Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Games are like Amerigo-round.

GNN is like a lucky dip these days: you never know what you’re going to get. One minute Adam shows up unexpected, then Chris can make it over from Bracknell, and today Paul came all the way from London to visit Cardiff and join us in our regular Tuesday games night. And if that weren’t enough, Steve manged to make it over too. Adam was hosting and, with Hannah to tired to join in, we were seven in number: Me, Sam, Matt, Paul, Ian, Adam and Steve.

But before Steve arrived, we indulged in a little Camel Up. This betting game is simplicity itself, which is probably why it appeals so much to us. But this was the first time we’d played it with so many, and that did change the game slightly. Because there was such a long gaps between turns, it seemed like everyone was doing whatever they could except actually move the camels along. If they did this, then they next few players would be in a better position to bet with the new position of the camels. Steve arrived midway through and commented that, for a race, the camels didn’t move much.

Matt 24
Paul 15
Ian 14
Sam 13
Adam 10
Andrew 8

Then we split into two. Like last week, Adam, Matt and myself we sent to the front room while the other group played a game that needed more surface area. We chose Concordia, while Ian, Steve, Paul and Sam took on Amerigo, an epic game whose promises of random maps and a dice tower were enough to convince the newbies to set sail.

In the front room, I explained the rules of Concordia to Adam and we began. It was pretty slow going, and Adam found the cognitive load quite a burden. He said that every new card that was revealed made him want to change his strategy.

Matt’s reputation as the obscure mule was well deserved, as he quietly monopolised wine. I went for brick and cloth cities mostly. In the end, those rolls of blue silk were enough to push me into first.

Andrew 125
Matt 120
Adam 104

With Amerigo nowhere near ending, we went for a game of No Thanks. This was new to Matt, so we explained the rules and then explained them again midway through the game as he didn’t seem to have understood the rule about chaining cards together. He still did okay though.

Matt 43
Adam 67
Andrew 74

Still Amerigo had land untouched by human hand, so we squeezed in a second game. This time I eschewed my usual strategy of low cards and went for higher cards instead. I got a bit of luck with a run of five, and that was enough to give me what I think is my first ever win on No Thanks! (I’ve come joint first before, but this is my first solo victory.)

Andrew 30
Adam 31
Matt 49

And by now Amerigo was over, and multipliers had been totted up. As you might expect from someone with such a strong reputation with long thinky games, Steve came away the winner.

Steve 128
Sam 118
Paul 118
Ian 100

Amazing scenes on the leaderboard, as Joe rises to top spot, even though we haven’t seen him in about two weeks!

Joe 2 2 2 3 3 10
Matt 3 1 2 1 3 10
Sam 2 4 2 1 2 11
Martin 4 2 2 1 2 11
Chris 1 213 5 12
Andrew 1 3 1 6 3 14
Adam 2 2 3 5 2 14
Ian 3 3 4 4 3 17
Paul 2 2 5 5 5 19
Steve 1 5 5 5 5 21
Hannah 2 5 5 5 5 22


  1. Apologies for heckling your first move in Concordia Matt - I thought both you and Adam were new to it.

    It was a slight disappointment not to get a game in (nobody's fault but my own) although I did manage to darn a pair of socks while sitting on the sidelines. I'd like to play Concordia again soon please.

  2. it was a shame you couldn't join us Hannah. I like both Amerigo and Concordia but I think Concordia edges it for me.

    Great Paul and Steve could both make it. Maybe Anja next week...?

  3. Amerigo was fun, though I should have listened to my instincts that told me to move and spread around the board, instead of just building on the islands I had arrived at. It did allow me to race ahead, which made me worry as it's usually a sign I've succumbed to short-termism. And short-termism did indeed rear it's stumpy short head.

  4. Joe's scores seem to total to 12 though :)

  5. Hmm, yes. And they have done for ages. I'll change it next time. If only I could work out how to get excel to do a form table, I'd be much happier.