Jon 54 Israel 53, Nadine F 51, Haim 39, Eliezer 31
Eliezer 58, Israel 51, Nadine F 50, Jon 46, Michael 38, Haim 28
Jon 54 Israel 53, Nadine F 51, Haim 39, Eliezer 31
Eliezer 58, Israel 51, Nadine F 50, Jon 46, Michael 38, Haim 28
Azul x 2
Yael 50, Nadine 43, Gili 42
I had played part of a game, new to the rest. We played two things wrong which pretty much canceled each other out – we only counted the last negative score instead of adding them up, but we had more negative tiles than we should have because we only allowed one row per pattern. Yael spent a long time thinking each round, which paid off. The tiles and components are really attractive.
Lorenzo 65, Jon 63, Sara 44, Haim 43
They played correctly, first play for all except Jon.
Age of Industry
Haim 29, Lorenzo 26, Sara 26, Jon 25
New to all except Jon who is always happy to play this, they seemed to like it.
Nadine 65, Nadine F 59, Gili 53, Yael 48
First play for Nadine S, I haven’t played in years. I focused on resources most of the game, which gained me money from neighboring players, and let me buy good cards on the last round. We all completed our monuments. Gili played military and some green, Nadine S got like 48 points in green but it wasn’t quite enough.
Sara/Jon Haim Nadine Lorenzo
Jon was playing with Sara to teach her the game. We ended the night before finishing the Tichu game, we were close in score.
Participants: Jon, Gili, Nadine, David K, Nati, Yael, Avi, Tal, Nimrod, Eitan
Tal and Nimrod are first time attendees. Avi and Nati came back for their second visit.
Jon+, David, Nadine
I took an early large number that helped me avoid most other cards for the rest of the game. David tried for one too many inside straights.
David 48, Jon 46, Nadine 41
We played this in two parts, stopping to play 7 Wonders between rounds 3 and 4. I suggested this since I hadn’t played in a while. I’m not a fan of the hidden win conditions aspect. But mostly, David kept taking exactly the dice I needed, sometimes – apparently – by accident. For example, I needed a white 3, and he had an extra influence point he needed to spend (to make room for more he was about to get) so he re-rolled the die and got a 6. 6 is better than 3, unless you need that number exactly for adding a cube to the 3rd column in the castle.
I also forgot about a few of the rules before play, and so missed a few opportunities for better plays.
Gili, Yael, Nati, Avi
First play of this co-op by everyone. They lost. Gili said it was somewhat frustrating.
Gili 36, Yael 35, Nati 25, Avi 23
They included the expansion cards. First play for some of them.
These guys came late, and someone was supposed to come (turned out that he had already come and I hadn’t noticed). I taught them this filler and they played until my roommate Eitan showed up and convinced one of them to play Chess.
I didn’t see how this went.
Tal 66, Jon, David, Nadine, Nimrod
I taught this to Tal and Nimrod. Tal ended at least 10 points ahead of anyone else, which was amazing. Nadine and I did science. Tal had a complete military set, and I started out with some too, but David on my right built more than I did. In the end he misplayed and lost the last military battle to mine. I had a smattering of other things as well. Nimrod’s points were all in blue cards.
Participants: Jon, David, Nadine, Nisan, Yael, Roman, Avi, Yedidya, Francis
Yael is the only one of the new players who showed up again, although a few said they would come. Avi brought his friend Yedidya again.
Yael+, David, Jon, Avi, Yedidya
I left my scores at home (where I am currently not). First play for everyone except for me, which surprised me. Everyone liked it.
My monument was military, and I ended up playing military which I usually don’t, since competition by a neighbor can make your investment in the cards useless. I ended with military and blue cards. Yedidya had the science monument, but didn’t build any science. He also had some blue cards. He also was discovered to have accidentally built the same blue card twice (which would have been mine); he had to discard it for 3 coins.
Yael had the “play one discarded card for free” monument, which netted her 6 points at the end of the game. She also had strong military and science. David had the “build one card each phase for free” monument, which he used in phases 2 and 3. He had nice purple cards and 3 matching science cards. Avi had the “free resource” monument, and also had strong science, but he had -6 in military score.
Roman 39, Nadine 38, Francis 36, Nisan 36
Nadine writes: First play for Francis. Everyone enjoyed the game. Roman went first with an income-centric strategy and the rest of us used a mix-and-match.
Nisan would have won and I would have done better if I hadn’t mistakenly paid 18 for the High Rollers room. I didn’t notice that I didn’t have the prerequisite required to place it, while Nisan did. I never got the prerequisite so I never place the HR room. We redrew one card combination, where two cards [gave contradictory changes to income and we couldn’t decide how to resolve them]. Francis was the only one who completed all three [bonuses for hotel, casino, and connection], but it wasn’t enough to overcome my big victory point buildings or Roman’s most income and diamond bonuses. Nisan didn’t get any completion bonuses. I accelerated the game end when I had the chance to choose a stack.
Avi 54, Jon 53, Nadine 52
I suffered from not buying the gold mine, that each of them both bought. I bought a copper mine a round or two later, but it’s really not as useful, since you need two trade chips to use it for anything else. Everyone was shy trade chips.
I had the most buildings, but Avi got the one that gave 1 point per building. At the end, we thought Nadine had won with 55 points, and then we remembered her 3 points in debt, which took her from first to last by a point either way.
David, Jon, Yedidya, Yael
Avi, Nadine, Jon
We played a few games each. In the first set, David and I both pulled off winning piles. In the second set, all three of us won one game each.
Lord of Waterdeep
David 153, Roman 151, Nisan 130, Yedidya 89
David writes: Nisan and Roman were both badly hurt by Yedidya, who used his first place position to take the first place position as his first move each round, [which essentially made David who played after him the first place player for the entire game, and Roman the third place player for the entire game].
Nisan writes: True. First place for Yedidya who did not truly capitalize on going first most rounds. He also went last with the lieutenant for a few rounds. Nisan and Yedidya had piety Lords, while Nisan and Roman had arcana.
Nisan was in the lead for round 2-7 with the most missions completed. In the last two rounds, David completed 25 and 20 point missions, and Roman completed a 25 point mission of his own. Everyone enjoyed the game, I think.
A fun day, with 23 people playing at peak time in the afternoon, more people came later after some had left. Mazal tov to Ofer and Michal on their one-week wedding anniversary. Thank you to everyone for recording scores, bringing snacks and games, and moving furniture, and to Gili for some of the pictures.
Binyamin Z 58, Devora 35, Alan 26, Yiscah 24, Michael 19
Roman 36, Ron 25, Assaf 21, Eli 9
Roman taught them. Eli is not a Eurogamer, Ron liked the game and did well for his first play, as did Assaf.
Binyamin Z/Nadine, Devora/Yiscah
Binyamin helped everyone with instructions on how to play optimally. On the last hand, he bid 1NT. I had 13 points, 4 hearts, and AKx of spades and wanted to bid 4 hearts, but he said I should bid my honorless 4-card club suit. We ended up in 4 hearts; he made 7, he had 5 hearts and the queen dropped. So he asked Ben for his opinion on whether he should have gone to small slam, Ben basically said yes. He said he would have bid 4 hearts like I wanted to, unless he was playing with Binyamin, in which case he would know he had to bid the clubs.
Gili 188, Jon 178, Avi 121
Jon: I decided to try this one more time to see if it was as finicky as I recalled or if it was just that my first play was overwhelming. I remain convinced that the game should have been streamlined and a few mechanics taken out. I WAS less overwhelmed, but I don’t think I will play it too often.
First play for Avi; he shared my sentiments, and by the time we were halfway through he wanted it to be over. We stuck it out. I thought I was doing OK, managing to build a building every round by the skin of my teeth, which should have given me a tidy sum. Unfortunately, owing to the luck of my first mission draws, I was a single tile shy of competing my last mission, which lost me at least 10 points. Gili finished all of her missions but was one shy of finishing her buildings, she beat me by 10 points, and I’m not sure how she beat me. If I ever play this again, I am going to try building all my tents, just to see what happens.
Castles of Burgundy
Binyamin Z 238, Nadine 205, Ofer 151
Jon: I taught this to Ben, Binyamin, and Ofer. Ben got bad luck with his rolls and was thoroughly sick of the game by the end of the first phase; he was perhaps too tired to figure out how all of the buildings worked, and I don’t really blame him; the iconography is not terrible, but it’s not great. On the other hand, Binyamin really liked the game and scored pretty highly.
I was happy to take over for Ben instead of playing Frank’s Zoo. Binyamin had placed the same buildings in the same area, and I let him do it again to finish a section because he had taken the building based on playing that way. I got good yellow tiles – the 3 bonus for colors of tiles sold, and the play the same building in areas, that Binyamin should have had, but it wasn’t enough to beat Binyamin’s yellow 4 point bonus tiles for 2 buildings, and his first place in several colors.
Gili, Roman, Yonatan, Avi, Noam, and Alan beat the game in this co-op.
Michal 9, Devora 7, Binyamin R 6, Yiscah 4
Yiscah 25, Binyamin R 14, Eszter 14, Devora 13
Eitan 20, Emily 13, Ofer 10, Michal 8
In the last turn Eitan got two series of dancers. Eitan said he exploited a loophole which allows combining extra actions with additional card draws.
Jon 64, Michael 52, Avi 44
Michael had requested the farming game with the apples ahead of time, Jon realized which game he meant.
Jon: I taught this to Avi and refreshed Michael’s memory of the game. It was a nice experience for all, as I remember, but in the end my experience gave me the edge. The end scores were pretty close, however.
Eli 25, Efrat and Yossi 17, Eitan 9, Ron 1, Emily 1
At least they all had positive scores. Our house version of Ra with a Biblical theme.
Lords of Waterdeep
Avi 133, Gili 122, Noam 116
Second play for Avi and Noam.
Jon: David and I drafted and we both ended up playing colors that we weren’t expecting. David played BRG and, while he got out a lot of his strength, it didn’t seem to be enough. I played BWu, with many fliers and some control cards. In the first game, my fliers took him down. In the second, I started with only one mana. I tossed a creature to get my second, which was luckily the right color for me to cast a spell that let me pay life for 2 more cards. I got out one more, a mana unicorn, and that was enough to get me started until more flowed in. We traded some kills, we both played a few big creatures, and then I took some of his out and he resigned.
Devora 95, Ofer 59
Devora +, Haim 41, Guy and Gilad 19
Binyamin R 92, Yosef 91, Eszter 90, Nadine 74
Eszter has the game but hadn’t played. Yosef taught us, he had read the rules but never played, so we looked up things as we went, and of course played a few things wrong. The cards were in German but it doesn’t matter because it’s just the card title, no text otherwise, we had the rules in English, and he taught in Hebrew. The game pieces are beautiful, and it’s a nice game. I forgot to do one or two things which led to my having no moves for about half the game, because I was out of tiles and money. Everyone else had tons and couldn’t understand it. I forgot to place one guy when I build a castle, which would have given me a few more tiles. I did have bad luck with tile drawing – I had three down, and every time I drew three more, which is limited to once per the three rounds, none were the forests which let you draw more tiles. I also forgot that the point of the purple churches was to get cards, which also would have helped me get more tiles. So the problem seems to have been my playing, and not the game. The theme is well-integrated as you have masquerades to increase your rank, but it resets twice per round.
Yiscah, Shira, Haim
David 15/17, Roman 13/14, Ksenia 11/15
David taught this to Ksenia who we all enjoyed seeing on her visit from Poland. We were going to use the German side, but three regions didn’t seem balanced. I left to play 7 Wonders Duel before we started, and after Ksenia and others came.
Devora 15, Yiscah 10, Binyamin Z 4
First play for all of them.
Emily 54, Yonatan 54, Noam 51, Ofer 43,Michal 42, Eitan 37
7 Wonders Duel
Yosef 88, Nadine 75
I had wanted to try this. It’s more interesting than 7 Wonders, with a similar theme and feeling, but still a lot of luck. When you select cards, it opens up new cards for the other player/s. I made mistakes with this a few times early on, and a few other mistakes. Yosef is experienced so he gave me advice. I thought he’d end up further ahead than he did. There are three ways to win; I was in a good position to win with military, two away, but the cards worked out for him, and he took advantage to block me. He was able to take the last card he needed to win in green, but preferred to keep playing and count points, he said otherwise the points are a waste. Counting points seemed complicated and time consuming, he did it. We played in French, his main language and my first one.
Binyamin R 150, Eszter 128, Nadine 127, Assaf 115
New to the others. Binyamin was competing with me for the lead most of the game, but pulled ahead at the end. He caught on well to what he needed to do. Eszter didn’t realize she should pay and get points when placing daughters, but we gave back the 5 she had paid for points with the bonus and back paid for all her placements, which gave her more points and caught her up to near me; she passed me by one at the very end. Assaf only had three helpers, Binyamin had the most.
Jon: I taught Avi how to play this, and he really liked it. We played three times, he won twice. He asked to play it again several times when I wasn’t available.
Jon 134, Binyamin 114, David 11, Ben 110
Jon: I taught this to Ben, David, and Binyamin. David like it and wanted to play again. Ben seemed to like it, too. Binyamin didn’t like it, because there is nothing to do when it is not your turn and the other players’ turns took too long for him. It’s true that there is not much to do on your turn, and not much in the way of player interaction or interfering with other players (other than taking the building he wants), but I think the game is fast enough and interesting enough to be good; I actually really like it.
Even though I had the highest income at the start, I was cash shy for a lot of the game. Binyamin took early greens but he ended up with negative income and no money, which made many of his last turns useless; even lakes couldn’t bring him enough cash not to lose them, and he couldn’t save money to buy income generating buildings. David also had a lot of cash, from the building that doubles lake income, which he then doubled again (for triple). He made use of his cash finally in the last third of the game hovering near the top of income and reputation until the last round. But it was too late, and he had no bonuses. Ben and I each made two bonuses, and Binyamin made three. On the last move of the game, Ben handed Binyamin his third bonus in order to take around 14 points himself.
Tichu and Where’s Tichu?
Avi/Nadine 375, Jon/David 225
We started the day with this. My favorite Tichu partner, and players. When David said maybe the teams aren’t fair, Avi said we like playing together, and I said it’s worth losing for the times we do manage to beat such good players. First hand I called a Tichu and made it. The others asked me why I called it so early, at least a hand before I played my first card, and I said because I always forget to call it if I wait. On another hand Avi could have gone out first, but wanted to give me a chance to play so we could go out first and second, but neither one of us ended up going out first, he should have just gone out. Jon thought about calling a Tichu but decided not to. One game he did well, but would have done better if he had remembered that he had passed David the Dragon and therefore knew where it was. We stopped when more people came, which I had said at the beginning would be our strategy.
Jon/Ben 735, David/Assaf 565
We couldn’t find Tichu among all the games people brought, which were stacked on shelves, couches and tables. Whenever I asked if they had looked somewhere they said yes. I know things slip between my couch pillows, so I looked carefully, and found it with a few others small games behind a back pillow.
Jon: We taught Ben and Assaf how to play. Ben picked it up quickly; Assaf took a bit longer, but they both seemed to enjoy it (it helped Ben’s enjoyment that we were winning). Ben was my teammate. David called and made 2 grand tichus, including one on the opening hand. I called and made regular tichu on the second hand. Even when our opponents made tichus, they always seemed to end up with the short end on points, so Ben and I did very well.
Ticket to Ride
Shira 123, Yiscah 121, Devora 109, Haim 98
Year of the Dragon
Shira 112, Ben 105, David 86, Haim 95
David taught this to the others, and then proceeded to do much worse than he usually does. They were all close in the number of people left at the end.
Participants: Jon, Jonathan, Roman, Gili, Aaron, Shneur, Alan, Francis, Karina
I’m writing this late, so I may have crossed my names.
I also can’t remember the lovely woman who spoke only Ukrainian and a bit of English. Shneur? Karina is Roman’s girlfriend who spoke mostly Russian.
Francis is a volunteer from Kenya who works nearby. I had him over for shabbat meal and found out that he likes games. This was his first visit.
Jon 48, Jonathan 29, Roman 52, Aaron 40, Shneur 47, Alan 49, Ka 40
First play for all but me, and I believe Aaron. I started with the board that gives a free science symbol at second level, but could only pick up 3 science cards during the game (without sacrificing too much). My RHO Jonathan produced almost no resources, so I had to build my own. I was also shy in money until the end. I ended with 19 blue points a small amount of everything else except for purple.
Shneur had the most science (18) but no blue. Alan had the most blue (22) and was the only one with a full monument. Ka has strong purple and science, but -4 in military and not much else. Roman had 15 in military, 10 coins (with very strong resources), and a fair amount in blue and purple.
Age of Empires III
Roman, Jon, Aaron, Shneur, Karina+
First game for all but me. Karina won. I lost an important discovery with 5 colonists (it required 6) and then lost another one with 4 colonists (it required 4). Luckily, even though I thought I also lost out on my chance to buy two buildings in the last round by the single coin I should have gotten from either of those discoveries, it turns out that I had enough after all. Instead, I couldn’t buy two buildings in the last round because Aaron purposely blocked me from doing so, even though he couldn’t buy one himself. He thought he was blocking Shneur, but in fact screwed me instead.
Aaron got the initial $20 building followed by two more buildings, and he was the only one with real soldiers in the New World, but he never had more than 3 income the entire game. Shneur picked up two early merchant ships – even when he couldn’t use the second one – and then a third, and then the building that made each of us pay him $1 per ship per round. By the last round he had 5 merchant ships. We all thought he was going to win, but Karina was massively into missionaries and had such a huge lead in colonists in the New World that she kept ahead in the end.
Our game took a VERY long time.
Gili, Jonathan, Francis, Alan
I didn’t see how this went, but they played with the real rules about curses that I won’t play with. Still, they seemed to enjoy it.
Participants: Jon, Nissan, Binyamin, Omri, Gili, Aaron, Shaul, Tal
From famine to feast. Binyamin came for the first time; he has wanted to come for a while but wasn’t able to. He also brought his friend Nissan, who lives pretty close and also should have come sooner. 🙂 Gili brought two nephews, Omri and Shaul. All of the new people were experienced players, more or less.
We waited for a few of the participants to come after maariv.
Jon, Gili, Shaul, Nissan, Omri
Score: 16. First play for everyone except for Gili and me. We managed to play without too many information slips. It was still a fun game, far more for the tense moments of doing the wrong or right thing, often by accident, than for the end result. We killed the 2s in two colors fairly quickly, but we made it up to 5 in one color and then 4 and 5 in two other colors with 1 life left. Yay us.
Nissan 58, Omri 55, Jon 53, Binyamin 49, Aaron 42, Gili 41, Shmuel 28
First play for everyone except me, Binyamin (who brought the game) and Gili (who had played once or twice). First play with 7 players for all of us I think (I’ve played with 6), which is a little odd since the cards never make it back to you.
Everyone seemed to enjoy it, and it played fairly smoothly even with 7. Nissan won with strong military as well as decent blue and purple. I thought I was doing well with my blue (I thought green would be impossible with 7 players) and my wonder but that wasn’t enough. I played with very few resources but yellow cards that let me buy them cheaply. Omri’s second place was earned with military and decent showings with his wonder, blue and green (4 of a kind). Binyamin had tons of resources and was hoping to make up the point differential on the last age, but it wasn’t enough.
Omri 48, Shaul 33, Nissan 30, Gili 21
First play for everyone except for Gili, who had played once a long time ago. I had them play with my rule tweak that has the curse only kill the next disk in line for a treasure card, instead of the entire treasure (which swings the game too much). Everyone seemed to enjoy this one, too.
Jon/Binyamin 460ish, Tal/Aaron 440ish
First play for Binyamin, second for Aaron. They didn’t do much of a job teaching Binyamin how to play while I was teaching the others how to play Tobago, so the first few hands were a series of rules surprises for Binaymin. He still caught on quickly.
We started with a 200 point jump, then Aaron/Tal made two Tichu’s +80 points on each. We pulled ahead again, and then Binyamin lost a Tichu when Aaron got in and played two full houses and then went out. Then I called Grand Tichu and Aaron did the exact same thing again. After that we were still only down 200 points or so. On the last hand, down about 210 points, I called Grand Tichu again and made it + at least half the points. I think we ended up slightly ahead, but we didn’t count thoroughly so we might have actually tied. Anyhoo, Aaron continues to love the game and I think Binyamin has been converted.
Leastwise, Binyamin and Nissan promised to come again. Hopefully Omri and Shaul will, too.