Tag Archive | bruges

We don’t kill Jon

Welcome back to Binyamin who hasn’t attended in a long time. Best wishes to Sara and Lorenzo who are off to Japan for two months.

Magic

Jon: We played one game and David slaughtered me with an 11/11 double strike trample my deck was actually pretty good and only 2 colors, unlike usual.

3-level Cube Prototype

Binyamin brought a prototype of cube placement, with multiple point counting possibilities.

Hansa Teutonica

Lorenzo 70, Binyamin 54, Sara 46

First play for Sara and Lorenzo.

Lorenzo: One more turn and Binyamin would have won. Teutonica Is nice. It is not the favorite type of game for Sara and me, but it is nice, strategic and I appreciate some direct “fighting”.

Clank

David 86, Nadine F. 77 Jon 76, Nadine 59

Nadine: First play for all. Everyone made it out except for Nadine F. who was on step away, she would have won with the additional 20 points. Jon went first and got off to a good start, Nadine F who went second was also able to pick up a lot of bonus chips. I was last, after David, which reduced my early opportunities, and early on better cards came out for Jon and Nadine F. Though one wasn’t as strong as we thought, we realized later that it was a purple so could only be used one, Jon had only used it once. We also forgot to move the dragon a few times for artifacts. Jon’s cubes got drawn more than anyone else’s until late in the game, it made sense at first due to the first player penalty. Jon had two artifacts and a lot of coins to buy at the market, but he wasn’t able to buy as many cards with points as David or Nadine F. did. I didn’t realize that once I was out of the dungeon I could no longer buy cards, but when I got out I was two away from dying. Jon took more of a risk and managed not to die even though he was two away for several turns, and get more items. At the end we were buying 7 point cards, so fewer new cards, and fewer dragons, came out. How close to dying: Jon 1, Nadine 1, Nadine F 2, David 4.

The game is interesting. David and I felt it has much more luck than Dominion and Thunderstone. Deck building is not the major mechanic because of the travel and dragons. I prefer Dominion even if I’m not good at deck building.

Bruges

Binyamin 51, Sara 42, Lorenzo 39

First play for Sara and Lorenzo.

Lorenzo: The first time I played Bruges gave me the idea that it relies too much on the chance to draw card combos, this time gave the same impression of being based on luck. It is not bad for a game to have luck involved but I would go for something else.

 

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Suburban Belgian Skulls

Jon explained Magic to Haim before we started playing. Haim is back from the US with new games for Jon to figure out how to play.

Skull

Nadine S+, Haim, Gili, Jon, Nadine

Light and pretty

Suburbia

Zvi 114, Gili 108, Haim 76

Gili thought she was ahead until the final scoring. First play for Zvi

Bruges

Jon 41, Nadine 38, Nadine S 34

First play for Nadine S, who is from Belgium and wanted to try it.

Tichu

Jon/Nadine S1010 Haim/Nadine 690

Nadine: It would have been closer if Haim had called Tichu the two times he had good hands and went out first. I made two GTs; Jon did a good job blocking one of my regular Tichus – he called Tichu when I had two cards left, Ace and Dragon, he bombed my long straight and went out, he would have even if I had played differently. Nadine S, my RHO, had called a 2 on a straight including the 1. Then she played a full house with 3 10’s. I had two 2’s, and a bomb of jacks. I realized that I at least needed to ask if I had to play, which I did, so I used my bomb. We hadn’t played in a while. Second time for Nadine S who needed a review and advice. I was following the second World Cup semifinal on my phone, Croatia came back to beat England 2-1.

Farming and Canals

Agricola

Jon 45  Aaron 27  Zvi 22

First play for Aaron and Zvi.

Bruges

Haim 51  Gili 45  Lorenzo 40  Nadine 36

First play for Haim and Lorenzo, who liked the game. Very few 5s and 6s rolled, but all of us except Gili lost 3 points to negative chips.

Tichu

Aaron, Zvi/Jon 1000+  Nadine, Haim around 0

Nadine: I even made a GT, but also missed one that I possibly should have made, but Jon had a good hand to set me. First play for Zvi, he caught on really well, made Tichus mostly on his own, had bombs in his first and third hands.

December 20, 2017

Participants: Jon, Aaron, Nadine, Gili, Haim S, Zvi, Avi K, Klara

David’s son Avi came; we last saw him at Games Day. His friend Zvi also came for the first time.

Harbour

Aaron and I tried out this very miniaturized version of a collect resources / buy buildings game. Gilad (from Modiin) warned me that the volatility (which cannot be planned for) in the market makes planning impossible. For me, the biggest problem is that the game has basically three mechanics, with one or two other mechanics that are so weakly implements that they don’t actually have any effect on the game.

The game is so stripped down that it is basically a slew of ways to move your counters a little to the left and right until you can buy a building, after which you do and start over. Owning the buildings has essentially no effect on game play, so there is almost nothing to the game which is very dull. Which is a shame.

Bruges

Zvi 50+, Aaron 50-, Gili

First play for Zvi, who won with the tie break on money.

Steam

Avi 45, Jon 42, Haim 36, Nadine 28, Klara 25

First play for Klara, Avi, and Haim. All of them felt like they could do better on subsequent plays. Avi got to the high income before any of us, which is usually a sign of victory. I had one more link than he did and was starting to catch up in shipping points, but not enough. Avi spent most of his time on the NE corner of the board, while I had a corridor don the center of the board and over to the west.

Suburbia

Aaron, Zvi

First play for Zvi.

Crokinole

Jon/Avi, Nadine/Haim

We splayed several round as teams, with all sides being very close. We gained 15, 10, 05 points each round, and once we were tied.

Tichu

Nadine/Avi/Aaron+, Jon/Haim

Avi and then Aaron and Nadine gained an initial lead, but then I set tichus a couple of times, which placed us ahead. Before the last round, we were up 870 to their 630. I told Nadine not to worry, because they can just call Grand Tichu and both go out first.

Which they did. Aaron called Grand Tichu, passed me a 2, and called a 5, which destroyed the bottom of my very large run, giving me a far worse hand. Nadine’s second to last play was a long run which I would have been able to beat if I had my 5. And then she went out.

April 19, 2017

Participants: Jon, David, Gili, Aaron, Yael, Nadine

Magic: The Gathering

David+, Jon+

We didn’t have time to Rochester draft, so I chose a balanced color assortment of 120 cards and we created decks from our half. The decks were stronger than usual. David played BG, and I played BRW. Yes, I still played three colors, although, in my defense, all but one of my cards had only one colored mana requirement. I had a few nervous moments at the beginning of both games, but I got out most of my cards without difficulty.

I had many fliers and I was hoping enough to stock David’s ground forces. And I had a Mindcrank, even one of which is pretty insane in a 40 card deck. In the first game, he had a large reach creature and then he had too many big land creatures to block all of them. In the second game, I stopped his ground forces, and even though he was gaining life, I decked him with my small fliers.

Bruges

Jon 60, Gili 51, Aaron 37

First plays for both of them, who wanted to learn. We discovered that I had misread one of the cards that I thought was way over-powered in a previous game. Gili took control of the canals early on, and I couldn’t draw the color card I needed to build the canal segment I wanted, so I concentrated on people and VPs from them. I also had a person that made me more immune to disasters, while Gili played a person that removed some of her tokens.

They both liked it.

Puerto Rico

David 54, Nadine 50, Yael 40

First play for Yael. Nadine writes: David had two big buildings including Custom’s House, as well as Factory and Harbor. Yael did very well for her first time, and we didn’t help her much.

Among the Stars

Gili 88, Jon 83, Aaron 82

First play for Gili and Aaron, and first time I played with objectives. We also played special powers: Gili could use a discarded card, Aaron knew of a secret objective, and I earned a few extra points at the end of the game. I like the game; it’s not rip roaring fun, but it’s a nice management game.

Tichu

David/Aaron 1005, Jon/Nadine 595

Very few bombs, and Aaron made a grand Tichu. They took a steady path to victory.

Passover Games Day 5777

Thank you to everyone who came, and brought snacks, and helped set-up and clean up. Special thanks to Jon for doing the food order, and Jon and Aaron for picking up the food from Black in town, and Aaron for taking some of the pictures.

Most popular games – Five Tribes, Nefarious, Tichu

Intrepid rules resource and teacher – Jon

Special welcome – Emily and Eitan, our stalwart gamers who rarely make it nowadays because they’re raising their own game group.

Amerigo

172 Ariel, 154 Avraham, 123 Aaron, 110 Assaf

Antike

Yael and others

Bora Bora

Emily 149, Assaf 139, Gili 139, Eitan 130

Taught by Gili.

Bridge

Nadine and Avi+, David and Jon

We didn’t officially keep score. Avi and I did pretty well, though Ben said that’s only if you don’t count two missed slams. Jon and Ben managed to have several hands each with less than 6 points.

Ben also played this earlier with another group.

Bruges

Jon 56, Shira 45+, Haim 45-, Avi 41

New to Shira, Haim and Avi, I explained the game to Shira and Haim while Jon and Aaron were picking up the food order, then Jon taught the game after Avi joined.

Jon: The game’s mechanics work okay but they feel disconnected and awkward. Okay to play, but need polishing. Really too much luck. Have to implement some other of my changes.

Five Tribes

Ben 172, Ofek 127, Asif 117, Gili 110

Taught by Gili

Aaron 140, AA 121, A 138, G 125

Ben 205, Yedidya 150, Daniel 129

Game of Thrones

Noam 6, Elad 5, Avi 4, Nati 4, Yael 2, Yochai 0

They stopped after about 7 rounds of 10, a super long game.

Lo Ra

(Nadine 13, Jon 7, Assif 6, Gili 5, Ofek 4)

We stopped after two rounds to play other games because a lot of people arrived. We did not score tribes or Gili’s Ark, Jon had by far the most in tribes.

Love Letter

David +, Aaron, Avi, Nadine 0

Avi 4, Nadine 4

Avi lost the first four on the first or second round, due mainly to luck that he couldn’t do anything about.

Magic

Daniel+, David

Jon+, David

Jon: In Magic, David and I entered a vast build up of on the ground forces, each hoping to find the flyer in our deck that would get through,

My forces were a litter stronger, so as our decks were dwindling, I decided to attack with everything, leaving a few behind as defense. David and I were being hurried by you to rejoin Tichu, and he didn’t feel like calculating out how to defend against me, so we both agreed to just abandon the game. So I didn’t actually win.

Nefarious

Daniel 33, Yael 25, Ben 29, Yedidya 25

Ben 22, Yael 20, Daniel 15, Yedidya 11

Niagara

Avi+, Gili, Nadine

The game needs more players.

Notre Dame

Gili 64, Assaf 57, David. B 55, Sara 23

Taught by Gili.                       

Power Grid

Ben 16 16, Jon 16 16, Nadine 15 16, David  8 8 Banana. Cities / Power plant total

David, very unusually, didn’t do well. As usual, I started off well then blew it. I got the 50 Power Plant relatively early on, but had no spots where I could build during Step Two, and by Step Three, Ben was too far ahead with cities and plants. He and Jon agreed to tie rather than going for another round, Jon had slightly more money.

Jon: Same idea here as in Magic. We got to the end game, and didn’t feel like slogging through one more round to see who would win. David did poorly because we played on the Benelux board, first time for all of us, and he misjudged the value of an early 4 power green plant.

Puerto Rico

Yosef  56, David B  49, Jon 48, Nadine  47, Sara 44

David B gave a thorough and detailed explanation to Sara, including strategic analysis, to teach her the game. David and Yosef spent time during the game analyzing their best moves, many to block me, then selected the role Jon knew all along they would take. Yosef was first, he started with Prospector which is unusual in our group, though we also rarely play 5-player. He said it was to stop Jon from being able to build Tobacco on the first round, but Jon said that doesn’t matter since it would ship. Another game where I started off well, but didn’t play well enough afterwards. Though I don’t think I could have beaten all those experts.

Jon: You definitely had a strong initial advantage, but twice you didn’t craft when you should have; once you took captain and once you took something else. As a result, the timing and your money didn’t quite work out. Also, Yosef got to five good with Factory, and so could take the two big buildings ahead of you. And the fact that he had tobacco ahead of me gave him reasonable early trading and late shipping.

Sara had a coffee monopoly for a while, so she also did okay, but no buildings to speak of. I had tobacco following Yosef, which hurt, but I had a harbor which helped.

R-Eco

Gili 12, Jon 10, Assaf 7, Ofek 6, Nadine 6

An early filler, we played with random number order. Eszter and others played a game later.

Sentinels of the Multiverse

Cliff, Mishy, Avi, two others

Per Cliff: VICTORY WAS OURS!! The boys enjoyed it but thought it was too easy.

Study in Emerald

Mishy, Eszter, Assaf

Per Cliff: Assaf won a close victory. We all enjoyed the game but definitely needs some replay to really learn the strategies.

Tichu

820 Aaron and Ben (finished with David), 245 Yedidya and Daniel

Jon and David +, Nadine and Avi

We didn’t play a whole game, we switched to Bridge

Jon: I didn’t get to play this enough.

Tigris and Euphrates

Avi and others

Walnut Grove

Aaron 27, David 25, Nadine 23, Eszter 19

Taught by Nadine, David and Eszter hadn’t played in a long time, new to Aaron. David took a lot of workers early, Aaron had two extra storage areas and two bonuses for goods in storage, and 8 goods left, nice job. I didn’t do well with my board, and didn’t take another worker til late. Eszter took an extra storage right away which helped her.

Jon: I taught Amerigo, Tigris and Euphrates, R-Eco to Eszter and some others, Lo Ra, and Antike, but didn’t play them (except for Lo Ra).

 

March 15, 2017

Participants: Jon, David K, Nadine, Gili, Elad, Daniel, Aaron

Back at my place after several weeks at Nadine’s.

Magic: The Gathering

David++, Jon

There were no more than one or two creatures of power 4. We had to rely on our boosting cards. I played BWG, while David played RU. Both of us had reasonable mana, although David was a bit shy in the first game. I played with only 15 mana (5 each) and had no problems. But I still went down. In both cases, we had a standoff on the ground, while David’s fliers and unblockables were stronger.

Bruges

Jon 75, Nadine 52, David 48

First play for David, third for me. While I already have a number of suggestions on how to change this to make it better (for my group), we played this (nearly) straight so that David could get an idea of the official game rules. This game is one that substitutes calculation for actual decision making, at least in part, which is a hacky game design technique. There are too many random elements artificially conspiring to make what you want to do difficult, so you have to plan every round, sometimes two, from the start of the round. Despite this, the choices (once you get past the calculations) are good, and the calamities that affect you are not annoying enough to actually wreck the game play.

The only change I insisted on was rolling the dice before choosing cards, which is a straightforward improvement. David had some initial confusion and irritation, but ended up liking the game. Nadine took the first bonus with canals. I played a person who kicked everyone else back on the cathedral track, which gave me the bonus for that. Then I pulled ahead of David one round to get the personality bonus (and then I fell back and let him get it). Both of them had better luck than me with the colors of cards they picked, and both of them had people out that gave then bonus actions.

I then pulled a seemingly overpowered card that gave me 2 points for each canal track, once per round (with a blue worker). With a little better luck with my card draws, I gained 2, then 4, then 8, then 12 points each round using this card. The canals I built also gave me the 3 point canal bonus, the 6 point monument, and my last personal bonus (canals).

I need to check how many other overpowered cards there are. That one is a doozy.

I think my change to the game is going to be like this: 1) I will create a Magic: The Gathering like color wheel. You will then be able to buy a neighboring color for $1, or an opposing color for $2, whenever you pay a card. 2) Some way to gain a few extra $, such as $1 income for each 3 or 4 rolled on the dice.

Suburbia

Aaron, Gili, Elad, Daniel

I don’t know what happened here.

Nefarious

Jon++, David, Nadine, Daniel, Aaron, Elad

First plays for Daniel and Elad. The first game gave us +1 point for every card we played, which made smaller cards even more powerful. The second game saw us losing money down to the nearest $5 (when over $5), which slowed the game down. I think the low valued cards are still slightly overpowered, which is a slight flaw. However, the game is still great. Strange how my group seems to like it more than most others.

Tichu

Jon/Aaron 1020, David/Nadine 980

David and Nadine pulled ahead with a series of early Tichus, and it was looking bad for us. We were down something like 940 to 360. I then bid and made a Grand Tichu, with us collecting 100 points from tricks. Then we won 75 trick points to their 25. And then I bid and made another Grand Tichu and 85 trick points. A classic Tichu underdog victory.