GCL Gelato 158 - Obscurity
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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What is a Geek Chat League?

A Geek Chat League is a weekly discussion-group format for people who love gaming and enjoy talking about games. It is intended to foster depth and familiarity, producing engaging content and worthwhile interaction. Members get to know one another, establish shared interests, and generally develop a friendly and productive environment.

Of necessity, each division of GCL is kept relatively small (typically between 12-16 members, though individual divisions may incline one way or the other). A tight-knit discussion group tends to function more smoothly than a free-for-all. It allows individuals to be heard and understood, and for each participant to keep up and enjoy multiple topics as the week progresses. The format is geeklist-based, and lists are not published to the BGG front page.

Policy: If you're a lurker or have otherwise discovered GCL Gelato, feel free to read along with us and see what the members have to say on everything under the sun. If you have a constructive comment or something else you think would add to the discussion, consider posting it — if it's helpful, respectful, and polite to the discussion group as a whole, as well as to its individual members.

This week:
Obscurity


The Famous:

leroy 43 (Roger)

The Forgotten:

ad79 (Stig)
alex352 (Alex)
cmontgo2 (Chris)
Cole Wehrle (Cole)
cscottk (Skippen) ***time to get ready for next week***
eapeas (Edward & Amanda)
Farsol (Patrick)
leroy43 (Roger)
Jacovis (Jacob)
jtakagi (Jonathan)
Lil Red Head (Nikki)
Neil Thomson (Neil)
oeolycus (Dan)
PzVIE (Ron)
tommynomad (T. Nomad)
wifwendell (Wendell)
wizardless (Mark)

*** = Next Week
Next up Skippen!

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1. Board Game: Dictum: The Latin Rummy Card Game [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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This we're going to explore "Obscurity."

As members of a GCL, we find ourselves within a niche within a niche (within a niche). How has the GCL changed the way you interact with BGG? The hobby? Has it widened your tastes or narrowed your interests?
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2. Board Game: Korea: The Forgotten War [Average Rating:8.11 Overall Rank:2316]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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History has a way of aggressively simplifying experience. Certain events take on huge importance while others (most) fade in our collective memories.

What is your favorite obscure period? Are there any conflicts and situations that you feel demand a game, a book, a high-budget film?

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3. Board Game: Schoko & Co. [Average Rating:6.65 Overall Rank:3304]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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One of my favorite things about my Austin gaming friends is their penchant for weird games. There's a high appreciation for the pre-Catan days of gaming. The designs are always a little rough, but there's a kind of raw brilliance that I find intoxicating.

What are some of your favorite obscure games?
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4. Board Game: Hungry Hungry Hipsters [Average Rating:6.19 Overall Rank:12958]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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I would guess that, by now, it's become apparent that we're a deeply eclectic set of folks.

So, carrying on this theme, let's share some music. For those of you that are always searching for new music, have you had any recent discoveries? Are there any hidden gems out there?

Bonus question: How do you do that exploring? Tell us your secrets!
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5. Board Game: Scene It? Movie [Average Rating:5.53 Overall Rank:13685] [Average Rating:5.53 Unranked]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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Okay, same as above, but let's talk movies.

What was last year's most under-apperciated flick? Are there any classic movies that have fallen by the wayside and are in dire need of rescuing?
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6. Board Game: Biblios [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:298]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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Books?
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7. Board Game: Legacy: The Testament of Duke de Crecy [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:555]
Cole Wehrle
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St. Paul
Minnesota
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Okay, let's get philosophical for a moment.

In everyday life, do you find yourself pushing against obscurity or indulging in it? Have you ever had any hopes of fame and/or fortune?
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8. Board Game: Die Macher [Average Rating:7.65 Overall Rank:193]
Cole Wehrle
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Minnesota
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x1 Die Macher
x2 Brass
x1 Metroplys

I remember last week being very busy, but, for some reason, I can't remember why...

Anyway, I did manage to eek out a few games. Cati and I played a game of Metroplys, which I thought was brilliant. What a great auction mechanism! I can see this one getting a ton of play here in the future and I may even slide it into the rotation among my new gamers group. For years the progression has been Pit & China for the first night and Citadels & Container for the second night. I can see Metroplys finding a place in that second night.

One online Brass game finished with a close set of scores and another (with fellow GCLers here) began. Cati and I also played a two player game of Brass. She really liked it, and I imagine it will be getting more play. The fact that Brass handles two so well gives it a significant leg up on AoI. I'm still conflicted about which I prefer though. That said, I might end up letting go of AoI in the coming game purge.

Finally, this Sunday I had the pleasure of sitting down to a game of Die Macher. The game went a couple hours longer than I had anticipated so I missed out on posting the list last night. Die Macher is such a wonderful game. Though it is chaotic as all hell, there are just so many fun decisions that capture party politics so well. It's also not that long if everyone stays on task and doesn't slide into AP.

The week ahead:
Phil gave me a list of small card corrections from the factory that I need to attend to. They are all ultra mundane (color-mixing, etc) but will likely take a few hours. Once that's through I *think* the game will go into the queue for production. The whole thing is making me a little antsy and I'm debating scheduling another playtest just to make sure everything is fine. Sidenote: development is nerve-wracking.

Outside of that it's just dissertation, dissertation, dissertation.
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9. Board Game: Fire As She Bears! (second edition) [Average Rating:6.74 Unranked]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Weekend Round-Up

This past week, these games were played face-to-face:
Fire as She Bears x 1
Altar of Freedom x 2

This past week, these games started:
None.

This past week (through date of posting), these games continued:
Burnside Takes Command, Scenario 2 v. Carsten (100-Game-Play Challenge!)
Space Empires 4X v. 4-Player (GCL Gelato!)
Stonewall Jackson's Way II, Scenario 6 v. Patrick (Advanced Game!)
GCACW: Atlanta is Ours, Scenario 1 v. Scott (Playtest!)
GCACW: Atlanta is Ours, Scenario 2 v. Patrick (Playtest!)
GCACW: Atlanta is Ours, Scenario 3 v. Carsten (Playtest!)
The Great Invasion: Gettysburg v. Judd
1830: The Coalfields v. 5-Player (GCL Gelato!)

This past week, these games concluded:
None.

This past week, these games/accessories were acquired:
1914: Serbien Muss Sterbien
Space Asteroids for Star Wars Amada
10mm Miniature Buildings for Crossfire

This week, these games are on my radar:
None.

This past week, these interesting things happened in my games and my life:

1 ---> Solitaire Gaming / Miniatures Painting.

(a) Crossfire Miniatures Painting. German units bases are painted, only flocking left and a sepia-toned wash. Maybe a quick light-brown wash, but I'm not sure.

(b) Next Steps. I still intend to move on to the Americans, next. Then terrain. My date for completion is way, way, off (as usual). When my Star Wars: Armada set arrives I will be taking a hiatus to paint the TIE and X-Wing squadrons - which is easily two-nights or more worth of work if I work very diligently . . . and you know by now that that is not my modus operandi.

2 ---> Family. My wife and I made our plans for our Memorial Day party this week. We haven't had one for a three years, and will be nice have all our friends, family, and acquaintances over for a visit. No gaming, though. We're expecting about 80 people.

3 ---> On-Going PBEM Game Notes. 1830: The Coalfields has seen Dan start to pull away from the herd - though Ron and I are making an attempt to stay close. The next Stock Round will be interesting, I think. I still think I'm headed for bankruptcy soon, but we will see. Space Empires 4X this week consisted of Alex and Stig continuing their battle, and it appears the Alex is pulling out, conceding defeat for the time being. I've pretty much been too busy to actually want to sit down and do my GCACW turns (and this game).

4 ---> Atlanta is Ours! Holding off on further reports on these games, but I hope to get to them tomorrow or Wednesday.

5 ---> Legal Work. I have been diligently getting my cases organized, and this has led to me not having the desire or energy to get to my two-player PBEM games.

6 ---> Little Wars I made my way up to Little Wars this year in St. Charles, Illinois - about an hour drive from my home. It was a fun event. I didn't get a lot of games played because I didn't stay at the hotel. I drove up for 8 hours on Saturday and 4 hours on Sunday. I played As She Bears - an age of sail game that was a fun little fight, but a system that I didn't feel was superior to the other age of sail games I own. It was fun though, with a good group of players. We pounded away at each other and the battle - after all the effort - ended in a draw. I also played two games of Altar of Freedom - a new American Civil War miniatures game using a grand-scale so that an entire battle can be found on a single table in an afternoon or a day. I enjoyed both games, and I have to tip my hat to the game's judge, Yaro, who ran a really excellent teaching game and he wasn't afraid to mix things up from game to game to keep it interesting. After test-driving the rules, I like them but think they probably ought to be tweaked. The game had a really interesting mechanic whereby you have a pool of Priority Points which you assign to your units. Higher priority units move before lower priority ones, but there is a turn clock, too. If the clock runs out, your lower priority units may not have a chance to move. The player with the initiative "controls the clock" and has a choice from activation to activation on how much time is taken off the clock. This allows the player with initiative to slow down time to allow him to move more units, or speed up time so that fewer units are moved. I would play again, but I'm not sure I'll buy completely into the system. I have too much on my plate already. While at the convention, I also picked up some 10mm buildings for my Crossfire game . . . a couple of bridges, some entrenchments, a bunker, and about 10 European-style buildings. But that's more stuff to paint! My wife was a great sport both days, taking care of the kids so that I could have time off to myself.

Edits: None.
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Ron
Austria
Vienna
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Game Week

 8   1853
 10   1880: China
 8   Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game x2
 10   Feudality
 7   Las Vegas
 7   NichtLustig: Fäkalini x2
 N/A   Unpublished Prototype

We had a scheduled 18xx night on Friday and I choose 1853 to be the game. I haven't played that one in a long time and also, I was a little disappointed by the new Mayfair/Lookout edition, as it contains not enough standard tiles of metric track IMHO. So I pulled out my old Hartland copy and threw in both expansion sets. The guys played the MiK2 card expansion for the first time, and although it feels a little strange to have a luck element in an 18xx game, it nevertheless was considered to be a great game by all. If you don't know what I'm talking about, I wrote a little review about that specfic expansion on the following Sunday, to be found here: The 1853 Card Game or "what the hell is that stupid luck element doing in my favorite game series?"

After that, Lonny Orgler pulled out a new prototype of his, although he asked me not to talk much about it. Not much means I can say it's a card game and it has 18xx as a theme. Although that one still needs a lot of work! We urged Lonny to continue his efforts on 18CZ, as I really want to see this one published!

The evening ended with two playings of NichtLustig: Fäkalini. An always welcomed little dice game.

Also, our PBEM 1880: China game ended. It was more or less some kind of final test for the RAILS program in the version 1.09 and the programmers looked into it (and found an error with the calculation of the 6E trains). 1880 is such a clever design; however, I barely managed to finish 3rd place (out of 4).

On Saturday Sascha & Claudia, two friends of us, came over and we played scenario 2 and 3 of Dungeons & Dragons: Wrath of Ashardalon Board Game. I really like that game - it's so simple but still cleverly designed. I already have all three games in the series, but now I wonder if I should get the new one also, Dungeons & Dragons: Temple of Elemental Evil Board Game ... it would be just more of the same, wouldn't it? And it's a stupid big box also. But it looks so cool ... help me out here please:

Poll: Aaargh ... they really published a fourth game in that series!
Should Dungeons & Dragons: Temple of Elemental Evil Board Game be added to PzVIE's game collection?
Yes
No
Why don't you leave me alone with your stupid first world problems?
      6 answers
Poll created by PzVIE


The game night continued with a game of Feudality on Sascha's request. I love that little Tom Wham gem, but Andrea isn't a huge fan of it. Ok, at least, it doesn't took too long to play.

Traditionally, we end with a dice game and we choose Las Vegas. I also used parts of the expansion set, which consists basically of a couple of unnessessary add-ons for an otherwise really good game.



The rest of the week was more or less uneventful and no new games entered my Gaming Dungeon ...

I had an appointment with my dentist yesterday and next Monday will see the final session and if everything goes as planned, I should be back at full bite force afterwards. I immediately organized a steak grill party the next Saturday. meeple

Hope you all had a fine week too!
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11. Board Game: Pax Pamir [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:1055]
T. Nomad
Netherlands
Den Bosch
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This Week


My Gents' Club met last Thursday, and instead of playing a monster euro as is our wont, we opted for medium-sized games. I lost all three, but had good fun playing:


 8   Samurai
 7   Modern Art x2

I usually do quite well at Samurai, but took solace in the fact that our enfant terrible and talented cartoonist (https://www.facebook.com/williamjosephleitzman?fref=ts) wiped the floor with all 3 of us.

PBEM continues with two twilight games of 1989 and looks to be augmented this week by Cuba Libre.

A little poem about Acquisitions
My only new game purchase of the year,
Pax Pamir.
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12. Board Game: Amun-Re [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:261]
Jonathan Takagi
United States
San Marcos
California
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I have a very slow week. I am the ASB advisor at the high school where I work, so I had to supervise all the setup and execution of our prom, which monopolized my time.




 7   Amun-Re - I enjoyed playing it, but this needs to be a 45 minute game.
 9   Modern Art - It's been a while. We actually ended with a tie, which is very unusual. One of the best 3-player games there is, though no one else would agree with that.
 10   Nertz
 9   One Night Ultimate Werewolf Daybreak
 N/A   Pokémon Trading Card Game
 7   Samurai

This week I am really looking forward to Dominion: Adventures and One Night Revolution.

This week I had an unusually trying experience at the local emergency room and came away with a huge appreciation for the social workers there. Their job must be incredibly frustrating. She was working on the case for 12 hours, I was only there for 6, but all of her work was completely for naught. I'm sure this is a common occurrence and it must make for an extremely difficult career.

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13. Board Game: 7 Ages [Average Rating:7.08 Overall Rank:1515]
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
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Resumed our face-to-face 7 Ages game. Awesome. In fact, I'm also starting a vassal game of it with my WIF buddies in Oregon and California...

Friday had some good games. I won A Study in Emerald game for the first time - such an interesting game. Had my first play of Liberté; i wasn't quite what I expected but it was a lot of fun, would like to play again. We had a Thunder Alley race (I finished last, alas). And a short (they are always short) game of Coup: Rebellion G54.

Also another solo run of Unconditional Surrender! Case Blue, which I really like.

PBEM games continue: 1989: Dawn of Freedom; Clash of Monarchs; Thunder Alley.
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14. Board Game: Ghost Stories [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:196]
Stig Morten
Norway
Kvernaland
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 7   Star Realms x4
Jut a good time. Not too hard on the brain. Tried it solo two handed also. Still good fun.
 N/A   Castles of Mad King Ludwig
3 player game. Completed a blue room and put 2 400 rooms on the deck. Turned out I had the bonuscard for 450 rooms. That was not why I lost, but it sure doesn't help. A cool game with more players.
 N/A   Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42
Lost as Russians in the second scenario. I lost the objective hex on the third turn and that swung the scenario in the Germans favour. No chance for me after that. A cool game, which moves it up my wishlist as the solo expansion might actually show up this side of my retirement.
 N/A   Deus
3-player game. Quite an ok game. Not always easy to know what to do, but I guess it can be better with repeat plays. GOt second.
 8   Flash Point: Fire Rescue A sologame. Lost to collapse.
 8   Formula D 10-car sologame in my ongoing season. Raced on ELkhart Lake or Road America as it is also known. Fun track.
 N/A   Ghost Stories Tried this with Ingmar. Really fun game. Lost really fast on normal mode.

Other than that the week resolved around hospital visits and checkups. No answers yet, but already scheduled more checkups.
Happy to see things happen, but still lots of uncertainty.

Ordered Formula D: Circuits 6 – Austin & Nevada Ride as the Nevada track looked really fun.

Also looking at PitchCar. I like it and my kids likde it too when I borrowed a friends copy.
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15. Board Game: Twilight Struggle [Average Rating:8.34 Overall Rank:5]
"L'état, c'est moi."
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Vancouver
BC
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This is the week that was:
 10   Twilight Struggle
 6   Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age

Only two games. One was the TS game where Dan just schooled me as the Soviets. I could not get a die roll to go my way and every time I had something going or a plan, Dan seemed to have the exact card to spoil my plans. Curses! It did make me really appreciate the work the guy did on the Chantry Games web site though. Fantastic. Play live, play by email, switch between the two.

A huge huge thumbsup

My new work schedule (8-4, used to be 9-5) means we can do our Friday night pub game again while the Kelda is making masterpieces in art class. It's grand. Roll Through the Ages was about all my brain could handle last Friday and my wife and I had a nice time building our little paper empires.



This past week (through date of posting), these games continued:
1989, Thunder Alley

This past week, these games concluded:
Nothing. All systems go. Rah rah rah!

This past week, these games/accessories were acquired:
Nada! But I did pre-order Pax Pamir and the map.

This week, these games are on my radar:
Unconditional Surrender! Case Blue. To my embarrassment I haven't even read any of the articles in my C3i, let along tried out the included Case Blue game. It's already Tuesday as I post this, so hopefully I can amend that soon!

Also Castles of Mad King Ludwig: Secrets. It was announced late last month.

This past week, these interesting things happened in my games and my life:

$$$ I do surveys for one of the big Canadian market research companies. They give you some token sum, often $1, for doing the survey and they give you x chances at the draw. Every month they have four prizes. Well, I was one of the winner for April! I won the big prize! Of course, it coincided with the renewal of our insurance policy. Easy come, easy go.

Speaking of insurance, we of course had our little flood last November. So of course both our insurances went up. I'm glad we were covered, don't get me wrong, but good grief. Double digit % increases on both policies. And of course they're both due now.

The Kelda had her birthday party on the weekend. She had five friends over, and the theme was a cross between Anne of Green Gables and Murdoch Mysteries. They decorated their own sun hats, made beeswax candles, clothespin dolls, pulled taffy, had three legged races and played blind man's bluff, and last but not least they had a live action game of Clue where the murder weapons included a broccoli smoothie, a song stuck in your head, and an angry bear. A good time was had by all, but my wife and I are still recovering. In a good way.
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