Games I played at Camas Con
Ernest S
United States
Renton
Washington
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Twice a year I join other gamers from Washington (& a few from Oregon) on a pilgrimage up the narrow, twisty (and sometimes snowy) roads of the Cascade Mountains to the remote & beautiful Camas Meadows Bible Camp near the small hamlet of Cashmere. Why? To play games... of course . This past weekend was Camas Con. This was the 8th time I have made this trip to attend Camas Con. Attendance was down a little this year, but we were still nearly 40 strong: guys & gals; ages ranging from 10 to 50+.

One of the things I like about this event is that with 40+ people in attendance we often have a few hundred games available for play, many of them the latest releases. It is my chance to try new games (prior to purchase) or play old favorites that I don’t own. Prior to driving up, I made a list of games I wanted to try for the first time, or play again. Top of the list were:

Games I had not played before but wanted to try:
K2
Alien Frontiers
Gears of War
LotR: TCG
Ascending Empires
The Resistance

These games I had played, but wanted to play at least one of them during the weekend:
Twilight Imperium
Runewars
War of the Ring

This geeklist is a list of the games I did get to play and my thoughts on each of them.
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1. Board Game: Asara [Average Rating:7.03 Overall Rank:914]
Ernest S
United States
Renton
Washington
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We arrived around 3:30pm on Friday.

The first game I played was NOT have on my "too play" list, but there were three others getting ready to play and they asked if I would join. So Brad, Rachael, Clint & I sat down to play this game.

It was the first time I'd played this game. It's a pretty straight forward game of maximizing your purchases to build the most, or tallest, or fanciest tower. Brad & I tied, however he won the tie-breaker by having the most money left over.
 
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2. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.27 Overall Rank:253]
Ernest S
United States
Renton
Washington
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I'd played this game before and it is a pretty quick one. Brad, Rachael, Cameron and I played this one. Oh-for-2 on my list of games I wanted to play.
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3. Board Game: Gears of War: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:398]
Ernest S
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Renton
Washington
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Finally I got to play a game that I had on my "too play" list. I was hoping to test this one out as a possible solo game (at home) as well as one that my game group would get lots of use out of.

Scruffy set up and taught James, Jessie and I the game. We played the 2nd senario and it was a blast. We managed to make it all the way to the very last room. But in the end the Locusts were just to numerous and too over-powering.

I certainly can see purchasing this game at some point. It fit the critiea I listed above (fun solo & group game). It also fits my interest in thematic games & appears ripe for expansions. However, there are a couple of games on the purchase list above it.
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4. Board Game: The Resistance [Average Rating:7.33 Overall Rank:216]
Ernest S
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Renton
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This was the last game of the night for me. Scruffy, Matt, Jessie, James, Clint and I played a quick round of this. The Resistance lost as the spies managed to sabotage three of our missions. It came down to the last mission and because I was unable to convince them that Jessie was James was the spy, and not me, we lost.

This was a fun, quick (20 minutes) game that I can see using in Youth Group at my church.

By this time it was past mid-night and I was tired. I know, for many of the gamers there was still another 3 hours of good gaming time left; but I needed to head up to my hammock in the loft.
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5. Board Game: Alien Frontiers [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:191]
Ernest S
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Renton
Washington
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SATURDAY MORNING:

First game of the day was Alien Frontiers. I had this one high on my "too try" list. It did not disappoint. Andrew taught the game to Jon, Clint and I. It was easy to pick up and we had a lot of fun playing. I was the first to get a settlement on the planet and took the area that gave me the ability to move faster on the colonist hub. I did not generate a lot of resource, nor did I get many alien tech cards ( had one early on that gave me a free resource); but because I got the colonist hub early and was able to use it all game long, I managed to win the game.

I like this game a lot. The theme (space); game play (dice, worker placement, area control); the bits ("ooooh! Shinny!") all fit together to provide a great gaming experience.
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6. Board Game: Runewars [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:188]
Ernest S
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Renton
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Highlight of the weekend for me. Our 4-player game lasted about 5 hours. Jacob was the Humans; Brad was the Undead; Jonathan was the Uthuk; and I was the elves.

I'd played this game before (over a year ago) so I knew sort of how to play. Though my first turn set me back quite a bit as I messed up the Orders sequence. I'd try to do something and Jacob would say, "You can't do that." This happened about three times in the first year.

I had read that many times this game plays with very little conflict as the goal is to get dragon runes. Armies are mostly used to protect the runes you get and maybe to steal a rune from someone else in the late game. however, our game had battle after battle, all game long. This did not bode well for the weakling elves who really suck at battle.

I spent most of my effort getting heroes and questing for runes. There was one point in the late game where I had 4 runes and the ability to get two more within a pretty short time frame using my heroes. However Jacob took that moment to crash through my weak forces and steal two runes from me. Then his hero defeated my hero and assumed his ability to get one more rune. He promptly used that ability and won the game. Brad revealed that he would have won the next season. It was a very close game.

I like this game, almost as much as Twilight Imperium 3. It has an epic feel; and each race plays differently. Also, the board and bits look just awesome.


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7. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:76] [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked]
Ernest S
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Renton
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I like this game, but it was not one I would have sought out during this weekend. However, Courtney was looking for a light game that he could take back to Indonesia with him. He had read about Dominion and wanted to learn it. So I sat down with him and Chuck and we played 2 games.

I do enjoy Dominion and it was fun to introduce it to a couple of new players. They both picked it up real fast. Chuck even won the first game.
 
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8. Board Game: The Lord of the Rings: The Card Game [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:113] [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked]
Ernest S
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This was another game I was eager to try out.

Brad and I picked it up and taught ourselves how to play. Neither of us had played before and we got a number of the rules wrong. Later in the game Matt came over and set us right where we had made mistakes. The errors apparently ended up in our favor and we were able to complete the first quest.

I would like to play this game again. It felt thematic and it was challenging trying to decide which hero to commit to the quest vs. fighting and defense.

By this time it was near 1:00am (12:00 after the time change) and I headed up to bed.
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9. Board Game: Survive: Escape from Atlantis! [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:256]
Ernest S
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Renton
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SUNDAY MORNING:

Race, Roland and I played this game before breakfast.

It was a nice, quick, screw your neighbor type game that I would certainly play again.
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10. Board Game: Gears of War: The Board Game [Average Rating:7.47 Overall Rank:398]
Ernest S
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Second session of GoW. This time Brad, Roland, Darrell and I took on the first scenario. The others had not played before and I was somewhat new. A couple of on-lookers provided varying degrees of help and we made it through the game alright.

We managed to close the emergence hole at the end of the hallway and found ourselves surrounded by Locusts. It looked like certain death. And it was… but not before we managed to kill all but two of the enemies. It was nail-biting fun.
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11. Board Game: Ninjato [Average Rating:7.24 Overall Rank:738]
Ernest S
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Renton
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Last game of the day. Jacob, Jonathan and Clint revisited a Ninjato, a game they had all played earlier in the weekend. It was my first game and due to my unfamiliarity with it and due to some bad-luck card play I ended up a distant 4th.

I found it to be an OK game and will need to play it again to see if it appeals to me. The mechanics are similar in a lot of ways to Stone Age, a game I do enjoy a lot.
 
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