Saturday, June 02, 2007

You can never have this...6/2 report

8:30 am gaming can be rough but 4 of us (Al, Ben, Jeff and myself) managed to get to Jeff's house around then. Not knowing when Rob would appear, we broke out a quick game of Nexus Ops. It was my first time and I would describe the game as a lightish "war" game that probably fills the same type of itch that other "war" games like risk and air baron fill but in like 1/3 the time. In my opinion that is a huge improvement as there is only so much I can take so I might pick this up to play with my friends in the future. Some bad early fortune for me was repaid with some fortunate card draws and at least average luck with the dice down the stretch to pull out a blitzkrieg victory with 6 vps (out of 12) coming over the final two turns.

Rob still was not there but we knew from a conversation with him that he would soon be so Ben, Jeff and I tried a quick game of Coloretto. We degenerated to mostly a care-bear style of play and with some help from lucky draws I pulled out yet another win (don't worry my comeuppance was yet to come and with a vengeance).

Rob had finally shown up but we were all starving so a quick trek over to taco c for lunch was our next mission. Having satiated all hunger requirements we returned to Jeff's to try our hand at one of Rob's latest acquisitions, Notre Dame.

Notre Dame (at the moment at least) appears to be to me what I wished Fairy Tale was: a game involving the draft mechanic in it that is not completely and totally inscrutable...all dragon hide grrr.... There are many facets that you want to work on at once and the trick is trying to balance everything to some degree. Like many games with a draft mechanic there is a strong incentive to be doing something different than the people to your right (who are feeding you cards), but some balance must be maintained(at least thats what it felt like with our first two plays).

In the first game, Rob and Al fed me plenty of park actions with the net result that most of my late game victory point grabbing actions were coming with a +3 vp bonus. We also had a scare with rats threatening to overrun us all at some point with two consecutive really bad rat draws but I think that was an anomaly. In the end I ran away with that one since the victory point bonus let me achieve an enormous score.

Having now seen the power of the park combined with the power of being the only one in that strategy, we tried again. This time parks were not as easy to come by and in fact I only ended up with 3 guys total in there (with My Buddy(TM) staying for a short time to boost it to 4 temporarily before heading to greener pastures). Jeff pursued a degenerate strategy of ignoring the rats completely and trying to tech up his victory point generator as soon as possible and it looked like it would win but some fortunate events regarding Notre Dame let me hold onto a second tighter victory (comeuppance coming, please don't worry). Having played it twice, I can safely say that with the insane amounts of interaction going on in the game, Simon will love this game (In case you didn't know I was being sarcastic).

Finally, it was time for my comeuppance. We played Citadels. Or rather I should say, Rob, Jeff, Ben and Al played Citadels. I pretended to play, but thanks to a rather amazing run with assassinations against me, ended up sitting in my cage with the 4 of them flaunting their turns at me "you can never have this, la la la la" they would say. It actually got amusing at some point, "who is assassinating me this turn?(an appropriate question always)"..."if you are trying to steal from Jeff you should clearly not steal from the King since Ben obviously has it since that is worst for me(unassailable logic). " Alas, I never got out of my cage and Rob ran away with it.

Comeuppance in hand, it was time to leave.

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11 Comments:

At 6:05 PM, June 02, 2007, Blogger Schifani said...

So you won 4 out of 5 multiplayer games? Clearly your definition of comeuppance is different than mine.

Steve, who knows ass-whuppins

PS Crusader Rex on the way, with votes for Athens-Sparta and Wars of the Roses

 
At 9:47 PM, June 02, 2007, Blogger Ben said...

Gret fun and laughs today!

Yes, here was the theme of the day for those who don't catch the reference:

http://tinyurl.com/2zg4eu

Since I've realized that Michael wins at least 50% of the games he plays, my new master strategy is to immediately focus on attacking him.

Hope to see you all on Monday. Now back to Fall from Heaven 2...

 
At 10:13 PM, June 02, 2007, Blogger Ted Kostek said...

Thread hijacking alert

Wars of the Roses looks like a great game. I love the way Jerry Taylor is able to incorporate a streamlined political element into his games.

Athens-Sparta looks interesting, but you should check out Hellenes (sp?) by Craig Besinique. The history here is that Craig designed both EastFront and Rommel in the Desert, two seminal block games that are among the highest rated wargames on BGG. Craig submitted his Pel. War game to CG, but ultimately the game landed at GMT. It would be a hard choice for me. Craig has a track-record of making amazing games, but CG makes faster playing games.

 
At 1:39 AM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Rob said...

Michael: Great post. It really was a fun gaming session, even if I got there late. I haven't laughed this hard playing games in a long time. I loved Notre Dame: seems to have all kinds of possible strategies..... none of which I could clearly execute since I ended in dead last on both games. On to BSW to see if I can improve my game.

Borat rules.

Ted: I was going to mentione Hellenes to Steve, seeing his post above. I will probably go with Hellenes (GMT games) because of Craig's track record. I love CG, but I feel the need to stick with Craig's.

 
At 5:30 AM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Ben said...

Notre Dame on BSW works pretty well. The only thing that's just a bit tough is remembering the symbology on specialists-for-hire, but I'm sure this will go away quickly. When in doubt, hire the stupid banker or the wench.

 
At 10:26 AM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Brian said...

So wait, Ben has a webpage on board games and doesn't link here? Or my page?

J'Accuse!

You won with parks in Notre Dame? Are you sure you were playing correctly?

 
At 11:10 AM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Ben said...

I think he had about six cubes in the park, which was giving him a +3 bump every time he collected VPs...

 
At 1:43 PM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Michael said...

It felt wrong but I think we were doing things the right way. For sure the last three rounds I was doing vp actions almost exclusively and only buying guys that gave me vp as well so just over that time period I got around 30 bonus vps alone during those rounds. Add in the fact that there were vps coming in a trickle during the first 2 rounds and there was the base vps on top of the bonus vps and it ended up being around 70 something as my final score.

Maybe the characters and notre dame aren't supposed to get boosted by the park bonus? That would have cost me at least 20 vps but Rob checked and we thought we had it right.

 
At 2:14 PM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Michael said...

Also, I just logged into BSW for the first time in about a year to possibly play a game of Notre Dame. All the rank stuff is completely gone. That degrades over time? I had no idea.

 
At 4:22 PM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Rob said...

Yep Brian, the rules clearly state that you get +1 vp ANYTIME you get VP's, and there are multiple examples including scoring Notre Dame, etc. It was our first game, and Al and I who fed cards to Michael, simply ignored what he was doing on his board ....as he built his 6 block park empire by the last 3 rounds of the game (I was focused on trying to make up for 2 consecutive rounds of rat screwage).

 
At 5:46 PM, June 03, 2007, Blogger Ben said...

BSW plays the parks the same way we did.

 

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