Archive for January, 2015

Happy New Year!

January 15, 2015

Time for a report on what I have been playing:

Thunder Alley – I gave Rick this game as a Christmas present.  The Monday night boys often like to do racing series, and this seemed like a good gift.  We have played twice.  One game to shake out the system, and the second to begin a linked series of 4 races.  We’re enjoying it, and I look forward to seeing how the linked series plays out.

Princes of Florence – What a great game!  Oh the design is great, but this particular playing was tremendous.  It was played on Tuesday night, and I was at the other table teaching another game.  I told Zack, Amy and John to pick any game they wanted, and I would join in after I was done teaching at the other table.  They selected PoF, and Zack taught the game.  Zack was building a good sized lead, but going into the final turn he had left himself with only 100 florins.  So he was going to have to surrender a point just to make an opening bid.  Zack really wanted a park.  John and Amy passed.  But I noticed a few things.

  1. Zack could not fit any other landscape tile on his mat.
  2. I had a Prestige card that would give me 7 points if I had the most landscape tiles.
  3. If I denied Zack this tile, I would score my Prestige card.
  4. I had 1200 florins, and could bid with impunity, whicle Zack had to surrender points for each bid he made.

The explosion from Zack was quite rewarding.  I finally relented and let him take the tile when the bid got to 1000 florins.  But the damage was done, I had cost Zack 8 points.  After the dust settled, I eked out a victory, by just 3 points over Amy, and about 8 points over Zack.

Roll for the Galaxy – This was a gift from Jay Tummelson.  I have never played the precursor game, Race for the Galaxy, very much.  So I am unable to compare and contrast the two games.  But Roll for the Galaxy has been fun the two times I have played it.  It is very much a solitaire sort of game.  But that doesn’t bug me.  I look forward to more plays.

Whacky Wit – Still playing it.  Still adorable.

Bandu – Played this at Alex’s New year’s Day game party.  Michael did a great job of stacking, and defied the odds to win.

Frischfleisch – A game about cannibalism.  Not as gruesome as the theme and cover would lead you to believe.  But still, a bit twisted.  Basically you have a team of 6 people stuck in the desert.  there is not enough food to go around, so you try to eat the other teams around you, or find enough food that is present in the desert.  If neither of those options work, you have to eat one of your team members.  The game didn’t really work all that well.  But I had fun seeing it.

Manila – Nice game.  I hadn’t played in years.  It reconfirmed my old assessment.  A game I might enjoy once in a while, but I don’t need to own it, as I don’t care enough to want to devote the shelf space to it.

Rallyman – Alex and I did a single heat of racing.  I quite like this system.  I’d love to play more of this.

Mahjong – I like the tactile element to this game, which is otherwise just a simple rummy variant.  I also like that this game inspires some people I know to play a game, when they would otherwise demur from gaming.

Duckomenta Art – This is an inspired version of “Master’s Gallery”.  Duckomenta is a German thing.  Apparently they have a special society that has a wild mythos about ducks.  They have made “duck-versions” of 95 famous paintings.  These paintings are the playing cards of the game.  The artwork really makes this game.  And the game itself is fun.  The game is a cardgame version of the boardgame known as “Modern Art”.  Modern Art is a game all about auctions, so it is odd that the card game version has no auctions.  Instead it is an exploration of the scoring system from the board game.  it works well, and seeing all the duck paintings is fun.  I gave a copy of this to Rick, who has always identified with ducks.  Rick was so taken with it, that he visited the Duckomenta site during his trip to Germany.  He also bought two duck paintings (canvas prints) and framed them, displaying them on his living room wall.  After playing the game a few times at Rick’s house, I decided I needed a copy of the game for my own collection.

Medieval Merchant – This is comfort food for my inner gamer.

Hol’s der Geier – aka Raj or Beat the Buzzard.  So simple.  Yet fun.  I recognize the central game mechanism, it has been used in more involved games.  Here it is the whole game, and it works well.  For a 10 minute game it works well.

Concordia – The latest Mac Gerts game.  (I think.)  Anyways, a game I played for the second time, but 20 months after the first play.  I could play more of this.  Almost good enough to buy!

Snowdonia – Played this 3-player with Rick and Chris.  I think this worked better than with more players.  Rick was enthused, so I think we may be playing a bit more of this.  I left it at Rick’s house so it would be handy for future gaming.

Palastgefluester – A little Adlung cardgame that Kendahl taught.  I liked it.  The player aid card was too small, so I had to peer to see what each card did frequently.  But worthy, I’d play again.

Euphrat & Tigris – Kendahl expressed a desire to play this.  I was pleased to see it back in action.  I even navigated my way to a victory!

Black Fleet – Alex brought this over.  Handsome game.  The production qualities are top notch.  The game itself is nicely streamlined.  it is a “screw-your-buddy” sort of game.  But it plays quick enough that I would be happy to play again.

Qyshinsu – An abstract game that Zack brought over.  Reminded me of a GIPF sort of game.  Probably a decent game, but not a game I am wanting to apply myself to.