Five of us on Wednesday, which proved an awkward number as we’d largely filled our games bags with 4 player games.
We started off with Vegas, a new game from Ravensburger. This is a fairly simple dice game. Roll a bunch of dice, choose one of the numbers rolled, and move all dice with that number onto a corresponding tile, then if you’ve got the most dice on it you’ll win the highest value money card, 2nd most, 2nd highest and so on. However draw with a player and you both win nothing. This isn’t a game in which you’d derive enjoyment from depth of play; however the draw and you win nothing mechanic provides the game with a fair amount of tension and drama, which proved very enjoyable given the play time. Dave D managed to win in the end after everyone had convinced themselves Dave F was going to win. Given the price point, and size of the box, this is definitely going on my maybe list.
Then as I’d forgotten to bring Dirge, Trite and Ball-ache (all from Thankless Task games), we played Klunker, which in breach of advertising standards was actually fairly decent. This is an old Uwe Rosenberg card game, and not too dissimilar mechanically to his many bean games. Dave F got a great first hand, and managed to keep the momentum going and win the game.
Then onto more Uwe Rosenberg with Space Beans. A card drafting variant of the bean series - place a card or cards in one of the two sets you’re building and pass all your cards to the right. One of the sets you’re collecting is open, the other secret – can’t add to either set, and you’ll have to ditch your open collection, which can be quite painful. Also quite painful is passing a load of cards to your right that you know they need. It therefore becomes a balancing act of trying to take the cards you need but not pass too many good cards to your right. Dave F won quite convincingly in the end.
Next was a Coloretto – and more set collection. However only 3 sets scores you positive points, the remainder score negative. Another quite simple game, either add a card to a row, or a take a row of cards. Do you push your luck and take another card or take some safe cards? Do you try and a set up a safe row of cards for yourself, or spoil them for other people. The rules to this game a super simple, yet the gameplay is relatively deep and offers some difficult choices, so I’m a big fan. Dave D and Donald had a bit of a shocker, collecting a bit of everything, and in the end I managed to pip Mike and Dave F for the win with a helpful joker card.
We finished with Pickomino / Heck Meck – a push your luck dice game I recently bought cheap on a trip to Berlin. This has a similar mechanic to Vegas above; you roll a bunch of dice and use all of one number. Then re-roll again, and pick a different number – if you can’t you’re bust. Again not a deep game, but the dice rolling and the ability to steal tiles from other players add a fair bit of tension, which is good fun. Another win for me – but with the amount of luck involved, I’m not exactly adding this achievement to my CV!
Overall some fun fillers, but I felt the evening sorely missed Bohnanza, so it’s going in my game bag for next time.