Game Night: Saturday 1-2-2000
Well, we played "Biting off Hedz" for the last time on New Year's
Lose a guy, do a Jell-O shot. Fun for a while, but like ALL cheapass games,
too long. What do they do during play testing, try to keep the game going
so they can do MORE testing? Geez, way too long. We quit and went to the
ultimate closer game, Liars dice. Lose all your dice, do a Jell-O shot.
The empty cups were everywhere. Michelle made everyone wear funny hats,
and Jacqueline fell on her lip. Although, Jacqueline was not drinking
because she's only 3. I can't say the same for Michelle. Her and I (and
Pete) stole all the good champagne, claiming we could tell the difference.
Yum. In the end, someone won. I think. Good party.
Saturday we tried to get an early start, but did not get a game of Gigaten
started until almost 10. (Hey, you can show up earlier you know). Ten
minutes later, Ed and John walk in and we decided not to start over. Oops.
Gigaten is a long game also. Not a bad game, kinda cool actually, but
again too long for our tastes. I can't take over 90 minutes. We
accelerated the ending and finished in 2 hours. Too long. Neal won, Tom
and I were 2nd and 3rd (very close). Phil ate the cheese.
Finally, we played Ed's new card game, "Corruption". A direct variation of
"Banana Republic" that everyone but me liked BETTER. I will try it again
and see. Needless to say, I did not win. I was last. I think John won,
despite me trying to screw him in the later turns. You bid on contracts by
bribing officials. There are special cards to screw up the biding, but
they can only be used by you once a game (as supposed to once a round in
republic). That and it was a slightly shorter game, must to Ed's pleasure.
Game Night: Saturday 1-15-2000
Where did the time go? Well, I started my last semester of school and
currently obsessed with getting my radio station internet ready, so my
missive schedule is a little off. But please, let me catch you up.
Really, I'm beggin' here.
Two weeks ago, Pete, Michelle, Tom, myself and Jen played a couple of game
classics. Medici was our first choice. Even though it was a close game
between Pete and I, I really sealed the deal in the first turn when I
filled my boat with the gold bullion (sp?) and two other commodities for a
total of 3 lucre. Pete did a good job of keeping up, but I finished with a
record 142 points. This game continues to be a game night staple.
For our second game, Pete asked to play his favorite, "Through the Desert"
aka "The Camel Game". I thought I was doing very well and ended up THIRD.
Pete won of course. The great think about this game is that it's no harder
than checkers. Fun for anyone over the age of 12. But don't eat the
vitamin looking pieces!
This week Neal and Laura were the sole attendees, so we again broke out
"Was Sticht?" aka "Who bit me?". This 4 player only card game rules! You
choose your goals, then you choose your cards, then you play them. Fun. I
did win, with Jen and Neal a close second. Nice social game. Next time, I
think I'll introduce them to "Twilight" and see what they think. If you
wonder, Twilight is the 4 player card game were there are 2 cults competing
for follower points. Laura still prefers Wizards because there is less
planning and more playing, but I like Was Sticht? much better because it is
more than just a trick taking game.
Next week, Ed and Alias Johnny are coming over for a game of Settlers of
Catan. For those of you who don't know, Settlers was the game that was so
good, it single handedly started the resurgence of parlor games. It is a
long type game (90-120 minutes), but flawless in its design.
After much discussion, I think it has been decided that Union Pacific is by
far better than Gigaten. I for one am amazed that Gigaten was #1 and Union
Pacific #2 in the game of the year voting.
At this point, Gigaten and Chinatown (a game we just never got the hang
of), two VERY highly rated games, are unofficially retired from play.
Game Night: Saturday 1-22-2000
Is "Settlers of Catan" the perfect game? Well it sure comes close. Granted it does clock in at 2 hours and there is a board to set up (5 minutes), but this is greatly offset by the numerous pluses.
In case you have not guessed, we finally broke out the classic Settlers last Saturday. Ed, Alias Johnny, Phil, Phil's cousin Dave and I settled in for a longer, but meatier game. We were not disappointed. Unlike the confusing Gigaten, the goal in settlers is clear. Get 12 victory points. Each Settlement is 1 point, each settlement upgraded to a city is two points. Longest Road and Largest army (token in all other respects) are 2 points respectively. There are also "buildings" that sometimes come along for a single point.
Strategic placement of settlements produce resources. Each turn, a player rolls two dice to begin. You see, each plot of land has a point value (2-12). If your settlement is part of that lot when that number is rolled, you get one of the 6 resources commodities. Even if it isn't your turn!
Settler's has it all, A bean like trading round on each players turn (anyone can trade with the player whose turn it is), the ability to build something at the end of ANY players turn, and easy to understand mechanics and goals (much like the old parker brothers classic, "Careers"). Because of this, the game never becomes boring or has "down time". Your always playing.
Sound perfect. Hmm. I must admit, I always had a problem with Settlers. I could usually tell who was going to win at about the half way point. Certain people ended up with good resource producing lots. This resulted in a superior stream of resources that would eventually overtake the others. And once they had it, you can't steal it from them. Lo and behold, the expansion "seafarers" fixes this by allowing board expansion. Now if you have the raw end of the land deal, head seaward young Columbus! It certainly helped me to victory.
Oh yes, we played Liar's Dice and Space Beans too. Never play Space Beans when your tired... You are always trying to figure out whose turn it is.
Until next week.
Game Night: Saturday 1-29-2000
After a excruciating long dinner selection process (my God that's a lotta
pizza), we started game night BEFORE the kids went to bed. AT 8:30, Neal,
Laura, Tim & Beth (related to the Mansons) and I played "Take 6" whilst
Jen "puttered" and kept a general eye on kid-dom. We learned very quickly
that they were used to game playing. Tim has a collection in his own
right, and Beth trounced us at Take 6. It was brutal. Neal and I ended the
game with a vengeance (I was over 80!) and Beth had about 2 points. ARGH!
Mensa game my ass.
Next was goodnight story time. This consisted of Ray reading a story to
Drew and Jacqueline, while the other parents mocked him. Thank goodness it
wasn't the "pooh" book with the songs in it.
After "quiet time" started, we decided to play wizards (and drink beer). I
START to explain the rules, when Tim says "We're familiar with Wizards".
Familiar?! Familiar? Beth trounced us. This time, I finished a
respectable, but distant 2nd.
A quick phone call from the Lemenses inspired our next game.
We decided to teach Tim & Beth game nights favorite, Medici. They picked
it up after 1 turn, and I assume they liked it because when the game was
over they wanted to play again. Laura, despite numerous moans that I had
to be stopped, won. I finished a distant third to Jen in second. Girl
game night!!! Tim tried a new strategy by bidding 40 in turn one for the
gold, Mike Ditka style. (Ditka traded ALL his draft picks for one player
in this years draft). With his new understanding, I think he would have
revised his bid to 25ish.
So, Neal and Laura left and we taught Tim and Beth Liar's Dice. STUPID
STUPID STUPID. Beth wins again.
This Saturday, Ed and Alias Johnny should be on hand. Should be a good
one. Get your tickets early. I hope he brings Settlers