Thursday, February 02, 2006

Game Night Writeup

First let me apologize. I'm a day late with this post and I'm significantly behind on my reviews. I have several games lined up for review and I haven't found time to put the words on the page. Let's just say that it's been a little busy around here. It looks like things may be slowing down a bit after this week so hopefully I'll be able to get things going again soon.

So on to game night. We had another good turnout. Michael K returned and brought a friend: Michael L. (Another Michael? We're suffering from a serious lack of originality here folks.) Unfortunately, I was involved with other games so I didn't get a chance to play with them this time.

While we waited for people to arrive, several of us brought out Money, a very nice Knizia card game where the cards are currency and players exchange sets of cards in an attempt to amass the most. In typical Knizia fashon, there are some wrinkles in the scoring that encourage people to collect homogenous sets of currency rather than just collecting the highest denominations. It's a good game that plays well and plays fast.

A large group of the Seattle contingent decided to play Battletech, the old 1985 miniatures game that spawned the Mechwarrior computer franchise. Definitely not my kind of game but they seemed to enjoy themselves and that's what game night is all about.

Christopher, Jose, Mike M and I played a prototype game by Christopher and Jose called Cargo. It's a pickup and deliver game where people build transportation lines across the US and deliver things from point to point. Christopher's inspiration was the old crayon games. He wanted to take what he liked best of the crayon games and distill it into something a little shorter. I thought it was a pretty good game. There's still some issues here and there but overall I was quite pleased with the experience.

It wouldn't be a recent game night without someone bringing out Descent and, sure enough, Darryl, Adam and Mike K spent the night playing that. I'm not sure what more I can say about Descent. It's an excellent game but I'd rather play two or three games over game night instead of being locked into playing just one.

The two Michaels played a game of Battle Line, which is basically Schotten Totten with a couple of minor changes. I've never played either game but I hear very good things. The Michaels seemed to like it.

After Cargo broke up, the four of us brought out Elasund - The First City. I've played this game three times now and I can say without hesitation that this is the best thing that Klaus Teuber has done in years. It's got a reasonable playing time. It has attractive bits and a very clear presentation. The rules are easy to grasp yet allow for some really satisfying game play. There's a nice blend of strategy, tactics and a healthy dose of "take that!" All in all, it's just a very, very good game. I highly recommend this one. (Oh great! Here's another game I should review soon.)


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