Longer Games

The longer or more involved games for March 11th included Star Trek Catan, Ticket to Ride Europe, Champions of Midgard, Mottainai, Deus, and Scythe.

Bridget, Ryan, Mia, and Ksenia played both Star Trek Catan and Ticket to Ride Europe.  They were at least mostly familiar with Catan, so I explained the minor changes in the Star Trek theme, and they were able to play with only a few questions as the game progressed.  Ksenia ended the game as the winner with 10 points.

They moved on to Ticket to Ride Europe but none of them had played before, so I gave a quick tutorial, and they had a couple questions as they played. They were able to figure things out for the most part and ended with respectable scores for their first time play.  Ryan won with 127 points.

Sometime in the middle of that Jeremy and Aaren were playing Mottainai and Jump Drive both with Aaren learning the games for the first time and Jeremy explaining.  I told Aaren that Mottainai is a simplified version of Glory to Rome which seemed to make the game play clear.  They played a longer game with Jeremy winning with one final megaturn.

Justin (with Halen as a partner) explained Champions of Midgard to Sam, Daniel, and I for another video that ended because of a low battery.  The explanation and play went well, but at that point there was too much background noise, so the result was not great.  The game is a worker placement that includes rolling dice and battling monsters. The dice are warriors that also need to be fed if taken on long journeys.  Points and money to spend on things can be gained through battle.  There are also varying abilities for the players including the pious, the swordsmaiden, the berserker, and the destined. I ended up winning the game with 81 points, using the swordsmaiden, followed by the teaching team of Justin and Halen at 64 points playing the pious.  I was happy with the result and could probably work more on strategy next time.

Justin, Halen, Sam, and I continued on to a game of Deus. Sam was the only first time player although I had only played once before and didn’t remember the exact rules of play before reminders.  Halen killed us all with a score of 47.  Justin and I had scores in the 30s at the end. We ended slightly prematurely as Sam had to take off in the final turn.  The end result probably wouldn’t have changed much though.  Sacrificing to gods and building up a good engine takes pretty good strategic planning along with the luck to get the right cards together.  Halen definitely had all that going.

The last game that I saw going was a big game of Scythe with Jeremy, Justyna, Daniel, Jenna, and Aaren playing and Injae observing the game and cursing Jeremy while supporting Justyna.  This led to a 2nd place finish for Jeremy with 68 points and a win by Justyna with 72.

Finally, Jeremy, Jenna, and Daniel played their extreme coop Codenames and a game of Mottainai.  Jeremy pulled off another Mottainai win with 26 points which is a better end to the day than the double loss to the Box in Codenames.

Party and Deduction

Yangsan Gamerz got together March 11, 2017 at Cafe Swan Valley again.  This post will focus on the social deduction games, simple card games, and party games.  That included Jump Drive, Secret Hitler, Red 7, Parade, Spyfall, FitzIt, Toc Toc Woodman, and Codenames.

First game for this post and for the day was a 4 player game of Jump Drive which was also our first trial at doing a tutorial video and playthrough which can be found here. The video was not a complete success, but it was a good first attempt.  Next time, I can do better with more planning, better video, etc.  Jeremy won the game with 73 points followed by myself with 68 even though it was a first play for both of us.  Justin taught the game, and Halen played and gave some helpful hints.

Secret Hitler came next with another video attempt but less successful with some sound issues, stopping and restarting the game a bit, and the video being frozen by a phone call coming in.  This social deduction game played between liberals and fascists trying to keep the most control of policy, fascists to elect their Secret Hitler as chancellor, or liberals to successfully find and do away with that Secret Hitler in order to win for their side.

We played twice.  Ksenia, Sam, Halen, Justin, Jeremy, Mia, Bridget, Ryan, and I played.  The first game was a close match in policy passing, but liberals finally won by killing Sam Hitler giving Halen, Justin, Jeremy, Bridget, and Ryan a win (although Ryan was killed for being suspicious as well). The 2nd game the fascists won and got away with offing 2 liberals in Ksenia and Jeremy.  They passed enough policies to win giving Justin, Bridget, Ryan (Hitler), and I the win.

 

While Secret Hitler was happening more players arrived and started up a game of Red 7 which was interrupted by more players. Finally, they played Parade twice, Spyfall, and FitzIt.  The first game of Parade was a win by Emy with only -1 over Kate, Tricia, Justyna, Aaren, Injae, and Changyeon.  The 2nd was a win by Emy again with a perfect -7 points versus the same players and Aaren dropping out when they realized 7 players was over the limit.

Spyfall appears to have been 7 rounds long but with no overall scoring or winner.  The players were Emy, Kate, Justyna, Injae, Tricia, Changyeon, and Jenna joined in the 4th round. The first round had no spy, so the game had to be started again. A loss by Injae as spy in the 2nd round. The 3rd was a win from Injae as spy for 4 points as he was able to find the location. The 4th a loss by Emy playing the spy accused by Injae. A win for Jenna as spy in the 5th when the wrong person was accused. Another loss for Emy as spy being found out by Jenna in the 6th. Then the 7th and final round with Jenna losing as spy. There was no real way to deduce a final winner, so these are just on record with no score.

Jeremy and Aaren played a couple of 2 player games.  The one to record here is Jump Drive.  The 2 games of Jump Drive were both wins for Jeremy with 57 points and 67 points.

Tricia, Jenna, Changyeon, Justyna, Injae, Kate, and Emy also played FitzIt for the first time (a first play for the group).  The game is a race to get rid of a player’s pile of cards before everyone else by placing them into a crossword style grid. The key is thinking of items that fit all descriptions in a line without repeating items. There are also ways to give away cards to other players by playing sets of 4 or 5 cards or adding cards to a line that already contains 4 cards.  Jenna won one game. Injae won the 2nd time.  The list of words left behind was worth recording below:

Another quick game of FitzIt occurred between Justin, Halen, and I. Justin won, and we didn’t have a very creative game compared to the other group.

Ryan, Bridget, Ksenia, and Miae played some Toc Toc Woodman after a couple of other longer games but no scores were recorded. They just played for the joy of the game.

Jeremy, Daniel, and Jenna played some coop Codenames with no good results giving the Box 2 wins.

February 11th Part Two

We turned to longer and more serious gaming next with Jeremy’s Tyrants of the Underdark and A Feast for Odin. There was still space for some light games however with Codenames, Boss Monster, and Justyna’s copy of King of Tokyo.

We played Tyrants of the Underdark with Jeremy introducing the game to 5 new players. It is a 4 player deck building and area control game in the DnD world using the Drow or dark elves  battling and building up forces.  Mia and James were pretty new to games, so Mia teamed up with Jenna, and James teamed up with Sam who ended up leaving midway through the game leaving just James. Evan and Jeremy played individually.  It was a quick somewhat low scoring game as James was able to bring his forces to the board using good deployment cards. Once his troops were all in play the game ended quickly, and we added up the scores with Jenna and Mia taking the win with 96 points followed closely by the other players except for the cursed teacher of the game.

I didn’t get any pictures of Codenames, Boss Monster, or King of Tokyo.  Codenames went for 3 rounds with teams of 3 on 3.  Justyna, Sarah, and Changyeon versus Tricia, Katie, and Injae.  Tricia, Katie, and Injae won the first round of play, but Justyna, Sarah, and Changyeon one the next 2 rounds showing great teamwork.

Boss Monster came with Anthony T I think. The game is about making a dungeon that will attract and kill off more heroes before the other monsters. The first player to 10 kills without death by wounds is the winner. This time Emy won with 10 souls versus Ronnie, Anthony, and Kate.

King of Tokyo hit the table with Justyna, Sarah, Injae, Tricia, and Changyeon playing.  Justyna ended up winning I think by knocking everyone else out, but I am not sure of that.

Justin showed Ronnie and Daniel how to play A Feast for Odin. Both of them were quite keen on the Odin theme. It was their first time playing a heavy Worker Placement game with a lot of choices. This game in particular gives player around 60 choices at the start of the round. Justin stuck around and gave strategy tips for them. Daniel took the win but Ronnie wasn’t too far behind.

The final games of the night were Betrayal at House on the Hill and Pandemic Iberia.  Betrayal for one looked to be a very entertaining story of aliens and synchronized swimming.  The players were a team of Injae and Justyna, Anthony, Sarah, Emy, Katie, and Kate.


The players were locked in a house and had to attempt many skills to get out.  After many attempts at the tricks they failed to escape.  One particular task was synchronized swimming somehow. Injae/Justyna ended up being the betrayer character who was Doctor Frank N. Sense’s assistant.  They summoned monsters to make completing tasks and skills more difficult for the other players, and time ran out. The house turned into a big rocket and flew to another planet where aliens did strange experiments on all of them.  The end.

The last game at Swan Valley was Pandemic Iberia with Evan, Anthony, Sara and Justin. Other players had taken off at that point for dinner.  The game has different roles from the original Pandemic based on new mechanics appropriate to the earlier time period. Rail laying is essential in moving around the board even as the map is so much smaller.  Players can also move over water.  Another possible move is purifying water in order to hold off infection for a quadrant of the board.   There was an early misplay on the first turn that caused an outbreak which might have cost the the game. Play continued intelligently and strategically after that with good cooperation.  However, the last epidemic came, and though the players were on the verge of winning on the very next turn, the cards drawn created several more outbreaks which ended the game in a loss. All in all, there were some great strategic moves despite the lack of success. These ideas will help players make better decisions the next time. Such a tight game!

Such a great day of games! See everyone next time!

February 11th Part One

For February 11th, 2017 we played at Cafe Swan Valley.  This ended up being a great location for games with several good size tables and a very generous owner.  Not to mention the food was great and prices reasonable. We will definitely play here again in the future I think.

The first sets of games included Parade, That’s It, and Sherlock 13.  Evan introduced his game, Parade to all the players more than once as more players arrived during set up and explanations.  The first game was with Tricia, Justyna, Injae, Sarah, Changyeon, and Evan.  Evan and Tricia tied at -12 to win.  The game is won by the person with the fewest negative points.  The scores were all close, and the players picked up on the rules quickly.  The 2nd game had the addition of Daniel to the game and Tricia and Changyeon teamed up.  This time Sarah won with a very high score of -4 followed by Evan with -10.  The negatives got a bit bigger this time with a more competitive 2nd game strategy.

Played two quick games of Sherlock 13. It was the first time for a few players. James, Mia, and Jeremy were first timers. Jeremy took the first game versus James, Sam, and Justin quite quickly by making a quick guess that was well informed, and so he took that game. The 2nd game was versus Mia, Justin, and Sam.  He made another guess but got it wrong which lead the way for Justin to win.

Ronnie, Kate, Emy, and Anthony played That’s It! for quite awhile, and Ronnie ended up winning that with more cards than other players but an unknown number.  I heard one hint for something that turns your eyes red and a guess at soju which seems reasonable except the game was not made in Korea.

The 2nd batch of short games included Sushi Go Party!, Love Letter Premium, and 7 Wonders Duel.

Sushi Go Party! was a first for all players I believe, but Injae and Evan at least had played the original game.  Daniel, Evan, Sarah, Changyeon, Tricia, Injae, Justyna, and Katie played the first round with Justyna emerging the winner with 42 points, followed by 38 from Daniel, and 36 from Evan. The addition of some new cards and the board in the party version make for welcome new elements to give the game more replay value and interesting variations.  I liked the risk of possibly getting 3 points or nothing for miso if another player also chose that card on the same turn.

The 2nd round was played between Tricia, Changyeon, Injae, Katie, Justyna, and Sarah with higher scores with 6 rather than 8 players.  Tricia won with 65, Changyeon got 2nd with 63, and Injae grabbed 3rd with 56 points.

While the 2nd round of Sushi Go Party! was happening, Evan and Daniel pursued a game of 7 Wonders Duel.  Daniel was very strong in victory points, but we didn’t count them up because Evan won a military victory and was also pretty close to a science one.

Also played love Letter with 6 players including Jenna, Justin, Jeremy, James, Mia, and Sam. A lot of first timers in this won especially with the new roles included in the premium edition. The game does tend to take longer with the added roles. Jenna got ahead quickly and at one point got two tokens with a well timed role of guessing James card when all other players were eliminated which netted her two tokens for the final win.

Finally, Justin tried to introduce Insider to a few players but didn’t end up playing a real recorded game.  This was just a chance for a bunch of people to try the new party deduction word game.

 

Ninjato

20160827_1656282A game of Ninjato played with 2 new players and 2 experienced players.  Justin and Halen explained the game to Sam and Jef.  In the end, the game was very close, but Halen won with exactly 100 points.  The other scores were not recorded.  Sam came in a close second, followed by Justin, and finally Jef.  It looked like everyone had a good time even while learning.  Ninjato has a very enjoyable theme to go along with the worker placement style of play.

The Resistance: Avalon

The 2nd game with new teams.  The same 8 players played again, but this time Justin, Katie, and Sam were the villains.  Halen, Jef, Justyna, Aaren, and Ksenia were good.  Aaren was Merlin.  This time things worked out better for the good side, and they were able to complete their missions and find the villains.

The Resistance: Avalon

20160827_150058The biggest group social deduction game of August 27th, 2016.  8 players played twice in a row.  The first game had new player Sam, Halen, and Ksenia as the baddies being pursued by the good Jef, Justin, Justyna, Katie, and Aaren.  Merlin and pals were not successful this time, so Sam has started his first entry into the board gaming world with a win alongside Halen and Ksenia.  Halen is always a villain in this kind of game, so that doesn’t really come as a surprise though.

Cosmic August

Once again, our group gathered for games on August 27th, 2016.  So far, we have been able to keep the monthly momentum going.  Those gathered to play board games usually number between 12 and 18 at this point.  We had 16 players this time.

Lots of good gaming yesterday! I will record more detailed results later, but for now just the highlights. We got in some Codenames, The Grizzled, Summoner Wars, Catan: Cities and Knights, The Resistance Avalon, Ninjato, Seventh Hero, Cosmic Encounters, Bohnanza, King of Tokyo, and Red7. I don’t think I have had so much fun while not winning once. Thanks Justin Bos, Halen Bak, Aaren Tucker, Anthony Wilborn, Jeremy J. Goard, Bruce, Ginger Park, Justyna Stryjewska, Jef Fej, Sam, Ksen mm, Jenna Jordan, Daniel Cryer, and Katie Orazem for gaming with us this time.

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We also enjoyed some bulgogi together at a nearby restaurant between games.