6 of us gathered to play the 100th game of Power Grid at the club. Gordon & I had played in the first one 10 years and 2 days before. This one was played on the Quebec board using the big deck so with 6 players the whole of the board was in play. I was musing in a previous post how using the big deck would involve a reevalauation of the definition of an end game plant, but with 6 players those thoughts are probably not as applicable as the game end trigger is 15 (compared with 18 for 5 players and 20 for 4 players), not much different to the 14 which applies with the standard deck.
The Quebec board seems to have a fair number of cheapish connections between (and including Quebec itself and Montreal) surrounded by much more expensive connections stretching out is 3 directions from there. After you get past the expensive connections there are then some relatively cheaper connections at the edge of the board. In this game we all seemed to concentrate in that Quebec to Montreal meaning that some of us got blocked in briefly before Jonathan headed north of Quebec and started step 2.
Once step 2 started we were essentially into the end game as everyone spread out, although I think that Bob, Gordon and Jaime were somewhat confined at this stage, while Jonathan, Isabel and I had better access to free sites. Jonathan ended the game when he had the capacity to power 14 cities to give him the game. Had the game gone on another turn, Bob would probably have been favourite as he had a lead in capacity (16 cities), but that would have depended on whether step 3 started before phase 4. There was one plant left to draw before the step 3 card, so if Jonathan had built only to 14 step 3 would have started as the lowest plant in the market was 14 and would have been discarded, likely meaning that at least one plant would have been bought in phase 2, triggering step 3. If he had only built to 13, plant 14 would not have been discarded and the state of the plant market would likely have meant no plant was bought so step 3 would not have started. This would have brought Bob and me into play and I think Bob would have won, but possibly he would have been stopped by not having the 20 cost city sites available. That last is all irrelevant of course because the game didn't go that far. It's unusual in our games not to get to step 3, but in this case the 6 extra plants in the deck made the difference.
After that Gordon departed and we played a quick game of ...Und Tschuss, then I got together with Mike and Mark for a couple of games of Guillotine.
Mike's main game of the evening was El Grande, which I seem to recall was played quite often many years ago, but this was only its fourth outing since I've been keeping records. It's a game that I would enjoy if not for one thing, that being the Castillio. That (or more precisely the redistribution of pieces after it has been scored) just kills it for me.
Making a reappearance after 3 months off the table was Nations which seems to be this year's new hotness at the club.
Full results for the week.
|Havana - 35 Mins.|
|Lost Legacy: The Starship - 45 Mins.|
|Power Grid - 110 Mins.|
|...und tschuss! - 20 Mins.|
|El Grande - 150 Mins.|
|Guillotine - 10 Mins.|
|Guillotine - 15 Mins.|
|Among the Stars - 75 Mins.|
|Nations - 180 Mins.|
Full details for July 2014
Monthly list at BGG for July 2014