For a long time TT was my favourite game. I'm not sure I even have such a thing any more, but it remains a classic to me. Andrew was designated starting player, and he established a 4 point lead in the first round - a lead I thought was catchable, but I was to be proved wrong. Andrew played the game like a master, knowing exactly when to adit and when to sell a pastie. It was all Ian and I could do to stay on his trail, and Ian's fight for second place deflated when he tried to force up the auction price in the last round, and was left with the soggiest mine in Bodmin Moor.
A very damp Cornwall
My grand plan to have a shedload of cheap stuff to mine in round four didn't quite pan out, as Andrew had done exactly the same thing. Although I managed to get an extra £5, it wasn't enough to catch him:
The night was still young, so we perused the cupboard and went with one of last year's hits, Istanbul. Andrew announced before we even started that he would finish last, as he had 'no mojo' with the game. He was as good as his word, as Ian and I surged to a 3 gems apiece with Andrew stuck back on one.
The guard outside the police station
We'd set up the board in the 'fast' layout, and I found it was so streamlined I didn't even have to travel west. I spent the whole game on the eastern end of the board, shuffling around the Tea House and making money. It was enough to secure the win:
Sam 5 gems
Ian 3 gems
Andrew 1 gem
I'd mooted Take It Easy but as we'd now gone past ten pm and Andrew and Ian - in a kind of forlorn competition - both claimed they always came last at it, we elected to go with Love Letter instead. I volunteered that I always came last at that, which is to my memory reasonably accurate. This time though the game turned on its head: after Ian won the first round, Andrew won the next two rounds and it looked like I would be, at most, an unwilling kingmaker. But thanks to a large portion of luck I got back in the game, winning three rounds in succession to claim an unlikely win:
Sam 3 cubes
Andrew 2 cubes
Ian 1 cube
Eleven o'clock wasn't far off so we decided to finish with Timeline. I got a nice easy set of cards, and noted at the outset that the formation of the Knights Templar was probably before the final crusade. But having got the latter down, when placing the former I completely ignored the events on the cards and only looked at the numbers, guessing incorrectly that it came later! What a fool! Andrew profited from my idiocy with his Cleopatra-Pompeii one-two and took the first game:
Andrew - no cards
Sam - one card
Ian - two cards
It had all happened so quickly, we played again. I confess I got another easy set - having got rid of the invention of glasses and some other card that now escapes me, I had the simple task of getting shot of Australopithecus (which despite being 4 million years out, I succeeded in dumping) and the invention of the wheel. Ian had a chance to claim a joint victory, but he couldn't quite nail the discovery of anaesthetics (or something).
Sam - no cards
Ian - one card
Andrew - one card