Friday June 22, 2007
Tonight I hosted a small game night. I had invited a couple guys I had been in contact with from the boardgame geek as well as my friend Steve Wicklund from work. Joining us was Justin Easley. We started the night with a playing of Taluva, which Steve and I wanted to try with three players after playing a rash of two-players games of this. The game was definitely more interesting, and Steve surprised himself with a win.
After that, Justin wanted to learn Age of Steam. I pulled out the France map and set about explaining the game. Though a bit overwhelming at first, they dove right in. At the end of the first turn, we realized that we had overlooked the importance of Paris (Paris gets half of all the good production in the game, in addition to taking every color good, except black). We agreed that we should start over (besides, it worked out to be a good introduction to the flow of the game). Once we got going, it got interesting. Being new, Justin and Steve built a bit randomly at first (though Steve immediately took away what I was planning to do first turn out). Despite their initial hickups, the game stayed tight for the first few turns - Steve was the first to turn a profit. After 4-5 turns, I had setup and started running moves of 5 and then 6. This allowed me to pull ahead, though Steve and Justin stayed close. In fact, Steve started having to move 3s and 4s (he just ran out of options). Justin stayed close, moving a good number of 4s and 5s. With income reduction, I never pulled too far away. Then, towards the mid-end game, Justin and I started having to feed Steve a point or two each move in order to keep up with each other. On the last two turns, Steve clawed back in with multiple deliveries of 6, while Justin and I continued to get 5s (one point of which went to Steve). In the end, Justin's lack of track cost him second place, while Steve and I ended up being pretty close in track. My slim income lead allowed me the victory.