Games Played WABA Claremont Sat 8th October 2016
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Plenty of games played!

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1. Board Game: Burger Up [Average Rating:6.94 Overall Rank:2608]
Adrian, Leah, Blake and I played this game that I recently acquired. Fun game - fairly short time frame for 2-4 players. Don't run out of money early on! I think Adrian took this one with his many towering and colossal burgers. All agreed, the game makes you hungry...
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2. Board Game: Pictomania [Average Rating:7.31 Overall Rank:641]
Rob and Leese taught Blake, Craig, Leah and myself this fun one. It involves simultaneous pictionary like drawing and guessing. Everyone at the table can see the list of items the words have come from... Doesn't make it any easier but incredibly fun and funny. Highly recommend as a party game addition. Really enjoyed it. I believe Rob slaughtered us all despite not feeling 100%
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3. Board Game: El Grande [Average Rating:7.77 Overall Rank:58]
Played the base game only version of El Grande with Blake, Craig, Leah and myself. Was a good game with difficult choices as always. Blake moved his Grande into the same territory as mine at the start of the game and there begun a futile war of control which allowed Leah and Craig to slowly get ahead. By the end Leah and Craig were miles ahead and Leah took the victory.

A classic game that I am really glad I learnt
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4. Board Game: Ticket to Ride: Nordic Countries [Average Rating:7.64 Overall Rank:130] [Average Rating:7.64 Unranked]
Elaine, Craig and I played this brutal brutal version of ticket to ride. You really have to get your trains on the board as soon as possible. Did I mention this one is brutal. I was doing well until the tickets got calculated :-P

Craig and I decided that as Elaine was the only one to pass the 0 on the score tracker that her score reset leaving him in first and me in second. Unfortunately convention rules that Elaine whooped our butts! with a >100 score leaving us far behind. I came last, if only it was for all those negative tickets...Brutal!
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5. Board Game: Istanbul [Average Rating:7.61 Overall Rank:98]
Played this one at the end of the night with Adam, James*, Nick, myself and Nick's lady friend**(sorry but I'm less good with names at the end of the night). It was neck and neck the whole way, every time someone would get a ruby the rest would follow suit. By the end it was very close, with table talk of how to stop the win being completely futile. James took the win - it was unstoppable! Great game. Always happy to grab this one out.
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6. Board Game: Click Clack Lumberjack [Average Rating:6.44 Overall Rank:1651]
Alicia Smith
Australia
Perth
Western Australia
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Played a few games of this with golden axe, bark and core. Some epic chopping failures and victories.
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7. Board Game: Glen More [Average Rating:7.34 Overall Rank:286]
Alicia Smith
Australia
Perth
Western Australia
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Had a solid game of this one.
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8. Board Game: Navegador [Average Rating:7.56 Overall Rank:192]
Ian O'Toole
Australia
Queens Park
WA
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Christophe and Celine brought their copy of this out-of-print Mac Gerdts design that I've been wanting to try for a long time. Concordia is a favourite of mine, so I wanted to play his other games, and this always comes highly recommended. Warren joined us, forgetting until near the end of the game that he had indeed played this before, long ago.

It didn't disappoint. Elegant mechanisms, difficult decisions, a great implementation of the rondel, and a fantastic market system all combine to make this a winner. Christophe won.

I enjoyed this so much that since then I've tracked down a copy of my own
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9. Board Game: New Bedford [Average Rating:7.18 Overall Rank:1158]
Ian O'Toole
Australia
Queens Park
WA
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Next up Tim, Warren and myself played this worker placement game set in the historic whaling town of New Bedford. This era of American whaling is a big area of interest for me, so I was drawn to the theme.

Unfortunately, I thought the game was pretty flat. There were no real interesting decisions to make, and no moments of tension or excitement. Everyone jut took their turns, then it was over and someone won.

I will try it again with the expansion buildings, which hopefully add a bit of variety.

Another concern that I think everyone at the table had was that the whales are all evenly in terms of value. Some give you more points but they cost an exactly proportional amount of money, so you never really felt like you got something great.
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10. Board Game: Automania [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:790]
Ian O'Toole
Australia
Queens Park
WA
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Next up Leah, Warren and myself played this worker placement game from last year's Essen.

This is a very clever game about building and exporting cars, which features a really simple but fun production line mechanism, where you can place upgrades that will make your car more desirable in either the North American or European market, both of which have fluctuating trends.

I'm not really sure why this game hasn't been picked up for wider distribution. Some have a problem with the artwork, which is very bright and colourful, maybe a little too much. I'd agree that it's pitched slightly wrong, but it's by no means the worst I've come across.

Warren ended up winning this one I think.
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11. Board Game: Pandemic: Reign of Cthulhu [Average Rating:7.45 Overall Rank:326]
Ian O'Toole
Australia
Queens Park
WA
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Last up Leah, Warren and myself played the latest iteration of Pandemic, which I enjoy a lot.

We won, with one turn to spare, making that two out of my five plays that I've won.
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12. Board Game: The Bloody Inn [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:737]
andrew
Australia
bayswater
western australia
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So Karl said we'd possibly die in our sleep if JKuan and i did not humor him in this folly of dark economics..
But actually it's pretty good.

We roped in a young lad to keep our numbers square.

grizzly tales shown
gurgling hemoglobin concealed
wrapped in plastic
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13. Board Game: Nations: The Dice Game [Average Rating:6.97 Overall Rank:759]
andrew
Australia
bayswater
western australia
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Over the centuries tumbling bones clattered..
Karl, JKuan and I played a copy of this out of print gem thrust upon us by pergonofile Rob..

It was so good, we did it twice.

my cenotaph hard
I ground them by stone
they shall remember me
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14. Board Game: A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition) [Average Rating:7.66 Overall Rank:99]
Ernest Chua
Australia
Western Australia
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This was a partly prearranged game (see https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1649586/will-you-conquer-we...). Mark, Kent and I had agreed to play pending finding enough players. Eric came when I did and he agreed to join, and with Adrian owning the game without having learnt it yet, it was the 5 of us who sat down to conquer Westeros.

For those not familiar with the game, each player takes the role of one of the houses, with the winner being the first to 7 castles (or the most after turn 10, then a series of tiebreaks if tied). Each turn, everyone secretly places order on each of their troops and once all are revealed, there are resolved one at a time in turn order. There may be raids, where you discard another player's token, either holding up to your agreement with someone or betraying them by weakening their position. There may be battles, where troops battle over territory (including any betrayals) and unique cards can swing a battle one way or another. There may be consolidating power, where power tokens are gained to be later spent to increase your position on various tracks, each with their own benefit.

We did a partially random allocation, resulting in:
-Kent playing Baratheon
-Adrian playing Stark
-Mark playing Greyjoy
-Eric playing Lanister
-me playing Tyrell
House Martell was unplayed, so that part of the board was appropriately altered. We also played with the Tides of Battle cards.

Kent seemed to get out to an early lead, sweeping down the southwest. He reached 6 castles, and it was Eric who defeated him on the sea to prevent Kent getting his 7th castle [if Eric lost that particular battle, I had two options to fight Kent but neither were great]. Kent and I tusseled in the south, Mark, Eric and Adrian in the north, and there were some skirmishes in the middle. Castles changed hands as each of us had a chance to pull away if certain battles went our way (at one stage, I was on 6 but being low on the Iron Throne track meant turn order went against me in trying to poach a 7th castle). More than once, we were all on 4 castles as we took down real and perceived leaders.

Going into the last turn, no one (we thought) could get 7 castles, so it was a case of how many castles could be held and/or gained. Battles were many and after the dust had settled, Eric with the Lannisters emerged the victors on 5, over Kent, Adrian, and Mark each on 4, and me on 3 (and remembering that there is no second place, only 1 winner!).

Things on reflection:
-I really enjoyed this session - thanks to everyone who played (and Ian who lent us his copy)
-I'm sure we got some rules wrong - as a Fantasy Flight game, the number of bits increases the likelihood of things being missed - but I don't think it was anything major that affected the game (e.g. I think we let Mark choose a siege tower to be a destroyed troop rather than it automatically dying from a lost battle).
-I can understand why people (such as Mark) don't like the Tides of Battle cards. I didn't mind the extra unpredictability of battles, and while I wouldn't play with it all the time, wouldn't mind using them once in a while.
-For some reason, I didn't take The Arbor all game, missing out on a good consolidate power spot.
-If that battle in Starfall with Loras had won, just imagine having another turn with those troops on a plus 1 march order...

Yes, its a long game, but I've never regretted the time spent, and this session was no different.
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15. Board Game: Arboretum [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:267]
Ernest Chua
Australia
Western Australia
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Eric taught me this card game that involves playing cards of different types on the table in an attempted numerically ascending order while keeping enough of that type/s to score or to prevent your opponent scoring. I'll admit that after A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition), my brain was pretty dead as Eric thumped me 75 to 40. Ben joined us in the second game in what wasn't his first game, and somehow I won despite thinking that I messed up even more, 13 to Ben's 10 and Eric's 9.
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16. Board Game: Smash Up [Average Rating:6.80 Overall Rank:717] [Average Rating:6.80 Unranked]
Kent Hurley
Australia
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Played a game of this with Blake while waiting for Ernest to turn up and play GoT.

I played as Ninja-Ignobles verses Blake's Tornado-Minions of Cthulhu.

The Ignobles (a game of thrones knock-off faction) specialise in giving control of their minions to other players for extra abilities, which I doubly exploited by forcing Blake to win bases that awarded more points to the second player!
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