Participants: Jon, David K, Chaim, Shira, Raanan, Binyamin, Aaron, Schneur, Nissan, Jonathan
A hopping game night. Chaim and Shira are Hebrew speakers who found the Hebrew Facebook group, but they managed in English. They had some game experience, including Agricola. Raanan is the visiting son of a friend, also with some game experience and a lot of game sense.
Chaim 12, Shira 14, David 16, Jon, Raanan
First play for Chaim, Shira, and Raanan. They all liked it, and Chaim and Shira even took first and second place, which is amazing for beginners. I knew I was out by early-to-midgame, when I ran out of cash. Raaanan was overly ambitious in collecting cards for sequences. David ended with a single card and no coins.
Binyamin, Aaron, Schneur, Nissan, Jonathan
First play for many of them, they abandoned the game after a few rounds. I think they simply decided to move on to meatier games.
Nissan 91, Binyamin 77, Shneur 59
I didn’t see how this played, but it looked nice.
Played after Abyss.
Played at the end of the evening. David appeared to think it wasn’t his kind of game, or at least not until he had more experience with it.
Jon 9, Jonathan 8, Raanan 7
First play for Schneur and Raanan, who both loved it. I rarely get to play, since most of the older group members don’t like it so much.
We played to 9 instead of 10, to cut the length of the game down to something reasonable, although I realize that this favors a bit less conflict. Which is not a bad side effect, in my opinion.
I’m not going to claim victory. Jonathan started as the Greeks, which gave him an advantage as Raanan immediately built up armies to threaten me, which made me have to build some in return. Raanan pretty much did nothing the entire game except build armies and expand his empire, although he eventually claimed a point for 3 temples. He had 4 points from cities (20+) and 1 more from destroying one of Jonathan’s temples. I forget where his last point came from. He had no technology.
Meanwhile, since I was occupied, Jonathan went forward quickly on the technology track, as well as getting to 5 cities, 7 seas, and 3 temples. Despite losing his temple, he had enough gold to win the game on the turn after mine by claiming the complete technology track.
I struck first blood by killing a few of Raanan’s armies and one of his cities, and then we had a cold peace for a while. I would have liked to have attacked Jonathan, but he was so far away and it took me a long time to get to some extra movement technologies. I was first to Monarchy and Democracy (defense), which made it difficult for Raanan to attack me, since I killed his cities much more easily than he killed mine. Close tot he end of the game I was a single boat away from taking out one of Jonathan’s temples, so I took out one of Raanan’s instead, which took me to eight points; not enough to win the game, and Jonathan was poised to win on his turn. But, after Raanan pointed it out, I forgot how easy it was to conquer his cities. I simply conquered four of his cities and gained the extra point I needed to win.
David 155, Chaim 125, Aaron 123, Shira 122
First play for Chaim and Shira. I didn’t see how it played, but they seemed to have a good time. Aaron ended with 51 points in yellow meeples, but was shy in board tiles. Shira had 57 in board tiles counting camels, while David had 51 counting castles. Chaim’s main points were his 40 in goods cards.
David, Aaron, Chaim, Shira
First play for Chaim and Shira. They ended after 2 hands. David went out first both times.
Schneur+, Binyamin, Jon, Raanan
We played on one board with one flag, and a mishmash of rules that were not exactly correct but close enough. First plays for Raanan and Schneur. Raanan is the only one that fell off the board. Twice.
I got stuck with one set of cards that had only backwards and forwards, which hurt me while both Binyamin and Schneur progressed. Binyamin also had card troubles; he turned around for a while on a save point, but at least he got a second bonus card for his trouble.