Monday, November 07, 2005

BGG.con: Saturday, Nov 05

1. Shabbat

Lunch was at some friends of David and Sharron's. I think these people were concerned about showing up in the blog, so I won't name names. However, she is an excellent Scrabble player, like David is.

Somehow, whenever the subject about my involvement with board games comes up, little girls stare at me bug-eyed and then run out of the room to bring a board game to play with me, usually something like Barbie's Rocking Dreamhouse Party or somesuch. Must be the parents don't play enough of these games with their kids, and if they don't, I can't say that I blame them.

This time I refused the first offering, and instead went to the game closet with her (8 year old) to see what other treasures she might have and decided on Guess Who? as the least offensive. The game is structured so that the first person to actually guess right (at random) basically wins. Still better than Barbie's Dream Date With Ken.

Later in the afternoon I played Anagrams with David, a game at which I have slightly more chance of winning than Scrabble. Also, Go on a 9x9, again which I don't win too often against him. It is a shame that he decided not to join me for a while at the con, since he also plays some of my games. I guess he feels that he has better things to do, go figure.

2. Back to the con

Since I had a place to stay over in the hotel, I packed up and made my goodbyes to my friends and arrived at the hotel right before the grand drawing.

Magical things happened at the con while I was gone. I left money and my games to trade with various lovely souls. When I got back to the closet where I had left my games, I saw that almost all were gone and two new ones were there. Great, I figured, I got two games. Good enough and all that I expected. Then the person with whom I left the money found me and game me back all of my money and an additional $55 or so. Good lord. Much better than I would have done. Thank you thank you.

From here on out just assume that I don't remember anyone's name. My fault, but it just got impossible to write them all down. Sorry.

I had sold my CD from Traumfabrik earlier on Friday and left a note to that effect on the box, but apparently the person who said they would sell it for me didn't see the note before selling it. Luckily the person buying it did, so it worked out. The only things that didn't sell were the Magic cards and The Arab Israeli Wars. The games I got in return were Modern Art and China Moon. And the cash.

Time to do some game buying.

Around this time, Derk also found me and gave me a con T-shirt as a gift, I think for being the furthest traveled to the con. I heard someone may have come from Australia, so that would probably have beaten me.

Another strange thing began happening on Sat night. People began seeking me out to buy copies of my game prototypes. I mean, cripes, yeah I spent a good amount of money on each of them, but the components were much worse than I would have liked to have given people for the amount of money I had to charge for them. Apparently word had spread, however and people wanted copies. Yeah. Time to get it published. Of course, I also helped spread the word by physically dragging people over to my table and getting them to play it. Almost all of them had kind words (which doesn't mean much when you're sitting in front of the designer) but some wanted to play again right away and some bought it.

So, if any of you bought the game, please send me comments so that I can ensure that everything about the game is finished and so that I can pass comments on to potential publishers.

And for those of you who didn't actually play it with me: the player screens are meant to hide both your player mats and your money. Tiles go on the mats during the game, and can be shifted around at will. When you have won the game, simply reveal the complete collection filled in correctly.

Back to the drawing. Derk was drawing for a few items for each colored ticket. The only item I really wanted was the Gipf series. I wouldn't have minded a Crokinole board, but there was no way that I could carry it home with me. Unfortunately, I didn't win anything from the main items nor any of the minor items that were cleared out afterwards. Oh well. There is something silly about standing around waiting to see if your number is called on a raffle ticket. It feels suspiciously like playing games with dice. Or vice versa.

Saturday night games:

My Game Prototype 3 times, once with Susan of The Game Ranch, who bought a copy. Thanks, Susan!

Pompeii. OK, I had heard some mixed things about Pompeii, which is what I said to the person who was trying to rope me in. He said that it must have been about a different game called Pompeii, so I sat down. Turns out that the roper was ShillKing, and I think this was his game. And yes, this was the game that I had heard about.

The game is basically a lot of dice rolling to start with, and then a lot of little moves afterwards, most of which don't matter much or do very much. There is some excitement about rolling the dice to see if the game will end, but it feels like standing around waiting to see if your number is called with a raffle ticket. I rescued two boat loads of people early in the game, since I saw how few actions you get before the game ends. Once my pieces were off the board, I had nothing to do the rest of the game. Most of the time most of your actions were not so significant, and when they were, you could usually count on a chaotic tile showing up to undo whatever you just did. And some of the mechanics just didn't come into play much.

OK, it is not as bad as all that, but pretty close. If you got rid of all of the lava tiles it would probably play much better.

Since most of the other people could only make it onto the boat once, I won with an easy margin. (54/15/13/2)

Evo: Another game I am not thrilled with, but I saw some people trying to learn it, and whenever I pass by people trying to learn a game I have to stop and teach, which usually means play. William got five parasols which was great since the climate hesitated at gray for a while. None of us had horns until the end when Elisabeth pulled one and began attacking. I had 5 legs, meanwhile. All said and done, the game was a decisive 60/59/59. Which just goes to show that there is not much difference between all of the genes when all is said and done.

I took out Yinsh from the library before it closed, but didn't get a chance to play with anyone. Another one on the buy list.


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