Sam (and little Joe) 14
Then, with a disappointed Stanley retiring to bed (as gracious a loser as he was a winner last week) the three grown adults decided what game they should play next. We chose Nefertiti, the recent smash hit at GNN. I explained most of the rules to Joe while Sam was off doing other things, and when he came back it was simply a matter of tying up a few loose ends, answering some of Joe’s insightful questions, and we were off!
It was an interesting game. Sam felt it was more confrontational than before, and I noticed that the spread of money seemed to be quite uneven: either you were skint or rich and not much in between. Joe made a move that stretched our interpretation of the rule book. He asked if he could asks us to discard a card of a type that he didn’t have in his hand. We had previously assumed that a player needs to have one of a particular card in his own hand to make other players discard theirs, but the rule book didn’t explicitly say this, and the discussion on BGG seemed to agree with Joe: no need for the player of the discard action to have the card that he wants players to discard.
This move was perhaps enough to get him the win, while my unused royal seals just got me past Sam into second in a very close game.
After this, we considered the next game. Railways of the World: Mexico was suggested, sicne it was still early, but with a phone call expected from one of Joe’s daughters around ten o’clock, we went for the shorter delights of Alhambra.
I like to think that we played it in the spirit it was meant to be played: in tense silence with an occasional Al Pacino impersonation whenever we felt another player was encroaching on our territory. In the end, it was Sam’s walls what won it. Joe’s walls kept him hemmed in for most of round two as he swapped tiles from his reserve.
We felt there was still time for one game, so Las Vegas was brought out, along with a cheese board with crackers with Stilton and a block of Cheddar heavier than a leather-bound Bible, along with an Indian pickle (or chutney, not sure which it was and I forget the name) which was very nice indeed. And Sam reaped the karmic rewards of his generosity with the scores ending as:
Oh, how I regret that last minute double six that knocked me out of a first place and handed a cash reward to Sam in round two. But that’s Las Vegas for you. Cruel, but there’s no arguing with fate. Ah, board games: Every evening with them brings a new moral lesson.
On the form table, Sam closes in on Martin, Joe makes an appearance and not much else happens.
Finally, we also have an Alhambra division, which sees Sam and Paul as the two Goliaths of this game straddling our great nation from Bristol to Croydon.