Wednesday, 24 September 2014


Wow! Four of the five newbies returned, not only is that a record but it’s the closest I’ve seen to a miracle over the last few years, great to have you back one and all! And welcome to Chris, a fellow Waggler and owner of

We were zapped downstairs and although that’s not much of a problem it does mean the public gets to see us in our full glory. After one false start and an ever increasing turn out games were chosen and off we went in our little groups.

Dead of Winter

This attracted five; Tom and Jim, Chris, Jon and Dan. No idea what went on but I’m betting they all got zombies after putting up a good fight..

Meanwhile John Bandettini had an upcoming Essen release in the form of Heroes Wanted. The call rang out and suckered in were James, Andy, Natasha and Noel. No report for this one either although I did hear that Storage Wars could be a better game..

Puerto Rico

So down to me and my lot, Paul II, Gareth II and Arturo to get to grips with this classic. Gareth whipped through the rules and in true Gareth style showed us all how to play. Saying that good efforts from Paul and Arturo on the buildings and Arturo did impressively well with bonus points come game end. It’s a great game and I mustn’t leave it to one game a year.. keep reminding me someone, please!

Final Scores; Gareth - 58, Arturo - 49, Neil - 44, Paul - 33.

7 Wonders

We followed that up with another beauty! Very close this one, very close indeed. Arturo and I went for some early military might although Gareth with his two freebies on his board came through strongest come nightfall.

He also scored well financially. I maxed out on my pyramid building scoring me a whacking great 20 points, although only 6 on other buildings where both Paul, with 24, and Arturo, 20, performed brilliantly. Not much going on with the yellow cards to be fair and Paul managed good returns on both purple and green cards..

Final Scores; Neil - 45, Paul & Arturo - 43, Gareth - 40.

For Sale

So, another quick game followed for the four of us. Another classic of course. For some reason I was allowed to pick up some great properties relatively cheaply. And then even better flog them on for hefty profits. Paul was paying some attention to come in second place and it was good to see Arturo pipping Gareth for third!

Final Scores; Neil - 73, Paul - 63, Arturo - 55, Gareth - 50.

Machi Koro

Talking of Essen.. last year’s gem had a double run out for Neil, James, Natasha and Noel. My first game strategy of wheat farming didn’t work too well it must be said. The other three didn’t fair that much better with Natasha’s 6 rolling not earning him anything - buy a 6 card for heaven’s sake - until Noel got himself going with a cheese factory and it was game over.

The second run out was a bit closer an affair with Noel again doing well and me being involved. James had gone the cafe and restaurant route, too many jacket potatoes I reckon, he got very little. And then Natasha started rolling 4s and that was that… blimey this finishes in a hurry, just when I needed a little time to build on my extensive portfolio…

And thus ended September for the IBG. Great month, roll on Spieltober!!

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Only Three Weeks to Essen!!

After last week’s turnout it was all about the new folk this week… welcomes to Paul, Tom, Jim, Arturo and his lady Trulli (according to Dan)! We’ve got this elaborate process f naming differentiating attendees by adding a number to their name, and this is no random process I can tell you. So, Tom, you’ll be known as Tom II (although he did offer to buck the system and go by Harrison, some all action hero actor we thought, just turned out that’s his surname), and Paul you’ll be Paul II, very papal. Despite being introduced as James, and with me struggling to remember how far along the road with those we are (it’s two, der!), Tom II was calling him Jim most of the evening so that’s good for us too. Intriguing that the newbies outnumbered the oldies, although it must be recorded that the quality of the latter was exceptionally high: Paul, Neil, Philip and Dan.

Just in case you’re not quite in the Essen spirit yet let me plagiarise Mr Snowdonia’s blog from during the last week. It’s entitled ‘Hot Goss!’

It's late September so it must be time to look through those Essen rumours, eh? For those of us lucky enough to pretend this is a job-of-work, there are just three weeks to go until we can lie down in front of the colossal snowblower that is Spiel and offer ourselves up for distribution. 

pastedGraphic.png Purveyors of all things cute and resin-moulded, Gorfra Games have just announced that they won't be revealing their Essen game, or accepting pre-orders, until 6PM on the night of the set-up day (Weds 15th October) and, even then, pre-orders will only be open for 20 minutes. Apparently, according to Gorfra's Co-Directors Gormiti and Frank (who bear a remarkable resemblance to The Proclaimers), this is

"simply to annoy the f*** out of everyone else at the Show when the 1000 copy printing sells out completely blind!”

When asked for his reaction, the chap at the next urinal asked me to not speak to him again because it stopped him from weeing.

pastedGraphic.png Aggravation-seeking low-lives Shite Games have claimed this year's public show as 'their biggest one yet' and promise to shock the hobby world once more with the release of Oscar Pistorius: The Boardgame; OP:TB is a dexterity game where players are required to sit, cross-legged, on the floor and play Tiddlywinks with live-ammo until someone gets convicted of culpable homicide. Asked what it's like being such a bunch of twats, Marco Shitbag (CEO) replied: "Bunch of Twats is next years product".

pastedGraphic.png Altitude-bothering, hairless component-fiddler Stefan Felled (no relation, not even Soundex) has signed a five game deal with The 1000 Piece Jigsaw Company to develop a series of Eurogames based on their best selling 'Cats Playing With Some Wool' range. Expect the usual 'point salad' mechanisms around an innovative 'Build the Edge bits first' action selection process.

pastedGraphic.png With 2014 being the second year of Halls 1, 2 and 3; the Messe management are offering a nostalgia tour of the 'old Halls' for those who simply cannot cope with the way everything's been moved about. For €20, members of the public are shepherded through 'the old entrance' and left to wander amongst the plaster dust, torn Aluminium and discarded cigarette butts of the refurbishment work; dreamily they will be able to recall "...that's where Adlungspiele always exhibited...", "I picked up my first Zooloretto 'Show Special' tile from there" and "I vomited my oesophagus inside-out after a dodgy frikadelle in that atrium" etc.

pastedGraphic.png Are you 'mad' for promotional gimmicks? Do you become an incontinent at the words 'Limited Edition'? If so, then this year promises a veritable prolapse of hard-to-get/straight-on-to-eBay goodies - here's a teasy taster:
o Power Grid: Nylon Rod - rub on your sleeve to make those Station auction phases truly electric!
o Russian Railroads: Engineer Putin - place one of your workers to borrow a worker from another player and then, when you have it in your play area, claim it's always been in YOUR colour and keep it...with tanks.
o Spamisado Mini: A variation on the popular 2013 giveaway 'Kamisado Mini', but made of reclaimed pork and ham.
o Obi Wan Hanabi: A new suit to add to the base game but, when drawn, you must face them TOWARDS you. If anyone gives you a clue during the rest of the game, you must answer "These aren't the cards you're looking for" or lose a life.
o Snowdonia: Dr Beeching - a new Contract card shuffled in to the bottom 10 cards of the deck that, when revealed in the card line, resets the game to it's original starting position. You think the game was cruel BEFORE?

That's all the steaming logs to have dropped from the Sewage Outfall of Essen news this week; tune in next week when we'll be asking Martin Wallace about his latest litigation battle*

*There's bound to be one. It's just a matter of time with Martin.

So, to the games;

Greed (cheers Paul!)

Greed is fast becoming the starting game of choice, as it's pretty easy to pick up, doesn't take too long and has enough depth and variety to sustain multiple plays.

This week saw Neil and Paul sit down to play as they were the two early birds, but then Paul II arrived for the first time and Philip arrived so we turned it into a four player game. Then Tom and James sprang from nowhere, also keen to play, so Philip stepped aside gallantly to allow our new friends to join in, albeit with a cutting "I don't much like this game anyway"

So Neil and Paul were the only old hands at the table, although the new Greedsters were up to speed very quickly indeed. 

Particularly impressive was James who within three cards had set up an engine by playing Thugs which meant that every additional Thug he played earnt him $30k from the bank. Ker ching! 

It was a good move, but not quite good enough as Paul went down the a similar route as last week, pursuing a 'Holding' strategy, and set about creating Hearts and Spanners oriented businesses, thereby getting multiple dollar tokens for each play. He also played The Ritz, giving him five additional tokens, and then played the action that allowed him to burn 'a holding of his choice' and gain $15k for each token on it, giving a markup of 50%. Bye bye Ritz, hello $$$s.

And that was that. 

Final Scores; Paul - 280, Neil - 170, Jim - 190, Tom II- 130, Paul II - 105.


Philip decided to sit out Greed and set up Nations instead, good man. It does require a little bit of setting up but then any monster of a game should do I guess.

Philip and I were up for our third outings with my combined scores not reaching either of the total VPs Philip had scored. I decided I needed to be a little more prudent and try and stay involved in every aspect of the game this time. Famine is bad. Too much military might isn’t good. No coal/stone is a disaster. No monuments is foolhardy. Battles are good, War likewise. Gold is crucial. Buildings and Colonies and Military too. And you need an Adviser of course. Blimey, no wonder I hadn’t coped very well previously, far too much to think about. [And that ties in nicely with my now completed MFA dissertation essay: The Man Who Couldn’t Stop Thinking. So now you know.]

The game. Tom took first player and accepted advice to buy himself an elephant. That it had much military might, and was the only military card available meant that this advice was unquestionably brilliant. From there he accepted the warrior gauntlet: battling, colonising and warmongering, and proceeded to set himself up very nicely throughout the rest of the game. Who said you couldn’t do well following a single strategy? Anyway, when he picked up XXX as his adviser and suddenly didn’t need to feed his military he looked as though he might be getting ahead.

On the other side of me Jim was prudently weighing up his options and his peacenik attitude soon came to the fore. He set himself up with an impressive amount of stability that meant he could comfortably cope in times of war. He was also garnering resource laden buildings and his foray into the monuments also allowed him to buy more at a great rate of exchange. He was also picking up knowledge on the book track, and thus earning some useful VPs come the end of each age.

Philip looked busy but I think it’s fair to say that the preparation and rules overview might have exhausted him. He tinkered with some resource gathering, only latterly got into military although pretty effectively, and picked up a few monuments although nowhere near the number he’d gone for in his last game. He did collect some additional workers which helped scoring buildings but then so had Tom and Jim.

Right, time to see how my ‘little bit of this, little bit of that’ strategy fared. I didn’t take any extra workers but did get amongst the monuments early on and picked up 2nd place, worth 2VPs per age on the book track. It was only at the end of the game that I suffered through an event but it only cost me 1VP. I found myself fairly zooming through the advisers gaining some great little bits of help at just the right time. My resource management was tight but I never ran short like in previous games, whew!

Unfortunately we found ourselves out of time in the final age so had miss out the final round of the eight. Looking at the final scores it could well have made a difference to the result but that’s the way it goes.

So, to the scoring. Jim looked to have collected quite a few VPs during the game but had lost a few in wars and events too. He scored 15 to my 16 here, with Tom on 12 and Philip at 9. Colonies were all pretty even but my monuments gave me a useful 5, Philip picking up 4 and Jim only 1VP. The additional workers brought them all back towards were I thought I might have had an unassailable lead with Philip and Jim scoring 12 each, Tom 10, to my meagre 6. Then it was down to the add up everything else and divide by 10 bit… all that gold, food, stone, military might, stability and books. Again pretty close with a spread of 5-8. Very close at the end but I squeezed through by 2 VPs. Very impressive first games for Jim and Tom though. They could be serious gamers chaps, be warned!!

Final Scores; Neil - 35, Jim - 33, Tom II - 32, Philip - 29.

Meanwhile, on the Dan and Paul hosted table… 

Council of Verona (thanks Dan)

We only played half a full game of Verona, but what a great little game as it seems to godown well with pretty much everybody. 


The funny/party game was a team game and good filler material.

Robinson Crusoe

In Robinson the island ate us, we all ended up frozen to death in a crazy tropical snowstorm, who would have thunk?

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Only Four Weeks to Essen!

Have I mentioned I’m getting a little excited? Didn’t think so. Anyway, I am. With Mr Sinden’s prompting I have up for auction various games that I’ll be taking with me to Essen. There’s fifteen of them. So far I have three sold and bids on another eight. I’ve made just under 250€ so far, that’s more new games I really don’t need, have little space for, and will possibly never play. And yet I’m excited, ridiculously so. Breathe, calm down, relax.

Last week the call to arms brought out a mad thirteen: Paul, Dans I and II, Dom, Tom, Jon, Jeroen, Philip, Andy, Noel, Gareth II, James and me, huzzah! We were out to impress the pub with our custom and bonhomie. As Dan II proceeded to drink for Britain it was down to Gareth to eat the menu, boy did he order some food…

There was quite a store of games on offer and several had some runs out. 

Greed (many thanks Paul)
Whilst the waited for the additional forces to muster, the first five along for the evening started off by passing the Thugs, Holdings and Action cards around the table with a 'quick' game of Greed.

Gareth II and Neil played actions to stop other players getting too much money, whilst playing lotsa Thugs too. Jeroen and Dan were trying a mixed bag with differing results. Paul was going for out and out holdings.

The three key cards in the game were:

Paul playing a holding that gave him an additional $5k / dollar token on it at the end of the game, which is where he started to predictably load up his dollar tokens.

Dan playing the ritz with some schmancy add ons which allowed him to place eight dollar tokens on it in one go - £80,000, very nice.

On the last turn Paul then played an action that allowed him to place as many tokens on one holding as the holding from his opponents that had the most holding. He of course used this to better Dan's impressive eight tokens, by placing eight on the card that made each one worth £15,000 with the resulting £120,000 giving him a runaway victory. 

All in the last card. He remembered to say thank you to Dan.

After quite a few plays of this game, it is still providing plenty of variety with different strategies able to complete for victory.

Final Scores; Paul - 240, Dan II - 120, Neil - 95, Gareth - 80, Jeroen - 40.

Whilst that was going on I’m sure I espied Tom and Philip playing Splendor. No idea who won though.

Cash 'n Guns (cheers Jon)

A quick opener for 6 players was required whilst the Greed table finished off, so Jon's recent Games Expo acquisition was broken out. A quick rules explanation from James and the shooting began.

The general summary of a fast and chaotic game was that Tom and Noel stood toe to toe most of the time, Jon ducked out of some early exchanges, Phil chose the wrong moments to be brave and Andy pretty much flew under the radar.

James was playing the macho role, taking a couple of hits but still choosing to stand his ground when he pointed his gun at Jon, only to find a black foam beretta staring straight back at him. Was Jon bluffing? Definitely not - in fact he had played his fire-first 'Bang Bang Bang' card, and left James in a crumpled, convulsing heap on the floor - out of the game for good. If only you could do that in more games….

Anyway, Andy's quiet, ruthless tactics paid off, and he sneaked out a win with $90k. Everyone else had less than that, but exactly how much remains a mystery….

Final Scores; Andy - $90k, Noel - ?$75k, Tom - ?$70k, Jon - ?$65k, Phil - ?$50k, James - dead (Ed: Doesn’t that read beautifully?!)

Following that a bunch of hopefuls ran off into the Dead of Winter and I know they failed in whatever it was they were attempting to do. The details remain in the inner sanctum.
Meanwhile Five Tribes, the latest Days of Wonder offering made its debut, but once again I have no idea what occurred, and I would be interested as it’s quite ‘hot’ in the games world at present….

Trains (thanks again Jon!)

Four willing participants were found to have another go at this 'Dominion with a board' game - and this time it was with Jon's new map (Germany / US). The German side of the map was used, and it has an interesting array of cities and connection spaces (instant 3 or 4 points). Jon chose to set up next to the connections to SW Europe, Paul and Neil took opposite corners, and Noel sat on Jon's lap. 

There were no cards in play which enabled Waste to be trashed, but the ever popular Tourist Train (score points as the game goes on) was available, along with the equally popular Garage (draw 2 cards, discard 2 cards).

It was interesting that a variety of strategies were employed. Jon (unusually) chose to start playing on the board, building into the adjacent connection spaces before Noel could get there. Neil also made his intentions clear, starting to build track and stations across the Eastern edge, accumulating an impressive array of waste as he went. Paul took a more mixed approach, starting to build out slowly into some nearby cities, but also attempting to build his deck with some useful cards, including a few Tourist Trains. Noel was very single-minded, building almost nothing on the board for the first 3/4 of the game, but picking up a healthy amount of Tourist Trains, along with some high money cards and several card-cycling cards. This led him to soon have a fine engine that was cycling cards at a frightening rate.

Jon and Paul had also picked up Tourist Trains, but Noel was clearly ahead on points in this department, and was the first to start purchasing the Skyscrapers. Paul had been maxing out the stations in some cities, but also started to purchase some points cards towards the end of the game. 

Jon tried to pick up some points cards, but always seemed to fall one money short of the skyscraper and had to settle for the less valuable points cards. Neil continued on his single-minded train route and would not be distracted (or more likely, didn't have the money!) to buy any points cards.

Noel suddenly turned his attention to the board, and had enough wealth to enter the connection spaces that Jon already occupied, picking up a useful 9 points with relative ease. Paul found that he could end the game on his turn, with 4 piles of cards running out, and the scores were totalled. It was pretty obvious that Neil and Jon were out of the running, but a quick look at the board position showed that Paul might be closer to Noel than originally expected. And so it turned out to be - a few measly points separated them at the end, with Noel's carefully planned 'don't play to the board until the last few turns' strategy just paying off. Well played sir!

The upcoming ('Rising Sun') expansion looks interesting, not only for the 2-player boards, but also for the 'route bonuses', that will certainly make Neil's strategy much more viable. Watch this space….

Final Scores; Noel - 60, Paul - 57, Jon - 47, Neil - 34.

Valley of the Kings (Jon, star of the week!**)

Another outing for the latest little deck-building game. After last week's minimalist scoring, would they improve this week (answer - a bit!)

As always, the game is completely about timing - when do you entomb your cards to start scoring for them? Andy and Jon had started collecting sets from the get-go, and both played some attack cards to reduce other player's hands on a couple of occasions.

However, the most noteworthy event during the game was Phil's rather strange vow of silence that he seemed to have taken. Whereas everyone else would commentate on their actions ('I'm going to use theses cards to buy this card and then entomb this one...'), Phil decided that swift actions with no verbal commentary but the odd piece of interpretative mime would suffice. A kind of cross between a Trappist monk and Marcel Marceau…

Regardless of these odd happenings, Jon and Andy had timed their entombings the best, with Jon's statues helping to win the day. I think that this game could see quite a bit more play at IBG, but only if Jon chooses to bring it along. So will he? In the words of Phil - 'My lips are sealed…'

Final Scores; Jon - 30, Andy - 22, Phil - 13, Dom - 12.

Kingdom Builder (cheers Noel, especially for being such a humble victor)

With a fine selection of games on offer it was decided Kingdom Builder was next up for Neil, Paul and Noel. Neil actually professed his excitement level to be a resounding 7/10 so with that exhilarating endorsement Kingdom Builder was set up with scoring to be horizontal lines, individual settlement areas and adjacency to location hexes. 

The special tokens allowed to place extra on sand, add one to 3-in-a-row, and move one to water and to your current terrain card. Short story made shorter, Noel had lots of tokens and points, Neil and Paul not so many but the cashews were nice. 

Final Scores; Noel - 75, Paul - 38, Neil - 35. (To be fair Noel went first and picked up 5 tokens in his first two moves, impressive to say the least. Paul and I took another 6 turns each before we realised the game was over long ago!)


With plenty of time still in hand it was over to one Paul and I knew Noel wasn’t so keen on. It was the only way we were going to stop him. James jumped in, I know this is on his Essen ‘pick-up-cheap’ list. I let him go first.

Paul put up a fine performance of running through the rules I just reminded him of although we did catch both Noel and James with 11 tokens on occasion. I’ve been sticking to a strategy of working towards cards in the second row that score points and not worrying so much about collecting sets for the bonus noble tiles.

It was close. James was within three turns of reaching the magic 15 having picked up a noble. Paul also took one and was starting to look at the expensive top row. Noel came an admirable second showing what a roll he was on tonight. But I stonked it you know, sometimes being a genius is blissful. (If Only 1982-2014)

Final Scores; Neil - 16, Noel - 14, James - 11ish, Paul - 8ish.

After that I saw some Council of Verona being played, I love that game! Not a clue who did what to whom and why or even whether anyone survived. What a mysterious evening!

Loopin' Louis

Everyone’s played this, except me of course… dexterity game see, not really built for dexterity although at least I didn’t have to try and unwedge myself from the chair, more a case of taping the plastic thingy in time. Reminds me of the time I joined a reggae band. They let me play the triangle, which was nice. I just had to stand at the back and ting.

Anyway, first game, Paul, handily to my left, took himself out pretty swiftly. I just kept on tingin’. Then Dom, or was it Dan (I was concentrating so hard I it failed to register) blew himself away so Tom too over whilst I kept on tingin’. James, the most experienced looper in the business was looking good until he lost two tokens in succession and the impossible looked on until Tom, substitute Tom, knocked me off my perch. I almost won a dexterity game, I mean, come on!

So we play it again. Almost identical game plays out. Except of course, I win. How many dexterity games has it taken for me to win one? In fact I won one the week before at Paul’s house, Tumblin’ Dice. Maybe I am built for these things after all?

So, did we impress the pub with our efforts? Well photos were being taken, our audience reached it’s capacity attendance for maybe a half hour spread across the course of the evening: one! Of course we did, although the chef was pleased to hear that Gareth’s on shift next week, he was exhausted.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

The Build up to Essen

So, I booked the hotel last October, never one to leave these things too late, you know? The Horaholiday for summer '14 saw us checking out the hotel again, making sure it was still there and the like. Here's number one son;

And so I've been keeping away from the online stores and trying not to succumb to sundry enticements to buy another game - James, you're the perfect temptress. My list for Essen is divided into pre-purchases including a number of kick-starters, then 'I GOTTA HAVE ITS' which number way too many, and then there's stuff I intend to, but most likely won't, play before I buy. Time will tell.

More info available on the Geek, my very own geek list which actually made it onto the front page briefly, I Can But Dream.

As it was I had to make do with gaming away from the club this week due to baby Hora turning 12. Here's us recently in the Czech Republic;

Many thanks to big bad Jon for the write up this week, sounds a little different but interesting nonetheless. James and I played two games of Letters From Whitechapel early in the week, Jack won both times. Friday saw a great trip to the Dawsey's and the introduction to me of Tumblin' Dice, top fun, Twin Tin Bots, purgatory, plus Greed, an additional to the Horawishlist, and the Name's the Game: Paul, which worked well in fact and which Paul won.

Anyway, over to Jon: Some form of gamer-related crisis in West London left the IBG'ers decimated with only 6 hardy souls remaining - Philip, Dan, Jon, Dom, Paul A, Jeroen, so it was quality over quantity this evening:

Valley of the Kings

Jon's newly-sleeved (courtesy of the very generous Mr Horabin!) was brought out to start the evening. It was new to everyone, although all players were familiar with Dominion which helps.

This was a very strange game. For some reason, everyone was finding it difficult to generate enough purchasing power, which was probably related to the lack of entombing which was occurring. Jon was trying to play some cards which caused everyone to discard or sacrifice cards, but seemed to come across the other players' Offering Tables every time. There was also a concerted effort by more than one player to use their Shabti to sacrifice juicy cards from the pyramid, which further reduced the amount of time available to get an engine going.

And then, Paul suddenly uttered - "Oh - there's only a few cards left, and I haven't started entombing yet!" And then began a frantic scramble to get anything possible into everyone's tombs. Jon had entombed the most cards, but they were mostly worth only 1 point each. Philip had only 5 cards, but with a 4-card set, he scored 17 points. Surely that measly total wouldn't be enough to win? Well, despite Jon getting close, it wasn't close enough, and the less said about Paul and Jeroen's sparsely-furnished tombs the better. Let's just say that they wouldn't be likely to end up on Lara Croft's radar anytime soon...

Final Scores: Philip - 17, Jon - 15, Jeroen - 7, Paul - 5.

Jeroen left at this point, leaving only 5 players for the rest of the evening. And the unanimous decision as to play;

Sherlock Holmes Consulting Detective

This is a fantastic game, that Jon had played with Dom a couple of weeks ago (Ed: was I not there too? hey? all that bloody effort cycling to Brentford, pumping the tyres up, in the rain). It's a kind of 'choose your own adventure' experience, but is much more open-ended and deductive. Players take the role of Sherlock Holmes' sidekicks, and a charged with solving some form of mystery in old London Town. 

They are provided with some background to the case, a map of London showing hundreds of locations, a directory (which identifies the location of numerous individuals and businesses) and a copy of a newspaper for that day. And away you go! Players decide which locations to visit based upon the evidence they collect, and then consult the game manual to find out what happens at each location. The idea is to try to solve the case by visiting as few locations as possible, with enough information to answer a number of questions posed at the end of the manual. 

Unfortunately, it's impossible to provide any detail of the case that was played without giving away major spoilers, but suffice to say that there was a murder, a lady, a jewel and a hideous code. Fantastic!

The 5 would-be sleuths pondered for the best part of 2 hours, before arriving at the correct solution (albeit with some help from Sherlock Holmes himself along the way). They didn't tally their score at the end (based on accuracy of solution and number of locations visited) but it probably wasn't very high, considering their 'visit as many locations as possible' strategy!

This is definitely more 'experience' than 'game', but if you're up for a couple of hours of head-scratching, discussion and amateur sleuthing, then this will be right up your alley.

(Ps this has almost instantly become one of my favourite games - it's elementary...)

BTW - the pub is changing hands this week, with Adrienne and Simon moving on to another pub in Isleworth. Adrienne has briefed the landlord that we meet each Wednesday, so hopefully not much (if anything) will change. Here's wishing A&S all the best for their new establishment.