Eight gamers assembled at Adam and Hannah's for the weekly game fix. At first we considered the tantalising idea of two concurrent games of Railways Of The World, since Joe had brought his copy along with him. But not everyone was sold on the idea, so I suggested Takenoko as the 'other' option in today's gaming multiple choice. Hannah wanted an early night, so she agreed. Andy wanted to see what he'd missed, having been too late to pick it up second hand, and Katy is not a big fan of RotW so we broke away into the other room while Adam, Joe, Matt and Ian set out to find their fortunes on Joe's new Europe map.
We went through the rule book of Takenoko to refresh our memories, and we kept asking ourselves if that's how we played it last time. But once we were on our way, there was no stopping us. Apart from the long pauses whenever Katy rolled a '?' on the die, meaning she could choose the weather. This triggered off lengthy bouts of AP and she admitted she preferred it to when the die made the decision for her.
During this pauses, I popped into the kitchen to see how Europe's railway system was shaping up. Although I was disappointed that Moscow wasn't a red city, I was impressed by Ian and Adam's matching slightly train-driverish hats.
As for Takenoko, Katy triggered the end of the game by playing a gardener card that got her seven points and pushed her into the lead. Andy couldn't catch her, and neither could I. In fact, I only just beat Hannah by the little known tie breaker rule of best-fed panda.
Andrew 25(plus fat panda)
Hannah 25 (not as fat panda)
After this, we went into the kitchen where Hannah inadvertently insulted me by telling Adam she'd lost terribly. I reminded her that she'd only just finished behind me. I guess her standards are higher than mine.
Hannah retired to bed, and my suggestion of us watching the end of RotW was not favourably received so the three of us tried Welcome to the Dungeon. A simple game of chicken, as we tested each others’ steely nerves. At least we would have if we’d been better acquainted with the game. Katy didn’t care for it, and I wasn’t sure what was going on.
In the game, each round has a character (mage, warrior, etc) and their collection of beast-beating equipment. In the bidding round a player either (i) picks up a monster card, looks at it and puts it face down on the dungeon pile; (ii) picks up a monster card but discards it. To do so, a piece of equipment must also be discarded; or (iii) passes and plays not further part in the round. The last player to not pass then enters the dungeon. Each monster card is shown and is killed or takes HP off your character, with the aim of living until the end. First player to successfully got through two dungeons wins.
Katy –1 (ie, one loss)
I’d need to play it again to be sure about it. I didn’t really get to grips with it. Andy seemed better suited and won the game after three rounds.
Finally, RotW had ended. The game was tight and the winner was unexpected: Ian won, for his first ever victory on Railways. A night he will always remember, I expect. The rest of the field were hot on his heels. Adam seemed pleased with the game, though, as he described it with the phrase used as the title of this blog post.
Another lovely night. Although I was surprised to hear that Adam is yet to use his copy of Railways of the World! This situation can’t be allowed to go on. Railways back to the table soon, please.
On the division, Ian’s success sends him from second from bottom to first place: such is the power of a win at RotW.