21 Participants, for a fairly smooth, albeit loud, Games Day. My apartment is simply too small for this. I must find a larger place for next Pesach. Sukkot we play on the roof, anyway, so the noise is not so bad.
Avri is a player from Beit Shemesh who came for the first time, bringing his brother Rafi. Rafi brought his brother-in-law Shlomo, and Shlomo brought his brother Meir. Or something like that.
Keren is a reader of my blog, and she came by for the first time with her friend Debbie. Except for Gili playing Settlers with them, I somehow neglected them while they were here, which I feel bad about. Come again, and I promise to play more with you personally.
Itamar brought his nephew Nadav, and Binyamin brought his kids Tikva Shira and Zvi Yehuda. Pinchas came on the last few Games Days too, and he is an old Bridge partner of mine.
The others are regulars.
24/7Tikva Shira+, Zvi Yehuda
I taught this to the kids; they kept forgetting the rule about rows not going past 24, and Z"Y never quite got the way you get points.
Amun-ReSaarya 43, David 36, Nadine 33
Nadine was ahead 2 points in the interim scoring, 15 to 13 to 13.
BridgeJon, Adam, Nadine, Ben
We played this simultaneous with our game of El Grande, while waiting for people to take their turns.
Binyamin, Adam, Tikva Shira, Zvi Yehuda
They played one hand of this at the end of the evening, waiting for the Amun-Re game to end, so that Binyamin could take the game home.
Carcassonne: the CityJon 130ish, Binyamin/Ben 85ish, Nadine 55ish
Binyamin taught us this version of Carcassonne. It has the usual three area types, but one third of the way through the game you begin placing walls and towers around the tiles.
The most significant difference is that only roads have to match, not areas. We found this to be a huge huge Bad Thing. Most of the tactics of Carcassonne derives either from merging with other areas, or from locking opponent's areas so that they can't close them. This rule significantly reduces both of these options, making the game simply a matter of picking the best tiles and putting them down in the best places each turn. Whoopee.
It is one of those situations where too many opportunities for scoring makes a significantly worse game, rather than a better game. There is not enough tension.
I got luckiest. Nadine made a few sub-optimal choices, according to Binyamin, and he got upset enough to leave the game early. Ben filled in for him for the last few rounds, without any understanding of the rules.
Pinchas loves Chess, and I play very infrequently, and totally tactically. I also get bored with games where it's clear that one person is winning, and the only way for them to lose is to make a dumb mistake.
So I enjoyed the game at the beginning where I managed to secure a lead over Pinchas by a Knight and a Pawn. Then I got bored, moved too quickly (I should mention, perhaps, that I don't like to take too long with my moves, and I was also simultaneously playing El Grande at the time), and went down to a single Pawn advantage.
In the end, I didn't feel like dragging the game out for another 50 moves, so I lost a few more pieces and resigned. It was a little rude of me. Sorry, Pinchas.
Keren and Debbie played a game of this later in the day.
Die MacherJon, Gili, Binyamin, Adam
This is one of our grails of gaming - simply getting it onto the table. That took most of the day.
The rule explanation then took another hour and some, as usual, and it was about three hours before we finished the first round. I was really hopeful we would finish the game, for once, because we were ll enjoying it, and the second round went much quicker and smoother. But Gili had to leave before the game would finish, so we only finished three rounds.
We all really enjoyed it, for what we played. There are a lot of rules that I have to keep digging up and remembering, but we all suffered the adverse effects of this, and managed to keep on forging forward, anyway.
El GrandeNadine 107, Adam 100, Ben 94, Binyamin 90, Jon 83
I made the mistake of having a slight early lead after round three, which made me a target. And this despite the fact that this is Nadine's signature game. And she won, of course, in the end.
Nobody was horribly behind the whole game.
GeschenktRafi 13, Avri, Saarya, Shlomo, Meir
I taught them this game as a brain cleanser between the games of Power Grid and Santiago. Rafi won it.
Lost CitiesKeren+, Debbie+
They played two games of this, while we were davening Mincha. I think I didn't explain the rules completely. I believe they were drawing and then playing, and opposed to the other way around.
NautilusBen, Nadine, David, Josh
These guys were looking for what to play and started with this. Binyamin warned them that it wasn't really their type of game, and he turned out to be correct, and they abandoned the game halfway through, not particularly enraptured.
They also complained about the sameness of the colors on the chips and other design elements.
Rather than try to find my Magic lands, I taught this to Binyamin. I first played the Corp, while Binyamin drew a number of expensive cards and couldn't quite get together a cohesive attack. I took home 5 agenda points without too much trouble, and we decided to switch sides.
We then played the fastest game of Netrunner ever played. Binyamin played his turn and didn't protect R&D. I raided R&D three times and pulled three agendas, totaling 8 agenda points. Game over.
Perhaps there is a tad more card luck in Netrunner than in Magic, after all.
Power GridSaarya 14, Avri 11+, Rafi 11-, Meir 10, Shlomo 6
Saarya taught them this, and naturally won, as the only experienced player. The others bought too many power plants. They played on the US without the NW, but no one even made it into the SW.
I should note that Shlomo's dismal score is not due to lack of plants, but probably being shut out of fuel.
Princes of FlorenceBen 58, Avri 57, Nadine 53, Josh 48, Tal 41
Tal would like it noted that she was leading at one point. Keren and Debbie also looked interested in trying this game.
As you can see, a close game, with Avri scoring well for his first time.
SantiagoAvri 76, Meir 55, Rafi 51, Saarya 45, Shlomo 37
I suggested this one to them, and they were all first time players. They seemed to enjoy it.
Settlers of CatanGili+, Keren, Debbie
I was going to play this with them, but Gili sat down before I got there. They all enjoyed it, even though Gili was the more experienced player and gave them a trouncing, it appears.
Pinchas likes Chess, so Adam taught his this Japanese game of Chess. Unfortunately, all the pieces were disks with Chinese writing on them; I have no idea how Pinchas could ever distinguish the pieces.
World of WarcraftItamar, Nadav, Tikva Shira, Zvi Yehuda
The award for the day's longest game goes to this, not Die Macher. They started playing at 12:30, and ended, without finishing the game, at around 9:00 or so. I have no idea what they accomplished during that time. The biggest problem was that none of them were native English speakers and the cards were all in English, so they had to keep running to Binyamin for explanations.
ZertzZvi Yehuda, Tikva Shira
Played at the end of the evening.