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Subject: Happy Holiday Gaming Tales rss

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Michael Pennisi
United States
Carpentersville
Illinois
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In the past few days my students & friends have shared many holiday gaming stories with me that I feel I can take some credit for. Allow me to share these with all you:

1. A student wanted to buy a board game as a Christmas gift for her brother, I suggested Ticket To Ride from Toys R’ Us. She bought it and the family loves it! They played twice on Christmas day alone.

2. A student in my strategy game club told me of his Christmas gift haul: Railroad Tycoon, Puerto Rico, Loot, Attacktix, and DaVinci’s Challenge. At this week's club meeting he brought two friends who had also purchased their own Attacktix figures. I think I have a convert.

3. One of my colleagues came to my house last spring and really enjoyed TransAmerica but never got around to ordering it online. I gave it to him for Christmas and he said he and his family played it all day and again on New Year’s.

4. Some friends of my wife (two college-age girls and a guy in his 20’s) came over to play games. These people are casual, party game players and the most difficult game I have played with them in the past is Ticket to Ride. Feeling ambitious, I pulled out Railroad Tycoon and taught it to them, sans Tycoon cards. They loved it & told my wife the next day they want to come back and play it again.
 
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T. Rosen
United States
Arlington
Virginia
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Wow, impressive. And I thought I was good at converting people to the eurogaming hobby. You should get some sort of BGG prosleytizer award for the month of December. Well, maybe you and Scott Nicholson together laugh
 
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Sue Hemberger

Washington
Dist of Columbia
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Highlights of my holiday season:

1. One brother-in-law delightedly proclaiming "We're all gamers now! We know and like so many games!" after various family members and assorted boyfriends played Blokus (old fave), Guillotine (Thanksgiving discovery), Poison, Phoenix, Diamant, and Boomtown virtually non-stop for 3 days.

2. Mom asking me to teach her Puerto Rico, but agreeing to settle for San Juan. Then eager to play again.

3. Learning San Juan, Gemblo, Untergang von Pompeji, Hamsterrolle, In Teufel's Kuche, and Fairy Tale for the first time myself.

4. An email from a friend claiming that her family must have played Break the Safe (one of our Xmas gifts to them) 50 times in the past week. And another friend who wouldn't let us leave after a long day of Xmas cookie baking until we taught 'em Guillotine because she wanted to take it over the holidays to her in-laws who had just turned her on to Blokus.

5. Excited phone message from a friend visiting from out of state who took the 4 games we'd given her kids on the road as she made the rounds and now needed sources to buy more. Her kids (5 y.o. triplets and a 10 year old) had never played games before and, in the course of a week, they're hooked -- and they're already working on their friends. [Potential long-term payoff here -- this friend speaks/reads German fluently, will probably visit Germany in the near future (she's representing her University as it tries to establish a relationship with Jena), and will spend a sabbatical year there a couple years from now. Visions of currently inaccessible German e-bay delights are dancing in my head...]

We (husband, daughter and I) also taught Fettnapf in Sicht, Ingenious, Schildkroetenrennen, Kleine Fische, Kupferkessel, Loco, Geister Treppe, Nobody But Us Chickens, Laura's Sternenspiel, and Mago Magino to various friends and/or family members to whom we'd given copies as gifts -- or who, having been delighted by the game(s) they received from us for Xmas, were asking for more recommendations.

I'm kinda surprised at how people here sometimes talk as if it's difficult to turn newbies onto games. Piece of cake, IME. But maybe I just know/hang out with especially playful people!
 
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Michael Pennisi
United States
Carpentersville
Illinois
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Sounds like you also has a great gaming holiday as well Sue. Getting a non-gamer to play San Juan is pretty impressive. Reading your post reminded me that I also gave (and taught) Chicken Cha Cha Cha to my 5 year old niece who demanded to play it as soon as she drove home.

I agree with you about converting people, it's not hard if you just consider your audience and keep things fun.
 
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Sue Hemberger

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I'm guessing that my Mom's not a non-gamer for long. She started by learning stuff to play with/buy for the grandkids, but increasingly she's asking me to teach her more grown-up games -- usually two-person games when my daughter's in school and Mom & I are home alone during one of her visits. (Although this visit, we got in some 3 person all adult games.) But I live in DC and she lives in CA. So I put her on the Orange County Boardgamers mailing list in hopes of finding her some adults to play games with (her oldest grandkid in CA is 7 and doesn't like games over 20 minutes or games he loses) and I think that one of their emails mentioning PR prompted her to ask me about it when she noticed it in the window of our local toystore. (Yes, in the window of our local toy store -- it and Settlers 3-D were focal points in their holiday display).

Should add that my Dad won't play games at all (except maybe tiddlywinks and pickup sticks), so if there's a gamer gene and I got it, Mom's gotta be the carrier.


 
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Sue Hemberger

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Duh -- just realized that Michael and I (as well as Scott) are all teachers. Which, for a variety of reasons, might explain why we find games an easy sell. Lots of access to people who think for fun and plenty of experience trying to engage peoples' interest in things that are much less fun than games!
 
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