LarkList #4: Throw that game!
Jordan Pratt
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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After years of diligent lurking on the Geek, I have come to the conclusion that some people don't like some games.

This revelation was to me (as I'm sure it is now to you, learning it as you are for the first time) a Shocking Discovery.

Maybe, I thought, people might sometimes have to play a game they don't want to play.

And maybe, just maybe, they might want to play in such a way that the game would end more quickly than it usually does.

And perhaps, just maybe-perhaps, some people might want to know how to throw games so that they could do the same thing.

Neat, I thought.

So I have created this List in the Solemn hope that it will be come a Repository for the collective throwing-the-game wisdom of the Geek Community.

For each game, please submit one of the following two types of "throws":

1) The SNEAKY THROW: Only the most paranoid of players suspects what you are up to. You're playing it cool. Inscrutable. Deeeeeevious.

2) The BLATANT THROW: You want everyone to know that you're out to put this game in the ground as quickly as possible. Subtlety, this ain't.

(I was also going to put in the relative of the Blatant Throw, known as the "First-Timer" or "Noob" Throw, whereby you pretend this is your first time to play and throw the game through some incredibly bone-headed move, but unfortunately, this usually leads to the other players just taking pity on you and wanting to play again. Not terribly effective!)


----- NOTE 1 -----

Wouldn't a list on how to win in one move (or whatever) be a tad more interesting, you say? Nah - the problem with winning is that there's always somebody who wants a rematch! Not to mention that if you lose, you always can play the powerful sulk card and get out of an immediate replay.

----- NOTE 2 -----
This is supposed to be a Funny List that is Nevertheless Surprisingly Useful. Oh, and thanks to ynnen for a couple of his (always wonderful) lists that sparked this one.

------
Disclaimer: LarkLists are for fun - they are not, nor do they presume to be, anything Useful or Of Any Terrible Import Whatsoever.
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1. Board Game: Mystery Rummy: Jack the Ripper [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:798]
Jordan Pratt
Canada
Calgary
Alberta
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I'll just start this off with a fairly tame entry. I'm afraid I have very little experience with throwing games ( ::cough:: ) and must rely upon the expertise of others.
---------

SNEAKY: Suspect that someone's got The Ripper Escapes? Time for those Victims you're holding to hit the table...not to mention that Commissioner Resigns card staring you in the face!

BLATANT: Once you know what melds are being sought, force-feed your "opponents" whatever they need via the discard pile. For extra blatantosity, feed them the cards they need even if you could have played on their meld yourself.
 
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2. Board Game: Attack! [Average Rating:5.86 Overall Rank:4457]
Mike Ricotta
Japan
Okinawa
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Dear lord this is a dull game...snooooze...and I love war!

BLATANT: Declare someone your "MORTAL FOE" for some past slight (or they made you play the game) Make a treaty with everyone else. SESTROY your foe with reckless abandon..sure it doesn't end the game any quicker, but it is more fun...

BONUS POINTS: Bang your shoe on the table and yell "I will bury you" Before any attack!
 
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3. Board Game: Dos Rios [Average Rating:6.46 Overall Rank:2036]
James Pinnion
United Kingdom
Peterborough
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---Subtle throw---

Place your settlements in front and behind one other players settlements, thus forcing you to move the river through him to help yourself.

---blatent throw---
earn only dams, and place them in such a way as to gain points for your favoured "opponent". Always ensure you have the top three campesino's to protect the favoured one from desperados. If you have time to spare, occupy high ground near the favoured one, to protect him from attack.
 
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4. Board Game: Tic-Tac-Toe [Average Rating:2.60 Overall Rank:15341]
James Pinnion
United Kingdom
Peterborough
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---Sneaky throw---
Fight for the draw when playing first, go for the centre and then the corners when playing second.

---blatent throw---
If your opponent is playing "x", then use your turn to add to the number of x's.

 
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5. Board Game: Ikusa [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:690]
James Pinnion
United Kingdom
Peterborough
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---Sneaky throw---
I attack his well prepared defences, over the water, with my last remaining dyanamo with help from only 6 ronin, because I couldnt fit more into this small an army.

---Blatent throw---
I attack his well prepared defences with my last remaining dyanamo, and then ninja myself.
 
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6. Board Game: Tigris & Euphrates [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:70]
James Pinnion
United Kingdom
Peterborough
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---subtle throw---
"Oh, the vases have seen of my attack yet again"

---blatent throw---
"Oh I seem to have linked the green vase to two treasures yet again"
 
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7. Board Game: Modern Art [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:227]
James Pinnion
United Kingdom
Peterborough
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---Subtle throw---
Well, I know it ended the round in such a way that their four painting's came in first; but it's improved my position no end.

---blatent throw---
"I bid all my money for that painting"
 
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8. Board Game: Ticket to Ride [Average Rating:7.46 Overall Rank:124] [Average Rating:7.46 Unranked]
Eddie the Cranky Gamer
Canada
Edmonton
Alberta
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Those who aren't very familiar with this game might want to bring up the image to read along.
My wife loves TtR. I'm a little sick of it. Once time we played to introduce her family to the game. The first game dragged on forever, as most of the family has no idea how to make a decision. So, for the second game, GOD NO NOT A SECOND GAME, ahem, sorry, for the second game I chose to try a strategy I thought might do something. It sure did.

I built:
Houston -> New Orleans
Dallas -> Little Rock
Oklahoma City -> Little Rock
Kansas -> Saint Louis
Omaha -> Chicago
Duluth -> Chicago
Duluth -> Toronto
Duluth -> Sault Ste. Marie
Winnipeg -> Sault Ste. Marie

This is pretty easy to do as long as you snatch high demand routes first (i.e Houston -> New Orleans, any route anyone seems to be moving towards) and requires a wide variety of cards. If you leave the 6 space routes to the end, you'll typically have no problems.

For those not paying attention, what this does is leave ONE possible route for anyone to construct an east coast -> midwest/west coast route. As you can imagine, since this was a 5 player game, I left all but one player (my father in law) royally screwed.

My wife was ... displeased with me. I found it made the second game MUCH more interesting.
 
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9. Board Game: Junta [Average Rating:6.75 Overall Rank:949]
Alexander Wesselmann
Germany
Unspecified
Unspecified
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Subtle:
- Evil grin
- Wild cursing
- Threaten people to deprive them of fitting favours from yoour side (like free rides, loaned money, sexual intercourse or friendship) <- that is the subtlety called "Junta" because:

Blatant:
Run from the room crying, while wishing all remaining people to ***********************.

So you see, in a game of Junta, the main goal is to get all the others to throw the game.
 
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10. Board Game: No Thanks! [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:391]
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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SNEAKY THROW: Count down the deck. Point out that we still haven't seen the 33 or 35. Jump on the 34 after it's gone around once or twice.

BLATANT THROW: After watching someone with the 31 and 33 draw the 32 and laugh maniacally doing it, grab it with one chip on it and laugh even more maniacally.

VERY BLATANT THROW: Pick up the entire deck when it's your turn, say "good game, gentlemen", and go fix yourself a sandwich.
 
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11. Board Game: Medici [Average Rating:7.15 Overall Rank:442]
Peter Johns
United States
Houston
Texas
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Blatant Throw.

Now don't get me wrong I like this game very much. But occasionally either due to Lady Luck or bad karma I just want to give up way before the third round of auction hits. This is my method of throwing the game

Buy whatever cards get passed around not caring about the price. This fills your boat up as quickly as possible and gives you time to read a book while everyone else a) Sorts out the auctions that are left and b) Tries to work out why you are playing so irrationally
 
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12. Board Game: Grass [Average Rating:5.95 Overall Rank:4300]
Fritz Schwartz
United States
Modesto
California
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I love this game, but sometimes the rounds go too quickly because we have players who play the Market Close card as soon as they feel they have the slightest advantage. So, one day I secretly took out all five Market Close cards and sat back trying with every fiber of my being not to laugh. The look on the other players' faces as they tried to draw the non-existent Market Close cards to end the game to their advantage was priceless. Of course, at least one of those players will never play Grass with me again, but it was definitely worth it!!!
 
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13. Board Game: Catan [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:279] [Average Rating:7.23 Unranked]
Kurt FromVirginia
United States
Northern Virginia
Virginia
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Blatant Throw - True Story:

4 game version of Settlers: Me, my ultra-competitive next door neighbor, female work colleague and older brother. The later two are non-gamers, and I've casually set up this game night to introduce newly divorced older brother to voluptuous coworker. Neighbor and I are quite fluent with Settlers, older brother had played a few times, coworker completely new.

You could see it like a freight train coming - every single trade opprotunity older brother sells out to impress the coworker. Neighbor and I are too competitive with each other to align into our own block. Result is predictable and not worthy of further discussion.

End story - 2 player games rule.
 
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14. Board Game: Conquest of the Empire [Average Rating:6.28 Overall Rank:3077]
Rob Burns
United States
Troy
MI
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The main reason I got fed up with this game and didn't want to play it with my friends in May 2004 (but had to because they begged) was because players often have to throw the game in order to check the strongest player, who usually has betrayed at least one other player to become the big baddie.

Sneaky throw: Lead a cavalry legion (the legions you make a 'land grab' with) with your Caesar "by accident".

Blatant throw: "Dang it I just led that legion with two cavalry with my Caesar! Of all the stupid things I could have done! Please don't capture him and take all of my lands and all of my guys and a 100 talent bonus and thus be perfectly set up to get so-and-so!"
 
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15. Board Game: Kill Doctor Lucky [Average Rating:6.16 Overall Rank:2065]
Fredrik Eklund
Sweden
Linköping
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SNEAKY-ISH: Never play any failure cards when you're second to last. The person after you will run out of failure cards sooner than expected by trying to save the game. This will end the game quick. Not really sneaky unless you can avoid that someone gleans your cards afterwards to see that you've got a bunch of failure points in your hand.

BLATANT: Always try to play failure cards for way more failure points than necessary. You will run out failure cards and you will deprive the game of failure points needed to last. This will end the game quick.

VERY BLATANT: Never play any failure cards at all. The game can end very quick. Your gaming buddies won't be happy.

In short, mismanaging your failure cards is the key to cutting a game short.
 
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16. Board Game: War of the Ring (First Edition) [Average Rating:7.79 Overall Rank:82]
Ken B.
United States
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Simple--RUN the fellowship like mad, using all your Elven rings to change them to Character dice if necessary. When the hunt is successful, don't take casualties. This is far from subtle, but will end the game for sure.

I don't know of a subtle way to throw this game, though...to lose quickly you pretty much have to play like an idiot. I guess, as the Shadow player, you could be a little TOO aggressive with your armies, moving them out of a few strongholds (like Moria, or Dol Guldur) in the guise of moving against the FP...and they can just move in and claim 4 VP, and you can feign surprise...still, I don't think anyone would fall for that.
 
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17. Board Game: National Pro Hockey [Average Rating:7.38 Unranked]
John Burt
Canada
Saskatoon
Saskatchewan
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Sneaky throw:
Miss a rebound roll, oh darn that scored

Blatant throw:
Start a defenceman at centre

I have done the sneaky one, mainly because I thought my opponent was going to have a heart attack over the game (I was up 8-1 at the time)
 
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18. Board Game: Candy Land [Average Rating:3.17 Overall Rank:15339]
JessA
United States
Southwestern
Michigan
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Subtle Throw (every game):

Is there one parent out there forced to play this game that HASN'T stacked the deck?
 
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19. Board Game: Puerto Rico [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:15]
Robert Birks
Australia
Trafalgar
Victoria
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A cross between sneaky and blatant..

Simply Craft without regard for your own direct benefit. The more often you craft, the more blatant it is. More crafting = more money and more shipping in the game, and a faster end. Of course, the player sitting immediately after you will probably benefit the most and win easily..

Also, dont take roles with money on them, leave them for other players so they'll get stronger faster and therefore win sooner.
 
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20. Board Game: The Scepter of Zavandor [Average Rating:7.01 Overall Rank:841]
DJ Hupp
United States
Portland
Oregon
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Oops, I guess I don't have the as much dust as a bid after all, I should be more careful counting next time... oh well, Im out.

This isnt quite the same as the other items on this list, since the rest of the players can continue playing without you, but it is still a good way to put you out of your misery.
 
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