GCL Beehive #28 Trees
Clay Blankenship
United States
Owens Cross Roads
AL
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GameChat League - Beehive Division

Welcome to this week's discussion list!

If you found us by accident, you are invited to join in the conversation. Friendly comments are always welcome. We ask only that visitors respect the GCL convention that only the group members should add new items to this GeekList.

For more information about us, see our group Wiki.

Our group is full for new membership at present, but spots will open up from time to time. Interested in joining a GCL Division, or maybe starting one up yourself? For more information about what GCL is all about, check out the GameChat League Wiki.

Hosting rotation:
We host in alphabetical order of our BGG usernames. Current week's host indicated by the asterisks.

ccmonter
Ed_the_Red
fowlerj
freddieyu
HilkMAN
JesterPoet
polyobsessive
sa266
saccenti
** snoweel **
UncleDragon (hosting next week)
x2fer
Xelforp
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1. Board Game: Familienbande [Average Rating:6.30 Overall Rank:3339]
Clay Blankenship
United States
Owens Cross Roads
AL
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One of my hobbies is genealogy. Although it's been a while since I had time to do a lot of research, I occasionally find time to do some online research. Do you have any family legends or mysterious stories, or just an interesting story about your ancestors?
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2. Board Game: Zooloretto: Christmas Tree [Average Rating:6.44 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.44 Unranked]
Clay Blankenship
United States
Owens Cross Roads
AL
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What games are you giving (or getting) this year for Christmas/holidays?
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3. Board Game: Careers [Average Rating:5.79 Overall Rank:4916]
Clay Blankenship
United States
Owens Cross Roads
AL
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What's the strangest job you have had?
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4. Board Game: Blokus [Average Rating:6.92 Overall Rank:519]
Sharon Khan
United Kingdom
Shefford
Bedfordshire
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I know it's etiquette to wait for the original poster to post his games list first, but someone has to start it off if he hasn't, so here goes!

I had an amazing weekend of games for my birthday weekend, with a long weekend of gaming running from Friday lunchtime to Monday lunchtime, with just a break for a curry out, and a carol service. Lots of fun! Highlights were Blokus (played online lots, but not in person), and a very amusing game of Farming (an old family game, but always lots of fun!). Also a rather embarrassing loss in Letters from Whitechapel, where I accidentally told the detectives searching for me which start point I'd started from, which made their jobs a lot easier, and they caught me a few turns later.

My children are off school this week, so I've already played lots of games with the boys while my daughter has been off on playdates with friends, and I suspect I'll play quite a few more before the week is out! That's on top of all the Christmas baking, and other Christmas activities, like making homemade Christmas cards. I love school holidays!

Games with other adults:

3 x The City
3 x Qwixx
2 x Agricola
2 x Alchemist (we played with so many wrong rules the first time we thought we'd better play again!)
2 x Blokus (we were having so much fun we played again - now on my wishlist)
2 x Guildhall (relatively new purchase I'm still exploring)

1 x Cir*kis (wins the prize for my least favourite game all weekend), Core Worlds, Dominion, Egizia, Escalation, Escape: the Curse of the Temple (where we died horribly as two players seemed unable to roll anything except for black dice for ages!), Factory Fun, Farming (I really shouldn't have bought 10 cows just before the Corn Bills), Fast Flowing Forest Fellers, Galaxy Trucker (with the new boards - we all died horribly again!), Goa, El Grande, Hansa Teutonica (they almost convinced me to like the game off this play - previously I've always hated it), Hare and Tortoise, King of Tokyo, Letters from Whitechapel, Lords of Waterdeep, Love Letter, Mausen, Midnight Party, Outpost, Palaces of Carrara, Peloponnes, Power Grid (UK map), Princes of Florence, Race for the Galaxy, Suburbia, Telepathy, Them and Us, Thurn und Taxis (really ought to play this more!), Tichu, Tzolkin, Aargh! Tect

Games with my children:

1 x Quit, Take it Easy, Wild World Lotto
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5. Board Game: Escape from the Hidden Castle [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:2031]
Hilko Drude
Germany
Goettingen
Lower Saxony
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11 x Love Letter
5 x Sleeping Queens
2 x Duck, Duck, Bruce
2 x Memory
1 x Giro Galoppo
1 x Midnight Party

Nothing much for me this week. Midnight Party was new to us, but the kids were in a bad mood, so it wasn't great. I'd give it another chance, but I'm not sure any of the others will. We will see whether they demand it. It's very dice-ish, which I don't really like, but the "take that" part was pleasant enough.
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6. Board Game: Crazy Mates Card Game [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Todd Walden
United States
Minneapolis
MN
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We decided that having our gaming weekend (MiniCon) only once a year meant waiting too long between marathon game sessions, so we scheduled MicroCon, a one day gaming event at my house, and it took place on Sunday. We had about 16 people over from 10am to 11pm playing various games.

So, that said, this is a good week of gaming for me.

Crazy Mates Card Game x 9

Saboteur x 3

Sentinels of the Multiverse x 3

Clue Jr.: Case of The Missing Pet x 2

Crazy Eights x 2

Go x 2

Merchants & Marauders x 2

The Resistance x 2

Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age x 2

7 Wonders x 1

Labyrinth x 1

Blokus x 1

Cartoona x 1

Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) x 1

Eat Poop You Cat x 1

Formula D x 1

Kingdom Builder x 1

Mille Bornes x 1

The Scrambled States of America x 1

Suburbia x 1

I think the best thing to come out of this week is that I finally got to play Suburbia. Wow! I really enjoyed that game. I'm going to have to pick it up when it is reprinted.

Overall, the con went well. It was a little more crowded than I would have liked, as my brother-in-law and his girlfriend (who aren't super social) also picked this weekend to visit. However, on the positive side, my son absolutely LOVES my girlfriend-in-law, so he played a lot with her, and that kept him distracted.

Great week!
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7. Board Game: Russian Railroads [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:67]
Scott Saccenti
United States
Colora
Maryland
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This past week featured a few "first plays." The Game-of-the-Week nod goes to one of them: Russian Railroads. My first impression is that this game has a chance to make the Real Rotation--to become a game that gets played twenty times instead of five over the coming year, let's say. But we'll see. There is a lot going on in it, and maybe there is a bit too much going on.

Of the games that have come out in the last 2-3 years, my pick for a shot at classic status is Tzolk'in. The other day at a game night, a friend who had played Village and Ra with me that evening asked me what I thought of them. I said that "Village is a game that I like a lot and enjoy playing. Ra is a classic for all time." Where will Tzolk'in and Russian Railroads eventually settle in that dichotomy?

Really, both of those spots are coveted. Village--the "lesser" of the two games--has gotten nearly a dozen plays by the Saccenti family this past year, after all.

Legacy is not a game that has any chance to make classic status. But I do enjoy it. For me, the fantastic theme covers up the rather slim game play. And I don't make an allowance like that too often!

Amerigo has gotten five plays so far, and I'm starting to feel like I can begin to give an opinion. The game takes too long (for me. Do I need to say "in my opinion"? Obviously this is all just my opinion...).

I remember I felt the same way about Castles of Burgundy on my first play. Only a subsequent play (with just two players, instead of four) saved that game for me. Indeed, Castles has become a marginal favorite of mine over nearly 20 plays now.

So I know better than to bail on Amerigo too early. My problem is that the length of the game (2 full hours with four players who all know their business--quite a bit longer if someone needs to be taught the game) makes it unlikely that it will get to the table. So that stinks. But there is a glimmer of hope. Amerigo lasts five rounds. The last round--in all four of my first plays--was, to either a greater or lesser an extent, somewhat anticlimactic. You know how a lot of great games end just when they start getting good, right when your "engine" or whatever just starts to get clicking, whatever? These games frustrate you, but in a good way. Many great games leave you wanting more.

Amerigo is not like that. On the final round, many of the things you can do are already totally maxed out. So on this fifth play, I convinced my fellow gamers to try the game with just four rounds instead of five. It worked great. The playing time was shortened by 20% of course. But better, actions became a bit more dear, and the final round never involved a moment of "oh I'll just take gold, there is nothing else to do." The game became, instead, another of those "I didn't really quite get to do all I hoped or expected." And that, In My Opinion, is a good thing. This tweak could save Amerigo for me. We will see.



3x -10- Dominion: All three plays with the new-to-me Dark Ages expansion
2x -8- Tzolk'in
1x |9| 7 Wonders
1x -6- Amerigo: Tried this with a variant. I played it four rounds instead of five. It gained much in my opinion, and lost only playing time. Sweet. This might be the thing that gets this up to a -7- rating for me.
1x -7- Balloon Cup
1x -7- Bruges
1x -6- Formula Motor Racing
1x -7- Guillotine
1x -6- Hanabi: My kids have been playing this at cons and game nights we attend. I have still only played once myself, and on that play I got the rules wrong!
1x -8- Ivanhoe
1x -5- La Boca
1x -7- Legacy: The Testament of Duke de Crecy: This was the three-hour teaching game that I mentioned in last week's belated list
1x -3- Qwirkle Cubes
1x |9| Ra
1x |9| Race for the Galaxy
1x -7- Russian Railroads
1x -6- Through the Desert:
1x -7- Thurn and Taxis
1x -8- Ticket to Ride
1x -7- Village

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8. Board Game: Mage Knight Board Game [Average Rating:8.13 Overall Rank:18]
Fernando Robert Yu
Philippines
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More details of my gaming week can be found here: Item for Geeklist "What Did You Play This Weekend? 12/16/2013"

The highlights of the week was my trip to Taiwan, which meant I got some solo gaming in, as well as that I got some playing time with my kids in the house! It's Xmas vacation already this week so I hope to get in more gaming time with them.

Mage Knight Board Game x 2
Friday x 2
Cheat x 2 (NEW)
Lost Cities x 1
Kingdom Builder x 1
Roll Through the Ages: The Late Bronze Age x 1
Seasons x 1
Innovation x 1
Guildhall + Guildhall: Job Faire x 1
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9. Board Game: Five Crowns [Average Rating:5.88 Overall Rank:4254]
Gudjon Torfi Sigurdsson
Iceland
Isafjordur
Isafjardarbaer
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A bit more action last week than the week before. Looking forward to the holidays!


Game Qty
Five Crowns 3
Spot it! 3
Dominion 1
Las Vegas 1
The Little Orchard 1


Played a few games with friends and family and one with the kid. And I've got the games from my Secret Santa in the house! Will be fun to see what's in those packages...
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