Tuesday, 12 November 2013

PR for Beginners

Apologies for the lack of updates here. John has gone to Lincolnshire for his annual holiday. Not a man to idly while away his time, he spends ten days each autumn, on a poultry farm, sexing chickens. Apparently, he finds sorting the little balls of fluff and sending the unfortunate male chicks off to a quick death very therapeutic.  He took a quick break in his holiday to remind me that I was shirking my duties and hadn't updated the blog. Don’t worry, John, I shall remedy that now. You can get back to that tray of tiny birds that need electrocuting.

Last Tuesday was Bonfire night and it would seem that many of our regulars were up for some pyrotechnics as only nine emerged from the chilled smoke-laden darkness to play games in the welcoming warmth of the Ribs of Beef. And how they were welcomed! Pete had found a cheesecake on offer in the Coop and brought it down for us lucky sods to enjoy. Thanks Pete.

On the games front there was a clamouring for the classic role selection game Puerto Rico, which was played with the full complement of five. I taught Nicky, Fletch, Richard and Clive. One experienced player against four noobs? Those that know Puerto Rico will assume that I won, with Clive sitting to my right probably handing me victory. Not so. Well, OK, as the only experienced Puerto Rico player I did win, but this was mostly down to the new guys playing a couple of exploratory rounds early on and not knowing about the game’s pacing, rather than the seating order. Nicky (who sat to my left) did really well with an aggressive building strategy, ending just a couple of VPs behind my mixed shipping strategy. For those of you wondering why I'm mentioning seating order – one of the biggest complaints about Puerto Rico is that seating order really matters and one inexperienced player can hand victory to the player sitting to their left. Much of the game is about selecting a role that not only helps you, but helps the other players the least. If the player to your right constantly chooses the Craftsman (which produces goods for all) then on your turn you’ll get first dibs on using the newly produced goods to enter the empty Trading House to earn cash or fill the empty Goods Ships to the detriment of the other players. I've seen it happen and heard moans of despair from players further around the seating plan, but on Tuesday, perhaps because (almost) everyone was inexperienced at Puerto Rico this wasn't an issue. Or maybe everyone was just having fun and didn't care too much about perceived injustices. Or maybe everyone at NoBoG is a savvy and hardened gamer and would rather burn on a bonfire rather than make a generous play that in any way benefited another player. Apart from Pete who would give everyone cheesecake. Cheers for that again, Pete. Anyway, nice to see Puerto Rico make a return.

Suburbia was maxed out with four players on the other table.  I can’t say what happened in Suburbia. It’s not a secret I just didn’t pay much attention. I do know they had two games of it. In the second game, Rich looked to be leading with an industrial complex of mighty proportions, dwarfing Sam, Pete and Robin’s efforts.

We finished the evening, as is now almost customary, with Resistance: Avalon. Myself, Sam and Clive did a terrible job as the evil dudes and the good guys with Rich as Merlin and Pete as Sir Percival rode home to victory.


Minitrue said...

Excellent blog post Mr Bond. All things being well I will be back next week with new things to play.

Peter Chinkin said...

Here's a more thorough report of our Avalon session: http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/13941305#13941305

Mr Bond said...

Nice report, Peter. I've reposted for our regulars to enjoy.