2017 Secret Santa Taunts and Hijinks
Froggy McFrogface
United States
FORT COLLINS
CO
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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Got a chatty Santa? Are you being asked to perform feats? Solve puzzles? Being given clever rhymes? Please share them here for all to enjoy!
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1. Board Game: Secret Santa [Average Rating:5.07 Overall Rank:15639]
Froggy McFrogface
United States
FORT COLLINS
CO
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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Let the festivities begin!
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2. Board Game: Survival Horror: Nick-Mall Santa [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked] [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Meredyth
United States
Texas
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Dear Reader,

I don't know where to start... We are doomed...
They are everywhere... Santa is lost, we don't know where he is.
They got my friends, they turned them zombies.

They got warehouse, post office, Reindeer parking zone...

I really need to find Santa first.



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Froggy McFrogface
United States
FORT COLLINS
CO
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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modestblush

A list in which

Dennis B.
United States
Michigan
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submits himself to the trials imposed by his Santa.
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4. Board Game: Secret Santa: Krampus [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Justin Kita

Huntington Beach
California
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I will post my Santa’s hijinks here:

Puzzle 1:

Ho Ho Ho....

this Santa is not a conventional Santa .... this Santa likes puzzle, and farther the puzzle progress better your gift will become, are you ready for a game?

What is the phobia of Santa Claus called?


24h to answer then I move to the next one....
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5. Board Game: Munchkin Santa's Revenge [Average Rating:6.81 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.81 Unranked]
Dean Rogers
United States
Texas
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Hello Dean Rogers!
Santa Claus here.
Christmas is coming!
The best time of year.

Thanks for the letter.
A good place to start,
in deciding what games,
go into my cart.

It sounds like you've,
had a rough month or two.
Not hard to understand,
when a hurricane blows through.

You mention gaming goals,
in your profile text.
I can't seem to find them,
leaving me vexed.

Are they posted elsewhere?
I really must know.
Before I head off,
into the snow.

May I ask another question?
ok, two or maybe three.
In your letter, instead of "I",
you often say "we".

Do you play in a game group?
Do you play with your spouse?
Or when you play games,
in your pocket a mouse?

Do you have any kids?
Do they like to play too?
Sorry for all the queries,
it's just what I do.

It helps me with picking,
just the right present.
To make your Christmas,
all the more pleasant.

I will ask you a favor,
if you really are smitten.
Please post to this link,
these rhymes that I've written.

One final note.
The most important I'd wage.
Please post all your answers,
on your profile page.

HO! HO! HO!

Sincerely,
Your BGG Secret Santa
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6. Board Game: Magnetic Poetry The Game [Average Rating:5.00 Unranked]
Jason Long
United States
Auburn
California
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My most excellent Santa has asked me to write a Christmas sestina in order to get a tracking number for my incoming gift. (I'm a teacher, and Mrs. Claus felt it was high time the teacher got an assignment.) Love this idea! Here, then, is my 2017 BGG Secret Santa sestina (a poem with a complicated end-of-line pattern). You'll see the same six words repeat in a rotating order throughout. Enjoy!

BGG SESTINA

December draws near, the harbinger of gifts
To come, be they drink or food or game.
Is that the wind outside or reindeer flying?
Stoke the fire, clear the table, ready players
One, two, three, and four. On point!
Cubes, dice, and Meeples to bring the family joy.

The little one, practicing his level of joy,
Imagines with squeals and screams the gift
That might arrive to score the ultimate point.

What will it be? What kind of game?
Maybe one where all the players

Are dragons or giant birds flying?



No, says older brother, not flying

(Although that would bring some serious joy);

It will be something with players

Dancing around like elves, wrapping gifts!

He imagines this and a dozen others games,

Each with its own way for him to level up and score points.



Then it’s Mom’s turn to guess. She points

Out that we didn’t ask for anything with flying

Dragons or Christmas elves, but rather games

With other themes that bring other kinds of tabletop joy.

And, secretly, she imagines another kind of gift:

The smiles on her boys’ faces as they choose their player



Colors and prepare their player

Mats, in hopes of scoring winning points.

Then she asks Dad what kind of gift

He hopes for: does the idea of flying

Dragons or something else entirely bring him joy

When he imagines that ideal holiday game?



For his part, Dad admits to liking any game

That brings his little family of players

Together for hours of tabletop joy.

That, for him, is the entire point

Of table time: to take that wonderful flying

leap into other worlds with his family. What other gift



Could bring such joy? Pawns, dice, cards, cubes, points!

Listen! Santa’s sleigh approaches, with games to bring all players

Together. On the roof, flying reindeer! That, in itself, a wintry gift.
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7. Board Game: The Ungame [Average Rating:2.78 Overall Rank:17564]
Phil Christiansen
United States
Wasilla
Alaska
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I would spread the cloths under your feet: But I, being poor, have only my dreams; I have spread my dreams under your feet; Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
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First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me... and there was no one left to speak for me.
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So far I've been asked to add my favorite Christmas song to my profile. Done and done.

Edit: I've now been asked if I want a copy of Monopoly Deal, not sure if joking...


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8. Board Game: The Christmas Game [Average Rating:4.29 Overall Rank:16454]
Victor Wu
Canada
London/Richmond Hill
Ontario
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Didn't realize this thread was here until my Santa kindly pointed me towards it! First year doing secret Santa, have been having a lot of fun so far with a great Santa . Unfortunately I didn't save my responses to my Santa, but I hope you enjoy their taunts

Ho Ho Ho, my jolly friend!
It seems you've been a good boy this year, how grand!
Santa is here, he's observed your taste
Off to the workshops there's no time to waste!

My elves are stocked with Fluxx and Monopoly
Or perhaps Yahtzee is more up your alley?

Ah but I see, I must delay my quest
While you charade with your silly math trade
You must know only Santa will give you the best!

Perhaps I'll snoop around some more
Perhaps I'll browse your favorite stores
But until I write again
Bring Christmas cheer wherever you go!

Ho Ho Ho!

-Santa
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9. Board Game: Photosynthesis [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:340]
Romy Cat

Mississippi
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Games bring people together.
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My cool Santa sent me some clues hinting what is coming. My sister and I are having fun trying to figure them out. We think we have figured out three out of five. Would love help guessing the clues.


Hint #1
Christmas time is here
Happiness and cheer
Fun for all that children call
Their favorite time of year

FedEx in the air
Boardgames everywhere
Euros by the fireside
And joyful memories there


Hint #2
Oh ???? 
Oh ???? 

How lovely are your branches!


Hint #3
The Turkey is a funny bird
It’s head goes bobble-bobble
And all he knows is one word
And that is Gobble-Gobble

The Turkey is a shy bird
Thanksgiving makes him better
If he wants to seal you
He writes a letter


Hint #4
To bee or not to bee
That is the question

I know one thing
You will bee happy
On Saturday.

Hint #5

Life is a battle
Con the enemy with a rattle
If you can figure out her cards
Winning won’t be too hard. 


Wrap-up
I’ve sent you 5 clues
Each holds an answer for you
Something for you and your sister
I feel like such a trickster

Wait til Christmas or open right away
I hope it will make your day
If you wait a little while
These clues should give you quite a smile
Figure them all and you’re a genius
Figure them none And you’ll still enjoy Christmas 
You have Jesus so I know you don’t need presents
But it’s still fun to give them! So have fun!



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10. Item is no longer in our database
Yosh Ebonovich
United States
Stevens Point
Wisconsin
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Did you know Figgy is Santa's best elf? It's true! There hasn't been a better elf, ever. Figgy is the best. What will Figgy ask me to do next?

Figgy the Elf wrote:
Take a picture of yourself wearing the item found in said box while holding the other unopened box and post it on the thread. Trust me, the item is wearable. Just use your head.

Figgy the Elf wrote:
Post a limerick or haiku about your favorite elf of all time.
Post a clip of your favorite Christmas Movie and explain why it's your favorite.
Post a description about how you used to be a professional wrestler (what your name was, a few of your signature moves, what you were famous for, etc)
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11. Board Game: The Big Book of Madness: 2016 Greeting Card – Evil Santa [Average Rating:6.57 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.57 Unranked]
Joe Mottershaw
United States
Hawaii
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I received this taunt a few days ago from my secret santa.

Well, well, well..... You've made a list and on top of that, special instructions in your profile. Do you think this makes you a good boy? Do you think that is all it takes to please SANTA!? YOU ARE WRONG! MORE! MORE HOLIDAY CHEER PLEASE!

I've only had a few moments of free time due to family issues but I think that this might be a good start.



Here is a song and some images capturing better than I could Christmas on the islands.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hEvGKUXW0iI&feature=youtu.be (sorry embed won't work on this one)

***************************************************
Here was the latest response:

Well, well, well.... Someone decided to wake up and celebrate Christmas! Now that you're awake (WAKE UP!) and I have your attention. I need you to do me a favor. Yes. Yes. Yes. A favor!

I need you to tell everyone on BGG why Santa should visit Hawaii this year. You see, Santa lives in the North Pole for a reason and that reason is that THE SUN BURNS HIM! Hawaii is HOT! HOT! HOT! Santa hates HOT! HOT! HOT! And all of those pretty trees and beaches. Yuck! Yuck! Yuck!


GO! TELL THE PEOPLE WHY SANTA SHOULD VISIT! NOW!

###

I totally understand not liking the heat and the sun. As a fair skinned red head it is my mortal enemy. However there is a lot of reasons to see Hawaii that have nothing to do with the beach. Also keep in mind that our normal temps range from 72-84 year round so you aren't going to get too hot here.

Why should you visit though? Many reasons:

Natural settings


The culture



The Food



Most of all the people and laid back atmosphere. Really like anywhere else Hawaii is what you make of it. I've had a great time since I've been here and if you come with an open mind and a willingness to try things you will too. But you already know that don't you Santa?



******************************************************
Newest Update

Yes. Yes. Yes. Well then. That was something very special that you posted! Santa is amazed at the time and effort you put in to spreading cheer! Hawaii would make Santa even fatter and Mrs. Claus surely appreciates that (seriously, I can't even get out of bed in the morning with bowl of jelly in my belly...how on earth does she still find me attractive).


Santa has one more task to ask of you before you get your grubby hands on GAMES GAMES GAMES!

(well, 2)

I need you to tell me what games you've absolutely disliked and what would be just as bad as coal in your stocking this year! I also need you to update your paradise filled post with a fun/ funny/ crazy/ weird/ or awful gaming experience you've had. When all is in order, Santa will look into sending an elf or two your way. BE GOOD THOUGH BECAUSE I AM WATCHING YOU!!!!!!!

###

Well to be honest I've been lucky with most of the games I've played. For me even a bad game can be good with the right group of people. That being said I have two games that just have not done it for me. The first is

Trains and Stations

Now to be fair I did play it with two people using a variant. However we had problems with the rules on what seemed like an easy game. Specifically the routes and ties for locations (if I remember correctly) The rules were vague and caused frustration. I got it super cheap during a Barnes and Noble sale and is one of the few that I have regretted purchasing.

The next one is the other game I regret purchasing:

Hit Z Road

Now I try to get games that can be played solo so that I can have options when my gaming partner is unable to play. This was a game that I played solo once and was just bored while playing it. Even though all the components were thematic it still came across very dry. It just didn't feel like a zombie apocalypse. Now if I played it with more people I think the game would be different but I just don't have the desire to ever bring it out.

Now bad things for my stocking? I just saw a video that had a Chocolate Onion. That sounds pretty bad to me. Game wise though? Games that are unable to be played with just 2 people.

Crazy game day

So I am an introvert and am not very comfortable in social settings. At least not with people I don't know. However when I first moved to Hawaii I thought that going to a gaming day at a local game store would be a good thing to help me adjust to my new environment. I brought to games with me Forbidden Island and Robinson Crusoe: Adventures on the Cursed Island. Two completely opposite types of co-op games.

Now I was able to play a few games with a group of people and we were going to play a game of Power Grid Deluxe: Europe/North America but the person that was going to teach it didn't know the differences between the normal and deluxe version and so didn't feel they could teach it. So they suggested we play Robinson Crusoe.

So I had the first edition which I had only played solo. I now had to teach three other people how to play this beast of a game. So I jumped in and started teaching as best I could. Then we finally got to playing. I could see in their eyes that they weren't feeling it, at least not at first. It wasn't connecting or we had to look up too many rules. Then we had to break from the game for a store raffle.

During the break I asked each person individually if they wanted to play a different game. No sense in wasting everyone's time if they weren't having fun. They all said no and wanted to keep playing. I figured they were just humoring me. Back to the game we went.

Slowly but surely we explore the island. With every passing event the group is getting sucked in. We survive animal attacks and harsh weather. We explore ancient ruins and hope to not get cursed. We build our shelter and build a barricade. We are surviving against the odds but don't have our signal fire built yet and the rescue boat is on the way. With 2 turns left I get a call.

My wife is off from work and is there to take me to go eat.

My heart sinks. I don't want to make her wait but we are so close to the end.

I just have to clean up the game I say.

This gives me some breathing room. Quickly I let everyone know that we have to rush now. All of us focus on risky moves to get all the wood we need by the last turn. As I get a second call asking how much longer, we are able to get the last turn finished - with a win! Telling my wife that I am on the way I sweep the table of all the bits into the box (this makes me cringe thinking of it even now), fold up the board and throw the lid on. The group had loved the game despite my initial judgement.

Two years later I started a new job and one of the people from that day was already working there. She remembered me and the game that we won by the skin of our teeth.

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12. Board Game: Cow Tiger Santa Claus [Average Rating:6.69 Unranked]
Bryce Journey
United States
Omaha
Nebraska
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For the first time ever, I got taunted! I'm so excited! But I have no idea what it means! Is this is a riddle? A hidden hint as to what Santa is getting me? This is what I get for having an obscene wish list - if this is a hint, it could be any number of things! If it is a clue, is it a clue for one game or three? Who knows? What do you guys think?

"From all accounts you’ve been a good boy this year! Very well, very well.

I hope you save the ‘time’ to hatch a ‘wizard egg’ and feel all that ‘love’ around the place.

Have fun, goodly boy!

With hugs proper,
Santa"

Update 11/25

Taunt solved!


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13. Board Game: Roll Player: Cursed Ring [Average Rating:6.99 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.99 Unranked]
Zack
Poland
Warsaw
mazowieckie
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What a lovely day!
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My Sneaky Santa just made a subtle and clever hint of what I might be getting. We were just exchanging nice little messages, Santa answered my question about what kinds of games does he like and just casually dropped something along the lines of:

Quote:
My elves will be at your doorstep in few days. It will take so long because they need to stop in Massachusetts and they need to pick up an interesting old ring. I hope your wife and you will love it!

Well at first I didn't understand it was a hint laugh That "old ring" intrigued me, I genuinely thought that maybe there is going to be some kind of accessory, inside the package? And that Santa clues in about his current whereabouts (Massachusets)?. But then it hit me, when I perceived what city is supposedly located in the Massachusets laugh And that "old ring" could that be actually the "One Ring"?! I realized what an awesome crossover would that be - world of Lovekien (Tolkraft?)
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14. Board Game: The Santa Clause [Average Rating:6.25 Unranked]
Paul Naxer
United States
Corvallis
Oregon
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My Santa has a penchant for rhyming too:

Dear Paul,

You made a list
I’m checking it twice

Scrolling through pages
Once
Twice
Thrice
What shall I gift you?
A game for two?
An expansion to make an old game brand new?

I’m whirling away
Trying to find something perfect in my sleigh.
Amid cardboard chits and linen-finished cards
You will find my elves working ever so hard
Come december, a gift you might find
Wrapped in a box, sealed and signed.

Maybe one gift will do or maybe two?
Be on the lookout for more
You never know what my elves have in store.

Santa
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15. Board Game: Scene It? Movie [Average Rating:5.52 Overall Rank:15532] [Average Rating:5.52 Unranked]
AJ Newhausen
United States
Loves Park
Illinois
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My Santa apparently thinks I know more about obscure Christmas movies than I do. This is equal parts "sharing the hijinx" and "crowdsourcing for answers":

Quote:
Obscure Santa films (and maybe some not so obscure ones) is the topic. Let's see how many riddles you can get before Christmas. Feel free to use the geek if need be. I will send as many as you can guess. Let's start with the first:

Bad Santa Movie #1: In this movie (well it's more of a made for tv movie if you get my drift) we have two Santas (because one is never enough). Santa the elder is losing his magic and Santa the younger isn't quite ready to take over. Most of the film takes place in Miami and evidently according to this movie immigration officers have replaced the police force there and investigate crimes ranging from the remote possibility of someone overstaying a visa to embezzlement. Santa the younger is played by an actor whose biggest claim to fame is a sitcom spin-off show. He lives the life of perpetual bachelor with a massive inheritance and ends up being the sucker who takes the rap for a charity turned embezzlement scheme. Can you name the movie? Can your fellow geeks? Have I lost my magic like Santa the Elder in the movie? if so maybe I'll send you a copy of Monopoly. Do I have Agent Nardo on the case for the perfect present?

Santa (the ever mysterious)
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16. Board Game: Penalty [Average Rating:5.50 Unranked]
Brent Bannister

Basingstoke
Hampshire
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Hello Everyone!

I have been given the task of identifying my Secret Santa's top 10 games by solving various clues and puzzles.

Unfortunately I have been given a penalty from my Santa for getting one of the games wrong I was too quick to submit my guess without reading the information properly.

If anyone would like to have a go at solving the clue, to find a board game expansion, here it is:
Quote:
Coming from the North Pole I love a voyage backwards from the South of Rodna.

My penalty is to recount my most embarrassing gaming experience.

I have not been involved in board gaming for very long, so I don't have many embarrassing moments to choose from, although one does stick out in my mind! A few months ago I was playing Ticket To Ride: Europe with the full complement of 5 players. The game began and we were all dealt our initial starting tickets, and from that moment onwards, I just knew I was going to win. All of my short routes were along (or shared 90% of the stations with) my long route. With a starting hand like this, I simply had to win. The game started well, I picked up a couple of Locomotive cards off the top of the face down deck. I was then able to complete a couple of my shorter routes in the next few turns. The rest of the players were all fighting over the central areas of the map so I had free choice of the routes to the east. I finished my long route in record time and was able to pick up another couple of tickets. These were not as easy as my original tickets but they did lie to the east of the map which was still empty at this point in the game. I knew I was ahead at this point, but one of the other plays had managed to construct a deceptively long train, utilising loops to mask just how long the train really was. With this is mind, I kept an eye on my own long train (which was 4 or 5 carriages longer than my closest rival). As we neared the end game, it became clear that myself and the other player were closer on points than we first thought, and the victory was all going to come down to the player who won the bonus points for the longest train. My rival was a couple of carriages ahead of me with 2 turns to go and the only way for me to win was to build through a risky tunnel with no extra train cards to pay any penalties I should incur. As the random cards were turned I held my breath, but luck was on my side and I was able to build the tunnel, soaring into the lead and securing victory! My opponent couldn't place any trains in the final round so it didn't matter what I did. I claimed a short route, unconnected to my longest route to finish the game.

Points were tallied and it came to declaring the longest train. I had far more trains than my opponent, there was really no contest. I placed my finger over my first train and began to count out my trains, one at a time, proudly .... and that's when I noticed it.

Right in the middle of my longest train...there was a gap. And not just any old a gap. A one train sized gap. And not only was it a one train sized gap. It was a "grey" gap, meaning I could have spent any colour train card to complete the longest train.

I wasted my final turn completing a useless section of track, only to lose the game by a single point, because I had not noticed a single train gap in my longest route blush blush blush

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17. Board Game: Secret Santa [Average Rating:5.07 Overall Rank:15639]
Jonathan Piers
Canada
Fredericton
New Brunswick
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I seem to have hit the jackpot in terms of involved Gifters. I was messaged promptly by one of Santa's asking for some information about me. My interests outside of Board Games, what I do for work and anything else interesting.

I almsot didnt participate this year as my wife and I are expecting our first child in June and ever since we found out I am just a little more hesitant to spend even small amounts of money. However my santa is making this so worth it even before I have gotten my gift.

Santa has given me a list of tasks to complete in order to get my gift. Apparently the elves screwed up lol. I have completed 1 and a half of my 5 tasks.

Task 1: Santa sent me a satellite view of my city down town with some a way point for me to go to. Once there at a specific time i had to wave to a city security camera across the road that they were watching through online. A little creepy when you remove the secret santa context but so much fun. They sent me a screenshot of me on the camera showing I had completed the task.

Task 2: I was then given clues that led me to a government residence in my city. I was tasked with taking pictures of said residence and explaining a little bit about the building. I completed the task but was told I need to re take some pictures with a component from one of my favourite games to prove that it was me and not stock images. Both task 1 and 2 were on Saturday but rain kept me from entering out to finish my second task. tomorrow should be better. I can't wait to see what Santa has in store. I am having so much fun and my friends are following along with me on instagram. They are having fun with it to.

Edit 1: So I sent Santa my new photos. Sadly due to a function at a location they were not very good but to make up for it, I took 5 pictures with a piece from each of my top 5 games explaining why I love each of those games. Santa said they like to read so I sent them a lot to read. No to eagerly await my next task.

Edit 2: Guys I think something is wrong with Lankin the elf assigned to me. His underlings seem to be staging a coup of some sort...

Edit/Task 3: After a quiet few days (I think I was a little to eager with completing my tasks), I was directed to a blue building downtown where the minions who have apparently now taken over and imprisoned Lankin. It was one of my local game stores who once given the secret phrase, handed over a wrapped package. I messaged the minions asking whether I was supposed to open it or not and was told no so I guess I will have to wait to find out whats inside.



Edit/Task: I have no idea at this point.
So I got a message from the minions imprisoning Lankin yesterday saying they needed to "check my physical fitness" to see if I was worthy of my gifts. This required going on a walk through my cities walking trail network specifically an old growth forest in the middle of the city. I was told I would get bonus points (i didn't realize there was a point system until now blush ) if I told a local legend/ghost story/ folk tale while I was on said walk.

I had nothing for this part. I spent an hour or so looking for some kind of legend surrounding my city and did find one about a ghost that apparently haunts the downtown cathedral. Information was spotty at best for this legend but I gave what my rendition of it and even went down to the cathedral and showed the minions around. All of this had to be recorded on video.

Well I got a message from Lankin saying the minions were so entertained that they let him go free. Its a little awkward now because in my video I accepted and devoted myself to my new minion overlords so hopefully Lankin isn't too upset. I think I am nearing the end of my quest.

https://flugiflinsecretsanta.wordpress.com

Edit:Task 4 complete.

It appears that Lankin has some minions here in my hometown. Actually at my workplace. I was sent on Sunday to my church where I work where several gifts were waiting for me. These were supposed to be wrapped to be opened later but my wife....I mean one of the unknown minions forgot to wrap them. So hiding throughout the church I found the Cities in Ruin expansion for my favourite coop Eldritch Horror. With that was the entire Dark Waters trilogy of Arkham files novels. Was told by Lankin that these books are "so bad and cheesy they are good". Just my kind of entertainment.

Finally there was a copy of one of my most wanted games Through the Ages: A New story of civilization. Im so excited to get these played but promised I wouldn't play till after Christmas since they weren't wrapped (I won't have time between now and Christmas anyways.

I think I am still awaiting one final task and then I will be able to open my final mystery gift.

Edit: Final Task
So I guess its not over yet. Despite Santas overwhelming generosity there is still one final task. On tuesday (or thursday if there is a snow storm) I am to go downtown to out local board game cafe. There will be someone wearing a specific scarf and in order to receive my last gift, I have to beat them in a game of their choice. My wife keeps asking me what if I can't beat them. I would rather not think about that lol
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18. Board Game: Shout! [Average Rating:6.39 Unranked]
Anthony Davies
United States
Newberg
Or
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MY FIRST MESSAGE FROM SANTA INSTRUCTED ME TO CHANGE MY SANTA LETTER TO ALL-CAPS, SINCE HE IS HARD OF HEARING. I FOLLOWED THEIR INSTRUCTIONS, SINCE I DID NOT WANT TO BE PLACED ON THE NAUGHTY LIST! LATER ON I WROTE A NORMAL MESSAGE IN THE BGG SANTA THREAD, ONLY TO RECEIVE THIS MESSAGE FROM SANTA FIVE MINUTES LATER:

Santa Geekmail wrote:
Anthony,

It has been brought to my attention by one of my elves that you recently posted in the following thread:

https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1883720/bgg-2017-secret-san...

What does it say? I can tell there's something there but I can't make it out. I must remind you that I'm a little hard of hearing.

SINCE SANTA IS WATCHING MY EVERY MOVE ON BGG, I NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT ALL MY CORRESPONDENCE IS IN ALL-CAPS. APPARENTLY SANTA HAD A HORRIBLE SLEIGH ACCIDENT DURING THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION (SMOKE MAKES IT HARD TO SEE WHERE YOU'RE GOING) AND HAS SUFFERED FROM HORRIBLE HEARING LOSS. I'M DOING MY BEST TO ACCOMMODATE TO THEIR NEEDS.

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19. Board Game: Maurice: War in an Age of Gentlemen and Philosophers – 1690-1790 [Average Rating:8.27 Overall Rank:7747]
Benjamin Tieman
United States
Simi Valley
California
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Alright Santa, you so kindly (and poetically! You people are missing out... my Secret Santa is quite creative!) requested a picture of Maurice. I forgot for a time. He reminded me today. Loudly.

So! Here is the big guy. He was sorta napping... and apparently wearing shoes.



Let me know if you want to see more of the critters!

UPDATE

Santa, you asked for a picture of both Lilith, and my sweet Cavalier, so here are both of them, attempting a game of Gloomhaven.

Ellie has been invited to the table before, generally she can be a pretty good dog and sit and watch. For a little bit. I used to have a great one of her with her front paws on the table, looking like she was surveying her game (LotR LCG I believe), but that picture was lost when a phone did the same.


Lilith is definitely much more active... she doesn't have the attention span or ability to sit still for more than 2 seconds. That picture was tough... She's a bit silly, I told her its quite tough to play while sitting on the pieces. You can see she is sorta listening.


UPDATE

Awesome sauceome!!! Thank you Santa for your gift of Agricola!
Catticus is in love already!



Thank you again for the entertaining geekmails, the attention, the interest in my animals, and the overall AWESOME secret Santa experience!!! I hope the best for yours as well!

UPDATE

wow An update/stocking stuffer, after receiving Agricola? An amazingly generous Santa! Also, a request to see the final cat, Kitteh, the less pushy than the other two. He likes to hang out up high, so I was able to catch him in his natural habitat in my natural habitat, my game room.



UPDATE

The final one, and probably the most difficult to photograph. Moxxi is a princess, and so everything has to be on her terms. Hanging out with the majority of the second package (thank you again Santa!!!)

Yes, she is that small, btw.

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20. Board Game: The Bottle Imp [Average Rating:6.75 Overall Rank:1182]
Eeyore
United States
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
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I feel bad for not being able to get into this for a few days, but now I have some time and it's definitely a thing that's happening arrrh

(the original anonymous message was entitled "Santa's In Trouble")

WW Secret Santa wrote:
Another November night full of work and study has you walking home through Schenley Park tired and cold. Your head is full of thoughts and you're checking your phone, not paying much attention to the walkway in front of you until you kick a bottle. A bottle with a note in it?

You look around for an owner but there's no one nearby. You think you passed a jogger a few minutes ago but didn't give them much thought.
Instinctively, you reach down and pick up the bottle. It's a green glass bottle and the note is partly unrolled inside so that it won't fit back through the top without some assistance. The body of the note isn't visible but as you hold the bottle up towards the light you can make out the first word.


Help!...

What do you do?











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Update 11/25
Sorry for the lack of updates--
Things have moved fast since getting back from Thanksgiving.

First, the note-- the message was cryptic, incomplete, & would take time to decipher.

Whoever was in danger couldn't wait that long so I made some deductive leaps based on context clues and decided between the green bottle, the node written in red on snow white paper, and the faint smell of nutmeg coming from the bottle, there was only one thing this not could mean-- Santa's in Trouble!

I knew I urgently needed to find more clues... but where?

Fortunately, I have a good memory of Christmas lore and enough familiarity with geography for you to suspend your disbelief; so, knowing that the North Pole is in Canada, I caught the first Air Canada flight to Vancouver, in the hopes that if I act fast I can find Santa's trail while it's still cold...

Update 12/10
Top secret schenanigans are happening. I have received at least one gift and some cryptic messages. Expect more news once the sensitivity of the situation is resolved.
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21. Board Game: Orléans: Christmas Market [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked]
Mynn Demiter
United States
Pittsburgh
Pennsylvania
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I've been exchanging messages with my Santa - we were both at PAX Unplugged, and I stayed off the naughty list by not purchasing most of my wishlist.

Santa has provided me with a riddle of what he bought, so I thought it fitting to post here. I responded to him with my guesses and am waiting to see what happens next.

This is my first year participating in Secret Santa and it has been so much fun!

=====================================================================

Santa's Riddle:

HO HO HO

I picked out seven things,
no more, no less,
I won't give the names nor more numbers,
but I will let you guess.

Two and a half are on your wish list,
The rest are not,
Is one tribal by nature?
Or one too wordy to tell?
Perhaps you'll need to expand your mind, or at least some games designed?

Three are "Love to Haves",
I'll glue you in on the rest,
I won't give further clues,
until at least you have guessed.

Sincerely,
Your Secret Santa
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22. Board Game: Five Tribes: Dhenim [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.43 Unranked]
Yo Dede
Germany
Düsseldorf
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Dear BGG-community,

I’m lucky this year, again I suppose, to have a fast and frequently replying Santa. But now he seems to have laid his responsibility in the hands of Dhenim “the Djinn of Christmas”. Now I will have to destroy some jinxed “Five Tribes”-cards to fulfill some of my wishes. (See also here: Item for Geeklist "2017 Edition of Look What My Secret Santa Sent Me…" )

But let me start at the beginning:

Santa nearly instantly contacted me and we came along quite well sharing some personal information. Thus said, he gave me a hint regarding my gifts ("watch here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denim") which I wasn’t able to process. One week later there was already a nicely wrapped package delivered at my front door. As I am currently away from home, I couldn’t wait to get to know the content of the gift box and let my girlfriend do a live unboxing during my train ride to Berlin. It was a hilarious experience for both of us (and perhaps even for some people sitting next to me). So, thanks a lot for this Santa!



The letter now tells me that Santa has fulfilled his duties and lays all further responsibility in the hands of Dhenim. Unfortunately, he is hard to contact and therefore I have to “rub” (i.e. destroy) one of the three remaining cards (the fourth card I may include in my respective game) to summon him. I will then have to provide this information by presenting the torn card in this thread.

I know that at this moment you are probably as excited as I am myself. Unfortunately, I want to de-jinx the cards myself personally, so we have to wait and see what may happen until Sunday At the moment everything is still intact.



Now it begins... Dhenim, I summon thee!



Hopefully the second one didn't sting as much as the first one. Santa seems to be a weird guy with his weakness for strange voodoo practices...



As you can also see in my other thread, my first gift (Mafia de Cuba) arrived at my place. It arrived beautifully wrapped in addition with a small greeting card. Thanks a lot for sending me something Dhenim! My choice regarding the "waiting <-> opening" decision in reality was non at all

So looking forward playing this game with a bunch of people during holiday season!






A second one is on is seemingly in progress as I type...So excited

It arrived today! Perfect timing for Saint Nicolas Day in Germany. How can you time it like this? Again a nicely wrapped packet reached me and in it was:



7 Wonders Duel: Pantheon, an expansion to a game I already love. It seems that I'll have a lot to catch up to and try out during Christmas holiday season.
You've been to generous to me already Santa/Dhenim! But there is still the third untouched Five Tribes card...

Dhenim, I at least Tried to fullfill my duty by folding the third card origami-like into a...frog. You have to honour the approach! The card was quite small, but thick. Here we go



So, my last package arrived. Couldn't wait to open it and found a brandnew The Big Book of Madness in it.



Thanks a lot Santa. Now I really have to find time to play my new presents It has been a lot of fun again this year!
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23. Board Game: I Believe in Santa Claus! [Average Rating:6.75 Unranked]
Andrew Crawford
United States
Eugene
Oregon
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Santa's certification to gift board games expired (decades ago) and he needs my help getting recertified. Of course I'm going to help Santa out!

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24. Board Game: Monopoly: A Christmas Story [Average Rating:5.02 Unranked]
Ursula S
United States
Washington
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Received this taunt from my gifter today!

Quote:
Ho, ho, ho and merry chitmas!

It’s your ol’ pal Santa here. I must confess I’m not really “down with the kids”, as they say, so I’ve had trouble finding this wishlist of yours. Things were much easier when people took the time to send letters, you know! None of this newfangled nonsense, funny text messages with vowels missing — pure laziness! Not to worry though, I’ve been doing this for a long time now and if you don’t just love your parcel then my name isn’t Father Christmas! Monopoly is a real classic and I’m sure you’ll have a great time playing it with your family and friends this December.*

All the best,
Scottish Santa

*Santa accepts no responsibility for the following hazards of play: assaults, bankruptcy, boredom, break-ups, deaths, divorces, manslaughters, murders and more.
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25. Board Game: Clue [Average Rating:5.66 Overall Rank:8218]
Henry Heiberger
United States
South Dakota
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The day after targets were assigned, my Santa sent me the following message. "Merry Christmas Sir. I wanted to let you know Santa has seen your list and is checking it twice. He also saw the note you left, but there was a mix up in the Elf Intelligence Agency. We seemed to have lost all your other likes. We have the music and traveling but seem to have lost favorite TV shows, movies, books stuff like that. If you could let me know that info, I will make sure your file is updated."

I did what he/she asked and did not hear back until last night. I received two small packages in the mail and had no idea what could be inside them. When I opened them, I discovered that they contained clues.

The first package contained a copy of season 1 of Corner Gas. It was accompanied by the following message. "Hi Henry, Welcome to Secret Santa. Your game will come eventually, but something to wet your appetite. Be aware of clues."


The second package was a copy of the graphic novel "Fables Legends in Exile". It also was accompanied by a message. "Hi Henry, Gift number two. Did you open the first one? Every gift will revolve around the game."


I have been looking into both of the clues and trying to find a game in my wishlist that ties into them. My current thought is Letters from Whitechapel. The graphic novel appears to be a murder mystery which fits the theme from that game. However, the TV show does not fit as well. It takes place in a small rural area which could have some serial killerish setting but other than that it doesn't really fit. If anyone has any better ideas feel free to post a comment.

EDIT 1:

Today I have received two additional packages. They appear to be clues as well.

The first package contained season one of the TV show Mission Impossible. The message that came with it was a simple, "Hi Henry, Enjoy Your Gift!"


The second package contained a Spy Gear Wrist Blaster. It came with the message "only to be used on the mission".


I am now becoming more stumped on what the clues will lead to. The two packages today seem to have more of a deception and spy theme which leads me away from Catacombs. Maybe it is Letters from Whitechapel? Any ideas will be appreciated!

Edit 2

Today I have received three more packages. I believe that they are in some way a clue.

The first package contained the educational card game Top Trumps 007. It came with the default message.


The second package contained a copy of Atlas Obscura, a calendar that has 365 days of obscure locations. It came with the following message. "Hi Henry. Santa knows you like to travel. Here is a calendar of obscure places to find. Do not get caught!"


The third package contained a copy of Weird Washington, a travel guide to local secrets in Washington. It also came with the default message.


The clues are starting to become harder to decipher. I am shocked by the generosity of my Santa and am surprised that there have been so many clues.

Edit 3

I have received the final clue from my Secret Santa. Today he sent me the following message. "Dear Henry, hope you enjoyed the gifts. Your ultimate gift is on the way. Up to you if you wish to open then or at Christmas. As for clues you were close at the beginning but look at your list again and see if another game fits. Merry Christmas!" Factoring the spy clues that I have recently received, I believe that the best guess for the game is Specter Ops. I am not sure how the first few clues fit with that though...

Edit 4

My secret santa sent me my final package yesterday. It was Specter Ops! I am shocked by his/her generosity. This has been an experience I will never forget. I am going to try to play this as soon as possible!
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