Wednesday, 29 June 2016
It's game time at... uhm... now where was it again? Thingummy... ahh...
Contributors: Daniel, David
My abiding memory of the 29th was the full and fruity embracement of the 'slow method' in boardgaming terms as I finally broke my duck with a first game of Kingdom Builder. It was ironic that Jon and Paul started the game debating who was the oldest between the two, as they then went on to play like two old biddies who were queueing for their pension at a closed down Post Office. I have a tendency to play fairly quickly so I'm used to minding the time between turns, but the point when Tom fell asleep on my shoulder finally prompted me to enthusiastically encourage the chaps to oblige us with a slightly more hasty approach to proceedings. At least they both remembered to put on their trousers before leaving the house, so there was an upside.
We were scoring for connecting hotspots on the board and some other stuff with getting cubes into organised lines, but the connections were clearly the biggest opportunity so that's what I went for, figuring that I'd naturally collect some of the other rewards as a by-product. I made a bee-line for some bonus tokens that allowed me to put down extra cubes, and later on added another that let me leap one of my existing pieces into a new space which was handy as I was running out of cubes fairly rapidly and wanted to stretch out to one last connection point. At the end my estimation of the value of the scoring cards proved correct as I totally crushed it - can't remember the exact scores but there was somewhat of a noticeable gap.
Overall it's a fairly simple and abstract game where you stick cubes into boxes and score points for making patterns, with some additional fluff that fortunately elevates it from it's somewhat uninspiring roots and prevents it from becoming murderously tedious. It reminded me a lot of the early style of Euros when they were in their heyday, kind of a big puzzle that you all add stuff to as you go, and not a lot of interaction beyond the occasional moment where somebody goes in a spot you were hoping to grab. I don't know if it's something I'd seek to play multiplayer - think I'd rather sit down to TTR for this sort of thing, which works on similar principles and which I think is a lot more engaging than this - but I do understand why it's popular and might even get this on an app at some point.
We had some piscine flapping at some point which was doubly fun due to Tom's broken fingers, yet another bash at Council of Verona, and a late game of Machi Koro to finish up (I'm going out on a limb here but I'll say that someone named Tom probably won one or more of these).
James B and I started the evening with a game of A Duel Betwixt Us. A two-player card game about duelling Victorian gentlemen. Each player works their mine with an allotted set of miners (including a zombie one, because zombies!) to create, Iron, Silver and Gold Ingots which are then used to create various weapons and armour that are played in front of each player. At the end of a players turn they can choose to start a duel, if you aren't lucky with the draw you can often lose the first few duels with no chance to build any weapons. There's also a sneaking suspicion that whoever goes first is guaranteed victory. Will need some more games to confirm but it feels as though first player gets the ball rolling and there's no way of stopping it.
After that was a game of Deep Sea Adventure with Dan, Jon, Paul and I and which was missing the dice so we used regular dice in a way that still confuses me, albeit I'm easily confused. I think I managed to win this one by being a coward, that's all I can remember, and that Paul always got stranded too far down.
Next up was a game of Bruges with the Bruges: The City on the Zwin expansion with Gareth, Peter and I. I thought it was wonderful, 165 character cards that each have their own artwork and abilities. Players build houses, hire characters and build canals whilst gathering as much prestige along the way. You have to think on your feet a bit and strategy goes out of the window depending on what characters turn up as well as various character combos. I think Peter won this with Gareth second and myself last. I gambled on the plague on the third round and lost about seven workers which didn't help. It's a great game and I would happily play again.
The other table had finished as well by then so Dan, myself, James B, Tom and Philip moved onto a game of Council of Verona. I can't really remember what happened apart from James B won the first round due to Philip moving player markers between two characters. I then think James B won the second round due to another similar mix up.
To finish my evening was a game of slapping, tickling and finger swirling, we also played a game of Happy Salmon.