The drive up the Marches and across the A55 to Conwy was foggy, grey and unremarkable; Wales doesn't really show its magnificence in a gloomy January. I stopped off in Llandudno to gather some self-catering essentials (vegetables, fruit, chicken, pasta and beer) then rumbled in to a fortuitous right-outside-the-hostel parking space.
A few trips to unload (the car) then it was straight down to gaming - ten minutes BEFORE the official opening time of 6PM - with new hotness (to me) prototype: Rome Sweet Rome:
Coming along steadily, I noted - as Aaron would a little later - that chaining effects triggering in the late game can get messy, so I need to tidy up the resolution tracking somehow; 'A' suggested a simple set of counters in each suit, which I like very much.
There was a short pause while I whipped up a chilli chicken stir-fry accompanied by a palette-cooling Waggledance beer:
Back to the raison d'etre for being here with an introduction to a Knizian return-to-the-form-of-old: Babylonia.
In summary: it's like T&E and Hacienda and feels as warm and familiar as the family cat on one's lap. Everyone (apart from me) seemed to spend every turn - including others' - gaining large swathes of points from one source or other. The board fills with tactile tokens and 'surrounded' tiles score more. Babylonia seems such an obvious idea and is so simple to explain/get going on that I think this may well be an early SdJ call.
More RSR and then to something meaty, but quick:
My own KS copy has languished, unplayed, at home so I'm happy to have had the chance to play/learn. I did horribly-badly in the first of two games: totally misunderstood how the 'call for dividends' would play out. In the second game, I TRIPLED my end score but still only managed 3rd place. No matter; this is a blink-and-you'll-miss-it 30 min treat and shall be first in the bag for next Friday's RoW 10th birthday celebrations.
The hour was getting late, so we rounded up some stragglers for a 5p King Thief Minister:
How delightful it is to see folks' faces contort in puzzlement and role-tracking concentration! Mascarade without all the titting about, KTM was - once again - concluded within 30 mins thanks to me Peasant-ing the Hell out of the table (ie. pointing out all of the hidden roles' positions to steal the central pot o'cash)!
Bez convinced us to try Wavelength and I must admit to being a little unimpressed by the initial pitch:
However, Wavelength is a super, banter-pumping party treat: in summary, choose a category from a card then spin a dial with a small 'scoring area' on it. Revealed to the active player only, that player must then come up with a clue to the category that prompts the others to fix a needle somewhere on a scale; scoring sectors hidden, players discuss where 'A cooling Iron' would sit in a category of "Too Hot / Too Cold" (left of the dial, right of the dial). Score points for revealing the scoring sectors with the needle 'inside'. Mr Wolfgang Warsch is quite the designer, isn't he?! Such a bloody SIMPLE but well-executed idea: grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr! (waves fists at the sky)
Pacing myself, bedtime was 12.30AM and I dreamed curious layered dreams of Youth Hostels, snoring and people dressed as cats.
Life and Games (but mostly games) from Tony Boydell: Dad, Husband and Independent UK Game Designer.
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