Wednesday, 27 July 2011

The one where Jon left them for one night and they turned into a bunch of Trekkies.........

Players: James, Paul D, Philip, Maynard, Andy, Keith, Dan, John, Emma, Gareth, Scott, Vicky, Amanda, Shirief

Well, I was on holiday this week, basking on the beaches of Norfolk, enjoying the peaceful atmosphere and the complete lack of mobile signal or broadband connection (just like the good ol' days....)

However, the rest of the faithful IBG'ers congregated for the usual Wednesday night session, and here are a collection of the reports of what went on (many thanks to James for collecting them)......

Memoir '44 (thanks James)
So Paul and me continued our aim to try out some 2 player games before anyone else arrived. Emma magnanimously allowed us to give this a whirl while she was munching her dinner so we quickly set up in expectation we’d take about 45 mins to get through the first scenario. I’ve played a couple of times before, but always Allies, so taking the Germans this time (it never feels right to be playing the Germans in a WW2 game, too many memories of school-ground games and a guarantee that you’re gonna end up losing) and letting Paul be the Allies I hoped it would even things up. The rules are pretty simple, especially as the game eases you into the complexity as you work through the various scenarios.
The early battles were over by the right-hand bridge, the Germans only have a small force to protect this so it’s an easy win for the Allies. Paul seemed to find this a tad harder than hoped and lost a battalion but still managed to wipe out both German defences and take the early lead. In the meantime I was taking potshots at his forces from the other side of the river and sandbag defences to try and whittle down a few troops. Nothing serious but it forced a few retreats from Paul’s beleaguered forces. Paul realised there was no gain in fighting on 2 fronts so pulled back a little from the main German defences while polishing off the remains on the RHS and then moved over for the final battle.
Things looked good for the Allies towards the end of the game with the Germans abandoning their sandbags and hiding in the trees. But then, a sudden desperate counterattack, and everything turned around. I had one chance, needing to take out 2 allies with 2 dice… otherwise Paul would win next turn… and… and… the gods smiled on the Nazis!
We both enjoyed this! Lots of tiny miniatures, lots of dice, lots of cards. It feels like the game was invented to allow non-war gamers a chance to play war games :) I have a feeling that we’ll try to get this out in future weeks when we’re both early to check out the further scenarios… but don’t expect us to be painting any figures just yet. That way madness lies......

Star Trek: Expeditions (thanks John for this one)
Three members of the IBG'ers temporarily joined the Federation on Wednesday night. Their mission was not exactly to go boldly but actually to go to Nibia. A planet that seemed to have got itself into a right mess. Captain James T Kirk (John), Mr Spock (Daniel) and Uhura (Emma) boarded the USS London Apprentice (The Enterprise was getting a refit) and blasted off for Nibia.
When they got there they found the situation was much worse than they had been led to believe. The Klingons had managed to get there first and were doing a good job trying to convince the government to join the Klingon Empire and they had almost decided to join. Of course that might mean nothing if the large rebel forces that were threatening to overthrow the government won the day. And if that was not bad enough, Mr Spock's initial scan of the planet revealed the ecosystem was on the verge of collapse. Our heroes obviously had a lot to do.
Kirk immediately took charge and tried with limited success to get some of the crew to join him on the planet. (Maybe they had seen to many episodes of the old TV show). As is typical with Kirk he beamed down to where the Alien Priestess was and managed to take her within seconds of landing. Then it was Mr Spock's turn and he shunned the scanners at his disposal (Did not use his ability to look at a location without going there all game) and decided to be in on the action here as he beamed down also.
Although Kirk and Spock both found some local trouble it was left to Uhuru to find the real trouble. After recruiting a member of the crew she beamed down and visited the Presidential Palace, to try some diplomacy. She did not have quite the right skills that were needed. So Kirk decided to head over to use his great diplomatic skills at the place (He also heard there were some hot Alien Senators there). After finding out just how alien, alien could be, he used his diplomatic skills to make the Nibian Government tell him about the overtures the Klingons had made. Trouble was not over but progress was being made.
As the missions progressed Mr Spock revealed himself to be more charismatic than had ever been thought before as more and more crew members flocked to him. Him and his team were soon able to avert a disaster at the Nibian Power Generator by installing some new dilithium crystals.
Now Uhuru really started to use her communication abilities making sure crewmen were reporting to the most suitable location. A Klingon bird of prey was in orbit around the planet. There had been a few minor skirmishes between it and the USS London Apprentice so Kirk himself beamed up and took charge of the counter attack. It was a long battle but he eventually (with a little help from Mr Spock) destroyed it. This allowed the London Apprentice to move into a better position to defend the planet (more points at the end.)
Meanwhile Mr Spock and Uhuru were busy down on the planet. While trying to find out what was the matter with Nibia's dilithium reserves Uhuru got caught up in some local trouble. Luckily Kirk was able to break off from his combat with the Klingons long enough to beam down and help her out. This allowed her to continue her investigation and discover that a rare type of decalithium was causing a degradation to the dilithium.
While that was going on Mr Spock was giving a presentation at the Nibian Senate of all the advantages of aligning with the Federation rather than the Klingons. He did such a good job that the Nibian government presented him with the Amulet of friendship.
So great progress was being made with the diplomatic side and the ecosystem rescue. However very little progress had been made with the rebels thoughand time was ticking. Then a government motorcade was ambushed by the rebels. There were many casualties and it took a long time for Starfleet medical to deal with the aftermath. Kirk thought, what a terrible time for Bones to go on vacation.
Mr Spock now seemed to move so fast that time almost seemed to stand still. (He played lots of extra action cards.) With his now huge crew following, he first went to the Temple of the Soul where he managed to uncover the secret of the ancient Nibain artifacts and was rewarded by the Nibian Government who signed the agreement of federation and awarded him the Soul's blessing. Not yet done, Mr Spock then raced over to the Dilithium Processing Centre and helped them upgrade it so they could sell the decalithium to the Federation and use the now purified dilithium to solve their own energy production problems.
Finally with time ticking away it down to Uhuru to deal with the rebels. Kirk assigned her the crew members most suited for the mission and even Mr Spock allowed a couple of his flock of followers to go with her. With great daring she led an attack that took out the Rebel headquarters, where she found details of the Klingons plans. Returning to Nibian Military Headquarters she worked with the Nibians to set a deadly trap for the Klingons.
That was all missions successfully accomplished with quite a few days to spare. For their efforts John, Daniel and Emma were awarded the Starfleet Silver Palm.
The game was played on the easy difficulty level and to be honest once you know how the game works, it's not a very hard challenge. I think next time it needs to be at least medium.
Kirk out.......

Thanks to Gareth for the next 3 reports...

Notre Dame
A game about juggling seven different areas within your region of Paris, trying to obtain the most victory points. The main mechanic of the game is a card draft every round proceeded with worker placement.
Vicky became overrun by rats in the second phase which depleted her points. Scott ran out of gold in the third phase restricting his options. Amanda went for early victory points but then had to quickly avert a rat invasion. Gareth amassed lots of gold to spend in Notre Dame and grabbed a narrow victory.
Gareth 61; Scott 57; Amanda 49; Vicky 35

Scott and Vicky went on too many disastrous hunts. Emma was too trusting but did get the +2 victory points for the most polar bears. Amanda and John had a lot of success and confusion reigned between Gareth and Dan and a lot of Fish! 
Emma 13; Amanda 11; John 10; Dan 7; Gareth 6; Scott 5; Vicky 4

The Resistance
10 players incl 4 spies.
James was picked up as a spy from the start by an action card he gave to Scott. First mission failed by Maynard. Gareth survived the first mission and was sent on the second along with Amanda two more fails for the spies. Gareth and James now ousted and John suspected of being a spy. Third mission successful, John continued to protest his innocence but this fell on deaf ears. Fourth mission included Maynard and the spies won.
Spies -  James, Gareth, Maynard and Amanda.
Resistance – Scott, Vicky, John, Paul, Emma and Philip.

Parade (thanks Maynard for this one)
This is an abstract game featuring six groups of coloured cards, each with numbers from 0-10. Initially each player has a hand of five cards, there is a parade of six cards dealt face up and the remaining cards form a draw pile. Each player takes it in turn to add a card to the far end of the parade, collect any eligible cards from the rest of the parade for scoring, and replenish their hand with a card from the draw pile. When the draw pile is emptied each player gets one more go, they discard two of the cards in their hand and use the other two for scoring, and then final scoring takes place.
Determining which cards you pick up works like this. Firstly, look at the number on your card, and count back from the old end of the parade that number of cards. Then pick up any cards that remain that are the same colour, or have a value of less or equal to your card.
For example, here’s a sample parade:
Draw pile : Blue 7 : Blue 4 : Green 6 : Red 2 : Green 5 : Purple 2 : Purple 5 : Red 10 : Blue 6
If we add a Green 4 to the end of this pile, we count back four cards from the end (to the Purple 2) and the remaining cards are unprotected. We then pick up any cards that are the same colour (Green 5 and Green 6) and the same or lower value (Red 2 and Blue 4).
To get the score, check if you have the largest collection of a particular colour(s). If so, turn those cards face down. Then add the numbers on each card remaining, and add 1 for every face down card. The winner is the person with the lowest score.
This game was initially dominated by rule and scoring confusion, but things were cleared up and we got going. After a few initial quick rounds frowns started to emerge as the choices started to become “least-worst” rather than actually good. Some analysis and card-counting was required, and Maynard quickly lost track of any sort of strategy. He ended up picking up plenty of white and yellow cards but was gazumped by other players also collecting yellows. Emma was doing well at avoiding picking up too many high-value cards, and Philip had a monopoly on blue cards.
The game ended with Emma coming a creditable second, Philip third and Maynard a distant fourth, in a state of despair giving up counting his cards. John explained that there was a reasonable element of strategy as he tends to win about half of his games, even if that strategy was yet to be figured out by the some players!
John 13; Emma 16; Philip 20; Maynard - lots... 

Le Havre (thanks to Keith for this session report)
As I'm sure everyone is aware Le Havre is variation on the worker placement theme. This week's hard working dockers (yes, it's a fictional setting) were placed by Andy, Keith and Shirief.
This time work shy dockers were particularly slow to construct any buildings because Andy monopolised the wood and Keith took all the clay. Eventually Shirief's fine and efficient dockers managed to source the relevant raw materials and developments started to spring up along his side of the harbour including a Joinery and a Hardware Store.
Andy raced to catch up, with his dockers building a Smokery, a Marketplace and a Charcoal Kiln while Keith hoarded his resources, only building a Bakery. So by half way through the game it looked like the results would be Shirief ahead of Andy with Keith dragging up the rear atop his massive bread mountain.
The second half of the game was something of a reversal with Keith's bread mountain keeping his workers fed while the dockers on Shirief's building sites refused to work without pay, forcing him to take loans to stay in business. With their basic needs met Keith's workers rallied, building the Wharf, and turning out the first wooden ship, then a Grocery Market and the Shipping Line in short order.
Meanwhile, Andy's workers had moved into heavy industry with the Cokery and Steelworks towering over his mostly unused Marketplace. Keith was stymied by a shortage of cash, so Andy was able to get the first steel ship while Keith shipped some some hides. Keith then built his first steel ship while Andy built the first luxury liner.
As the game drew to a close Shirief finally managed to bake a massive consignment of bread, get his striking dockers back to work, and build a couple more buildings. But Keith and Andy had leapfrogged him and spent the last few turns milking points from the Shipping Line.
Andy 165; Shirief 125; Keith 180

The only other game played tonight was Egizia, and James may or may not reveal what happened in the fullness of time....

That was it - more of the same next week!

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Why oh Wai oh Wii oh Wi................

Players: Jon, Barry, Scott II, Wai, Ian, Daniel, Vicky, Maynard, Gareth, Noel, James, Tonio, Andy, Woody, Philip, Calum

This week we were relocated in the Conservatory at the London Apprentice, but the bar staff were good enough to reserve at least 4 large tables for us, and this time supplied the portable lamps, so our gaming could continue in style. It was just as well, as 16 IBG'ers turned up, including Calum, a mate of Jon's, who turned out to be no slouch at boardgames (except for Nanuk, that is...)

It was Wai and Scott II's final week with us, as they have been visiting the UK from Canada, and in honour of this momentous occasion, I have decided to finally spell Wai's name right on the blog! It was great having you guys along for a few weeks - safe journey home....

Now, there were a lot of games played this week, and I'm compiling this following a week's holiday, so there'll be a few more 'scores only' reports than usual, and thery are probably completely out of order. Nevertheless, hopefully it gives some indication of the good times that we get up to at IBG...

Dominion Intrigue (thanks James)
So Paul and myself, again taking advantage of an early start and this time fortunately not interrupted by either Tonio’s or Gareth’s latest game de jour decided to revisit a modern classic. I was keen to try this having spent my lunch break sorting out all the decks from the mass of cards I discovered when I’d opened the box earlier in the day… Interestingly neither of us had played that much, although experience on the android ‘androminion’ app probably gave me an advantage.
I think the sets we used were as follows Pawn, Minion, Scout, Secret Chamber, Shanty Town, Ironworks, Trading Post, Tribute, Upgrade, Wishing Well... but I could be wrong. Pawn is a good cheap card and Tribute became a better and better option as the game progressed. Some big money rounds could be gathered for cheap one of these cards turning up.
I didn’t take long to start tucking into the Provence cards and I think Paul realised mid game it was a lost cause. He’d gone for a varied selection of cards which is a fun way to play the game but rarely is a winning strategy. I’d sooner pay like this that just go down the money only route which although it does win a lot of the time doing this… is just plain dull…
Still a fun way to start the evening, it’s strange after playing a game on a touch screen for a while to then play with physical objects. The dealing’s a pain though!
James 60 odd; Paul 30 odd

Havana (thanks again James)
Having lost the night before to Liz (my long suffering partner) I was keen to get this to the table again. Managing to persuade Paul and Maynard with a promise it wouldn’t be more than 30 mins (well in theory…) we set up and started.
Very easy to explain this one, everyone has a set of 15 action card from which 2 are secretly selected each turn. These cards basically earn resources (workers, money, bricks or rubble) and the resources build things for VP. The main twist is that the turn order is based on the lower cards selected and the higher value cards can perform stronger actions. Turn order is vital as some resources are only available to the first to select a specific action. First to 20 VP wins (for the 3p game)
So I managed to buy a 7 point building early on and was feeling confident with my over in 30 mins claim at this stage… Paul was gathering cash and Maynard seemed to be taking delight in stealing things from both of us. Lots of interaction in this game, you need to be always looking to get one over on the other players if you want to do well. (I like to think this is why Liz beat me the night before, I’m basically just too nice !).
By midgame Paul and Maynard were both picking up 3/4/5 point buildings and soon I realised I was doomed to failure once again. It was just a case of who out of P&M could hit the magic 20 total first. Maynard had first dibs in what would transpire to be the last round, but Paul just had enough to afford the last building to get him to the 20 total. He might claim this was superior planning, I prefer to think he lucked out...
I like this game. It’s a big box for not many actual pieces, but a lot of game in what is there. Will be interesting to see how it works with 4 and given my failure rate so far I need to keep getting this to the table until I can finally win one!
Paul 20; Maynard 18; James 12

For Sale
Early doors filler, with a full contingent of 6 players. As always, it’s all about relative values. Scott II found himself picking up some good deals in the auction largely due to sitting to the left of Barry, but the ending was very close, with only 5 points separating the first 3 players. Our Canadian friends turned out to be both the best and worst at buying and selling properties...
Scott II 52; Barry 50; Jon 47; Calum 42; Ian 36; Wai 28

Ticket to Ride Europe
Calum was a complete newcomer to this game, whilst Scott had only played the original version. Jon made the mistake of throwing away his long-route at the beginning, even though he would have been able to complete it, and then got blocked out in the middle of the board, necessitating the formation of an expensive circuitous route.
Scott and Calum were both making a good fist of West-East track-building, but it was Dan who had the best plan, and despite nearly being derailed in Scandinavia, he strolled to victory with ease, including a bonus for the longest route.
Dan 130; Calum 110; Jon 106; Scott II 55

Troyes (thanks to Philip for this report)
Another meeting of Isleworth Boardgamers, another game of Troyes with Ian, me and Tonio. Well, Woody was the 4th player and new to Troyes, so some things changed.
Not the cards though. Theoretically, the odds of getting the same 3 initial cards in the deal are 1/27. But there they were staring back at me, Priest, Archer and Miller,once again.
I wasn't complaining mind. Since I had set up for a "cubes in the cathedral" strategy (which happened to be my objective card), I had 3 citizens in the white building, meaning Miller was a strong revenue source for me.
Meanwhile Woody had the Event cards objective and he proceeded to shoot his way through the event cards while putting just enough cubes in the Cathedral to escape any penalty. The Templar (swap 1 white die for 2 red dice) he also used effectively.
Ian was equally single-minded in his pursuit of the meeples in buildings objective, and he and Tonio mercilessly hounded my meeples from the white building, forcing me to spend at least one die each turn putting a meeple back in the white building- running to stand still as it were. Tonio's strategy was unclear. He used the "swap money for influence" activity, only to find he had too much influence and not enough money...
Meanwhile the Sculptor had appeared (as it had done in the previous match, odds against now rising to 1/81). Me and Ian were able to take the lucrative Sculptor VP spots, and I bought into Priest for the combo, but I didn't actually manage to use the Priest cubes on Sculptor as I was running low on Money and spent them on Miller instead.
Woody 49; Philip 42; Ian 36; Tonio 27

San Marco (thanks to Noel for this one)
Noel and Gareth convinced Vicky to join them in their 3rd game of San Marco in as many weeks. This was new to Vicky but she quickly realised the value of the scoring cards and managed to co-ordinate card selection and meeple placement to ensure an early double scoring of one district with no one else picking up points. She shot into an early lead and Noel and Gareth stopped looking suspiciously at each other and targeting Vicky with more focus.
Shortly afterwards Noel was able to repeat Vicky's feat of scoring unilaterally as Gareth was unable to manipulate the cards to avoid leaving Noel in the majority in the central district with Gareth and Vicky tied for second place (and hence no points!) Noel then took the lead and was able to build on that with some thoughtful (too much thought for some...) card dividing and selection. Conscious of his mistake at the final hurdle last week he was particularly careful to ensure Gareth didn't have a final surge from last place.
And finally a game of San Marco completed with no rule errors!
Noel 76; Vicky 49; Gareth 42

No Thanks
New to Scott II and Calum, but one of the simplest games to teach. Calum was the first to crack and picked up some high cards, but was soon followed by Dan. A lack of chips saw Scott pick up cards that he obviously would rather not have done, whilst Calum's strategy of picking up higher cards started to pay off, as he was making a nice run of numbers. However, Jon had managed to get a nice single complete run, along with a nice pile of chips, to leave him with a nice small score.
Jon 13; Calum 29; Scott II 50; Dan 66

Ticket to Ride Europe (II) (thanks to James again for this one)
So, after Havana we realised that all the other games were in full flight and that we 3 were on our own… After a brief look around we settled on an old classic. It’s always a fun game to play but seems to often get lost under the weight of all the new stuff. Was a good move to make this game of the month and to play several times in the last month.
My long route was the Spain-Sweden stretch, and having seen Scott win the previous week by claiming the 8 train stretch I was aiming to try and take a route going that way. As usually though the real scrap in Europe is around the Germany/Switzerland axis with all the small 1/2/3 steps. And with a 3 player game meaning each route can only be taken once things got cramped quite quickly. I think at one stage I had to mentally reroute about 4 times over the course of 3 rounds as my options got snaffled by other players. I collected 2 sets of extra routes towards the end, Paul stuck with his original routes and I think Maynard took 1 set.
Despite expecting not to finish them all I was hoping this and the 21 points from the 8 route would be the winning strategy. Things got tight at the end, and luckily for me as Maynard started the last round I only had one more route to claim to finish my long route.
Paul ended up with a dozen trains left which is never a good thing. And so to the scoring… I was ahead on the track so went last. Paul hit 107 Maynard 112 and myself 122… so if Maynard had the longest route it would be a tie… 
Eventually after several recounts, Paul’s route won this by 1 train (!) meaning he jumped Maynard into 2nd place but left me in front. Thanks Paul!
James 122; Paul 117; Maynard 112

Castle Panic
It's been a long time since we've had the opportunity to rummage inside Tonio's pants (!), so a game of Castle Panic was well overdue. As Calum and Scott II were both new to the game, it was decided to play without the Evil Overlord variant.
It was a close-run thing, with several boulders doing damage to the masonry at inopportune moments. However, the Defenders won with one tower left and Dan (of course!) was Master Slayer...
Dan 15; Scott 12; Calum 12; Jon 7

This had not been played for a long time, and was characterised by Tonio complaining (as always) that everyone was picking on him. (Actually, his language was a little less blog-friendly than that….) The Canadians amongst us threw some interesting seal-clubbing comments into the mix, but all in all, a fun time was had by all.
The general groupthink developed that people rarely went on the hunt, and it therefore rarely succeeded, up until the end when Jon and 2 others bucked the trend for a successful hunt and a large payday. Definitely a game to pull out occasionally when there are a large number of willing players!
Jon 15; Noel 12; Dan 9; James 7; Gareth 6; Scott II 6; Calum 1; Tonio 1

And here are the scores of the other games played:

James 26; Gareth 21; Vicky ?; Maynard ?; Paul ?; Noel - 0!

No Thanks
Noel 91; James 55; Tonio 47; Gareth 471 (the writing was smudged here... I'm pretty sure there are 3 digits though...) (a steward's enquiry revealed that it was actually "47!" - so a tie for the win.....)

Family Business
(order of survival) James; Noel; Vicky; Maynard; Gareth; Paul

Gareth 32; Woody 21; Philip 14

There was also a looong game of Le Havre, but I'm afraid that there are no details. I think that Andy liked it though, so I'm sure that it will feature again soon....

Back in the Riverview Room next week, but as I'm absent, expect a little wait for the next blog. Cheerio!

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Mammoth amounts of dice.......

Players: Scott, Tonio, Paul, Sharief, Alex, James II, Jon, Maynard, Vicky, Soren, Paul A, Barry, Wii, Scott II, Emma, Woody, Philip, Andy, James

19 IBG’ers rocked up tonight (well, 18, until James graced us with his presence late on…), including a return visit from some of our latest recruits, and a welcome back after a few weeks away to Alex and James II.

What is it with dice and IBG'ers? A year ago, even the mention of one of those 6-sided random little cubes would have been met with distrust and disdain. Now it seems that just about every game that we play has at least one die in it somewhere - and some of them seem to have hundreds! Anyway, the rolling of the dice tonight gave us an insight into the reason for the credit crunch (Maynard's fault) as well as an opportunity for James to play one dice game with completely different dice stolen from 2 other games. That's just greedy (that's just James......)

Looking for a quick opening filler, Maynard chose –

Pick Picknic
This game was characterised by Sharief’s uncanny ability to always roll favourable dice, whilst everyone else failed miserably in this endeavour. Especially Maynard, who rolled against the odds several times, and lost out spectacularly each time (this perhaps explains why a former employer of Maynard’s is now a rather infamous “ex” bank…..)
Anyway, Maynard’s foxes snaffled a few chickens along the way, but this was not enough to catch Sharief, who proved to be king of the farmyard.
Sharief 41; Maynard 35; Paul 29; Jon 27

With a group of 7 looking for games, they were split 4 & 3, with the 4 choosing –

Ticket to Ride: Europe
The Europe version was new to Alex and James II, but the changes aren’t huge, so the game was soon underway. As usual, the game started with lots of card-collecting, until James decided to lay the first set of trains.
Jon had been hoarding pink cards, and used them to complete the long 8-train section at the top of the board, for a healthy 21 points. There then followed a battle through central Europe between Paul, James and Alex, whilst Jon kept himself to himself in Russia. Paul did his best to block Jon out towards the end, but the availability of stations helped Jon to just avoid this problem.
With Jon laying his final trains, the game was over. Jon’s station had enabled him to finish his 3rd route, and he had also picked up the longest route bonus, by a couple of trains from James. This was enough to give him a convincing win, with the other 3 fighting it out for second place.
Jon 130; Alex 94; James II 93; Paul 86

And the 3 chose -

Agricola (thanks to Andy for this report)
With Andy having acquired his own copy of Agricola, fellow IBGers could have trouble persuading the addict to have a go at anything else. And this proved to be the case as it got its first outing this week with Sharief and Maynard.
Sharief had played the family game once before but that was several weeks ago so a quick refresher on the rules and an introduction to the occupations and minor improvements was needed. Once play began he was quick to understand that snapping up wood was a good thing and he was also able to swiftly purchase an oven in order to get a baking strategy going. This does however require a good understanding of when to take certain actions and he did end up getting caught out once or twice by harvests, when those hungry workers need feeding, and ended up going begging on one occasion.
Maynard employed an aggressive mid-game expansion policy and made good use of a couple of cards to get discount rooms and jump ahead in the family growth stakes. But the metaphorical chickens came home to roost when the expansion led to feeding problems that subsequently restricted him to a family of four by the end of the game.
Andy benefited from two cards that gave him food for keeping at least three sheep and that, combined with a mountain of vegetables gained through a couple of occupations, solved any food issues. This advantage came to tell in the last couple of rounds and meant he could spend the final stages filling up the gaps in his farm while the others had to deal with the rumbling tums of their growing families.
Andy 44; Maynard 24; Sharief 18

And now - 2 for the price of 1. So keen were they to write something, that both Philip and Soren have given us mammoth reports on this game new to IBG -

Valley of the Mammoths (thanks firstly to Philip)
Five us arrived early last Wednesday evening, so we happily started up Soren's Valley of the Mammoths. Soren explained the rules. I seem to have been half-asleep at this point, but perhaps I should encourage future rules explainers to emphasise one vital point: You can't have a camp or a cave without a woman!
Anyway, by the time the rules had been finished and the game was actually beginning several more club members had drifted in. We all placed our camps in a kind of star arrangement centred on the first player to pick. I had a partiuclarly foolhardy site right next to the volcano. All of us went on plains and planted crops.
The first event occurred, a flood, destroying Tonio's village and crops and paralysing his tribespeople. Tonio then quit the game. Score one for the environment!
Animals appeared and we spread out cautiously. I sent both my women and one warrior to trap an animal on the volcano, not realising a) that my women weren't worth anything in combat, even against animals (I'd understood that women could fight animals and assumed that meant they'd be good at it) and b) that my camp would be destroyed because there were no women left in it. Fortunately for me everyone else failed to notice b) and my camp survived. Unfortunately, one of my women was killed in the fight with the animal.
Wildfire broke out, providing most players with fire (I picked fire up from the volcano). Emma, cut off by fire and the river, played a river crossing event to allow her to enter the mountains on the other side, moving almost all her tribe there. The first player (whose name I have unaccountably forgotten- Paul, Tonio reminds me) left his camp with just one warrior and one woman, and I raced three warriors into it sensing an easy capture (but playing "Sharpened Stones" just to make sure). However, he was able to kill the woman before the man, so the camp was destroyed for lack of women.
Harvest time, and I played an event to increase crop yields by 4 food. A second event gave me an extra birth, which compensated for having only one women, especially when one of the births was twins (taking notes, Gareth?) Emma played an event allowing her to give birth outside of the camp.
Winter began with bitter cold, eating into our food supplies. Foolishly I pushed on, sacking Emma's original camp while she established a Cave on the other side of the river (with a second Cave to follow soon). Meanwhile the first player had built himself a cave, Soren had established a Cave next to his original camp but his food stores were running low...
A pack of wolves appeared at the place I was about to build a Cave, Soren sacked my camp using a card which gave one of his men extra movement, and I captured the first player's cave and woman (left there alone) with a card which gave a group of warriors extra movement (the same group that had sacked Emma's camp). I killed all the wolves with a traps event card. Soren began to lose people to hunger.
A Cave-Bear awoke in Soren's cave, killing the warrior and woman he had left there. The first player used up the rest of his warriors in attacking his old cave, but I foolishly sacrificed my only woman in its defence, meaning that it disappeared! (No camp or cave without a woman!) I established a new cave where the pack of wolves had been and prepared for another one on the slopes of the volcano.
Soren was the only one with a Camp left in the plains so he planted crops. Emma played a card allowing her to plant crops on mountains and antother to choose the sex of a birth- she chose female. The Summer began with Earthquakes killing Emma's people. The first player reappeared as a smaller tribe far away from everyone. I established my cave on a Volcano and Soren's scouts entered the Volcano to pick up Fire.
The next Summer event made Summer last an extra turn. I was forced to abandon one of my caves in order not to lose both to the first player and/or Soren. The first player used a card to steal food from me and Soren attacked my warriors with Amazons and then played another card to covert the last warrior in the space to his side.
I forget the next event of the Summer. I was struggling to survive, even with the Tiger which kept wandering into my cave (We must have drawn that chit from the bag three times at least!) Soren built a camp near me and struck south at Emma, moving past her warrior with a card and entering her undefended cave with its woman. That exposed his original camp to the first player, who descended on it, only for Soren to play Scorched Earth and remove it before it could be converted.
After that it was almost all over. Soren easily captured Emma's other cave with its crops, just in time for the harvest, wiping Emma out so she reappeared on the last turn. We had a turn to stop Soren, and probably would have failed anyway, but the event deck reduced all human movement to one space so guaranteeing our failure. Soren won, although the game ran him a close second.
Chaotic, but I'd like to play again, if only because now I might be able to remember the rules!

And now for Soren's version -

Valley of the Mammoths (thanks Soren!)
Emma, Paul A, Philip and Soren bravely ventured into the Valley Of The Mammoths with their stone age tribes in a scramble for survival and to establish viable civilisations.
Paul's tribe was quickly culled as Philip's hordes, which seem to have been Dhengis Khan's ancestors, swept over the valley on a killing spree.
After initial good look hunting for food and dodging Philip's hordes, Soren managed to build up a decent sized tribe and establish enough camps for a chance of winning the game. But then disaster struck with no animals nearby to hunt and most of the tribe starved to death, and the remaining few had to scramble for the nearest lake and spread out thinly to survive from turn to turn on a few fish.
Philip had built up a huge, seemingly invincible warrior tribe - killing loads of animals for food and breeding like an out of control fertility clinic. Philip looked certain to win the game as Soren's tiny remaining tribe had turned into the Fish-people who could not move away from their lake without starving to death; and Paul's tribe had finally been killed off completely by Philip's hordes, skirmishes with Emma and roaming wild animals. Although, Paul was resurrected with a decent, new tribe, it was no match for Philip's nearby fortress of warriors. But then disaster also struck Philip and most of his tribe suddenly died of starvation as he was left with few animals to hunt.
The future for all of humanity looked pretty bleak with only a few small tribes thinly spread out over the valley and roaming wild animals everywhere.
Only Emma seemed likely to survive at all with a small but stable tribe with camps in a remote mountain range at the edge of the valley, which she had built up quietly after a initial skirmishes with Paul and Philip. But unfortunately her females only seemed capable of giving birth to warriors and not the one extra female she needed to setup the final camp required to win the game. When she started moving her warriors out, we feared that she had the "Homo Camp" fate card to setup an all-male camp to win the game. Fortunately, Emma's warriors did not turn out to be gay, but simply went out to hunt and gather food and to form a defensive ring of warriors around her camps.
Soren's tribe was still tiny and tied to the lake, but a single warrior made a desperate and seemingly suicidal rush for one of Emma's camps - but aided by the "Flintstone-mobile" fate card he was able to simply rush past Emma's defending warriors and straight into the camp left with only a single female in it, who immediately joined the Fish-people tribe and setup camp with Soren's lone warrior - the final camp needed by Soren to win the game.
However, another of Soren's camps were left with only a single female - and recklessly within range of Paul's resurrected tribe, which of course immediately rushed in to "convert" Soren's single female and take over the camp. However, Soren's "Scorched Earth" fate card burned down the camp and killed off the female leaving Paul with nothing except an abandoned camp site - and a fish.
Emma's warriors rushed back to their former camp from the surrounding forests to take it back from Soren, but they failed miserably leaving Emma with only a single camp with a single female in an adjacent cave. Emma's widow looked very atttractive to Soren's lone, soon to be bigamist, warrior who simply walked in and said "Hellooo!" and "converted" her and her cave to the Fish-people, too. Again, leaving Soren with enough camps to win the game.
Luckily for Soren, an event partially immobilized all tribes on the following turn, so that nobody could reach any of Soren's camps and stop him from winning the game without even having to fight for it.
Valley Of The Mammoths is a very chaotic and random game, where bad luck effectively can put you out of the game, but where good luck and others' bad luck can also quickly put you back into the game - and it could go on for hours and hours (if played with the full 6 players and to the full 4 camps to win - we only played to 3 camps, which took about 1.5-2 hours with 4 players). But it is a great game to play for a FUN experience with a crazy, unfolding story of funny events and actions with hilarious cartoony illustrations.

As already mentioned, Tonio had abandoned Valley of the Mammoths for -

Oregon (thanks Woody for this report)
Tonio was keen to give this a spin after swapping it for another game ... Woody had tried it one online and had no idea what he was doing ! A quick walk through the rules with Scott doing a Paxman on Tonio and we were off.
People and building placement game where you have to use two of your four cards to generate grid references in which you can place people of buildings. Points awarded accordingly with bonus mining points that you only disclose at the end of the game. Careful placement, grouping and use of the joker and extra turn cards are clearly important.
It all looked quite close (except for Woody trailing behind) and Tonio pulled out a little lead, only to be beaten at the close by Scott with all his mining points.Worth another outing.
Scott 83, Tonio 64, Woody 59, Vicky 53

Paul and Jon were left looking for another game, but Emma was easily lured away from her group with the promise of a battle to be the king of –

Small World
After a few tries of Small World: Underground, it was nice to return to the familiar surroundings of the overground version. This was played with all the race and ability expansions, which meant that there was more than a little perusing of various player aids throughout the game.
I didn’t keep a detailed note of what happened, but basically Emma started off with some skeletons, which reproduced remarkably quickly. Paul chose the Barbarians, which also took a strong foothold, and Jon started with the height-challenged Pygmies. Paul’s second race was the Amazons, which swept across Jon and Emma’s races, and therefore made 2 enemies. Jon retaliated with some Elves, whilst Emma continued her assault with the Skeletons. Unfortunately, she kept them active for a little too long, and only had time to bring on one more race – the Pixies.
Paul declined his remaining Barbarians for a final round assault with some Ratmen, and Jon pulled out some White Ladies (these were also Wealthy and had 4 more coins on them, making them worth 11 points before they had even entered the board. So, as a result of this final windfall, and a nice little feud between Emma and Paul, Jon was able to sneak ahead for the victory.
Jon 106; Paul 96; Emma 91

And now for some co-op action -

Forbidden Island (thanks again Woody)
If you think you’re getting an unbiased review, think again !! (well what do you expect, you’d only have positive things to say about one of your babies !) Having finished Oregon, the same quartet sat down for a quick spin of Forbidden Island. A meaty game it is not, a good way to get novices and kids into board gaming, then yes, look no further.
Sensibly, the team accepted Scott’s demand that they start on the hardest level. With roles and treasures dealt, play ensued. Communication and strategy change ensured the team looked on for a victory, despite the appearance of water rising cards twice in the first round of play. However, it was not to be ... with four cards remaining in the draw pile and one of them being water rising, Tonio needed to draw two and avoid the disaster card. It didn’t happen and the team sunk without trace.
Tonio, Scott, Woody, Vicky - all lost

And now to find out who was best at rolling dice to become the -

King of Tokyo (thanks Scott for this one)
To wind down we thought we’d battle it out over Tokyo and each other, there were a couple of frowns from James and Woody but they agreed eventually since they didn’t have many other choices and majority rules! The game was new to Vicky who picked it up quickly, the rest of the players being Scott, Philip & Soren.
True to form and really not wanting to play the game, Woody didn’t seem to last very long, a bit too greedy on sticking around in Tokyo and eventually remembering you can’t heal in Tokyo was soon out of the running and dead in the water. This left a deadly duo of James and Soren who were both in Tokyo and both next to each other at the table, with an eye on destroying the rest of the table, there was just one flaw in their plan, they couldn’t roll any attacks despite cards allowing them to re-roll. There may have been a small graze given out but that was all and soon the tables turned on James who was out next, Soren had run for the hills at the first sign of trouble.
Vicky sat precariously low on health and with a lot of victory points rolling had failed to address her poor health, she didn’t quite survive to fight another day, I guess giant monsters don’t recover quite the same way the other animals at the vets do.
This left a rather battered table with Scott, Soren and Philip left, Philip had done a good job of hiding in the corner collecting victory points and there was a small allegiance between Scott and Soren to kill Philip before he won; there was just one small flaw in that plan, neither of us could roll sufficient attacks. It was so bad that we all ended up slowly healing to near max and rather than trying to kill each other off it became a race to get to 20 points. With lots of energy and a card available for some bonus points, it was in Soren’s grasp a split second before the rest of us.
Soren – 1st (20 points); Scott – 2nd (19); Philip -3rd (16); Vicky 4th – deceased; James 5th – deceased; Woody – last - deceased

And finally - yet more dice -

Tumblin' Dice (thanks to Woody for this summary)
A bit of mindless fun to end the evening .... 3 games were played. A tiered board and four dice each. Flick the dice down the board, each tier being more risky and therefore more rewarding. Points scored based on the value of the dice multiplied by the tier it is on. Challenge is to try and flick the dice in the right position, dislodge your opponents whilst protecting your own.

Game 1Vicky 55, Woody 105, Scott 101, James 118.

Game 2Woody 111, Emma 96, Jon 109, Paul 167, James 58 ... note James gatecrashed the game and after starting with 4 smaller dice from another game, he moved to dice from King of Toyko

Game 3Jon 135, Paul 135, James 71, Woody 116 .... Jon wins on a play-off

Also played tonight were Troyes and Mamma Mia, but we have no details I'm afraid.
And then it was time to pack away our huge stack of dice, and melt off into the night, promising to reconvene next week at the same time and place.....

Saturday, 9 July 2011

The BBQ Birds of IBG..........

Saturday 9th July was the date of the second annual IBG BBQ, which saw an impressive 20 adults and 10 children (and 3 'pre-children'...) descend on Jon's house for an afternoon of fire-cooked food, plenty of drink and a generally fun social time.

Special mention should go to Ian, who came even though it was his son's birthday, and also Vicky & Maynard, who drove all the way from Dorset to be with us (not quite true, but close enough...)

The overwhelming feedback from some of the slightly suspicious IBG-spouses was - "We were amazed at how normal everyone was!" I'm still not sure whether that statement makes me feel proud, or slightly offended, that our womenfolk should think that we all hang out with a bunch of goofy nerds on a Wednesday night......

Anyway, thanks to everyone who turned up and helped make it such a fun event (especially Gareth, for his pre-event assistance in the kitchen - learning how to prepare fennel into the bargain....) and for the good Lord who caused the sun to shine on us all (eventually...)

We were all having so much fun that I forgot to take any photos, but thanks to Maynard, the day will be forever remembered by these 3 portraits of 3 lovely ladies - Rach, Petra and Tanya. I'll leave you to guess who is who.......


Wednesday, 6 July 2011

The night that Scott lost his Mojo.........

Players: Scott, Amanda, Philip, Barry, Noel, Gareth, Paul, Jon, Jim, Woody, Barrie, Tonio, Scott II, Wii

Tonight saw 14 IBG’ers congregate at the London Apprentice, for more fun and gaming adventures. It was a warm welcome to 2 of Barry’s friends – Wii and Scott (obviously now called Scott II….) who joined us for the first time. It was also nice to see Jim again after a long absence, although he seemed to have turned up purely to try a subversive recruitment campaign for the Epsom Games Group. Good try Daddy-O, but the IBG’ers know when they’re onto a good thing…..

A funny mix of games tonight – a couple of Euro’s, a couple of card games, the odd abstract game and a (sort of) train game. There was even the opportunity for Gareth to attempt the miraculous task of reading the rules to a new 90-minute game, teach it to 2 others and get it played – all in 30 minutes. Yeah – good luck with that one….. You'd better pour yourself a stiff drink and sit down before reading on though - get ready for a shocking result.....

First up was a quick game of -

Perudo (thanks Noel)
This was familiar to everyone except Scott II. Outrageous overestimation and confidence led primarily by Gareth was usually followed by the losing of dice and Barry & Gareth were first to be eliminated. Amanda and Scott traded dice on a number of occasions before both were elimated leaving Noel and Scott II to duke it out for the win.
Noel had all 5 dice remaining to Scott II's 1 but he soon started bleeding dice. It came down to 1 die each, Scott guessed 2 2's. Noel didn't have a 2, duly called him on it and hung on for the win.
Noel - won; everyone else - lost

There were two very quick takers for Jim’s offer of a run-out for -

Egizia (thanks Woody)
Paul and Woody sat down pretty much ready to take a pasting! Early rounds saw Jim grabbing all the bricks and Woody nearly falling over himself to get to the ‘+2 Sphinx’ card. Whilst Woody started to pull away, it was clear that Jim had a plan and having grabbed the ‘Up river’, ‘end of round additional card’ and ‘place two ships at once’ it looked like he would storm through.
Paul suddenly built in all three areas in round 3 and was closing in on the lead. In the end, 4 scoring sphinx cards for Woody and the sale of a large volume of brick at Round 5 saw an unlikely win.
Woody 99; Jim 87; Paul 76

With Scott and Amanda taking a break from the fun to discuss gaming and scuba diving over dinner Wii joined us for a game of -

Pinguin Party (thanks again Noel)
The first round passed innocently enough with almost everyone getting all their cards played and wondering how they could change strategy to screw with others plans on the next 3 rounds. Everyone figured this out pretty quickly and plenty of shutting out opponents occurred in the next 3 rounds.
With 4 people this seemed to be a very interesting game with more layers that was first apparent and Noel managed to take the win from Gareth, Scott II and Wii. Who knows what the scores where though!
Noel left the table feeling pretty good about his (usually upside down) Pinguin stacking skills. His second game later in the night wasn't quite so hot but thankfully that was stopped before the end, so was officially a DNF in the record books.
Noel - won; everyone else - lost (again)

Barrie and Jon were standing around looking for a quick game to play and opted for –

Newcomer Wii wasn’t playing anything at this stage, but the attempts to recruit him were met with – “I don’t play train games”. However, after one round, Barry wandered up as he had been evicted from Perudo, and joined in too, so it turned into a 3-player game.
This was the new version of TransEuropa which has Vexation added as standard. (Why it’s called Vexation is beyond me, especially as it simply consists of 3 coloured sticks…..) Anyway, 6 rounds were played. The game is supposed to continue until someone reaches 12 points, but after 4 rounds, the scores were so low that it was decided to reduce the end-game threshold to 7.
After the fifth round the scores were still very tight, but in the 6th, Barry found himself a fair distance from Stockholm when the round ended, due to some strategically placed coloured track by Jon, which triggered the end of the game. Unfortunately for Jon, he was also a couple of tracks short of his goals, and so Barrie triumphantly took the victory, and was crowned the chief track-layer in all of Europe.
Barrie 4; Jon 7; Barry 10

On her second week at the club it was time for Amanda to play a real game; so Scott, Amanda and Tonio began to set-up - 

Power Grid (thanks Scott for this humble report)
We were quickly joined by Barrie’s new recruits Wii and Scott (not another one you may be thinking). Scott gave everyone the choice of which map and then just selected USA anyway for the ease of teaching Amanda and refreshing the rest of us. Just as we were about to begin, Barrie was looking lost, everyone else having forgotten he was here and so we extended our game to 6.
And we were off with most people cramming in to the cheap areas together. Scott started down in the South East and then was quickly surrounded by Amanda in the East and Wii to the South, Barrie went to the North East while Tonio and Scott2 were central (the west coast being particularly expensive to focus with early on.)
With 6 of us we only needed to reach 6 cities for step 2 and 14 for the end game but with the congested East coast there was little incentive for anyone to pull the trigger on step 2, and it would be too costly for most players to jump across.
The auction started off quite tame until Tonio and Amanda got in to a couple of bidding wars, her keeping an eye on whatever Tonio took his fancy too, the cheap wind farms were too alluring to the pair of them. The rest of us were happy to watch them bid ‘em up high, they were reminded eventually that losing an auction for one plant doesn’t lose you the game.
It may have been a good idea to get in early on power plants this game as a lot of the high capacity ones ended up coming out early, followed by a long dirge of useless ones which eventually a couple of people needed to buy to increase their production at all; so strangely, once someone had finally gotten to step 2, it followed that we didn’t get to step 3 very quickly either as no-one was interested in many power plants on offer and they were being discarded at a snail’s pace.
It was however looking good for a couple of players, primarily Barrie who had invested early in the big plants and now was reaping the rewards of being about to possibly win the game, just before step 3 hit, we had to mildly conspire against him to block as many of the build spots as possible so that he could not reach 14 and end the game while no-one else could power as many as him.
It was looking particularly bad for the bookies favourite Scott who had ended up in a poor position of 3-4-4 and at the front of the queue to buy new plants, nice ones not being available in step 3 until after he’d passed, stuck in a woeful position of last with nothing to be done about it now, his hopes of step 3 coming out a couple of rounds earlier did not come to fruition. Everyone else managed to get a little improvement on their position, unfortunately that also included Barrie with the capacity for 17 and most likely the funds to make the most of it. Everyone had a different capacity so it was just a matter of building enough cities which was easy enough. Especially for Scott who had been sitting on a huge pile of cash and just splurged at the end to get to 20 cities, despite it being worthless as he could power just a little over half of them, there will likely be several letters of complaint from his customers.
For a first game, despite some bidding wars with the trouble maker of the table Tonio (who seems to play Power Grid just to get in to bidding wars and see how much he can make other people pay), Amanda had got a sufficient capacity for an easy 2nd place. Wii had stumbled at the last hurdle having previously being a contender; he couldn’t get the right plant at the end either. Tonio had fought with Barrie for a large capacity plant but in the end settled for one that was smaller and not really sufficient since he needed capacity. Scott2 spent a lot of the game avoiding conflict, starting away from the others in the centre and not bidding plants up much, if at all, past their minimum bids and as such was left with what we didn’t want in an attempt to get some bargains, but this hadn’t quite worked as effectively. Not a good day of Power Grid for those named Scott.
Barrie 16; Amanda 15; Wii 14; Tonio 13; Scott II 12; Scott 11 (I know, I know, it won’t happen again)

Meanwhile, on the ‘table by the window’ –

San Marco (thanks once more, Noel)
After a really enjoyable game of San Marco last week, but perhaps with a feeling that it was a little too random based with 4, Noel, Gareth and Barrie brought it out again for a 3 player, apparently the game's sweet spot. It didn't disappoint and a close and fantastically interesting and decision filled game ensued.
Barrie held the lead (just) for most of the game with Noel and Gareth frequently changing position. We only got one rule wrong this week and we rectified that half way through so who knows we might even get it right all the way through soon after last weeks rules debacle (:-))
In the end in the last round Barrie went out first with lots of points cards and it came down to a difficult decision for Noel on how to divide the cards. After lots of thinking, his brain melted and he presented Gareth with an easy choice. Unsurprisingly Gareth chose wisely and in the final game count up Gareth just moved ahead to take the win.
Gareth 111; Barrie 107; Noel 101

Jon opted to avoid San Marco (after a bad experience playing it with Barrie and Gareth prior to the formation of IBG), and so instead joined Jim and his motley crew for a trip –

This was new to Woody and Jon, but being essentially an abstract, there were not a million rules. Jim started to explain the alternate scoring rules for the newest edition, even though we weren’t playing that one, probably in an attempt to confuse everyone else, but he was soon brought back on track.
The game ebbed and flowed, Jon was prevented from joining two groups together by at least 3 other players, and Paul quietly snuck in for a 2-group victory. Definitely a game that you need to play a second time, once you’ve learned what (not) to do…
Paul 2; Jim 3; Philip 3; Woody 4; Jon 4

The same group then looked for a quickie filler –

Felix the Cat in the Sack
Philip played an awesome bluffing strategy, of bidding high at the beginning of each round, which unfortunately often left him with nothing more than a bag full of angry cats.
As it turned out, Woody just pipped Jon to the victory, to slightly make up for their poor showing at Uptown. I make no bones about it – along with For Sale and High Society, this is one of the best filler card games out there. So there.
Woody 60; Jon 52; Jim 42; Paul 38; Philip 4

As Gareth had abandoned his fateful attempts to learn, teach and play Egizia in 30 minutes, Jon pulled out something a little more realistic –

Queen’s Ransom
This is a curious little card game, which has been played only once before at IBG. The idea is to try to discover who kidnapped the Queen, and at what location she is being held at. This is deduced by secretly looking at pairs of cards which have various numeric values, and whichever pair has the highest value will be the sought after suspect / location.
Gareth and Jon started off by looking at locations, whilst Noel interrogated the suspects. Unfortunately for Noel, Gareth then played a card which mixed up the cards that Noel had already examined, essentially sending him back to square one. Gareth had discovered the location, and was 50/50 on the suspect so he decided to gamble on getting it right. Fate shone on him on this occasion, as he chose correctly. What we learned? In this game, don’t do the opposite of what everyone else is doing….
Gareth - won; Noel & Jon – didn’t

Working our way through Jim’s bag of fun, there was just time for one more quick game –

Coloretto (thanks again Woody)
Different coloured cards, bonus cards and multi colour cards. One column of cards per player with max of three cards in it. Either lay a card from the draw pile of take a column that you want. Idea being to create three large groups of one colour each, bonus cards and as few of any other colour as possible. It was clear that Jim was the experienced player here ... Woody as usual was a little slow on the uptake .. probably more pondering than was really necessary!
Jim 37; Philip 26; Paul 23; Woody 21

There was then an abandoned game of Pinguin Party (3 rounds in when Jon was winning, of course…)

Anyway – that was that. The IBG’ers will meet up again on Saturday for the 2011 Summer BBQ – if the rain holds off……….