An impromptu gathering of 3 yeilded a game of Settlers, and Carcassonne (session here).
Now, let's hear about our players:
Myself: A newbie to the board game hobby. I used to love Monopoly, and recently got into Catan, and that opened up the way to Carcassonne. I've begun prosthelizing to my friends about board gaming, and it's been going slow, but I managed to get a few people interested. We have a group that gets together semi-regularly (almost weekly, now) to play games - a group that friend A and B are part of.
A: Not a huge gamer, but appreciates a good game. Has brought Probe to our group of friends, and it has taken it's hold pretty well. Sort of a newbie to Carcassonne, but has played it over 3 times - which, in my opinion is enough to know what's going on. Played White.
B: HUGE competitor. Plays family Scrabble games, and competitive Magic: The Gathering. Recently won a Carcassonne tourney at our FLGS. Played Blue.
So we settled in, and decided to throw in the Fishermen expansion just for fun. Instead of laying the tiles out, I got a cloth bag to put them in to make it easier.
Brick and Ore were hard to come by, and Wood and Sheep were plentiful.
Blue took an early lead with some roads and the first new settlement. This took way longer than we had experienced before, since brick was so scarce. White expanded and got his first new settlement up as Blue was getting Longest Road.
Eventually, I got Sheep Harbor, which also happened to have a fishing port (8) on it.
After a few more rolls, I noticed Blue had 6 points on the board, longest road, and 2 soldiers up. He also had one development card that he hadn't turned up for a while and he'd had the robber on him, so I knew it wasn't a soldier. It must've been a victory point.
Sheep harbor helped a bit, and I kept the pressure on Blue by stealing a card with every 3 fish I got. Before long I had a 3:1 harbor, and two more Fishing Ports, (4 and 10). Menawhile Blue ad White each had a Fishing Port on 9.
I bit my tongue, though I wanted to point out that Blue was teetering on Victory. Luckily, White was already after Blue because Blue kept playing the robber on us (which is not an immoral play, but kept me slightly out of White's sights). I had less towns and cities on the board, but I had pulled a Victory Point early on. A quick VP estimate put Blue at 9, White at 7 and me at 6 (7 with my hidden VP).
Blue rolled, and got a fish. He reached in the bag, and pulled a tile, keeping his fist clenched around it. He was finishing something he was saying within the conversation we were having about non-game stuff, and I just blurted out "Boot!". Blue seemed confused, and then he realized what I was saying before he looked at the tile. He slowly revealed the tile, and it was indeed the boot.
I built another town. And for a few turns we kept the pressure on Blue. meanwhile, White had lunged for the Wood Port, thereby cutting off any hope I had to steal Longest Road from Blue. I was massing cards, though.
On my next turn, I had enough for a City, and almost enough for a development card. I had 2 soldiers up, and if I could get Largest Army, that'd slide me into the win. I got a City and a Development card. It was a VP. I slide in for Victory.
If I had gotten a soldier instead of a VP, I'd have had to wait another turn before I could play him. Another turn which might've let Blue win.
A good game, even though at some point I'd resigned myself to losing because Blue had 9 points. I figured we'd finish it out and play another, but it goes to show that you just have to keep playing, and you'll have a chance to win.