The Bracknell bunch season finale took place on Friday night as there was a postponement due to Paul's trip to the orderly realms of Switzerland. On James' arrival it was impressed upon him in no uncertain terms that he stood a chance of topping the ratio table should things go his way. His excitement became somewhat dulled when he realised that there was no trophy that came with the award, a feeling I can totally identify with when my run away B division win in the East Berks Scrabble Club league went totally unnoticed by the national press.
Anyway to the games. I felt that in order to give James the greatest chance of temporary greatness we should plumb for one of his favourites. I'd asked earlier in the week what his top 5 games were and Lords of Waterdeep came in at number one. Never a hard sell for the Bracknell trio it was unboxed and set up. During its course each player took a turn at extending a lead only to be dragged back. Paul had established himself as the keeper of the useful buildings, James had spotted and completed some beneficial Plot Quests and I had elected (Against my better judgement) to take the extra man in the lieutenant.
Approaching the last two rounds James had opened up a decent, unassailable looking, lead of around 30 points. On the final turn I performed on the surface what looked like a total bastard move. I could see Paul needed warriors to complete a massive 25 point quest and I took them just to stop him. Next up was the completion of my own heavy hitting quest. That done I was still left with around 10 points to gain with two agents to place. James, out of adventurers, was left claiming extra pieces to bolster his score as it looked to all around the table that my chance had gone. I was left with 3 warriors and 1 cleric and scant few options on the board to choose with all available quests way too expensive to finish.
With a final roll of the dice, which are not included or even part of this game, I elected to reset the quests and hoped that one would arrive that I could complete. It did. 8 points after nabbing an extra cleric. James took it on the chin as the final count up of completed quests and money etc revealed my narrowish win.
Chris - 180
James - 168
Paul - 144
At this point credit should be extended to Paul who mentioned to me on the drive to the station that he had a mandatory quest in his intrigue cards. He decided not to play kingmaker and let James and I battle it out. He said he was sorely tempted after my blocking move, but as I pointed out, if I hadn't taken those resources I couldn't have completed that last quest!!
Then with 45 minutes left we choose to take a run at Paul's nemesis 7 Wonders. Every time we have played this Paul has spent the bulk of the game scratching his head and saying things like "I really don't know what I'm supposed to be doing". Only this time he thought he didn't but he did winning comfortably with best military and most useful guilds...
Paul - 43
Chris - 37
James - 33
And for you palace watchers out there, I had it.
Not sure what this does to the final table but I'm pretty sure it leaves the winners of each category intact and James doesn't have to worry about a trophy he's not getting.