Nikki and Billy's Plays, 2014 Challenge: Play 10 games 10 times each
Nikki Ebright
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The significant other and I are participating in the 2014 Challenge to play 10 games of our choosing 10 times over the course of 2014. We'll be using this geeklist to record our plays, how it went, and our thoughts on the games. Note: I've reordered the list so the most recent play is on top, which should make it easier to follow along.

You can track our summary in the challenge geeklist at Item for Geeklist "2014 Challenge: Play 10 Games 10 Times Each"

And for reference, here are the 10 games we chose:

Catan: Cities & Knights - Completed Dec 8, 2014

Feb 1, Feb 10, Feb 17, Mar 1, Oct 1, Oct 3, Oct 8, Oct 16, Nov 19 (BGGCon), Dec 8
- I generally play base Catan and Billy really likes Cities and Knights, so it's an opportunity for me to get more plays in and see some of the nuances that he likes.

Copycat - Completed Oct 27, 2014
Mar 7, Apr 6 (no summary), Apr 13 (no summary), April 17, April 26, May 11, June 28 (no summary), Oct 23, Oct 26, Oct 27

- Copycat is another recent acquisition, and another one we'd like to know better. Here's our chance.

Dominion: Seaside - Completed Oct 16, 2014
(+ bonus game)
Jan 21 (x2), June 28 (no summary) Sept 25, Sept 28, Oct 1, Oct 2, Oct 12 (x2), Oct 16 (x2)
- I have a bunch of Dominions, but tend to stick with base plus Prosperity a lot. It's time to dig into the others! And we got this one for the holidays from family, so definitely looking forward to getting in 10 plays on this one.

Dominion: Intrigue - Completed Oct 27, 2014

April 17, Oct 2, Oct 3, Oct 8, Oct 21, Oct 22 (x2), Oct 26 (x2), Oct 27
- Intrigue has been sitting on the shelf, getting no love, so I want to see how this one differs from the others.

Hegemonic - Completed Dec 25, 2014

Jan 25, Feb 1, Feb 24, June 28, Oct 8, Oct 27, Nov 22 (BGGCon), Nov 28, Dec 6, Dec 25
- Billy picked up Hegemonic at BGGCon and has been itching to play it, so we put it on the list kind of blind, because neither of us has played it yet. This is probably our most risky item on the list.

Kingsburg - Completed Dec 22, 2014

Feb 5, June 27 (no recap), Sept 27, Oct 21, Nov 9, Nov 24, Nov 25, Nov 27, Dec 5, Dec 22
- I came to really look forward to playing Kingsburg a few years ago with a friend who owns it. Now we own it, and want to see if it has 10x replayability.

Le Havre - Completed Dec 28, 2014

Aug 16, Aug 19, Aug 24, Oct 20, Dec 5, Dec 9, Dec 20, Dec 25 (x2), Dec 28
- Le Havre is another holiday gift from Billy's family and he and I have been trying to find time to play it. Now we will make time!

Mice and Mystics - Completed Nov 28, 2014

Jan 26, Feb 9, Feb 16, May 25, June 1, June 8, Nov 3 (x2), Nov 28 (x2)
- Some friends of ours that live within walking distance (woo hoo) own this game and have agreed to play it 10 times with us this year. If there aren't enough scenarios, we will find new ones online, borrow from other games (like Castle Ravenloft) or replay levels as different characters. This will scratch a little RPG itch too.

RoboRally - Completed Oct 4, 2014

Feb 17, Mar 9, Apr 7, Apr 19, May 23, Sept 27, Sept 28, Oct 1, Oct 2, Oct 4
- Another holiday gift to the pair of us. Every time I have played it in the past, I get very frustrated and generally say I don't like this game. So this one is a personal challenge to find out if it's just a learning curve or if I just don't like playing it.

Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar - Completed Dec 28, 2014

April 7, April 19, Oct 12, Nov 9, Nov 20 (BGGCon), Dec 22, Dec 23, Dec 25, Dec 26, Dec 28
- I pimped my Tzolk'in out with awesome painting (with help from a minis painting friend) and now I want to see how much I like the game.

Edit 4/18/14: 21 plays out of 100. We are 1/5 of the way there!

Edit 10/3/14: I just did an audit and found a few plays that I had logged on the geek and not put on the geeklist (and vice versa). We should be statistically all caught up now, so we're at 48 plays out of 100. We should be playing at least 2 tonight, so we'll be 50% of the way done by end of today!

Edit 10/10/14: Finished 1 game last weekend! 54/100 complete overall.

Edit 10/20/14: Finished our 2nd game last week, and as of tonight we're at 60%!

Edit 10/28/14: As of last night, we're at 71%!

Edit 12/7/14: Only 13 plays left to go!

Edit 12/28/14: We did it!

The last few weeks have seen some fast and furious playing, but we made it to 100, whew! We're about to head off to Disneyworld and Universal Studios, so I'll update the geeklist in January when we get back. Happy New Year, all!


W W W W W W W W W W W W W W W W W W E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E

Alternate:
Space Alert

Feb 1
- One of my favorite games, but we haven't played it together yet. Nervous that our couple pairing and my favorite game won't go well together?
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1. Board Game: Catan: Cities & Knights [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #1: Saturday February 1, 2014

I have played a lot of Settlers of Catan, just the vanilla no frills type, while Billy prefers to play Cities and Knights when he plays Catan, so I've been intrigued to find out what he likes about it better.

He explained the new parts (walls, pirates, etc) to me and Jason, who had not played C&K before (and it had been a while for me). I went into the game doubtful about the value of city walls.

What I discovered is that with a city at the beginning of the game, you get cards a lot more quickly than you can spend them, and when the robber hit early on, I started to see the value of the walls. I was getting a lot of brick, so before too long, I actually built all 3 of my walls.

I was last in placing, and I think I got a pair of pretty decent spots. I also got the card that allowed me to swap a pair of numbers, so I replaced a 3 I was on with a 5, and that came up more often than the 3 did.

I'm not sure how much strategy I employed. I kept forgetting that I could trade for the extra neeto cards, and spent my time working on building more stuff instead. I worked to get to a 3:1 port about 1/3 of the way through the game, and that was useful, especially when the other two quit trading with me. I got longest road first; Billy got a cathedral first, so I decided I wanted one of those too. Mostly, though, I was spending the cloth and coins, etc as quickly as I could so they couldn't get stolen or lost to the robber, so I was working on flipping the boards as quickly as I could.

I went into the game with one goal and that was to get the green pages flipped to the ability where you get a resource when you otherwise don't. I did get to that ability, but by then I think I was diversified enough that I never actually used the ability.

Final score:
Nikki - 13
Billy - 8
Jason - 6

Analysis: Not sure if I got lucky with placement vs die rolls or if I subconsciously am good at the game.

Verdict: I liked it and I can see how it adds something more to the standard Settlers of Catan game. I'm looking forward to playing it again.
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2. Board Game: Catan: Cities & Knights – 5-6 Player Extension [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #2: Monday February 10, 2014

I did terribly. More details to follow.

I can't find my notes, so I'll give a recap from memory.

We arranged to play with some friends (because you can't do 2 player, so we're always looking for an opportunity to do 3+). It snowballed and we had 6 players. Most of the folks were familiar with Catan in general, but it was still kind of a learning game for the majority of the players.

After our initial placements, the player to my right was first (so I was second). He rolled a 7, and we had not instituted any house rules, so he put the robber on one of my city tiles. The only city tile that was giving me the special cards (commodity cards), as it turns out. The robber didn't move for at least 4 rounds (which with 6 players was over 24 turns) so the two of us that were impacted by the robber placement found ourselves at a huge disadvantage early in the game. I'm not sure that I ever really recovered, and so it was a really frustrating game for quite a while. I reverted to my standard Settlers strategy which is to try to build more settlements, so I eventually got a road and another settlement and got to a 3:1 port, so that helped some. Chris, the other robber-impacted player managed to buy more knights than others, so every time the pirates came, she got the Savior of Catan (or whatever it's called) and the bonus VP.

I employed some strategy, trading for the commodity cards and getting the flips as much as I could, even getting a cathedral at one point (but it got stolen away), and I used some of the development cards (wrong word there too) to get a bunch of resources from time to time, but overall I was behind and couldn't quite figure out how to catch up.

In the end, there were 4 people vying for the win and two of us, well, not. I got to wondering if I could play kingmaker anywhere, heh. I've mislaid the notes, and our 4 1/2 hour game ended around midnight, so we're not even sure who won.

Final scores (or something close to the actual final scores):
Billy - 13 ("after lagging most of the game", per Shawn)
Henning - 12 (or 13, per Billy)
Shawn - 12
Chris - 10 or 11
Tom - 7
Nikki - 6

Analysis: I need to pay a lot more attention to where I place my city in relationship to the commodities so that if I get blocked on one side, I still have something coming in. Also, I think I need to focus on getting cities more and not settlements as much.

Verdict: I still think I could like this game more, especially once I figure out some strategies. Also, I don't like 6 player; I think it's too unwieldy and takes too long. I have put in a request that we stick to 3, 4, or 5 player for now.
 
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3. Board Game: Catan: Cities & Knights [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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Play #3: Monday February 17, 2014

After the trouncing in the 5/6 player game, I was itching to try again, but with a smaller group. We got that chance last night when a pair of friends came over for a few games, and we started with this one.

I was determined to get a better placement for my city, one that involved more of the commodities, so I started scouting those first thing. I found a lovely spot that gave me commodities on all 3 sides (even though one was a 3) but I was second, so I knew that spot would be gone by the time it got back to me to place my city. So I put my settlement there and figured I'd be able to upgrade it to a city (since I was going to work on getting more cities and less on settlements), and it was a good choice.

I tried to work on getting the most knights out for the the barbarians attack, but Chris always had more. I got to the 2:1 commodity ability first (of any of the abilities) and was able to put that to good use through a lot of the game.

My two placements weren't very near each other, so I was struggling to find a good way to get longest road; I never did. Chris had placed her locations near enough to each other and without other players in the way that she was able to get it and hold it.

I did much better with the commodities this game and managed to flip all of my board pieces a few times, and even got the cathedral for one of them (and no one went further than me to steal it). I had the 2:1 trading guy for a while and I had stolen a VP card from Chris, so I was doing well in points, but she managed to get there before me. Billy wasn't too far behind, but Shawn got the worst of things in this game. I'm wondering if it's like that in every game; is there always one (or more) player(s) who gets stomped?

Final score:
Chris - 13
Nikki - 12 (I'm pretty sure)
Billy - 10?
Shawn - 6?

Analysis: Still not sure if there's enough strategy in the game to have the ability to control your fate. Glad I focused on the commodities though. I think that is essential for having a chance in this game.

Verdict: Still enjoying it. Still not sure if it'll be something that I want to play a lot or if it will recede to the background again after the 10x10 challenge.
 
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4. Board Game: Catan: Cities & Knights [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.47 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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Play #4: Saturday March 1, 2014

Another 4 player game, so it was tight on the board and resources seemed clumped again (like all 3 brick were together).

I was first, so I made sure to take a good spot for my settlement that I would upgrade to a city, and I found a spot that had all 3 of the commodity opportunities. I upgraded it to a city not too terribly far in the game, but for some reason I really struggled to get out to other numbers. I ended up surrounding my numbers, but 2/3 of the way into the game, that was fine as I had gotten the green pages flipped to the resource ability. Not being diversified made that a good weapon, and I was able to get a nubmer of things that were useful. And when a number I had did roll, I got 2+ cards each time. So that worked out.

I was on a 3 (for wood) and had a 9 next to it, and Tom played the card where you can swap numbers, so he took the 9 and gave me a 3, so I was on double 3's, which worked out as I got the Alchemist twice after that and I chose 3, giving me 6 cards each time.

Again, we had a game where it seemed like one person was struggling to get points and two vying for the top. It didn't seem like I was really in the running, but I kept working at it. I still don't have a clear endgame strategy on how to get to 13 without it just kind of happening, so that's probably why I'm not getting there.

In the last round, I was one card away from getting the yellow metropolis (which was unclaimed), but I couldn't get the right trade to make it happen. Billy was able to build a settlement on his turn (he was after me), and he had stolen longest road from Chris a few turns earlier, which put him at 13. Tom, after Billy, would have gotten the yellow metropolis on his turn, and Chris would have gotten longest road back on hers, so there was a lot going on near the end. We were almost at the pirate attack, and I had finally gotten the most knights on the board as well, so that's 1 point I almost had too. So maybe it was closer than it seemed.

Final scores:
Billy - 13 with 1 metropolis, 4 cities, 1 settlement and longest road
Nikki - 10 with 4 cities, 1 settlement, and a 1 VP card (Knights: 9 points worth of active knights and 1 point of inactive)
Chris - 9 with 2 cities, 1 metropolis, 2 settlements, and 1 VP card (Knights: 9 points active, 0 inactive)
Tom - 8 with 3 cities, the Merchant, and the 1st (and only) Defender of Catan (all other sacking of the city events resulted in ties)

Analysis: I need to come up with an end game strategy. I'm feeling good about my ability to get well positioned in the beginning, but I'm not sure what to do from there.

Verdict: 4 players, 2.5 hours. I like the addition of the knights and all the fun things that happen there, but it seems too long to me. I keep thinking/hoping it'll go faster as we know the game better.
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5. Board Game: Copycat [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1163]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #1: Friday March 7, 2014

We played with our friends Paul and Nancy, who were both new to the game. They also had not played Agricola and I'm not sure about Dominion, so those references were lost on them, but they picked up the game just fine anyway.

I've played Copycat a number of times before, but it's long enough between plays that I forget what goes well with what, and I get nuggets of strategies but never quite figure out a best overall strategy.

I went with the lean deck strategy, working on shredding the small potatoes, and by the end, I only had 3 of my original cards (2 vp and 1 money). I'm not sure if it helped or not though. I wonder if getting ways to draw more cards and double the money is a better strategy.

I also go back and forth on getting better money or vp cards. This game, I kept using my time and energy early on to get better cards and didn't focus on scoring a lot of vp. By mid game, I had gotten a 6 vp card, and used one of the doubling offices to get 12 out of it, plus the rest that I had accumulated, which was about 18 vp in one turn. If I could do that every other turn, that would work, but it didn't happen. I'd often use the doubling space to get more meeples, use meeples to draw more cards, and the 6 vp card wasn't coming up often enough.

Paul had gotten a money doubler, and if that had come up at the end with the Degrees, that could have been pretty awesome. Either way, whatever he did seemed to work. Nancy was ahead through the early game, getting vp chips and using the offices often, but we all caught up in the mid-game, and in the end, Paul took the lead. I ended the game by buying the last degree in the final turn of the #4 cards, so we didn't get to the office card in the 5th row.

Final scores:
Paul - 72
Billy - 63
Nikki - 60
Nancy - 52

Analysis: I'm not certain if the thin deck strategy is a sure winner (and I'm not playing it right) or if there's something else. It seems like getting the money doubler helps a lot, but I'm not sure if that's a key to victory either.

Verdict: I hope we can play it a number of times in a row so I can see what seems to work consistently and what works sometimes and not others.
 
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6. Board Game: Copycat [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1163]
Nikki Ebright
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Thursday April 17, 2014

For the second game of the night we decided on Copycat. It was about 8:00 pm when we started I think, hmm, maybe a little later. Both Karen and Henning were new to the game.

From previous plays I had tried the shred/thin deck strategy, and that didn't seem to work (although it could be because I didn't have the right cards). Years ago (heh), playing Stone Age I got burned by not getting more meeples, so since then I often go for the more meeples strategy, so I've been trying that with Copycat as well.

Last night, I got schooled on that one too.

Each round, Karen was getting some VP while the rest of us fought over the money spaces and what to buy. Early on she bought a 3 coin card, which then allowed her to buy two of the 3 VP cards, and she also picked up a VP chit doubler. She was able to ignore money and purchasing by about halfway through the game.

Those 4 cards and her starting 10 were the cards she had at the end. She consistently took the VP and card doubling offices (to get 6 VP from her 3 VP card, for example). She never got a single extra worker the entire game.

I worked on getting lots of extra meeples and had a Small PR Campaign and Large PR Campaign, which was funny when they both were in my hand because I usually double PR Campaigns when I get them, and there was no (well little) point when I had them both! I got the money doubler, which allowed me to get something good about 2/3 (maybe 3/4) the way though (6 VP card I think), and I think I used the money doubler on a Doctorate degree too. I almost caught up to Karen 2 rounds before the end with a good scoring round (20+ maybe? Doubled the good VP card plus a lot of other VPs), but my deck was so thick that getting another good round like that didn't happen.

Billy and Henning both found ways to draw lots of cards (spend $ for card draws and +3 cards) and spent the last few rounds pretty much cycling their whole decks.

At the end, Billy ended up buying one Doctorate one round and then the last one the next (final) round, unexpectedly, as he was 3rd in turn order - Karen (1st in turn order) continued to focus on VP accumulation, and Henning (2nd in turn order) spent all his coin to draw extra cards.

Karen had a substantial lead on us all from about 1/3 of the game to the last turn or two. Billy and I worked on catching up in the last few rounds; I didn't quite get what I needed but the 2nd Doctorate worked in Billy's favor.

End scores:
Billy: 80
Karen: 74
Nikki: 59
Henning: 38

Analysis: I never would have thought that such a thin deck, but virtue of not buying a lot, would pay off, but Karen really made effective use of it. I don't think I could be that patient, but maybe I could modify that idea with shredding money in the first part to buy VP cards and just cycling VP cards all game. Then again, I'd be incredibly tempted to buy a few big money so I could buy big VP to add to my cycling. So many choices!

Verdict: I am liking the game more and more. The replayability (mainly because I haven't quite cracked how to win consistently) is definitely there for me. I also like that there appears to be multiple paths to victory, and that's generally a positive check from me for any game.
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7. Board Game: Copycat [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1163]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #4: Saturday April 26, 2014

Billy and I played with our friends Bob and Elle, both of whom were new to the game.

I focused on getting VP each round and was ahead most of the game. Near the end (maybe the last round), Billy had a round of 32 points (or so) - he doubled a 10 and a 6 for sure.

Final scores:
Billy - 84
Nikki - 83
Elle - 71
Bob - 62

Analysis: I forgot to take notes on what strategy I used. I think I gave up on the thin deck idea and went for focusing on buying VP and a few bigger money cards. I may have gotten a Sharpen the Elbows, which I've found really useful, especially for such a cheap card.

Verdict: I really enjoy the game and look forward to playing it. I think it has replayability still, especially as I still haven't found a way to crush my enemies.
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8. Board Game: Copycat [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:1163]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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Play #5: Sunday May 11, 2014

Billy and I were at a friend's house for Mother's Day, and I really wanted to play a game, so he and I set up Copycat and tried out the 2 player version. It was weird not having the extra offices, and ditching the first 3 cards kept the deck going pretty quickly.

Billy went with an aggressive thin deck strategy while I worked on getting VP every round, buying a few VP cards, and being able to cycle through my deck every round, especially at the end.

At the end, Billy only had 9 cards in his deck - 3 level 1's, 2 level 2's, and 3 level 3's (and one original card maybe?). I had stayed ahead for most of the game, but he caught up in I think the 3rd to last round, and it was neck and neck from there to the end.

I scored 33 (or more) points in the last round but he scored 40 in the last round. I had a Largest Newspaper that I was able to double in the last round, but my Nationwide TV (6 VP) didn't come up on the last round.

Final scores:
Billy - 127
Nikki - 113

Analysis: I still really debate about the thin deck strategy. Obviously Billy was able to implement it well this time, but I think my path to victory is still a mixture of getting rid of cards (which I didn't do much of this time) and getting VP all the time.

Verdict: Still working on that One Way to Win strategy. It might not exist.
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9. Board Game: Dominion: Intrigue [Average Rating:7.76 Overall Rank:57] [Average Rating:7.76 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Thursday April 17, 2014

Some friends came over for a few games, and we managed to get two of our 10 x 10 games on the table.

First was Intrigue, which we picked because it had (most of the) resource cards in it (somehow the coppers were missing).

We did a random sort: for the 3's we had Swindler, Shanty Town, and Great Hall; 4's were Scout and Ironworks; and 5's were Trading Post, Torturer, Minion, Tribute and Duke. We had a different attack card but Billy vetoed it so we replaced it with a "lighter" attack card (maybe Torturer).

Early on I picked up a Torturer and Karen got a Swindler. She used her Swindler to great effect, with a lot of us losing Coppers, to be replaced by Curses. Later on I picked up a Swindler as well, but I don't think I was as effective as she was.

I tried to work on a Duke/Duchy strategy, but only got one Duke and about 4 Duchies. I think I waited too long.

Near the end I did a Swindler and gave a Duke to Karen. Then she picked up a few Duchies, heh.

End scores:
Karen: 36 (with 1 Duke and 6 Duchies)
Henning: 30
Nikki: 23
Billy: 21

Analysis: This set seems to be more about attacking than the other sets. I like that there's more interaction between players, but one of the things I like about Dominion is the kind of multi-player solitaire that happens.

Verdict: I think I like the set overall. I'll have to reframe my brain to see this as a different game than base Dominion and come up with different strategies. Karen did a great job of both attacking/slowing us down while collecting VP, so maybe that kind of blended strategy is something to try.
 
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10. Board Game: Dominion: Seaside [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #1: Tuesday January 21, 2014, evening.

We got this for the holidays from Billy's family and have been itching to play it since. Tonight we got our first play in, and we decided to do the recommended setups to begin.

First play, we did the Seaside only "High Seas" setup, which includes the Bazaar, Caravan, Embargo, Explorer, Haven, Island, Lookout, Pirate Ship, Smugglers, and Wharf (not the Klingon).

I've played with the duration cards before, and this setup gave us two out of the three pieces of cardboard (Island and Pirate Ship), so we got to play with all the metal pieces too.

I seemed to struggle to get rolling while Billy was doing a great job of thinning his deck (one of my favorite things to do) using the Lookout (top 3 cards of your deck; discard one, trash one, and one of top of your deck). In the end he had only 4 action cards in his deck - a Caravan, a Wharf, and two Bazaars. He had managed to put his Lookout on the Island after thinning out all but one of his coppers. In the end, he had the 4 action cards, two golds, a silver, and a copper in his hand, along with two provinces and two Estates, and he had bought one of those Provinces that turn.

I slowed him down slightly by Embargo-ing the Islands after he Embargo'ed the Golds, but it wasn't enough. I was thick with cards: two golds, two silvers, all 7 coppers, three Provinces, one Duchy, two Islands, three Estates, plus 8 action cards. I had 4 of those cards on the Island, but my deck just wasn't helping out.

Final score:
Billy - 40
Nikki - 28

Analysis: I don't tend to go with the attack route much, so I avoided Embargo for most of the game and never got around to buying a Pirate Ship. I tried to get good use out of the duration cards, but I didn't quite get a good combo going.

Verdict: I am looking forward to playing more and seeing if I can combo together a good set with the duration cards.
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11. Board Game: Dominion: Seaside [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.06 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #2: Tuesday January 21, 2014, evening.

We enjoyed our first play and still had time before having to get ready for bed so we moved on to scenario #2. This one is called "Buried Treasure" and has Ambassador, Cutpurse, Fishing Village, Lighthouse, Outpost, Pearl Diver, Tactician, Treasure Map, Warehouse, and Wharf (still not a Klingon).

I've played with Treasure Map before and got it paired up early, so I decided to go for that angle. My first draw was 4 copper, 1 Estate, so I picked up my first piece. Second I bought a Warehouse, because it would let me draw 3 cards (and discard 3), which I figured would give me a good shot at getting the two maps together (once I had a second one). Third turn I think I bought the second Treasure Map. Next turn, I drew the Warehouse and I had two cards in my draw pile, and I knew one was a Treasure Map. I'd have to shuffle in the Treasure Map I had bought last turn and hope it would be on top (odds were good, I still had a small deck), but I decided to not play the Warehouse, leaving a better possibility with drawing for next turn the two on top (one being the Treasure Map) plus 3 more, hoping I'd get them together. Luck was with me, and I got 4 golds. That helped me for the game. Otherwise, Billy was all over this one too.

He had, at the end, 3 duration cards (seemed like more), 4 Warehouses, and a Cutpurse, which was really being a pain in the neck. I finally got an Ambassador to try to get rid of my coppers, although I never got to use it.

I was buying up Provinces when I could, and in the end had 5 gold and the 7 coppers to do it with. I only had one duration card (the Tactician), two Pearl Divers, and a Warehouse, but I still only managed to get 4 Provinces. In one move, Billy bought two Provinces by using the Tactician, and so in the end we both had 4 Provinces and 3 Estates.

Result:
Nikki and Billy - 27 points each (he started and bought the last Province, so I had fewer turns and won via the tiebreaker)

Analysis: I need to use the duration cards more. I should have easily had this game and he was able to crank it up and come back. He was very effective with his use of the Duration cards. Billy says it was probably a mistake on my part to get the 5th gold and should have spent that buy on more infrastructure.

Verdict: We both are looking forward to playing it again, and I am enjoying the potential of the duration cards. He is looking forward to more practice with the duration cards, and so am I.
 
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12. Board Game: Hegemonic [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:2326]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #1: Saturday January 25, 2014

Our first play of Hegemonic. We'd read through the rules in December, but this was our first actual play of the game. We played with our friend Pyro (who has been playing strategy games for eons and is a good competitor) and John (who also knows gaming pretty well). It was a learning game for us all as none of us had played it.

Billy can describe the game aspects probably a bit better. My favorite thing so far is the player boards. They're similar to Eclipse (yes?) where you have the pieces on your board and as you move them off, it impacts your income and the strength of various things. I worked on getting my income up, but the change in cost for ambassadors and strength of fleets were some nuances that I think I'll work on more in the future.

We spent a lot of time trying to fully understand what the cards do, and Pyro made better use of attacking and taking over than the rest of us did. We mainly did a lot of the #2 card, building and taking money. I kept running out of money quickly, so I need to figure out how to pace things better next time. Then again, I think I came in second, so I was getting somewhere.

Final score:
Pyro - 112
Nikki - 95
Billy - 92
John - 79

Analysis: For me, I need to get more comfortable with attacking other players (something I hesitate to do in most games). I think it has some clever mechanics and I'm interested in getting more able to utilize more strategy as I get to know the game better.

Verdict: I'm curious to see how much depth and replayability it has once we are more fluent in the game. I'm glad it's on our list because it has the potential to sit on the shelf, unplayed for quite a while again otherwise.
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13. Board Game: Hegemonic [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:2326]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #2: Saturday February 1, 2014

This was our second play of Hegemonic, both for the challenge as well as overall. We played at one of our area's Saturday gaming get-togethers (we're lucky to live in an area with loads of gaming at folks houses), playing with friends Dan and Travis. Dan and Billy were my neighbors and Travis was across from me.

I wanted to make sure to focus more on the ability that allows you to take over other people's units already on the board, so I worked on that as well as focusing on the political alliances with other races. I didn't get many alliances, but I did watch for them.

Some game recap:

Billy was the first Arbiter and with his first tile placement, placed in the center. I decided to work on competing for the center and placed in the middle as well.

At one point early-ish on I tried the 2-Politics card to take over something (I forget what exactly), but Billy, my conniving neighbor, helped the defender and I lost. Battle in general is not my forte, so I'm trying to get better at trying.

I wanted to focus on Politics, but I ended up building level 1, 2, and 3 Martial techs (Phased Teleport, Hyper Cannon, and Brane Manipulation), so I worked on finding ways to use Martial instead.

We discovered part way though that we had a question: are agents and fleets required for Political and Martial attacks? (We decided that the rules were vague but seemed to be trying to say that yes, they were, so we played that way, and it was confirmed afterward when Dan found a FAQ.)

I remember at one point Dan was far ahead in the points and so he became a target for many attacks (I tried a few). Travis at one point made a successful Subvert attack using Industrial. Travis was slowly building an engine and I was pretty sure he and Dan were going to be vying for top position.

I noticed that cards have a big impact on the result, especially if the conflict is close, and made a big difference in most of my (losing) attempts.

There was a lot more Subverting this game, and it was interesting later in the game where Dan was Arbiter (1st player) and would choose to have himself go last so he could respond to what others had done. I thought that was a smart move.

I have notes that Travis did a 9 Industrial vs Billy's 12 Military (Billy won) and I did a 9 Industrial vs 7 Political (purple alliance - I won that time).

Our end of game came when we had 2 tiles left over total. In the last turn Billy chose action #1 Assault and killed the 2 Industrial units that I had built in his sector, giving him back sole ownership in his sector. I had kicked Travis out of mine not too much earlier, so Billy and I were both going for the bonus points there.

Early on I kept getting my butt kicked in Politics though and at one point had all of my pieces back on my starting board. By the end of the game, I had uncovered a roughly even 2/3 distribution of my board. Billy had put out all of his Military, all but 3 of his Politics, and about half of his Industry. Travis had mainly Industry and Politics out on the board at the end and very little Military, while Dan had all but one of his Military out, about half of his Politics, and only a few of his Industry.

Billy said after the game that he finds it interesting how each type - political, military, industry - has a different way of counting their strength. I think that's been a key point that I've been missing; I want all of the types to be measured the same, and that's been causing me to spend a lot of time figuring out what I actually have for offense and defense.

Final score:
Dan - 100
Billy - 99
Travis - 96
Nikki - 80

Analysis: More battle practice! Also, pay attention to having a good balance of high-numbered cards for all 3 areas in order to win battles.

Verdict: I'm getting more comfortable with the system, and we're almost to the point where we know all the rules. I swear there should be a job for someone to review rules and make sure they are understandable, clear, and accurate. We keep finding information in random places (like cards coming back to you at the end of the round not being listed with end of round procedure but with combat). Once we know all the rules by heart, it won't matter where they're listed, but rule books should be more intuitive.
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14. Board Game: Hegemonic [Average Rating:6.91 Overall Rank:2326]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #3: Saturday February 24, 2014

Our first 3 player game. I was in the middle with Shawn to my left and Billy to my right, and we used the recommended setup, so Shawn and Billy didn't touch and would have to go across the middle to interfere with each other.

Billy was primarily focusing on military. He also did industry, but mainly for income. He also went for the middle early, but he had primary control of the middle for most of the game.

I ended up focusing on political, mainly because of the tiles that were available, and I liked how that went for me.

Shawn tried to industrial, but Billy says that's a tricky one to do. He had a lot of good industrial power, but it wasn't positioned to use it.

They were ahead of me most of the game, although I tried to do an early attack against Billy. It was successful, but as Billy says, it was like to different (my political attacked his burgeoning military), and he had the military infrastructure to take it back the next turn. If I had been able to hold it or if I had spent those resources elsewhere, I may have been closer to a win. It's hard to say.

Overall I think we all kept up pretty well with each other. I worked on being more adept at taking over in the second half of the game, and destroying when it benefited me (vs taking over). I think I got control of the center away from Billy at the end, but Shawn got more than me in the center and got second place in the game.

Final score:
Billy - 86
Shawn - 80
Nikki - 76

Analysis: I used the tiles available more than the cards available for determining the power direction I wanted to go. I think it worked well to not be competing for the same type of power with my direct neighbors, but having a good second type could be useful. I did diversify to two political factions, so that was useful.

Verdict: I'm liking the game better as I get more strategy and I think I will enjoy all 10 plays.
 
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15. Board Game: Kingsburg [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:266]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #1: Wednesday February 5, 2014

I had played this as a two player a number of times before with a friend of mine, and I've been itching to play it some more.

There's one strategy that involves building the bottom row, because if you get to the Embassy (the last building), you get an extra vp at the end of each productive season, and there are 3 of those each year, so it's a "cheap" way to get vp for nothing more than building the building. As long as you don't lose it to the Barbarians or something.

I went with that strategy, grabbing the 4th row Palisade (+1 in battle) along the way for protection. I also like to get the Inn (first building on the second row) for the die token, because in the 5th row, the Town Hall (3rd building) lets you turn those in for a vp every season, so as long as I'm not planning on keeping the Summer one, it's another free vp.

Billy went with the second row, going for the Merchant's Guild, which gives you a free gold every productive season, and the buildings along the way give you an extra die in the productive seasons and the ability to influence advisers above or below.

We beat off the invaders all but the second year, and he lost a building I believe. There was something that happened that would have put him with 16 more points than he had, we calculated.

In the end, the bonus vp strategy worked again and I won. Apparently I didn't write down the score, so I'll update this when I get it from Billy (he takes pictures of the games).

Final score:
Nikki - won
Billy - didn't win


Analysis: We think the game might be broken with the bottom row strategy always coming up top, but I wonder if there aren't other ways, other combined items that could provide a vp engine instead.

I'm curious about something like a top row strategy (24 vp from buildings) plus going for the +1 in battle spots (mostly the 3rd row, and that would be another 13 vp) and then focus on getting vp from the advisers on the board. For comparison, the bottom row only provides 7 vp for the buildings.

Verdict: I still enjoy this game. This and Alea Iacta Est are both dice rolling games, but I feel that I have enough control over my fate in both of them to look forward to the dice rolling.

Note: Someone posted an analysis of the game in terms of strategies on the geek (Two-part posting on Kingsburg strategy, including a comparison of strategies from this forum) and I think I need to take a look at that to see if there are other strategies I haven't noticed. I really want to see if there are other winning paths aside from the bottom row.
 
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16. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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Play #1: Sunday January 26, 2014 "3 Mice Enter, 1 Mouse Leaves"

We had played the first scenario with our friends Bob and Maggie (who own the game; we don't) a month or so ago, and it's a cute RPG style game, with characters (that have been turned into mice due to a wizard's actions) and items and such. We're playing the campaign, and so had noted what items the characters had from the previous play and kept things the same going forward. This time we baggied each character and their things separately to make it easier for next time. We also made an effort to play different characters than we had played last time.

We played scenario #2, Lily's Tail. We had Nez (Bob), Maginos (Maggie), Tilda (me), and Lily (Billy). For the scenario we needed a tinkerer or else we'd have to go to the kitchen (the bonus level), and since we had Nez, we were good to go. From the beginning we pretty much decided not to do the bonus level; we did it the first time, and it was useful, but we met the cat and I think none of us were interested in that again anytime soon, lol.

Billy read the scenario this time, and I got a chuckle out of the voices he was doing, especially Colin with his voice-cracking teenager boy version.

Bob, Maggie and I handily took care of the first tile with the help of the crow. I've been reading and watching Game of Thrones and couldn't help thinking of the Black Watch and "You know nothing, Jon Snow". We also searched and found something (I forgot what, maybe a dagger?).Billy/Lily fended off the cockroaches in her area without much incident as well.

Second tile went reasonably well. I/Tilda had a hammer that gave me +1 for every injured mouse in my tile, so I kept trying to get people to join me next to the rats we were fending off so they'd get injured and I could hit harder. I also searched and found the treachery card "They know we're here", also known as "What do you mean we don't ring every bell we find?" We didn't have any new encounters pop up, so it didn't come into play.

The third tile was more difficult. We ran into some nasty creature, Skittle-something, where you can't defend against it, so that gave us some wounds. I was able to maximize on that though and use the battle hammer better. I was also the healer, so I worked on keeping our party (specifically Nez and Lily) from dying. In the end, Nez freed Lily and we got out alive, yay.

Final Score:
Mice - 1
Rats and Skittle-crittle - 0

Analysis: Still seeing it as a very cute game, and I like the ongoing storyline. It's an RPG adventure with quick and short sessions, and no one has to be the GM. I like being able to swap out characters and try different things, and I like the ongoing nature of it where you get to keep your items (and swap with each other if need be).

Verdict: I'm looking forward to our next adventure and I think we're all having a good time. I wonder what happens to the game once all the scenarios are completed, though (if it gets played again or sits around).
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17. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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Play #2: Sunday February 9, 2014, The Grapes of Rats

Bob was Tilda
Maggie was Maginos
Billy was Filch
Nikki was Collin

We discovered the Individual Achievements on the back cover and decided to start playing with them. It was a good choice for timing, as we encountered a bunch of cockroaches on the first tile, and Collin earned Roachmaster, which helped us on the 4th tile to keep the roaches normal instead of greedy, so yay.

We found the disguises along the way so when we entered the room with the rats playing their dice game, we got to play, and mainly earned more cheese for our little party.

On the second tile, Maginos earned the Cat Tamer achievement. Filch discovered he likes poison and cheese, silly mouse. Reading the scenario and the mouse chatter, we joked about Tilda being enamored with Collin. We forgot to play that up in the next chapter, but I think I'll try to keep track of that again, as it was amusing.

Final score:
Mice won, yay!

Analysis: I thought we would need to find the grapes due to the title, but we didn't. I found the dice game with the rats to be fun and amusing, and I'm glad we did the "right" thing to end up in that scenario. Playing with the achievements helped us a little without becoming a major thing, so I like the addition of that layer.

Verdict: We're having a good time. The game is cute and entertaining and I'm enjoying watching the story play out. Our friends Bob and Maggie are also awesome, and we're really enjoying getting to spend regular time with them. The game gets a 7 while the company gets a 9.
 
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18. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
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2/16/14
Play #3: Sunday February 16, 2014, The Forging of the Beast

Group 1:
Bob was Nez
Billy was Maginos (with Meeps)
Nikki was Filch

Group 2:
Bob was Tilda
Maggie was Lily
Nikki was Collin

We played with the Individual Achievements again and enjoyed seeing if we were getting anything. Collin ended up with Cheesemaster, although we didn't end up getting much cheese from it, but it was fun to hope.

In the King's Tunnels, we had a really rough time. The rats and roaches kept coming and not dying, so we ended up pretty surrounded. We managed to keep the ranged fighter (Lily?) back a few spots and the other two of us just kept 4 figures in the spot at the fork (us plus two baddies). I think we had 10 figures on the board with us, due to surges and the previous ones not dying. It was crazy! Then Tilda got pissed and took out 5 bad guys unanswered. That helped.

We managed to kill a few spiders and do a few other things to move the end chapter marker up, so we ended up with that on 9 and the (3?) surges put us to around 6. It was a little dicey at times, but in the end, we all came out alive and we managed to get all mice's levels up to 3, and Collin to 4 I think, so that should continue to help us going forward.

Final score:
Mice won, yay!

Analysis: Playing two parties at the same time was a little hectic, but I liked that we got to have all the mice out and involved, and I liked how they all came back together at the end. We had 6 characters and 4 players, so two of us played two characters, and we made sure they were split to the two parties (so we played in both parties), and I found that to be fun. It seems like there should have been a story moment when the parties rejoined, but otherwise I think it was a good scenario.

I also wonder about the things we don't find (special searches, for example) and if they have much impact on the overall story.

Verdict: Still having fun with watching the story unfold, but I suspect that this, like Betrayal at House on the Hill will have limited replay value once you know everything.
 
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19. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Play #4: Sunday February 16, 2014, Chapter 5, Cat and Mouse

On the first tile we had 3 super rats, which were knocked off by Filch and Nex.

Second tile we started with 5 roaches, so Nez concentrated on them and got Roach Master, yay. Tilda took out 3 (!!) spiders; we started with one and got 2 more with surges. Maginos was captured, although we did find the dinner fork here or on the next tile.

3rd tile, the Dining Hall, we finished the bad guys and surged with searching. Found Brodie last thing.

We finished the chapter on Page 6 and The End was on Page 8, so we were getting close! Yikes!

Analysis:
Enjoying watching the story play out.

Verdict: Still wonder about replayability, but since it's taking us a while to get through the story, it might be fine.
 
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20. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #4: June 1, 2014, Chapter 6, Barksburg Fields

Tilda, Nez, Filch, Collin

We started in the Dining Hall with 4 roaches, so Filch went for Roachmaster (and got it). Collin searched and found a sword, Tilda found Clawbiter (requiring 3 lore, sad trombone), and Nez found a scroll.

Second tile was the Kitchen. Collin searched (a specific *spoiler* place) and found needle and thread.

3rd tile, the Guard Room, we found 5 greedy (but not) roaches. Nex kept trying to construct the cats claw horn and failing. Collin and Tilda searched successfully and got random cards.

Tile 4 - The Sewer - we used Nez's Levitate scroll to get out of the water/across the water. It worked awesomely.

Tile 5 - The Tunnel Entrance - 5 roaches and 2 mousetraps. I got Brodie on my first turn and he took out the crow right away. We surged with Barksburg Attack, but also took out 1 rat and 6 roaches. We let Brodie do his first set of attacks and he didn't hut any of us, but pounced and took out 2 rats and 1 cockroach. Well done, Brodie.

Analysis: That was fun to let the NPC help us out, and it seemed crazy, the surge with what seemed like dozens of bad guys, but it turned out ok.

Verdict: Some people may diss it, but I think the storyline is really cute.
 
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21. Board Game: Mice and Mystics [Average Rating:7.43 Overall Rank:204] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #6: June 8, 2014, Chapter 7, The Missing Tome (dum dum dum!)

Filch, Lily, Tilda, Nez (Bob loves playing Nez)
Assignment: Find same colored sided tiles. We went for orange sides.
Also, special searches moved the page end away by 1. Very useful.

First room - 6 roaches - we love going for Roachmaster, and Filch got it this time.

Second tile Nez searched and found The Sewer (gray side). Filch got attached by roaches and took 2 hits and got captured, and lost his +1 attack spear Lily found the hook in the water and flipped the tile the next turn.

3rd tile, the Guard Room, we found the orange side, yay!

Tile 4A - The Pipes - Found it but with no door to that side (sad trombone)

Tile 4B - Walked back to other side of the tile and found the Dining Hall (orange, yay!) and 3 rats and a caterpillar. Either on this tile or the next we found Sorrow Blade with a special search.

Tile 5 - Nez found The Alchemist Room. My notes say, Encounter - "I cheese!" Actually 3 Elite Rats, Spider surged, Found Ring (special search). It was an active tile!

Tile 6 - The Queen's Chamber, an orange side with the door in the right spot, hurray! We encountered Elite rats, and Bob (Nez) found the tome.

Analysis: It as a different type of chapter and caused us to search more for the page moving and to turn over tiles. It was fun.

Verdict: It's funny how we seem to take the same (type) of characters over time. We should try to mix it up a little next time on purpose.
 
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22. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:336]
Nikki Ebright
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Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #1: Monday February 17, 2014

Billy and I pulled this out for a quick learning game after the other folks had left for the evening (we had played Cities & Knights and 7 Wonders with two friends). I've been nervous as when I played before I got shoved into pits and hit by lasers and turned around the wrong way so much that it really wasn't much fun for me. But it was a good time to try and I was ready.

We reviewed the rules, and Billy put out an easy scenario, Dizzy Dash. He picked out Zoom Bot and I played with Twonky. Reading the Twonky card, I knew this was the right character for me: "(Twonkys) know there is no escape."

I've played a lot of Space Alert since I played RoboRally the first time, so the programming part was easy for me, and I was able to keep a pretty good eye on the directions I was going to be turned on the gears and conveyor belts. I don't think I got turned in any direction I didn't mean to, and I placed myself generally pretty favorably to be able to hit Billy if he came across my path. I got hit by a laser early on, but was able to get to a wrench and fix that on (I think) the next turn. I also took one damage on the last play of the game, but I figured that didn't matter.

Billy got to the first marker first, and then proceeded to work on getting to the double wrench spot to get an options card. I got to the first marker and then worked on getting to the second, and I was able to use the conveyor belt to my advantage. He got a card that allowed him to bank a card for the next round, but I got to the second marker first.

While he was working his way to the second marker, I worked on getting to the third. We didn't really run into each other or cross paths, so it almost became two solitaire games, although when I ran out of other things to do, I'd face his direction, just in case.

I was in line with the last marker, but I was facing up and I needed to go left. I drew some movement cards, but no Turn Lefts. I did draw 3 Turn Rights, so I did that, and then moved and got to the third and final marker. Billy probably would have gotten to the second on the next turn.

Final score:
Nikki - 3
Billy - 1 (almost 2)


Analysis: In a two player game on a beginner board, both of us were able to program our moves pretty quickly, and we didn't have to work out how to get out of a hole that we'd gotten into due to the other person causing a disruption in our plans. I think with more people, it'll be more congested and there will be more jockeying for position and moving to cause damage to other players.

Also, Billy going for the option card slowed him down, but with more players and/or a more complex board, I think they will be an advantage.

Verdict: I had fun and I'm looking forward to playing again.

Afterward, we were looking at some of the other setups, and I realized I was introduced to the game on advanced boards (pits, conveyor belts that go off the edge, etc). I'm preferring the idea of working my way up to the more complex boards.

 
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23. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:336]
Nikki Ebright
United States
Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #2: Sunday March 9, 2014

We had been intending to go out to a Brazilian steakhouse with our friend Caio for ages, and finally did it on Sunday morning. As brunch was winding down, we decided that grocery shopping and jogging (on our to do list) were going to have to wait a bit (as brunch was all you can eat), so we invited him over for a game.

He had never played RoboRally before, and being a good sport, he decided to give it a try. We played an easy board, but it had pits and you could walk off the edge, and there were 4 flags.

With 3 people, there were more instances where we ran into each other or shot each other, and it was amusing (thankfully we all have a good sense of humor about it). Caio and I both died within a turn of each other from laser fire, and then Billy was ahead of us, but he lost his robot to laser fire soonafter. I powered down at one point between that first death and the second one, and it helped keep me going longer. I had one hand with all rotate cards, and that same turn, Billy had a hand with all movement and no rotates, which was amusing. One turn, I was limited to 5 cards, and had to use them all, so I ran myself into a wall a bunch of times.

Billy and Caio were competing for the 4th flag, and I was lagging behind some, but then Caio played his cards in the wrong order and the conveyor belt ran him off the edge with his last life, and Billy couldn't quite get the right cards to get there, and I managed to zoom across the board and hit the 4th flag on my last life.

Final score:
Fourth flag - Nikki
Third flag - Billy and Caio

Analysis: I enjoyed it again, even with the little pushing and shoving and ending up rotating in front of lasers that happened. It's a little bit of Keystone Cops, with all the comedy of errors. I'm not sure how it will play with so many extra people (it goes to 8); would it be a fun game or just Fluxx (little ability to control your fate) with robots?

Verdict: Looking forward to playing again, and I think scaling it up slowly is the right move.
 
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24. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:336]
Nikki Ebright
United States
Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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April 7, 2014

Death Trap board

Billy - 3 flags, 2 life tokens left, 2 damage tokens at the end
Nikki - 2 flags, all 3 life tokens, 1 damage token and close to 3rd flag
Shawn - 1 flag, 1 life token left, 4 damage tokens
 
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25. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:336]
Nikki Ebright
United States
Centennial
Colorado (CO)
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Play #4: Saturday April 19, 2014

Life is so busy these days that we planned this game night with some friends about a month in advance. We played two games, this one and Tzolk'in: The Mayan Calendar.

I forgot to write down the name of the challenge, but we went with a more difficult one. The conveyor belts could drop you into a pit or off the end and flags 2 and 3 were across the board from each other and difficult to reach (at least they seemed that way to me).

By the end, everyone but Billy lost 1 life. Bob fell off the edge once but the rest of us managed to stay on the board. I was going to power down but ended up dying on that turn before the power down. Julianna powered down at some point near the end I believe.

There was a little bit of pushing and shoving during the game, but I felt like overall I got a pretty good mix of cards.

One rule we realized we'd been playing wrong: when you die, you come back with 2 "injuries", and we'd been wiping the boards. I guess we were playing on easier mode, heh.

Final score:
Billy (as ZoomBot) - made it to all 3 flags
Julianna (as Twonky) - made it to 1 flag and was almost to the 2nd one
Nikki (as Twitch) - 1 flag
Bob (as Hulk X90) - 0 flags

Analysis: With more interaction, there were more chances that your plan could go awry. I still haven't figured out a plan for getting around lasers and how best to use the belts to my advantage.

Verdict: As long as you don't take it too seriously, it can still be a fun game.
 
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