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This is, perhaps, a rather odd session report. Acquire is one of my very favourite games, and it gets fairly regular airings when the kids come back home for Christmas, etc. But other than that, opportunities to play such games seem to be few and far between.
I am very active on a non-games forum (for the tennis player Andy Murray, FWIW), and recently started to run a few board games on there as a means of fostering the communty spirit. Besides which, it is fun. I picked games that I knew would work reasonably well in that sort of setting from experience in PBM games from 25 or so years ago. One of those games is Acquire.
Our first game featured 6 players who had never played it before. The game thread can be found here: http://www.andymurray.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2228", so you can follow the game in gory detail if you wish. Some of the banter shows how succesful this approach has proven from a community perspective, if not necessarily for the quality of game play. As you may imagine, some picked it up quicker than others (one seems to have failed to get it at all). It is a pretty good example of how not to play the game, and quite amusing for that. However, you should not be too hard on the players – we were all newbies at some games once, and probably all asked dumb questions, or did dumb things. The difference is that our naiveties were in private, not on a forum thread.
Amongst the erors made here include people merging chains for no good reason at all (other than to see how it worked, perhaps), people merging the wrong chains, etc.
Things have moved on, and we are now onto our 4th acquire game. The standard of play has improved considerably, but there are still plenty of mistakes being made. You can fairly quickly spot the natural games players in the crowd. I may do another session report from some later games in the future.