SNEW November 2008
Nick Avtges
United States
Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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SNEW November was originally scheduled for 11/15, but is likely to be rescheduled. Stay tuned here for updates on that.

So....

What are we going to play?

Update: Looking like SNEW will be 11/22...stay tuned.
Update: Definitely not the 22nd. Right now it's between the 8th or a special Veteran's Day SNEW on the 11th. Thoughts?
Update: SNEW November will be at 5pm on Saturday, 11/29. See you then!
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1. Board Game: Battle Line [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:179]
Nick Avtges
United States
Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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Scott P. showed up early and while we were waiting for folks to show up we thought we would play a game of Knizia's classic. Of course, this was just the kind of thing that brings people to the door and soon Scott, Gary, and Greg had arrived. We discussed what we would play, and settled on a 5 player game of Sword of Rome, which Scott H. had left at home. While he ran off to retrieve that, Gary and Greg played a game of Battle Line. Greg was victorious achieving 5 flags.
 
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2. Board Game: The Battle for Hill 218 [Average Rating:6.66 Overall Rank:1477]
Nick Avtges
United States
Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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While Gary and Greg battled in ancient Persia, Scott P. and I fought over Hill 218. While this is more of an abstract game with a WWII theme, it does work well, is fun, and plays very quickly. We got in three games and I won all three. Despite it's simplicity, there is a learning curve to this game and you need to know what the big threats are. While I had only played against the computer in the version available from the publisher's website, I had played enough to get pretty good against the hard level AI. That experience definitely helped me.
 
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3. Board Game: Sword of Rome 5th Player Expansion [Average Rating:6.97 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.97 Unranked]
Nick Avtges
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Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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Scott H. quickly returned and soon we were struggling over ancient Italy. Powers were randomly assigned: Rome to Nick, Gall to Scott H., Etruscan/Samnites to Scott P., Greece to Greg, and Carthage to Gary. I was excited about drawing Rome as I had not played them before and was eager for the challenge. Greg and Gary had not played before so we quickly ran through the basics and began.

Things began in a fairly standard manner. Greece and Carthage fought over Sicily, with Greece actually taking the island before a Carthaginian invasion force took their VP city back. Rome wiped out the Volcii and began colonization of their home spaces. Gall raided some Etruscan spaces. The Etruscans/Samnites hoped no one would stomp them.

After exchanging blows, Greece and Cart hage decided they would both be better off splitting Sicily and directing their aggression elsewhere. For Carthage this meant a turn or two to rebuild and for Greece this meant a chance to go up against the Romans, who (perhaps unwisely) had besieged Neapolis. Greece soon had a great deal of force in the area and was eventually able to take Capua, a great blow to the Romans who avoided losing a VP by subjugating and colonizing Fregellae. In the meantime, Gall had sacked Pisae and was leading in VPs. At this time, Carthage took advantage of the Etruscans weakened state and invaded. Carthage was eventually able to secure a strong foothold in Italy, holding both Pisae and Populonium, both rich areas providing VP. Thus gaining 2 VP per turn and able to threaten to gain 3, Carthage was able to get to 12 VP at the end of turn 7 for the victory.

I was very happy to play Sword of Rome again. After 3 plays, I think I have finally played through a game without any major tactical errors. Lessons learned previously: don't over expose yourself to attrition and always garrison your VP locations! Now I've got to work on my diplomatic skills in the game as well as long term strategy. In this game, I could see immediately that an alliance between Greece and Carthage was especially bad news for me as Rome. I was not able to persuade the others to leave me alone to fight this alliance and also was unable to convince either Greece or Carthage to break their treaty. With large Greek armies in the south, threatening Gallic raiders, and nasty Etruscan card play, I feel I was fortunate to hold my own and scrape out a few VPs here and there. Ultimately my early attack on Neapolis proved to be unwise, as an alliance with Greece would have been much more valuable in many ways.

I have enjoyed Sword of Rome as a three, four, and five player game. I find the interactions and disparities between the players to be fun and interesting. Every time I play, I always leave with thoughts on how I could play better and ideas to try next time. It is rapidly rising up my list of favorites and is a game I would happily play any time.
 
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4. Board Game: Pursuit of Glory [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:1585]
Nick Avtges
United States
Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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This game has recently shipped. Anyone have a copy? Paths of Glory is a huge favorite and if anyone else is interested, I'd love to dive into this game.
 
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5. Board Game: Flintlock: Black Powder, Cold Steel - Volume I: Carolina Rebels [Average Rating:5.98 Overall Rank:11376]
Scott Henshaw
United States
East Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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Scott P. brought this and it looks good. I would not mind giving this a spin.
 
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6. Board Game: A House Divided [Average Rating:7.08 Overall Rank:945]
Scott Henshaw
United States
East Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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I still need to play this before the year ends. Anyone else interested?
 
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7. Board Game: Prussia's Defiant Stand [Average Rating:6.87 Overall Rank:4757]
Scott Henshaw
United States
East Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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Still need to try this out.
 
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8. Board Game: Rommel in the Desert [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:1035]
Scott Henshaw
United States
East Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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A long owned block game, highly rated, and I have not played it. How about it Gary, you have expressed an interest in the past.
 
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9. Board Game: 2 de Mayo [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:1026]
Scott Henshaw
United States
East Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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I just received this little game. Suppose to pack a big punch in a 20-30 min. game. I'd like to break this in.
 
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10. Board Game: Combat Commander: Europe [Average Rating:7.90 Overall Rank:102]
Nick Avtges
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Bridgewater
Massachusetts
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The new C3i should have arrived by SNEW. It's will have at least one new CC scenario, including a brand new map. It's been a while since I've played and I'd love to get a game in to warm up before all the new CC stuff gets here in December.

Scott, you mentioned Jay was interested, particular in Combat Commander. Please pass along the SNEW email and I'll try to remember to add his address to my list.
 
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11. Board Game: Lock 'n Load Tactical: Day of Heroes [Average Rating:7.67 Overall Rank:2598] [Average Rating:7.67 Unranked]
Gary Libby
United States
Middletown
Rhode Island
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I read Scott P's email and am adding this for him. I have this one also and want to eventually try it.
 
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12. Board Game: Kutuzov [Average Rating:6.89 Overall Rank:3900]
Gary Libby
United States
Middletown
Rhode Island
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This is the only of the series I have not played yet. Getting this to the table in the near future is a must for me!
 
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13. Board Game: Successors (third edition) [Average Rating:7.52 Overall Rank:904]
Gary Libby
United States
Middletown
Rhode Island
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Another new multiplayer game. I have not even taken it out of the shrink wrap yet, but it is on my radar to play.
 
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14. Board Game: Conflict of Heroes: Awakening the Bear! – Russia 1941-42 [Average Rating:7.55 Overall Rank:390]
 
Gary Libby
United States
Middletown
Rhode Island
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I played the first scenario a few weeks back and the game seems quite promising. I really want to play a few more of the more advanced ones to really see how the system plays. There was a lot of quick back and forth play between the opponents which was nice. The lack of insane battlefield chaos gave this game a much different feeling from that of Combat Commander (that is not necessarily good or bad, just different).
 
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