Ryan Plays 10 Games 10 Times in 2014
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End of the year update


Well, I totally bungled the challenge this year, and I all but gave up on it. I still played games, which was the real goal, but I did not try to complete this challenge. I stopped counting milestones and I ignored the rewards and just got games whenever I wanted to. In the end, I played eight games 10 times, one game eight times, and another game seven times. So I came pretty close, but it would have not felt like a victory.

I am going to try the challenge again in 2015. However, this time, I am going to just have it be for fun instead of a chore. In fact, I'm going to try for three separate challenges.



The Purpose of this GeekList:
In 2013, I didn't purchase any new games. It was a big change for me because in previous years I spent all of my spending money, and money I didn't have, on new games. I learned that I don't need every new game that comes along. I still may want them, but I don't need them.

For 2014, I am going to focus on playing a few games a bunch of times rather than a bunch of games a few times, or not at all. One of the ways I plan to do this is by taking up the challenge posed in this GeekList. So between, January 1 and December 31, 2014, I will attempt to play 10 games 10 times.

Let's put this into perspective:
In 2013, I logged 127 total plays, and only three games had 10 or more plays. In a interesting note: 11 plays recorded in December are for games on this list. Hopefully I can carry that momentum into 2014 as I take on this challenge.

How this Geeklist will work:
I've chosen 10 games, and I'll list each game with a play-count tracker. I've also created space to log information about each play as they occur. I will record the date, type of play, notes, etc. I have also chosen an alternate 11th game in case on of the 10 just doesn't pan out.

Remember, there's no reason I can't play something more than 10 times, but let's not get ahead of ourselves just yet.

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Milestones:
For 2014 I hope to limit my new game purchases, so I've created milestones. I cannot purchase a new game until I've hit a milestone. If I do not purchase a new game before I play the next game, I have to wait until I reach the next milestone. This does not mean I purchase a new game every time it hit a new milestone, it means that I have to play the games on this list until I can add a new game to my collection. This self-imposed rule/reward is designed to enhance my gaming in 2014 as well as create an achievement system to make things more exciting!

Play 1 game 5 times - January 14, 2014
Play 3 games 5 times each - March 18, 2014
Play 6 games 5 times each
Play 10 games 1 time each
Play 10 games 5 times each
Play 1 game 10 times - January 30, 2014
Play 3 games 10 times each - April 22, 2014
Play 6 games 10 times each
Play 25 games - March 18, 2014 : star:
Play 50 games
Play 75 games
Play the 1st Alternate 10 times
Play a game not on this list 10 times - June 23, 2014
Play all the games!
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1. Board Game: Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:286]
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COMPLETED


PATHFINDER ADVENTURE CARD GAME
PLAY COUNT

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Pathfinder is my new hotness, and it seems like such an interesting experience that screams for multiple plays. I can't wait to dig into this game and let my party go adventuring. Many of my plays of Pathfinder will be solo, but if hope to get a few co-ops logged.



d10-1 1/5/13
My first play of Pathfinder of the year, and it was a nail biter. Ezren, Sajan, and Merisiel adventured into Black Fang's Dungeon. Black Fang was waiting for them at the door. Sajan easily defeated Black Fang, but the rest of the group couldn't temporarily close any of their locations so the dragon escaped. At least a location was closed on the first turn. Black fang showed up a few more times as our heroes struggled through the dungeon. Merisiel threw away her weapons and became virtually worthless. Ezren must have left his spell book outside the dungeon because he simply couldn't draw an attack spell. And just like we learned from The Poison Pill, Sajan cannot punch a skeleton. The team finally took down Black Fang and just in the nick of time. Only 4 cards were left in the Blessings Deck, but that doesn't really matter. I don't think the team would have made it. Sajan and Merisiel each only had one card left in their draw piles and Ezren only had two. Merisiel was so sure she was going to die that she cowered in the Temple (a closed location) and nursed her wounds while Ezren and Sajan finished the quest.

d10-2 1/9/14
In this game I got to dive into the Burnt Offerings Adventure Pack. Ezren, Sajan, and Merisiel set off for an adventure. They were excited to help the poor townsfolk of Sandpoint. However, I lost. The Blessings deck ran out on me. I must not have been paying much attention because I was truly surprised when I flipped over the final card and realized there was nothing underneath. No matter, it wasn't a terribly exciting day for my heroes. The strange thing was that I played Approach to Thistletop the fourth scenario rather than Attack on Sandpoint. No wonder things didn't gel for my characters. I was playing the adventure out of order. It's okay, we'll get 'em next time.

d10-3 1/13/14
For this game I played the correct scenario, Attack on Sandpoint. Ezren, Sajan, and Merisiel killed it. It was fairly easy as my heroes stomped their way through the town and kicked all the goblins' butts. It was a very satisfying adventure as things just fell into place. We got a few cool items. I'm excited to let Ezren try out his new Wand of Force Missile. No crossbow for Merisiel yet.

d10-4 1/14/14
Local Heroes. What a fun scenario. However, this game did not go so well. My heroes were way too cocky. They took their time sauntering around the town. They weren't in any kind of hurry, and the townsfolk knew it too. I didn't acquire one ally the entire game. Finally, the blessings deck ran out, and the town got sick of us.

My heroes found themselves standing around the town square completely alone.


d10-5 1/14/14
I played Local Heroes again. This time my heroes weren't going to mess around. Ezren and Sajan took care of the monsters in the Woods and the Waterfront. Merisiel went shopping at the General Store then bought drinks for everyone at The Rusty Dragon. Allies couldn't wait to join our party. Even a dog and a snake came along. My heroes' pockets were full of loot by the end. Merisiel got the Light Crossbow, but no Deathbane Crossbow just yet.

d10-6 1/15/14
The peace and celebration was short lived as my heroes discovered there was still Trouble in Sandpoint. They discovered an ancient crypt below the city, and as they searched for Erylium, they got lost in the catacombs. It was a long, slow struggle as they worked through each of the locations. I was sure I was going to lose the scenario but with the next to last Blessing card, Erylium popped out from behind a corner and Merisiel killed her straight away. Ezren temporarily closed the final location and victory was ours. This was much more monster heavy than any of the other scenarios so far. I like the fact that the things have varied as I've worked my way through Burnt Offerings. I continue to enjoy Pathfinder immensely!

d10-7 1/24/14
This time my heroes geared up for the Approach to Thistletop. I was very excited to play this scenario especially because I was playing it in the correct order in the adventure. Although, my heroes dove right into the action, I don't think they drank their Heroberry Juice this morning. They couldn't close a location to save their lives. I think I had six attempts to close a location and we didn't close a single one. It made for a long and fruitless adventure. Luckily, Ezren didn't die like I expected him to. He discovered Gogmurt but lost the fight, badly. After the fight, Ezren discarded 4 of the cards in his hand and there were only four cards left in his deck. Luckily, Sajan joined Ezren at the Waterfront and gave him a healing potion. Ezren rolled a four on the 1d4 and got four cards back into his deck. It was just enough to last him until the end of the encounter. We lost badly. Three locations were still open when the Blessings deck ran out. Oh well, we'll get 'em next time.

My heroes were exhausted from the slog up Thistletop. They just couldn't do it


d10-8 1/27/14
The first thing I did after tonight's game was buy this microbadge: mb. That's right, my first death. I feel pretty sad about this. I've played 10 games with Sajan, and now he's gone. Forever. It was Approach to Thistletop again. And once again, my heroes were half asleep on the adventure. I'm starting to think that I might not have built my character's decks for optimal performance. A handful of the monsters I faced were simply more difficult than I prepared for. Sajan kept taking combat damage until he had no more cards in his draw pile. He was at the Waterfront with Merisiel when she closed it, causing each character to discard a card. That was the stray arrow that hit him in the belly. When his turn came up he limped into the Treacherous Cave and spent all his blessings trying to find a potion but had no luck. Realizing there was nothing else he could do, he pulled the arrow from his gut and breathed his last. Ezren screamed, "If only he'd worn a shirt!" Ezren and Merisiel must have pulled out a flask and drank their Heroberry Juice because they were unstoppable for for the rest of the game. Rolling sixes on a 1d6. Rolling eights on a 1d8. It was awesome. When Gogmurt showed his face, Ezren closed his location and Mersiel kicked his butt, twice! After three tries, I finally beat Approach to Thistletop but at great cost. I'm going to take a break from Burnt Offerings and start back at Perils of the Lost Coast with a new set of Heroes. Then some, or all, of them will join my Original Heroes, Ezren and Merisiel, to take on Thistletop Delve

R.I.P. Sajan


d10-9 1/29/14
My new set of heroes are Lem, Amiri, Kyra, and Lini. I call them Lem and the Women. I played Brigadoom! to start off the Perils of the Lost Coast adventure. Wow, do these heroes play differently than my Original Heroes. Lem and the Women are all about discarding cards. Lini discards a card to (apparently) shape shift into a bear and Kyra discards to use her healing ability. There are four Cure cards between the group's starting decks. It's kind of intense to see the teams draw piles dwindle down so much, especially because my Original Heroes didn't have many ways to heal so they were forced to conserve their cards. One thing Lem and the Women lack, at least at the start of the adventure, is magical weapons. Lini found a Ghost living in the Farmhouse. Over and over again, she encountered the Ghost, and over and over again, I had to shuffle the Ghost back into the location deck. Lem discovered the Amulet of Mighty Fists which gives a combat strength check the Magic trait. However, he was never able to get it to Lini in time. The Blessings Deck ran out and I lost. This was a fun scenario as I experimented with a new set of characters. Hopefully, I will have things in order for next time.

Lem and the Women scratch their heads as they try and figure out how they lost.


d10-1d10-0 1/30/14
This was a very exciting play. Lem and the Women took on Brigadoom! for the second time, and won! I know that some people find the game easy, but I am coming to understand that I can't take the difficulty level for granted. What was so great about this game was the new cards I'd never seen before. Lini found a Holy Candle which let's you shuffle 1d6 cards back into the Blessings Deck. That's huge! I encountered Dance with The Squealy Nord for the first time. I was very excited to finally encounter it. This was my eighth game since I received the promo cards. It took me two tries to get that pig. I found my other promo card, Birdcruncher Crown, also for the first time. Unfortunately, I failed to acquire it. Amiri found the Ghost, this time in the Woods. However, the end of the game was where the real excitement happened. I had four cards left in the Blessings Deck and four locations still open. Lini's turn: She played Detect Magic to look at the top card of the Wooden Bridge. Jubrayl! I put him back on top of the location deck. Amiri's turn: She headed over to the Academy, encountered the final card, and closed the location. She then used her power to move to the Waterfront. Lem's turn: He moved to the Farmhouse and waited. Kyra's turn and final Blessings card: She moved to the Wooden Bridge and encountered Jubrayl. Amiri and Lem temporarily close there locations and Kyra plunged her mace into the side of Jubrayl's head. Victory!

Jubrayl takes a mace to the head



Read HEROBERRY JUICE for my further Pathfinder adventures.


I will stop reporting plays of Pathfinder on this GeekList, but that does not mean I will stop playing. I've entered Pathfinder into the 100 Play Challenge. I have also created a blog, called Heroberry Juice, where I will chronicle my 100 plays and my heroes' many adventures. Feel free to follow along.
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2. Family: Ticket to Ride
Ryan Mayes
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TICKET TO RIDE
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Ticket to Ride is hands down my favorite game. I love it and want to make sure I play it a bunch this year. I listed this one as a board game family rather than a specific game. It won't matter which version or map I play on, it will count as a play.



d10-1 1/28/14
Played a three player game tonight of Ticket to Ride: India with my wife and sister. I really enjoy this map although my wife doesn't. It's a very take-that version of Ticket to Ride because it's very easy to cut someone completely off. There are parts of the map that just don't connect. If you don't get your trains down, and someone else does, you're fast out of luck. Take a look at the Southern region of India and you'll see that red, my wife, completely dominated the map. The cities Bezwada, Indur, and Waltain are cut off for every other color. I think the looping bonus creates friction between players because everyone is trying for secondary bonuses and playing trains on routes they wouldn't usually take. I played a new strategy tonight. I didn't attempt any of the bonuses. Instead I racked up the tickets, and it worked! I won with 108 points to my sister's 104 and my wife's 96.



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3. Board Game: Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:35]
Ryan Mayes
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ROBINSON CRUSOE
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I got Robinson Crusoe from my Secret Soloist during the 2014 Secret Soloist Gift Exchange. I am super excited to play this. I also think it will be very interesting to compare this game with Castaways. Yes, they are both games about being stranded on an island, but I am told they can exist in the same collection. We shall see, won't we.



d10-1 8/11/14
I played the Castaways scenario and got beat to a pulp. I managed to get a bunch of wood for the fire fairly quickly. Then I focused on building my shelter, roof, and palisade. (I'm still not too sure what the palisade does.) Unfortunately, I got a few threat cards in a row that stopped my wood production. I made a mistake where I explored hoping to get discovery tokens that gave me things. I should have gathered resources to make up for the wood I wasn't producing.

Then the big blow came. I rolled four rain clouds and I didn't have enough resources. I lost eight life and went down three morale levels in one go. That was pretty much the end of my Cook. I knew I couldn't win, but I hoped I could at least survive until the end of round 12. The storm glass and some very lucky die rolls helped me last until the last round, but the Cook didn't make it. She cut herself pretty badly trying to make a pot and that was the end.

I definitely see how I spent too much time doing things that didn't help me and ignored the things that could. I really look forward to another play so I can try and get a better handle on everything. This is definitely a game where I don't have enough time to do all the things I want to do, and in a good way. The Castaways scenario is interesting because you need wood to win, but you also need wood to increase your chance of surviving.



Here's the game at the end. The poor Cook didn't make it. I also had to sacrifice Friday to survive. He died killing a beast for me. It gave me enough food to heal up a little and survive two more rounds. I do wish I could have found out what happened to the snake who crawled into my extra clothes, the bush that snagged my arm, and the spider that fell on my head. Maybe next time.

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4. Board Game: Castaways [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:1034]
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CASTAWAYS
PLAY COUNT

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There's something about this game that really jumps out at me. I love the idea of being stranded on an island. Not only do you need to try and get rescued, but you also need to survive while waiting to be rescued. Plus, I love the HELP spelled out in rocks on the box cover.



d10-1 1/8/14
My first solo play and it was a terrible loss. At least I found a dog and didn't eat him. My character was Juana María Nicolás, a cook. Read my report [listitem=3009116]here[/listitem].

d10-2 1/31/14
I played a two player game of Castaways today with my sister. I played the Tough Guy and she played a Fisherwoman. It was a rather clumsy play as I didn't have a good handle on teaching her the rules. I realized, that last game I made a big rules mistake. Whenever a card told me to put a food tile into the supply, I put it in the storage bin instead of the supply stack next to the Forage action. Oops. No wonder I had a ton of food last game. Oh well. Today's game wasn't as exciting as the last game but that's probably because we didn't get terrible far. I died. I had a three traumas and a full rack of wounds. I was exploring and could have either returned to camp, where we had a unlit fire and no food and die that night, or I could keep exploring and hope to get lucky. I did not get lucky. I got bitten by a snake and died. My sister couldn't live with the grief and decided not to go on. Still a very fun and very interesting experience. I look forward to more plays.

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5. Board Game: The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:928] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
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COMPLETED


THE HUNTERS
PLAY COUNT

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The Hunters is a seemingly incredible game about German U-Boat warfare during the beginning of World War II. I am fascinated by the subject, theme, and history of this game.I fully expect to get at least 10 plays this year. There's a book on World War II U-Boats by Clay Blair I think I am going to read this year as well. Like I said, I am fascinated by the subject.



d10-1 2/20/2014
I finally got The Hunters to the table and it was great. I spent most of the game flipping back and forth through the rulebook because it's been almost a month since I read it. Also, I'm sure I made a handful of mistakes. But that's okay because this was a rather uneventful campaign.

The Relatively Uneventful Career of Kommandant Hans Schulze



September 1939 - U-31, a type VIIA U-Boat set sail for it's first patrol. KMDT Schulze was tasked with a minelaying mission in the British Isles. He completed his mission but encountered no ships during his first patrol.

November 1939 - Another successful minelaying mission. On this patrol, Schulze discovered two small tankers and both were unescorted, each an easy kill. Tonnage: 10,600.

January 1940 - A third minelaying mission, and again no contacts. However, U-31 was attacked by aircraft on it's first pass through the Bay of Biscay. Luckily, Schulze was able to dive before the aircraft made a second attack run, and he avoided detection. The boat only suffered a damaged flak gun.

March 1940 - Finally, KMDT Schulze was given a standard patrol, although it was once again through the British Isles. He encountered a convoy! However, he only damaged a single ship that escaped his grasp when he tried to follow. Feeling rathe depressed and worried about the report his superiors expected, he took the watch, up top, as the boat made it's way home through the Bay of Biscay. He was never heard from again. Perhaps a wave washed him overboard.

Total Tonnage: 10,600

d10-2 3/5/2014
I played a short game in order to get some practice for the eight week tournament.

September 1939 - Kmdt Georg Thurmann launched his first command and the maiden voyage of U-83. Getting to know how his VIIB handled was different than he expected. He easily crash-dived to avoid an air attack, while traveling to the British Isles. However, he lost contact with his first ship when he waited until night to attack. He sunk two freighters with ease and then discovered the Ark Royal. A capital ship on his first patrol! He sent everything he had at the Ark Royal but his boat was packed with too many duds. He damaged the capital ship but not before U-83 lost a diesel engine forcing Thurmann to abort the patrol.

December 1939 - During his second patrol Thurmann encountered only one ship, the Brandon. He successfully sunk the boat, but U-83 was heavily damaged by depth charges and Thurmann was seriously wounded. He was laid up in hospital for five months. When he returned to active duty, he was given a new boat.

June 1940 - Thurmann's first patrol back was a minelaying mission in the British Isles. He hoped to easily break in U-99. Although she was a VIIB, she did not swim like his U-83. Whether he was regaining his legs or he was unprepared for combat, this patrol did not go well. He successfully laid the mines, then he encountered a convoy. He sunk the City of Mandaly, but was unable to escape the attack from the convoy's escort. U-99 suffered so much damage, refit took four months.

Total Tonnage: 29,800

d10-33/12/14
Week one of The Hunters - Eight Week Tournament II

September 1940 - Helmut von Lüth was born for the sea. Ever since he could remember the sea called out to him. He understood it now. All those years, the songs of the sea led him to U-74. He now had his own command of a brand new boat. He knew, just by looking at her, that she was special. It was his time, and he would be glorious.

Kmdt Lüth knew U-74 was ready for anything when, during her first transit, she encountered an enemy aircraft. Luckily, his 1WO spotted the plane in time for a crash dive. U-74 continued on to the designated coordinates and successfully planted her mines. As she traveled through the British Isles she encountered a convoy: two large freighters and two tankers. Kmdt Lüth ignored the Ensis and Cherokee and set his sights on the Caledonia (9900T) and the Vancouver Island (9500T). He sailed into close range, but his torpedo barrage was only enough to damage both ships. He escaped detection, followed the damaged ships, and attacked again. He fired from medium range and sunk both ships; however, he was unable to escape detection the second time. U-74 sustained damage to her Hydrophones and Diesel Engines. The crew was able to repair the Diesel Engines but the Hydrophones remained inoperable for the rest of the patrol. As the boat was leaving the British Isles, Lüth encountered an unescorted freighter, the Rio Tercero (4900T). The deck guns made easy work of the small ship.

Patrol Tonnage: 24,300

November 1939 - After a quick refit, Kmdt Lüth took U-74 out for her second patrol. Command allowed him a choice of patrols, and immediately upon entering the British Isles he encountered a convoy of four large freighters. He decided to hunt down the Protesilaus (9600T) and Moldanger (6800T). The Robert E. Lee and Kennebec were allowed to sail away as he positioned U-74 at medium range to destroy his target. Both ships were sunk and Kmdt Lüth escaped detection. Only a few days after the convoy, U-74 encountered the CVE Audacity. A capital ship! Lüth sailed U-74 into close range but was detected by the Audacity's escort. Luckily, the depth charges were ineffective and U-74 was able to escape detection. After the waters cleared, the Audacity was nowhere to be found.

Patrol Tonnage: 16,400

January 1940 - After another short refit, U-74 was back on patrol to the British Isles. Almost at once, Kmdt Lüth encountered another convoy of four large freighters. He came upon them at night and decided to take a shot at each ship from medium range. He sunk the first ship, Ville de Mons (7500T); damaged the Louisiane and Beacon Grange; but missed the Manaar. U-74 escaped detection after the first attack. The damaged ships remained under escort and Kmdt Lüth followed. He dearly wanted to finish them off. His second attack sunk the Louisiane (7000T) and inflicted more damage on the Beacon Grange. However, Lüth did not escape detection a second time. The escort scored four hits damaging an Electric Engine, the Flak Gun, and caused hull damage with flooding. The engineers were able to get the flooding under control. U-74 successfully exceeded test depth, and the boat was able to escape a second detection. After two attacks, the Beacon Grange (10100T) was too damaged to stay with her escort. U-74 easily finished her off.

As he kept sailing Lüth discovered an escorted large freighter, Anselm (6000T). He snuck into close range, destroyed the freighter, and snuck out while escaping detection. Before he left the British Isles, Lüth encountered another larger freighter sailing alone. The Empire Thunder (6000T) was easy pickings as Lüth saved his final torpedo and destroyed the freighter with the deck guns. Feeling very satisfied with his third patrol he sailed through the transit with a little too much confidence. The crew didn't detect the aircraft bearing down on them until it was too late. Luckily, the pilot must have been green because one of the two hits glanced off the bow, causing zero damage. The other hit, however, caused flooding and a light injury to 1WO. The crew avoided a second attack and sailed home for a little shore leave.

Crew Advancement: 2WO --> Experte

Patrol Tonnage: 36,600

Total Tonnage: 77,300

d10-4 3/18/14
Week two of The Hunters - Eight Week Tournament II

April 1940 - After a restful refit, Kmdt Lüth was ready to continue his successful career. He kept telling himself that he wasn't letting such high tonnage get to his head. However, someone in command must have thought differently, because they sent him to the frozen seas of Norway. Lüth didn't mind. He was a soldier first and would continue his success wherever they sent him. The first couple weeks didn't give him much hope as the waters were quiet. His spirit lifted when he discovered his first ship. It was a large freighter: the Thomas McKean (7200T). He found her at night and decided to attack from medium range. Result! Four steam torpedoes found there mark and three explosions were heard. A very fortunate encounter. Soon after escaping detection, U-74 snuck up on a capital ship! This time, Lüth wouldn't let her get away. He opted for a night surface attack at close range. He fired everything he had at the CVE Avenger (12,800T) but only one torpedo detonated. Luck, again, was on the Kmdt's side as U-74 escaped detection once again. He followed the damaged capital ship and engaged her for the second time. This time Lüth sent his electrics into battle, and 3 torpedoes detonated. It was enough to send the Avenger into the frozen depths. The escort wasn't going to let U-74 get away. The U-boat suffered 7 depth charge hits before she escaped. The Xb was in the area but Lüth turned down the resupply. U-74 had hull damage and her periscope, flak guns, and hydrophones (those dang hydrophones) were all inoperable. Happy with his patrol but disappointed because that KC was so close he could taste it, Lüth sailed home without incident and settled in for a three month refit.

Tonnage: 20,000

Total Tournament Tonnage:97,300

d10-5 3/18/14
I decided to enter pusherman42's March Hunters challenge. I have to say that I'm really glad I did because I got creamed by an escort during 1941. I hadn't made it to 1941 before and things really change. I learned that I needed to switch up my tactics the later it gets in the war. I would have messed up my tournament if I hadn't learned this lesson. I decided to not keep notes this time and just play the game. It was a fun way to do it, but I do like creating the narrative afterward.

Here are the facts: U-37, type IXA, began Sept. 1939, 7 patrols, 17 ships sunk, 115,000 tons, destroyed on patrol Jan. 1941.

d10-6 3/19/14
I attempted another campaign but did not make it to the end. It was a pretty terrible career, if you ask me. U-39 was sunk at the start of its fifth patrol. Kmdt. Viktor Shutze sunk 7 ships for a total of 27,100 tons. It's very interesting to see how successful some campaigns can be while others are an utter disaster. It's also wild to see how distressing it is to lose your crew and sub. I really enjoy the immersion this game gives me, and the insight it provides into this portion of WWII.

d10-7 3/25/14
Week three of The Hunters - Eight Week Tournament II

August 1940 - Kmdt von Lüth stepped aboard U-74 after a disturbing three months of refit. A recurring dream was bothering him. Every night it was the same. He set sail for a new patrol and immediately upon entering the Bay of Biscay he was spotted by enemy aircraft. He tried to dive but it was too late. Aircraft fire shot down his beloved boat. It was just a dream he kept telling himself, but he just couldn't shake his bad feeling about the coming patrol.

His patrol was, once again, the British Isles. He braced himself as U-74 entered the Bay of Biscay. He was waiting for an announcement of enemy aircraft. Waiting. Waiting. He jumped when there was a tap on his shoulder. His 1WO was handing him a rabbit's foot. "It was my Oma's," he said. "Here, take it. It looks like you need it." It was just the thing to take the edge off. Helmut von Lüth was now ready for this patrol. (I rolled a special event and received a Hals und Beinbruch.)

The waters were quiet until U-74 came upon an escorted small freighter, the Aeas (4700T). von Lüth came upon her at night from medium range, and easily sunk the freighter. He was detected and U-74 took 3 hits: damage to the hull, fuel tanks, and diesel engine number 2. As the escort came around for a second attack, U-74 exceeded test depth and escaped detection. The crew was able to repair the both the fuel tanks and the diesel engine. No more ships were sighted. At the end of the patrol, however, U-74 was greeted by the resupply ship. This time, Kmdt von Lüth accepted resupply and went back out to sea. He did not receive more torpedoes but having only fired 3, von Lüth was comfortable with his ammunition supply. During the second phase of the patrol, U-74 only encountered an unescorted small freighter. The Torny (2400T) was an easy kill. U-74 sailed home without further incident.

For sinking 100,000 tons, Kmdt Helmut von Lüth was awarded the Knight's Cross. He did not qualify for a U-boat upgrade.

Helmut von Lüth also received a promotion to KKpt.

Tonnage: 7,100

December 1940 - With a shiny new Knight's Cross adorning his chest, Kmdt von Lüth and U-74 set sail for the British Isles in what would be their final voyage together. Upon entering the British Isles, U-74 encountered an unescorted large freighter. The West Notus (5500T) was easily sunk. No commotion for this patrol until the last day in British waters. A capital ship! U-74 sighted the BB Barham (31,100T). Firing from long range, Kmdt von Lüth sent off four torpedoes. Only one hit the target. However, no explosion was heard. "Please, please, please," Kmdt von Lüth began to pray. He closed his eyes and put his hand in his pocket. The lucky rabbit's foot was still there. He gave it a rub and BOOOOOM! Music to his ears. The torpedo was not a dud after all. (I rolled a dud but used my Hals und Beinbruch to reroll. The second roll was a live torpedo.) The Barham was damaged. The escort sent down depth charges and U-74 took hull damage but the sub was able to exceed test depth and escape a second detection.

U-74 followed the Barham because Kmdt von Lüth was going to finish her off no matter what. He opted for a night surface attack from medium range. He fired 1 steam and 3 electrics. All four hit, but two were duds. 2 more damage still wasn’t enough to sink the Barham so he fired his last loaded torpedo from the rear. The electric hit, and the Barham was sunk. U-74 escaped detection and sailed safely home.

Sinking the Barham was a feat so worthy that Kmdt von Lüth was awarded the Oakleaves.

Kmdt von Lüth earned the chance upgrade his U-boat, so he took it. He was proud of the U-74 but sinking the Barham caused his blood to rage with excitement. He wanted back out into the ocean as fast as possible. He was given the U-134, a type VIIC.

The crew increased to veteran level.

Tonnage: 36,600

Total Tonnage for the tournament so far: 141,000

This game I used the custom patrol map created by Lines42. It was very cool to see my U-boat move around the Atlantic Ocean. It gave a very interesting sense of scale for the game and the war.



d10-84/2/14
I just finished my week four patrols for the The Hunters - Eight Week Tournament II. I continue to destroy allied shipping. I successfully escaped detection four times. I must have the greatest U-boat captain at the helm, because I am doing so awesome. I keep waiting for something really bad to happen, like having my Kmdt washed overboard. I'll just continue to rub my lucky rabbit's foot.

February 1941 - Kmdt Helmut von Lüth set off in his brand new type VIIC U-134. Feeling very confident with his Oakleaves, he sailed into the Bay of Biscay. An aircraft immediately spotted the U-Boat and his crew weren't able to dive in time. The aircraft got off one attack that damaged the fuel tanks. The explosion killed a handful of crew and lightly wounded some others. Kmdt von Lüth looked on in horror. His nightmare was coming true. The engineers were unable to repair the fuel tanks, so U-134 aborted patrol and sailed back home.

Tonnage: 0

April 1941 - The Kmdt spent the entire refit living aboard U-134. He would not let something like that happen again, so he wanted to know every inch of the boat. When the next patrol began, he was ready to take his new boat to the Atlantic. He would not let his crew die needlessly. Upon reaching the Atlantic waters, U-134 encountered a convoy of two small freighters and two large freighters. It was day time when he came upon the Broompark, Clan Chisholm, Tornliebank, and Baron Blythswod. However, he lost contact when he waited until night to attack. He then came upon an unescorted ship. The Willimantic (4600T) was easy pickings as U-134 sunk the lonely ship.

Kmdt von Lüth was finally getting the feel for his new ship when he encountered another convoy. This one was made of three large freighters and a small freighter. Luckily he discovered them at night and fired his torpedoes at long range, one for each boat. He hit the Hurunui, Sultan Star (12,300T), and the Sliedrecht (5000T), but missed the Santa Rita. The Sliedrecht was sunk from the force of the blast. The other two ships were only damaged. U-134 escaped detection and decided to follow the damaged ships. They lost their escort, so Kmdt von Lüth followed the Sultan Star. She was easy to finish off. U-134 sailed home without further incident. When Kmdt von Lüth stepped out of the U-boat, he knew he could do anything in his new ship.

Tonnage: 21,900

June 1941 - Back out to the Atlantic. U-134 encountered a convoy of two large freighters, a small freighter and a tanker. Kmdt von Lüth decided to engage them during daylight, so he fired two electric torpedoes. Ignoring the Aenos and Scottish Maiden, he aimed at the Malabar (8000T) and hit, as well as the Scottish Maiden, which he missed. Damaged, the Malabar lost her escort and U-134 finished her off.

After a week and a half of no contact, Kmdt von Lüth encountered another convoy. Again, it consisted of two large freighters, a small freighter, and a tanker. U-134 waited until night to fire upon the Umtata (8100T), the San Florentino (12,800T), the Gro, and the Cherokee. He fired one torpedo, from long range, at each boat, hitting the Umtata and San Florentino. The Umtata was damaged, but the San Florentino went up in a massive explosion. U-134 escaped detection and followed the Umtata. She retained her escort so U-134 fired again from long range. Two torpedoes hit their target, and the Umtata was sunk. Once again, U-134 sailed away undetected and headed safely home.

Tonnage: 28,900

Total Tonnage for the tournament so far: 191,800

d10-9 4/7/2014
Here is my entry for week five of the The Hunters - Eight Week Tournament II

August 1941 - U-134 and crew were assigned back to the Atlantic. Kmdt von Lüth was happy with this assignment because he had done so well during his last few patrols. He encountered no trouble on his way through European waters, and his two weeks showed no sign of Allied shipping. But that was not to last. U-134 encountered a convoy of two large freighters and two tankers: The SS Browning (5300T), the Maasdam (8800T), the Empire Wave, and the Scottish Minstrel (7000T). He waited until night to attack and fired four steam torpedoes at long range, one at each target. Four hits! The SS Browning was sunk immediately. The other three ships were only damaged. U-134 was detected by the convoy's escorts but only suffered minor damage. Kmdt von Lüth maneuvered his boat away and the escorts were unable to find them again.

He followed the damaged boats who remained under escort. Once again he fired from long range at night: 2 steam torpedoes at the Maasdam, and one each at the other two ships. The Maasdam was sunk, the Empire Wave was missed, and the Scottish Minstrel was hit, but with a dud. Once again, the escorts missed the u-boat.

Kmdt von Lütt was hungry for these ships and followed again. The two ships remained under escort and U-134 fired two electrics at each ship. The Empire Wave was missed again, but the Scottish Minstrel was hit by both torpedoes and sunk. The escorts were pretty ticked at von Lüth's attacks and sent down their depth charges and caused hull damage. The second round of depth charges caused flooding. Kmdt von Lüth escaped before the escorts could do any more damage. He kept his eye on the Empire Wave but decided to let her go when her escort wouldn't leave her side.

On the way out of the Atlantic, U-134 came across a small freighter sailing alone. The Culebra (3000t) was easily sunk. The Kmdt then took the boys home.

KMDT Helmut von Lüth earned a promotion to FKpt.
The 1WO became gained Experte status.

Tonnage: 24,100

Ryan's note: This patrol took me to 215,900 tons. I needed 216,000 tons to gain the KCO+S. So close!

u]November 1941[/u] - For such fine performance, Command gave a permanent assignment to KMDT von Lüth. The Arctic was to be his new home. His first patrol seemed rather quiet until the final leg of the patrol. U-134 discovered a convoy of 1 large freighter, 1 tanker, and 2 small freighters. He came upon them at night and fired four steam torpedoes from long range. One at the Jose de Larrinaga (5200T), two at the Torinia (10,000T), and one at the Pandias (5000T). KMDT von Lüth left the Merisaar alone. His torpedo missed the the Jose de Larrinaga. Yet, he scored two hits and sunk the Torinia. His last torpedo damaged the Pandias. U-134 was unable to escape detection and suffered damage to the deck gun, flooding, and a lightly wounded crew. Once again, the escorts attacked, damaging diesel engine #2 and the hull. U-134 exceeded test depth and escaped a third round of attacks. The crew was unable to repair the deck guns, but got the diesel engine operational in no time.

KMDT von Lüth wouldn't let the Pandias escape so he followed the escorted ship. From long range, he let loose all four torpedoes and sunk the freighter. U-134 was long gone before the escorts knew what hit 'em. With, another successful mission in the books, KMDT von Lüth sailed his crew safely home. His boys would enjoy the extra month of R&R. and the KMDT went to the capital to receive his Swords.

KMDT von Lüth was awarded the Knight's Cross with Oakleaves and Swords!
He received an U-Boat Upgrade but decided to keep it.

Tonnage: 15,000

Total tonnage in the tournament so far: 230,900

d10-0 4/8/14
I played my game today for the April Hunters Challenge - Up Close and Personal. I decided to do very little book keeping. Halfway through the game, I decided to stop keeping track of the ship names. That's also because I encountered three convoys on one patrol and ran out of space on the log sheet.

The challenge was to see how many ships you could sink at close range. I used a IXA U-Boat starting in September of 1939. I sailed 10 patrols sinking 24 ships at close range for a total of 147,600 tons. I upgraded to the IXC in April 1941, and was sunk in May of 1941. The new U-Boat must have been bad luck because she didn't even make it one patrol. I think I put up a pretty good showing for the challenge, and it felt very nice to not keep any notes. With or without notes, this game is so good.

As you can see, I stopped writing down the ships' names halfway through the game. I do have to say that without the names, you lose a lot of the historical flavor of the game.



Hitler's U-Boat War: The Hunters 1939-1942 by Clay Blair unread
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6. Board Game: Flash Point: Fire Rescue [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:255]
Ryan Mayes
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Gilbert
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FLASH POINT: FIRE RESCUE
PLAY COUNT

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There's something so unique and special about Flash Point that really strikes a chord for me. This is another game that saw more than 10 plays during 2013. I'm looking forward to bravely battling some fires, and I'm looking forward to painting the miniatures this year too.



d10-1 1/1/14
January 1st and I already have two plays, I like how this year is starting off. We played a 5-player experienced game in the Beach House. We played with the CAFS Firefighter, Structural Engineer, Veteran, Imaging Technician, and Fire Captain. I think it was a pretty strong team but we just couldn't get a handle on the fire. We got creamed. All three hazmats blew up, we lost four victims, and we only saved one person.

d10-2 1/1/14
We played a second 5-player game right after and had an even worse outcome. Experienced game in the Beach House again. It was awful. I think we lost within 3 rounds. I do believe we had a pretty terrible group of firefighters: Hazmat Technician, Paramedic, Rescue Dog, Generalist, and Imaging Technician. But on a high note, my wife said how much she loves the game. Which only means she'll keep asking to bring it out. Tonight was my 20th and 21st plays of Flash Point and we still haven't gotten past the first board. I have all the expansions waiting for me.

d10-3 1/7/14
I played a solo game of Flash Point using the Fire Academy Challenge #1. I played with three firefighters: Fire Captain, Generalist, and Paramedic. It was a pretty easy game but I only scored 96 points (20 under par). Read about it [listitem=3011100]here[/listitem].

d10-4 1/8/14
Another solo game where I tried to better my previous score. The conditions were the exact same. Fire Academy Challenge #1, same firefighters, and same starting positions. I rocked the scenario. All ten victims rescued and I score 116 points. Read about it [listitem=3011100]here[/listitem].

d10-5 1/28/14
We played a three player game at the Beach House on the Recruit difficulty. I was the Generalist, my wife was the Driver/Operator, and my sister was the Rescue Dog. I have to say, this was a rather boring game. The Driver/Operator kept blasting the fires and there kind of wasn't much to do. We made a group decision, that instead of switching roles when the fires died down, to keep the Drover/Operator and continue blasting the fires. There were times when the Driver/Operator only extinguished a single smoke. However, it kept the fire down. It was a strong victory. At the end of the game, we still had 16 cubes left, two unexploded hazmats, and only lost one victim.



d10-6 2/10/14
In the February SGOYT, I ran a mini Flash Point Challenge. I decided to try out the challenge for myself. Boy, did I set up a tough scenario. It's the Ranch House on Veteran. I played with three firefighters: the Generalist, Fire Captain, and Paramedic. The first thing I did was have the Generalist and Fire Captain chop holes in the East and North sides of the house. My hope was to run in and grab the victims. Unfortunately, I ignored the fire, and the fire was out of control before the end of the second round. It was not pretty, and I knew I didn't have long. The Paramedic saved a few people so that was a small bonus. I did manage to save four victims and clear one hazmat (45 points) before the house collapsed on my brave firefighters.



d10-7 2/10/14
After losing the previous game, I set it up again. This time I added a fourth firefighter, the Driver/Operator, to help out the team. This game started out more promising than the first. I immediately attacked the fire. Saving victims was secondary to extinguishing the fire. My thought was that the victims would be safe if there was no fire to get them. It worked for a little while, until I started getting unlucky with explosions. I also decided to ignore hazmats. That kind of worked out, until three of the four hazmats exploded. For awhile my firefighters found themselves in a nice loop where the Fire Captain would bring victims to the Paramedic. She would heal them and the Generalist would walk them to safety. It worked well for three victims, but then the fire spread and the Generalist and Fire Captain found themselves trapped. The house collapsed on my firefighters again, but after they saved 5 victims (50 points).



d10-84/2/14
I played a solo game for my April Flash Point Challenge. It's called Will You Please Save My Pets, Please?

I played the challenge this morning. Boy, do I find this side of the board difficult. I started off with a great first few turns. I saved two victims and a hazmat almost immediately. I thought the game was going to be smooth sailing. But no. My firefighters kept getting hit by the fire. I think that happened five times. One time, I had two firefighters on the same space with a victim. That was tough when I rolled for fire on that space.

I did get lucky because the majority of my victims were on the bottom half of the board. I used the Rescue Specialist to run back and forth, carrying them to the Ambulance. I did break a hole through the wall on the east and north side. It made it easier to save the dog and cat, and I got both of them. But in the end, I lost the house. I thought about letting the dog die, losing the 10 points, but I didn't.

I also played with the Fire Captain and CAFS Firefighter. I think I had a pretty solid team. I've never played with that combination before. In fact, I don't think the Rescue Specialist gets much play time in my house. After seeing Jacob use her in his video, I realized how strong of a character she is. I plan on giving the Rescue Specialist some regular play in the future.

Here is the board at the end:


You can see that the Rescue Specialist was carrying the final victim. She would have made it if I could have lasted two more turns.

d10-9 4/16/14
This play was part of MALAIS-E-CON 2014

I wanted another crack at my April Flash Point Challenge.

This was a really smooth game. I guess that means I designed a fairly easy challenge after all. I went with four firefighters this time. The Fire Captain, Rescue Specialist, CAFS, and Driver/Operator. I usually only run with three but I wanted the Driver/Operator to blast the fire. I got lucky because both the dog and the cat were discovered in the bottom half of the board so they both rand to the southeast corner. In fact, most of the POIs were found in the southeast corner. All I really had to do was run back and forth between the ambulance. I only had the ambulance in two spaces the entire game. I was also lucky because there were three explosions that hit POIs and every time, it was a blank one. I would say that things were working in favor of my firefighters today.

The end of the game. The fire was mostly concentrated in the northeast and southwest corners of the house.

10 Victims rescued = 100
Dog and Cat both rescued = 0
2 Hazmats disposed = 10
5 Damage Markers remaining = 10
Win = 10

Total = 130 points!

d10-0 4/22/14
My mother-in-law was over last night so we taught her Flash Point. We played the basic game on the easy side of the board. This was a game that she understood and had fun playing. We lost because the house collapsed. It was pretty funny because the house collapsed on my mother-in-law's side of the board. There wasn't anything she really could have done differently. My wife and I were busy trying to save victims while we let my mother-in-law fight the fire. We were racing against the clock and just couldn't pull it off.

I have to say, I love this game. If it's not clear from my earlier entries, this is one of my favorites. Probably my number two. This was my 10th play of the year, but my 29th play overall. Even after all this time, I do not find the game boring. We played on the easy side with the basic rules. For all arguments I should be bored with that play. But, no. I think this really speaks for what a great game this is, and I'm really happy I added it to my 10x10 Challenge.
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7. Board Game: Lords of Waterdeep [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:50]
Ryan Mayes
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Gilbert
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LORDS OF WATERDEEP
PLAY COUNT

yellowtrainyellowtrainyellowtrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrain


Lords of Waterdeep is a recent acquisition. I was looking forward to playing it and I thought it would be enjoyable, but I never imagined how much I would love it. This game is great. It was one of my favorites of 2013. I can't wait to get this to the table 10 more times.



d10-1 3/24/14
I brought Lords of Waterdeep to game night, and we were able to play it. That surprised me because usually my game group is in for old standbys. We played a four-player game. I didn't do a very good job explaining the rules, but everyone picked up on the game really quickly. I think that is a testament to the game because the concepts are very easy to grasp. We had a fun time and everyone liked it (I think). The game was surprisingly close. I didn't play very well, and I only completed 3 quests. My previous games were with two players, and it's very different to play with only two agents when I am used to having four of them. The game scales really well and is a very different experience with more players. I really like this game and it continues to be more fun than I expect.



d10-2 4/11/14
Played a two-player game with my sister today. I might like this game better with less players. In a two-player game, each player starts the game with four actions. In a four-player game, each player starts with only two actions. It sure feels like there is less to do each turn. That's probably a good thing because if everyone in a four-player game had four actions, the game would take forever. What can I say, I like more actions. We got some good powers this game. I got to draw an Intrigue Card every time I acquired a Wizard. I also got to place two buildings from the stack for free. My sister was allowed to to use an occupied space every round. I forgot to write down the scores but I scored over 200 points. In the last game, only two out of the four of us broke 100. Waterdeep really does it for me. It's easy, it's fun, and it feels like I am constantly accomplishing something. I'm surprised that my sister likes it because fantasy and D&D aren't really her thing. I'm hoping to dive into Skullport soon.

For some reason, neither of us really wanted any buildings this game.


d10-3 4/15/14
This play was part of MALAIS-E-CON 2014

I played the Simple solo variant this time around. The solo variant works where you roll a d12 and you place the opponents workers on the corresponding spaces. The opponent doesn't take money or adventurers, he just gains points. That makes this pretty much a points grabbing fest.

It's half-way through the game and the opponent (red) is beating me by 32 points. Yikes!


One thing that is really interesting about this variant is how quests work. When the opponent takes a quest card he immediately completes it. He gains the reward then subtracts the costs of the resources needed to complete it. Let's say he completes a quest worth 25 VPs. It cost him 5 Wizards and 2 dollars to succeed on the quest. He subtracts the cost, which was 11 (10 VPs for the Wizards and 1 VP for the money). He then gains a total of 14 points. Sometimes this worked in his favor and sometimes this didn't. There were a few times where it cost him the same to complete the quest. One quest even cost him more to complete than it was worth, but he also got two Intrigue cards out of the deal.

The board at game's end. I ended up winning by 11 points!


I really enjoyed the solo variant. I think I will give it some more table time. The theme got a little lost because I was more focused on what would earn me more points and what would earn him less. I also think that might be the result of the Lord I had. He gained extra points at the end for every quest he completed over 10 VPs. Therefore, I didn't really care about the type of quest, I just took the most expensive ones.

I ended the game with 220 points and 14 completed quests. The opponent had 211 and also completed 14 quests. Considering, it was a pretty close (and fun) game.

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8. Board Game: Everything vs. Everything [Average Rating:7.58 Unranked]
Ryan Mayes
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Gilbert
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EEVERYTHING VS. EVERYTHING
PLAY COUNT

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Everything vs. Everything is a print-and-play game by Chad Mestagh. He gave me a Printer Studio set of the cards so I thought I would play it for my 10x10 challenge. It's a fun looking game where you get to play all sorts of characters from popular culture. It's called the Extreme Copyright Infringement Edition.


d10-1 6/17/2014
My team: Master Chief, Super Mario, Testsuo, Dr. Doug Ross, Professor X, and Optimus Prime.
The Director's team: Spider-Man, Seperoth, Darth Vader, Penelope Pitstop, and Alice.

I got thoroughly stomped. I really didn't expect any less because I was learning the game. I didn't pick characters based on compatibility and strengths, I picked them based on how cool they were. The game has a nice drafting mechanic for picking your team, but I ignored that. I went straight for Dr. Doug Ross. This was really fun even though I got creamed. I survived all ten rounds but finished the game with a score of -82. Yikes! But really, anything over 0 is a victory.

The game in progress. It's turn three and all my guys are still alive.


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9. Board Game: Paperback [Average Rating:7.33 Overall Rank:304]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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Paperback
PLAY COUNT

yellowtrainyellowtrainyellowtrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrainwhitetrain


My mother kickstarted Paperback and gave it to me as a present. This game is basically a word game version of Dominion. I don't really like Dominion but something about Paperback really excited me. It was a great surprise when it showed up in the mail. I am looking forward to playing this a bunch this year. I assume, most games will be with my wife.



d10-1 3/27/14
Played my first game of Paperback with my wife and father. It was really fun. The artwork is really cool and it draws you into the game. It took us awhile to get the hang of the way things worked. Many of the cards have special abilities that weren't always apparent how they would help in the game. However, as the game went on, we all got the hang of things. It was really funny to see us misspell so many words. One thing we noticed was that it gets difficult to spell words with so many cards in your hand. Later in the game, it's possible to get 9 (or more) cards in one turn. We decided it was okay if we splayed our cards out on the table trying to come up with words. In the end, I lost horribly. I only had 26 points. My wife won with 43 and my dad had 38. I'm really looking forward to playing this again.

d10-2 5/25/14
I was with my family for the Memorial Day weekend so we broke out Paperback. It was fun to play this with my mom because she got the game for me. The game went over really well. I found paperback just as fun the second time. I played terribly again. My dad won with 41 points. My sister came in second with 40 and my wife had 36. Sorry mom, I forgot your score. I only scored 20 points. Man, I really need to get my strategy together.

Here is Paperback at setup. I really like how the face up cards change the beginning strategies of the game.


d10-3 7/18/14
Had a really nice game of Paperback with my wife. It was fun to squeeze the game on a tiny table in a coffee shop. It's funny to me because this game doesn't seem to be that big of a game, but it really has a large footprint. This was a really interesting game. We tied! We each had 32 points and each had one common-letter card (the tie breaker). I wonder if this is because of poor play and planning on my part or if the game isn't really balanced for two players. Here's what I mean: In a two-player game, there are four 5¢ wilds, four 7¢ wilds, and four common-letter cards. There are more expensive wilds but I won't worry about them now. We each bought two 5¢ and two 7¢ wilds and gained one common-letter card each. The game ends when two of the wild piles are empty. Therefore we (I) ended the game after we each gained the same amount of victory points. It was rather easy to do this. I wonder if there should really be an odd number of wilds for the two-player game. I might ask the designer about this. Still, it was a fun game.

Midway through our game. I spelled the word "HASTENED" to score 7¢ and gain the "I" common letter for competing an 8-letter word!


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10. Board Game: Memoir '44 [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:117] [Average Rating:7.54 Unranked]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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MEMOIR '44
PLAY COUNT

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I've been looking for a partner to really get into Memoir '44. So far it hasn't grabbed anyone the way it's grabbed me. I decided to see if this is a game I can play with my father-in-law, and he's already read the rules without any prompting from me. Adding it to the list gives me the challenge to get my father-in-law into the game. Hopefully, this will be his cup of tea.


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11. Board Game: Friday [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:302]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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FIRST ALTERNATE

FRIDAY
PLAY COUNT

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Friday is my first alternate game. If one of the others just doesn't work out, then Friday is here to rescue me. It's a fun solitaire game that should already be getting ten plays a year.


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12. Board Game: Navajo Wars [Average Rating:7.96 Overall Rank:1108]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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SECOND ALTERNATE

NAVAJO WARS
PLAY COUNT

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Navajo Wars is my second alternate game. I am so fascinated by the history, concept, and theme of this game that I really look forward to getting it to the table. I do hope I can get 10 plays out of Navajo Wars this year.



d10-1 4/16/14
This play was part of MALAIS-E-CON 2014.

Actually laying the board out on the table and reading through the playbook, I was struck by two things. First, there is a good amount of levity in the playbook. I think it's a nice touch because this is a serious subject and a heavy rulebook. I'm glad that the designer has a sense of humor. And, I will always call it the "corn crib."

The second thing is the incredible artwork on the board. There are so many subtle things going on. At first, it just seems like a pretty map that uses stones instead of spaces (Which is a really nice touch, by the way). When I got to looking, I noticed how many gameplay elements are neatly tucked away within the artwork.

I've played two turns of this game using the tutorial. So far, I really enjoy what's happening. I don't have enough experience with the game to have any kind of real opinion. But from first impressions, I think this is going to be a pretty special game. I think it's apparent from the love that was given to the production. It's so well made and pretty that it's hard not to like it simply for the good quality components. I also don't think it's as hard as I have heard. Yes, there will probably be a pretty big learning curve. Heck, I've spent most of the day on two turns of the game.

The tutorial is really well done. I understand what I'm doing, which surprised me. I thought it would take most of the tutorial to figure out why am doing things and so on. I do think there are some things missing from the player aids, but I could be wrong. I'm sure that I can find what I need in the BGG files section, or I could just make something myself.

I really look forward to continuing the game. But I was simply too worn out to keep at it. So, I moved the game from my dining room table to the game table where I could keep things set up. I think it will go nicely to play another turn here or there until I work my way through the full tutorial. I will keep updating this play as I work my way through the game.

I know that Joel Toppen made a free PnP expansion that I am looking forward to printing out. But I need to wait and give myself some more time with the game. I can't put the horse before the cart, right? Right?

The board after turn 2 of the tutorial.


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13. Board Game: Milestones [Average Rating:6.60 Overall Rank:2102]
Ryan Mayes
United States
Gilbert
Arizona
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1st MILESTONE MET

January 14, 2014

Play 1 Game 5 Times


Pathfinder is the first game I played 5 times this year. It is a blast and I'm pretty sure it'll be the first game to reach 10 plays as well. This might seem like a weak milestone but I thought, "Hey, it's okay to have an easy one to get going." It feels good to get an accomplishment. It also feels good to purchase my first new game in over a year: The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43. Okay, okay. We all know that I added this easy milestone I met six days ago so I could justify purchasing The Hunters. I had money from Christmas, CoolStuff had a great price, and I didn't want to wait until June for the second printing. What's a gamer to do?

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2nd MILESTONE MET

January 30, 2014

Play 1 Game 10 Times


This was an exciting milestone to meet. I played Pathfinder 10 times and January isn't even over. What's even better is that I can't wait to keep playing this game. I decided to enter the challenge to play one game 100 times with Pathfinder, and I'm excited to take on a second challenge. I do say I am a little nervous that my other games might get pushed to the side because I'm busy playing Pathfinder, but we'll see. I purchased Navajo Wars after completing this milestone, and I think this might be my last game purchase for awhile, but we'll see what really happens.

yellowtrainyellowtrainyellowtrain

3rd MILESTONE MET

March 18, 2014

Play 3 Games 5 Times Each


I have to say that this milestone took me longer to reach than I thought it would. That makes me think the other milestones will be hard to reach as well. I am on a good pace to finish the challenge before the end of the year, and I have met three milestones in three months, so I can't really complain. For those playing at home, I am not going to buy a new game after this milestone.

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4th MILESTONE MET

March 18, 2014

Play 25 Games


Oops. I passed the 4th milestone and didn't even realize it. It's now April 2nd and I played my 25th game back on March 18th. I feel kind of dumb about missing this. Oh well, it feels really good to have another milestone complete. That means I'm over a quarter of the way done. Actually, I'm almost a third of the way done with this challenge because I played my 30th and 31st game today.

yellowtrainyellowtrainyellowtrain

5th MILESTONE MET

April 22, 2014

Play 3 Games 10 Times Each


Alright! I completed my 5th milestone. This feels like a big one because I have finished 3 games from the challenge. As far as the challenge goes, for the entire year, I am on the right pace. I am wondering what I am going to do because I am really into Pathfinder, The Hunters, and Flash Point. I want to keep playing them even though they are are already crossed off the list. Now, of course I am going to play them but I am afraid I will focus on these games and not the ones that need to be played. Not so terrible because that means games will get played, and isn't that the point of the challenge?

yellowtrainyellowtrainyellowtrain

6th MILESTONE MET

June 23, 2014

Play a game not on this list 10 times


It feels good to meet another milestone. It's been over two months since the 5th milestone, and I've hit a lull in the challenge. I played Cube Quest 10 times. To be fair, I played 6 games in a row with my friend's 6-year old daughter. She had a blast. It's really a fun game and I recommend it to everyone. It's easy, cheap, and full of silly fun. Plus, you can play a ton of games in a row!

Edit: So I have to admit that I forgot about my goal to only buy games after I've completed a milestone. I haven't really bought many games this year, so it kind of slipped my mind. I bought Mound Builders when I visited Victory Point Games, but that was more of a vacation souvenir than anything. So for this milestone, I bought myself Ogre: Pocket Edition.
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