What Did You Play Over The Last Week? 7/28/2014
Brandon Kempf
United States
Jefferson City
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The weekend is now over, and as we toil at our assorted labors, we should recount our past week in gaming.

So, all you gamers, bring your mini-session reports and stories of your week in gaming greatness, as you pop in here to answer the question:

What did you play over the last week?

The forum version can be found here:

http://boardgamegeek.com/article/16438420#16438420

Check out the subscription thread:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/4115320

Also, don't forget to relive all your Video Game excitement over on VGG!

http://videogamegeek.com/geeklist/176703/28-july-2014-what-v...

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1. Board Game: Rise of Augustus [Average Rating:6.77 Overall Rank:777]
Brandon Kempf
United States
Jefferson City
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So last week saw us play a couple short games on Tuesday night when Gabby decided she wanted to play a couple games, so we broke out Indigo and Zombie Dice. Kerensa and I ended up tying that game of Indigo, with gems going out the portals we shared more than not and Gabby getting left behind pretty quickly. Zombie Dice was more of the same for her, the dice were not favoring her that evening either as I ended up getting 9 brains on my first turn and walked away a hero.

Friday night saw us break out Rise of Augustus for a quick game, part of the beginning was spent re-learning the rules, but they are simple enough that we just started playing and got it as we went, been awhile since we have played it and from my standpoint, I know why. I must have sucked at Bingo in a past life because judging from my measly 69 points this week and then looking back through the score pads, I never have done well at this one. But it's a fun game and I do enjoy playing it, hopefully it gets played more often.

Speaking of games that I never win, Kerensa decided that I should get my rear end kicked at Carcassonne on Saturday night while the kids ate pizza with their friends in random places around the house. Actually this one turned out closer than I would have imagined after I scored a massive 34 point road late in the game that I thought would never get finished, yes we were playing with Carcassonne: Expansion 1 – Inns & Cathedrals. But in the end, Kerensa won 150-146.



Then we gathered Gabby and her friend for three games of four player One Night Ultimate Werewolf, good time as usual, with the villagers winning two games and the final game going to the werewolves(Kerensa and I) when the girls couldn't decide who to vote for to kill and they split their vote, hahaha. Parents RULE!!

Finished up the weekend with a quick play of Justice League: Axis of Villains Strategy Game, picked this up at Target for $7.50 on clearance based on a tip from a couple Twitter folks. Really isn't that bad of a game, but it definitely seemed to fall into the, "Play with more or else", category. Gabby and I didn't stand a chance, we were overrun fairly quickly. This one is basically a lighter weight Castle Panic with the Justice League thrown on top for the theme. Not bad and I don't know that you can go wrong with $7.50, but we'll see how much this actually ends up getting paid. I was really at Target looking for clearance copies of Star Trek: Catan, which is reportedly on clearance for $14. Happy hunting!



Hope everyone has a fantastic week!!!
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2. Board Game: Splendor [Average Rating:7.50 Overall Rank:112]
Fernando Robert Yu
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A great week of gaming for me, culminating with me getting to try one of the new hotness!

Friday

The fantastic weekend of gaming started well Friday evening, as we had a boardgaming council in Paulo's house instead of the usual McDonald's!

Terror in Meeple City = 1 Play

We decide to start with this light game which Pau has not yet tried. The initial buidling demolishing actions quickly turned to vehicle flinging and monster breath actions with Jim once again proving his prowess, but with Pau surprising everyone with accurate long range flicking of his own! His monster still lost all its teeth though, and Jim was getting beat to collecting building floors which he needed for his character bonus! The game ended quickly and while I guessed that Kent correctly ate the most meeples for +7 bonus points, Kent and Pau had the most sets of meeples, and Kent was just 4 points ahead of Pau for the win! The final score breakdowns were: Kent 43 (Meeples 30 Floors 7 Teeth 6) Pau 39 (Meeples 20 Floors 3 Teeth 6 Bonus 10) Me 24 (Meeples 10 Floors 5 Teeth 2 Bonus 7) Jim 16 (Meeples 10 Floors 4 Teeth 2).


Kent (red) Pau (blue) Jim (green) and myself (purple) had a great time demolishing Meeple City!

Goa = 1 Play

I wanted to get another crack of this game as well as teach this to Pau, who has liked auction games so far. The game was a repeat of the inaugural game in the sense that Jim won the first player tile and never relinquished it throughout. He also managed to have a good monetary lead throughout the game and thus managed to win the tile which made 1 pt plantations 3 points each. Kent and Pau collared the red tiles which gave them resources every turn, and Kent and Jim both went for expedition cards again, with Kent again conserving them while Jim used the bulk of the cards, especially those which made him spend money in order to progress on his tech tree. Pau really focused on getting ships and plantations as he made a hard charge in progressing his techs. I managed to get the 2 5VP purple tiles so I focused on getting the 6 goods I needed for each tile in order to flip and gain the 5 points for each. It was late in the game where Jim realized he had mistakenly used 1 ship in order to progress instead of using 1 ship per spice good, but it was too late to repeat the game and we just continued on. This may have mattered though since Jim won by just 1 point over Paulo, with Kent not far behind. In any case, there is always next time!


Jim (green) 52 (???) (Progress 30 Colonies 10 Cards 3 Money 3 Plantation 6) Pau (blue) 51 (Progress 35 Colonies 10 Cards 5 Plantation 1) Kent (red) 47 (Progress 24 Colonies 10 Cards 11 Bonus 2) Me (yellow) 37 (Progress 19 Colonies 6 Plantation 2

7 Wonders = 1 Play

The game of Goa took quite some time (around 2 hours) so we needed to wrap up the night with a quick game, and this was selected over San Juan. My house rules was that each one randomly select 2 wonders and then pick one and decide which side to use. I end up using Rome A, while the B sides were all taken with Jim using the Great Wall, Pau Halikarnassos, and Kent with Abu Simbel. Pau went with a military and science focus, but science was also contested by both Kent and Jim (using his Great Wall stages), which meant that no one could get a really ridiculous score with green (although Pau ended up with 25 and Kent with 16) . I went with a very heavy blue strategy where I got 31 points, and thus was enough for me to pull ahead in this tightly contested and close game!


Me (Rome A) 60 Jim (Great Wall B) 57 Kent (Abu Simbel B, with him showing the 2 leaders cards which he managed to entomb for 20 points!) 57 Pau (Halikarnassos B) 52

Saturday

My wife Betty and my son Shawn attended an 830 am - 5 pm seminar, and this meant I had a lot of time to bum around. I knew Kent was going to be in the area so I got to arrange to meet him for some morning gaming in Starbucks in a mall close to a couple of stores!

BattleLore (Second Edition) = 1 Play

Kent got to join me in Starbucks at 10 am. I already had some coffee and breakfast and had found a nice table for gaming which just fit the map of BattleLore (Second Edition), which Kent elected to try first. This was his first game and of course he selected the Uthuk faction while I again use the Daqan. The selected scenarios were the Blind Muir Forest for the Daqan, and the Howling Giant Hills for the Uthuk, which were actually the same scenarios in my last game. I went with my usual composition of 3 Citadel Guard, 3 Archers, 2 Cavalry, 1 Rune Golem, and 1 Roc versus Kent's 4 Archers, 2 Hounds, 2 Obscenes, and 1 Chaos Lord, with 2 starting lore points. The scenario number for both was at C2, so we randomized who had the initiative and it went to Kent!


Starting setup


Early game: The Uthuk archers had the range advantage and could ignore 1 blocking terrain due to the special scenario rules, so Kent used this to ravage my missile units as his archers and 1 obscene unit moved on top of hills, which grants Kent 1 VP everytime he had more units on hills than me. I also move my archers onto the VP banners, and as of now had more units in the center, which granted me 1 VP. His rightmost hound unit did manage to destroy my archer unit occupying the banner on my left, even as my Roc and Cavalry eliminate Kent's Obscenes on the hill in the center. The score is tied at 5 VP apiece.


Midgame: The tide started to turn when I use my Lore to cause a magic portal to appear beside the hill which had the Uthuk banner in the rear of his center. I then marched a Citadel Guard unit through and they managed to occupy that spot after pushing the Uthuk archers off. My Roc and Cavalry had then destroyed the Hounds occupying the banner on the left flank, with the Roc firmly squatting on it. Kent then sent his other hound unit together with the Chaos Lord forward, and they managed to destroy 1 Daqan cavalry unit but failed to dislodge the Roc from the objective. This meant I would be accumulating more VPs from now on unless Kent could do something about it!


End game: Kent's lack of melee units means that his archers could not dislodge my units on the banners, and while he regains his advantage in controlling the hilltops the Chaos Lord could not do much as my Rune Golems and Cavalry destroy the last Hound unit. I end the game with a score of 17 VP to Kent's 12, and the Daqan rule the field again!

Marvel Dice Masters: Avengers vs. X-Men = 3 Plays

Up next was this dice deckbuilder. We decided to go with the 8-20-20 format, and the teams we selected were:

Me: Beast (M666), Storm (Afrikan Princess), Hawkye (Longbow), Human Torch (Johnny Storm), Venom (Mac Gargan), Nova (Human Rocket), Professor X (Charles Francis Xavier), Phoenix (Redd), Distraction, Gearing Up.
Kent: Beast (M666) Gambit (Ace in the Hole) Mr. Fantastic (Brilliant Scientist), Hawkeye (Longbow), Human Torch (Johnny Storm), Punisher (McRook), Loki (Gem Keeper), Storm (Wind Rider), Smash, Focus Power.


Game 1: This was the closest game of Dicemasters yet! Kent managed to get a HUGE turn in when his assassins cleaned my field area of heroes and did around 12 points of damage with Punisher, Hawkeye, and a couple more guys, bringing me down to just 3 life! I then managed to build a Beast Wall and managed to get Professor X out, and together with Nova managed to crawl back and get Kent down to 1 life! I too was at 1 life and fnally lost when Kent's Storm caused me to reroll 1 character to energy and thus take 2 damage and lose. It was awesome! Kent 1 (1st) Me 0

Game 2: I manage to build a Beast wall early as Kent goes for his assassins first. I get to bypass his defenses through the Human Torch as I field sidekick after sidekick and attack with those early while he had no defenders. Nova and Storm then did their job and manage to clear his field and I get in a huge attack to bring his life down to 0 for the win! Me 11 (1st) Kent 0

Game 3: This was basically a repeat of the 2nd game, but I get to do it faster and thus win the deciding game! Me 18 (1st) Kent 0

Kent and I then left Starbucks and walked over to another branch of my FLGS (Neutral grounds) nearby. We talked with a few other buddies of ours and watched them play Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game and Warhammer 40,000 for a while before having lunch and then moving over to another store (Beer and Boardgames, which is a branch of my online store Gaming Library) so I could pick up my copy of Navegador, Sekigahara: The Unification of Japan, and the Flash Point: Fire Rescue – Veteran and Rescue Dog expansion. I was hoping Hans (the young owner of Gaming Library) brought my copy of Splendor, but that was not the case. The store did have a demo copy though, so Kent, John (the store manager), and I get to play this latest hotness for the first time!

Splendor = 3 Plays (NEW)

I had watched several videos on the game, so I teach both guys the mechanics and we were up and running in no time. Man, the first game was a blast! The mechanics are dirt simple since you are either picking up chips, buying a card, or reserving a card, and looking to see if a noble visits you. Dirt simple, nothing special, but there is something with this game that is addicting. John had to entertain clients after the first game, but Kent and I liked it so much that we played 2 more games (maybe it has something to do with the bottle of stout beer I had. Beer and boardgames DO seem to match)!


Game 1: John sulks as I reach 15 first to end the game. Kent is short with a score of 13.

Game 2: This was a VERY quick game (around 15 minutes) as Kent builds his engine early and crushes me with a score of 15 to my 4.


Game 3: This was a very close game as I reach 14 points while Kent was at 12 or 13. He then gets a card and reaches 15, and since I was the first player I did not get another turn and lose. Argghhh!!! Kent savors his 2 victories at my expense!

Kent and I enjoyed it so much that Kent was making serious offers to buy the demo copy when he found out that Gaming Library had no unowned copies available, while I decided to drive to the flagship store in order to pick up my copy of the game before picking up my wife and son from their seminar. Great day of gaming!

Sunday

Sunday was more laid back as I get in some games with my kids in the afternoon.

Splendor = 2 Plays

I teach this to Sharlene and manage to get in a couple of games.

Game 1: I get a better engine going and was in a position to finish the game early, but Shari was getting frustrated so I delay a bit and build up for a big last buy, which was good as Shari reached 14 before I buy a 4 point card and I win 18-14!


Game 2: This was an exciting game since Shari and I were neck and neck. I manage to snag 2 out of the 3 Noble cards, but Shari was buying more expensive cards and we both reach 15 in the last turn. We then count the cards and Shari wins since she used 15 cards to reach 15 while it took me 17 cards!

Flash Point: Fire Rescue – Veteran and Rescue Dog = 1 Play

Shawn was more hyped in using the Rescue Dog, so I setup a recruit level game. We control 2 characters each, with Shawn also controlling the Imaging Technician and me using the Veteran and Driver/Operator. The early game has the Dog and Imaging Tech tag team as they manage to rescue 2 victims in succession, while the Veteran also goes in and moves through several rooms and pulls out another victim to the curb, awaiting the ambulance to come over to revive him. The rescue dog went in again and reach the 4th victim, but by that time the fires were causing multiple explosions and the fire engine operator really had his work cut out for him as he kept on putting out fires. The dog still could not drag the victim out as its path was always blocked by fires, but the Imaging Tech finally cleared a path for the dog and the victim was rescued. The Imaging Tech was in the ambulance and it drove over to other side to meetup with the Veteran and the victim he pulled out on the curb, reviving him, but more explosions cause the damage cubes to run out, causing the team to lose just as the dig reach the 5th victim and was in the process of dragging her out!


The poor rescue dog is surrounded by flames while dragging an unconscious victim as the building collapses, just as the veteran and imaging technician rescue the 4th victim. Damn!

OTHER GAMES PLAYED DURING THE WEEK:

Monday

Jim was available for the the day so I visit his place for some games!

Seasons = 1 Play

This has become standard 2P fare between me and Jim. We use the Force of Destiny Enchantment card which gives you 3 crystals whenever you use the destiny die, which should make the decision whether or not to use it more difficult! In any case we proceed to the draft phase, and I notice a risky combo for me to gamble on. This involved drafting 2 Damned Soul of Onyx familiars (risky since if I cast them I gain 10 crystals for each BUT lose 3 crystals for each familiar at the end of each round they stay with me), the items Arus's Mimicry (Discard or sacrifice a power card to gain 12 crystals), and Selenia's Codex (return a magic item to your hand). I set these up for the 2nd and 3rd years. Early in the game Jim goes for a replicator strategy again as he churns out 7 point replicas like mad. I manage to set up a crystal leeching engine with both Titus Deepgaze and Filgrim the Avaricious, and this boosts me to the lead in crystals early. We also both use the Destiny die often, and the game was turning out to be a race to have the most destiny points as well. The 2nd Year sees me really gain a lot of crystals as I summon The Damned Soul (gaining 10 crystals), then using Arus's Mimicry to sacrifice it before I lose 3 crystals at the end of the round, for a net gain of 22 points! I manage to repeat this at the 3rd year when I use Selenia's Codex to bring Arus's Mimicry back to hand and then proceed to cast the 2nd Damned Soul! I had a HUGE lead by game end, made even more since I got 20 crystals more for having 1 Destiny point more than Jim! Jim did get 20 points due to having more power cards, and he had a HUGE score (over 100+ points!) from his maxed out tableau, but this was not enough to overcome my huge lead so I win the game handily!


Me (purple) 189 Jim (yellow) 130

Bruges = 1 Play

This has not been brought out for quite some time since Kent has been averse to it after his first couple of plays. Well, it is just Jim and me so I decide we play this other tableau building game. Jim manages to hire a personality which reduces hiring the cost of future people by 3, so he goes on a hiring spree after that. I manage to build a money and extra action engine using personalities which are activated by workers (namely brown and blue), and I use the extra actions to either gain more workers or gain more money. I also focus a bit more on dealing with disasters and this paid off for me since Jim was hurt big time when he lost all his money to a disaster and had to waste turns gaining money back. I get the early bonus from having the lead in canals (only to lose my canal to a fire) which Jim later gets. He gains the bonus for more personalities (as expected) but I manage to go higher on the reputation track and thus gain that bonus. The end game has me surprisingly outscoring Jim with personalities, since while he hired a lot many of them had low VP scores, while mine were worth more VPs. I thus win this one with a score of 47 to 39.


Me (blue left) 47 Jim (right green) 39
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3. Board Game: Asgard [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:1913]
Steph Hodge
United States
New Hampshire
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Hi all!

I seemed to have been a bit lazy this week with the gaming. I did get a bunch of gaming in but Ron was sick mostly so we didn't play as much as normal.

Monday was regular Monday night I learned Buy Low Sell High. This was an interesting game. I took to immediately. It is exactly how it sounds. You want to buy when the market is cheap and low and sell when it can get you the most $$. on your turn you can buy/sell in the 3 types of stocks and play a colored card in one of those stocks to either help or hurt it depending on what you are trying to do.

Clever game that I crushed the other 3 players very handily. mwaahaahaa

I got 163 to 86 to 80 to 31. Basically, my new favorite? haha No but it certainly helps like the game more.






Second and last game of that night was Masters of Venice. I hadn't known anything about this game. All I knew is that I own it and haven't played it. I picked it up in an auction sometime back because it is a very pretty game. But I honestly didn't know anything about it. This is another stocks and market type game. Usually something I might not go for. It was a cute game but something I will probably be passing along at some point. A lot was happening and this price goes up that price goes up. that one goes down... fulfill the deliveries- auction new roles. You know a bit of everything!


players wheel to represent what $ you would bid for role selection and the action spot you are going to take for the round.


My stocks at the end of the game. You sell them in for their value.


End of the game. You can kind see the score markers in the back looks like I came in 3rd. Red.

That was all for Monday. So During the week Ron was a bit under the weather. We managed to get a few games in.


We played Helios. The more I play this game the more I like it. There is something so great about it. When it first came out and was available I was like meh doesn't look that interesting. Then I played it and was pretty much blown away.

It has a few problems -like the race for the characters which I think could be fixed with only allowing one buy per round. In the 2 player rules they were a bit funny as well. They have you playing 4 rounds and each round you switch turn order- however you are not resetting the board. The board remains the same in rounds 2 and 4. So, by what they are explaining here it really gives the 1st player the advantage. I think a house rule to change it so the first 2 rounds and last 2 rounds will change the first player. They do this because they want to make sure we have more than two rounds to activate and buy characters. I think it needs a bit of help- but should be easily fixed.


Beautiful components used. These are the Mana gems.


These are the resources and temples.


After the first round or two I forget in this 2 player game.


Start player marker.


Because it says in the rules to put on your bookself for decoration. I did just that- for him to watch over us while we play. In the game they give two start player markers and one is use in game and one is used as decoration on your bookshelf. I did just that!

After that we played a game of Corto. I wanted to play this with Ron since I thought he would enjoy it. I am not sure if he was just sick but he thought it was only OK. Sure, we only played it 2 player which probably isn't the best count anyways. He want to play with more people.

This game is neat because you have different playing boards that you arrange however you want which will make for a different experience. We played with the Red, Blue, and green boards. out of 6 to choose from (purple is no where to be found). It is somewhat area control and somewhat take that. I don't really like take that games but this doesn't hurt like others hurt. You can play attack cards or cards to make you play more disks to the board. score points and count up at the end. It is actually a very fast game I think we played in 15-20 minutes.


good vs evil?





The boat- allows you to move the boat up or to the right one space and place a token down.


Portrait of evil.

Later in the week we ended up playing a game of The Palaces of Carrara 2 player. Ron was sad since I crushed his hopes and dreams. I think I won by 100 or so. I took a few pics. BGG hasn't been accepting most of my pics so sometimes I go back and try to resubmit but for the most part I just say screw it. It takes a long time to submit and accept photos on BGG- not gonna lie.




end game look


red alwasys deserves to get Lucca... it is only right in the world.


Saturday brought a few friends to the house. We had plans to play Asgard first thing. I just bought this the other day and realllly wanted to play it. I got it set up for 3 players since Joe wanted to play when he got there. He arrived a bit later than expected so we only got in 2/5 rounds of the game before a few other friends showed up. I didn't know when other people might be showing up.

Anyways I had Ron read the rules before hand so we could get to it. It is a very complicated game- much like Madeira in that the rules are a bit of a mess and lots of moving parts. It also feels the same where you have to play the game 4+ times before you really know what you are doing and won't have to look at the rule book for help. Yes, a bit of a learning curve with this game. Otherwise it seems very fun! I left it set up in hopes of playing later that day which didn't happen- now it is just sitting there asking to be played!!!

In the game it is like Glass Road in that you have all your cards and you choose 3 gods to visit in the round. It is different in that 1st player goes and second player can go choosing any of the 3 cards he selected. It is worker placement that you place your disks on the god spaces and do the actions. You are ultimately trying to get the most VP's. You can get temples and win battles. We didn't get to the big battle at the end where I am sure you gain lots of points. I am so excited to play again.

I just changed the geeklist item from Corto to Asgard since I just wrote all that about the game. I hope you understand.

Here are my pics. I love this game and bought this game because it is just so damn pretty. It's quite amazing.















So we played a couple rounds of that and then had 5 players. I suggested Sluff Off! since I knew Carrie would love it. I was right she loved it. Joe hated it and called it foolish. OK Joe we understand now you don't like trick-taking games. I love this game. I love trick-taking games. I think it is great and quite fun! Overall- it took an hour so it could have been worse haha.




By just the ending of that game mark showed up so we split into two tables of 3 each.

The other table went to play Eclipse.



Mark Carrie and I played a game of Helios. I thought they would enjoy it. It was a learning game so it was a bit slow going to see all the mechanics and everything. I think they enjoyed it. I thought I had the win then I made a terrible choice at the end which gave mark the win at 146 to my 144 and Carrie ended with 129 I believe. All-in-all pretty close game! I love it!

They actually liked our second game more than Helios. We played Castle Dice. Carrie had seen it in the store and was like whoa huge box!! Yah it has a really big box! I taught them Castle dice and I was like it is much different from helios in that in stead of scores in the 100's you score under 10. I ususlly score around 6 in this game. I have never won it - it's so hard!

In the game there is 7 rounds and each round you have your selected dice. you Roll the dice you choose take out the barbarians (they attack you later) and put all the dice to the common pool. some dice show resources used to build parts of the caste others show animals which you can gain special abilities (like got first) if you have the most of that type.

Really cute game and would recommend it if you like dice games. Takes about an hour.

A fast game of Qwixx while we waited for the pizza and Eclipse game to finish up. One of the best fillers there is!

After we ate Eric and Carrie had room for 1 more game. We taught them a 6 player game of Auf Teufel komm raus. One of my favorite push your luck games. I was sooooo mad. Ron won with 1600 and I had 1590- How did this happen. I got paid 300 in the final turn I wasn't even thinking I was in a race with Ron for the win so it was a shock that I even came that close. Ron was in the lead for a while. Awesome betting and push your luck. So much fun!

They left and the 4 of use played a game of Nations. Why we ever play a game with Ron is beyond me. haha Ron always wins! I thought I was in the lead the whole game and some how Ron and Joe tie with the first place mark at 44. Joe actually won because of the tie breaker turn order leader. Crazy. I ended with 41 and mark doesn't want to talk about it. They all love the game and want to play again soon.


This was my final board I had like all my guys out! I still lost lol.

Final game of the night Joe promised would be under and hour that took like 2 hours was Nehemiah. This is a very much take that worker placement type game. I like what it is trying to do but I hated the game. It might have been the hour I think we finished at 2:15am took long of a game because too many symbols that we didn't know. I am sure it gets faster with play you know what everything does. But no one had played before so it was long going and everyone beat up on me -or so it seemed and it was all around just miserable for me. Just not for me.




Sunday was a lazy rainy day. Ron and I went to see Lucy at the movies - more importantly thought, I found an $100 bill outside there. WOOHOO! Good day!

We only ended up playing 2player Ipad version of Le Havre since I don't own the game yet... I should get on that.

More games this week I am sure! Maybe I can find someone to play a full game of Asgard with.

Happy Games!
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4. Board Game: Völuspá [Average Rating:6.70 Overall Rank:1671]
James Moline
United States
Tampa
FL
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Völuspá - Our friends from out of town came back for a day before heading back up north. They had a lot of fun at Disney and made a little side trip to Cool Stuff, Inc. where they picked me up my own copy of Voluspa and its expansion. I really like this game. It's simple enough, but presents a lot of options, and the tension between trying to score points now while not setting your opponent up to score points too easily is always interesting to me. My wife and I played a round of this before bed. It was a pretty close game, with my wife in the lead for most of it. I was able to come back late, though, and take the win.
Rating: 8/10

Guildhall - Guildhall has become one of our go-to gateway games. We played a game with our visiting friends and had a lot of fun with it. The rules are simple (but can take a little time to teach, since you have to explain every occupation's abilities), and it plays quick, and who doesn't like card combos? My wife jumped out to an early lead, but I managed to mostly keep pace with her. Our friends were a little slower off the ball, but they did pick up a head of steam eventually. I ended the game with exactly 20 points when I was able to use my entire turn to buy two 5 point cards. Everyone else was just a turn or two away from winning. Our friends immediately started talking about buying their own copy.
Rating: 7.5/10

Mice and Mystics - We made our first attempt at playing through the second chapter of Mice and Mystics. It was a 4 player game and there were a few rules issues, but nothing too major. We made the mistake of ignoring a couple of suggestions from the storybook early, and really paid for it later. Brodie got everyone in the party without too much difficulty (although, our Filch did a pretty good job, even taking one of Brodie's cards out before getting snatched). It was fun enough, and it's nice to know that it isn't too easy. I like winning, but if you win every game, you won't get much replayability out of it.
Rating: 7/10

Dominion - The last game we played with our visiting friends was Dominion. They had been looking at the boxes for the last 2 weeks, and finally asked about it. We pulled down the base game and set up the suggested first kingdom to play. It took a round or two for them to get the hang of the turns (the basic structure is simple, but it took a little bit to get the hang of keeping track of everything). As is often the case, they spent their first game buying at least one of almost all the cards. The scores were a little one sided as a result (39-36-30-16), but two thirds of the way through the game, the guy who ended with 16 points had a pretty clear idea of where he went wrong (too many actions, not enough extra actions). We only had time to play the one game, but they seemed to enjoy it quite a bit and were talking about getting their own copy. Everyone wanted to play again, and I think if we had had the time, it would have all clicked for them.
Rating: 10/10
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5. Board Game: Extra! [Average Rating:6.50 Overall Rank:3577]
meepleonboard
United Kingdom
Somerset/London
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There was me thinking "Nothing this weekend", but - ooh! - this week!

Foreign tour, so one game of Extra! on Thursday, again with a dice rolling app, pencil and paper. I scored 290, which is my best yet, and think I'm getting a handle on it. I have to say that I'm warming to this game very much, and keen to break the "500 is a win" condition, which seems tough, to say the least. Great little design.

Happy gaming!
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6. Board Game: Helios [Average Rating:6.84 Overall Rank:1352]
Keith Rudolph
Canada
Langdon
Alberta
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Our first game on Saturday was Helios which we picked up last weekend. The game felt very mechanical with a really weak theme that just didn't seem to make sense. Teaching the game was a little difficult because things like the buildings just didn't make sense in the context of the theme ("the Observatory increases the movement of the sun because it just does" sort of thing). The game works well enough but there was just nothing about it that really grabbed us. For now, we both feel that it's a rather mediocre game with a weak theme. We'll certainly give it another couple of plays to see if the perceived kinks work themselves out. I won the game by 40 points by focusing on moving the sun around rapidly.

Our second game was Russian Railroads; yeah, another mechanical game with a weak theme but this one just makes more sense to us and the mechanical bits seem to fit together a lot better. I focused entirely on track building while she went a more balanced route, maxing out her single factory track and spreading out her rails. As usual, the track strategy was slow to start but really started to pick up momentum by the half way point... right up until she screwed me out of a much needed locomotive which cost me dearly. I stormed ahead on the last turn when my white rail netted 120 points alone and was sure I had won, right up until I remembered that she had a bonus card for scoring at the end of the game which netted her 40 points. I ended up just losing out on this one, 315 - 307.

We played a second game of Helios on Sunday to give it another try. This time we ended up enjoying it quite a bit more though the theme is still not there and the reasoning behind things doesn't make much sense. Good mechanics, bad theme. But we can live with that, so it'll stay in our collection. Probably won't get played as much as some of our other stuff but we'll certainly play it from time-to-time. I won this game by a hair: 92 to 91.

We ended Sunday with two games of Galaxy Trucker which we haven't played for an incredibly long time. Luck seemed to be on my side for both games as my ships usually came out of the rounds in great condition. I won the first game quite soundly by 23 credits. I did fairly well in the first two rounds of the second game while my wife struggled with them. Things turned around significantly when I entered the third round and realised I had a whole 4 crew while she had something like 12. She picked up almost every cargo along the way and looted every abandoned ship which let her make up a lot of ground. She ended up winning the second game by 5 credits; the first time she has won a game of Galaxy Trucker! Since I've played the game a lot more than her and tended to just coast through the ship building phase, ending up with perfect little ships (and lacked any sort of pressure you get from 3 or 4-player games) and she usually struggled with it, we implemented a handicap system where she gets a full timer to build on her own before I'm allowed to start touching pieces. It's certainly helped in balancing out that phase.
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7. Board Game: Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures Game [Average Rating:7.82 Overall Rank:63] [Average Rating:7.82 Unranked]
Matthew Cordeiro
United States
Cumberland
Rhode Island
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X-Wing Regionals in Cambridge, MA. I won 3 games with an XXBB list. Had a fun time. Lots of different squads.
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8. Board Game: Saint Petersburg: New Society & Banquet Expansion [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked]
Doug Mann
United States
Corpus Christi
Texas
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Very little gaming, just a couple of plays Saturday to try out the expansions for Saint Petersburg. Played solo, first with Banquet only then with New Society only. Not sure about those purple cards yet.
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9. Board Game: Tortuga [Average Rating:5.76 Overall Rank:8481]
Joseph Peterson
United States
Round Rock
Texas
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Tonight's Game Night, we started out with Waterworks, a card game that has players trying to build a line of pipes to connect their valve to their faucet. On their turn, players will play one of the five cards in their hand. They can either play a pipe on themselves or play a leaky pipe on another player. Pipes are made of copper and lead. Copper pipes are sturdy and cannot leak but, any lead pipe can spring a leak. When a player has a leak in their pipe, they can either play one of their two wrenches on the pipe or they'll have to lay another pipe on top of the leaky one. This was actually a good amount of fun and, for a game older than 40, it definitely holds up as a classic.







Next up was Flippin' Out, a party word game which has players flipping over letter tokens as they name a word matching the category at hand. On their turn, a player will spin a spinner and, depending on which color the spinner lands on, all players will start naming off words which match the category. As players name a word, they will flip over a token with the beginning letter of the word they said and play will continue with more and more letters being flipped over. As play goes on, less and less letters are available so players will need to get creative and come up with something with the remaining tokens. If all of the tokens are flipped over, play continues with players randomly flipping the tokens back over and coming up with a word matching the letter they flipped back over. This game was pretty fun but, got boring the more we played. I'd call this an incomplete game as our last few rounds, we more just goofed off and came up with funny things than we did actually match the categories.







We then moved on to Dicecapades. In this game, players are moving around the board, doing different actions, rolling dice, answering questions and working their way to the end of the path to complete the final challenge. On their turn, depending on where a player is on the board, they will draw a card and have to do whatever the card says. The blue section is "Actionland" and the cards have challenges like drawing or balancing dice or charades. Yellow is "Thinkingtown" and cards will have players doing calculations or coming up with words or state capitols. Finally, red is "Triviaville". Here, players will roll a multi-color die and another player will read them a trivia question matching the color rolled on the die. All in all, we actually had a really great time with this game. What was more so a purchase just to get my hands on all the dice, turned out to be a pretty fun game. It's definitely not going to strain your brain or have you strategizing for the best way to win but, it's a nice fluff game that's pretty darn fun.







We finished out the night with Tortuga, a dice rolling, pirate game I Kickstarted a few months back that finally came in. In this game, players are trying to get their treasures from the island to Tortuga and must use their crew and fleet of ships to assist them in their endeavor. On their turn, players will roll their dice and place them in areas on their board, each area marking a specific action players will then take in order. First, players will expand their fleet which allows them to carry more treasures on their boats. Next, players recruit crew which once again allow them to carry more treasures from the island. Players then hunt for treasures which allows them to take new treasure and look for coins in the water around the island. Players can then board other pirate ships which allows them to steal other players' treasures. Finally, players can raid other players' crew which can again, allow them to steal treasures. Once all of these actions have been taken, players will then shift their treasures towards Tortuga. All treasures on the island move to the crew, crew treasures move to the boats, and boat treasures move to Tortuga. Players are only ever able to carry a maximum of 4 treasures on their boats and on their crew at a time. However, if players have more treasures than they do boats or crew, they must drop the treasures back onto the main island. This game was actually a blast for us, but it was a bit confusing at first. Once we figured everything out though, we were able to fly through it and enjoyed it. Also, I was very surprised but the scores were super close with the winner only winning by one point.







As always, we had a great time. Thanks for reading!
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10. Board Game: 7 Wonders [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:42]
Bill Kunes
United States
Cincinnati
Ohio
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A wonderful new game has captured the entire family's attention...

Monday
Not a play, but a worthy game note... I think I was the 32nd person to Kickstart Aquashere! More Feld goodness coming to our house later this year!

Tuesday
2x - 7 Wonders - New to us

7 Wonders has been around a while and is a game that a very high percentage of my geekbuddies own with a relatively high average ranking so I decided to give it a try and added it to a recent order to get half price shipping.

I introduced the family to the game early in the week for a forced family time before any more TV, etc. after dinner. It went well, considering after the first play they all asked to play it again now that they have a better feel for what to expect.

True to form, my youngest daughter won her first play: 49-43-39-26. My oldest daughter claimed the prize in play 2: 54-52-45-32.

It seems like resources are important in Age I, and adding some military in Age II and III pays big dividends. I didn't go after very many blue VP cards like the others all of whom scored more points than me in the second game.


Thursday
3x - 7 Wonders

7 Wonders was requested again and this time it was my wife and I who played a 2p game to see who using the dummy city mechanism worked. Well enough to my wife's satisfaction to suggest we'll see some 2p 7 Wonder action in our future. I won 52-44. Our girls joined us for two additional plays with my oldest beating me in the first play with more money as the tiebreaker: 49$-49-38-34. In our last play of the night, her and I swapped spots at the top by a narrow margin: 48-47-42-38. My youngest, again true to form has placed last in all plays after winning her first. Odd.

Saturday - 11th Annual A2:42 Camping Trip
2x - Banagrams
1x - Farkle
1x - Love Letter - mb
2x - Forbidden Desert - New to us

This weekend was our annual camping trip with friends who have been in our church small groups over the years which allow us all to stay connected as life takes us in different directions. A great, fun, quality trip which usually includes a few games.

We started with a few of us playing Banagrams while the later sleepers cleaned up after breakfast. Then we added a few players and rolled the dice in a game of Farkle after our attempt to start Citadels failed due to rain coming down and misting all over the table under our small shelter.

By the time we finished a mega player count game of Farkle everyone starting going off an doing their chosen activities for the day while a few of us opted to play some more games until after lunch. First up was easily my most enjoyable game of Love Letter to date as it finally clicked for all players involved... and I happened to pull off a comeback win! It was also nice to at least log one play towards my 10x10in2014 challenge during the trip.

Lastly one fo the guys had just purchased Forbidden Desert. I for one still enjoy Forbidden Island when the opportunity arises and was certainly curious to try this next offerint. We lost both plays but in the end it exceeded my expectations. I felt the constant evolving map was brilliant, the individual character hydration mechanism was great, and the tunnel protection is genius and thematic. More than its predecessors, we felt this game requires careful attention given to character abilities. You have to leverage each others' strengths and patiently, protect each others' weaknesses.

In our first play we didn't recover a single part and half the crew died of dehydration. In the second play we got some things right and recovered 3 of the 4 ship parts, but were a bit overzealous to leverage the Water Carrier to deliver water to the others who were making the desert runs, only to have the Water Carrier get caught in the sun and die of dehydration abruptly after a big share to two other players. A really fun game, I've borrowed it in hopes I can play a couple of times with the family this week, depending upon the work load.


Ongoing
Diplomacy - Fall Movement 1906

I picked up another Supply Center this past season and am poised to wrestle away a home supply center from two opponents in the next season or two, and elminate another. I'm sitting at 10 SC's at the moment with my biggest threat for the win simmering at 7.


meeple Keep playing...
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11. Board Game: Witch of Salem [Average Rating:6.65 Overall Rank:1547]
Tiago Perretto
Brazil
Curitiba
Parana
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Not many games, since Friday was RPG night.

FRIDAY

- Felicity: The Cat in the Sack - a five players game. This is a game I really like - it is fun, easy to teach, mean (in spite of the cute art) -, but it failed to get much traction in my group, so I'm glad when I can play it. Anyway, I won only one auction, but it was the best one of the lot, and I ended up winning. On the other end, it was the first time someone actually manage to finish with negative points!

- Money! x2 - two five players game. After its debut (a little over a year ago), Money! was left to the side: in this past play, everyone, but one player, ended up taking all the cards of a single currency, so it was a 4 players tie for the win. It was odd and the game took some bad reputation. I wanted to try it again, and this time, things were different: the play went smooth and fast (I guess around 20 minutes for each play), and no ties. In the first game, I finish with 400, and the winner with 610, and second place with a close 600 (we had to count three times to get the numbers right!). In the second play, everyone was meaner to each other, holding cards that everyone knew they won't score, but would prevent others from doing it. In the end, I won, with 440 money;

- Love Letter - a four players game. Love Letter stayed ahead of the curve for a long time, but now it entered a sort of slow time - I haven't played it for three months prior to this play. Anyway, it is still a lot of fun, and the player we made fun for being forgetful ended up winning, with a little help from me, when I, with the King and the Princess in the hand, choose to pass to him the Princess. He manage to hold it without being eliminated and won the whole thing.

SUNDAY

- Witch of Salem - a solo play. Witch of Salem was another game that had some attraction when we started playing, but since it proved itself to be really hard to beat, most passed it aside. I still quite enjoy the difficulty. Playing solo (with two investigators) it is, I think, the easiest way to play, since I know, with both of them, which gates are real and which aren't. I started out with some problems - I found that both portals on the blue seals were real, but I had discared one blue seal early on. So I had to wait for all the tokens be put in the board, to take the discarded ones and start to put those back in the board - a long road when playing with only two investigators. But I was eliminating the creatures well, and even when Necron appeared, his marker only moved 3 spaces ahead. The shadow of Dagon was giving me trouble (since I wanted to put the tokens in the board as fast as possible, but the effect of Dagon is prevent tokens to be put in the spaces without cost), but Robert Craven went to the Miskatonic and I was able to take the shadow out. I was in a good pace, sealing two gates and knowing that, of the other four, only one was real. Eventually I got the blue seal, and was able to shut down the power of Hastur, that wanted to enter our world. A win for the investigators!

A picture of how the game ended:


And that was it.

Regards,
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12. Board Game: Chainsaw Warrior [Average Rating:5.82 Overall Rank:6039]
Jason
United Kingdom
Norwich
Norfolk
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Certainly qualifying for some kind of resurrection award, this is the first time I've played my original edition of the game since circa 1988. I don't think the box has been opened since and opening it today does show the callousness of youth: chits loose in the box, decks of cards banded by elastic. (Forgive me, BGG, I didn't know any better back then.) This has been stored, along with my early Blood Bowl and Talisman board games, in a loft, my grandfather's shed, you name it... Remarkably, it's still in perfect condition.

I've been meaning to set it up since trying the app version - and it was a great deal of fun. There's something revelatory about going back to a childhood experience like this. I even appear to have a mini-expansion in the box, patently cut out from a magazine (it has to be White Dwarf, thinking about it).

I don't think I ever beat this, back then, but I do recall coming very close - once. It seemed unlikely I was going to wipe the floor with Darkness and his minions, today ... but I'd forgotten just how bloody hard the game was.

The first four cards were traps; the next a mutant which dosed me with radiation... which would set the seeds for my demise, a little over halfway through the game. I was preternaturally lucky with my character creation (eleven points for reflexes) which made me hard to surprise - but overwhelming odds got the better of me in the end. A healthy rack of equipment points saw me decked out with the blaster, flamethrower, laser lance, the experimental time grenades (see you in twenty minutes, Meat Machine), a found first aid kit and a Geiger counter... which was smashed by a cave in, and which would have saved me if it had been a bit more robust.

This was a huge amount of fun, and I can't think of anything else like it. I can't see me ever wanting to part with it - although it pales a little next to more modern titles, not least through the production quality. The cards really are wafer thin, although the board is nicely set up, and it contains all the information needed in summary boxes to speed you through the surprisingly simple gameplay.

Oh, those expansion cards were: combat shotgun, reaper chain gun, smash (steroid) pills for H-T-H, chameleon suit (additional hiding skill), dum dum bullets (extra damage with a firearm), holographic imagizer (escape combat or modifies a lucky shot) and temporal disturbance detector (never miss Darkness when using secret passages or not having to test reflexes to shoot him).

I guess someone thought the game needed to be made a little easier.


Rockwell
A couple of plays of this, as a two-player game with an AI third, once again, and I'm similarly evangelical about it as when I first tried it. A gorgeous game, unusual theme, and a very smart system means this is an engine-builder I'm going to keep coming back to. Managed to almost max out the achievements in my second game (one of the win conditions requires you to have six), although my opponent was far shrewder with her exports, and managed to make up plenty of victory points that way. I won by a scant two points in the second game, despite feeling I should have been way ahead (the hidden info aspect is one I haven't really appreciated in a game before; I really need to get better at reading/remembering what my opponent is up to).

This really seems to have flown under too many radars on the site, and it's becoming very tough to find in the UK. I'd urge people to have a closer look at it, whilst you still have the chance.
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13. Board Game: Advanced Civilization [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked]
Thomas Leitner
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
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A very good week highlighted by this great game.

This was my second time playing, though this time we agreed on a preset final round to shorten the game up a bit.

I played Italy in a six player game. I got a bit lucky in that no one played Ilyria, Italy's neighbor to the west. That gave me plenty of room to spread out.

Even so, Babylon got off to their usual strong start, but met with some serious calamities in the mid game which helped me out. I had some calamities as well, but was able to weather them a bit better.

In the end, I won by a narrow margin.

Advanced Civilization is a very long game (seven hours even with the shortened game) that requires a lot of people to play, yet it is one of the most intense, elegant, and fun games I've ever played. For my money, it's still the best civ game ever made.

Also:



I played Madeira twice this past week, winning both times. One game was a three player, the other a two player. This was my first two player, and it worked surprisingly well. I like Madeira more with each play and I'm really looking forward to the designers' upcoming game Panamax.



The final game I played this week was a great game of A Study in Emerald. I was a restorationist and picked up the Watson permanent effect early on, which increased my hand size by one. Coupled with a Freemasons card, which allowed me to cycle through my deck faster, I got Holmes as my agent and had him involved in three assassinations drawing three madness counters to end the game in the lead. My fellow restorationist was not in last, so I won.

All in all, I played some really great games this past week and had an unusual win streak .

Edit: One final thing I wanted to include. Those of you who watch Richard Ham's (Rahdo) Runthroughs know two things. One, his wife Jen is a glass artist, and two, that he uses an awesome chicken cup instead of a cloth bag to randomize game elements.

For this year's kickstarter, I donated at a level which allowed me to request a custom designed player piece. As I always play green, I requested a miniature replica of the cup with a green base. The beautiful result is shown below. My thanks again to the talented Mrs. Ham.

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14. Board Game: Asara [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:810]
Caleb
United States
Seminole
Florida
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Didn't think I was going to get any gaming in this weekend, but managed a 4-player Asara. I felt like I was behind most of the game (and indeed, my score marker was last on the score track throughout the annual scorings). But I did manage to secure enough second-places with short towers, and first place for most towers (5 in a 4 player game, which is pretty good) to tie for first. I was surprised to discover no tie-breaker in the rules!

We didn't play with the section that allowed you to buy cards, mostly due to the fact I didn't want the game to last overly long. We did use the lighted windows action as you can see below.

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15. Board Game: Angry Dice [Average Rating:5.47 Overall Rank:13026]
Jerry Wilkinson
United States
New Castle
Indiana
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Friday-

Ticket to Ride
Fossil

Saturday-

Angry Dice

Sunday-

Extra!
Castle Panic
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16. Board Game: SuperSystem (second edition) [Average Rating:7.41 Unranked]
CalicoDave
United States
Ohio
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Super System 2nd Edition (x3)

Had six people for some super hero goodness using the Super System 2nd Edition rules. This was a learning game for all of us but the rules are easy and flexible. We played three games the first of which was a learning game but after that we did some scenarios.



1st Game: We did a free for all first with three people per side. It was The Fission, Hawkwind, and Blackbird vs Kreighunde, Doc Simian, and Split Second. Split Second started with hypermoving to The Fission and taking him out pretty quickly. Meanwhile, Hawkwind and Blackbird took on Krieghunde. Doc Simian threw some street scenery at Hawkwind and Blackbird, then joined in with Krieghunde. When time ran out (the game lasted 5 rounds), The Fission and Doc Simian were down. The game took a while as we were learning the rules and some of the players were timid about just charging in.

2nd Game: In the second game one team (Doc Shock, Split Second, and Hawkwind) had to protect a VIP from the team of Wildman, Dark Templar and Deadeye. This game went pretty quick as both Dark Templar and Deadeye went down pretty quick and Split Second would just carry the VIP away from Wildman using her super run.

3rd Game: We had two players leave so the third game was 2 players per side each playing two characters. One team had "acquired" some important items and had to get the off the board on the other side from where they entered. This team was composed of Glock-Roach, Scorpia, Wildman, and T-Bolt. The defenders had to stop them and were Doc Shock, Split Second, The Fission, and Stalker. Wildeman and T-Bolt had some good movement so made a line for the other side while the Glock-Roach and Scorpia provided cover. The team got 4 of the 6 tokens off the board, one of which proved to be the real one so they won that scenario.

This is really a fun and easy game. The rules were fairly comprehensive, but the interaction of some of the powers had to be decided on the fly. We had characters throwing potted plants, getting knocked through walls, and swatting flying characters with street lights they ripped out of the ground. The game play was quite dynamic and everyone is wanting to play again.
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17. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: 10th Anniversary [Average Rating:8.30 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.30 Unranked]
James Garcia
United States
Harlingen
Texas
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I actually got some plays this weekend, and all at the last minute. Luckily I also was able to get in a random game at the beginning of the week.

Monday:



Tuesday was a rare day for me as we had little to do with wedding stuff and had some spare time. My fiancee had recently bought me Ticket to Ride: 10th Anniversary, so we played this version for the first time. Just wow at the components, so beautiful. Everyone knows TTR and I love it so I'll spare the details on how to play. I ended up winning against my fiancee by about 23-24 points. While not for everyone, if you are that big of a fan of TTR I highly recommend it. The only problem I had with it is that they failed to include a copy of the rules for the 1910 expansion. In case you were not aware the game comes with the 1910 expansion. Luckily for me I own the expansion already and was familiar with how it changes things.


Saturday:



I chose this picture because nothing else really matches. What I played is a game, it is nothing that is in the database, nor is it a prototype. I played 2 quick games of my wedding favor microgame with my fiancee, while we were waiting for something to finish chilling in the fridge. Since dice are involved I was doomed from the start, and she smoked me. She constantly rolled everything she needed, while the number one seemed to be my favorite number. She in one of the games purposely blocked a path just forcing me to take the harder route. Great strategy, but not necessary as dice hate me lol.


Sunday:


2 Plays
After running all over the place all weekend getting last minute wedding stuff, we finished what we could do around 8:30PM so I brought up the suggestion of playing some games. We ended playing 2 plays of Le Fantôme de l'Opéra. My fiancee is undefeated at this game, but I am determined to beat her at least once. Either she is that much of genius or I'm that stupid, but for the life of me I cannot beat her. This time was no different I lost both games. I lost as both the investigator and the phantom. The first game we played I was the investigator and it wasn't till what was the last round that I realized I had actually lost on the second round. After I figured out the card combination I realized I couldn't win, we finished out the game of course, but yeah I was right. Next game we flipped rolls. She narrowed it down to 3 suspects on the first full round. Ouch. I was stuck to playing some perfect phantom if I was going to win. We calculated that I had to pretty much survive 5 full rounds in order to win. Ha she obviously forgot how this works. I surprised myself by making it last 3 rounds. She got me out at a fault of my own. I chose the wrong person to move, and then moved them to the wrong space. Great game and one that we both enjoy despite the fact that I lose all the time. She is now 7-0.



The last game of the night was Tokaido. I recently bought a bunch of promos so we added those as well. I was leading almost the entire game, and I felt I was perfectly moving the dummy player to block her. She is just that good of a player strategically, everything I had done really didn't phase her as she caught up in the final stretch. After the bonuses she won by 5 points. I really thought I had this one. She swept me for the night.



This weekend is in fact my wedding. I might be able to get in a quick game here and there this week, but I'm not expecting much as we'll be really busy. Sunday after the wedding will involve us packing and getting things back from the wedding. On Monday we leave to Disney World for our honeymoon and will be gone for 8 days. I'm for sure taking my tablet so we will more than likely play digitally, but I'm trying to figure out if I want to take a small physical game or not. I should still be able to post though come next Monday as I'll be at the airport for while. Have a great week everyone.
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18. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:50]
Jeff C
United States
Beaverton
Oregon
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Sadly I was only able to squeeze one game in this weekend. Between getting roof estimates, organizing, replanting blueberry bushes, and a bday party we barely managed to get a game of Race for the Galaxy in. Still a great game, we played with Alien Artifacts but no orb. My wife was able to ride a rare minerals production engine to victory over my alien gene planet tableau. It was her first ever win so this should help prolong her interest!
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19. Board Game: Brass: Lancashire [Average Rating:8.01 Overall Rank:35]
Alex Drazen
United States
Massachusetts
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Friday, 7/25: Just miniature golf, thanks to a Groupon. Two holes in one apiece for myself and significant other. I actually shot even par... one of my best rounds ever.

Saturday, 7/26: Actual golf. Shot an 87 for 18 holes thanks to consistent mediocrity. The arboreal gods smiled upon me... I never actually lost a ball, despite hitting what seemed like half the trees on the course with several wild shots. Highlight: a 296-yard drive, according to the scorecard and my dad's GPS watch (I don't care that it was down a giant hill... that's the longest drive I've ever hit when the ground wasn't frozen).

Sunday, 7/27: The good stuff!

1 x Thurn and Taxis... won 25-21
1 x Brass... won by flipping someone else's port!
1 x Power Grid: Brazil... lost by $3 on the tiebreaker! (and should have won, if I was paying attention)

Monday, 7/28: More good stuff:

1 x Meuterer, won 40-35-35
1 x Maria, lost (France won on Turn 9).

I had a horrible time as Prussia/Pragmatic in that game. The political track wasn't favorable to Prussia, the Austrians were slowing them down in Silesia (not conquered until Turn 7, but never annexed out of residual bitterness that Austria was not fighting France, who was a new player but was quickly emptying his VP pool), and an extremely weak Pragmatic hand was unable to defend anything against a massive French invasion. The Pragmatics finally managed to push France back slightly on Turn 6, only to get surrounded and have 10 troops obliterated on Turn 7 (later I found out that, had they merely one more large Diamond, they would have pushed back the French and changed the entire course of the game). Prussia made a suicide run into Austria with the Saxon general, prompting Austria to buy the Quadruple Alliance at the start of 1743. Prussia did get its fourth general, and had a pretty good plan: defend Silesia and conquer Saxony. France was able to reduce Military Objectives at the end of Turn 7, and finally won by invading the Netherlands. I had an opportunity to prolong the game with a tie battle, but the place was closing so I decided to fight the battle to the end, and the tattered remains of the once-proud Pragmatic Army (a mere 1 general with 2 troops, all they could afford to bring back) were slaughtered easily.



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20. Board Game: Commands & Colors: Napoleonics [Average Rating:7.98 Overall Rank:295]
Jeff Kayati
United States
Worthington
Ohio
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Saturday CABS meeting and I meet with another Commands & Colors: Napoleonics who needed practice games for the upcoming tournament at WBC. We played Vimiero twice, switching sides. Both were British wins 6 - 4, but as always, the games played out very differently.

Limes is a cross between Cities and Carcassonne. Enjoyable enough, but I wish it played four, like Cities, instead of just two.

I've been playing a lot of Russian Railroads lately, at CABS and online. I've had some really strong games, but I find that closing in on ten plays, I'm losing interest. There doesn't seem to be a very wide variety of strategies, so the game is getting samey fast.

A dinner break and back to gaming with several German games, some that are hard to find in the US. First up was Schinderhannes a logic/deduction game where you attempt to deduce the location of the crimes of Schinderhannes. Interesting game that you could play with your family.

UGO! was next. It's a trick taking game with a twist of needing "farmers" to feed the spaces your suits occupy when you take a trick. Your first two suits are free of cost, but spaces three, four and five require progressively more farmers or you lose points. Sometimes massive points. Recommended.

Another logic game was next, Café Melange. By this time my brain wasn't functioning very well due to being overtired. Never a good time to learn a new game. I think that was primary reason I didn't care for the game, so I'd play it again to see if it was just my state of mind or the game. Rather AP inducing it seemed.

Needing something light and something I knew, we played a game of Port Royal, a push your luck game with a pirate theme. Easy on the brain and a good filler game.

Needing sleep, I was wrangled into one game of TransAmerica before calling it a night.

Oh, and on Thursday, I played my 200th game of Android: Netrunner, all of them face to face.

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21. Board Game: The Castles of Burgundy [Average Rating:8.12 Overall Rank:12]
Jon Enns
Canada
Herbert
Saskatchewan
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Well, we moved Lindy out and to Regina this weekend. That means that my game play will likely drop off drastically. Nevertheless this weekend we did manage a few between the moving, cleaning, packing and unpacking.


Friday night at Lindy's new place (actually she has moved in with Stacey) we played Famiglia.




Saturday morning we snuck in a game of Castles before we got back to the serious work. I lost badly. I can't believe how quickly I am out of touch with the intricate strategies. It made me want an immediate redemption game, which of course, I never got.




In the evening after a joint supper of take out pizza with Melissa and Stacey, we all played a game of Scattergories. Then it was time for Dar and I to go back home to our newly empty nest.




Sunday I tried Famiglia by myself. The solo play is actually pretty good.


4 games played this weekend.
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22. Board Game: Thurn and Taxis [Average Rating:7.12 Overall Rank:349]
Toms Leikums
Latvia
Jelgava
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Summer is in its full swing, so close to no gaming lately.

Just 1 game played last week.

Thurn and Taxis - 4 players

We had very close 4 player game. I managed to start quickly and got to all regions. Plus some points here and there it seemed like a sure win. But doing that I failed to use many houses, so minus 7 points in the end, and that's a lot. Still a win for me in the end with 17 points (second and third place had 16).
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23. Board Game: Colosseum [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:352]
Evan Dunn
United States
New York
New York
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This week was...

Colosseum - 1st play



In this game you control a Colosseum, and try to put on the best event possible across all of the players across all five rounds of the game. Effectively, your score is your best turn. Turns build on each other as you play, and the core piece is collecting the resources you need through bidding and trading. One element that's fun to think about is that you are allowed put on shows with less tiles than the event needs for fewer points. For example, a boat show with no boats, or a lion show with no cages. It's a little heavier than Days of Wonder's normal fare, but that's part of what makes this a good fit for my group.

Steel Driver - 1st play



This is a quick playing, dry-looking but satisfying game for 6. In this game, players bid over 5 rounds for control of the 6 companies. Winning the bid lets you spend your bid to lay track and collect money. At the end of the game, whoever has the most winning bids for each of the companies get to collect cubes from the board, trying to complete sets for bonus points. It's simple to play and quite elegant. In terms of the route building it's similar to Milestones, and in terms of bidding for the companies, it's similar to Imperial. The thing that makes this game special is it's simplicity in delivering that experience with the short playtime and the high player count.

Walnut Grove - 1st play



This is a very quick playing farming game for 1-4 players. Most actions are done simultaneously which speeds things along a lot, and there is very little player interaction with 2 players. I'm very interested to see how it works with 4, since more board spaces will be occupied making it harder to be certain you can pay the taxes. The mechanism for collecting the resource cubes is fun where you lay tiles to create chains of production areas and you produce 1 for each tile in the chain when a worker is assigned. I also like trying to properly budget everything so you can eat, heat and pay taxes is tougher than you first realize.

Level 7 [Omega Protocol] - 4th play



We played scenario 4. The marines had to rescue this scientist from the center of the board. They wound up moving too quickly and I was able to kill two of the marines (the crisis point had been triggered), and get my first win as overlord in this game. There's some debate among the players as to if they want to redo the level or just move on to the next one.

CV - 1st play



This came has the normal Yahtzee / King of Tokyo dice rolling mechanic. On each side of the die there are different resource symbols, and on your turn you buy cards from the conveyer belt on the board and add them to your life. The game breaks these into categories by which your life is judged (by the VP cards). It's your Intelligence, Healthiness, Relationships, your Job and your latest expensive toy. The game is designed well, and cards build and combo with each other, but more to the point, each card is thematically funny and very well thought out. For example, the University card produces either an intelligence or a relationship, but not both.
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24. Board Game: Arcana [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:2641]
Ed G.
United States
Fort Wayne
Indiana
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My wife and I played this for the first time on Saturday. We are very familiar with the deck-building mechanism, with the Ascension and Dominion lines of games among our favorites. So we were curious what this little game does differently from those giant franchises.

The combination of not being sure you'll get the card you want as a result of the bidding mechanism coupled with the also not knowing when the game will end make this game different enough from others sharing the general deck-building mechanism to get it to the table as a nice break from the routine. As the game comes with fewer cards than many others in the category and has no expansions, I initially worried that the game may grow stale soon. However, the unsure nature of your decisions while playing I feel give it legs not obvious by only considering the number of cards included.
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25. Board Game: Concordia [Average Rating:8.07 Overall Rank:23]
George Parker
United States
Aggieland
Texas
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Mixed batch this week...

Made a trip out to Roundtop, Texas over the weekend for my son-in-law's family reunion. Lots of folks and lots of dancing. Since I didn't know the crowd, I packed a few games. First and foremost, I brought dominoes cuz everyone knows the game most played in our neck of the woods is 42! Needless to say, I pulled them out and several games were played. Such a good trick taking, beer drinking, and story telling game. Ok...the beer drinking and story telling only relate to the social side of the game, but they are required!

And I'd be crazy if I didn't bring at least one copy of Spot it! for my granddaughter! She loves that game and is crazy good at it! I bought the Spot it Jr.! Animals edition a while back, but have added several others recently. And like clockwork, seconds after running to give me a hug she asked if I brought Spot it! So, over the course of the reunion, we played multiple games of Spot it! and this little 3 year old kicked Papaw's butt several times!

By the way...I recommend the Spot it! Splash for playing with the kids. Plastic cards! Tougher than regular cards and any stickiness can be cleaned off in the sink! thumbsup

Best new game I finally got a chance to play this weekend was Concordia. I saw this in the Funagain Games booth last year at BGG.CON and now wonder why I let almost a year go by before playing it. Actually, I think the box art turned me off and made me forget about it, but this one surprised me. Nice mix of set collection and deck building. Putting this one on my wishlist. I have family that will love it!

Finally, a few other regulars made it to the table...Tikal, Race for the Galaxy, and Machi Koro.


Until next week...Happy Gaming!
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