Match Report - 23rd January 2012

From trading 'Dollies' to some very strange drawings!
Pictomania - The dragon looks very interested in the Munchies!
With sickness afflicting Crispin, the Safari delights of Tanzania detaining Malcolm and Daniella under the cosh trying to keep a busy family fully fed and watered it was down to Gwen and I to welcome our version of the young ones, Ben, Ruth and Natalie.

These youngsters all like a game with lots of interaction so when it came to selecting which board game to play what better choice than one of the modern classics, Settlers of Catan. A game we have described in previous blog posts in a lot more detail, it requires players to actively trade natural resources with each other in order to advance their civilisation of roads, towns and cities.
Settlers of Catan - The players with lots of cards!
Playing with the 5/6 player expansion there was plenty of land for us to colonise although by the end of the game the island felt pretty cramped. Whilst Ben was busy accruing sheep (fondly termed “dollies” since he first played this game with us around the time Dolly was cloned) he was also keeping a watchful eye on my obvious progress and zealously pointed a very unwelcome spotlight on my advancement towards the 10 victory points required to win.
Needless to say this left me somewhat handicapped and increasingly aggrieved! Ruth having not played the game before was feeling her way whilst Natalie was trying to avoid drawing too much attention to her significant iron ore production capability. Gwen, always a keen competitor, kept a low profile and, I feel, was able to slip stream in behind me and profit from Ben’s negative publicity program – not that I’m bitter or twisted you understand!
Settlers of Catan - The game board with the 5/6 player extension
Suffice to say that his machinations resulted in Natalie’s interception of my road (at that point the longest on the island) thus depriving me of the Longest Road card and the 2 victory points it gives. Then, in her next turn Gwen (the dark horse) managed to not only build a road section (thereby acquiring MY Longest Road card) but also to convert one of her 3 towns into a 3rd city. This meant that with the University development card she had quietly acquired, quite early on, she actually EXCEEDED the 10 points necessary point to win - really adding insult to my sense of injury, Ben!! Note 1 to self – must cross Ben off my Christmas pressie list.

So time to drown my sorrows in coffee and munchies – again Natalie had come up trumps this time baking us some deliciously moist and tasty Carrot cake buns, topped off very artistically with handmade icing sugar carrots. Note 2 to self – suspect Ben knows it is Gwen who does the Christmas shopping!
A close up of one of the munchies
With the debris cleared out of the way I felt the team might enjoy Pictomania, one of the CGE games brought back from last year’s Essen trip (reviewed in more detail here ). This is a game that might be described as Pictionary on steroids since it calls on each player to draw one of 42 images whilst simultaneously working out which of the other 41 possible images their opponents are each drawing. It is a game that is both highly amusing and high tension as the guessing stops when the 4th player in a 5 player game has laid their last Guessing Card. Note 3 to self – no justice in this world; proved beyond doubt by Ben’s undisputed supremacy in this game.
You can see below the cards we had to work with during one round of play:
Pictomania - The cards relating to the drawings. But which drawings relate to which cards?
along with our sophisticated drawings:
Pictomania - The drawings!
Pictomania is a light fun game that got a definite “thumbs up” from our group of players.

More photo's from the evening can be seen here.

If you would like to try some of the games talked about on this blog come along to our next event at the Blue Anchor, Crowborough is in two weeks time on Sunday 29th January starting at 7pm - £1 per head. More details can be seen on our Facebook Page Social Gamers - Crowborough

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