GCL Mafia 186 - The Peak of Summer
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Recommend
10 
 Thumb up
10.00
 tip
 Hide
Welcome to GCL Mafia Division's weekly list! If you stumbled onto this list by accident (or on purpose!) and want to know more about the Game Chat League concept, please see the GCL Mafia wiki page. If you would like to be notified each week when a new list is posted, subscribe here: GameChat League: Mafia Division Subscription Thread.

Active Members in order of preparation (Next week's preparer in bold):

Dolus
ecargo
McJarvis
Beloch
Epsilon_Balls
Happymrdave
eapeas
fdubois
touchstonethefool
charlest


The first few items are intended to foster discussion.

Please add an item to represent your gaming life for the week of August 4th - August 10th, 2014. List any games played along with any other information that you deem appropriate. Also, feel free to give life updates, fun facts, or any other super exciting and utterly interesting thoughts you may have.

Rules for the List are:
1) A weekly game is spotlighted and discussed. The poster will choose which questions are asked about it (whether its merits, drawbacks, experiences, etc.).

2) Themed questions are optional. They can be gaming-related topics (current news, trends, etc.) or non-gaming-related topics (food, vacation, unicorns, cleaning the gutters, etc.)
Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
  • [+] Dice rolls
1. Board Game: Keyflower [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:43]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Last weekend here in Austin we had BoardGameBash, an annual convention with open gaming for ~3 days. One of my goals there was to get several of my unplayed games to the table to see if I wanted to keep them or not. So this week I'd like to talk a little about expectations vs actual results in gaming. (And about Keyflower. )

Keyflower will be my example for a game I thought I would enjoy and I really, really enjoyed it. I thought essentially everything about the game was great and I can't wait to play it again.

Have you played Keyflower? What did you think of it? How many players did you try it with? The game has a reputation for 3-4 being the best but supposedly it's an auction game that actually works well even with just two (I have not played it with that number myself).
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
2. Board Game: Happy Days [Average Rating:4.60 Overall Rank:14625]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
What is a game you expected to like and when you played it, it lived up to your expectations or surpassed them? (Feel free to give more than one if you're feeling plural.)
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
3. Board Game: SAD... The Game of Depression [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
What is a game you expected to like but did not? Why did it fall short of what you hoped it would be?
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
4. Board Game: AHA! [Average Rating:4.81 Unranked]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Have you agreed to try a game thinking you would not like it, and you were right? What game, and what about it could you "just tell from looking" would not be enjoyable to you?
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
5. Board Game: Surprise! [Average Rating:5.71 Unranked]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
And the final combination: what is a game that you thought you would not enjoy but it turned out to be something you liked? Why did you think it would not be fun? What about the game was interesting (or at least "not bad")?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
6. Board Game: Claustrophobia [Average Rating:7.58 Overall Rank:189]
Travis Dean
United States
Escondido
CA
flag msg tools
The Golden Camel UberBadge is a mystery. Nobody knows where it came from or how it got there.
badge
No one expects the Spanish penguin!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
3x Claustrophobia
*At the Gates of Loyang (Yucata)
Balloon Cup (Yucata)
Campaign Manager 2008 (Yucata)
*Finca (Yucata)
*Istanbul
Jaipur (Yucata)
Power Grid (Germany Map)
*Rosenkönig (Yucata)

*new to me

Nearly all of our games from McJarvis's Yucata list have wrapped up. As well as a few that a friend invited me to just yesterday, that I accepted and we played through the night.
*At the Gates of Loyang (Yucata)
Interesting game, but mostly meh. I'd play it again, especially now that I know what I'm doing.

*Finca (Yucata)
I was mostly bored with this one. I didn't explore my special tiles, though. I'll have to look into that more next play. Again, now that I know mostly what I'm doing.

Balloon Cup (Yucata)
I got crushed. Didn't even get a single trophy!

Campaign Manager 2008 (Yucata)
But at least I crushed on this one. This time as McCain. I compiled what seems to be the dominant "do action + draw a card" strategy. At one time I probably had close to 12 cards in hand.

Jaipur (Yucata)
I got crushed here.

*Rosenkönig (Yucata)
And here as well, but it didn't help that I didn't read game scoring until near the end of the game. It was a really fun game, though, and I look forward to another play. When I first read the rules, I was afraid it would be bland, but the way scoring works make the strategies much more intricate and involved. I'll have to dig deeper on this.

Only 2 games at game night this week. I showed up late, and left earlyish, though I don't know that anything got played after I left either.
Power Grid (Germany Map)
I think this was my first time playing the Germany Map. I won pretty handily. I'm finally feeling confident that I have somewhat decent, or at least acceptable strategy. I'm getting a better feel for when to buy power plants and when to pass (I used to buy a new power plant every round because this one is ever so slightly better for only $30!), so I had quite a lot of money in the end. The last turn started with me on 14, and the other 4 players on 11. 15 ends the game. So they all built up to 14 or 15. I built to 17 and was able to power 18. Also, I bought a power plant that turn, and was the only player to do so.

*Istanbul
I finally got to try out this game. I actually liked it and thought it was really neat. I won this one as well thanks to taking some of the actions before other players could. I was tempted to stockpile money to buy gems twice, thus getting 6 gems instead of the minimum 5, but if I had stalled a couple turns for that, I certainly would've lost. The only thing I don't like is the equal turns mechanism. While fair, it doesn't give a chance for anybody before you in turn order to catch up. I know, they had as many turns as you and all that, but I think of push your luck games where you have a chance to catch the player who just won. I would dislike more if all other players had an extra turn. I feel this is one I'd like to have in my collection over other games that are in my collection, and yet, I probably won't acquire it. Part of my trying to be more selective with games I add to my collection.

3x Claustrophobia
And the day after game night, I was hoping to meet a local for some Dragon Dice, but it didn't work this week, so I met with another friend for some games. We decided to play Claustrophobia, and enjoyed it so much we played the first three scenarios all in a row. I look forward to doing this again so we can get through the last three scenarios and then move onto the expansion. I've only ever gone past the first scenario with one other person, and we basically played the second scenario plus the first scenario of the expansion.

In our plays, I crushed his units in the first game. I was able to swarm quickly and early, though I had a difficult time even with 7-12 guys on the board at a time because the brutes were not allowing them to move. But once I started making ground, I steamrolled his units. Scenario 2 was much closer, I had a hard time trying to stop him. Basically, he has to find a tile towards the end of the tile stack, and have a character be alive and 'active' at the start of his turn in that room. He finally got a guy in there when he was down to 2 men, so I threw everything at that guy, bringing him down to only 5 lines of actions available. So with 2 dice on his initiative roll, he had to get a 1 (his only open line). A slightly less than 1/3 chance. He didn't get it, but he had a card to heal a line, so he won. Very close. The third scenario was similarly hard fought. It ended similarly where I brought him down to 2 units, one facing the nearly defeated Master of Souls, the other being held at bay by onslaughts of trogs. It basically came down to rolling off between the master of souls and the hero in the same room to see who would die off first. But I had the advantage of being able to draw cards to mess him up. With this, I was able to draw a card forcing his character out of the room, allowing me to attack with a massive force of trogs. But in the end, I was lucky enough to kill him when he only needed 2 more damage to win himself. Another close match.


EDIT:
Also, I meant to share a picture of my recent Print 'n' Play project. 1861: The Railways of the Russian Empire. I hope to play this in a couple weeks.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
7. Board Game: Android: Netrunner [Average Rating:7.92 Overall Rank:39]
Charlie Theel
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Android: Netrunner x5
Unpublished Prototype x5
Tumblin-Dice x4 (new to me)
Lost Legacy: The Starship x2 (new to me)
One Night Ultimate Werewolf x2
Escape: The Curse of the Temple
Love Letter
Sidibaba (new to me)


Android: Netrunner
I hadn't gotten to play this in about 4 months so I was very excited to meet up with three others and play several games. I'm a few data packs behind and they were all caught up but we're all just casual players. However, the other three all built decks based on recent tournament winners while I spent too much time trying to build a Jinteki and Shaper deck. Me being out of touch with the meta and not being aware of some of the newer tricks didn't help, but my Shaper deck in particular was somewhat weak. My Jinteki deck was pretty solid but could have used another piece of ice or two in exchange for a couple of assets. I had a lot of fun even though I played poorly.

Unpublished Prototype
Tested out my latest prototype, "The Dragon Spine", which is a fantasy game where players try to scale an ancient spire with direct conflict with each other as well as some neutral obstacles. The first playtest was with my group (a 4 player game) and went pretty well, everyone liked it and expressed interest in playing again soon. My next four playtests were all solo and things really came together with my second play as I improved things with a simple a rule change. The last few games were excellent solo and I think it will play very well next time I get it to the table with actual players.

Tumblin-Dice
After Netrunner we had about an hour and were looking for something to play. I wanted to introduce them to Thunder Alley but we didn't have the time. I suggested Tumblin-Dice as I'd heard good things. They weren't sure but I coaxed them into it and they were all very grateful. We had a blast rolling dice down the steps and by the fourth game our skill was markedly improved. Looking forward to playing this again sometime.

Lost Legacy: The Starship
I like Love Letter well enough so I was eager to try this out. Happy to see deduction take a bit heavier of a role and I enjoyed the 20 or so hands we played.

One Night Ultimate Werewolf
It's been awhile since we played this but we got in two 5 player games and had a great time. I nailed the Wolf and Tanner in the first game with 2 seconds to go and yelled for everyone to vote for the Wolf. Luckily they listened and we won. Was very awesome.

There was no Wolf in the second game and we almost lost, but we pulled it together and I put my trust in another player based solely on his word. Got lucky.

Escape: Curse of the Temple
I've played Escape with this group many times but we haven't gotten in many plays of the Quests expansion yet. This was our second time trying that expansion and I'm kind of leaning towards it being my last expansion with this game. We mix in pretty much everything from Illusions and Quests which is about the right difficulty, the only problem is refreshing everyone on what the tiles do in between plays (which can be months) and setup is longer with the Quest Tiles.

Sidibaba
This is a cool game that's very fragile. I've had it on my shelf for months but never gotten to try it. We gave it a go and the group liked it. There were a couple of arguments as a player didn't agree to proceed unless he was put near the front but the group was able to roll with the semi-cooperative nature and get into it. They said they wanted to play it again so I'll be hanging onto this.


On My Mind

GenCon! My first ever, leaving Thursday morning with a group of 3 others and very excited. No idea what I will be doing but I'm hoping to get a lot of games played over the weekend.

Star Wars: Armada. C'mon! Goddammit. Need to win the lottery so I can afford this and X-Wing.

Just watched "Out Of The Furnace" on Netflix. Pretty good, featured Christian Bale, Casey Affleck, and Woody Harrelson. Enjoyed it, although it wasn't fantastic.

Jack White's new album, "Lazaretto", is phenomenal. Enjoying it as much as his first solo work "Blunderbuss".
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
8. Board Game: 1846: The Race for the Midwest [Average Rating:8.07 Overall Rank:553]
Dave K
United States
Austin
Texas
flag msg tools
Love 'em even if a few games get scuttled from time to time.
badge
Meow.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Another week of solid gaming with a new 18XX being a highlight.

---

New:

1846: The Race for the Midwest
Walnut Grove
At the Gates of Loyang
IOTA
League of Six

Repeat:

Northern Pacific
Medici
Dominion (specifically, Dominion: Hinterlands)
Ascension: Storm of Souls and Ascension: Immortal Heroes (on iOS)

---

Thinking about:

More 18XXes, as finally getting to play one made me want to play MOAR rather than satisfying me.

Chicago Express - we talked about it a lot at game the other day and I have only played it once, so want to try it again.

Age of Steam - similar to CE above, we talked about it and it's making me want to play again. I also have a bajillion unplayed maps, which needs to be addressed.

Diablo 3 - the PS4 local co-op enabled version comes out soon, am looking forward to trying that with my wife.

---

Thoughts:


1846 was great. I love the variable setup and the balanced private companies. Since I haven't played a partial capitalization-using one in a while I got a little overeager and tried starting two companies turn one... aaaand it didn't work very well. Another player did the same and it kind of was a dud for him too. As always I came away with a list of "next time I will do _____ differently" things and want to try it again.


Walnut Grove was very quick and puzzly. The fast playtime is a big part of the appeal - if it took longer I'd probably say "why bother with this over Agricola?," but considering it can be done in 30 mins or so with 2 it's staying for now.


Northern Pacific is still fantastic and one of the best games you can get in a short timespan. It's too bad it has such limited distribution (it's a Winsome title), as I think a lot of people would enjoy it.


Iota is neat and the box (tin) is truly tiny. You can get it online for $7 or so and it's definitely worth that.


League of Six unfortunately was a disappointment for me. I like the area picking / bidding part a lot. "I'll give you three guards to go away." "No, I'll give you five to go away." That part was really fun. The row selection and gem filling in felt arbitrary and I didn't like it much at all, and since that's half the game... this one just isn't for me. Bad no, just not really for me.


I had quite a bit of fun with At the Gates of Loyang. It's not at the top of my Rosenberg list but I will play again for sure. The game seems like it encourages trying to get lots of plots and regular customers over other strategies, but since I've only played it once, I need more experience before claiming that with certainty. laugh

Ascension on iPad continues to be a great way to play. Need a quick game before bed? Done.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
9. Board Game: Province [Average Rating:6.38 Overall Rank:2312]
James Keith
United States
Oakland
California
flag msg tools
"Watch, but do not govern; stop war, but do not wage it; protect, but do not control; and first, survive!" - Cordwainer Smith
badge
"So long, play actor!"
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
New Games

BasketBoss x1
Province x2
BraveRats x3
Legendary: Dark City x1
Fleet: Crab Meeples x2
Fleet: House Boat x1
Fleet: Salmon License x1
Fleet: Salvage Yard Licenses x1

Old Games

Cockroach Poker x1
Tricked-Out Hero x1
Little Devils x1
Gauss x1
Cubist x1
Saint Petersburg (with Saint Petersburg: New Society & Banquet Expansion) x1
Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game x1
Fleet (with Fleet: Arctic Bounty) x2

I got back in touch with my regular gaming partner after he passed his quals for grad school. We celebrated with some new games and lots and lots of Fleet.

Tuesday saw me trying BasketBoss for the first time, a particular favorite of our game night organizer. The theme doesn't do anything for me, but it's a partly decent auction game that remains very euro-y at it core. One thing I was not fond of was the "you get 50% of your money extra during earnings" ability from the catch up pool that seemed to exist mostly as weak punishment for the leading player (at least in terms of comparison to every. single. other ability there). I also wasn't a fan of how the game seemed to hinge on the final round, and how I was effectively cut out of it by coming in first in the penultimate one. I don't really want to play this game again.

Province packed a surprising amount of game into its 2p micro-game framework. There's a tiny little building/tech tree with a small bit of engine building and a wee little rondel that supplies most of the hard decisions. It's really quite good for what it is with strategic options being different enough from game to game that it may end up lasting far more plays than I had originally expected. That said, the randomized goal tiles felt a little bit swingy, and none of our games were particularly close. I definitely want to play this some more to see if holds up, but for the time being color me pleasantly surprised.

I picked up a copy of BraveRats, being a fan of Seiji Kanai and hearing good things about it. It's basically two-player Love Letter, though that's a bit of a simplification. There's some great double-think and it fits it's timeframe very well; it can be played in a few minutes and is very conducive to stringing multiple plays in a row. If you aren't a fan of Love Letter, this probably won't do much for you, but for me it worked very well for what it is.

I was marginally entertained by Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game the first time I played it, but my regular gaming partner is a big fan and invested in some of the expansions, so I got to try it with Legendary: Dark City on Sunday. True to how he described it, it included some really tough villains, one of whom made our lives miserable as waves upon waves of Doombots and MLF members filled the city. It still feels a little Thunderstone-y as getting poor combinations of hero cards is often the difference between victory and defeat, and I'm still not entirely sold on the semi-coop nature of it. We ended up playing full co-op and it seemed to improve the game, if not make it a bit bland. It's not a game I'll ask for, but it's pleasant enough.

And finally, we got some good games of Fleet in with the Fleet: Arctic Bounty expansion and some new expansion stuff. The Crab Meeples seem to exist primarily as additional scoring avenues for multi-player games, and as such didn't seem all that exciting in a 2p game (though they did have a funky anti-synergy with the Swordfish licences, which made for some fun choices). I keep putting Dock cards out in the games we play, but we always seem to forget about them: I only used the House Boat a few times in a single game, but it provided a nice cash infusion for when I was short on cards.

The Salmon Licence was a juggernaut in expanding ship capacities, handily winning my friend the first game (though it didn't help that didn't fight him for the licenses when they came up), but the Salvage Yard was the real game changer. Being able to turn a single card into 2 or 3 others (based on the coin value of the card you discarded) gave an amazing amount of flexibility in a usually very tight game. The game ended up being a lot closer as we both fought for and won a Salvage Yard apiece, though I came out on top with a Shrimp/Swordfish/Cod combo that snowballed into me getting all the Shrimp licences.

Fleet remains one of my favorite games, in that it's a very pleasing medium-weight engine builder that offers just the right amount of decisions for it's timeframe. It's got the same money-management aspect as Saint Petersburg in having the "spending money on this thing now means I can't spend money on this other thing later" thing, though it's significantly less brutal (the one play of St. Pete was a 2p game where I conceded a few rounds in when it became clear that only having access to a Woodcutter and New Farmer in the first round put me on the money back foot that would last the entire game). The Fleet expansion and all the extra promo stuff really add some nice variety, though it does make it a bit looser at the joints (which really isn't saying much given that the base game snaps together so snugly). Now if only the expansion didn't so drastically increase the setup/tear-down time!
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
10. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.02 Overall Rank:17]
Grace P.
United States
Turlock
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Acquire 1
Agricola 1
Call to Glory 1
Can't Stop 1
Ticket to Ride: Europe 1

Nothing new this week, but I did get to play things I hadn't played in awhile.
- Acquire - 1 year, 8 months
- Agricola - 8 months
- Can't Stop - almost 1 year
- TtR: Europe - 3 years

Edit: Forgot to mention I'll be traveling to Indianapolis for Gen Con this week! I haven't decided whether or not to inundate my Facebook with pictures of game booths and components in display cases.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
11. Board Game: Power Grid [Average Rating:7.91 Overall Rank:29]
Matt C
United States
Ypsilanti
MI
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This week we had a new member join our group. She's just getting into the hobby, so we decided not to throw Agricola at her the first week. Instead, we played:

Dominion: Prosperity
Power Grid
Suburbia
Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age

This was my first time playing Dominion: Prosperity. I thought the cards were much improved over the base cards and generally improved the game. Our particular setup had a ton of +action cards in it, which combined with Kings Court made it a very interesting game.


For Power Grid, I continued with the strategy I've been implementing lately: buying power plants is always more important than expanding your network. Going in to the sixth round I think I was still sitting on only two or three towns. However, I was able to buy cheaper fuel, and caught up when people did not want to bump into the second age anyway. In the end, I was the only person who could power more than 13 cities, making it an easy win.


I had not played Suburbia in a few weeks, so I thoroughly enjoyed playing it this time. I managed to build an entire city almost exclusively using the gray civic tiles, only placing a single green and blue tile. For this particular match I did a much better job of watching what others needed and trashing them when necessary. This elicited very strong remarks from Adam, who is usually a very graceful winner/loser. I won this by about 40 points.


Finally, I actually got RttA to the table for the first time. We only played 3 players, and after a quick overview I think everyone picked it up relatively easily. I had not realized that everyone got to finish their round at the end, so when I ended it I actually came in last place. Whoops.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
12. Family: GIPF Project
Mc Jarvis
United States
Arlington
Virginia
flag msg tools
I speak to improve upon the cacophony.
badge
This heart is meant to convince you that I feel.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
ZÈRTZ 3
PÜNCT 1
YINSH 1

It's been a while, and these are the only boardgames I've played in the last few weeks. I arranged to play 2-player games on Thursday nights with a friend, and last Thursday was our first meetup. He's interested in getting to know abstracts better, which dovetails nicely with all those two player abstracts I got in a Mafia Secret Santa a year+ ago. This pleases me, as the games have just been on the shelf staring at me, begging to be played.

Surprisingly, PUNCT was the most difficult to wrap my head around. Yinsh and Zertz both have more immediately obvious tactical choices, whereas the power of placing pieces in different locations in PUNT is not as obvious. By the end of the game I decided that there is more power in being closer to making your connection than in pinning opponent's pieces, so I won by recklessly expanding by network across the map. Every piece I played put me three notches closer to victory, and at best my opponent could cover up maybe two of those notches with a blocking move.

I can't wait to try this stuff out again. I think Zertz was the favorite of the night, though this may be just because I'm getting tired of Yinsh. My problem with Yinsh is that games seem to be very samey--- players control a side of the board while trying to disrupt the other person. This makes games feel very familiar every time I play, whereas Zertz still has a new feeling to it, with interesting tactical choices being presented each game.

-----
Non-boardgamming News

So I haven't been boardgaming. What have I been doing?

League of Legends
Well, for starters I've been playing a bunch of League of Legends. What started off as a way to play games with my best friend from college has turned into the way I blow off steam after work. Since I'm still under level 30, I'm mostly playing bot games--- but I have worked up to the point where I own three champions and consider them my go-to champs: Malphite, Ashe, and Xerath.

Skyrim
When friends aren't around and I'm feeling more contemplative, I'm playing Skyrim. I'm pacing myself, though: whenever I sense that I'm trying to rush through the game by simply walking a long distance to do some juicy quest first, I quit the game for the night. I think the game won't work unless I'm immersed in it. One of the things I'm really pleased with in the game is how beautiful the world is. When I walk from place to place, I find myself enjoying it almost as much as a walk in the real world. (except, you know: I don't get any exercise, so it's bad for me. That makes things better.)

Magic: The Gathering
I went on a trip to Indiana for a week and brought my nephew to a comic book store, thinking he'd like some Spiderman comics. When we got to the cash register he pointed at mtg packs and said, "What's Magic?". Once the general laughing in the store died down, I asked him what he'd prefer as a gift, and he stuck with Magic as a desired item. So I bought him a starter kit.

On teaching him the game, I realized how much I miss the game. Around fifteen years ago I was a highly ranked player, and when my dad was in a car wreck I very suddenly quit the game to attend to other things. I never really looked back until now, but I would say that magic is all I did from sixth grade until I was a senior in HS, so it's a pretty decent chunk of my life.

So far, my re-entry into the game has mostly entailed me buying a starter pack(for land), then pausing while I read/memorize cards. Every night I've been going to sleep reading cards from the most recent set...I'm guessing I'll be ready for Standard tournaments in about three months. I already have some rough outlines for decks, but it's a very difficult card pool compared to what I'm used to. I'm 99% sure there are no major combos in the cardset, which probably explains the lack of a banned list. Wizards must have gotten much better at stopping power decks, because none of the usual suspects for abuse are there: very little redirected damage, uncapped card draws, unnatural mana growth, workarounds for casting big stuff, etc. My best guess is that the current environment is all about cost-efficient creatures and removal, and likely extends beyond the 3-4 turn games that were common in T2 back in my day.

Golf
Not the geek activity, but the sport. I've been going to driving ranges, mostly because unplugged activities tend to help me blow off stress. There's something about having the sun on your back, birds whistling in the distance, and a cool Saturday morning breeze that helps me forget that I just hit the ball about fifteen feet and should be embarrassed.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
13. Board Game: Suburbia Inc [Average Rating:8.04 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.04 Unranked]
Robin Levins
United States
Round Rock
Texas
flag msg tools
Rolling dice and taking grains!
badge
Rolling dice and taking grains!
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
League of Six: Loyal Retinue
Medici
Suburbia Inc x3
Race for the Galaxy: The Brink of War x2

Not a whole lot this week. Kristen and I finished our second game on our 10x10 challenge with three games of Suburbia Inc, and added a few more with RftG.

I also played League of Six: Loyal Retinue with a group that I thought would love it, but it fell quite flat. I'm not sure why - I know it's not for everyone, but I thought it'd be a good fit for the group, and I was not right. I wonder if some AP from a few players slowed the game down too much (it ended up taking almost 2.5 hours, in what should be playable in 1.5 hours), but it may just not be their cup of tea. Oh well. We followed up with Medici which also took a while (1.5 hours), but it was good to play again.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
14. Board Game: Space Alert [Average Rating:7.49 Overall Rank:149]
Paul S
United Kingdom
Leeds
West Yorks
flag msg tools
DARK IN HERE, ISN'T IT?
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
More alien-zapping goodness this week. We're on a roll - though utterly unable to win. I think we need try this sober-er.

So:

Space Alert x2

One Night Ultimate Werewolf x3


ONUW was just the bees knees. I was insomniac in games 1 and 3, and not swapped, either go. We managed to work out the group in 2 out of 3 games, and the consensus is that we're all getting better at working out what's what. Which means more early lies are kicking in (since what's the point, if the whole thing is a logic puzzle?!) and that just improves the game no end. And the final game boiled down to a lucky drunk who turned into a Werewolf who ate the lot of us. Still smiling about that one.

4p x 3 games = more please. Loved it.

Sadly work & RL have conspired to mean nothing else games-wise this week, though I am enjoying reading some rare-for-me non-fiction in readiness for Fire in the Lake and getting excited about Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game which with luck lands in the next week or 2.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.