A Week of Games at the Beach
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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Last week, my parents invited my wife and me to enjoy a week at the beach with them, at their North Myrtle Beach condo (timeshare). We go once a year with them, usually towards the beginning of the summer.

This year was different than the past couple of years, insofar as we played a game every single night. This usually doesn't happen at beach week, as my sister, her husband, and young nephew usually join us. They aren't big gamers, and most of our time is spent visiting with them, since we don't get to see them all that often. Sadly, they weren't able to join us this year, but it did mean more games got played - so there was an upside!

Below is the list of games we played. You'll see a lot of card games, primarily because that is what my wife prefers. My dad only joined us for the one game; he prefers Sudoku and Solitaire to playing games.

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1. Board Game: Parade [Average Rating:6.93 Overall Rank:702]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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I learned about Parade from this review. The entire family played several hands the night we arrived, my dad included. He won more hands than anyone else... somehow manages to finish with only a few low point cards every time. In another round, my wife Heidi pulled five out of the six 10's and played them to avoid taking very many cards. We were beginning to think she was printing them.

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2. Board Game: Gloom [Average Rating:6.36 Overall Rank:1486] [Average Rating:6.36 Unranked]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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The next night, I pulled out Gloom. My wife and mother both enjoyed looking at the cards more than playing the game. I doubt I'll get them to play this again, which frankly will be alright with me. The game is OK, but there are plenty of other games I'd rather play.

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3. Board Game: At the Gates of Loyang [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:243]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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On one of the hotter days, my mom and I played Loyang in the afternoon; Heidi wasn't interested. It took a while for my mom to catch on, but she played really well once she did. I took three regular customers very early on and almost got myself into trouble. I ended up winning by only one point, because she had taken a loan and I hadn't. She jokingly blamed me for her loss, since I had given her the "bad advice" at the beginning of the game to take out the loan.

The two of us played again the second-to-last night (again, Heidi wasn't interested). My mom had a very rocky start (lack of customers) and was forced to take three loans. I took two. I grabbed the Harvest Helper in the second-to-last round at a very opportune moment for me, which helped tremendously. But by the end of the game, my mom had pretty much recovered, making many deliveries to casual customers. However, the game ended the same way, with me winning by one point.

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4. Board Game: Haggis [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:711]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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This was the week's hit; we played three nights in a row. None of us had played before, but the rules were pretty easy to understand. We had all played Tichu many times, but had a little trouble during our first game because the bombs play differently in Haggis. After the first hand, all three of us had caught on and we played many enjoyable rounds.

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5. Board Game: Archaeology: The Card Game [Average Rating:6.69 Overall Rank:1158]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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We also played a single hand of Archaeology (first time for everybody, myself included). It wasn't a huge hit with Heidi, but my mom and I both liked it. I won by a landslide.

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6. Board Game: El Paso [Average Rating:6.25 Overall Rank:4933]
Doug Bass
United States
Winston-Salem
North Carolina
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The last night we played El Paso. This was not a big hit with anyone, especially not with Heidi and me. We kept taking risks with two dice left and got burned every time. I think we even got burned once with three dice left. We kept passing the dice around like hot potatoes, each of us thinking someone else would roll better. I think my mom only got burned once. This one's charm has worn off for me - I may sell it.

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