James B, Philip and I started with a couple of games of Monopoly Deal: The Card Game. Despite the name it's not too bad, the more enjoyable aspects of Monopoly (if there are such) distilled down into under ten minutes. There's set collection and a lot of take that game-play. It's slightly reliant on the luck of the draw and some cards are a bit powerful but it's fast enough that it doesn't really matter. In the first game I managed to win by collecting enough sets of properties using a mix of wild cards and building up enough of a bank to thwart off any attempts to seize my properties. In the second game James managed to steal an entire set from me to claim victory.
After that was a game of Codenames, I was on the team of Dans, whilst James was clue giver for Soren and Philip. It looked as we had thoroughly trounced them but our clue of 'Thames' sent us in the wrong direction a couple of times which was enough to let the other team catch up. However it wasn't to be as we finally figured out it was 'Link' for the clue 'Thames' handing us the win.
Following that we split into two tables, Philip, James, myself and Tash went for a game of Snowdonia using the Snowdonia: The Daffodil Line mini-expansion. A lovely worker placement game where everyone went for slightly different strategies with varying successes. There are some nice mechanics such as the weather change and the ability for the game to essentially play itself if the group take too long or don't manage the resources, this means that there's always a reason to do something.
Philip enacted his strategy of moving his surveyor around the track, building stations, clearing rubble and utilizing action cards that provided end game bonuses for doing so. James meanwhile bought a train early and used the bonus worker to good effect. This extra worker (tempted from the pub) allowed him to clear rubble, build stations and score well on his bonus cards. Tash went for a mixed strategy similar to James whilst I went for concentrating on building rail track and stations using bonus cards that promoted this. At the end we had managed to successfully build the last piece of track linking to Gloucester station and it was time to see who had contributed the most. James won buy a single point from Tash, 105 to 104. Philip then came third with 87 and I pulled up in last with 75. The game had completed sections of the track which hurt my strategy as I was one or two track away from another 35 points. I think I needed to prepare for the change of the weather a bit more as on the sunniest day the game built three sections of track which I couldn't then use. It's actually quite thematic instead of just another cube pusher and would happily play again.
To finish the evening was a few rounds of A Fake Artist Goes to New York which resulted in the usual ham fisted art work and poor guesswork