The Games We Play

The Games We Play

A repository of reports on the Wednesday night sessions of the club and anything else related to the club or boardgaming in general, which may be of interest to anyone who may be passing by.

Wednesday 12 December 2007

Session Summary - 28 November 2007

4 people this week and as the buildup to the American presidential next year gathers pace the game was

Candidate 120 mins
Dave D2262
Steve H3

Going back a month or 2 when we played Condotierre, I was reminded of this, not that the game are really anything alike, but they do, in a sense, take the form of a series of battles. That's about where the similarities end.

I bought this game when it first appeared, back just before the 1992 American election and we had great fun with it for some time. The idea is that you play a candidate bidding for his parties nomination and the game is played as a series of primaries visiting all the states. In each state the players play cards representing money and other effects on themselves and each other and once all cards have been played they are revealed and whoever has committed the most money probably wins the state barring other problems, such as a scandal which causes a rerun or a deadlock which cancels the election entirely. A player may also play favourite son which will automatically win him one state, barring scandal or deadlock.

Each state won awards a number of electoral votes according to its size and to win you need to accumulate an outright majority (270 votes). If this does not happen before all states have been visited, you move on to the convention when first all the previously undecided states are awarded and then the last player drops out and his votes are reallocated until a winner is achieved. The rules for the convention follow the same rules as the primaries but deadlock and favourite son have no effect.
In this game I got off to a good start winning California, Texas and one of the other big states, while Steve settled into 2nd place with Mike and Matt squabbling for 3rd. Going into the convention Matt was last but won the 50 votes available for the undecided states to eliminate Mike, leaving Steve 3rd. I won the reallocation of Mike's votes leaving me on 262, agonisingly short of the finishing line with Steve eliminated. When Steve's votes were reallocated, Matt won, I having a hand solely filled with money cards of which I could only play one on my self, and no rumours or other things to play against Matt.

I had fun with this game, although it is not one to be played too often as it is definitely a case of having the right cards at the right time. That said there is some thinking to do in the manner of do I go all out to win the state right away or do I hold back expecting someone to play a scandal card causing a rerun in which case I will have wasted my cards.

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