Thursday, 30 January 2014

James gamer on!

The title of this post follows on from Andrews director based pun heading and like his this one has very little to do with the evening itself. Hectic preparations proceeded last nights event where the venue was switched to James' house and I had an After School Club committee meeting to attend before collecting Ashton, picking up Paul from the station, eating dinner, bathing kids and putting them to bed.

Alhambra was the first of our cardboard based treats, carried over from last weeks selection. Additional games drawn were Industry and Carcasonne. Industry was deemed to long to play after Alhambra so it was left until next time.

I made myself promise that I wouldn't block myself in when building my town this time. Due to the nature of the tile design this quite difficult to do. The type of building you're chasing nearly always has a wall facing the wrong way or conversely the piece you really want is on yellow money and you have a fist full of greens.

Paul made the early running with an impressive long wall in the first scoring round. I was being partly successful in keeping my complex open and when it wasn't I had Paul to remind me (politely) I was stuffing it up.

Then a shift in play occurred (unnoticed by all) where James emerged from second place to post a useful lead going into the final act. His tussle with Paul over the most towers proved decisive as the final scores show.

James - 151
Paul - 137
Chris -129

Next up was Carcasonne but instead of my boring old original copy out came James' winter themed gingerbread version. That's right you heard me. The game is essentially the same with one variation, the gingerbread man piece. This little guy hangs around in partially completed cities waiting for one of the six additional specially marked tiles to appear. Once drawn he is off, scoring points for the person in control of that city, and jumping into another unfinished one. There were a few other changes as well in that there are a few more cloisters and more roads than cities. 

I decided early on to try and monopolise the farm land spaces which was going well until the others cottoned on and started challenging by using clever placement of tiles. Damn them. In the end James' adventurous decision to build a big city paid off and scored a big 22 points with his penultimate tile.

James - 118
Chris - 108
Paul - 66


  1. So the next blog entry will have to be called Sam Ra me! Forgive me.

    I love Alhambra. Carcassonne, not so much. To be fair, I haven't played with the gingerbread expansion. Is this real? Am I really saying these words?

  2. Carcassonne is a very social game for me. Light and you can almost slip out of a competitive frame of mind if everybody starts looking helpfully for the best place to put the tiles. Yes this special edition really exists..... Although there are about 20 versions of the game as you know....

  3. I've always liked good old basic Carcassonne. So when I saw this Winter Edition for just £13 on Amazon, I snatched it up. Thoughts of one day playing it against my son, maybe. But yep, the gingerbread man is a ginger meeple. I think he's based on a true story....

  4. Yes I think it even says in the rules to Carc "draw a tile, show to everyone and together decide where to put it"; I'm paraphrasing, but it was my intro to new games, and it was a revelation.