Sunday, September 17, 2006

Games Played September 16, 2006


One key to happiness – GAMES


On our way through Broomfield CO, we stopped at TimeWellSpent and picked up our game order. Dave Jones is great to have a conversation with regarding games. I would guess that he has played most (perhaps all) of the games he sells, which is really neat. Sue decided to reserve Category 5 (6 Nimmt), Dragon’s Gold, and Hoity Toity for future birthday and Christmas gifts for me (October and December are not far away, so I think I’ll survive). That left Memoir ’44 and Elfenland. Well, Memoir ’44 will not be a game played by the whole family, although I’m looking forward to trying it with Dan, Joel, and Mason. So, the whole stack of new games boiled down to one new one to try this weekend – Elfenland.

When I first heard about Elfenland, I wasn’t too interested, because I didn’t think the family would enjoy the theme, but I was convinced otherwise by folks on BGG and after reading reviews and session reports about the game. The fact that we enjoy other games by Alan Moon was a major influence, too. I’m glad I decided to try it, because it went over very well. What really amazed me was how quickly Joel (age 8) picked up the rules, after I read them through one time. I think he actually got the idea of the game quicker than I did, but maybe that’s not saying too much. Anyway, we played it, enjoyed it, and agreed that we look forward to it again. Dave Jones had told me that he considered this game to be one of those rare ones that plays well with 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6 players. We certainly enjoyed the 6-player game. I think that we are already fairly comfortable with the rules, and I am eager to go again. Results: Katrina, Sue, and me (tied) first (17 cities, no cards left); Mason fourth (15 cities, one card left); Dan and Joel (tied) last (15 cities, no cards left). That was a tight first game!

Next, we played 7-player Bohnanza. Natalia and Joel always do well at this game. Results: Sue first (14 gold); Joel and Natalia (tied) second (13 gold); Mason fourth (11 gold); Dan fifth (9 gold); me sixth (8 gold); Katrina last (7 gold). The scores were really spread out in this game.

Finally, we had time for a game of Settlers of Catan, as usual. This was a good game, with lots of jockeying for position. I believe the Longest Road card was held by three different people. Joel was almost the only one buying Development Cards and easily held the Largest Army card. Near the end, Katrina and Mason both had 8 points. Katrina earlier missed a play that would have given her the Longest Road, and that might have won the game for her. As it was, Mason had the Longest Road. It really looked like one of them would soon win. Then, Joel’s turn came up. He said, “I need a 9,” and immediately rolled that number. As soon as he did, he said, “I win!” We all couldn’t believe it. He had played seven Soldier cards, and we sort of assumed his eighth Development Card was probably a Soldier, but it was a VP card. His dice roll allowed him to build a road and a settlement, and that won the game for him. He had it figured precisely before his turn came around, and he played it perfectly. Great finish! Results: Joel first; Katrina and Mason (tied) second; Dan and me (tied) fourth; Sue last.

During the afternoon, we also went outside (except Mason, who was a bit sleepy and chose to rest) to play Bocce. I won both Bocce games, but unfortunately they don’t count in our family gaming records. Oh, well. . .

I have now removed the shrinkwrap from the Memoir ’44 box, but I’ve not taken the lid off it, until I have time to sit down and thoroughly enjoy going through it all. Maybe I’ll get a chance to do that this afternoon.

--- Gerald … near Denver, Colorado
aka gamesgrandpa -- A grandpa who is a mile high on gaming

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