Our team for the evening were our old favourites Pauline, Daniela, Natalie, joined once again by Ian and Helene joining us for her first evening, plus obviously myself. Malcolm sent his apologies being called away to a committee meeting. Again for the mathematically minded you will spot that makes only six. To find out who the remaining two were you will have to read till the end (ish).
Bohnanza (Age 12+, 2-7 players, 45+ min playing time)
Our initial game of the evening was Bohnanza played at a very sedate pace and with a much more open trading system than normal (i.e. most of us had our hands face up so we could explain to Helene how the game worked and how we played the various options presented to us). This game was notable for my
inept explanation of the rules, miscounting and other forgetful activities. When combined with the open handed play this probably wasn’t the best game of Bohnanza we have ever played, not helped for the others by my amassing a significant leading score, but never mind they can’t always be brilliant games.
Sushizock im Gockelwok or Chicken Sushi (Age 8+, 2-5 players, 20 min playing time)
With Pauline needing to dash off to refuel her car, to be sure of getting home (promising to return not least in order to pick up Natalie) we picked up one of my recent additions that is intended as a fill-in game and one that would be good with younger children Sushizock im Gockelwok (yep that’s its name, roughly translated as Chicken Sushi) although I have no idea how anybody could put the concept of chickens eating sushi together but if you suspend trying to work that out then it is a cracking little game, for 5 players, that left everybody keen to play it again.
The idea is that that you collect either sushi or fishbone domino sized playing pieces by throwing 5 dice, up to three times (ala Yahtzee) with each dice having symbols rather than numbers: Blue Sushi, Red Fish bones, Blue chopsticks and Red chopsticks.
As you throw the dice you can reserve some if they show the symbol you want and re-throw the remainder to try and get as many of your chosen symbols as possible. Each domino like piece has either a sushi symbol in blue with a positive number or a fish bone symbol in red with a negative number.
Depending on your throw of the dice after three throws you can select either a sushi or a fishbone playing piece from either those laid out in the centre of the table or someone else’s pile. J
I am pleased to say that our resident head teacher (retired) and our latest recruit Helene won this amusing and fun little mathematical game convincingly after another poor explanation of the rules from me with corrections from Ian – thank you.
In time honoured fashion we broke for coffees and yet more lovely cakes from Natalie- thank you. On this occasion I believe they were coconut and cherry and I thought I would honour them with a photo, and to make Crispin jealous! However the resultant photo did not do them justice – sorry.
Saboteur (Age 8+, 3- 10 players, 30 min playing time)
With Pauline now back from her dash to the petrol station we were joined by Gwen fresh back from London and Joe who had just got back from Wimbledon and had phoned at 9pm on the off chance that he might be able to join us for our last game – good effort. With Ian, Gwen and myself having played Saboteur with some friends the night before and having thoroughly enjoyed it we thought it would work well with our Monday night group.
The idea is that you are a bunch of Dwarven Miners some of whom are good guys after the gold. Then there are the bad guys, called Saboteurs whose aim is to stop the Miners getting to the gold before the cards (tunnels and actions) run out. Maybe they are actually environmentally activists trying to stop the exploitation of the earth resources and so arguably, the good guys are the bad guys and visa versa ?!
- Dig tunnels towards the treasure (or away from it if you are a Saboteur)
- Play an action card that breaks a piece of mining equipment so stopping that player from laying any more tunnel cards.
- Play an action card that repairs a piece of mining equipment allowing either yourself or a fellow player to resume mining.
When the players gold was counted (each round the winners, be they Saboteurs or Miners, get varying amounts of gold) Daniela was the overall winner having been on the winning side in each of the 3 rounds.
With Saboteur priced at £7 and Sushizock im Gockelwok priced at under £10 the games don’t have to be expensive to be great fun.