UK Games Expo 2011 – Saturday, Day 2

An interesting dinner and then more games!

The early morning drone of cars going past our window meant that Mark and I were up early enough to go for a stroll in the sunshine before breakfast.

Back at the hotel we shared a breakfast table with two Sci-Fi figure producers who had a trade stand at the show. We had an interesting conversation but one particular anecdote stuck in my mind; one of them said that his family’s game had been Monopoly, he loved it one family member even knew the mortgage values for all the properties, then, almost he commented on how his sister hated it because of the history and how it made her feel! It obviously put me in mind of our recent article
Why Games Work In Some Families and Not Others.
Photo from the Family Zone

The rest of the day became a happy blur because the Imagination Gaming Family Zone was seemingly besieged by people all wanting to play our games. No thought of lunch (something unheard of for those that know me) we wrapped up around 5-ish after an absolutely fantastic day. Details of the Family Zone can be read here.

On the way out of the show I did manage to pick up my three game purchases (made with the help of my man on the inside on the Bring and Buy, Tim - thank you) of the show Dungeon Lords £12, Fabula £10 and Terra £5. Dungeon Lords I have heard good things about from Paul Grogan who is closely connected with the publisher CGE and I love the theme but I have been a bit nervous that it may be too heavy for my (and more importantly my wife’s tastes), but at £12 it was a bargain! Fabula likewise was at a significant discount to its full price and mentioned positively in during my conversation with Steve Berger, I feel it is one that could work well around literacy and creativity with children, as commented on in one of my previous blog postings. Terra is a card game I thought might be fun and interesting with children on a vaguely ecological theme.

Tim and I had agreed to freshen up quickly and then meet up for dinner. Whilst we were debating where to eat we got into conversation with four other Expo attendees who were having the same conversation so we all headed out together. As the meal progressed it transpired that one of our number was Kyle the designer behind “Braggart” (a game reviewed elswhere on my blog) which, next day, would take the “best new card game” award another was Andy Hopwood the designer of Niche, Mijnlieff (an award winning game at last year’s show) and his latest creation ZOOM ZOOM KA-BOOM, plus Heather and Paul. We had a very pleasant meal with lots of seat swapping to facilitate conversations culminating in a couple of games of Brawl.
Heather and Kyle playing Brawl
I often ask people I meet at these events what their favourite game is and get answers that in the main are games I have heard of and kind of expect. But Heather was a surprise, a lovely lady who started answering the question with Pandemic in number one slot (no great surprise) and then Brawl a short fast passed fighting game for up to six players which she needless to say had in her bag. Having soundly beaten me at it she went on to play Kyle who put up much more of a fight. Strange the games we like at times, but then the good news for the industry is that we all like different games for different reasons. In Heather’s case it wasn’t so much the fighting as the fact that it was an incredibly fast game, yet she hadn’t heard of Pit and I wondered if Ligretto might also be up her street.

Chris and Sam during our game of Archaeology
Returning to the playing rooms at the Strathalan, Tim and I hooked up with Chris (Unboxed) and Sam for a game of Archaeology (a card game themed on collecting treasures from ancient Egypt) not the most attractive game but one in my collection and a good filler that I am sure my group will like when we get it to the table. This was followed by 1655 - Habemus Papam a game I had been given at Christmas and was keen to play. The theme being the election of a pope. A game Tim manfully took on the challenge of teaching the rest of us (having played it a couple of times, but a long time ago). Not to everybody’s taste but I love the theme and am really looking forward to getting a chance to play this with Gwen.

And so to bed.

More images from the day can be seen here

Friday, Day 1, Part 1 - Meeting up with the UK Gaming Media Network Team here with more images here

Friday, Day 1, Part 2 - An opportunity to play the Dungeon Petz protype by CGE here with more images here

Sunday, Day 3 - The final day plus links to many other views and reports here with more images here

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