What Did You Play This Week? April 24-30, 2017
Bill Kunes
United States
Cincinnati
Ohio
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With the week behind us it's time to post your week's mini-session reports and stories to answer our favorite question:

mbmbWhat did you play this week? - Edition 418


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thumbsup Don't forget to thumb the geeklist so we can keep our gaming conversation on the front page all week!

Posting a day early this week as I will be traveling and away from a computer on Monday.
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1. Board Game: Macao [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:243]
Bill Kunes
United States
Cincinnati
Ohio
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Another busy week limited plays...

Monday
1x - Forbidden Island

Island: Mutiny Towers
Roles: Diver, Navigator and Engineer
Level: Legendary
Result: We hadn't played a game over lunch in a while due to the busy schedule. To keep within the limited time we had we elevated the starting level and got to it. We were focused on a quickly sinking tower and lost track of the earth treasure tiles and saw both temples sink and lost after only securing one treasure. Doh!

Tuesday
1x - Amerigo - mb

We completed our 10th play for the 10x10 challenge with a bit of a lopsided score, 155-122. I had the building and production engine going while my wife struggled. I really like this game the more I play it, although it can feel a bit samey despite the variability in setup, cube drops and innovation tiles. I'm waiting for my wife to give me her thoughts after completing the challenge which I feel will be a bit on the meh side given she only won 1x in our 2p games.

Friday
1x - Macao

Wife pulled away about a quarter of the way into our out-of-the-dust game play of Macao. Then I finally managed to cash in on a huge payout to edge ahead and hold things off with my longer string of city markers to secure the win.

Saturday
1x - Macao


My wife leveraged her cards well, while I went for cards requiring more variety of cubes trying something different but struggled to get the combinations to line up (the gamble with this approach) and couldn't muster enough points to keep pace. She won 69-51 bringing out 2p record to 6-5 in my favor.


Managed to squeeze in a few plays this week. Next week will be another busy week so expect it to be light on gaming, but BillCon is on the horizon.

meeple Keep playing...
BK's Hardcore 10x10 in 2017 List at 54/100
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2. Board Game: Power Grid: Australia & Indian Subcontinent [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.02 Unranked]
Fernando Robert Yu
Philippines
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Friday

Pandemic: The Cure = 1 Play

Just a short soloplay in my hotel in Malaysia. I felt I was doing okay when I cured the Yellow and Black diseases but then a couple of poor cure attempts by the Scientist as well as the Medic regularly rolling hazards caused the dice to pile and snowball into a loss.


My Medic, Contingency Planner, and Scientist lose due to outbreaks at infection level 4!

Saturday

International Tabletop Day has the gang come out in force for an evening's gaming!

Dread Curse = 1 Play (Out of the Dust!)

The 3 Celino brothers and Jim were available and with Pau catching up it would a rare instance where we would be 6. We played this first while waiting for Pau and it was quick as the lone black spot was returned to the bag and no other was drawn out. This meant we all were able to cut and run when we wanted and it took a tiebreak between Keith and Kent with Keith drawing a 4 value coin versus Kent's 2 for the win.


A close game that has Keith break the tiebreak with Kent and end up the richest pirate! Keith 38 (Coins 25 Cards 13 tiebreak 4) Kent 38 (Coins 33 Cards 5 tiebreak 2) Karl 32 (Coins 25 Cards 7) Me 23 (Coins 12 Cards 11) Jim 18 (Coins 17 Cards 1)

7 Wonders = 1 Play (Out of the Dust!)

Pau arrived and we played this together with the 7 Wonders: Cities and 7 Wonders: Leaders expansions. The scores were quite close among the leaders but Pau's Science and Wonder scoring plus balance in the other categories which put him on top.


A well fought game wherein Pau's Petra comes out on top! Pau (Petra A) 71 Karl (Abu Simbel A) 67 Keith (Stonehenge A) 67 Jim (Babylon A) 63 Me (Giza B) 57 Kent (Alexandria B) 48

Ultimate Werewolf: Inquisition = 1 Play

This social deduction game was up next. Us villagers were able to deduce that Keith was a werewolf early and I also suspected Pau to be one and we managed to kill 2 wolves early, but the last 2 were scattered among the columns and this meant the Werewolves soon caught up and some poor guesses stacked the odds against us villagers as more cubes were placed on the last villagers and the bad guys were able to to vote out the last Villager meaning the last werewolf was the only survivor and the traitors win.


The werewolves in the village were almost eliminated but Keith and Pau manage to recover and it was down to the last werewolf and villager before the human is eaten and the werewolves win again!

Power Grid: Australia & Indian Subcontinent = 1 Play

Pau had to leave so the rest of us settle on this great game using the India map. Fuel resources were especially tight and with Jim causing a couple of brownouts mid and late game he managed to hold on to his lead but was in real danger of being unable to power his cities in the last round which would have made me win as I was second with 14 cities. He was just able to buy the fuel he needed though and he managed to find just enough money to end the game at 15 cities which he was able to power.


An evening full of very close games has Jim just managing to power 15 cities in India to just eke out a victory by 1 city over me! Jim 15 Me 14 Karl 13 Keith 13 Kent 9

Sunday

Masmorra: Dungeons of Arcadia = 1 Play

An alliance game with Shawn which leads to disaster as my Quan who had to rush to rescue Shawn's HobsBawm who was pinned by Skeletons near a respawn point only to have my hero fall to a Skeleton Captain his 2 Skeleton troops even though he managed to destroy them all!


My valiant Quan falls in his attempt to rescue Hobsbawm out of trouble!
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3. Board Game: The Game [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:901]
Jerry Wilkinson
United States
New Castle
Indiana
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When asking "What would Jesus do?", remember that flipping over tables and using a whip are within the realm of possibilities.
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The Game
Splendor
For Sale
11 nimmt!
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4. Board Game: Blood Rage [Average Rating:8.09 Overall Rank:20]
James Moline
United States
Tampa
FL
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Blood Rage - At this week's meetup, we played a 5 player game of Blood Rage. It was new to everyone except me, and I had only played once before. Man, I am awful at this game. I came in last by a wide margin, in part because I completely screwed up the first age. I had 3 quests in play in the first age, and I was in good position to complete all three of them, but then I screwed up the timing, and ended up failing to complete any of them. Obviously, this set back my stat progression considerably. I wasn't out of it at that point, but it really set the tone for the whole game for me. Area control has always been a board game genre that I am particularly weak in, and that plays out in Blood Rage in a very expected fashion. I still love the game, in spite of how bad I am at it. This has definitely been a hit with the game group, so I'm hoping to get it to the table regularly.
Rating: 8

Twilight Struggle - Shortest. Game. Ever. I screwed up before the game even started. I had 6 influence to put in Eastern Europe, and I spread myself too thin. In the first round, my opponent was able to put me on the defensive in Europe, and I was never able to gain ground there. I was forced to score Europe in the first round, and pretty much lost my shirt. In the second round, I had low value cards and was under the Red Scare/Purge penalty. I gained some points back when I score Asia, but then lost them again when my opponent scored the Middle East (which I had been neglecting). The third round came up again, and what did I draw? The Europe and Middle East scoring cards. I tried to shift thing in the Middle east, but a failed coup hurt my chances significantly. For my last 2 actions of the 3rd round, I had to play those scoring cards and give my opponent the 20 point victory. It was a lopsided loss for me, but even 2 cards into the game I was able to see things I should have done differently. I'm still really enjoying this game.
Rating: 7.5

Gloomhaven - On Saturday morning, I played another couple of 3 player scenarios of Gloomhaven. We replayed the first scenario with the 3 base classes we hadn't played before (I played as a the Scoundrel), and then continued onto the next scenario. We all wanted to get a feel for the different character, and also decide whether or not we liked the game before we fully committed to a party and started marking up the components. Needless to say, we will be continuing on. Our starting party will consist of a Tinker, a Cragheart (me), and a Brute. Very much looking forward to digging further into this.
Rating: 8

Troyes - Later on Saturday, I played a 3 player game of Troyes with some other friends. It was a learning game for them, and I was a little rusty and stumbled on the rules a bit. I'm pretty sure I got everything right, though, and by the second round we were playing pretty smoothly. I thought I had this one won because I felt like I was doing a better job of claiming high point spaces on activity cards. I lost in the end, though. The winner had done better of getting in-game points, and had also done much better than me with one of the characters in play (points for claiming event cards). They seemed to like the game alright. I'm not sure if they'll be clamoring to play it again soon.
Rating: 8

Broom Service - We closed out Saturday evening with a 3 player game of Broom Service. I really like this game. It's been a while since I played it, maybe because the theme is a little less appealing to some of our play groups. The game is great, though, and picking the role cards and deciding whether to go brave or cowardly is pretty much always tense. The theme of the evening continued, and I came in second in this game as well. It was good to get it to the table again.
Rating: 7.5

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5. Board Game: Traders of Osaka [Average Rating:6.87 Overall Rank:937]
Jon Enns
Canada
Herbert
Saskatchewan
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Monday

I played R-Eco with Stewart over lunch hour.




Tuesday

Stewart and I played Traders of Carthage at lunch time. I thought I would try the same designer with an even better game. Stewart liked both.




Thursday

I went to my Mom's and played Kingdomino with her and my sister Myrna. We played 3 times.




Sunday
I plan to get at least something in today. Will post in a comment later.

5 games played this week until Sunday.
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6. Board Game: Histrio [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:3091]
Joe H
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Gaming Group

On Wednesday night, I started out by teaching Danny and Wendy , a lavishly produced hand management, action selection game by Bruno Cathala and Christian Martinez with a fun theme. The game, which I found for 50% off in September and hadn't had a chance to play, played quickly and had a bit of bluffing and take that. But, it's definitely not a brain burner. In the first turn I went to the same location as Danny which meant neither of us recruited the actor there but we got a secret request. This secret request shaped my play the rest of the game as I could earn lots of points to produce a show that didn't earn the king's favour. Danny and Wendy both tangled over producing shows that most pleased the king. In the end Danny won by a fairly wide margin with me placing second.



Next, Emil joined us for Airlines Europe. Danny pushed the grey airline's stock and network up all by himself as he very early on showed a clear majority. I slowly pushed blue up hoping to get Emil to also invest in this company's routes since he had a few blue stocks out in his tableau while I held a bunch in my hand. Meanwhile, Emil was pushing oranges stock up and then laid out bunch of blue stocks into his tableau. At this point I decided to cut my losses with blue and push on black and Air Abacus. This put me into a head to head confrontation with Wendy, who also pushed on red and brown, over Air Abacus which ended up tied when the AA stock cards ran out. In the end, mine was the losing strategy. It was a tight game with Danny winning with 68 points, Wendy coming in second with 65, Emil with 62 points and me coming in last with 59 points.



Next, Wendy taught us Jeju Island, a set collection game with a mancala-style pickup and deliver mechanism. This was light and fun and certainly a game that I'd play again. Even though it was light I certainly felt tension in how I was hoping other players would move my disc to certain spots and that they wouldn't take the VP card I wanted. The game ended when all the goods tokens were removed from the board, the first time Wendy had seen the game ended this way. The game was super tight with Wendy taking the game with 24 points, Danny coming in second with 23 points, Emil landing in third with 22 points and me sliding comfortably into last place with 21 points.



Gaming with my Wife

On Friday Sharon and I had a chance to play a couple of quicker games. At her request we started with Ingenious. It was a tight game marked by a dearth of purple tiles and a board with all but one square filled (though the last two turns were academic). We were both tied with only 7 points in purple but she had 8 points for blue while I only hat 7 points on red.



Next up we played Santorini without any of the god powers. The first game was relatively quick. I got her builders "at my back" and then was able to make my way to the third level. The second game was much more epic. I'd had one of her builders locked in with one of my builders while my other builder developed what I needed to make a push for the third level safe from being capped. By the end of the game there were only a few spaces without any building. Despite the losses I think she really likes this game.



On Saturday we played Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle. Once again we played through Book 5, this time with a team of Harry and Neville. The game started out slowly as we had a couple of location tokens added early and Lucious Malfoy dinged us for that. We kept Crabbe and Goyle on the board for most of the game until we soon knew we'd be hitting Voldemort and their ability would be triggered by his. Having such an innocuous villain on the board for so long helps. In the end we defeated Voldemort with never having much more than half of the first location filled with tokens and only having been stunned once or twice each. This has been a very satisfying game for us. I'm not sure when we will move on to Book 6 as we are still having fun with Book 5.



Solo Gaming

On Tuesday I played two solo games of Cottage Garden. Game 1 wasn't too bad. I scored 70 points with Blue posting scores of 20, 6, and 4 and Orange posting scores of 20, 12, and 8. Its not too often that I score all six cubes as I try to get that 15 to 20 bump at all costs. Game 2 was worse. In this one I only managed 56 points. The blue cubes scored 20 and 12 while the Orange scored 20 and 7 points. This time I didn't even get an extra 20 scored. Still, its a light, fun puzzly game where I really enjoy setting myself up for the endgame.



On Thursday I played a game of Elder Sign...badly. I only wanted a light, short game so I chose Yig as the Ancient One. My randomly chosen team of Harvey Walters, Ashcan Pete, Sister Mary and Michael McGlenn did really poorly out of the box and the two midnight effects and locked green glyph present from the start didn't help matters. By the end of the first day I had used most of my items and failed a couple of inventions. Ashcan Pete benefits from winning adventures with unique items but we never saw one. Sister Mary was probably the one who was most effective as she didn't suffer from the midnight effects. Although I clawed my way back to make it respectable at least, the doom track soon reached 8 and all my investigators died.

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7. Board Game: Argent: The Consortium [Average Rating:7.74 Overall Rank:470]
Adam Lucas
Canada
Belleville
Ontario
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Thursday


We started with Keyflower and for some reason the owner wanted me to get out Start Player to pick first player. The winner was the person who remembered they drank chocolate milk in the last year.
I started with the winter tiles that provided points for you best resource, green dudes, and full sets of skill tiles.

For spring I had hoped to win all three of the resource generating tiles (3 of something when upgraded), but for some reason I only wound up with the one for wood. So not even a quarter of the way through the game and I think my chances of winning are shot.

In the summer I picked up the boat that allowed you to play workers of any colour and the boat that doubled your movement and building ability and that was it.

For fall I managed to get the building that turned red workers into green workers and the building that was worth ten points if upgraded using wood. I think this is when I picked up one of the moving and upgrading tiles as well.

The winter went really bad for me. I couldn't really get much for any of my winter tiles so I threw in the one that gave points for most resources. In hindsight that wasn't very good. My opponents all had a lot more green workers than I did and since I didn't think to let them fight over the green tile a lot of the final scoring tiles I couldn't bid on. I tried to win the boat that gave points for moving points and lost on the bid. I then got the tile for river tiles and one that gave points for closed loops, which netted me a whole point.

When final scoring happened the boat really helped with my score, as did upgrading my tiles, but it only placed me firmly in second.



Other game for the night was Village. I tried to work my family members to death and tried to die everywhere I could. I did get max points in the book and cleaned up in the market, but I couldn't get anyone to leave the village and I had no points in the church or the gubernatorial building. I placed in second place by about eight points.


Saturday
Tabletop Day was kind of low-key this year with just a couple of friends over in the afternoon.


The day started with Roll for the Galaxy. I got to play as the Doomed World for the first time while my double-tile was the one with the bonus money for Stocking with yellow dice. I started with developing a tech that allowed you to reassign two workers for free and followed up with a single rare goods planet. My next development was the Federation League. From this point on I pretty much just developed as much as I could. On the way I picked up a development that allowed me to reassign a worker to explore or produce (which I don't think I used) and one that allowed me to get a free yellow and white die while exploring. My opponents meanwhile were trying to produce and ship for points.

When the game ended I scored something like 32 points for developments which turned into 43 with the Federation League and I think about three points for my planet.



The next game was Argent: The Consortium. This match saw Jesca against Rikhi and Riflam. The mages were Divinity A, Mysticism A, Natural Magick A, Sorcery B, and Technomancy A. Rooms were Adventuring B, Synthesis Workshop A, Guilds B, Research Archives A, Archmage's Study B, Council Chamber A, Library B, and Infirmary A.

I started by knowing that 2nd Most Influence was in the game and thanks to my knack for not finding marks that's all I knew throughout the game. I had a hunch that Most Mana was in the game by the way Rikhi was grinding her mages into mana and I thought I would stockpile gold in case it was in the game. With mana I did fairly well for both stockpiling it and nuking one of my opponents to make sure I kept Most Research, Most Intelligence, and Most Wisdom if they were in the game. I also loaded up on Technomancy spells and was able to turn my vault cards into mana to compete with Rikhi.

On the third turn some Planar Ice Cream brought the Student Stores into play. I don't think it saw a lot of use though.

On the second last turn one opponent used the Student Stores to buy two copies of an item that provided influence and the other did something to load up on money.

When final scoring came out I did not score Second Most Influence, but I did pick up Most Mana, Most Natural Magick, Most Diversity, 2nd Most Supporters, and Most Wisdom. Naturally, one of my opponents also scored five voters and I lost due to influence.
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8. Board Game: 7 Wonders Duel [Average Rating:8.15 Overall Rank:10]
Kirk Groeneweg
United States
Clear Lake
Iowa
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I got myself back on track this week. A few more opportunities to play and with the crummy weather, took advantage of some inside time.


On Wednesday, I had my Dice Masters buddy over for a few games. I brought out my Deadpool team and he brought out the Doctor Strange team. I won the first game pretty easily, using Multiple Man and Bob pretty well. Game two he squeaked out a close one and then in game three, he clobbered me when the dice decided to not work for me. Can't wait to get together and try out another team.


At Thursday game night, only one person showed up. It was nice tho, my wife and I taught her Pandemic and played four times. She absolutely fell in love with the game and was talking about going out and buying it to play with her hubby. We started with only four epidemic cards in the first game (and won), then moved to five and eventually to six epidemic cards. We split for the night by winning twice and losing twice.


I was able to get a copy of 7 Wonders Duel on clearance at Target. It's been sitting on the shelf for a while until this weekend. My wife and I finally tired it out. We both have played 7 Wonders before, so the concepts here made sense. Wow, what a fantastic implementation for two players. We ended up playing 5 times over the weekend. She's got the edge on me, winning 3 games. I was able to pull off a scientific victory in one game by forcing my wife to take a card that made the last science I needed available to me. I can see this hitting the table often for us.


We wrapped up the week with a game of Agility. Still love this game. I was able to get one dog across the course but really struggled getting either of the other dogs moving at all. My wife moved hers across pretty steady and pulled out the win. I really struggled with the pause boxes tonight. Another great two-player game.

Have a great week everyone!
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9. Board Game: The Downfall of Pompeii [Average Rating:7.13 Overall Rank:447]
Tiago Perretto
Brazil
Curitiba
Parana
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Not many games, but some nice ones.

Tuesday
The Downfall of Pompeii x1 -- new to me
The Road to Canterbury x2
Glen More x1

Downfall was a joy to get to know. It is simple and with some take that, but is also light and fun. I tied in first.

Road to Canterbury was played twice. It proved itself again as a very good game, being smart, interactive and quick - so much so that we played twice. I won the first.

In Glen More I was lagging behind, as a friend was making good use of a tavern and a butcher. Still, in the two last rounds, I made a strong comeback, specially in the last one, when I activated the grocer, an annual fair and sold goods to the market, taking around 20 points in total, and turned the game around, winning by 3 points!


Thursday
Spyrium x1 -- new to me
Warfighter: The Tactical Special Forces Card Game x1
For Sale x1
TransAmerica x1
51st State: Master Set x1 -- new to me

Spyrium is a nicely done game - its flow is good, it gives choices and options to follow. Interaction is there, with the placement of meeples. I liked it. I was beaten badly to a income strategy.

In Warfighter we played against the middle-east milita, in a hostage rescue mission. We struggled for quite a while, but our team worked well enough and we were able to accomplish the mission in the last round, almost in the last roll possible!

For Sale and Transamerica were great as usual. I lost both.

51st State was muuuch easier to learn than I thought it would, as I had a bad experience learning it in its older version. I started with good production cards and was able to use them to great effect, leading the game all the way through the end, finishing in first, with 50 points.

And that was it!

Regards,
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10. Board Game: Tigris & Euphrates [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:70]
meepleonboard
United Kingdom
Somerset/London
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Monday



I was still out in France at the beginning of last week, sorthing out what was once my father's house but which now belongs jointly to me and my brother. On the Monday evening, after a couple of disappointments with some games that didn't quite hit the mark, Tim suggested that I put Tigris & Euphrates on the table, as he'd seen the box but we had not played it. KT only rarely plays this with me, but I cannot jettison it from my collection as I think of it as one of the very greatest games in the database...but how would it have held up after so many years of gathering dust and with all those shiny new games having taken away its table time?

It took nearly no time to explain the basic choices to my brother and then we decided to dive right in, and after only two moves the beauties of this game began to reveal themselves once more, like an oil painting having layers of grime slowly removed to display its true vibrant colours. Tim was up to speed quickly on the weakest-score-wins thing, and I referred to the two types of conflict as wars and rebellions, rather than external and internal, and we went about building our civilisations (though in Tigris you are only ever passing through a civilisation rather than owning it) and racking up those precious points. Monuments arose out of the sands of the desert, and one particularly early and brutal war saw almost half of the board disappear, leaving only gaps and monuments behind. Tim's eyes lit up, and I told him that I see Tigris as a top down set of time lapse photos of four thousand years ago. Anyway, the battle was keen and tight, Tim racking up the points for his monuments while I would sneak in and usurp his leaders at key points. This way and that ran the influence, and all four catastrophe tiles were used to eke out some kind of small advantage. At the end of an hour and a half's play of the full game we were exhausted but thrilled, and Tim had run out the victor by 22 points to 17. Two more things to mention - this worked just fine with two players, thank you very much, and it never failed to feel thematic. At the end we surveyed our wasted desert kingdoms, hauled ourselves back to the present...and Tim immediately ordered a copy for himself online.

Even after so long away from the table Tigris remains my favourite game. The simplest of decisions with the direst of repercussions, layers upon layers of clever play waiting to be discovered. I just need to try to blow the sand - sorry - dust off this masterpiece more often. Joyous!

Tuesday


After no fewer than six meetings on the Tuesday to tidy up various legal and administrative matters in a foreign language we were both pretty tired by the time we made it back to the house in the evening, so I set up Hostage Negotiator and talked Tim through a play while he made the bulk of the decisions. My nemesis Arkayne Massua was back once more, but we had him in a fairly relaxed mood at the start of the game, but we were scuppered by some dodgy dice rolling, especially some 4s that we could not alter, and then Massua went off and took some more captives. It went down to the wire but we just did not have enough time to resolve the situation in a satisfactory manner - my brother enjoyed this one as well, though.

Sunday


Back home, KT and I rounded off the week with a couple of games of Race for the Galaxy on Sunday evening, after a busy few days that had kept us away from the gaming table more than I would have liked. It is always good to come back to this evergreen classic, and even after over two hundred face to face plays we were both still playing cards that we had never added to our tableaux (you can tell I've been in France!) before. The first game was a 6-cost development fest for KT, who managed to get three of them into her empire, while I plied my Novelty goods for all they were worth. The second game was one of those slow-burners where no 6-cost developments hit the table, and I was scuppered early on by playing the Pilgrimage World in an attempt to keep up with KT. Unfortunately, when it comes to the Consume action, you are obliged to use all your powers, and that meant that I had to keep discarding my only goods for nothing until I had some other powers on board. KT played me perfectly, anticipating what I was going to choose and deliberately pushing me to Consume, keeping me on the ropes. And they say this game isn't interactive! She won both games, 45-32 in the first and 33-17 in the second.

This was a week to remind me - again - that I have some truly great games in my collection, so I should worry far, far less about clearing out the merely good and the average, also that board games are balm for daily stresses and strains.

Happy gaming!
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11. Board Game: Love Letter [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:213]
Stéphane Athimon
France
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Hi Everybody,
not much for us this week.
Just one game of Love Letter (Kanai Factory version).
My daughter prefers the illustrations of this version rather than those of the AEG Tempest version.

I won this game. This is our favorite two-player game when we have five or ten minutes to play :-)

This week we also had two 4-player games of Time's up family :-)

One of the game was Father and Son VS Mother and Daughter :-) (our older daughter was having exams in another city so she wasn't at home this week).
The first game was largely won by the boys !! (Hurray ;-) 62-58.
The second game was Parents VS Children, and we badly lost 65 - 55. You can't play against them when they are together.

Finally, we had a Skip Bo game yesterday evening which was won by my son. It was definitely his week :-)


Not much, because of a lot of time dedicated to prepare to take 190 pupils to the cinema on Tuesday 2nd May, to watch Hidden Figures. :-)

To start this week we are hesistating for a bigger game to play with 5 Players :-) we may play Spyrium, Unlock, Round House, Orléans or Puerto Rico.
We haven't played four of these games (the first four in fact), Any advice?

Have a nice gaming week.
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12. Board Game: The Quest for El Dorado [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:432]
Andreas Hellwig
Germany
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Monday:
Flash Point: Fire Rescue x2
Flash Point: Fire Rescue – Dangerous Waters x2
Arboretum x2

Tuesday:
Keyflower x2
Keyflower: Keymelequin x2
Keyflower: Key Celeste x2

Wednesday:
Antarctica x2
Antarctica: Penguin Expansion x2

Thursday:
Querbeet x2
Chase x2

Friday:
Hex x2
LineUp! x2

Saturday:
The Quest for El Dorado x2
9tka x4

Sunday:
Evolution: The Origin of Species
Splut! x2
The Quest for El Dorado x2
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13. Board Game: BANG! [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1016]
Simona Dostalova
Czech Republic
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Very good gaming week with 6 days of gaming and 18 plays of 9 games!

Monday

I bought Rhino Hero on Monday, so I wanted to try it solo to know how it played. It was a bit easier than I would like (I destroyed the building with my last wall) but I guess it will get harder playing with other adults since they will mess it up. And at least I can play it with my future kids!


Tuesday

We introduced Evolution to some new people and played 5-player game, Climate. There were a lot of carnivores but I had a nice set of uneatable species. One guy (the one focusing on carnivores) won with 80, I had 74, then 68, 57 and SO had 50.

We then proceeded to 2 5-player games of Love Letter Premium. I was terrible this time. It was probably because we played with people I didn't know well but I had a very hard time figuring out anything and I ended both games without any hearts.


Wednesday

Terraforming Mars was up on my weekly Wednesday gaming night, this time 4-player game with 1 new player and 2 people who played once before. I won in 12th generation with Ecoline and 72. followed by Helion with 64, Saturn Systems (new girl) with 50 and Inventrix with 46

And we proceeded to Discworld: Ankh-Morpork, 4-player game between Elanius (won), Vetinari and 2 lords who needed to control 4 areas (I was one of them).


Friday

We played 4 games of Codenames: Pictures with 8 people. SO and I were always in the same team and we won twice and lost twice


Saturday

BANG! of all games got a lot of love during the weekend since my friends wanted to play over and over I don't have many friends who still enjoy it so I was pretty happy about it We played 4 times on Saturday, 6- and 7-player games. In the first one I played as Banditt and we won. Second game I was vice and SO sheriff and we won. Third game I was renegade and I survived to sheriff and 1 vice. Then they killed me. Fourth game I was a banditt and the good guys won.

They wanted to try some new games so we started with Saboteur, 6-player game. I ended with 3 gold, then we had 8, 7 (SO), 4, 3 and 1. Saboteurs never won

And next up was Camel Up which I also haven't played in a while. 7-player game. The winner had 29, SO had 28, then we had 25, 25, 24, I had 19 and the looser had 14.


Sunday

2 more games of BANG! were due on Sunday, 7-player games. In both I was sheriff and SO was banditt. In the first one, he killed me in round 2. In the second, we won
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14. Board Game: The Game [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:901]
Drew
United States
Dallas
Georgia
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Very slow week in gaming for me due to work and getting ready for our move.
I managed to get in 7 plays of 3 different card games with my parents over the week.

I introduced them to The Game which I keep with me when I travel for work to play solo, but had never played co-op. We ended up playing it 4 times in a row. The first two games were them feeling out the game and both ended with us not even getting through half the deck. The third game we managed to get down to around 30 cards and then the last game there were only 15 cards left when I couldn't play on my turn. Both my parents really enjoyed it and even asked where they could get a copy.
We also played 2 games of 6 Nimtt! which is a favorite of theirs. I enjoy it as well, but have been looking at the other two titles in Nimtt line and will probably pick up at least one of them to try and keep us from burning out on this game.
The last game we played was Phase 10. One of the people my parents play cards with on a weekly basis gave this to them. It was horrible! All three of us did not like it. The game lasts way way too long for what it is. After our first play my Dad put it in the closet and I hope it doesn't see the light of day again.
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15. Board Game: Kanagawa [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:520]
Patrick Hillier
United States
Kettering
OH
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Jamie on the show mentioned SOS Titanic and I saw it while looking thru my games and brought it along this weekend. I played it 1.5 times. It is essentially Klondike solitaire with a twist but fun. Character cards and special actions add a twist.



My table top day changed up and my wife and I ended up turning it into a getaway weekend to a state park and stated at the lodge. I brought some two player games. We ended up playing Kanagawa. Plays a lot different with two than my last four player game. Still good and sooooo pretty.




That is it for games. Unfortunately our week was a bit messed up this week with the passing of our cat Kal El. You've seen many pics of him here in the past.





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16. Board Game: Concordia: Gallia / Corsica [Average Rating:8.21 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.21 Unranked]
Carthoris Pyramidos
United States
Centennial
Colorado
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It was a relatively light week of gaming, because I was sick for the first part, and in no shape for company. Still, I did get in some good play, mostly over the weekend.

I had a three-game series of Chase with Prp, with the first two games both very close and split between us, and the third decisively in my favor.

Lunchtime play at the office saw a game of Concordia: 2 players on the Corsica board. It was crazy tight, with all the brick in the center of the board. One province produced brick, none produced food, and only one produced tools. My opponent managed to get all of the Minerva cards except for Smith (which I maximized). I did well on Mars and Saturn as usual, although Saturn pays less in Corsica. In the end I was down by 30 points.

Prp and I had a good play of A Study in Emerald, where I got to be the Loyalist and she the Restorationist for once. Play ended when she maxxed out the Restorationist track, but I won anyhow. It was a very close game, with a final score of 23 to 22 prior to the final penalty.



We followed that up with Arkham Horror: The Card Game, taking a second shot at the standalone Carnevale of Horrors scenario, using Jenny and Jim as we had the first time. Jim was defeated just before the end of the scenario, but Jenny reached safety and Resolution 1!



It snowed like crazy for May Day weekend by us, and inspired by the weather, we played three games of "Ice Caldera."



And we finished off the week with a play of Kingdom Builder where Prp scored a rare win for her. Only a little change from the base game here (i.e. Refuges and Gardens). I did go in big for Refuges and get the bonus tile there. I beat Prp in both Workers and Discoverers, and tied her in Fishermen. But she scored a Castle and Palace to make up the difference and beat me by one point!

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17. Board Game: King of New York [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:423]
Justin Wawrzonek
United States
Amsterdam
New York
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 7.0   Roll Player NEW!

I gave this a shot on Tabletopia, and was pleasantly surprised. It was anice puzzly game, with some cool mechanics, and a fun theme. I definitely want to try it multiplayer.

 7.0   King of New York x2 NEW!

I grabbed this up in the Barnes and Nobel 50% off sale, and was not disappointed. This a great filler type game with a great theme, and some great components (Iello always does). I just grabbed the power up expansion, so I'm hoping it will make it even better.

 8.0   Terraforming Mars

I finally played this with more than 2 players, and it was really fun. There was a lot more fighting for space on the board, and everything flowed at a decent pace, even with the extra players.
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18. Board Game: Karuba [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:378]
Kent Pritchett
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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This weekend I played Karuba with my wife and kids. We were all pretty close but my wife somehow managed to get all adventurers to the temple so she won with a healthy lead.

The kids and I played Rhino Hero, and my daughter had the fewest cards left as her older brother knocked over the tower.

My eldest son and I played some MTG this weekend first we played some classic MTG. I won but my son had dealt 9 poison counters to me with cobras and swamp mosquitoes so it was a close game. He was using a poison deck. Then we played MTG Dual of the planswalkers he beat me in this one so managed to get a little revenge.


Other games played this week included RftG, Coloretto, Dragonheart, Incan Gold, and Jaipur.




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19. Board Game: Betrayal at House on the Hill [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:422]
James Valadez
United States
El Paso
Texas
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Got two games of Betrayal in on Saturday. The first ended with the Abyss Gazes Back Haunt. I didn't enjoy it as much even though I was the traitor and the Abyss took over. The second was the Buried Alive Haunt which my son won as the traitor pretty handily. This is quickly becoming a favorite for the family. I think it's due to the different outcomes. They see it as a very different type of game than our others.
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20. Board Game: Planetarium [Average Rating:7.16 Overall Rank:1792]
Chris Hartman
United States
Pennsylvania
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Star Wars: Imperial Assualt


Grimslingers


Drakon


Cthulhu Wars

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21. Board Game: Dominant Species [Average Rating:7.84 Overall Rank:52]
Scott Daniel
United States
San Diego
California
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Table top day this week, so quite a few plays with most of them from Table Top day.

Games with Experienced Gamers



Thursday role-playing was cancelled and since we got an early start, we played Dominant Species. One of the closer games I've played, final scores ranged from 177-145 with me winning on the final score of the last tile. Any of 3 players had a good shot at winning on the final round with the one new player ending up in a close second. In order of finish, the animals were Reptiles, Birds, Insects and Arachnids. The Arachnids continue to struggle at our table.

Table Top Day



My friends Andy and Steph host this annually and I'm usually one of the game teachers. They had 8 people this year which led to two tables for most of the night. I started the day with Alhambra, which is my favorite gateway game. One person had played it last year. He liked it so much he wanted his wife to play, so I taught her. I ended up winning but it was close with the newcomer. They both enjoyed it quite a bit.

We played three games of Codenames with all eight of us as pizza was arriving shortly and it allowed everyone to eat but keep playing something. Very fun, I don't own it, but am happy to play it with 6 or more. We varied the spymasters and the game was well received by everyone.

We split up the tables again after dinner and we played thee games. First I taught The Dresden Files Cooperative Card Game and we played the first scenario with open hands. I was quarterbacking some at the beginning, but it clicked for all of them about halfway through and I let them take over. We won but they all noted it would be much tougher even we couldn't see all the cards.

Second, we played Pandemic, we had one person who hadn't played before, so we collectively taught him. We lost on due to cubes running out we had one cure completed and two more coming in the round we lost. Back to back epidemics did it.

Last, I taught Eternity. I had two other people familiar with trick-takers and trump, so it was an easy teach. We did some coaching of the fourth player, but she was asking good questions so it was clicking. The shifting trump was commented on frequently by the more familiar card players.

Also played at the other table was Tsuro, Ticket to Ride & Viticulture.


Solo Games



Played a side jobs scenario of Dresden Files. I'm still one away from the novel sequence, but enjoyed the Side Jobs scenario. I lost but it was close.

Continued my Barbarian campaign of Imperial Settlers. Had two different events that I decided to complete both which held my scoring opportunities down, but set me up well for the next game.


Online Games

Machiavelli
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22. Board Game: Yokohama [Average Rating:7.97 Overall Rank:104]
Thomas Leitner
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
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I got my copy of the TMG edition and got a chance to play it three times, once at each player count.

Yokohama has an Istanbul vibe in that its board is composed of randomly placed action tiles, and you have a worker that you route around the board using a similar breadcrumbs trail technique.

While similar, I find the actions taken in Yokohama more interesting and thus find the game more interesting than Istanbul. I also think I like the 3P count the best, though it played well at 2P and 4P.



A non-drafting 4P on ITtD. It was quite low scoring, likely as we only went 9 generations. There were lots of tech cards played which accelerated the game. I won with only 65 points.



My first time playing this tile laying game, I found the experience fairly indifferent. I would play again, but won't seek out the game.



Engineers, Darklings, Ice Maidens and Nomads, oh my! We used the base game map with the new points variant and the Darklings still won by more than 30 points.

In our post mortem discussion, we thought perhaps it was a mistake for the first player to choose a grey faction, allowing player two to choose the Darklings. Those two colors are symbiotic, meaning they do not compete for terrain at all and can thus build peacefully side by side giving each other lots of power.

Unfortunately, that relationship may allow the Darklings to run away with the game.



A quick game of Port Royal, my first time with Unterwegs. It's fine...doesn't add much to the base game but was pleasant enough.



Mo' Battle Line, mo' better. This is becoming my regular Thursday night closer. Good stuff.

That's it. Until next week...
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23. Board Game: Oh My Goods! [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:620]
Evan
United States
Longwood
Florida
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 7.8   Oh My Goods! x3 NEW!

I was at my weekly meetup a couple weeks back and someone said they wanted to play a game, but they only had 45 minutes left before they had to take off. I looking in my bag and realized everything that I had brought that night was a 90 minute or more game. Then when I got home, I looked at my game library and realized that I had very few games in my collection that were a) quick to play, b) had enough depth to satisfy a hard core gaming group and c) were for more than just two players. So, I set off to research a handful of titles that would satisfy that need. I came across 3-4 options, some of which are temporarily out of print or yet to be released, but one of the games that I could easily acquire was Oh My Goods!

I think this will not only be a great, meaty filler for my gaming group, but this will become my two-player game of choice with my wife. The great thing about this game is how portable it is. My wife and I played this on an airplane flying from Orlando to Phoenix and we were able to play it using two fold down tray tables. I really love this game and given my preference for "thinky" games, this might kill games like Jaipur for me. I read a lot of criticism about this game prior to purchase in that it is hard to build big chaining mechanisms to your engine builder, but I like games where executing a strategy to perfection is challenging and Oh My Goods! is no exception. Plus, I've played the game three times in a week's span and used three different strategies each time, to varying degrees of success. I like that a small card game that can fit in your pocket can provide that much depth and variability. I can see this rating increasing into the 8's over time.



 6.7   Hansa Teutonica NEW!

I was let down by Hansa Teutonica. Perhaps my expectations were too high? I wanted to try a euro with high player interactivity and this game provides that in spades, but what I didn't like is that in a four player game, all competitors decided to camp out at the edges of the board, on the routes that connect one of the five "upgrade" cities. Nobody touched the middle of the board at all and all the moves seemed very scripted, almost like I could anticipate every move each opponent would make. I'm sure that one game does not make a consensus and I would easily and willingly try the game again, but it just fell flat for me. It certainly didn't help that the graphic design and art in the game is so uninspiring.



 9.1   Grand Austria Hotel

I played Grand Austria Hotel this week for the fifth time in the last four months and it continues to rise on my rankings, now placing in my top five games of all time. I just love this game. I love the urgency this game brings, knowing you only have 14 turns in the entire game. GAH requires you to immediately scan your hotel board to see how the rooms are laid out (as in the advanced game, all boards are different). How your board is laid out determines which guests you take into your hotel, which bonuses you want to execute, which rooms you want to prepare, etc. Even after playing the game four times, I still managed to make mistakes at the end of the game that cost me at least 20 points (but I still managed a win). I love that this game challenges me to that extent and I find myself thinking about what I could have done differently after every play.



 6.5   Mint Works

After my third play of Mint Works, I'm convinced that the game ends too quickly. Because some of the buildings synergize with other buildings, the game could be tied 2-2 one round and then end the very next round due to the purchase of one specific building that will multiply the effects of other buildings. I think playing this game to 9 or even 11 will allow for a bit more strategic play as some strategies do not have time to execute under the games current rule set. I need to play this more to determine if my thoughts are simply my "gut" feeling about the game, or if these are actual limitations of the game. Regardless, it remains a nice, accessible filler game when you are looking to kill 20-30 minutes.
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24. Board Game: Yokohama [Average Rating:7.97 Overall Rank:104]
Darryl with one "R"
United States
Redmond
Washington
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On Sunday, my wife & I played Yokohama (TMG Deluxe version -- I refused to refer to it as 'Deluxified') for the first time.

When I read the rules months last year, Yokohama reminded me of 2 others: Istanbul (for the mechanic of moving your president from tile-to-tile and dropping assistants), and Le Havre (less about mechanics, and more about the spirit of very simple turn structure but a large number of options). We like Istanbul well enough, and we really like Le Havre (except it's a big longish for my tastes), so I figured we'd like Yokohama as well.

My wife raced ahead, grabbing several of the high-point scoring store & trading house spots, while I was collecting resources and (generally low-point scoring) contracts. By the middle part of the game, I was trailing by some 35 points. However, I made a late run and actually pulled to within 3 points late in the game. Unfortunately, the game didn't end quite quickly enough for me, so she was able to pull further ahead. In the end, she won 134-119.

Yokohama is a good game for my wife & me. It does have the one similar mechanic to Istanbul, but besides that the games feel very differently. There's quite a bit of setup variability, so I assume the best strategy for each game could be quite different.

However, I have to admit I was a little bit disappointed. I was hoping it would feel more like Le Havre -- very open, with a large number of strategic options -- but it felt a bit more constrained. After all, in the 2-player game, only 10 tiles are available, and 4 of them are basic "collect resource X" tiles. Perhaps the strategies are more interesting with more players, when more tiles are available.

So that's it overall -- a good game, but slightly disappointed.
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25. Board Game: Pandemic Legacy: Season 1 [Average Rating:8.66 Overall Rank:2]
Ken Chadwick
United States
Yonkers
New York
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** NO SPOILERS! **


We resumed our two-player Pandemic Legacy campaign, completing both June & July. We wound up losing the first game of each month before winning the second... and our win in July was on the very last turn, using every one of our actions. That was a close one!
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