It was August in Pandemic Legacy

Got in some quick games with Justin and Halen on Thursday of my birthday week.  The main event was a big win in Pandemic Legacy (which we hadn’t played since November I think).  We also got in some quick games of Sherlock 13 and The Grizzled.

We had to complete 3 objectives to get an August win in Pandemic Legacy, and one of those had to be curing 3 diseases. There were about 5 other options including 2 search missions and having a military base in each of 6 world regions.  From the start, we already had 6 military bases, so that was 1 down.

Our next objective was a search mission.  We decided to focus on getting the virologist first as that was the first to come up and would give us a new useful character to fight a mostly unstoppable disease. At this point, it is mostly only possible to slow it down with quarantines, blockades, and basically killing zombie like people with the disease. We had a lucky start with Justin able to discard a card of the matching color to search and Halen able to do 2 searches. Along with some bonuses for certain search conditions, that gave us another objective complete in the first round but also a first epidemic in the same round.

The final mandatory mission involved a lot of trading information between players and luck of the draw, but we were able to hold things together long enough to get the cards and cure the diseases. I played the scientist, who is able to cure a disease with only 4 cards of a color, and Halen was the researcher making exchange of information easier.  I cured the red disease early on and a few rounds later Halen and I both had the cards to stop yellow then blue consecutively in a single last round.

The biggest struggle we faced this time around was holding back outbreaks in the untreatable disease zone.  Justin had the soldier who has the ability to stay in a city with a faded figures without getting a scar.  He was able to hold back the outbreaks a little with strategic quarantines by moving in and out of cities with 3 faded figures next to each other.  We also got a new ability that allowed us to trade a scar for a turn with no infections which we used quite liberally this game.  With the new virologist, the faded figures should be less of a problem next time hopefully. We also probably should have used the colonel instead of the soldier (…) because the colonel had an additional upgrade that removed faded figures by just leaving a city.  Could have knocked them out by just moving through.  Oh well. We won at some cost and have hope for September when we will hopefully get the immunologist.

Next came a game of Sherlock 13 with some alternate rules.  Justin recommended a rule where the cards get rotated in a way that allows players to give less complete answers making deduction more challenging and uncertain. It was interesting, but we decided the Grizzled would be a better use of our short time.

So far our group only has 1 win against the box in the Grizzled game on record.  Justin added the expansion rules, but they don’t change the feel or strategy of the
game much.  The Grizzled is still a fight against the inevitable in the horror of war.  It is about a slim chance at survival but not getting out undamaged even with a win.  We played 2 losing games.  The first was a quick loss. We were less than lucky and the cards worked against survival after just 2 missions ending with a lost mission and Halen with 6 hard knocks.  The 2nd game went longer but didn’t progress toward getting rid of enough cards in missions to get out of the war zone alive.  We took one final chance with all the remaining cards but went out in a blaze of glory.  That’s war.

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.

Pandemic Legacy Win and Loss

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Justin, Halen, and Evan played the 2nd game set in June and the 1st game set in July on November 19th, 2016.  Justin played using a military unit with the ability to get rid of faded figures. After losing the quarantine expert last game, Justin’s military unit was necessary slow down the spread of the disease with quarantines and removing faded figures with his special ability.  Justin took care of this untreatable problem while Halen as the dispatcher and Evan as the medic dealt with the other diseases.  Halen had the ability to use cards for travel without having to discard them which was very useful.  She also had a relationship with the military unit played by Justin which gave an advantage for sharing information and finding cures more easily.  Evan’s doctor was able to predict the spread of diseases and treat disease outbreaks more easily.

Unfortunately, the game set in June ended in a loss because there were too many outbreaks in a short time between cities with faded figures.  The players were focused on finding a cure and let the faded figures get out of control quickly.  The one good point of the June loss was the addition of another military base which allowed the players to move around the globe more easily.

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June was a loss, but the players were able to get a win in July the first time around.  There was a new option to search for another strong character as another objective, but the players just focused on curing 3 diseases (mandatory for a win) and the quarantine objective.  Three objectives were needed to win, but one of those was having 1 military base in each of the 6 areas.  That was already complete from the beginning and was one less thing to think about.  The strategy was effective this time around.  Nothing got out of control.  Another research center was also added to give more options for curing diseases and more starting positions for the beginning of a game.

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The 3 completed objectives were eradicate at least 1 disease (yellow eradicated by the medic), have a military base in each of the 6 major regions of the world (already complete, actually have 7), and discover cures to the 3 normal diseases (mandatory objective).  We didn’t complete the search, but that may be possible in a future game.

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Justin was able to keep the faded figures in check and share information with Halen with their characters’ special relationship.  Evan was mostly just playing clean up.  The 2 upgrades the players chose were keeping the research center (after losing Atlanta and having 1 in the middle of the faded figure area not really accessible for most players).  Justin’s character also gained 2 upgrades in the 2 games.  He got Local Pressure and Paramilitary Escort upgrades shown in the picture below.  Both make dealing with faded figures more possible.

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All Manners of Codenames in the Mix

There are 2 new versions of Codenames to play around with.  Codenames: Pictures is what it sounds like.  It uses black and white pictures with mixed imagery instead of words the rest of the rules remain the same.  The other new version is Codenames: Deep Undercover.  That one uses words but ones that are commonly used in euphemisms and more adult innuendo.  All versions of Codenames seem simple enough, but each can be enjoyed on its own anytime or mixed and matched in a single game.  There will actually be a Codenames Tournament to raise money for the Yangsan Orphanage with copies of the game as prizes.

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We had games of all of the above on Saturday, October 29th for the game day hosted by Bruce and Ginger in their fine apartment.  The first game of Codenames started out with Deep Undercover for a round then changed to a mix of original Codenames and Codenames: Pictures.  Katie and Aaren won 2 rounds to Justin and Halen’s 1 round.  The last round finished with the assassin coming out.

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Another group played Codenames starting with 4 rounds of Deep Undercover.  The team of Jeremy, Daniel, and Jenna were practicing for the tournament versus a team including Matt, Justyna, Ksenia, and Evan.  The practicing team won 3 rounds to 1, but each round was pretty close.  It also ended up being educational for some unfamiliar with English innuendo.

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The same groups played once more using Pictures.  The rounds continued to be quite close.  Out of 3 rounds team Ksenia, Justyna, Evan, and Matt won 2 over the practicing team of Jeremy, Jenna, and Daniel.

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I will also mention a game of Thurn and Taxis Power and Glory here.  Halen, Aaren, Katie, and Justin played with Halen winning.  Halen got 23 points to win.

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While Codenames took up a lot of time and attention, the big long game of the day  was Dead of Winter: A Crossroads Game.  Bruce, Ginger, Ronnie, Kate, and Jef all played for the first time.  It is Evan’s game, but he was playing Codenames so was only able to advise while the group attempted to learn and play the game.  The final result was quite close, but the Box won.  The mission was to kill a certain number of zombies in 5 rounds, and they fell one short.  There was also an attempted betrayal by Ginger as her secret mission was to help the downfall of the group. However, she was also unsuccessful.  There were no winners here as is the case in most zombie movies.  Appropriate.

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July 16th, 2016 Game Day: Miscellaneous Practice/Short/Filler Games

There were a lot of little fillers between big games with no real score to record but some challenges and fun worth mentioning for this game day.

There were some rounds of Concept with no final result starting with just Aaren, Justin, Evan, and Jeremy G then later including Daniel and Jenna to start the day of games.  Almost no success, but I think before we finished Jenna, Aaren, and Justin finally had 2 points to Daniel, Evan, and Jeremy G’s one point.  Not a full game but some challenging communication.

There were some learning games of Tichu with Katie, Justyna, Ksenia, and Ginger followed by a second learning game with for Justyna and Ksenia but paired with Halen and Justin.  There are no results to record but good games anyway.

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There was some Codenames using Dixit cards successfully for 2 rounds.  Justin gave clues with pictures and Jenna as well.  We played with no teams against the Box at that point with Evan, Jeremy G, and Daniel as well. Later they switched to words for a single round of team play Evan and Daniel versus Jenna and Jeremy G before Evan had to return to his wife and daughter.  Evan and Daniel beat Jenna and Jeremy G in that round by a narrow margin and some risky calls.

One round of Spyfall was also played in which Ronnie revealed herself as the spy before she could be caught but failed to guess the location leading to a win by Aaren, Kate, Emy, Daniel, Jeremy G, and Jenna.  However, it was a single round.

Finally, Halen, Justin, Daniel, Jenna, and Aaren played some rounds of Mafia de Cuba. An enjoyable but short game with no results to record. The last game of the night when all the other players had left.

 

Pandemic

2016-06-25 16.48.34Katie taught this cooperative game to Ronnie, Emmy, and Kate.  This was Emmy and Kate’s first time joining the group.  This group also started out with a win against the box.  They played an intro game with 4 epidemics in the deck.  They didn’t wipe out any diseases in the process but did cure all 4 of them.

Pandemic Legacy

2016-05-21-23.13.54A hard fought battle for the first game set in June but a loss to the Box once again.  This loss tragically saw the first death of a player character.  We lost Jackie Brown the quarantine expert as she got 2 more scars during this single game.  She got one by starting a turn in a city with a faded person (the result of an untreatable disease that can only be quarantined).  The 2nd scar came from being in a city in the middle of an outbreak.  This 2nd scar would be the 3rd for the character total as she already had 1.  The end result was losing the game by having too many outbreaks and the death of Jackie Brown. The only good result is that next game our funding goes back up to 6, and that we now have 6 military bases at the start of the game giving us one less task to complete in game.

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The Grizzled

The 2nd attempt and desire for a third, but we decided not to continue.  This time we lost due to having too many traumas in front of one player.  Hard knocks built up on more than one player and couldn’t be removed in time by support.

The Grizzled

This cooperative game is as addictive as it is difficult.  It leaves one wanting to try again and win this time, but that didn’t happen April 30th, 2016.  We played 2 games and lost both.  The first game ended by depleting the cards covering the gravestone.  Winning must be possible! The question is how much suffering can these characters go through, and how many wins do we give the box before giving up?

Pandemic Legacy

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Finally a win. The end of May brought an end to the losing streak that started in April with the addition of the faded disease carriers. There is now a way to fight them using the new character Mark “the Yurinator” Jackson, and we had enough funding and the strategy to succeed completing 3 objectives.  We cured 3 diseases, eradicated 1, and set up military bases in each of the 6 regions. Hopefully, that continues in the next games. This game was won by Justin, Halen, and visiting player Yuriy on March 24th, 2016.