This was my fourth play in 4 days and the game - whilst still being basic on the rules - showed a little more of itself again. There was a tension over the ending: Andrew had the wherewithal to finish the game but because I didn’t, he bided his time and picked up a few points. Should I gear up for the raid myself, or kill off my crew? The problem with the latter is that would leave Andrew free too take as much time as he wanted. But as soon as I had the potential to raid, he carried out the final bit of pillaging himself, and I realised I might have been able to stymie him with more careful viking-management… my earlier raiding had me far ahead on the scoretrack, but Andrew’s final raid combined with his offerings to the chief saw him nab the victory!
With Raiders wrapped up we set up Flamme Rouge. Andrew shot out in front early doors and I was forced to play high cards just to keep up with him. I kept my rouler in front of my sprinter for as long as possible, and did wonder - again - whether he had enough cards to make it over the line. But he did - after the final hill both my guys made a break for it - the sprinter pulling off a convincing win with my knackered rouler with enough in they tank to claim second:
Sam - wins
Andrew - doesn’t
Andrew had also requested I bring 7 Wonders, so we set up the three player (the third player is Dirk) where you take turns to play Dirk’s hand for him. The early signs weren’t good for me when I kept getting the rules wrong, and I made an early decision to go for sciences. But I only had resources in the form of stone and logs, and scientists can’t do all that much with that. I did manage to chain several cards together to build a decent score, but struggled to do anything else, and Andrew ended the game cash and resources rich, with the most military, some guilds… at least I beat Dirk.
We ended on Biblios - not exactly a banker for me, but a game I have a decent pedigree in. But Andrew completely trounced me - he’s Mr Biblios! - and walked away with a convincing win.
It was almost as if I had entered the episode over-confident of my own success, and a softly-spoken man had taken me by surprise.