Saturday, October 27, 2007

Middletown 10/26/07

Fourteen gamers in attendance:

  • Calvin Fisher
  • Carly Fisher
  • Scott Fisher
  • Steve Meyers
  • Noah Meyers
  • Katherine McCorry
  • Tom McCorry
  • Ben
  • David Fair
  • Noreen Fair
  • Jason Cheng
  • Marshall Miller
  • Phil Kramer
  • John Weber
Games played?

The evening started with Ben, Noah, Calvin, and Scott playing The Nacho Incident, a funny take on smuggling Mexican food into Canadia (Yes, Canadia). Scott won, followed by Calvin, Noah, and Ben.

Followed this up with a big game of Verflixxt! (That's Life!) with the following scores: Katherine 24, Calvin 19, Ben 5, Carly 1, Noah -1, Scott -17.

Pulled out the new Essen release, Wabash Cannonball, and David, Jason, Katherine, and Noreen played. An interesting game that plays quite quickly. Very enjoyable. David won with $108, followed by Jason $67, Katherine $64, and Noreen $64.

Cuba will be the "Hot New Essen Game" at EuroQuest, and Tom, John, Marshall, Steve, and Phil played. John managed the win with 84 points, followed by Tom with 80, Marshall with 73, Phil with 72, and Steve with 71. No word on what the game is like or how to play, so you may have to come to EQ to try it out!

Scott taught another new Essen release, League of Six, to Dave, Marshall, and Jason. The end game bonuses proved to be key for Scott as he won with 84 points, followed by David with 71, Jason with 69, and Marshall with 60.

Ming Dynasty is another new Essen release.
In the middle of the 14th Century the Chinese people succeeded to free themselves from the rule of the Mongols. With the accession to the throne of emperor Tai-Tsu they developed a rising country: China. Each player takes the role of an imperial prince and tries to gain influence with his family members at the growth of the Chinese people during the Ming dynasty. Place your fellow men securely into the 6 Chinese provinces, which are divided each into 3 prefectures. In order where your own family members get majorities into the administration you will be recompensed during the election rounds with gifts from the emperor.
The game was won by Phil 140, followed by Tom 133, Katherine 112, and John 94.

Oregon plays similarly to the older title, Hacienda, but is praised for having a more elegant and intuitive scoring, as well as more things going on in the actual gameplay. Three players joined together to tame the new western frontier, Jason scored 77, followed by Scott with 70, and Marshall with 68.

See you next week at GCOM-Damascus!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Brunswick 10/20/07

Since I'm a bad blogger and missed writing the last session report, you'll get two fro the price of one this time.

From last month we got together on 9/15/2007 - with just four players, Karl Musser, Brian Carpenter, Lije Bailey, and newcomer Charles Fout. Charles and I started off with a quick game of Kahuna. Once Brian and Lije arrived we decided to take our turns being pirates with Plunder and afterwards we closed out with a game of 6 Nimmt!

This past Saturday we met again with the same four plus Samantha Francis and my friend Raul who was in town from Columbus for a weekend. Most of the day was taken us with a game of Vinci. I was doing well until the mid-game when my civilizations got wiped off the board. Lije dominated the rest of the game and took the victory despite a late charge from Raul who got to within 2 victory points at the end. Charles had to leave, but we had a late arrival in Tim O'Genshain who joined us for another game of 6 Nimmt! - this one Brian walked away with.

Our next session is 11/17/2007.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Damascus 10/19/07

It was a warm evening, and we had 23 gamers on hand:

  • Dan Barnett
  • Rose Byington
  • Jason Cheng
  • Luke Conte
  • Brandy Cunningham
  • David, Noreen, Corwin & Andrew
  • Philippe Hebert
  • Bob, Carol, Rachel & Ben Jones
  • Raphael Lehrer
  • Marshall Miller
  • Rick Pasquale
  • David Raley
  • Lance Slifka
  • Bryan Snyder
  • Jennifer, Justin, & Seth Weinstein
The (un-numbered) slips got completely out of order this morning when I dropped them on the way to the car, so this is in an order determined by entropy alone... Games we played:

There were 3 separate playings of Zombie Fluxx, the newest member of the Fluxx Family from Looney Labs. In one of them Bryan won while playing with Dan, David R., and Lance. In another, Philippe won while playing with Lance, Dan, and Bryan. In the final, Luke won while playing with Brandy and Marshall.

Zooloretto (with a mess of expansions) was also played, and Dan managed to grab top honors with a score of 27 to David R.'s 23, Lance's 22, and Bryan's 15.

In Blue Moon City (played with expansions), David R. Managed to win by contributing the most to the obelisks completion, followed closely by Brandy, and then Marshall.

Kingdoms involves placing castles to take advantage of scoring opportunities, and Bob got hammered in the first round of play, but recovered to some degree. Bill won (it was his first time playing) with 279, followed by Noreen (also her first time playing) with 214, Bob with 207, and Carol with 196.

Princes of Florence is a tense game of optimization and producing works. Carol produced 6 works, and had a Prestige card giving an easy path to a hard-fought victory with 61 points. carol was followed by Bob (57, also 6 works), Noreen (52), Bill (51) and Jennifer (first time playing, 27 points).

Brandy, Bob, and Marshall played the great 3-player game, San Marco. Brandy appears to have led the whole game, with Marshall passing Bob only on the final scoring. Brandy won with 66 to Marshall's 53 and Bob's 50.

David F, Corwin, David R., and Jason played Ingenious (AKA Einfach Genial), and it was the first time playing for the latter two. David R. ended with 9, Jason with 13, Corwin with 15, and David F. ended the game early by scoring all 18's. Corwin, had he another turn, could have matched the feat.

A fast-playing 6-player game of Power Grid on the Benelux map was called for, and Raphael managed things carefully to end the game quickly and decisively by building to 14. player order was as follows (Cities, Capacity, Money): Raphael (14/15/15), Philippe (11/15/17), David F. (10/16/3), Jason (9/15/13), Rick (9/17/7), Rose (8/16/18).

Building the cathedral in Kingsbridge is the theme for Pillars of the Earth, and 4 players set out to do that, garnering fame and wealth for themselves in the process. Luke had never played before, and it had been some time for Bryan and Rick as well. David F. got some early metal, but got shut out of the first two metal workers. It was looking grim. Luckily, he managed to grab the second two metal workers, and snatch a metal out from under Rick, to score 28 points on the last turn to grab victory, scoring 62 points to Rick's 52, Luke's 39, and Bryan's 37.

In For Sale, players work in two separate auction rounds to get profit in a volatile real estate market. Rick showed he had the chops, winning 73 to Bryan's 57, Luke's 56 and Dave's 55.

There were 2 games of Igel Argern, and in the first, Bill won while playing with Noreen and Jennifer, and in the second, David F. won over Carol, Luke, and Raphael.

Two games of Tichu were played, Jason & Bill vs. Noreen & Rose, with Noreen and the Rose winning both, though i have no score sheets to confirm that, Hmmmmm.....

In Dragonland, Carol and Raphael managed to end the game a bit early as David and Luke were caught unprepared, leading to dismal scores for at least one of them... Carol won with 42 points, followed by Raphael with 39, Luke with 27, and David F. with 24.

Finally, Das Zepter Von Zavandor hit the table again, this time had Raphael winning 67 to Philippe's 52, Rose's 49 and Jason's 46. It was a first play for both Rose and Jason, and they seemed to do very well in a game that has a significant learning curve.

Next week we are at Fisher's, and will get to paw hungrily over his stack of Essen acquisitions, join us there!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Germantown 10/15/07

Another good crowd gathered for some gaming on a Monday evening.

  • Leslie Barkley
  • Kevin Bealer
  • Shannon and Aubrey Bell
  • David and Martha Briggs
  • Rose Byington
  • Doug Hoylman
  • Bob and Ben Jones
  • Helen Powell
  • Eric Reinhold
  • Howard Wagner
(Images below from Boardgamegeek)

First up, Billabong, the game of racing kangaroos! Yes, racing kangaroos. I proved the most adept at maneuvering bouncing marsupials and was first to get my five kangaroos across the finish line. Following me were Eric 4, Rose 3, and Doug with 1. I won even though I wasn't yellow, which is a rather grand achievement I think.

Rose left for home so next up was a quick three-player game of Circus Flohcati (Flea Circus) with Eric, Bob and Doug. Doug completely routed us, finishing the game early by presenting a Gala Show. Final scores were Doug 84, Bob 58, and Eric 54. This is a very fun, quick, push-your-luck game that can be played on a very small surface area.

As a rather large group arrived at the same time, we got them playing Poison. Howard, the leader going in with only 8 points, had a terrible last round which cost him the game and gave it to Martha and Aubrey. Final scores were Aubrey 11, Martha 11, Shannon 17, Leslie 17, Howard 24, and David 31.

We then split into two groups. I taught Reiner Knizia's Rheinlander to Martha, David, Shannon and Aubrey. It was a somewhat conflict-free game, with only a few Duchy-fights. Still, the few fights that occurred were crucial. Some last minute merging of opponent's Duchies hurt both Aubrey and Martha, giving me the game with 35 points to Martha 34, Aubrey 31, Shannon 26, and David 21.

Around that time, Kevin and Ben arrived and played a game of Travel Blokus, coming to a hard-fought tie!

Meanwhile, Doug taught Anno 1503 to Howard, Eric and Leslie. Final scores were Doug 3, Eric 2, Leslie 2, and Howard 1.

While the above games were still on, Helen arrived and taught Transamerica to Kevin. They didn't finish as Helen stopped the game when Rheinlander was nearing conclusion.

After Anno 1503 finished, Leslie, Howard and Doug played Qwirkle. Doug won with 160 points to 140 points for Leslie and Howard.

The rest of us broke into two groups for the final games of the night. Ben and I taught Martha and David Cartagena, the game of pirates fleeing prison. This was a remarkably quick game with some pirates making it onto the boat during the second round! I've never seen a group of pirates move so quickly. Ben dominated and finished first. Final scores were Ben 6, Bob 5, Martha 4, and David 3.

The other group played
On the Underground. Despite valiant efforts, they weren't able to finish before closing time. Aubrey was ahead when they had to call the game. Scores at the time were Aubrey 33, Helen 27, Kevin 26 and Shannon 22.

We have two consecutive Mondays coming up. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Damascus 10/12/07

We seem to have lost our records, so the following is being recreated from the memories of people who responded via email to a request for a summary of games played. We do have a list of who was there, and we had 24 in attendance:

  • David & Martha Briggs
  • Rose Byington
  • Ruben Carbonell
  • Jason Cheng
  • David, Noreen and Corwin Fair
  • Philippe Hebert
  • Bob, Carol, Rachel and Ben Jones
  • Raphale Lehrer
  • Marshall Miller
  • Linda and Rick Pasquale
  • David Raley
  • Tim Rothenhoefer
  • Lance Slifka
  • Bryan Snyder
  • John Stup
  • Bill Trac
  • Howard & Nathan Wagner
Games played, and in no particular order...

Tichu: 3 games: Ruben & Rose lost back-to-back games (1090 to 710 & 1025 to 875) against Bill & Noreen, while David F. and Jason squeaked one out against David R. and Tim (1025 to 975)

Can't Stop: John, Rick, Linda and Noreen played, with Linda winning.

6 Nimmt!
: Rick, Linda, Martha, David B., Carol, and Bob played, with Bob winning by a considerable margin.

Cave Troll: Ruben, Rose, Bill, and Noreen played, with Bill edging our rose for the win.

Corruption: Rick, Linda, Marshall, Martha, David B., Carol, and Bob playing, with Marshall staging a come-from-behind win.

Democrazy: Rick, Linda, Marshall, Martha, David B., Carol, and Bob again, this time with a victory for Martha.

Diamant: John, Rick, Linda, Martha, David B., and Noreen playing, with John winning, and Noreen not recovering a single gem.

Fresh Fish: Raphael, Howard, Nathan, and Bryan playing, with Howard edging out Raphael for the win on the tiebreaker (money)

Loco!: Raphael and Carol tied for the win over Bob, who didn't.

Railroad Tycoon: This one is in my journal, so was not lost, and has a fuller write-up... Nathan, Howard, David R, and Jason had never played before, while Bryan and I had. there was little battle over the first player early on, and everyone had a fairly standard opening and beginning. David F. made the first 3-link delivery, giving him the lead at that point, a position he kept for the rest of the game. Bryan and Nathan battled in the Midwest, though Bryan controlled all the links from Chicago. Jason was in the NE, with David F coming up the Midatlantic and eventually stretching from New Orleans to Baltimore. David R and Howard both occupied the South, battling over key connections for much of the game. In the end, despite moving back almost 3 times as much due to shares issued, David was able to hang on and win. Final scores: David F. 62, Nathan 57, Bryan 46, Jason 42, David R. 37, Howard 33.

Rat Hot: Raphael played with John and won, 16 to 9.

The Scepter of The Zavandor: Philippe and Lance played for the first time, with Tim and Raphael. Tim won by a large margin, and the battle for second was quite close, with Raphael managing just one point over Lance, who was a few points ahead of Philippe.

Senator: Rose won the game on a tiebreaker over Bob, Carol, and Ruben. Bill was the odd man out, being the only player not tied for first. Ouch!

Through the Desert: Raphael, Howard, and Nathan played, with Raphael winning, and Nathan taking second. This is a great 3-player game... I need to play it next!

See you next week!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Damascus 10/05/07

A smaller group of just 18 gamers... the same size group that was so large we had to abandon our townhouse for our new home at the rec Center, but not what we are used to now...

In Attendance:

  • David, Noreen, Corwin, and Andrew Fair
  • Jason Cheng
  • Rose Byington
  • Judy & Kayla Trent, with Scott Fox
  • Kevi Bealer
  • Bill Trac
  • Marshall Miller
  • Ruben Carbonell
  • David & Martha Briggs
  • Tim Rothenhoefer
  • Howard Wagner
  • Rick Pasquale
Dave, Jason, Andrew, and Corwin started with a too-long game of Can't Stop, won by Jason.

Rose, Dave and Jason played the excellent 3-player area-majority game, San Marco. Dave did very poorly at the outset, and watched Rose and Jason trade the lead back and forth until the end, when Jason prevailed slightly over Rose, while he remained far behind.

Martha, David, Scott & Judy played Settlers of Catan, with Martha winning with 11 points, followed by David & Judy with 5 each, and Scott with 4.

Jason, Dave, Rick and Tim played Expedition, setting off for travels around the world. Jason won handily with 13 points, followed by Tim with 7, and Rick and Dave with 5 each.

Rose & Noreen played Pickomino, Noreen winning 14 to 4, and Marshall joined for a second game, with Noreen again winning, 8 to 6 to 5 for the newcomer, Marshall.

Ruben, Bill, Kevin, and Howard played Masons, and while scores were not recorded, it was noted that bill had a 30-point lead at the end, winning over Ruben, Howard, and Kevin (in that order).

Dave, Jason and Rick played a fast game of Coloretto, with Jason winning 35 to Rick's 33 and Dave's 27.

Marshall, Ruben, Andrew, Bill, and Kevin played Last Night on Earth, but did not turn in a slip, so no idea who prevailed, the heroes, or the undead...

Next was 6 Nimmt!, with Jason winning with 28 points, followed by Judy (38), Dave (54) Martha (60), Rick (71), David (72) and Scott (86). Ouch! those are some painfully high scores.

Dave, Howard, Jason, and Marshall played Age of Steam on the Great Lakes Map, AKA the Rust Belt map. It was a very good game, and both Jason's and Howard's first time to play. Marshall followed a conservative shares strategy, while David was his normal aggressive self. Toward the end, Marshall had few cubes to move for significant income, and Howard and Jason were fighting over the same cubes. Dave had 4 6-link deliveries all to himself, and this proved enough to give him the win, with 85 points to Howard's 59, Jason's 54, and Marshall's 53.

Finally, there were 2 games of Tichu, both pitting Tim & Noreen against Bill & Rose, Age and experience trumped youth and enthusiasm both times, with Tim and Noreen winning 1005 to 895 and 1085 to 615.

See you next week!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Germantown 10/01/07

The first session in October saw a much smaller group than usual. Still, a lively group of ten gamers made for a fun evening. Attending were:

  • Leslie Barkley
  • David Briggs
  • Martha Briggs
  • Rose Byington
  • Luke Conte
  • Dave Fair
  • Bob Jones
  • Helen Powell
  • Eric Reinhold
  • Laura Reinhold

Before I arrived, Eric, Laura, Luke and Rose played the Rack-O-esque game of travel arrangements, 10 Days in Asia. Rose is credited with the win.

I arrived around 7PM and found David and Martha Briggs with Eric and Laura setting up for the immensely popular Zooloretto with all the expansions. When I checked in with them later, Eric had filled almost every spot in his zoo and by the end of the game he had actually completed the entire zoo plus the camel enclosure. A notable achievement. Final scores were Eric 30, David 28, Martha 21 and Laura 19.

Meanwhile, I joined Dave Fair, Rose, Leslie and Luke for the building and expansion game, Phoenicia. Only Dave had played before so we started out very slowly. One cool thing about the game is that it naturally accelerates, so the final playing time was shorter than we had expected. Midway through the game, I had a significant lead in income while Luke had a big lead in victory points. On the penultimate round, Luke had positioned himself to cross the 32 point trigger that signals the final round with me a few spaces behind and everyone else trailing. As expected, Luke was able to generate sufficient points on his next turn to reach 32 and trigger the final round. Unfortunately for him, he didn't count on me getting the City Walls and then having enough cash and workers to add to my Improved Hunting, giving me enough points to pass him. Final scores were Bob 34, Luke 32, Dave 28, Rose 28, Leslie 17. I should also note that Rose had a slow start but made quite a comeback. (The above image from BGG here).

After Zooloretto finished, Laura left but Helen arrived. So Eric taught the group Diamant with the Incan Idols expansion. David proved the master of the mines with final scores of David 51, Eric 31, Martha 29 and Helen 22.

At that point, Eric left so Helen taught David and Martha the number one BBG-ranked game, Puerto Rico. There wasn't enough time to finish, but they did get through quite a few turns.

Once Phoenicia was done, we had about an hour left so we pulled out Reiner Knizia's agonizing bidding game, High Society. No one did particularly well. Leslie got the 6 and 5 tiles but then took the 1/2 tile, effectively eliminating her. I took the -5 tile and the Thief early and so had to come back from a deficit. Going into the last round, the 8 was on the table. Anyone who took it had the best chance of winning, provided they didn't spend the most money. Rose took it, but had indeed spent more than anyone else and so was immediately out of contention. Of the three of us that tied with 10, Luke had the most money remaining and won. Final scores (with remaining cash on hand) were Luke 10 ($50), Dave 10 ($31), Bob 10 ($25), Leslie 5 ($37), and Rose (eliminated for having the least cash, $7).

Finally, we got in a quick game of No Thanks. Leslie managed to get a run of cards from 21 to 24 which saved her from lots of pain and gave her a good amount of coins. The rest of us were not so lucky. Final scores were Leslie 43, Luke 47, Bob 55, and Dave 57.