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Subject: An Epic Game to End a Gaming Relationship rss

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Joe Pastuzyn
United States
Midland
Michigan
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My wife and I have been gaming with various groups for years and when a new FLGS opened in Freeland, Michigan we checked it out during their Wednesday night open gaming. It was there we met Andrew who was transplanted from Oklahoma to the middle of Michigan for a temporary work assignment. He was looking for a gaming group and we seemed to fit the bill. We played a number of games over the past few months with him teaching us Power Grid and we introducing him to Fresco to name just a couple. He’ll be heading back home next week, so we spent the day playing Indonesia, a game he’s had for a while, but was unable to play because of its length. We provided the chili and beverages and Andy provided the game.

The players were Andy, Grace and me and the setting was a Fall Sunday in October. Andy took the time to explain the rules and we helped with setup. In the first era Andy worked on setting up rice plantations and a shipping company while I opted for building a shipping empire with a little rice to make some money. Grace took some spice and shipping. Unfortunately, my shipping was not near the meager rice plantations I had so I had to share my earnings. Andy forced a merger among shipping companies and I cashed out mine figuring I needed a larger source of income. Andy was pushing the merger track by the end of era “A” and I had a 5X multiplier on start player bidding.

In the second era things got interesting in a hurry. Andy jumped into a merger among his spice and rice companies making a siap faji company (micro-waveable rice dishes). I grabbed some rubber plantations and Grace went for more shipping. Each of us got into a merger during the era as we tried to figure out what everything was worth. I could tell from the bidding between Grace and Andy during one turn that they had significantly more money than I did. How I fell behind I wasn’t sure, but I needed to get back into the running. As the second era was coming to a close, Grace made a merger bid for my rubber plantations. I ran the bidding up quite high and then cashed out for a net of about $250. By the end of the era I was left with a siap faji company and three open slots and a good amount of cash. Andy was rolling in money with a mix of companies. Grace had shipping and rubber.

As the third era began I managed to get the start player. Andy and Grace got into a merger fight for shipping and the bidding got way up there. Grace took Andy’s companies and she wound up owning all the shipping companies on the board. Andy merged again grabbing Grace’s siap faji company creating one with five deeds. I stayed out of these fights. During acquisition I grabbed three of the four available oil companies. Looked liked the third era was going to be short-lived. Each of us operated and the income seemed to make the money situation closer. I had expansion equal to “2” so I dropped a number of new oil producers on the map. The next “year” would be the last with only three companies left. It was an adroit little ballet in terms of turn order, and operation order. Andy nipped a couple of closer cities to my oil producers, forcing me to ship a bit further than I would have wanted to. Grace was reaping the rewards of owning all the shipping lanes. We kept these monies off to the side as they would be doubled for end game scoring.

When the smoke cleared the game ended with Grace at $1,764, Andy at $1,653 and me at $1,459. For our first game of Indonesia we thought these to be pretty close. The game lasted for over 3.5 hours as advertised, but the game kept your attention and focus. We found it a pleasant way to spend the afternoon. We’ll miss gaming with Andy and wish him well on his return home. This large scale game was a fitting last game for us.
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Железный комиссар
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
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I don't often read session reports, but this one is pretty neat. Great send-off for Andy.
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jumbit
China
Zhejiang
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"To end a relationship" I thought this was going to be another whiny diatribe by someone who can't get over the thought that conflict games are just games. Leaving pleasantly surprised.
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Steve McIlhatton
New Zealand
Palmerston North
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nice session... don't think of the gaming relationsip as ended.. just think of it as interrupted
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Andy K.
United States
Sacramento
California
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Thanks for the write-up, Joe.

I was thrilled to get to play Indonesia. The game has a reputation for length and heavy economics, but I think we all found it quite playable rules-wise. Indonesia has a beautiful board with attractive bits. My favorite thing was its "openness": so many options with none of them clearly better than others. That's a great feeling of exploration in a board game.

I got carried away with my Mergers powers and shouldn't have conceded the entire shipping world to Grace in that second-to-last turn. I don't know whether it would have been smarter to buy the shipping giant myself or to not have merged them at all. I was surprised that you managed to make a good amount with your oil companies on the last turn to tighten the game-end up, since you were lagging going into Era C.

I'd very much like to play with 4 or 5 players. (Can you imagine how different the game would be with as many as 15 cities on the board?!)

Thanks so much for hosting me. The chili, the company, and a big game made for a great end to my time in Michigan. Hope to see you and Grace again across a gaming table someday.
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Rob Mixemong
United States
Cedar Rapids
Iowa
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Nice session. This is by far one of my most favorite games. The options, the tension and the pure beauty of the game make it one of the greats. Thanks for sharing.
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Martins Livens
Latvia
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ACK ACK wrote:

I'd very much like to play with 4 or 5 players. (Can you imagine how different the game would be with as many as 15 cities on the board?!)


Having 15 cities would be very rare.
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Grace Daines
United States
Midland
Michigan
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Well, I was pretty nervous about playing this game, due to the length, but it was really pretty intuitive. I had to have the shipping in the last era if I wanted to stay in the game, and would have bid quite a bit more for shipping, but wasn't about to tell you that, Andy!

I was surprised how fun the game was, and it certainly was a great afternoon of entertainment!

Thanks for teaching us Power Grid, and the next time we pass through Oklahoma City on our way out to the fabulous National Parks in the west we will be sure to stop by for a game.

Safe traveling back to Oklahoma, Andy.

Grace
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