Monday, 12 May 2014

Do have a macao

On Friday I tempted Andrew over for a game. If that sounds like the candles and incense were lit it's not that far off - I promised him a lift home.

As we were starting quite late courtesy of some boisterous boys, and Andrew had said he didn't mind what we played, I took the liberty of setting up Macao.

Haven't played Macao? This is a bit like the black sheep of the Stefan Feld family, the dud he allegedly churned out whilst gearing up to the highly-rated Luna and Castles of Burgundy. Except that 1. anyone who thinks this is Feld's black sheep hasn't played Rum and Pirates, and 2. it's rather good when the planets align. By that I mean I've played a game where we never really got going, and I've played a game that took about six hours to complete, which is too long. But I've also had several - usually 2 player, but one or two with 3 people - where it really hit the spot.

Friday was one of those times. Andrew strode in, took off his coat and picked up his first card - we were off. Haven't played Macao? Well there's a bit of grabbing and delivering goods, a bit of generating gold and a bit of chaining cards. And best of all there's the wheel; a wheel that spins between rounds to a new segment that you have previously populated with a number of cubes. Plan well and with a bit of luck you have the right combo of cubes to activate your cards. Don't plan well and you'll be saying "What the hell shall I do with this green cube? Oh God. I'll move my boat"

And so on. Your activated cards get you goodies, but there's a balance to be struck between easy-to-activate cards that don't do much and harder-to-activate cards that do. I erred toward the former, but having got a great presence in the city quarters with an end-game-multiplier that scored city quarters, thought I was in like Flynn.

But I was in like Edward G Robinson - Andrew had worked wonders with his better cards and got enough endgame bonuses to catapult him 10 points ahead of me in the final reckoning:

Andrew 88
Sam 78

Great game - and over in 80 minutes.

Andrew still had some beer to drink and I was up for another game, so I didn't blanche when proposed Biblios. Everytime this game is played in GNN World the Mr Biblios title (or Mrs/Miss/Ms) is up for grabs. And again I thought I'd done it when I had a pocketful of gold with several cards to come in the auction. If just one of them was an orange, I was in like Flynn...

Andrew 7 (wins on colours)
Edward G Robinson 7 (loses on colours)

And so another wonderful GNN appendage comes to a close. Til tomorrow...

all pics courtesy of lovely BGG folk


  1. A loss on colours! Harsh. Although a win against Mr Biblios is like an international footy side winning in the Maracana!

  2. But I'm not Mr Biblios now. Andrew is :-(