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Subject: Geek of the Week #60 - Werner Stangl (Wernazuma) rss

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Manuel Perez Ron
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Introducing Geek of the Week number 60, thumbsupWerner Stanglthumbsup

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/user/Wernazuma

I contact with him during summer 2005. He was going to spend one month in Seville to complete his studies and asked if there was a group of eurogamers in the city to join us to play. We had just formed one group of players and he arrived here with a pack of games (over a dozen!).

Although I don't know if he found the papers that was seeking in Indian Archive, I can say he got to influence in our eurogamers group recently formed. We got delighted with many of his games and everyone grab a copy of them in the stores, increasing our range of games. From then, the group has played regularly every wednesday afternoon and increasing the number of members.

Because he gave our group a big impulse to continue playing and his high activity playing games by web, a recently popular way to play eurogames, I guess he must be my successor.

Here is his bio he send me:

wernazuma wrote:
I was born in 1979, but my real, as in gaming, life – beyond the inevitable Ludo and Mikado plays with my parents and the traditional Austrian Schnapsen – started around 1985 with „Öl für uns alle“ (Oil for us all), an economic game inherited from my older brothers, but also other classic late 80s games like "Escape from Atlantis", "Targui" etc.

Then I focused more on RPG and early computer games. One of those, Sid Meier’s Civilization I, made me return to board games at the age of ~14 – I bought AH’s Civilization, which in turn led to the acquisition of other “heavy weights”, such as Diplomacy, Macchiavelli, Advanced Civ or Republic of Rome.

People moved away, my own interests also shifted a bit, a new relation, soon expecting a child, all that made me forget games a bit. But it turned out that my g/f also liked board games (we needed more than a year to find out. Go figure!). We started with The Settlers Card Game and Babel in late 2002, but soon, esp. after finding this site, our collection exploded to the current level of ~140 games.

For 3 years, we regularly played, about once a week with several groups, and daily played among us. But again, many friends moved away (most of us finished our master studies in the meanwhile). Also, my g/f’s drive for games diminished since expected our second child, i.e. since fall 2005.
Not having many possibilities for f2f games, I resorted to PBW formats, especially on SBW and MaBiWeb. What started with occasional few games turned into somewhat of an obsession with dozens of simultaneous games of Amun-Re, Samurai, Hansa, and now also Santiago.

At home, I’m busy teaching my son how to play as well traditional games like chess (currently only lesson: how the pieces are allowed to move) and Kalaha, but also “German games”. He’s now able to play basic Carcassonne and Cartagena, and it's fun playing with him. And, of course, as every 4-year-old, he is almost unbeatable in Memory.


Here are the two thruts and one lie:

Quote:

When I was ~8 years old, I loved easter eggs so much that I managed to eat 15 eggs in a single day.

My g/f won 10 out of 11 regional swimming titles in a single contest.

Not only my nick Wernazuma is a tribute to the Aztecs, I also speak Nahuatl fluently.


I think I know what is his lie, but will let you guess it before.

I have a few questions for him:

1. We know you are a play by web addict, but, how many games play you front to front? Is many different to play by web a game to play front to front?

2. If you were going to Essen during game fair, what are going to do first when you go into expo?

3. Being a Eurogamer, Wallenstein is the introducing to wargaming?

4. As Hispanist, do you would like Carolus V period when Austria and Spain was under the same King? What period of spanish history do you prefer?

5. You don't rate any game with 10. Are looking still the perfect game, the holy grail?

Still more questions to do, but you can begin with this pack of 5.

Congratulations! I hope you enjoyed this week as I did.
 
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Mark Crocker
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Two things I know.

1. He's designed a card game..."Teotlatolli". It's listed here. and it's free.

2. Played him in a SpeilByWeb "Wallenstein". I think we attacked each other twice apeice...and every battle ended in devasting the province.

Wernazuma...if you ever see a new game of Wallenstein on SpeilByWeb titled "password smashword" , join it, and there will be our rematch.
 
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Werner Stangl
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Mark,
actually, I even participated in two password-smashword games (1 and 3), though only in the latter we killed each other off.
 
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Werner Stangl
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perezron wrote:


1. We know you are a play by web addict, but, how many games play you front to front? Is many different to play by web a game to play front to front?


I play face to face very rarely in the last months, maybe once every 2 weeks, but I certainly would like to play more.
And yes, I think it is a very different feeling. Of course, the very important factor of socializing is absent. During our game nights, we would also talk about our private lives, tell jokes etc.. This isn’t possible online.
On the more technical level, there are games that work better f-2-f and others I like better online.
Hoity Toity is pretty dull online, since the outguessing aspect works better if you “know your Pappenheimers” (this is a German saying and has nothing to do with the game Wallenstein but is a quote from Friedrich Schiller’s Wallenstein play).
Other games don’t suffer or even improve in PBW style, esp. there is no problem of analysis paralysis (Tikal)
Wallenstein is much more streamlined in the online-implementation, but you lack the sound of cubes falling into and out of (hopefully mine) the tower. PBW just can’t give you that.
Also, I can’t even nearly get as upset when losing online as I can face to face.
A plus of PBW games is that I can make a break during my daily work for a minute, make my move(s) and get back to work, a little refreshed. This is good for my working morale .
This is why I’m not so much a fan of real time online games à la Brettspielwelt – I need the time for a whole game but lack the socializing factor of a f-2-f game.

Quote:
2. If you were going to Essen during game fair, what are going to do first when you go into expo?


Difficult question, I haven’t been to Essen yet, but I guess I’d try out some novelties and then quickly move to marvel at the high stacks of shrink-wrapped games in the shops and start buying. Essen is a danger to me, like Vegas is a danger for gamblers. I love shiny fresh smelling games and get high at the sound of popping tokens out of their cardboard.

Quote:
3. Being a Eurogamer, Wallenstein is the introducing to wargaming?


I think that’s a question only a war-gamer can really answer. Personally I love Wallenstein as a “Euro” but it didn’t make me dive into wargaming. I like games with war as a theme, but I don’t enjoy the simulation aspect of more complex wargames.

Quote:
4. As Hispanist, do you would like Carolus V period when Austria and Spain was under the same King? What period of spanish history do you prefer?


Well, I’m actually more a Hispanoamericanista than a Hispanista, but I do have an opinion. As most great man, Charles V is difficult to judge. What I can say is that I’m certainly not a friend of his take on Protestantism. He’s not exclusively to blame for the following centuries of religious civil war, but he certainly set the fire (kept alive by his successors in both countries, Spain and Austria). His “sacco di Roma” wasn’t really heroic either...
On the second part of the question, Spanish history has many very interesting aspects. Of course, my interest lies much in Spanish colonial history, esp. the 16th century. The 2nd Republic+Spanish Civil War is another outstanding chapter, and last but not least, Spanish medieval history, both Christian and muslim, is very rich, though I am rather ignorant on the subject.

Quote:
5. You don't rate any game with 10. Are looking still the perfect game, the holy grail?


I’m not sure that there can be such a holy grail. There is a very small number of games close to perfection, but there’s no game that covers all my (gaming) moods. Occasionally, the greatest complex game can be “too complicated” or “too long” after an exhaustive day, the funniest light weight game can be “no challenge today”.
Ingenious comes close because it’s never too long, makes you think yet isn’t complicated, but it’s not perfect because sometimes I just want a bit of theme.
Puerto Rico comes close because it has so clever mechanics and I think it’s really thematic, but it isn’t perfect because still after many, many plays, we started using strategic patterns and it doesn’t hit the table that often anymore. I had Puerto Rico as a 10 for a while, though.
Wallenstein is so original with its combat system, it fulfills my belligerent side and serves my gusto for Euro-games. But sometimes, just sometimes, the planning can be somewhat tedious.
So I guess, no game will ever satisfy all my gaming needs and thus a 10 from me may be more of a temporary vote (which contradicts the very BGG definition of a “10”)


 
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Javi Santos
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Hi Werner,

I just wanted to congratulate you for being the new Geek of the Week.
I have to say that my first introductory in the group I play now were with Perezron, Werner, and some others. Thanks to Wernazuma I discovered such wonderful games as Meuterer, Taj Mahal, Wallenstein, Santiago or Ra, among some others I cannot remember.

Could you tell us one game that has lately given you the feeling of wow!, that's great!?

About the truths and lie... I would say that you don't speak Nahuatl (neither fluently nor just a word!) I can certainly believe you had 15 easter eggs and your g/f winning so many titles.

I hope to see you soon again in Seville,

Javi
 
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Werner Stangl
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Hola Javi,

barnyams36 wrote:

Could you tell us one game that has lately given you the feeling of wow!, that's great!?


Actually, I cannot. First of all, my collection didn't grow much since my last Seville-trip, and from those few, there was none really that great. Thurn&Taxis and TtR-Märklin are certainly solid games, but not really "wow". But I hae hopes that "Leonardo da Vinci" will be the next "wow" game.


Quote:

I hope to see you soon again in Seville,


Vamos a ver when I will be able. But if the particle accelerator warps you to Austria, you know where to make a stop.
 
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Hi Werner!

I notice you have Bonnie 'Prince' Billy listed among your favorite musical artists. Do you like his more recent, Bonny 'Prince' Billy work? Or do you prefer his earlier Palace Brothers/Music/etc. albums? Have you ever seen any of the movies in which he appears as an actor?
 
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Werner Stangl
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jtakagi wrote:
Hi Werner!

I notice you have Bonnie 'Prince' Billy listed among your favorite musical artists. Do you like his more recent, Bonny 'Prince' Billy work? Or do you prefer his earlier Palace Brothers/Music/etc. albums? Have you ever seen any of the movies in which he appears as an actor?


Since Bonnie 'Prince' Billy isn't really played much on our Austrian radio stations () I only know the 2 CDs I personally acquired ("I see a darkness" and "Master and everyone"), so I can't really say.

I had no idea he is an actor too - now let me ask a question: In which movies? And does he play sustaining roles there?
 
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Manuel Perez Ron
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Another 5 pack of questions, related to your country:

6. Can you define the austrian player? Reflexive or passionate?

7. How is the game state in your country? Are so popular eurogames like in Germany?

8. If you were 8 years kidnapped and could take one game with you, what game would choose (think you will have only this game to play it again and again)?

9. Is there a game of the year in Austria? If yes, what do you think about last game nominated? If not, what do you would like to be choose as Game of the Year in Austria?

10. What is the three most popular games in Austria? And the most popular eurogame?
 
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Werner Stangl
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perezron wrote:
Another 5 pack of questions, related to your country:


Let me first say, that I'm not really competent to answer these questions. I am not active in Austrian board gaming scene. Possibly the next gotw will be more competent. But I'll do my best to answer some of them nonetheless.

Quote:

7. How is the game state in your country? Are so popular eurogames like in Germany?

One would think so, but they aren't popular in the same grade. Sure, most younger people will know 1-2 Eurogames (Settler, Carcassonne), Once it happened to me that I found out that someone I knew from a completely different context (work, university) really did know "Ursuppe". But then again, that person had gamer friends in Germany... Still, I can't think I'd happen to coincidently stumble across a person who knows Ursuppe in Spain. laugh

Quote:
8. If you were 8 years kidnapped and could take one game with you, what game would choose (think you will have only this game to play it again and again)?

Tough, Ingenious springs to my mind, but I'm not sure. Let me think about it for a while.

[quote]9. Is there a game of the year in Austria? If yes, what do you think about last game nominated? If not, what do you would like to be choose as Game of the Year in Austria? [/quote]
There is an award (Spiel der Spiele) given in Austria, but it isn't focused on gamers, more on families/kids (much more so than the Spiel des Jahres). I don't give much for the award and have to look up who was the winner.
This year: Knizia's "Tal der Abenteurer" (?); 2005: TransEuropa ( gulp ), 2004: Ingenious (OK, sometimes a blind chicken finds a corn), 2003: King Arthur ( gulp )

Quote:
10. What is the three most popular games in Austria? And the most popular eurogame?


Certainly "Schnapsen" is the most common card game (what "Mus " is in Spain) with competitions in every village. From the more modern games, the already traditional DKT (Austrian derivate of Monopoly) and Risk are certainly very popular.
The most popular Eurogame, by far, is The Settlers of Catan.
 
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Michel Boucher
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Quote:
The most popular Eurogame, by far, is The Settlers of Catan.


Werner, congratulations.

I very much enjoyed a fairly quick (eight day) visit to Austria in November 1973...Salzburg first (three days) and then Vienna (five days) which I simply loved. Maybe it was because there were few tourists

My question is, how is wargaming in Austria? I know of at least one wargamer in Austria but exactly how solitary is he, surrounded, I guess, by Eurogamers
 
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Robert Zurfluh
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Werner,

what's up with the avatar? Wilhelm Busch,...oder? Oder nicht? Aren't you too young to grow up with his stories? But then again, didn't we all read Max&Moritz (and other not-so-funny stories, like Struwelpeter)?

So, what's the story behind the avatar?
 
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alsandor wrote:


I very much enjoyed a fairly quick (eight day) visit to Austria in November 1973...Salzburg first (three days) and then Vienna (five days) which I simply loved. Maybe it was because there were few tourists


I guess the few tourists, that was in 1973, but yes, November should still be absolutely fine. There's some other places in Austria too, which I think deserve a visit. From the urban sites, my hometown Graz (I may be a bit biased, but I really think it's worth it), for nature the Alpine national parks, they're marvelous. If you like wine, a trip to southern Styria and Burgenland certainly would be no mitake.

Quote:

My question is, how is wargaming in Austria? I know of at least one wargamer in Austria but exactly how solitary is he, surrounded, I guess, by Eurogamers


As I said before, I have no real overview of the Austrian gamer community. The fact that I don't know of any wargamer circle doesn't mean that there is no scene for it. But for sure, Eurogames are much, much more popular. Yuo may find a good number of Eurogames in ordinary toy stores, but hardly any (i.e. NO) wargame.
 
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Noaceyet wrote:
Werner,
what's up with the avatar? Wilhelm Busch,...oder? Oder nicht? Aren't you too young to grow up with his stories? But then again, didn't we all read Max&Moritz (and other not-so-funny stories, like Struwelpeter)?

So, what's the story behind the avatar?


You're right, that's "Lehrer Lämpel" from Max&Moritz. Menos mal (how does this translate to English?) that I'm too young to grow up with his stories. Otherwise, in my life I've had had to fight in the Risorgimiento, Austro-Prussian war, WWI and WWII. surprise

I have to correct you on Wilhelm Busch: The Struwwelpeter stories are not from Busch but from Dr. Heinrich Hoffmann and are pedagogical (well, 19th century 'pedagogical' ), while Busch's work is satirical. Hoffmann pushes down the moral through the throat while Busch's ending of Max&Moritz is rather subtile: All those who were victims of Max&Moritz's deeds react very cynical and bigotted, I doubt that was meant to be positive (Teacher Lämpel says: "Now that's a good example!")
And many of Busch's stories are not only/not at all meant for children. Max&Moritz isn't even my favorite. You should read "The Pious Helen" or "Saint Anthony of Padua", really good laughs (the second one unless you're devout Catholic).

I chose the avatar because sometimes my friends say I can sometimes have an "obnoxious teacher-like attitude", and Lehrer Lämpel is a representative of that caste.
 
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Fraser
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Hi Werner,

I try to remember to ask each Geek of the Week these gaming related questions so here's the slightly modified GeekSpeak BoardGameSpeak Hook questions for you:
Favourite game for d10-2 players
Favourite game for d10-3 players
Favourite game for d10-4 players
Favourite game for d10-5 players
Favourite game for d10-6 players
Favourite game for d10-7 or more players (and you may choose a Party Game here although I wouldn't meeple - my other confession is that I would be hard pressed to list just one game for most of the above)

Also Word Association Football , I will list a word and you list a game or games that you associate with it. If you like you can expand and tell us if you like it/them or hate it/them and possibly why. Mostly the same list as before.

Space ships
Witches
Trains
Transport (may include trains)
Workers (paid or otherwise)
Trading
Building
Pink
Theme
Ships
Money
Purple
Government
Vampires
Infrastructure
Dice
Dinosaurs
Gemstones
Dragons
Beer
Wands

And last but not least, what are the last five games that you have played?
 
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Werner Stangl
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Good questions!

Favourite game for d10-2 players - Ingenious
Favourite game for d10-3 players - Wallenstein
Favourite game for d10-4 players - Ingenious
Favourite game for d10-5 players - El Grande
Favourite game for d10-6 players - Power Grid
Favourite game for d10-7 or more players - 6 nimmt!



Space ships - Starship Catan
Witches - Zauberstauber (Techno Witches)
Trains - TtR. Although no brian burner, I really like it. But it really needs to get expansions every now and then or it becomes boring.
Transport (may include trains) - Serenissima. Transport made me automatically think of those nice galleys shipping little plastic cubes.
Workers (paid or otherwise) - Capitol. The association doesn't come from the game itself but from the box. I instantly thought of the constructing scene there.
Trading - Civilization. I love the chaotic trading mechanic, the cheating, the excitement of successfully trading away some nasty disaster...
Building - Alhambra
Pink - Through the Desert
Theme - Euphrates and Tigris. For the complete lack of it.
Ships - Mississippi Queen
Money - Monopoly
Purple - Santiago. All the colors in that game range from black over dark grey to purple and "nature white". What were they thinking?
Government - Die Macher
Vampires - Few Eurogames out there with the theme. But you know what, I immediately thought of Vabanque because the guy on the box surely is a disguised vampire.
Infrastructure - Power Grid
Dice - Yahtzee
Dinosaurs - Evo
Gemstones - Diamant. A game I never could understand where the fun lies. To me, it's extremely dull.
Dragons - Blue Moon. I believe the producer had some excessive dragons to get rid of. I can't explain otherwise why the scoring figures are dragons.
Beer - Goldbräu.
Wands - can't think of one.

Quote:
And last but not least, what are the last five games that you have played?


I'll give only those I played face to face: Odin's Ravens, The Settlers of Catan, Thurn&Taxis, 6 nimmt!, Republic of Rome (really! The first time in years)
 
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Fraser
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Wernazuma wrote:

Favourite game for d10-3 players - Wallenstein


So Wallenstein plays well with only three players? I suppose I had never really thought about it and just assumed it would be better with five or four players. That could be a good excuse to get it off the shelves meeple
 
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Karlsen wrote:
Wernazuma wrote:

Favourite game for d10-3 players - Wallenstein


So Wallenstein plays well with only three players? I suppose I had never really thought about it and just assumed it would be better with five or four players. That could be a good excuse to get it off the shelves meeple


Well, to some extent you're right. From pure gameplay, it is superior with 4-5, but as a generally outstanding game for me, with three it has the advantage of taking less time - the only problem of the game for me is that it takes quite a while to play it.

Just make sure to remove Brandenburg and Kurpfalz (or only Brandenburg if you find it too croded), and the respective event cards. That improves the game for 3 players a lot.
 
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Karlsen always forgets to add:

Favourite game for d10-1 player
 
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Dou you really want to know?
 
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Michel Boucher
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Wernazuma wrote:
Dou you really want to know?


Sure cool
 
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Congratulations Werner!

Four questions for you:
- What next few games would you like to see added to the list of ones available to play on spielbyweb?
- Which popular Eurogame is the most overrated in your opinion?
- Which is your favorite boardgame that features the country of Austria in its map?
- Do you travel outside of Austria much? Have you ever been to a game conference?

Enjoy your week in the limelight!
 
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Congrats on being GoTW...

Two questions...

1) If you could travel to any time in the past and witness one event, which event would you choose (assume you could understand any language spoken)?

2) The same question, but applied towards the future?
 
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alsandor wrote:
Karlsen always forgets to add:

Favourite game for d10-1 player


Well Michel, I could always add it for future Geek of the Week candidates.
 
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fehrmeister wrote:

- What next few games would you like to see added to the list of ones available to play on spielbyweb?


There's already a number of games in the pipe. Certainly, I almost cannot await El Grande to come out.
China is another one I'd like to see in the future. I think it's more likely that it'll be realized on MaBiWeb than on SBW.

Quote:
- Which popular Eurogame is the most overrated in your opinion?


Overrated is such a personal category. For example, I don't really "love" Euphrat&Tigris or La Città, but I acknowledge the qualities of those games for others.

Quote:
- Which is your favorite boardgame that features the country of Austria in its map?

That's easy: Wallenstein

Quote:

- Do you travel outside of Austria much? Have you ever been to a game conference?


I used to travel more before I had a family. Now it's all more difficult and expensive. So I mostly leave Austria for working purposes (going to archives or libraries) and to the near Adriatic Sea or Slovenia.
But it's not that bad, I already know good parts of the Americas and Europe.

Quote:
Enjoy your week in the limelight!


Thanks, I do.
 
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