Since picking up Citadels a couple of weeks ago, it has become the most played game in the house by far. We manage to play a game of it most days, usually 2 players, sometimes 3. My son (age 7, almost 8) and I have a great time playing each other second guessing each other, and hoping to build a city that we can truly call our own.
At least that's how it went before my daughter joined in.
On this fateful day, my son convinced his sister that she should join us. She's almost 6 and just starting to read, so I figured she would have a hard time with it and never encouraged her to even try. She's good at games, so I thought she would eventually pick it up just fine, but not in the first game. Not without some experience.
I underestimated her luck.
We played with the standard set of 8 characters. In the second round I had a bit of gold on hand I had picked up from the first round. I felt safe. I figured my son would concentrate on other things that turn and leave the thief alone.
Unfortunately my daughter was not so kind.
She played the thief. Not knowing the names of the characters yet, she just picked numbers at random. "Number 6," she said. "Curses," I thought. When my turn came, I lost 5 gold. I had only ever lost 1 or 2 gold to the thief previously in other games. Beginner's luck.
She decided she liked the thief.
Next turn, my daughter incarnated as an evil thief picked another number. It happened to be my son. He lost 4 gold, his worst loss ever to the thief.
Then she tried the assassin.
"Number, um, 7."
"Dang," I thought as one of my character's turns passed right on by.
I never recovered from those early hits. It all seems a blur now. The hopelessness. The fruitless efforts to do anything. The constant attacks from across the table.
"You mean I can wreck that building?" she asked when she first tried the warlord.
It was the most difficult Citadels game ever. It's hard to read a person who can't read her own moves. I eventually started to pick my own characters at random without even looking at the cards. It was just as hopeless.
In the end, she wasted us both. We were gracious in defeat but awaited the next time. We would be avenged.
Me, the poor dad: 12