$10.00
2009 Edition of Look what my Secret Santa sent me...
Gary C
United States
San Antonio
Texas
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Once again I am running this list as a central location to let your Secret Santa know when your (hopefully much appreciated) gift has arrived to your house.

Use this list to record what your Secret Santas sent you and remember to include any comments such as thanks that you want to give your Secret Santa. When you post on this list, you may want to make a note on your profile with a link to your entry so your Secret Santa can easily locate your confirmation of delivery and your reaction. That way your Secret Santa can look to see if you received your gift and you can post any comments you may have about the gift here and you can reply without the identity of your Secret Santa ever having to be released!

Please only make an entry when you actually receive the present!

I don't know about anyone else, but I generally obsess about whether a package has arrived at it's intended destination. I drive my wife crazy with checking tracking numbers constantly! So it will be nice to see when those gifts are actually received by the giftee (or are they just sitting unclaimed on the neighbor's porch?)


To see how the previous years' editions of this list have gone, look at these links:


"2008 List"

"2007 List"

"2006 List"



Simon's yearly breakdown of games:
**EDIT Just Added** Most Popular Secret Santa Games of 2009

Most Popular Secret Santa Games of 2008

Most Popular Secret Santa Games of 2007

Most Popular Secret Santa Games of 2006



[b]New Note (I placed this in the comments section as well): If you have added a "Comment" of your gift receipt, please take the time to "Add Item" to this GeekList rather than to place a comment in this section of the receipt of your gift. The actual items being added is how the statistics get accumulated for Simon Hunt's great results list located at http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/49122

A good example of how to make an entry useful for this other list is located at: this entry.

Making an actual entry will also make it easier for your Secret Santa to locate your Item.

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1201. Board Game: San Juan [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:160]
Cindy
United States
Virginia
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I'm sorry Santa for adding my presents this late. I actually received 2 different packages this Christmas. Santa was communicating with me through videos, which was very cool. He mentioned that I would be receiving a small package in the mail.

I received it and in it, was Game Night Candy, four small boxes of candy with board game boxes (The Game of Life, Monopoly, Sorry, Clue)
I was warned not to try the candy, as it has been sitting there for a while.

and a German Shepherd pet ornament
I LOVE the ornament Santa, and he will be sitting right here on my desk.

I should mention that Santa was threatening to get me a copy of Jonas Brothers Connect 4, but couldn't find one, then it was the Twilight version of Monopoly, and Britney Spears Sorry was also mentioned. I'm just glad that none could be found. I promise Santa, I was real good this year last year.

I was told that I didn't have to wait until Christmas to start playing the games. First gift out of the box was
San Juan.
A very much wanted game. We actually played 2 games so far, and naturally, I didn't win either time.

Second game was TransAmerica.
My son was looking forward to getting this game. He has been learning about the American railroad in school, so this game will hopefully, help him understand a little clearer. Well, at least try to understand.

I thank you Santa, for your generosity, and I hope you and your family had a GREAT Christmas and Happy New Year.


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1202. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:30] [Average Rating:7.78 Unranked]
Tuuli Mustasydän
Finland
Joensuu
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I came home from holiday break to a pile of envelopes (card exchange cards) and a post office slip, so I went immediately to pick up my parcel. I had my fingers crossed hoping that it wasn't too big, because I have to carry it home, you know.

The box looked about the right size for a TTR-type box, but looking at the customs sticker confirmed my gut feeling that it was Dominion.

Inside, it was wrapped:


And further confirmation:


Hurrah! I'd ordered 5 packs of Mayday euro sleeves a while ago, and they were too small for what I wanted to use them for. Of course, that's just perfect for the Dominion cards!

But wait, what's this stuck to the side?
Dominion: Envoy Promo Card and Dominion: Black Market Promo Card

I've been wanting to show this game to my friends, since it's easy to teach and learn, but I've been somewhat deterred by the amount of space it takes up (and the price tag). I'm looking at my shelf right now and trying to find a little space for it -- I'm sure I'll come up with something but I'll probably end up with a trading card box or one of the fancy Plano boxes.

It took me a little snooping around to track down who my Secret Santa was, but here he is, hiding under a pseudonym:

Mark Chandler
United States
Altamont
New York
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kiss THANK YOU (NOT-SO-SECRET-ANYMORE) SANTA! kiss
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1203. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.12 Overall Rank:6]
David and Natalie
New Zealand
Wellington
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Wow. Wow. Wow!

On the morning of Christmas Eve, we received our box from our Secret Santa. We swore not to open it until Christmas, which we did, although we've only today got back in town to celebrate it.

When we opened the box, we were excited to discover one of our must have games, Agricola. Wow! This has already been played numerous times, with 2 players and with 4, and I know it'll take an age for us to master it.

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

We know that Agricola is anything but cheap, so we weren't expecting anything else. But also in the box was Ticket to Ride: Europa 1912 which is fantastic for two reasons in particular: 1) Ticket to Ride: Europe remains our most played game, so a bit of variety and freshness for it will make it even greater, and 2) the expansion doesn't arrive in New Zealand for another few days, so we're ahead of our Kiwi counterparts.

Thank you so much, Santa! We feel incredibly fortunate!
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1204. Board Game: Frag [Average Rating:5.78 Overall Rank:3967]
Tobias Fromme
Germany
Freising
Bavaria
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I left for my Christmas tour to visit all branches of the family before my present arrived, so I found it when I returned in the new year and was allowed to unwrap presents twice, yeah!
But before I removed to wrapping I read the card and was warned of a deadly christmas... surprise Good thing, that christmas was already over, so no danger.
The game was deadly indeed: Frag! I usually like complex games with elegant mechanisms... well... not at all like Frag. But it is such fun with a load of friends and a little beer laugh

Thank you very much, Santa!kiss This will be played often, I promise, and an entire choral of thanks from my friends, who are less often forced to play Caylus now laugh
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1205. Board Game: Risk: Godstorm [Average Rating:6.32 Overall Rank:1720]
Raul Evangelista
Brazil
Araraquara
SP
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Yesterday I returned from my Christmas-New Year trip, when I visited my relatives.
During this period, I struggled hard not to think that my gift had not arrived yet. It was in vain. Every day I remembered that my Santa had not given me the gift.

When I got home, I had a pleasant surprise: a box sent from the United States!



This can only be from my Secret Santa, I rejoiced!


As a happy and excited child, as my wife pointed out, I immediately opened the package.




The board game that was on top of my wishlist: RISK Godstorm!

Thank you very much, Secret Santa! You made a not-so-young child very happy!



Tracking the order, I realized that it came exactly on December, 24th. The exact day!

Thank you very much, "Benjamin Garrod", my (supposed?!) Secret Santa!
(...Now I just need to discover your true identity!)

I wish you and yours a new year full of successes and conquests, with a lot of energy and enthusiasm and, of course, with many many many board games!

Raul
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1206. Board Game: Santa's Special Delivery Game [Average Rating:6.60 Unranked]
Greig
Canada
Peterborough
Ontario
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I went out there in search of experience, to taste and to touch and to feel as much, as a man can before he repents...
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Thank you "Not so Secret, Not so Santa"!!!

So my Secret Santa rocked. Simple as that. He sent me a teaser message that included a video, a code to break and a great deal of creativity.

Here was his first message:

Quote:
Greetings to you, my dear friend!

Santa is on leave for few days. Poor old man was so tired, and I, his best friend, have decided to help him with all this Christmas fuss. Let me introduce myself. My name is Ded Moroz. If you're interested, it means "Grandfather Frost".



My journey to your country was long and difficult. This year you were not so great guy like last year... He-he-he. So I think up one funny thing. This year I will present you a gift equivalent to your naughtiness! Prepare yourself

And here is Not So Secret Not So Santa puzzle for you:

?WHATblankISblankMYblankNAME?

If you answer this question, you receive second message from me. Maybe you could find in it one more clue... the gift is awaiting for you!

Wish you good luck.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

PS. Oh, and Thanksgiving Day too...


My "Not so Secret, Not so Santa" wanted to be found out. He wanted me to figure out who he was. I was slow. Very slow. I had a couple of friends help me figure it out and after a little while we figured out that it had to be someone from Russia. This was mainly due to the Ded Moroz clip. So with that in mind my friend provided me with a list of four possible Russian Secret Santa's.

I messaged:
Alexey Babaitsev
Russia
Moscow (Postal Code 115597)
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I was wrong. But, Imploded played along a bit and even sent me a coded message. Devious, those Russians!

So it was back to the drawing board and back to those bolded letters and perhaps an extra hint from my Secret Santa. Finally, we cracked the code:

My name is Vladislav

That led me to:

Vladislav Volchenko
Ukraine
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I was correct!

So what did he get me? I promised him a photographic journey, so here it is:











Thank you, Vladislav, for Snow Tails, Vineta and Gang of Four! More importantly, thank you for being an awesome Secret Santa and bringing joy into my life from your first geekmail!

Merry Christmas!
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1207. Board Game: Chaos in the Old World [Average Rating:7.70 Overall Rank:59]
James Conrad
United States
Bend
Oregon
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We opened our Secret Santa packages on Christmas day and we're finally back in town to post about it!

Santa did some excellent research and threw in something prefect for Dad as well as the kids.

Thank you Santa!


Zitternix!
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1208. Board Game: Race for the Galaxy [Average Rating:7.80 Overall Rank:23]
Douglas Catchpole
Australia
Ashfield
New South Wales
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So on the 21st I got a geekmail from my SS telling me that I should expect my gift soon. Unfortunately, whenever the mailman did come in amongst his numerous days off, all he brought me was bills.

I was getting a little concerned as new year came and went, and the gift hadn't shown up, we gave up the keys to the place we were living in and we trek south soon for greener pastures. "Would Santa be able to find me in Sydney?" I pondered. My wife was getting fed up with numerous trips to the post box, combing it out for undelivered mail slips.

But today, oh most delicious of days, what wonders you held. Early this afternoon though, I got a phone call from
Simon May
Australia
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. He seemed concerned, our house is empty, where are we? Never fear, I console, we are staying with my parents, you can bring the gift here. And so he did.

And after a lovely dinner, I opened the parcel to find, Race for the Galaxy and Robotory. A game from the top of my wishlist and a game that looks like fun that I hadn't heard of. I am apparently to learn the rules tonight so that I can teach them to my wife tomorrow. I look forward to it.

Thank you Santa.

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1209. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:223]
Jason Barnes
United States
Fort Wayne
Indiana
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Santa provided me with a copy of RoboRally. Now I can start implementing some sweet face-off and capture-the-flag scenarios that I had envisioned.

Santa also got me a copy of Kahuna. I've even had the opportunity to play it with my brother and I thought it was a great amount of fun and challenge.

Thanks Santa!
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1210. Board Game: Colonia [Average Rating:6.59 Overall Rank:1434]
Francis K. Lalumiere
Canada
Brossard
Quebec
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Opened this two days ago (for our yearly, 24h gaming extravaganza) and I was thrilled!
We played two games, right there and then, and we loved it.

Thank you Santa!
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1211. Board Game: A Castle for All Seasons [Average Rating:6.78 Overall Rank:740]
Marty Wißmath
Canada
Port Coquitlam
British Columbia
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My SS Gift arrived a few weeks before Christmas, all nicely wrapped and with a Christmas Card. I put the card on the mantle and placed the present under the tree of course. Happily I did manage to wait until Christmas, and it was one of the last presents I opened. Very grateful for this one, the top game on my wishlist; I had a chance to play it twice over the holidays with family and everyone loved it, which is rare! One of my new favourites: Thank You Secret Santa!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!laugh
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1212. Board Game: Power Grid: Factory Manager [Average Rating:6.94 Overall Rank:463]
Zontziry Johnson
United States
Seattle
Washington
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I sincerely apologize for not listing my Secret Santa gifts earlier, as my Secret Santa was AWESOME and I received gifts before Christmas!

I was surprised to see not ONE but TWO games in the box! One was Power Grid - Factory Manager (so cool!!).

The other was none other than Arena - Roma II.

Thank you, Secret Santa, for your generosity! I've thoroughly enjoyed getting to play both games!!
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1213. Board Game: Chicago Express [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:257]
Ron Pfeiffer
United States
Surfside Beach
South Carolina
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Well on 1/4/00 I got this. Thanks Secret Santa. I wish that you had communicated with me just a little. I appreciate your gift but it didn't generate much XMAS spirit. Maybe next year you will be more involved. There should be much more to this than simply sending a gift, especially two weeks after Christmas. Sorry if I'm not jumping with joy but the delay sort of tempers my happiness. Maybe a lesson learned, then again maybe not!
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1214. Board Game: Pandemic: On the Brink [Average Rating:8.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.13 Unranked]
Beth Davis
United States
Wilmington
North Carolina
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Wow, Thank you for sending Pandemic: On the Brink. You sure knew the right game to send. We have played it several times already.
You also sent

This pleased my older son, now he has a chance to start the games (instead of always his younger brother!!)
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1215. Board Game: Tobago [Average Rating:7.13 Overall Rank:306]
Gary C
United States
San Antonio
Texas
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The same day I left for an extended holiday vacation with the entire family, I received an update from UPS that Santa's elves had delivered my Secret Santa gift. Unfortunately that meant that it would be another 11 days before I could open the gift and almost another week still before I would have a chance to make this GeekList entry!!! While it was very unnerving to wait, it was very nice to come home to a surprise package.

Apparently I was very good this year (or at least I have a good PR person running interference for me) and I got a copy of not only one of my most wanted games, Tobago, but I also received a game which I bought and promptly left on an airplane and was very happy to receive a replacement of:

Coloretto


Not only those items, but I also received a t-shirt from ThinkGeek.com



- thanks a LOT Santa, it is all greatly appreciated and both of those games will log a lot of play over the coming year and beyond!

Thanks!
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1216. Board Game: Taj Mahal [Average Rating:7.37 Overall Rank:186]
Mike Stinchfield
United States
Olympia
Washington
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Thanks Santa! I screwed up and had an old address when Secret Santa kicked off so I truly never expected to get anything. Great surprise when I returned home from the holiday vacation in another state and found Taj Mahal waiting at my step! Thanks much! It will be well played.
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1217. Board Game: Arkham Horror: Innsmouth Horror Expansion [Average Rating:7.98 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.98 Unranked]
iorek byrnison
United States
brooklyn
New York
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i returned from holiday in the balmy southern colonies (in all honesty it was just as cold there as it is here in new york) to find that santa had left a gigantic box delicately secured with duct tape in my bedroom!

inside i found Innsmouth Horror! goo

it's a good thing that my new apartment came with a gigantic table, for now i don't need a bigger boat...

then, as i recovered my composure, i found:



DERK'S ARM!

then i realized it was not Derk's arm, but a copy of Tichu! HOORAY! i no longer have to hide my head in shame when derk asks if i have a copy of this game, and i have a new fun roommate game to play!

thanks, santa, for all my wonderful stuff! even though i haven't a clue as to your actual identity...
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1218. Board Game: Ghost Stories [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:134]
Claus Jensen
Denmark
Stenlose
Sealand
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My secret santa chose a great game for me, and also to not be entirely secret, which I actually enjoyed.

On my list of things to do, is to write a thank you not of length, worthy of the package that I got, which included so much more than the boardgame itself.

Thanks santa!
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1219. Board Game: Hellenes: Campaigns of the Peloponnesian War [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:1282]
Russ Williams
Poland
Wrocław
Dolny Śląsk
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Thanks Secret Santa!

PS: I updated my profile a couple weeks ago after receiving this excellent looking game! Personally I'd much rather simply check my target's profile and/or collection than have to keep up with a Geeklist with zillions of items to try to see if my target got their gift.... But hey, I saw the geekmail to add an item to this list, so I did it too.
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1220. Board Game: Chicago Express [Average Rating:7.25 Overall Rank:257]
Renato Corrêa
Brazil
Florianopolis
Santa Catarina
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Thx a lot Secret Santa. I loved the game, and have played many times already. Amazing gift.
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1221. Board Game: Through the Ages: A Story of Civilization [Average Rating:8.21 Overall Rank:4]
Samuel Sol
Brazil
São Paulo
SP
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Wooooooooooohhhhhhhooooooooooooooo

Just arrived!!! A LOVE IT!
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1222. Board Game: Bombay [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:1462]
Bruce Murphy
Australia
Pyrmont
NSW
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I was delighted to get this lighter-weight member of the Ystari board game family from my Secret Santa. I've been looking at it on the shelf of my FLGS for ages but I'd never been quite brave enough to buy it!

This gives me more options when I'm playing with folks who prefer lighter-weight games, which is great. Thanks, Santa!
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1223. Board Game: Endeavor [Average Rating:7.48 Overall Rank:126]
Fabio Kepler
Brazil
Alegrete
RS
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Thank you very much, Secret Santa! I got a big box last week which made me smile when I saw where it came from. "Santa hasn't forgotten me", I thought. The post stamp date said it was sent on Dec 4th. "So it's not my SS's fault". Although it would have been very nice to have the nicely gift wrapped boxes under my Christmas tree three days before, it saved me from the excruciating pain of having to wait to open them. So it just took me the time to think these things and I was already opening the mailing box.

For my surprise, there were two gift boxes, one small, and one big. "So nice!" I started with the small one. It was a copy of:

Ubongo BMM



"Nice! A new game I actually never heard of!" I liked it a lot, before even playing it. Now I have played it around three times since last week and must say I enjoyed the game very much. My shelf lacks more fillers like this one.

The big box! I carefully opened it (it was so nicely wrapped!) and smiled again. "Endeavor! Fantastic!" Now I can't wait to play it! I tried to play it in 2 people, just to learn, and must say that, although the game clearly doesn't work for 2, it already feels great, and will probably be on the table all over my summer vacations.

I know shipping to my country costs a lot, besides taking a long time, and this was my first SS, so I must say I'm very happy with the experience, and once again, thank you very much, Secret Santa! Hope you had a great Christmas and may you have a wonderful year.

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1224. Board Game: Jambo [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:325] [Average Rating:7.10 Unranked]
Jeremy Arcus-Goldberg
United States
Natick
MA
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Arrived today on January 5th. I am so thankful to my Secret Santa. There was a long delay because of a problem with my address. But once that was sorted out, the game quickly arrived. It was gift wrapped too, what a joy!

And as my joy grew, so did more gifts:

Race for the Galaxy: The Gathering Storm

and

Race for the Galaxy: Rebel vs Imperium

Secret Santa, you are the greatest!
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1225. Board Game: Dominion [Average Rating:7.78 Overall Rank:30] [Average Rating:7.78 Unranked]
Ralf Menzel
Germany
Dortmund
North Rhine-Westphalia
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(After my vacation I only now have proper internet access again.)

I spend the time around Christmas at my mother's house. So that's the address I gave my Secret Santa to send their gift to.

On Sunday the 20th a parcel carrier rang the bell. (They normally don't work on Sundays. But probably they had a lot to do before Christmas.) She had a parcel from Amazon for me. As all the presents I order from Amazon had arrived by then, I guessed that it could be the gift from my BGG Secret Santa and a sticker on the parcel saying that someone wants to give me a treat confirmed this.

In the parcel was a nicely gift-wrapped box. Reckoning its size I surmised that it could be just the game that I had got as a present for my godchild. (And as it turned out, I was right.) As it was proper, I put the gift aside to be left unopened until Christmas Eve. (What helped to keep my temptation at bay was the fact that I wouldn't have any opportunity to play a game until then.)

On Christmas Eve I opened the present to find that my Secret Santa has sent me a copy of Dominion. A note from him or her said that it is one of their favourite games. Well, Secret Santa, I had played few games of it (with a friend who owns a copy) and I think that I can become one of my favourite games too. So, thanks a lot, Secret Santa.

A few days later my godchild, his mother, and I played a few rounds, and we all liked it a lot. (Unfortunately we only had half an hour of time, so we couldn't complete the game.)
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