Friday March 26, 2010 - Gamer's Inn
The day actually kicked off a little early as I taught Robert Bolan how to play GIPF. I really enjoy this one for its opportunities for clever play and the speed with which a game can be completed. Robert and I weren't playing too heavy and we simply played the basic rules so he could learn something new. I whittled him down until he had nothing left to play.
The night at the Gamer's Inn started later, with Nathan Winchester and I meeting up with Robert, Jake Troken, Matt Cullinan, and Brendan Coffee. I pulled out Power Grid and we gave the Korea map a whirl. I'm not a huge fan of this six players, but this game was ok and the plant distribution worked out alright. I started well in back, but made my surges at the right times and pushed us into step two and grabbed my end game plants early enough for the late surge. Unfortunately, I mis-played in purchasing fuel and came up short one city in the second to last round. In the final round, Matt and Jake each powered 14 cities while I was my one city back. If I had not screwed up, I think I would have won the game. As it was, Jake won with $5 in his hand to Matt's zero.
The last game of the night was one that I specifically requested from Steve Bauer, who was happy to bring it out. I had asked him to bring Amun-Re. This is the next event in our online Olympics and I wanted to get in a game before we started and Nathan wanted to get the lowdown on the rules. Steve went through the game, but then Nathan bailed out for the night. Steve still wanted to play, so he and I were joined by James Smyth and Rob Romano. For the record, I just don't enjoy this game. My biggest complaint with the game is that the cards can really favor you, or go against you. With this game being a standard Knizia tight scoring/auction game, I dislike this part of the game. The rest of the mechanics are fine and this is probably one of his best themed game, but I just don't care for the game. At any rate, I led after the first half of the game and knew I was screwed after the first turn of the second. Rob and I tied with 33, James was second with 35 and Steve killed us with his 41. In the second half, I never got a scoring card for my lands (I could have used farmers, Upper Nile, Off the River to score 3 points, but never saw a single bonus card in the second half of the game (and only 1 bonus card the whole game). Blech. The main reason we are playing this next in the PBEM Olympics is that Knizia games are getting yanked from the internet. I'll be only too glad when that game is done.