Wednesday, 23 September 2009


Matt had been threatening to play VOC for some time and last night he got his wish, James, Luke, Tash and Jack joined him in a game that saw them effectively colouring in pieces of laminate. After almost 3 hours nobody won, or the game won…. and it had come down to the fact there hadn’t been enough purple or something. It all sounded quiet bizarre especially as Luke and Shannon shouted at each other for not understanding points of the compass or for taking duff deals. Still a good value purchase from Essen a few years back as I’m sure matt could use the box as a doorstop or paperweight or something.

I played Tikal with Jimmy, Rich and Pete. The lead swung between different players but right at the end Jimmy got an awesome score, Pete played last and was able to squeak to victory. Both me and Rich ended up off the pace paying the price for lack of final diversification. This is a superb AP game that can take a while between turns. It suffers if players take too long to make decisions or to crunch numbers and last nights group played this game at a regular pace. We finished in a reasonable time but occasionally players thought carefully before acting, a nice and necessary compromise and all players enjoyed the tight competition as a result of sometimes considered and sometimes haphazard play. Tikal has more confrontation in it than I would usually like, players compete for majority in regions, but as the board is seeded and improved by the players themselves it often boils down to judgment calls at critical times and those battles that result. Players can avoid conflict but that seldom wins the game and the balance and timing of a turn is critical. Score early and it could be cheaper, score later and you may score more. The rules are relatively straight forward and like so many euro games once playing they all fit into place. We all felt that Tikal was a superb game and like always wondered why it always seams to be ages since it last got on the table. I still need to play Java again (last time was 3yrs+ ago) and mexica, the more accessible of the mask games works well in our group. Torres sometimes also gets played but recently we have been avoiding AP games. Hopefully we will dust down another such gem next week.

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