ConCoon 1 - A Short Solo Convention
Jeff Coon
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In a last-mintue decision, my wife decided to take our son to her parents for the weekend, so I'm home alone as a bachelor. It's rare that I get more than a few hours in a row at home, so it's time for ConCoon 1, my first ever solitaire gaming convention!

I'll be tracking games (mostly) as they get played here.
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1. Board Game: Arkham Horror [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:239] [Average Rating:7.31 Unranked]
Jeff Coon
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Saturday Morning - Arkham Horror

The day got off to a late start, as I just got back from a business trip late last night. After walking the dogs and having some breakfast, I broke out Arkham Horror with the Kingsport Horror expansion. This game is part of my 2015 Solitaire Goals. Unfortunately, I set the goal for "Beat 4 different Ancient Ones", meaning I'd likely have to play 8 games in 2015. Yikes! So I gave myself a choice of 2 random GOOs, and a choice between 3 out of 6 random investigators. I tried to pick the best investigators possible, against the easier of the Ancient Ones.

I would up with Carolyn Fern, Mandy Thompson, and Ashcan Pete against Shub-Niggurath. Shub makes every monster have an extra point of toughness during play. In the final battle, he makes you pass Sneak checks or lose monster trophies, so killing monsters and having a high Sneak are important. He's also Physically Immune, so magic items are a high priority.



Things started well, with all 3 investigators picking up some good items. I found the Map of Arkham and Motorcycle for some extra movement. Ashcan Pete wound up with one of them, and along with his Sneak skill and a Find Gate spell, he was posed to be my best gate sealer, so he picked up as many clues as possible.

Mandy Thompson wound up with a few common weapons, and a magic sword around midgame. Carolyn Fern mostly wandered around Kingsport, trying to keep the rifts at bay while the other two investigators tackled the main objectives.

During the midgame, things started to get out of hand. Ashcan Pete had 13 clue tokens when hitting the outer world, but wound up spending 6 of them rerolling a skill check to avoid a nasty monster. Mandy Thompson went into the outer worlds with 6 clues and came back with only 3, so a few gates had to be closed instead of sealed.

Back-to-back monster surges clogged up the board with monsters, making it difficult to fill back up on clues. Then an extra doom token was added to the track after 2 straight new gates, and suddenly the doom track was filling up quickly.



With only two empty spaces on Shub's doom track, and only two gates sealed, I realized it was a lost cause, and did what I could to prepare for the final battle. I needed a good magical weapon for Ashcan, who had no way of dealing damage to Shub. With $6 he visited the Curiosity Shoppe and found the Golden Sword of Y'ha Talla, a +5 magic weapon. Carolyn Fern had acquired the Spectral Razor spell, which gives +X to combat checks, where X is the number of successes rolled on the spell, with a +2 casting modifier and -2 sanity check. I knew she could do good damage, since she could restore 1 point of her own sanity every turn.

On the final turn, Ashcan Pete managed to find an encounter letting him move and encounter any space on the board, which he used to head to the Church and give Mandy Thompson a Blessing for the final battle. On the next turn, a gate opened and Shub-Niggurath awakened from his slumber to devour the town of Kingsport, and only Carolyn, Mandy, and Pete stood in his way.

During the final battle, Carolyn had the Spectral Razor and just enough sanity to use it most of the fight. Mandy had a Fetch Stick (+7 magical weapon), and Pete had his Golden Sword (+5). They had managed to collect 5/5/4 monster trophies, and had 3/5/6 Sneak checks, so they had plenty of time to fight Shub. I just needed good rolling, and for all of them to stay alive long enough for the magic weapons to whitle down Shub.

In hindsight, he didn't stand a chance. With Mandy's 10 total fight (-5 for Shub), her blessing, a die reroll from the bullwhip, and her skill to let her reroll an entire combat check, she was a workhorse. At one point, she rerolled a particularly bad roll and got 5x 6's. Carolyn kept her sanity high enough to cast a spell every other turn, and Pete added a few hits in.

Shub'Niggurath went down at their well-equipped hands, and the town of Kingsport was saved.

ConCoon Tally: 1-0
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2. Board Game: Imperial Settlers [Average Rating:7.51 Overall Rank:133]
Jeff Coon
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Saturday Afternoon - Imperial Settlers

There are two things working against Imperial Settlers as a solo game:
1) I'm not a fan of "beat your score" Eurogames as solitaire games.
2) Imperial Settlers is nearing "broken" in our game group, and it may not get played again.

I was ready to throw this on the trade pile, but then I saw the Campaign Mode. Very interesting! I'm a big fan of Pocket Civ, so the idea of mixing random events with Imperial Settlers is too hard to pass up.



I've played 3 games as the Barbarians so far:

Game 1
41 points
A cakewalk. Lots of points scored during the game from action cards.
Province: Untamed Wilds
Event 1: 10-4 Monumentous Days / Excitement
Event 2: 9-5 War / Ally At War
Event 3: 4-4 Imperial Records
Achievement: Colosseum (remove upkeep cost on Untamed Wilds)

Game 2
25 points (26 cumulative)
A tougher game. Imperial Records made me start with no Faction cards. Barely survived with 8 locations vs. 6.
Quest Completed: 9-5 (Begin next game with 2 deals in play)
Province: Rich Lands (+1 Wood production)
Event 1: 10-8 Monumentous Day / Excitement
Event 2: 7-7 Illness / Quarantine (1 gold instead of food for deal)
Event 3: 1-5 Unexpected Discovery / Ancient Library (+5 VP this game, 4 workers for +15 VP)
Achievement: None

Game 3
63 points (89 cumulative)
Wow. Starting with 2 deals was crazy. Should have been crazier, but I missed my +1 wood production from Rich Lands
Quest Completed: 1-5 (+15 VP)
Quest Completed: 7-7 (no Border Faction penalty next game)
Province: Stony Mountains (next game +3 starting stone)
Achievement: Free Trade (+1 Gold Production)


I'm going to put the Barbarians on pause, as I see this lasting several more games. I've got +1 Wood and +1 Gold production, with only 1 Wood Upkeep and 5VP of Control Cost. It's unlikely I wouldn't be able to play at least 2-3 more games at this rate.

This is a fun distraction, but I'm still not super-thrilled to be playing a Euro solitaire. I keep thinking I'd rather be playing something on the iPad much quicker (Lords of Waterdeep or Le Havre) Still, Imperial Settlers may have gotten a stay of execution for another few weeks.

ConCoon Tally: 2-0
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3. Board Game: Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game [Average Rating:6.99 Overall Rank:534]
Jeff Coon
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Saturday Evening - Space Hulk Death Angel

Space Hulk: Death Angel – The Card Game was a gift from my Secret Soloist this year. I've played a couple of times as multi-player, but this was my first time trying solo.

I randomly drew the Grey, Yellow, and Green marines, setup the formation, and started. Things began okay enough, with extra spawns on the left of the formation. I had a few hits that kept things under control, and thanks to the Grey Marines, I was able to travel to the 2nd location card early.

Things went downhill quickly when two major spawns happened. Brother Claudio used his special ability to kill 3 genestealers, but fate wasn't with the Space Marines that day, and he went down in a blaze of glory.

After that, a chaotic event caused my marines to swap facing, leaving many of them flanked and unable to use support checks. Things snowballed out of control, and I wasn't able to travel to the 3rd location card.

ConCoon Tally: 2-1
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4. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game [Average Rating:7.63 Overall Rank:107]
Jeff Coon
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Sunday Evening - Lord of the Rings Card Game (LCG)

It's been a while since I've played The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game, so I opted to start with the Passage Through Mirkwood scenario to easy things back in. I still had a Leadership / Lore deck built using Aragorn, Gloin, and Beravor, so I started quickly.

After a brief skimming of the rules, I was off. I played a couple of allies, committed Gloin to the quest, and BAM! Ungoliant's Spawn. First card drawn. I wound up taking some serious damage right away, and wasn't able to recover. Things went quickly downhill, and I think I played my worst game ever.

It's still on the table, ready to go for another try in the morning.

ConCoon Tally: 2-2
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5. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game [Average Rating:7.63 Overall Rank:107]
Jeff Coon
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Sunday Evening - Lord of the Rings Card Game (LCG)

My wife made it home a little earlier than planned, so I only had time for a couple more LotR:LCG games. I think I'm ready to move on to the first cycle of expansions and do some creative deckbuilding.

Game 1
Passage Through Mirkwood
Leadership / Lore
Aragorn, Gloin, Beravor
WIN: Defeated Ungoliant's Spawn
Score: 109

Turn 1 Steward of Gondor is stupid good. After killing the initial Forest Spider, the deck kept turning up locations that were pretty easy to travel to. Celebrian's Stone on Aragorn let him contribute his 4 influence, then untap to help kill anything that came up. It was an easy stroll to the final Stage, and a Sneak Attack Gandalf killed Ungoliant's Spawn the same turn it came into play.

Game 2
Travel Down the Anduin
Leadership / Lore
Aragorn, Gloin, Beravor
LOST: 3 Dead Heroes
Score: n/a

Ouch. I cruised through the Hill Troll with a Sneak Attack / Gandalf / Ever Vigilant. (Gandalf is cheated into play, doing 4 damage, then both blocks and attacks) On the trip down the Anduin, I drew THREE Evil Storms and one The Necromancer's Reach, all of which wound up doing 1 damage to most of my heroes. I lost Beravor and Gloin, and there was no way Aragorn could survive alone. Quick game lost to the RNG.

ConCoon Final Tally: 3-3
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