Looking Back, Looking Ahead
Scott, Jon and Michael joined Jacqui and I, and we opened up with Power Grid. It was Scott's first game, but everyone else had played. I suspect Power Grid may be the most widely played Euro around here. It hasn't "hit the table" at my house in the last few months, but I've played 5-10 times since moving. It's one of the few '10s'. [I still need to play the expansion maps more]. We played in the US.
The early game saw a pause, as the plant market clogged with inefficient plants early. Michael suffered the most, with three '1' plants. Jacqui had good plants, but was in the south-central area with more expensive cities. Scott was in the Northeast with myself ... he had better plants (the 15 that powers 3 cities for two coal, vs my 10, which only power two), but I was on the inside which gave me more expansion room. Methane and uranium prices plummeted, making more powerstations palatable. I got the 24 (two methane for 4 cities) and claimed all the open cities in the area, to trigger stage two. Jacqui won the 3 Garbage for Six cities (30) at a premium, but then power plant market flooded and everyone picked up a good plant relatively cheaply. Everyone had a nice cash reserve, so the second slots filled up in two turns. But with all the plants being bought, the final stage hit. Michael built to 14 cities cheaply (15 ends the game with five players), but was still behind the curve on powerplants. I had 15 capacity, but a few dollars short of 15 cities. I decided to claim 14 cities and risk a resource shortage on the final turn. Just to be safe, though, I didn't fire all of my plants.
In the last turn, the auction for the 50 (power six cities for free) went a bit, and everyone upgraded their plants a bit. My plant upgrade wasn't great (increasing my total from 15 to 16), but it was cheap and I only had to build two cities. Everyone else spent a bit more on plants and cities. Scott had the capacity for 17 cities, but could only get to 16, and I had an extra $10 to eke out the win. Considering how often I've played, and that was his first game, a very good showing.
Then it was time for Stage II. Scott was winning when he had to leave, and the final score barely edged his total (earned two cards earlier!). And the high score wasn't mine, so I have no problem declaring him the moral victor.
So, only two games, but ones I rate highly.
And now looking ahead for Monday, I'll be at DL after lunch. It sounds like people are going to be playing Vampire and other small-mid range games. But given that we could start at 1pm, is it time for something meatier? Sword of Rome again? 7 Ages? I also have Successors, Die Macher. I could go for shorter games, but if we've got the time and crowd...