Friday, March 31, 2006

Wednesday night gaming

Thought I'd post a quick session report. Michael, Jon and I met at Patrick's for some gaming. The idea was to play Goa, since the game is going on ebay and I wanted to play at least once before selling it off, but I didn't feel like plowing through the rules and teaching a new game.

So, we started off with Patrick's new game "Heaven and Hell." Actually, I am not sure what the name of it is... I have to admit, I am not the game's biggest fan, but it's growing on me. I enjoyed it a little more this time around. Hopefully Patrick will be able to fine tune it enough that it's fun right out of the box.

Next, we played a game of For Sale. I think this may be my favorite filler. The game itself lasts about 15-20 minutes. It's basically two phases. First phase you bid openly on numbered cards. Second phase you bid blindly on dollar amounts, bidding with the cards you won in the first round. I think Jonathan won.

Next was Condotierre. I really enjoyed this game. Basically, you use a hand of 10 cards to battle for Italian cities. First person to win three connecting cities wins the game. Cards are not renewed until only one player has cards remaining. First there is hand management to think about. Then there is the strategy of knowing which battles to enter and which ones to pass on, saving your cards for future battles. There were times when you had to enter a battle even though it didn't help you, to prevent someone else from winning the city.

We played three games. I can't remember the winners -- I just know I was 0-3. I also know I made several serious strategic errors. Games were short but full of strategy. Plus, there was just enough player interaction (table talk is allowed) that even Patrick gave the game good marks. Patrick screwed me once by promising to play his winter card (which makes the value of all mercenary cards 1). I changed my strategy but then he didn't play the winter card and Jonathan won the city on his next turn and eventually the game. Very fun game...

I had to work the next day so I left, but the three stooges stayed behind to play some more games. One of them will have to post here to let me know what I missed out on...


At 11:54 AM, March 31, 2006, Blogger Jonathan W. said...

Condotierre was a good game in my books. The first game was won by myself, the second by Michael and the third by Patrick.

We stuck around to play a game of Arkham Horror, but unfortunatly I had to leave after a couple of turns so the game was called off.

All in all it was a good night, and I was glad that some other people showed up beyond Patrick and Myself this week.

At 1:33 PM, March 31, 2006, Blogger Kendahl said...

Everyone won one but me? Crap...

At 2:32 PM, March 31, 2006, Blogger Patrick said...

Yea, I'm definately a fan of Condotierre. I think I've come to the conclusion that the only good eurogame is a short one. Good mechanics is great, but it takes some interaction and theme to keep me interested for long. This game has nice interaction and its very fast.

Arkham Horror has some really nice components. I'm not sure if there is going to be any real strategy in it though. But I'd like to play a full game.

For Sale is only OK. Blind bidding is not a good auction mechanic. High Society is a much better filler.

Its too bad we didn't get Goa goin. Kendahl had a hard enough time explaining Condotierre to us though =) I pity someone trying to teach the three stooges a complicated euro.

At 1:33 AM, April 01, 2006, Blogger Michael said...

Condottierre was a nice game and I learned a few things about the complete and utter uselessness of good old Napoli. I also got to be a Jenova's Witness which was pretty great too.

I kept noticing Prisoner's Dilemma situations in that game. One person would be very close to winning and the other three would want someone to "take one for the team", but not themselves. The two best ways to win were to end up in a situation where someone with a weak hand was endplayed into stopping you, or being someone who merrily sits out while the other three duke it out to stop a leader. Patrick got me really, really good in a situation like that. He drained my entire hand completely using a Winter played by Jon and a bishop played by himself. It worked out ok for him because me, Jon and him pretty much completely emptied our hands on that battle and we refreshed soon thereafter. But it cost me control of the choices for the battle which gave him the game in the long run.

I'm cooling off alot about Arkham Horror. The game length is a big problem I think.

For Sale was interesting and fast which is always a good combination.

At 3:51 PM, April 01, 2006, Blogger Simon said...

Having played For Sale four times now, I think I like it a bit better than High Society. HS is more of a "one rule" game, where all the fun comes from avoiding spending the most while acquiring the best. For Sale has a little bit more depth in decisions I think. Plus I hate how a game of HS can suck if the auction block comes up in a weird order.

I still like them both and plan on picking up HS at some point, but For Sale is the more favored of mine at the moment.

At 2:48 PM, April 02, 2006, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

I'm glad to hear from Kendahl. I haven't seen you since New Years.

Condotierre sounds pretty neat.

Short games with high interaction are great to have. Easy to teach, quick to play. Want more? Play again.

While I'm not opposed to interaction, I like a lot of games that don't have it, like war games.


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