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.

Friday, 23 February 2007

Session Summary 21 February 2007

There were 8 of us this week and it was good to see Richard and Paul who we haven't seen for some time, so we split into 2 sets of 4 and played games.

Industrial Waste 120 mins
Dave D171
Richard C358

There was some discussion about what to play and we decided on this with the intention of playing something else afterwards, however I have never known any game of Industrial Waste like this. Early on I thought Richard was doing well being ahead on the innovation and growth tracks and while I was just behind on innovation I was behind on growth and thought everyone else was ahead on money, seemingly producing lots of orders, while I seemed to be making all mine by selling raw materials ( I think I only made 2 orders in the first half of the game). However there was a series of accidents affecting the other players and they all ended up taking loans. Then things seemed to turn when I paid for some raw materials, but was then unable to produce an order so ended up taking a loan, when everyone else was repaying theirs. Things turned back OK, the loan was soon repaid and as the game finished I maxed out the innovation and growth tracks, Jason got second place through good innovation score. Richard and particularly Paul, who ended up taking 2 loans right at the end were heavily hit by the end game accident.

After that mammoth session, there did not seem to be a suitable filler available (I must remember to get round to repairing my Guillotine box) and some discussion went on about different types of games and what people liked and disliked. There was notable disagreement as to which side was best in Fury of Dracula, with Paul suggesting that Dracula hadn't got a chance, while Matt, joining in from the other table, unsurprisingly held the exact opposite view. I would suggest that this indicates that both are wrong and the game is more balanced than either suggests.

On the other table, we had:

Amun-Re 70 mins
Richard B141
Steve H239

We usually want 5 players for this one, but this was was an exception and probably as a result, was a very quick game. It looked very close for the first 3 places.

On the Underground 70 mins
Richard B1=44
Steve H440

Isn't it just typical you wait weeks for a game and then one arrives when you're doing something else. Oh Well. Another very close game. Apparently Matt was involved in play testing this at an early stage in development.Dodgy picture below (no flash).

Until next week.

Monday, 19 February 2007

Session Summary 14 February 2007

14 February, Valentines Day and the attendance was down with just 4 adult members, although numbers were made up with some youngsters due to half term. In the absence of Dave C'snormal role playing session, Steve H took on the task of running the children's session and from the sound of it coming from the next door table they enjoyed themselves. That left Gordon, Steve P and I on the other table.

Games played as follows:

Tempus 90 mins
Player Posn. Points
Steve P 1 24
Dave D 2 23
Gordon 3 22

This one got a fair bit of play last year with Steve P behind it. As in most of the games played the result this time was close with the win going to Steve. For a long time during the game I thought Gordon was ahead, but he suffered as did I with a shortage of city sites and Steve was able to move ahead by building 2 late cities, while I got second place by virtue of the bonus points for developing flight at the end.

I see from the records that this is the third time I've played this and while I'm willing to play in the absence of anything I like better and I truly like the way a player can get a temporary advantage in technology , after which everyone catches up, I have to say I consider this rather ordinary.

Industrial Waste 60 mins
Player Posn. Points
Dave D 1 51
Gordon 2 33
Steve P 3 25

It's been a bit since this one had an outing although I was a bit surprised that Steve hadn't played before considering the amount of play the game has had. That and the fact that Gordon didn't seem toremember it that well gave me an advantage, but for a large part of the game I thought Steve was winning, but it became apparent at the end how cash strapped he was and the his lack of an order card forced him to take out 2 loans to cover his costs and the effects of the game end accident, so leaving me with a win that, from the scores, looks easier than it was.

On the other table Steve H ran Munchkin that looked like some type of card based role playing game, scores below

Munchkin 90 mins
Player Posn. Points
James 1 10
Daniel 2 4
Matthew 3= 3
Charlotte 3= 3
Steve H

Munchkin 50 mins
Player Posn. Points
James 1= 6
Daniel 1= 6
Matthew 1= 6
Charlotte 4 1
Steve H

Until Wednesday.

Friday, 9 February 2007

Session Summary 7 February 2007

The attendance this week was down to 7 people, I don't know whether this was due to the forecast snow fall or masochistic football fans staying in to see England play Spain. The early part of the session was spent dishing out the long delayed (due to my keeping forgetting to order) T-shirts, which were brought along by Mike. He will not be along next week, but I have the shirts for those who have ordered but not yet picked theirs up. The cost to members who have ordered is £2 per shirt. See below the wonderful design by Luke (this one's mine and is of course green).

On to the games

Hollywood Blockbuster 60 mins
Steve P197
Dave D277

A second outing for this one, which seems to be going down well with those who have tried it, so it's nice that we finally have an English release. Steve won by producing a lot of films, while I only produced 3 which were able to net me 3 of the 5 major awards at the end of the game. Kamil missed out by only having 3 films but missing out on the end of game awards.

Gheos 70 mins
Steve P272
Dave D368

This is an interesting tile laying game, pictured right. Basically you are a God creating and modifying a world by playing triangular tiles. There are potentially 6 tribes in different colours and on your turn you place a tile (either directly on the table or on top of an existing tile replacing it) and then if you have created a new continent or there is an existing vacant continent you may bring a new tribe (if available) on to the board, at the same taking follower cubes (of which there are 5 of each colour) equal to the number of corn symbols on the continent or alternatively taking a follower of any tribe already on the board. Following this you take a new tile to complete your turn by drawing a new tile to make your hand back up to 2.

You can trigger scoring for yourself on any turn by playing one of your 3 scoring discs at which time, for each follower you have you score 1 point for each cup symbol on the continent occupied by that colour, so in the picture (click for a larger view) Red followers score 5 points. In addition if an epoch tile is drawn each player scores 1 point for each follower for each pyramid that that tribe had on their continent, so in the picture each red scores 2 points. In addition points are scored by playing tiles with temples yielding points for the number of symbols corresponding to the temple on the continent that it appears on.

The interesting part of the game occurs when tiles are played causing continents to be split in which case any existing tribe migrates to the land having most corn symbols, or tiles are played combing continents in which case if there is more than 1 tribe on the new continent they come into conflict and the tribe with least weapons symbols on their side of the new continent is eliminated resulting in it being removed from the board with all followers being lost. It can be brought back later. To play a tile causing migration or conflict costs a follower of any colour but you can of course take it back as your action at the end of the turn.

The game ends when either the seventh epoch tile is played or all player scoring discs have been played. All in all an interesting game that I'd like to play again although I think we took far too long thinking about it resulting in a rather protracted game. This may also have something to do with the a marked delay in the appearance of epoch tiles and also because I was a bit distracted at one point trying to sort out the T-shirt money.

Taj Mahal 100 mins
Steve H344
Richard B432

A periodic outing for this one, looks like Mike had a good win.

San Juan 45 mins
Richard B226

A longer than average San Juan and a second win in a row for Gordon. Looks like a low scoring game, maybe a shortage of '6' buildings.

Until next Wednesday.

Sunday, 4 February 2007

Session Summary 31 January 2007

We gathered as usual on Wednesday with 10 in attendance making an average of 9.4 for the first month of the year. We split into 2 sets of 5 and the following games were played.

Power Grid 105 mins
Dave D38++

This has hit the table 4 out of 5 weeks this month, not that I mind, but maybe we should change the name to Halesowen Power Grid club. This was played on the Central European board and Kamil was able to advise on the correct pronunciations of the cities. The game came to a sudden end, when Gordon built to 15 cities, after all who went before him in the order had declined to build because of concern over the order in the following turn, which didn't come. This had the effect of leaving Simon, who had been very unfortunate with the power plants available and had the smallest total capacity in second place because he had more cities on the map. If we had known the game would end all 3 other players would have built and been able to power more cities, with Toby, I think taking 2nd or maybe the win.

I think Power Grid is a prime example of a game, where just because information, in this case player's money, is trackable, it does not mean that that information should be open. If that were the case, then this result could not have happened and in general the tension which is a large part of the game's appeal to me would be lost.

San Juan 35 mins
Dave D232

After Power Grid Kamil left and Simon and Toby went down to the bar. Gordon and I played a rare 2 player San Juan. It was very close and Gordon finished with a City Hall to add to his Guild Hall, leaving me a card short of building the palace to go with my Triumphal Arch and set of monuments. Oh well.

Wildlife 120 mins
Richard B182
Steve H279
Steve P3=69

On the other table this got an outing for a second week and seemed to go down well with all concerned. This was sufficient to leave it as the second most played game of the month.

I have updated the stats pages and a summary for January 2007 is here.

See you next week.