demand it back) so he could focus on crushing one enemy at a time. Now, the French have been pummeled - several tough defeats to the Hapsburgs in the Italian duchies, as well as in Navarre. They were forced to sue for peace and offer up Franche Comte to Charles V. However, before the ink was dry on that treaty, England declared on them, with designs on booting the French out of Scotland. A French relief fleet was sunk with all hands, including the army it was transporting. However, the English siege of Scotland was a disaster, costing them a fleet and an army. This one may end up in stalemate. Protestantism is spreading like wildfire, and the Papacy is biding its time until 1540, when they can start getting Jesuits out there to do a little counter-Reforming.

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10. Board Game: Wings of Glory: WW1 Duel Pack [Average Rating:8.05 Overall Rank:3463] [Average Rating:8.05 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
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This is the week that was:
Thursday night gang
High Frontier 1 New to me!

BottosCon 2013
Pax Porfiriana 3
Wings of Glory 3 New to me!
A Distant Plain 1 New to me!
Combat Commander: Europe 1
Cuba Libre 1
Pacific Typhoon 1

With the family
Mamma Mia! 1
Schwarzer Peter 1

A pretty quiet week, but an amazing weekend as I attended BottosCon 2013, a local wargame convention that's been running for a number of years. This year it was held at the Sheraton in Surrey and I had a great time.

But first... the Thursday night gang met last Tuesday instead as Jeff really wanted to play High Frontier in preparation for BottosCon, and I came along for the ride (so to speak). I managed to get a rocket to Ceres, and was having trouble getting my factory there, but I could see the appeal of the game. And the map is really very cool.

So BottosCon... There were 95 attendees at final count over the three day event. I missed out the Friday, but went on Saturday and Sunday, met some great folks, and played some great games.

On Saturday I gave Andrew a lift and we got in two games of Pax Porfiriana before a lackluster filler game of Pacific Typhoon. PT Is a very fun game, but you need people to play with tempo and not overthink it. After lunch I got in a game of Cuba Libre, which was just awesome.

After dinner, I signed up for the Wings of Glory tournament, on a whim as I didn't have anything else planned, and I went 3-0 in the round robin and was declared the winner! My prize was a duel pack with the Red Baron and Brown's Sopwith.



It's just an intro kit and I really had a lot of fun playing it, but I can also see the siren call of the expansions and plane kits... Fortunately, my new Kickstarter Designer Edition Ogre has arrived and kicked in my ADOS (Attention deficit? Oooo! Shiny!) ... wow. Just... wow. Wings of what?

Sunday saw Andrew getting some groups to try out the scenarios from his upcoming Sea Lion battle pack for Combat Commander. While the others were playing his scenarios, we played a partisan scenario where I seemingly unlearned the patience I had learned last scenario and lost on time with two melees pending the outcome of the sudden death roll.

After that, Jeff, Andrew, David E (a con attendee) and I played A Distant Plain. Brian Train was there in attendance and he autographed my copy for me. ADP is a significant step up in complexity from Cuba Libre, and I felt it really captured the situation on the ground really really well. This was the game I was hoping Labyrinth would be. I'm really looking forward to trying it again.

After the game of ADP there was basically an hour left in the con so we called it a night and went home.

I had dinner with my family and we played a couple of light games before bedtime.

This morning I got up really early, drove to Point Roberts, went to the shipping place (it's a great business - you can use them as a US ship to address, and you pay per parcel. Brilliant!) and picked up my copy of Ogre Designer's Edition.

Words fail me. I thought I was prepared for just how massive this thing really is. I was wrong.

But! My daughter wanted to play it and we played the basic Ogre scenario and I gave her a Mk III and took the command post and grunts and got completely crushed. It didn't help that every time she shot at my guys she was rolling a 5 or 6, and that my guys couldn't hit treads if their life depended on it. A review is coming soon, stay tuned.

PBEM
Here I Stand - Ever have a game where you wish you could just quit? I feel this way in my game. I'm the Ottomans and the Hapsburgs have beautifully hemmed me in, and we can't agree on anything.

Unhappy King Charles - Three games on the go. I love this game. I'm hoping to rope Jon into another game.

1989 - Two games on the go, one with Tommy who is an absolute delight to play against. The other is with an opponent who never says anything in his emails to me. Just the move file. Is that normal or it just me? He's not the first opponent who's done that in games. Jon and Tommy both write little novels with each move (and I try to reciprocate). I digress, both games are well underway - Tommy and I in turn 2, Simon and I in turn 4.

Cuba Libre - with Wendell and Jon and all I know is it's not my turn.

Pax Porfiriana - my candidate for best new-to-me game of 2013. I've already played over 20 times and wish it were more.
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11. Board Game: Suburbia Inc [Average Rating:8.00 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.00 Unranked]
Ron
Austria
Vienna
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This was an uneventful week regarding gaming. I read a few rulebooks from my Essen purchases and on Saturday two friends came over and we played "boardless" Trivial Pursuit. 2 boys vs. 2 girls. After 100 questions each we ended up with a score of 37:37! Incredibly bad! I blame the red wine and the fact, that we only rolled questions from the really hard editions ***, like the American 80s, Ireland, Classic TV and similar ones ... usually we crack the 50% barrier meeple

On Sunday, Andrea and I tried out the new expansion for Suburbia (called Suburbia Inc). The expansion basically adds more of the same, but I consider that a good thing.



-------------

*** Wait a moment ... rolled bad ... do dice hate me after all??? wow
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12. Board Game: The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:1056] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
Stig Morten
Norway
Kvernaland
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Played a few more patrols with my U-Boat but met the Depth Charges and sank on my 7th patrol.
Direct hit by the Escort. Very cool game and the rules are now available for download.


Boat the moment before it sank. Penultimate box on both Hull and Flooding and most systems damaged and several crewmembers injured or killed. But at the time of the image still afloat, but not for long.

Also attended "Spill-o-rama X", the local con on Friday and Saturday night for some gaming. The con is very focused on Euros and several of the new Essen releases were there as some people had brought alot back home.

What I played on Friday.
Trains Described as "Dominion with trains". Deckbuilding and building rails and stations. Ok game, but not my type of game. Not a fan of deckbuilding. Lost in Epic fashion as I had no idea how to put together a good deck.

Crokinole
Played a four-player game of this and it is a fun game. My side won largely thanks to my playing partner.

Participated in the Annual Quiz and didn't win. But fun quiz.

Love Letter
Tried this game and found it to be fun. Easy and fun. Also got this in the No-ship math trade organized for this con.

Also played a round of Love Letter with my wife and neighbour when I got home.

Saturday I played:
PitchCar
Took part in the annual tournament and managed to win my qualifying heat(7 players) Surprised by that win as it is atleast 2 years since I last played Pitchcar.
Normality returned for the finale when I was caught by the leader and as such was retired and ended 7th in the tournament. I think I need to aquire a copy of this game.

Crokinole
A two-player game while passing the table. Lost handily.

Terror in Meeple City
Tried this thing. Dexterity with monsters. Sounds fun. 3-player game and I found it to be a light game, with lots of different powers to the monsters. The board we played on had suffered some warping and that wasen't good. I found the board to be a bit cramped and not open to much carnage by pitching the paws aroound the board. Got to throw a car into a building and have it get stuck on the second floor.

Fun game but not sure about how long you bother playing it. Setup was abit long for such a funny little game.

Gear & Piston
A worker placement game and the owner had recieved it only two days prior, so we had some problems with the rules throughout the game and as such it didn't play as it could have.
Lighter than many of the other games I saw played, and again, not my type of game, so not looking to picking it up.
Nice game if you want a lightish worker placement game, I guess.

I constructed a nice little electric car(which unlike some fancy electric cars nowadays) didn't catch fire, and I ended up winning the game.

No wargames played, as No Retreat! The North African Front hasn't arrived and the one I had loose plans to play Memoir with didn't pan out as he was in long games when I was available for a game.

Next year I'll plan more in advance but with kids getting sick it ain't too easy.
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13. Board Game: Inca Empire [Average Rating:7.07 Overall Rank:1235]
Cole Wehrle
United States
St. Paul
Minnesota
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x1 Inca Empire (really cool)
x3 Hanabi
x1 Settlers of Catan
x1 Study in Emerald
x1 Mage Knight
x1 Emissary
X1 Eclipse
x1 Tammany Hall
x1 Duel of Ages

Okay, so I'm cheating a little here. This record is for the last two weeks. I was sorry to miss last week's list but I had house guests which meant both
a: less internet time
b: more boardgames!

There were lots of highlights from the past two weeks, including what was my best play of Mage Knight, ever. In a two player game I managed a score of 114 which I think is a personal record. The game was closely fought throughout and had an epic finish. Though I was initially quite skeptical of the game (as I am of all of Vlaada's games), I can say that Mage Knight is an epic achievement. I have long waited for a reprint of Magic Realm but I think I would hesitate before buying because of how close Mage Knight gets to it's ancestor and how slick the various subsystems of the game are. It's fantastically interactive, deep, open, and puts to shame the rest of the genre which seems wholly arrested by a stale set of mechanisms.

As satisfying as that game was, the weekly highlight was Inca Empire. In the space of one play, the game had enamored me. It's a train gamer's civ game. I played it with my house guests and by the end of the game I think we were all sold on its brilliance which is compounded by wonderful, evocative production values. The sun card playing subsystem is wonderful and I wish more civ games would borrow it. Basically, you have event cards (both good and bad) and you play them on this little board which has four quadrants. Each quadrant boarders two lines so when you play a "Flood" card it effects two players. So the good and the bad get spread. Additionally the events stack for the whole of the round which allows for wonderful reversals of fortune. I'm not one to obsess about theme but I actually found myself being pulled into the game's story as my beleaguered King left his washed out kingdom for a time to go on an epic pilgrimage.

The other winner was A Study in Emerald which I PnP'd. I actually played it twice, but the first game was a learning game and we screwed up some pretty basic stuff. The game is good. I more-or-less had written off Wallace (once my favorite designer), but he's back in the saddle with this game. I have been thinking about designing a spy game for years but struggled with the mechanical aspect. A Study in Emerald uses deck-building brilliantly to this effect. In the same way that AFAoS portrayed command distance with deck-building here we have the operational management of a spy network brilliantly abstracted. I can take or leave the Cthulhu mythos and would have been much happier of the game was just about late Victorian anarchists, but I think the mythos does work and makes the game easy to understand. Moreover, it's the perfect game for one of game groups and I could see the title getting a ton of play. Thankfully I already organized a trade .

Wow, I'm already going long. With the house guests we played a wonderful game of Catan which is still wonderful--especially when played well. Cati and I also played a game of Emissary: The Red Frontier which was...interesting. I'm very intrigued by Hegemonic, which seems to take the 4x genre to interesting new places.

Lastly I had a DoAII session with the locals. Great game, great message, great body (cf this. My team got trounced by a very effective use of early game henchmen that kept us pinned. I think we are now at the point where everyone is competent and the games just keep getting better and better (game of the year?).

The week ahead:
More Study in Emerald
Age of Industry

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14. Board Game: Age of Industry [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:544]
T. Nomad
Netherlands
Den Bosch
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Count me among the apologetic who failed to make a list last week.

Shenomad and the boys were away for a week, so very little at-home gaming.

is pretty much the extent of playing Tyros with Kidnomad. That and avoiding the fauna on the map, lest the boats get pulled under. Still, it *is* Wallace, so the boy is off to a good start.

Speaking of fauna, we also got in a session of "sea monster dance party" last night. One kraken was banished, for eating a shark.

On Thursday mornings, a colleague and I occupy a student help desk. We have a "good slot," as we are rarely visited. We had been playing Kupferkessel Co. until last week, when we made the switch to Biblios. Two games, I took the first handily, he the second in a close one.

Work encroached further, with professional development cancelling my Wednesday afternoon Gents' group. And we had De Vulgari Eloquentia planned, too! One of the guys and I were able to get in a YINSH, though.

The highlight of the week was a late-night Saturday solo (I'm an animal, I tellya) session of Age of Industry. Reckless (Red), Patient (Yellow), Screwyou (Green) and Leavemealone (Purple) were seated at the table, which I'd put up on the balcony so as to play with a view. Three lazy hours later, Screwyou won by a single point. Great game: maybe someday I'll get to play with live opponents!

I continue to be grateful for the bitchslapping and banter I'm being served by Roger. Our PBEM 1989: Dawn of Freedom is a thrilling, maddening delight.

This week promises big things. My best gaming buddy here is expecting his Pillars expansion any day. On Friday, I'm running the semi-annual staff games night. Tables of newbies playing:
- Ticket to Ride: Europe
- Enemy Chocolatier
- Nexus Ops
- The Pillars of the Earth
And I'm teaching Commands & Colors: Ancients to our department's resident military historian. We'll follow the table games with a big round of Wits & Wagers.
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15. Board Game: Little Wars [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:8413]
N/A
Chippawa 1814, a pivotal battle during the war of 1812:



An illustrated Session Report will be posted soon.

This should be my final entry in the 1913-2013 anniversary series.

BTW, a special Little Wars 1913-2103 microbadge is now available.
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