December 22, 2010

Participants: Jon, Gili

Weird to only have one guest.

1955

Jon+, Gili

Gili requested this, since she only played half a game with Nadine last time. After an email or two with the designer I finally got the rules right: I had thought you could add multiple cards and also get the +1 bonus when playing in an area matching the card flags and also containing your spy. The correct rules – either a single bonus card OR a +1 – made blocking easier, and thus made the special abilities of the cards stronger. Gili likes the game.

After three games, I have yet to use most of the abilities, and some of them I find rather anemic. Scratch scratch. This may be a case of group-think. There’s something flat about the game. It’s nice and all, and it’s quick and playable, but it doesn’t seem to have a story arc. Maybe I just haven’t hit it, yet.

Schotten Totten

Gili+, Jon+

I taught this to Gili. Again, after downloading files from BGG, I finally played this with the correct rules: we completely screwed up the special cards the first two times I played.

We started with no special cards. We exhausted the deck, and the score was 4 Gili to 3 me. Gili’s final card play gave each of us a stone.

We played a second time using the special cards. Used correctly, they’re not as unbalancing as I had feared.

Race For The Galaxy

Jon 61, Gili 29

I previously thought that this was a good game marred by the ability for one person to ram through the game end, depriving most strategies of viability and the game of much of its fun. I know other games that suffer from the same problem.

When that doesn’t happen in this game, as it didn’t in ours, the game is quite interesting. I’ve never been very good at it. Which makes my blowout victory here a surprise.

I started with a first round 6 point development, the one that gives a -2 discount for all other developments. Add to that some military strength and my game strategy was essentially locked in. The rest was just fishing for cards.

Gili played something more diverse, but never got enough shipping strength to force through to the game end that way.

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