Its rare for me to get this much gaming in such a short period of time. I have a feeling I better enjoy it since it will come to a screeching halt in January. In the early part of the day I went to a co-workers house to play some games and then later that night I went to Ziggy's Tavern where they have board games every Tuesday.
After a bumpy start we played Blue Moon City. This should have been a fast game but I hadent read the rules or played in a long time so I was a bit rusty in getting it set up and started. This is an interesting game where tiles are placed down on the brown unpainted side to represent a once great city that suffered a catastrophe. The players are rebuilding the city, working together in a way, but ultimately they are trying to gain enough influence that they can make the most offerings the Obelisk at the center and be placed in control of the city.
The game is played with Pawns which are moved around the city, and Cards which are used as a resource to rebuild the city, and as special abilities. The abilities are triggered by discarding the card and range from extra movement, convert cards into wild cards, and move Dragons. The Dragons are helping the players rebuild the city and give the players golden scales for each part of the city they repair in the dragons presence. The scales, once the pool is depleted, are converted to Crystals. When a City Tile is completed it is flipped over and the reward for completing the tile is given out to each player who contributed. The other side of the tile has a bonus that will be given to each adjacent city tile that is completed from her on out.
In the end the player wants to take his Crystals that he gets for completing each city section (with bonuses for adjacent tiles already flipped over) to the center and make an offering to the Obelisk. The first person to do that 4 times wins. I tried a strategy that while I think would have been good, did not work out for me this time around. In the end I lost to a player who is fairly new to the Board Gaming experience. Good game Kyle.
Next we played Eclipse. We knew we were going to have limited time with this one and only after we had gotten into it did we think that we should have played this game First, and then played another if we had time. Oh well....next time we will know better.
After an hour and half of learning the rules and set up, we start playing. I am not going to try to explain the rules of this one....it would take forever and this Blog post would be 5 times longer. Basically you all place different Galactic Empires on the path of conquest.
Very quickly the galaxy starts to get explored. The turns go quickly at first and you don't need to worry to much about to much resource management. Managing your resources (Money, Science, and Materials) you will be able to Explore, Build Ships, Upgrade, Research Technology, and Colonize worlds. Its incredibly complex but plays very smoothly. After 3-4 rounds of exploring we start to run out of money and have to start focusing on other aspects of the game.
With the galaxy's farthest reaches explored, the players turn their attention towards the coveted middle of the board and start building up their forces for the inevitable conflict that will soon begin. The alien worlds that frightened us when we didn't understand how combat worked no longer worried us and they soon fell. Ryan found an alien world with "Shard Hull" that he put on his ships. This gave his ships +3 hull early on. As far as I can tell, that was very broken and let him start marching over the other alien worlds that had more alien tech and valuable resources.
Unfortunately I could not stay to the end of the game and will have to hear about the outcome tomorrow. I had a great time and want to play this game again. At $100 I don't imagine that I will every buy this game for myself, but it was a lot of fun and cant wait to do it again.
After going home and taking care of some errands, my girlfriend said that she was tired and had to get up early so she was going to bed. This gave me an opportunity to go to a local place called Ziggy's Tavern that I know has board games every Tuesday night.
I got there late so many games were already well underway. I did find myself invited to a game of Settlers of Catan. The owner brought out his First Edition of the US version of the game. I know the game very well so I socialized with a few of my friends who where there until they had finished explaining the rules. For those that don't know SoC, it is a resource management game where you roll dice and get resources, you spend resources to build towns and roads and ultimately cities in a race to be the first to 10 points. There are cards that give special abilities that can be bought with resources. There is also a Thief that is a mechanic players can use to block the resource gathering of other players. And then finally players can Trade their resources with each other.
Getting Clay was very tough in this game. After many rounds of very little progress I start to make some progress. I get some lucky breaks and get enough to build a city on the only Clay on a common number (8). I think I have this game locked down and should be winning with in a few turns. Thats when the other players start ganging up to hold me back. The Thief sat on my 8 blocking me from getting any Clay and dragging the game out.
The game is close and I have been at 9 points for the last 30 minutes. I see one of the new players has caught up and he also has 9 points. I am thinking that it's going to be a repeat of the Blue Moon City game. Then the flood gates open and I get the cards I need to win, but it's not my turn. I am convinced that a 7 will be rolled and I will loose everything. Unbelievably no 7 is rolled and I have a stack of about 20+ cards in my hand. Its 3x more than I need to let me build my final city and win the game.
I still love this game, but I have move on to play so many better games that I rarely have the urge to play SoC. If I do its on the Xbox because I can play a game in about 20-30 minutes with the computer doing all the book keeping and set up...it just goes so much faster. A one and half our game of SoC just doesn't make much sense to me anymore.