3 more from the Shelf

Tuesday night was full of gamers – 12 of them in all – about as big a turnout I’ve seen in months.  We broke into 3 different tables, 4 players per table.

I played New Orleans Big Band, at the intrigued request of one of the ladies.  The game was fun.  I didn’t really rate it highly, just giving it an ‘OK’, but we enjoyed playing together, and the theme was very enjoyable.  In game we are all promoters trying to put together a band.  We scour the French Quarter (of New Orleans) searching for musicians.  As you find them you put them behind your screen.  Unfortunately there are several event cards, which are rather capricious.  We willfully ignored the “lose a turn” effects, feeling they did nothing to promote the fun.  Nevertheless, one of the players got hammered by the event cards, while another waltzed through with no dire effects.  After the game, I threw away one of the cards, a musician Black Kathy, who basically loses the game for you if you get her.

So while we had fun, and the game played quickly there were the problems I mention above, and there was very little of the game actually on the board.  In truth, it could have been a cardgame.  So the game critic in me dinged the game, while at the same time I found myself enjoying the experience.

I then asked if folks would be willing to play Tonga Bonga, as I felt it was ideal for the tastes of one of the ladies playing.  After a bit of shuffling we found our foursome and proceeded to sail the isles of Tonga Bonga.  I find this game endearing for its lighthearted presentation.  But it really does offer a nice game for the gamer.  Do you post high wages to attract better movement dice?  Do you become miserly, to avoid spending too much money, and hope other players are forced to give you movement for free?  I tried a bit of both, and squeaked out a close victory.  At 45-60 minutes, I find this game delivers enough game in a brisk way to keep me engaged.

Finally, with a couple of people departing, we ended up with a table of 6 players, and an hour left.  I proposed Der Fliegende Teppich, or The Flying Carpet.  This proved brisk, fun and popular.

A nice night of gaming!


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