Wednesday, 19 December 2012

Year End

Firstly, a word about Christmas.

The next two Tuesdays fall on Christmas day and New Years day and therefore there will be no NoBoG sessions for the next two weeks.

Gaming is slated to start up again on the 8th January.

Given that, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all the irregulars and blog lurkers.

 And now the session report.

A stupendous six turned up for last night's board game action, including new person Ewan.

Terra Mystica and Archipelago were placed on the table, Pete leading the way with Mystica challenging Tom and Nicky in a duel of settlement building. When I looked in on this halfway through the game seemed to be developing nicely, everyone had two separate settlements growing and things looked pretty tight.

Meanwhile myself, Bondy and Ewan sat down with Archipelago, and with Ewan taking the not exactly short list of rules in his stride, colonisation of the new world began.

At first the settlement of the islands seemed very straight forward - exploration was a breeze and numbers of excess workers was miniscule. However, things were not going to be so tranquil for long. Strange things were going on in the markets. Some resources were drained dry, whilst the wood and pineapple market had a glut. So much of a glut that it was producing excess workers. But still, the colony progressed. More exploration, more excess workers.

Excess workers were now causing a real problem - creating masses of rebellious citizens at the end of every turn. I had capped out my population, Bondy was close to capping out and Ewan didn't have a lot of spare either. So there was no way to get rid of all the excess workers ! Meanwhile the markets bloated still in two categories pushed more free workers onto the scene, creating a perfect storm.

All those layabouts had one result - rebellious citizens matched population. The colony teetered on the brink of revolt. A panic run of boat building and fishing occurred - everyone vying for boats and fish with the suspicion that something boaty or fishy was to be had in the victory points. With the population so close to collapse, minds were focused and a raft of activities begun to try and get things in control. But was it too late ? Even with a round of focused colony management, and the expenditure of all the explore tokens from all players to try and help out, the rebels were tipped for revolution.

A series of unbelievable crisis cards at the end of the round saw rebel numbers dip down briefly - just enough for the colony to survive another round, and possibly end the game !

But then calamity struck. With things so delicately balanced a stone crisis demanded attention - a resource that was painfully short, the markets bare, none in player stock, and exploration tiles already near exhaustion.

Goods were thrown into harbours, governor mansions stormed and the colony was lit with the fires of uprising. Everyone lost. Totting up theoretical points it seemed Bondy would have won with enough fish and cows to take second place in those categories, churches to take first place, and crucially a couple of VP earning cards to give him around 10VP. Ewan would have been second, getting first in both fish and cows to net 7VP and myself in third, earning a pitiful 5VP for coming last in cows and fish, and second in churches. My beautiful explore tokens were all burnt on trying vainly to keep a lid on the colony, which otherwise would have netted me another 3VP. In the end Bondys VP cards would have made the difference.

Another great game of Archipelago - different again, this time the imbalanced markets sunk us, our capability to deal with rebels and workers in very short supply.

Finally a game of Saboteur ended the evening, the industrious Tom hauling off the greatest cache of gold with 8, Pete coming in second with a sack stuffed with 7 gold.

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