Tuesday 2nd June

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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Alex on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 09:54

We played Road Rally USA, a bring & buy bargain

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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  paulyg on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 09:59

Alex wrote:We played Road Rally USA, a bring & buy bargain
I prefer "Alex's Racing Game". Can you get on designing that, please? ;-)
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Mattel on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 10:42

Thanks all for another enjoyable evening - this time focussing on the smaller games for me and with a number of new and interesting things to play.

I'd managed to get a few games in but also spent a fair amount of time watching some of the games in progress - Lords of Vegas and Star Wars Armada I'm looking forward to playing in the future at some point.

After all my comments about splendour I didn't even play it in the end! but I'll still have a go when it next turns up. Disappointed I forgot about playing skull and got caught into my usual later-evening Avalon session - must try harder to resist!

I managed games of Love letter (original), Sushi Go, Panic Lab,  Diamonsters, and Avalon (of course)

Love letter I still enjoy for the moment and I watched a few of the batman love letter hands which didn't seem too different - a really quick game to fill 10 minutes - not brilliant but not too bad and quick to pick up.

Sushi Go was another fun filler game lasting a bit longer than love letter at 20-25 minutes though most of that was from getting the passing of the cards right and not a game-issue. Again a fun filler game with lovely cards. (No pudding for you!)

Panic Lab was a game type I've not come across before in that it felt like a cross between a child's game of find the *shape/colour/animal on the cards coupled with the ridiculous competition you get from gamers and some added complications. At heart it's a work-out-the-puzzle-and-slap-your-hand-onto-the-answer game but presented in a simple appealing way which was easy to pick up and play for 20 minutes but I suspect will not be everyone's cup of tea. N.B - never play this game with Karl. Replayability should be high if you like the game due to the shuffle-n-deal board generation.

Diamonsters - Was an interesting little filler game with a degree of bluffing - plays up to 6 however we suspected 6 will make it pot luck due to the mechanics eliminating players who table the same bid. We played with 4 and it felt like even that was a player too many - either that or Sam and myself think in exactly the same way - 4 eliminations in a row were frustrating! A fun filler game but wouldn't replay well for me unless it was with 2/3 players.

Avalon - was - well, Avalon - but no wait! Jamie had brought along his Lancelot cards to twist the game a bit more and we had to suffer through a game with no cowboy hats. In essence the Lancelot variant gives you one player on each side good/bad who is the good or evil version of Lancelot. At the start of each turn their allegiance can switch (up to twice in a game) meaning what you thought you knew from the game so far (or knew as Merlin) could be right out of the window. Coupled with the excalibur mechanic allowing modification of votes and the removal of a usually pretty pro-good mechanic (lady of the lake) we had a very uncertain and experimental game.

I was a fairly vocal loyal servant but some barn-storming spy play for the first two missions ensured I pushed myself onto a 2 x spy loaded mission - outing myself as a very unlikely Merlin - AND (when the mission duly failed) casting serious doubt on my alignment. Playing in a more vocal style is all well and good but at this point I'd just dug myself in too deep and anything else I tried to say seemed to be just confirming to everyone that I was a spy.

Good duly lost the second two missions an while we managed to pull mission 5 out of the hat the spies were concentrating of hunting Merlin and not getting the direct win via three mission fails. Karl called on 'good Lancelot' to reveal himself - which Gareth duly did - in the hope that Percival would fess up and thus reveal themself - I'm not sure on the logic of that play - but it did indicate that Gareth was unlikely to be Merlin.

With myself and Gareth out of the running for Merlin the evil team had a choice of Jen, Tom, Karl, and Nicole effectively and they were dubious of Jen, Nicole, and Tom from their interactions - Jamie wanted to keep me in the running for Merlin but Dave persuaded him otherwise and then pointed out that in the last mission between Karl and Gareth they picked a perfect team (no evil players) - if they believed Gareth WAS Lancelot - that made Karl Merlin..... and he duly was.

Well play the evil players Dave, Jamie and Andy - or more precisely (as I think Jamie and Gareth were good/evil Lancelots) well played the teams of:

Dave, Andy, Jamie (didn't really play this team as Lancelot switched in the first round before any action)
Dave, Andy, Gareth
Dave, Andy, Jamie


I don't believe we used the excalibur mechanic well for good at all - but it was a first play with it for me so I was over-cautious - it's strength appears to be in use in the early rounds and then the threat of excalibur is real for any spies on the team voting later. One thing I think we'd agree on is that it's a more complicated mechanic than the Lady of the Lake and I feel it's swung the balance back to the evil team.

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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 11:10

I played poorly. Feels like the last few games, I've been struggling to play evil well. Dave was superb, he totally needs an Oscar!

Oh, and I wasn't Lancelot, it was Andy...

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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Mattel on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 11:44

Jamie wrote:I played poorly. Feels like the last few games, I've been struggling to play evil well. Dave was superb, he totally needs an Oscar!

Oh, and I wasn't Lancelot, it was Andy...



Ah thanks Jamie - I'm glad he was that makes more sense of what I was thinking in the game. I'd had too much sugar by the end to remember correctly.

Interesting you thought you played poorly - is that based on your voting choices?

From the other side of the fence you had a very good game and I would have had you after at least 3 others in my suspects list.


So the two Lancelots were sat next to each other.......

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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 12:23

I felt I was a poor evil player, not because of voting choices, which I felt were okay. It was more to do with not being vocal, not voicing my (made up) logical deductions as to who is good or evil. Dave was doing just that, and doing it very well. You were too Matt, though for a good player, it's not so much of a problem, because you're not having to make the whole thing up on thr fly!

I really enjoyed Lancelot though, and Excalibur. Mucho fun!

Yep, two Lancelots next to each other...
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  SamVS on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 12:41

I realised last night it isn't really correct to call Om Nom Nom, Love Letter, Diamonsters, or games of that type, "bluffing games", when they are 70% guessing, 20% deduction and 10% bluffing. They are guessing games, which are close relatives to bluffing games, such as Coup and Skull, which are a good 40% or 50% bluffing.

Guessing games are generally worse for me than bluffing games. Om Nom Nom gets a recommendation for upping the deduction element, if you can keep track of other players cards, for looking very lovely and integrating an appropriate theme, and for the more interesting tiered points based scoring that means you can win big, lose big, or just be happy you survived — so much more engaging to reveal cards in this system then to guess which card somebody has in Love Letter and be wrong 70% of the time. Diamonsters, on the other hand, really was diabolical. Is saying 100% guessing unfair? I got a few laughs from constantly playing the same card as Matt, but next time I would prefer Guess Who (sorry Paul!).

These percentages might be coloured by my performance in these games of course, as when we met Kes, Lizzy and Gary at the Expo after they had played Om Nom Nom: "There's no skill in it, of course" says Kes after they explain the rules, to which Gary naturally replies "I think there is a lot of skill". No Token Of Affection for guessing who won and who lost! More on this in regards to Lords of Vegas.

My ratings are pretty broad, with anything I significantly like gets a 3, anything I didn't have strong feelings towards but wouldn't avoid playing again gets a 2, and anything I would avoid playing again gets 1. Sushi Go gets a 3 because I think it is a delightful condensation of a card drafting game into a 15 minute filler, and totally thematic too. How much theme can you pack into a 15 minute card game about cartoon sushi with smiley faces, you ask? The answer is this much. As far as featherweight games go I think Sushi Go is not far behind For Sale and One Night Werewolf at the front of the pack, which both kind of do the same thing for bidding games and hidden role games respectively.

Lords of Vegas was the best game I played last night. "Monopoly with some thought gone into it" is what I pegged it as before we started, and I say that turned out to be accurate. I said it was primarily a game of luck (full disclosure: I said this whilst I was losing) which John disagreed with, so to elaborate I would suggest it is 40% luck and 60% non-luck factors such as strategy and negotiation, which is to say luck is still the biggest single factor out of luck, strategy and negotiation, but if you strategize and negotiate well you should be able to overcome bad luck over the course of the game (and if you get lucky you should be able to make up for some shitty strategy — unfortunately this did not work out so well for me at John's in-game casino). Regardless, the large luck factor is no mark against the game, because, you know, dice: rolling to see who would become the boss of the casino were the highlights of the game — they have a good system for determining this, a mix of giving the player with the most dice the best chance, but also allowing for some crazy improbable outcomes where there could be several stages of dice rolling, players could be out of the running then end up back in a few rolls later and eventually win the whole casino. Trading is flexible and almost everything you do directly effects somebody else on the board, so the level of player interaction is high.

One of the first articles I read on modern boardgames was this one: 6 Board Games That Ruined It for Everyone, which suggests modern alternatives to classic board games

http://www.cracked.com/blog/6-board-games-that-ruined-it-everyone/

Instead of battleship, he suggests Richochet Robots. I would suggest On Nom Nom.
Instead of Risk, he suggests Settlers of Catan. I would suggest Eclipse.
Instead of Monopoly, he suggests Power Grid. I would suggest Lords of Vegas.
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:09

Sam wrote:Instead of battleship, he suggests Richochet robots. I would suggest On Nom Nom.
Instead of Risk, he suggests Settlers of Catan. I would suggest Eclipse.
Instead of Monopoly, he suggests Power Grid. I would suggest Lords of Vegas.

I really like Risk (though, to be fair, I *really* like Eclipse), not sure what problem he has with Risk! Maybe, it's the fact that it can drag on? Strongly tempted to buy Risk 2210AD, if I could find the players (or if anyone has it, would love to give it a go at the club). Also, totally need to play more Eclipse. Actually, Scott was saying he's really in to Eclipse too; so there's definitely quite a few people at the club keen on the game. We should play more. Love them missile dread-noughts!


Last edited by Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:12; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:10

We need to play Game of Thrones too! Especially after that last killer episode (season 5 episode Cool ... don't want to spoil it for anyone, but boy, what an episode!!
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  SamVS on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:26

Risk is the game that got me into board games. I have never played it as a child but me and some high school friends played it one day after a party and it was revelatory. One of those friends was into other board games to, and the next game we played was Twilight Imperium. Lol. I forgot about board games for a few years after high school but the three or four games of Risk I played with those friends are some of my fondest board gaming memories, so it would be disingenuous to suggest Risk has been anything but a 10/10 game for me. I won't play it again for fear of realising it actually is as crap as people claim (I can certainly now imagine that it is).
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:36

It's not crap at all! There are quite a few interesting variants too; for example, where you start with a castle; which gives you an additional 2 armies, and if you lose it, you're out of the game; normal territories can only hold 10 armies, castle territories can hold any number of armies. There are more variants too. Rist 2210AD looks really cool too. Great reviews on Amazon and BGG, you only get 5 turns though...
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  SamVS on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:40

http://teriyaki.hubpages.com/hub/Paranoia-Risk-The-Best-Risk-Variant-Ever

This is the most interesting sounding varient I have come across. I'll certainly try this if somebody has the game.
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  paulyg on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:49

I used to play Risk a lot (pretty much every lunchtime at school). The key for me to enjoying it was not to play the board game but instead to play it on the computer. This would condense a 2-3 hour game into about an hour. And playing with the same group of people is pretty fun, too, as breaking treaties or alliances has further-reaching consequences :-)

I'm quite interested in Risk Legacy (and I believe it's a bit shorter than the traditional world domination because it's mission based) but not sure if I can go back to playing it on a board!
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:50

Sam wrote:http://teriyaki.hubpages.com/hub/Paranoia-Risk-The-Best-Risk-Variant-Ever

This is the most interesting sounding varient I have come across. I'll certainly try this if somebody has the game.

Yeah, that variant sounds really good. I have the game, would definitely be up for a game or Paranoia Risk!
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Jamie on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:52

PaulG wrote:I'm quite interested in Risk Legacy (and I believe it's a bit shorter than the traditional world domination because it's mission based) but not sure if I can go back to playing it on a board!

Me too! I think you need to play 15 games with the same group though? Wonder how long a single game takes? If it would be a good Tuesday night game?
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  paulyg on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 13:59

Sam wrote:I realised last night it isn't really correct to call Om Nom Nom, Love Letter, Diamonsters, or games of that type, "bluffing games", when they are 70% guessing, 20% deduction and 10% bluffing. They are guessing games, which are close relatives to bluffing games, such as Coup and Skull, which are a good 40% or 50% bluffing.

Guessing games are generally worse for me than bluffing games. Om Nom Nom gets a recommendation for upping the deduction element, if you can keep track of other players cards, for looking very lovely and integrating an appropriate theme, and for the more interesting tiered points based scoring that means you can win big, lose big, or just be happy you survived — so much more engaging to reveal cards in this system then to guess which card somebody has in Love Letter and be wrong 70% of the time. Diamonsters, on the other hand, really was diabolical. Is saying 100% guessing unfair? I got a few laughs from constantly playing the same card as Matt, but next time I would prefer Guess Who (sorry Paul!).
I'd agree that they're not true bluffing games. But personally I wouldn't call Love Letter a guessing game. I think Love Letter is at least as much a deduction game as Om Nom Nom. When I'm playing Love Letter I'm constantly playing the odds (how many are there of each card, what's been discarded, which cards would they likely have played last turn instead of what they did play) when trying to figure out what they might have when playing a guard, or whether a rank comparison is the right thing to do, etc.

I think Diamonsters disappoints because it's one-dimensional. There is an element of deduction ("Sam has two 4s in front of him, there's a 3 up for grabs which is worth no diamonds. Because he's got 4s he's likely to be going for three of a kind rather than diamonds so he'll probably bid a 4") but it's extremely limited. And playing the same thing as someone else is just frustrating.

Oh, and I just today got Lost Legacy (3&4) through the post which is a slightly more advanced Love Letter (there's an investigation phase at the end of the game rather than just highest card wins). It's also interesting as there are 4 different sets which you can mix and match to create a custom set of cards for a given game. I'm sure you're desperate to play it, Sam! tongue
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  SamVS on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 14:10

I would still say Love Letter is ultimately a guessing game but you're probably right about what level of deduction there is. I'm probably likely to underestimate what skill is involved because I find the game boring (reverse-halo effect Smile). I'm willing to try Lost Legacy, though
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  DaveB on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 14:12

Sam wrote:I would still say Love Letter is ultimately a guessing game but you're probably right about what level of deduction there is. I'm probably likely to underestimate what skill is involved because I find the game boring (reverse-halo effect Smile). I'm willing to try Lost Legacy, though

Theres definitely the capacity for some deduction in Love Letter. Not as much as say Coup or Resistance but definitely some.
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  Alex on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 14:13

Sam wrote:
Risk is the game that got me into board games. I have never played it as a child but me and some high school friends played it one day after a party and it was revelatory.
Playing risk while high? And after a party? I should imagine it was...
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  SamVS on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 14:15

Laughing

Oh, and to Jen, if she reads these threads after the night, me and Alex (Alex and I?) were admiring your bag of Dominion expansions last night and I have been meaning to play more Dominion since the first night I came to the club some two years ago, so if you are up for a few games just let us know, though it might take me some weeks/months/years to pose a decent challenge to you or Alex.
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Re: Tuesday 2nd June

Post  paulyg on Wed 03 Jun 2015, 14:17

Sam wrote:Laughing

Oh, and to Jen, if she reads these threads after the night, me and Alex (Alex and I?) were admiring your bag of Dominion expansions last night and I have been meaning to play more Dominion since the first night I came to the club some two years ago, so if you are up for a few games just let us know, though it might take me some weeks/months/years to pose a decent challenge to you or Alex.
Count me in for some Dominion too! It's been too long and I have too many unplayed expansions...
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