Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Wombling Free with Mr. John B

Contributor: Daniel

A bijou nonet last night with some Essen stragglers and kickstarter fare making an appearance alongside some golden oldies.

Codenames, in which increasingly bizarre logic was applied to the cluemaster's inane ramblings, resulting in the usual catastrophes all round.

Forge Wars (?) or something or other. Busy KS business, Sarah looked like she wanted to be anywhere else but sat at that table, but James by all accounts managed to catch up on some shut eye, so there's a silver lining.

El Cabellero, which is basically Carcassonne with a points cost and a delayed scoring mechanism. Phillipe put all his effort into protecting one massive tract of land which gave me the freedom to extend my line of conquistador bastards into multiple scoring opportunities, a tactic which worked massively in my favour. Poor David was boxed into a corner as a result of us flanking him on both sides and struggled to break out.

Robinson Crusoe, new to both David and Phillipe, great to get this corker out again. We were repeatedly kicked in the balls for much of the game with snake bites, broken arms, and vicious attacks from dive-bombing Finches. In fairness, we did eat all their baby-eggs.

Exploration and scavenging were a real struggle, particularly as we kept drawing events that exhausted our supply of driftwood and food, but the upside was building up a nice fat stack of wild animal cards along the way. We kept morale up as high as possible so that, as the Soldier, I could afford to go hunting as soon as possible, and Chef David could keep us from starving. Philpetto the carpenter (yes, he's a real boy) was able to get our shelter up with roof and all just in time for the bad weather, which led to only minor starvation and hypothermia. Despite going right to the wire (and when does this game ever finish easily?) we managed to complete the scenario with a victory - hurrah for us!

Underground, Overground, some sort of Womble game anyway, where John B, Tom Lee Travis, and Raj built happy little villages only to subsequently send all the cheery inhabitants to meet their terrible fate in a dungeon of doom. Seems to be one of those games that is on the zeitgeist of putting paragraphs of flavour text into Eurogames, leaping forward into game design circa 1987. What will those crazy guys get up to next, day-glo nylon socks and hugging strangers in a remote Hampshire field?

Plus there was also Automatica (or something), wherein the Wombles switched to car production in what appeared to be an insanely busy yet seemingly intuitive game about production chains and making vroom-vroom noises.

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