Monday, April 30, 2007

April 30, 2007 Hansa

Finished another game of Hansa on MaBiWeb with Dion Garner and Mike Gingold. I had a fortunate set of goods available on the first couple turns which I used to build up an early lead that held me through the end of the game. Final score: mikeg: 34, dion: 42, charles: 53

Sunday, April 29, 2007

More on Poker Chips

So, I ordered a sample set of Turf Club chips and they were pretty much exactly as described on Board Games with Scott - which is to say - nice heft and sound, and completely non-slippery. The ridge detail on the face of the chip doesn't interfere with stacking and neither do the chips interlock like the really cheap plastic bicycle chips you played with as a kid. However, they are incredible as far as non-slippery - I took the stack of seven chips and tried to squeeze them to get them to "slip" and they won't even budge the smallest amount. However, I have a couple issues that keep me from calling these perfect. First - the colors. I like that they have a lot of colors, and the colors are solid on the edge. Too bad they used some non-standard colors (the $10 chip is light purple, $25 is green, but not vibrant green, rather an army drab, etc). The other thing is the price - $0.60-0.70 each. Since the graphic on them is so-so and I don't care for the colors, I'm not sold on these yet. For this price, I'm leaning towards something else. I was thinking about some A-J chips. They come in a load of colors and are cheap and I could sticker/label them. However after reading a bit more, turns out they are some of the slickest chips around. Add to that the fact that the center is flush, not recessed. Now, my last set was like that, and that's ok, but I'm still going to look around and see if I can find better.
BTW, I think I've settled on what I want to do for graphics on the chips - games. Age of Steam will hit a chip for sure. The logo is perfect for a round chip - probably on the red $5 chip. I'm not sure about the rest - possibly curving the Ticket to Ride logo for the $1. Some of it will be based on my favorite games, but also there has to be a definitive logo or representation. I could do the Ra figure on a chip easily. Power grid would be cool, if I could figure out WTF to use (a city?).

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

April 25, 2007 Samurai

Another Samurai game on MaBiWeb. Sadly, the previous game I had been in was with Jason Sato and never got started. This was in memory of Jason. The opponents were Dion Garner, Kirk Bauer, and new comer Matthew Frederick (new in the sense that I hadn't played him online prior to this). I got stuck going first (which I hate) and made a play towards the three-token city. Everyone else promptly struck at the same place and I felt that I had pretty much wasted my tokens there. I was able to claw my way into a 4 piece hold on hat tokens, but Matthew and Dion started playing nasty with each other and I was forced to take a hat on a turn I really wanted to take something else (I've learned that you pretty much have to have at least 5 of one of the three types if you expect to have a shot at winning in a 4-player game). Because of that missed opportunity, I ended up one piece behind Kirk in the finally tally (ok, maybe not because of that, but that's how it played in my head). I enjoyed getting to play with Matthew and hope to see him around online a bit more.

Monday, April 23, 2007

April 23, 2007 Memoir Charles vs Jason

Luck was with me on this one as Jason couldn't get a roll to save his life. He rolled a lot of flag, which never really put me in a bad spot. With a tank and multiple infantry, I was able to peck at him and pull out a 4-0 win. 121-111 in favor of the Axis for the war.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

April 21, 2007 Battlecry Charles vs Jason

Well, it didn't take long for Jason to wipe me out of this one. I tried to be aggressive and push his forces back, but Jason combined some early killer rolling with my lack of ability to counter where I needed. This one just wasn't going my way. Jason won 5-2 and the Confederates are now up 89-85 for the war.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Poker Chips

Once upon a time, I had some chips. Now, these chips were nothing special - 11.5g dice chips that are available at Target and Walmart. I ordered a set of stickers made up and applied them to the chips. The stickers had "AZ Boardgamers" on them, so when we moved to Nebraska, I traded them to Dion Garner. I don't know why, but I now feel like I want to get a new set of chips. I'm trying to decide if I want to get a nice set, or go back to an inexpensive set. I've been looking at the expensive chips out there and they run about $1 a chip. If I do decide on a nice chip, it will likely be: Turf Club or either Paulson's James Bond or Paulson's Pharohs.
The Turf Club chips are leading for a couple reasons - they have solid edge colors, loads of colors and denominations, and they are far cheaper (I've seen them in the $0.70 range). I've ordered a sample set to see how I like them and if I want to start getting them. If I go with a nice set, I'll likely have to spread out the order over time.
If I decide on a cheaper set, then I'll probably go back to the dice chips from Target, and start working on a new custom sticker set. I've been trying to decide what graphics I'd go with. Huskers, Dragons (I did dragons for the AZ Boardgamer chips), Railroad theme, etc. The biggest issue with the custom ones - the graphics are really much smaller than you think (than I thought any way). That, and the dice only come in 5 colors. I'd really like to be able to have 7. Ideally I'd like to have $1, $2, $5, $10, $25, $100, $500

Friday, April 20, 2007

April 20, 2007 Memoir Charles vs Jason

Well, we finally got settled into our new house and I got VASSAL back into working condition. We fired up the games again, and it didn't take long for Jason to pull out another victory (oh how he must have been longing to win at something). The axis extended their lead with a 6-5 victory, and now lead the war 121-107.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

More on The Magic Rat

I knew Jason Sato through the AZBoardgamers. He was a very enthusiastic gamer that enjoyed games of nearly every type - he often referred to himself as an old school wargamer, though he also enjoyed eurogames, the so-called ameritrash games, collectibles (he played a lot of Hero and Horror Clix), trivia, and lots of old school card and board games. Over the last couple of years, I often looked to Jason when considering picking up older games, as he would offer his opinion, but he understood that not everyone felt like he did about games, so he'd give you enough information that you could make an informed decision on your own. He'd often mention that he liked a game, but after a few playings, the game got repetitive or boring, so when I compiled my top ten list for the AZ Boardgamers I payed attention to what he enjoyed playing and made a point to try a number of them. Jason was almost always willing to play a teaching game and point out the tactics and strategies as you played that first game (and he let you flounder on your own after that ;) ). I also discovered that he enjoyed Backgammon and he and I played on and off during the course of the last year. I had hoped that we'd get a chance to play some online after I moved and I'm saddened by the thought that I will never get that chance.

Here is his list of top 25 games.

  1. Puerto Rico
  2. Princes of Florence
  3. El Grande
  4. Age of Steam
  5. History of the World
  6. Union Pacific
  7. Through the Desert
  8. Carcassonne: Hunters and Gatherers
  9. Backgammon
  10. Acquire
  11. Liar's Dice
  12. Empires of the Middle Ages
  13. Up Front
  14. Ingenious
  15. Keythedral
  16. Little Round Top
  17. Power Grid
  18. San Juan
  19. Dune
  20. Java
  21. Fresh Fish
  22. 1830
  23. Age of Renaissance
  24. Medieval Merchant
  25. Hare and Tortoise

Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Magic Rat is gone

I just found out that my friend Jason Sato aka The Magic Rat has passed away. Apparently he suffered a massive stroke on Wednesday night while playing games at the Game Depot and then left us on Friday morning. Jason was truly a great gamer and I enjoyed all the time I had spent with him the last year or two. It saddens me to see him go and my thoughts and prayers are with his family and his friends who I know already miss him terribly.