Friday, 5 December 2014

Hit for six

You would think that after a three-day weekend and a Tuesday of serious gaming, that Thursday evening would be part of the recovery before plunging headfirst once again into the maelstrom that is th GNN form table. But you’d be wrong. Ian, Sam and I cannot resist the smell of a rule book, the touch of a tiny wooden cube or the inimitable snap of a winning card being played on the table.

I arrived at ten to eight, and Quantum was already half open, so it seemed like the obvious choice. For Ian and Sam, that is. I haven’t played in a while, and my rustiness showed. They flew around with their dominance and their cards, while I had nothing but the luck of the dice and a steely determination to keep me going. That's how real heroes fight a space war!

Even so, it was an epic battle. Ian was wiped off the board completely at one point and I think both Sam and I were both down to out last plucky die during the game.

A lot of the time was spent trying to stop whoever looked to be in the lead, but Sam’s unlikely collection of 1s, 2s, and a 5, and his command cards, including Cunning (use a free action twice) and Relentless (use a move/attack action twice) meant he was able to swoop in and place his final cube while I was on the toilet. That is, so it seems, how real heroes lose a space war.

Sam 0 cubes left
Ian 1 cube left
Andrew 3 cubes left

So next, we broke out Alhambra. It was new to Ian, but he got a quick run the the rules, and there aren't that many, and we were awaaay! My Alhambra was the most balanced, with Sam and Ian boxing themselves in with early walls, but it was close. After the second round of scoring, we were all adjacent on the score track.

In the third round, though, I focused on my favourite buildings, and fluked a couple of second places that got me higher points than those who tied for first (we played house rules. Not official, but much more fun). Sam, though, continued his reign as king of walls, so he just squeaked ahead of me.

Sam 143
Andrew 142
Ian 126

Then Sam decided that was it for the evening, although it was barely past 10 o’clock. I went for a last visit to the loo before my journey out but, by the time I came back, things had changed. Ian was taking off his scarf and coat, and there was a pile of short games on the table to chose from.

We went for Love Letter, deciding it was slightly shorter than Raj or Timeline, apparently still under the impression that the evening was about to end soon. But the whiskey was brought down from the high shelf, and that changed everything.

What happened in the game? Not sure. Anyone with a princess early got found out soon enough, and Ian played his cards better than anyone else. That’s about as much as I can remember.

Ian 3
Sam 2
Andrew 0

And with the whiskey coursing through our veins, we brought down 7 Wonders. Sam’s logic was that it was that we were going to play another short game and this was the difference between going home at 11.00 and 11.10pm.

Ignoring my alcohol-fuelled mistake of building a resource that I already had, I went for sciences early, which was enough to scare Sam into thinking I’d walked it, but with no military or blue buildings, it wasn’t enough, Thinking back, there was one card I could’ve played instead of using it to build part of my wonder, but that would have got me maybe enough to scrape into third. I was also banking on Ian’s and Sam’s military expansion canceling each other out, for the maximum possible cost. It wasn’t to be. Sam’s blue buildings and three guilds for Ian helped them pass me in the final count.

Sam 62
Ian 51
Andrew 49

But we still had whiskey in our glasses! Enough time, then, for one more game. We went back to Love Letter. This time I was drunk enough to bypass my usual reticence. Also, I didn’t get the princess. I don’t remember being particularly clever or cunning, but I did enough to nab my first win of the evening.

Andrew 3
Ian 2
Sam 1

Finally, in the kind of logic that says “I’m already standing with my head in a noose, I may as well jump off the chair,” we decided on more game to end the evening. And it was Biblios. And what an odd Biblios it was. Church cards came out at the start, depressing blues and browns. I went for greens and oranges, and managed to get both. Sam successfully won reds, along with the cheap browns and blues while Ian found himself squeezed out of everything.

Andrew 7
Sam 6
Ian 0

So I managed to end with two wins! Thanks goodness. After the three of us reset our scores with six games in an evening, the form table remains remarkably unchanged.

Katy 1 3 2 2 1 9
Martin 2 2 1 3 1 9
Jon 2 2 2 2 1 9
Sam 2 3 1 2 1 9
Andrew 1 1 3 3 2 10
Andy 2 2 3 2 1 10
Matt 4 1 2 1 2 10
Ian 3 2 2 1 3 11
Hannah 3 3 2 2 2 12
Joe 2 1 3 3 4 13
Chris 2 5 1 1 4 13
Anja 2 1 1 5 5 14
Adam 3 2 2 4 4 15
Steve 3 3 5 1 3 15
Stanley 3 2 4 1 5 15


  1. Meanwhile Joe and I got together for some non-leader board 2p action at Roll for the Soul. One of us might blog later, but we had another great game of Wir Sind das Volk, which played completely differently from our first and ended surprisingly quickly. That left time to see how Potato Man works 2p (answer: excellently!) and then for me to destroy Joe at Khmer. To be fair, the fact that he forgot to order food until the kitchen was closed may have played a role...

  2. I had totally forgotten we played 7 Wonders. Andrew's science looked mighty but his civilization spent so much time in the lab they forgot to paint anything blue. Or red.

    Biblios was mad - I ended up with blue and browns which were the dice I'd actually depreciated with my church cards. I was after reds but after getting off to a good start I came to a halt on them. But Andrew must have chucked some away because that was enough to get them - but not enough to win!

    Lovely evening, thank you gents.