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Subject: It's bean a hard day's night rss

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Matt
New Zealand
Wellington
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Five players: Myself (I), Meowsqueak (M), Piko (P), Dirty (D), Tegal (T). It was late on a Saturday night; time to teach some (very) casual gamers (D & T) a new game that I was pretty sure they would enjoy. For both of them, their favourite game is For Sale; it is also the only game that they own. Bohnanza is relatively simple to play (once you get your head around the when and where you can place your cards in regard to trading), it is highly social and if nothing else; it is fun!

All players had three turns before the first harvest occurred; I converted some lazy Blue beans for 1 thaler/gold and was away. When able to, D, T & M all purchased a third bean field; so it was P & I that were left with just the two bean fields. Three thaler for so many more options seems like such a great deal; however I've only ever purchased it once and got absolutely slammed in that game; so tend to steer away from the temptation. However, I think the third bean field is great to mix things up between players and can make things a little easier on newbies so they don't get left stranded too often.

P got bogged down in the early-middle of the game with pesky Green beans that she was trying to give away. She eventually started collecting them after having despised them for so long. One thing I enjoy about Bohnanza is the way you get attached to some beans in a game and loathe the sight of others. Then, next game, or even later in the same game; that cursed bean suddenly becomes a treasure to behold.

I managed to convert two cocoa beans and a string of Chili beans in the mid-game; meaning that to date in the game I hadn't had to discard any bean fields that fell short of an efficient return (ie. when the pay-offs are 3beans=1Thaler and 5b=2T and being stuck with 4, only ever having 3b or 5b). This put me in a strong position early; although, the side effect of my good fortune (and shrewd trading I'd like to think!) meant that I was often left with 3 or less cards between turns; reducing my trading power. This soon left me vunerable. My thaler collection greatly reduced in the second half of the game. The newbies; D & T, started harvesting some good mid-range bean fields or 2 -3 thaler. My initial strong position was looking shaky. M, the most experienced Bohnanza player of the lot of us; was starting to pick up his performance also; however, was forced into harvests as no one would trade with him to relieve him of his lesser beans.

My early efficiency really broke down at the end of the game; I only got 1 thaler for my 5 Chili (that really hurts!) and 1 further thaler for 3 Soy, ouch!

We try to put as much suspense into the end-game scoring of hidden scoring games. The way we do it for Bohnanza, is everyone plays one thaler card simultaneously (and quickly), hoping that their opposing player's hands will run bare before theirs....

This is how our scoring went:

I - T - M - D - P
13-13-12-12-11

It was a draw between T & I, due to my strong start and his strong finish. As we had already piled our cards up (and never having been in a draw situation before), M checked the rules and advised that it was the player with the highest number of cards in his hand that won the tie. I remembered that I had 7 in my hand, T advised that he had less than that so conceded the victory. We definitely won't be discarding our hands so quickly after out next game of Bohnanza!

This was my first win at Bohnanza; every time I play it runs more smoothly and is more fun; no doubt it will be back on our table soon!
 
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David
New Zealand
Wellington
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Good report. Actually, P got 10 and I got 11, but it's not critical.

The question of if and when to buy the third field is a tricky one. It's not essential to win however sometimes it does make sense to buy it. Also, the earlier it's bought, the more use you get out of it. It's a difficult decision to make as you never have all the information you need until it's too late.

I think you can win if you buy the third field and use it effectively, however I know you can win without it.

Looking forward to some High Bohn Plus soon :)
 
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Jason Henke
United States
Maple Grove
Minnesota
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Guys, I so want to get down to New Zeland and Austrailia some time to game (Hell, just to see the lands really, but gaming would be the nuts too).

Everytime I see the flags on the 'geek, I think, "man, I so want to visit some time!"

Of course, these feelings are all the more poignant as winter is coming.
 
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Matt
New Zealand
Wellington
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Come on down... let us know when you're coming so we can plan some games; I looked through your ratings; looks like it will be El Grande, Battle Line and Vinci for starters
 
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