Match Report 28th July 2010

With plans advancing for our first “Social Afternoon With Games” (Monday 2nd August 2pm ‘til 5pm in St Mary’s parish hall) it was time for a quick planning session with some of our evening gamers who have offered their support (and were available) plus two younger supporters of this exercise.

With the planning done we inevitably thought it a good idea to have a game or two or indeed four, albeit none were very heavy or serious.

Straw (Age 6+, 2-6 players 30 minutes playing time)
The Straw box artwork
We started with Straw, a new addition and filler type game which has beautiful cards on very good quality card. The idea being to place objects on the camels back without breaking it. Each object has a positive or negative (if a magical object) weight with some cards altering the direction of play, typically when you least want it. The looser of a round is the person that

Internet Games Can Help The World!

A photo of Jane McGonigal taken during one of her presentations
I watched the video entitled Gaming (meaning on-line gaming) Can Make A Better World? Presented by Jane McGonigal (as referenced in the thru-the-portal Vol 2) from The Institute for the Future. The numbers she cites if correct are quite jaw dropping.

Her contention in the presentation is that, as a game designer, she would like to make it “as easy to save the world in real life as it is in on-line games” and she goes on to describe how in the virtual world, heroic or epic adventures are undertaken all the time; posing the question “so what would happen if

Match Report 19th July 2010

The team line up for this week was denuded by the absence of Pauline(at a BBQ), Natalie still recovering from her graduation celebrations – well done (actually working with a judge this week but recovering from a party seemed more interesting), Josh up north with his girlfriend, Alex still in Kerry discovering what the Irish mean when they say it’s a ‘soft day’, day after day, after day, after day…., Ben briefly back in the country but with other commitments, and finally Helene having run out of time, after a day out and finding that there are sometimes just not enough hours in the day.

On the positive front our numbers this time were augmented for our second game by two youngsters we found loitering around in Daniella’s house looking for a game It seemed churlish of us adults to be playing such fun games and deny the opportunity to them. It might be analogised to showing

BP, Monty Python & Other Musings From This Week

Box artwork for Offshore Oil Strike courtesy of Boardgamegeek
I spotted an article in the Metro about a game from the 1970’s called “Offshore Oil Strike Europe” that had BP branding on the front of the box with the first player to earn $120 million being the winner, I wonder what that figure would be today? Not surprisingly (certainly in the light of recent events in the US) the game had hazard cards with the cost for one in particular being a mere $1 million (‘Blow out! Rig damaged. Oil slick clean up costs. Pay $1 million’). Even allowing for inflation then BP would

Match Report 5th July

The dangerous 'beastie caged in
With the continued renovation work going on at our place the group was kindly invited to meet at Pauline’s with the added benefits that this is the home of possibly the best munchies in the UK and a unique and very cute beastie.

Apologies had been received from no less than 5 people on this occasion, Malcolm visiting his sister, Alex in Marseille, Julia working hard with American clients who seem to think it unreasonable to work in line with our time zone, Joe having finished exams is already hard at work on the coursework for next year’s exams and Josh travelling back south. Attendees were Ian (now the Black Knight), Helene, Crispin (Now Brother Crispin member of a new order of monks, the Crisponians - more on this and the Black Knight later).

Sushizock im Gockelwok (Age 8+, 2-5 players, 20 min playing time)
We managed three games on this particular outing. Starting with Sushizock im Gockelwok as Natalie and Daniella had not yet arrived. This simple game explained in previous posts saw the big plus numbers captured early and in my case a balancing pile of low negative numbers, things were set fair and then it all went wrong.

Your scribe crying into his drink as he tries to re-build his pile of + tiles
Ian - launched three (others may have been involved but in the session with my counsellor I could only remember his dubious activities) unprovoked chopstick raids, not only on my pile of plus tiles leaving me with none and then to add insult to injury he took one of my minus one tiles leaving me with no alternative but to take the remaining minus four tile. The net result of this

Stabcon Summer 2010 - A Board Game Conference

Gamers at Stabcon Summer 2010
Well as I race back from Stockport (courtesy of Virgin trains) and set pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) to record my visit north; I had a very interesting and thoroughly enjoyable evening (thank you Tim for the invite) talking to stalwarts in the hobby and gaming world. The summer Stabcon (Stockport 2-4th July 2010) is one of many games events run all over the country, some like this one twice a year. Interestingly they do no advertising for the event but, based on previous events would expect to get at least 200 gamers (both locals and foreigners like myself, from down south or further afield – American and Welsh;

Stabcon Summer 2010 - The Games

So to the games I played whilst at Stabcon.

Kleine Fische (or Duck Duck Bruce) (Age 7+, 2-4 players, 15 to 20 mins) 
Cards from Kleine Fische
Played with Andy, his wife Mary and her visiting sister Kristina (over from the US), Tim and myself. Kristina must be very dedicated not only has she flown thousands of miles to help her sister but is also now being entranced (I think this is a fair description or is it brainwashed!) by the delights of board games. Having never played them before I think she is building a list of those she would like for her own collection when she gets backhome, if recollection hasn’t failed me this would include Stone Age and Shadow Hunters (see below).

Kleine Fische is a simple and delightful card game where you collect as many fish as possible. You keep turning over cards until either you elect to stop in which case they go into your hand or you get a duplicate fish (normally caused by the desire to have just one more fish, also called