David wraps up his last visit to the JSGC and returns to America next Tuesday. Thanks for joining us!
GeschenktBinyamin 5, Ben 21, David 22, Zack 34, Jon "many"
First play for David and Ben. Binyamin had made me a mockup of this and I needed a filler game while waiting for the stragglers to come in. Still a nice quick game. I somehow lost control of my tokens and swallowed a lot of bad cards.
Blue Moon CityZack+, Binyamin, Jon, Nadine
First play for all of us. BMC is a board game based on the card game Blue Moon, which none of use had played, either.
There is some story about rebuilding a city and seven races with different abilities and so on, but essentially it is an area control game. You control areas by moving to them and playing the cards of the same color as the area. Simultaneously, you can use the cards for their special abilities, such as moving further, changing card colors, gaining "scales", and so on.
Each time you complete an area, all players who contributed to the area gain the value of the area plus a bonus for all areas completed nearby. First place in the area also collects a bonus.
Furthermore, any time you build you can get "scales" if a dragon is on your area. Whenever all the scales are collected, bonuses are given to the one with the most and all who have at least three. The scales are returned and you start collecting them again.
Eventually, you convert your collected points into cubes on the big tower, and the first to place four cubes on the big tower wins.
It is yet another one of those "get this to get that to get the third thing" games, ala Caylus, as well as having to match cards to claim areas ala Ticket to Ride or Alhambra.
The game is nicely progressive and interesting enough, and most importantly, quick enough. That's Knizia for you.
Undoubtedly there are some strategies to use in this game, such as which areas to go for first, whether to share in many areas or steal areas all to yourself, and whether to use up your cards early or try to save up. Most of us emptied our cards early.
I can't tell you after one playing why Zack won. All of us had three cubes on the tower when he got his fourth.
While waiting for my turn to come up in BMC, I taught Dylan how to play Dvonn and he beat me twice in a row.
Tigris and EuphratesGili 7, Adam 6, David 5, Ben/Jon 5
First play for David. Ben was very unhappy after losing a few conflicts he initiated, nor about lacking green and red tiles throughout the game. He also wasn't open-minded about varying his strategy. After BMC and Dvonn finished, I stepped in to his place. He had no green cubes and few cubes in other colors, and he had one treasure.
I through out all his tiles and picked up a green and red. Then I placed a monument for Green and Blue. I didn't worry about the Blue, letting someone else take it, since I was more concerned with boosting my own score. After two turns, I was already up to 4.
Unfortunately, people kept handing Gili 5 point conflict victories in various colors. And she had been losing until now, too. On my last turn, I made it to 5 points and I tried to end the game through a conflict by tossing out 4 tiles. Unfortunately again, I should have just tossed out all my tiles, as I was one tile short of ending the game, which let Gili have one more turn.
Either way, I wasn't going to win, but I did pretty well considering my starting position.
Lord of the Rings: the ConfrontationElijah+, Zack
Zack was fresh off of his victory in BMC, but he rarely wins this game against Elijah.
TichuZack/Elijah 335, Adam/Gili 265
They played three hands. Elijah and Zack took the lead in the first hand, and then the next two hands were 300 point swings either way.
Zack wanted to play, and Elijah fought to the bitter end.
ZendoJon, Dylan, Adam, David, Elijah, Zack
We played two games, one with me Master, and one with Dylan master. My rule was "All objects pointing different directions" which stymied them for a good number of round. Dylan eventually guessed it.
Dylan then stymied everyone else (I was off playing Bridge) and had to reveal the rule when I kicked everyone out for the evening. His rule was "A prime number of pips", which Adam cried foul, saying that even if he thought of that he would hev rejected it as too complicated.
We sure seem to be playing more and more Bridge. They taught Zack how to play, and then he went over to Zendo while I filled in for him.
Nadine and I had most of the hands, although nothing extravagant. I played 4 out of 5 of them.
The Menorah GameJon 46, Dylan 36
Dylan 52, Jon 40
I taught Dylan this. Unfortunately, he's not much into auction games.
I also taught (or re-taught) Dylan this. As he is a smart fellow, I simply gave him first move on a 9 by 9 board. The first game was rather close, but in the second he made a serious mistake which let me live on a large section of the board.
I almost never get to play this deceptively simple and under-appreciated game. I figured Dylan would be willing. We played while simultaneously playing Zendo.
I made a small mistake (are there any others in Checkers?) which prevented me from keeping parity with his jumps. Once ahead, he was able to corner me into resigning.