July 22, 2009

Participants: Jon, Gili, Abraham, David K, Bill, Nadine

A lovely bunch of regulars.

San Juan

Abraham 24, Gili 22, Jon 22

First play for Abraham, though he has played Puerto Rico and Race for the Galaxy, so this wasn’t much of a stretch. Of course, he didn’t know the cards as well as we did.

That didn’t stop him from putting together an awesome synergy for trading: Market Post, Well, Trading Post, and so on, all working perfectly together. Gili followed with higher paying production buildings and Aqueduct, while I had only my lone Indigo Plant the entire game, going the Quarry and Carpenter route. Word to the wise: if your opponents are crafting and trading, you’re not going to make much money unless you can benefit from their role selections, too.

Still, I had good luck picking 6 point buildings. Abraham didn’t pick any, so he just built quickly to end the game as fast as possible while he was ahead. Gili got out a Guild Hall and I got out a City Hall, but it wasn’t quite enough.

R-Eco

David 17, Nadine 6, Bill 2

First play for Bill (or perhaps second). David likes this game a lot, which surprises me, as it doesn’t strike me as his type of game.

Stone Age

David 160ish, Abraham 150ish, Bill 110ish

Don’t have the exact scores, but something like that. David thought he made mistakes, so naturally he won anyway, though Abraham came close.

Caylus

Jon 124, Nadine 107, Gili 80ish

We searched around for a game that both Nadine and Gili liked, since they don’t like my favorite games. I’m less than enthused by Caylus, but don’t play games only if I hate them (like Fluxx). I find Caylus to be overly dry, overly long, and – strange as it may sound – not requiring too much thinking. It’s actually a pretty forgiving game if you keep your eye on the victory points. Or perhaps I just don’t care who wins, after five levels of converting money to workers to cubes to buildings to more building to yet more buildings.

Nadine took the first favor, I but I quickly jumped ahead in favors. I got to the end track in cubes, so that I could get the gold cubes I needed, and of course the end track in buildings, which is required to win. I also don’t neglect the gray buildings, whose point return is quite good, or the castle.

The provost doesn’t get much play in a three player game; I lost out on using one building on one turn, which I couldn’t really afford to use, anyway. We all seemed to have a lot of money most rounds.

And since we hadn’t played in a while, and the board is really poorly designed, Gili got confused by the rule of which level of the favor track you can use in which phase. I also reminded them about placing workers on your own building for only one coin, even after others have passed. Knowing the rules better gave me a slight but unfair advantage.

Dominion

Abraham 45, David 31, Nadine 20ish

The only card that trashed other cards was the Thief, and it trashed your opponent’s cards. David used Thief a few times only to realize that he was helping rather than hurting his opponents by trashing their coppers. Abraham drew a completely synergistic deck which drew itself in total on every turn.

David reached a buying power of 19 on one turn, which is the most I’ve ever seen.

Antike

Jon 12+, Bill 6

First play for Bill. A learning experience. I really really love this game, because, while conflict is an option, you don’t lose much if you lose a combat. The object is to gain points, not territory. And no dice rolls!

Bill was trailing on my Know-hows, and working at expansion, ignoring my immanent poise to strike. I then swooped in an sacked two of his temples, netting two destroyed temple points, one “five cities” point, and one “seven seas sailed” point in one turn. Since it was getting late, and I was now winning 12 to 6, I suggested he resign, which he did. But he liked the game.

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