Thursday, November 15, 2007

BGG.con 2 - Wednesday

BGG.con really starts on Wed evening. Anyone not here on Wed evening is missing out on prime gaming time.

I seem to have misplaced my blogging notebook, which means this will have to be short.

Wed morning was a simpe affair of buying food and stuff, and Wed afternoon I headed over to the hotel, hoping to find space to crash for Wed and Thur night. I ended up staying with Mischa Krilov Wed night, and we'll find something for tonight.

Wed afternoon was the massive set up job, helping Aldie arrange his 1300 games which he had shipped over here by movers. Then lots of cutting out of name cards, cutting out the Pirate Trading game cards, and stuffin envelopes.

I met lots of nice people. Game publishers and authors were alredy on hand, such as Friedmann Friess with his spiky green hair, the guys from Fantasy Flight with his spiky blue hair, Jay Tummelson of Rio Grande Games, and so on.


I started with FF's Essen game. I forget the name. It's a quick Geschenkt like game. Each player has a hand of cards. Each round, players put face down one card each, and you bid on the entire row with chips, gradually revealing cards as people withdraw from the bidding. You get more and more gold for withdrawing, and only the last pays. It's more bluffing and luck than Geschenkt, but nice. Not for my group, I think.

Then I joined Utopia, taught by Jay. Utopia is an area control, monument building game, which has some reasonable mechanics; I would probably call it on the San Marco level. However, the game design is so poor that it wrecked the game for us. Each round, you're placing people on the board, with the aim of converting those people to their corresponding building. Unfortunately, there is no key card that tells you which people go with which building. And it's not in the rules, only on certain cards in the deck. Since this conversion is key to the game play, it is simply impossible to play.

Add to that confusing colors and a busy map where you can['t see your pieces placed sometimes, and you have a problem. All it needs is a little cheat sheet card showing which people go to which buildings and you have a game.

I play Gypsy Kings, which is basically a Samurai light, neat area control game, and really short. It's nice. Would play again.

Last was Tichu game, where I opened the first hand with a bid and made Grand Tichu, followed by another Tichu on the next round. In the end, we lost anyway. Oh well.

Sucks not having my notebook. Sucks not being able to upload my pictures.

I'll see what I can do tonight or tomorrow.


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