Rachel is scholar and residence in Dallas this shabbat (not a coincidence). She landed in Dallas at 1:00, at the same time that I found my good friend Chris Brooks. Chris let Rachel crash for an hour in his room, and then I introduced Rachel to Aldie, Derk, Mischa, and Ted. Then the shul Rabbi picked us up and drove us to our hosts.
Dallas has a lovely Jewish Ortho community and it's growing.
Tobago: An Essen game, this is a neat game, light but doesn't feel insubstantial. You play cards that narrow down the possible locations of treasures on an island, and then you run to pick them up, splitting the values between the clue providers and the picker upper - but not simply splitting. I will write a lot more about it, but I enjoyed it, nearly completely. It had one irksome mechanism, which is the one where you can collect tokens that give you extra turns, and then spend them all at once. Not a good thing. But a minor problem, and easily corrected.
I lost pretty soundly.
Dominion Intrigue x 2: Only DI cards, and I learned to hate the Saboteur (and won against it anyway, so there). I won one, and lost the second.
Prototype 1: I'll fill in the guy's name later when I find it: he's from New Orleans, and the game was like hex using d4s, where you kill two nearly adjacent d4s by putting one equally their total in between them. The game was flawed, unfortunately, and the designer agreed with me.
Triumvirate: A small self-published game, I wasn't thrilled with it, though I only played a third of a game - it felt longer, though it was only 15 minutes. The problem is that it was very repetitive. I also felt like I got screwed with luck, but recognize that I may not have played optimally to counter the screwage. You might like it if you're looking for a light card game reminiscent of a trick-taking game.
Prototype 2: Micha's prototype, the game worked, at least, but there were some physical problems to work out, and I'm not enthused about the game play, yet. But it's mature enough that I think it could work out. I'm hoping to give him some constructive feedback on Saturday night.
Also, I forgot to mention yesterday that I played Age of Scheme, a fairly clean train + stock + merger game, not as frustrating as some similar efforts (where you cannot catch up if you're screwed), and it plays fairly quickly, too. The name is a deal-killer, however. It was remade into something sensible, I believe.