Luck Be a Lady
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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Well my Wednesday night FLGS group were hosted Friday night by one of the regulars, Josh.
Wife out of town, the mice will play, you know the drill.

I showed up first of course and waited a few while Josh was out running last minute errands.
Did I mention I was early?

Anyway folks trickled in until we had 9 or 10.

But that's not what prompted this list.

Luck is. Because over the course of the next 10 hours, I played eight different games and won every single one.
Never in my mediocre playing history has such a thing occurred and probably never again.

You might be thinking, "that bastard's just bragging."
And you'd be right.

Hence this list
Now to the games.

And big thanks to Josh for being a great host.
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1. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.28 Overall Rank:229]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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First up, San Juan. Josh, Todd and I started this, Michael showed up halfway through the first turn and we dealt him in.

Josh had never played this, but had played Race for the Galaxy a disgusting number of times.
He kept trying to take a role and wait until everyone had them to turn it face up.
But he finally adjusted.

As per lady luck, my first build was a silver mine and shortly after that I got a nifty combo going early on; pay one less for violet buildings, draw a card when I build a violet building.
Later on I got the building that gave me victory points for all my violet buildings.

End game, my first win of the night. Lucky start.
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2. Board Game: Valdora [Average Rating:6.83 Overall Rank:1217]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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Next was Valdora. I'd borrowed this and had no luck getting it played with my Thursday night group.
"Why should we play it if we can't play it again?" I was told when I said I only had it for a week.

Ah well, Josh, Todd and Michael indulged my new game lust by playing.
None of us had played before, but the learning process was smoother than I hoped.
Off we go again. Michael started grabbing coin deliveries, Josh went for all different colors, Todd had some arcane plan I didn't follow well and I went for the big ticket white deliveries.

In the finale having delivered 4 of the 15 point deliveries, gave me 90 points alone, plus bonuses for 3 other colors gave me a fairly decisive win.
I had no idea the big tickets would be so crushing when I began, so I have to credit Lady Luck once again.
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3. Board Game: Cyclades [Average Rating:7.54 Overall Rank:131]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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Josh had been wanting to get this played and while I was a bit lukewarm about the game itself, I was happy to help.

Josh, Todd, Michael and myself dug in for a trench fight in the ancient seas of Greece.

I always grab red, so I started with those islands. Josh had yellow, which I vaguely recall from some strategy thread can give you some kind of early win if you lose an island right away.

Didn't happen, but I got Ares the first turn and got myself some extra income from the double cornucopia next door. Then more on next turn grabbing Poseidon and two sea cornucopiae.

Interestingly I never hit the Apollo spot. I managed to build 4 city sections on two areas, but two of them were fortresses. I lost some income after Michael had the perfidy to take over the double cornucopia island I'd grabbed first turn.

Todd finally managed to make the first metropolis, which I sneakily and surprisingly stole when I got the paratrooper monster card. I forget what it's called, but it let me air drop troops and surprise the hell out of him.

Two or three turns later, Lady Luck struck again and the monster that lets you dig through the discards and execute the card appeared. Any guesses which one?
Yes, the big dude that lets you swap one building for a different one.
Fourth building, second metropolis on an island not accessible by the Ares player.
Game over.
Win 3.
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4. Board Game: Metro [Average Rating:6.38 Overall Rank:1454]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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We had 6. This plays 6. Tsuro on steroids. I much prefer it to Tsuro, which I think is mostly sheer luck or at least a lot more luck than this one.

For a simple game, teaching this turned out to be a little like herding cats.
We finally got underway and I kind of showed immediately how easily you can throw your opponents, 1, 2 or 3 point routes to limit their potential.

As it turned out, I managed to connect twice to the center terminals, while only one other player did.
The upshot being The Lady favored me yet again.

Michael was so disgusted at what he felt was the lack of strategy in this game, he refused to play the next filler.

Eric worked second shift and called at 10:30 to see if we'd still be playing. And we were.
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5. Board Game: For Sale [Average Rating:7.22 Overall Rank:260]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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So with four of us left, sans Michael; Rob, Josh, Rich and myself sat down and played this one that Josh pulled out.
Quick explanation for Rich and Rob, I'd played it before.

I managed to snag a lot of mid range cards and the thirty, but only one 20 something card, the 23 I think.

I did manage to manipulate Rich a bit on the last land auction, so I got an 18 for $2 I think.

I kept snagging mid range money cards on the money auction and of course the last $15 with my 30.

Result: Yeah, another win. Tiresome, ain't it?
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6. Board Game: R-Eco [Average Rating:6.64 Overall Rank:1417]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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One of my favorite fillers, I pulled this one out.
NO one else had played it before, but it's not a tough teach. Even Michael got back on board with this one.

People are snagging tokens, but I manage to finagle a few more although Rich and I keep swapping leader positions.
Something I'd not seen before, we go 3 stacks down to the 4 tokens.

I managed to snag the only 5 token and end the game.

Yeah, that's right, I won.
You got a problem with that?
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7. Board Game: Witch's Brew [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:682]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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We had 6 again. Josh made noises about Railways of the World, but favor tipped towards Witch's Brew, which with the expansion plays six.

So an explanation for the newbs and off we went.
This game always cracks me up, it's so much better than Citadels, where someone almost always feels abused by the end of the game.

Extra potions, extra bookshelves and a set of cards for a sixth make the expansion a must.
If you've played, you know how things go, groans, sighs of relief, screams of regret ensued.

In the end, the last turn I took both the thieves and was left able to play both of them.
Result? A 5 point bookshelf and a 5 point bookshelf. Youch.

Did I win? Hell yes. I didn't even need the 6 vials stashed under my player aid sheet.
Luck you say? Of course.
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8. Board Game: In the Year of the Dragon [Average Rating:7.40 Overall Rank:220]
Rik Van Horn
United States
Livonia
New York
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It's 2:30, but we have one more game in us. Josh, Michael and Rob wander off for a 3 player game of their desire and Eric shows interest in the copy of In the Year of the Dragon I brought.

I chuckle to myself knowing the pain this will bring.
I do warn Rich and Eric though. And for first time players, they played excellently. We were neck and neck most of the game and all of us dealt reasonably well with the disasters.
The Great Wall expansion eases the pain a bit by allowing limited actions when the regular one might cost you money.

I did manage to stay ahead on the initiative track alone after about half the game. Selecting first is always powerful, although selecting your people first is not.

Eric made a very strong showing with a couple of monks in his biggest palace at the end and my scoring fell about 3 points behind him.

Until I counted the 15 gold I'd squirreled away. Five more points and Lady brings me home again.

8 games, 8 wins.
Not a run I'm ever likely to see again. But it was fun.
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