Sunday, August 05, 2007

Damascus 08/03/07

A great night for gaming, we had 21 attendees, and we played 13 games. At the table:

  • Jennifer, Seth & Justin Weinstein
  • Rick Pasquale
  • Lance Slifka
  • David, Noreen, Corwin, and Andrew Fair
  • Bill Trac
  • Ruben & Melinda Carbonell
  • Jason Cheng
  • David & Martha Briggs
  • Scott & Carly Fisher
  • Rose Byington
  • Scott Fox & Judy Trent
  • Bill Salvatore
I started out the night by setting up and trying to read the rules to Age of Empires III: Age of Discovery, but alas, found no takers. Maybe next week... Meanwhile, Lance played Can't Stop with Corwin, and won 3 columns to 2.

When we reached critical mass, I got Jennifer, Jason, and Rick together for a few hands of Poison. It was the first play for both the J-initialed players, and Jennifer (16) did very well, winning by a single point over Rick (17). Jason was close behind with 23. In other news David Fair (32) was also playing.

Jennifer and Rick rustled up new arrivals David & Martha, and they set off into the abandoned mines in search of Diamonds, in Diamant. Rick reports:
No misprint. Rick foolishly kept gambling against disaster to catch up, but instead ended up poisoned, bitten by snakes, trapped by a cave-in, and finally, caught in 2 separate explosions.
Keep in mind the results of this game if Rick ever offers to take you spelunking... Martha (41) won a narrow victory over Jennifer (40) and David (27). In other news Rick (3) was also playing.

Ruben, Melinda, Bill T, and Lance played Wizard. This is a trick-taking card game played with a 60-card deck (1-13 in 4 suits, plus 4 Wizards and 4 Jesters). The game is played over a set number of rounds (number varies with number of players) and each round, you deal each player only one more card than they received in the previous round, then players have to predict how many tricks they will take. This can be very hard in rounds with few cards in hand, but it gets easier as the game goes on. Ruben (440) proved most adept, while Melinda (410) and Bill T (410) tied for second. In other news Lance (290) was also playing. OK, I'll stop that joke now...

Jason, Scott Fisher, Carly, and I played Stack Market. This is an odd mixture of dice and dexterity. I feel like we may have gotten a rule or two wrong as it seemed that the first round would never end. Eventually, we finished the round, and called the game. David (80) used his tallest building bonuses to win, followed by Scott (40), and Jason (30) and Carly (30).

Scott Fox taught Rick, David, and Martha, the wonderfully painful game of Sticheln. In this game, you try to duck taking tricks that have your "pain" color cards in them, while taking tricks without it. Rick (37) mastered the concept quickly, and was followed by David (35) David (37) mastered the concept quickly, and was followed by Rick (35), and Martha (29). It seems the three new players punished the experienced player, as Scott Fox (-1) pulled up the rear...

Judy, Rose, Noreen, Bill T, and Carly played a game of bean-harvesting goodness, Bohnanza. This was Judy's first play, and she grasped the concepts here well, as she won with a score of 16, followed by Carly (14), Bill (13), Rose (12) and Noreen (9).

Bill S, Bill T, Corwin, Carly, and Judy played Can't Stop. 5 players is about my top limit for the game, as otherwise it can get very hard to have the game end. Judy pushed her luck into a win, followed by Bill T, Bill S & Carly (tied), and Corwin.

Meanwhile, David F, Lance, Melinda, Ruben, Scott Fisher, and Jason played Volle Wolle. This is a dice game played with an 8-, a 10- and a 12-sided die, and you have to bid a total, then roll to try to reach that total, taking cards if you make it. Fun game, with a cute little sheep shearing theme. Ruben won handily, with 54 points, followed by Scott (36), Dave (34), Jason (29), Melinda (26), and Lance (4). Lance played well, but was almost always contrarian in his bidding, and paid for it, sometimes painfully.

Next up was Tichu for Ruben & Rose vs. Noreen & Melinda. The R's took the game, 1025 to 775. No score sheet, so I am not sure of Tichu calls or slams...

Jason, Andrew, Scott Fisher, and I played Tikal. It was Jason's first time exploring the South American Wilderness. I made a crucial mistake just before the second scoring which let Jason into a pyramid where I could have placed more men. He was able to dig it down to 9 and cap it, and the points from this and his prior cap easily carried him to a crushing victory. He ended with 116 to Andrew's 94, Scott's 86, and my 79. Ouch!

Carly, Scott Fox, Martha, David B, and Rick played 6 Nimmt!, a good game for later in the evening when no one wants to think too hard. Fox returned from the dead to win (22) followed by David B (41), Martha (47), Carly (61) and Rick (85). When I came over, they had played 2 rounds and Carly was at 49 points already, well ahead of the pack, so it is impressive to see that she was able to turn the tables and not go over 66 first.

Last game of the night was Zooloretto, with Corwin, Judy, Bill S & Bill T. This is a nicely themed variation on the card game Coloretto. It's growing on me. Final scores in this round were, Bill T 32, Corwin 27, Judy 27 (Corwin had 3 coins to Judy's 2 to get the tiebreaker), and Bill S 19.

Thanks to everyone for coming out, I hope you had as much fun as I did. See you on the Tenth!

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