Authors, Beauties, Crowd, Dungeons, Euros, Freebies - and Games! A first timer's Essen Spiel 09 Photo-filled Diary
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I was thinking if I should write about my Essen experiences in a 'what I bought' and/or 'What I played' geeklist form but that wouldn't make you feel how it is to be in Essen. So I decided to make a geeklist about my experiences there, partly based on the order of the photos I did there. So don't expect anything in order or something over-edited; just as my two days at the fair went by with lots of wandering from places to places, this list will be also quite chaotic.
Most pics have a bigger size; you can see them if you click on them.
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1. Board Game: European Travellers [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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So first we travelled to Gelsenkirchen from Hungary on Wednesday.. Gelsenkirchen is(t) a little city next to Essen, it has about 270 thousand inhabitants, and it's a perfect place to stay when you visit Essen.
We were three:
Bálint Nagy
Hungary
Győr
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and
Tamás Szõnyi
Hungary
Budapest
Pest
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and myself.
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2. Board Game: Journey to the Center of the Earth [Average Rating:6.31 Overall Rank:2441]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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We arrived there in the evening, had dinner then played a bit with games we bought with ourselves just to survive the first night when we have no new games with us. Actually this game was new for me, I hadn't heard too positive feedback about this one before so it was a mild pleasant surprise: of course it's not a great game but a lot better than expected. It's Dorn, after all.
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3. Board Game: Pickomino [Average Rating:6.51 Overall Rank:927]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Then we played Pickomino and went to sleep.
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4. Board Game: Monopoly: Essen [Average Rating:5.33 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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So Thursday it was time to visit the exhibition and fair. We arrived there 10 minutes after the gates opening (because of a little traffic jam) and we were facing a huge crowd, long queues and so on.

Actually waiting in the queue became a kind of game in itself for the crowd. Firstly, it's a 'multiple ways to victory' game: the queues were different in length but the longest queue was also the fastest one so each queue had some advantages, you had to choose. Secondly, it had a hidden strategy not explained in the rules: groups of more than 10 players could buy group tickets cheaper so I could see many temporary groups being formed (unluckily we were not included in any of these).
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5. Board Game Publisher: Heidelberger Spieleverlag
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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The guys I arrived there with knew where we should head first: to the 2,5/5/7,5/10 euros special offers of Heidelberger, the (maybe) biggest German publisher of non-German Fantasy/History/... board games. These boxes were limited in number so you had to go back in every 3 hours to find new and new games there. And they were always very helpful.
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6. Board Game: Beowulf: The Movie Board Game [Average Rating:6.41 Overall Rank:1555]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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So this was my first purchase, I bought it there. I did like Kingdoms when it was playable here at BGG and I heard it's (a bit unbalanced) updated version so now I have it.
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7. Board Game: Die Insel [Average Rating:6.67 Overall Rank:4779]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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As a result of a September math trade I gave my copy of Die Insel to another BGG user
Erik Foltin
Germany
D- 38446 Wolfsburg
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who was working at the Cwali stand. So I said goodbye to this game I have uploaded many photos about before.
(I liked this one best:
)
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8. RPG Item: B3: Palace of the Silver Princess (Green) [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1520]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Meanwhile I met some girls who were dressed up as princesses. It was not unusual to meet fantasy characters in the fair.

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9. Board Game Designer: Friedemann Friese
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Then I met a certain green-haired guy.
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10. Board Game Publisher: Hans im Glück Verlags-GmbH
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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When I travelled to Essen I hoped I will be able to play some HiG and RG games. I had no chance. I guess you have to be born at the tables to be able to play there.
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11. Board Game Designer: Fraser Lamont
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Then I took a pic about one of the Lamont brothers (creators of Snow Tails, now advertising Savannah Tails)...
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12. Board Game: Day & Night [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:1765]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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...and picked up my free copy of Day&Night from the author himself.
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13. Board Game: Elfengold [Average Rating:7.07 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.07 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.07 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I went to the second hand shops and looked for this expansion. It was quite hard to find it for a reasonable price (finally I did and bought it). It still costed as much as the base game! What's more, I found a second-hand shop where they sold Elfenland for 15 Euros and Elfengold for 45... It's the miracle of OOP.
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14. Board Game: Blue Moon City [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:365]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Still there, I also bought a copy of Blue Moon City. I heard it could be bought for 10 euros unopened last year at the Heidelberger corner but it wasn't the case this year.
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15. Board Game: Blue Moon City: Expansion Tile Sets 1 & 2 [Average Rating:7.33 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.33 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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So as I bought BMC I went to the Spielbox booth to buy the previous issues that had these expansions. And they gave me one of them (the Knizia Almanach) for half price as I'm a subscriber since this year.
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16. Board Game: Pickomino [Average Rating:6.51 Overall Rank:927]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I bought this very small version of Pickomino for a friend of mine.
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17. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Europa 1912 [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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It was maybe my only must buy when I travelled to Essen. So I did buy it of course.
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18. Board Game: Dungeon Twister 2: Prison [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:628]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I had to check the new version of Dungeon Twister...

and saw the Dungeon Twister girl (see the artwork behind her).
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19. Board Game: Taurus [Average Rating:7.80 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Some games are simply too expensive.

Even if they really look nice.
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20. Board Game: Atlantis [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1299]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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A mega-size presentation of Atlantis.


It really got a nice marketing push, it looked nice as well but I usually don't really enjoy Leo Colovini's admittedly inventive but very simple games.
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21. Board Game: Palazzo [Average Rating:6.57 Overall Rank:1060]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I think the guys at Alea use BGG very often. The Alea shop sold their games more or less based on the BGG ratings. So Puerto Rico was still 30 euros, In the Year of the Dragon was 20 and I bought Palazzo for 7.50.
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22. Board Game: China Erweiterung [Average Rating:6.57 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.57 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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It was a free giveaway at the Abacus spiele booth...
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23. Board Game: Zooloretto: Grizzly [Average Rating:6.74 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.74 Unranked]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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...and this one too. I got two.
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24. Board Game: Peloponnes [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:454]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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I bought it for a Hungarian geek. I also bought the expansion for him (I found it quite strange to see an expansion with quite many parts but without a box).
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25. Board Game: Imperial 2030 [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:102]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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Actually this one was also an expansion without a box; I found this one very kind from the publisher. They released everything that was different in Imperial 2030 from Imperial in a kind of expansion set (just for the Essen fair) so fans of Imperial didn't have to buy the whole new game for 35 but could buy this 'expansion' for 15 and then you can play Imperial 2030 with the original bits.
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