Wednesday, 2 July 2014

The Case of the Missing Gamers

A grand total of 26 27 29 27 attendees this week, the ever helpful Ewan has got a new clicker app for his phone so he can count everyone in. That's right. You're now facing the ignominy of being counted like cattle. There was even talk on the river balcony of branding people as they enter.

We had a bit of trouble fitting some latecomers in this week - arriving just after 8, games had started, and the couple of spare slots available had already been filled by late, but not quite too late comers. Tricky. It's always good to have a table or two with some spare seats for those latecomers, but where you already have newcomers engaged it can be unfair to just up sticks and start something else. Despite being reassured there were some quick games being played if they wanted to stick around, after a quick look around they disappeared. I had a valiant attempt at tracking them down, but alas, they were missing.

This week we had Dungeon Petz, Nations, Betrayal at House on the Hill, Small World, Tzolkin and Mission Red Planet first up for play. Nations played in better time this week - although still took up the whole evening, and we got to find out that the game is kind of punishing. Poor Tim managed to fare badly in the first age, and then proceeded to always fall short in the following ages. It seems that a bit like Agricola, the game can punish you for not getting your ducks in a row and then you flail around at the rear of the scoring without a lot of hope of coming back.
A room full of gamers downstairs - 10 minutes from closing !

A flaw ? There is debate about whether games that have a harsh competitive penalty / elimination / elimination in all but name in them are "good design" or not. Good or bad depends on the mindset of the players. But whatever your mindset, it's understandable playing a 3 hour game without much hope of winning after the first 30 minutes is probably not great.

For all of that, everyone seemed to enjoy the Nation-ing, and Richard the IV secured a win - by I think a single point.

Betrayal at House on the Hill was the noisy table. They then played I can only imagine an equally noisy game of King of Tokyo, followed by an even more noisy Dobble.

Bohnanza - I'll trade you Stink for Wax ! Ok.
And what about the beans ? Ah ha ha... ehhh.
On the relatively subdued table over from the noise, Small World was given a whirl with a final tally of incredibly close scores, everyone being within a single point or two of everyone else. Tom won. Again. He's making a habit of it - remember, if you see Tom at your table, and you haven't played the game you are playing before - gang up on him. It's only fair. Small world was finished with a dessert of Bohnanza, which Tom valiantly tried to win again, but Ewan managed to tie him for it. Good job Ewan.

No idea who won Dungeon Petz upstairs. No obvious Zoo Poo Barons. Shame. I think Ed should come back from the wilds of Not Norwich and show them what the game is truly about. Poo.

Sam blasted to a win in Tzolkin. His first win at Tzolkin. But don't let that fool you, Sam has played a fair few games of the cog turner. Tzolkin definitely rewards experience. They finished this main course with some Skull and Roses and Love Letter.

As for my table, a repeat of other weeks, a fine win for Sam III at Mission Red Planet, a ruby filled win for me at Istanbul, and finally a Biker Gang victory for Sam III at Skull and Roses.

Alex who was new to NoBoG had a bit of a trial by fire, his first turn at Mission Red Planet found his astronauts completely shut out as all ships took off, and his turn was wasted - followed in the next turn by his only ship being blown up by saboteurs. Rough. Needless to say he came last. Oh dear.


Mr Bond said...

We have three Sams?!

Sam W said...

A sandwich

Sam W said...

You may spot me playing with my statue in last weeks kingsburg picture

Minitrue said...

Three Sams. Perhaps we should just assign people a nickname / codename as they enter the pub instead.

Hmm. We need a gamer name generator...

Minitrue said...

Actually we have four Sams - but I don't recall seeing the fourth Sam on Tuesday. I might be wrong - I wasn't specifically counting Sams, it just happened.

Sam W said...

Still getting over the indignity of being called Little Sam, It was a tough first school... I was also blessed with the nickname Frodo at college, doesnt really work without the hair now though

Peter Chinkin said...

It's ok Admiral, we've got a gamer-namer in our midst.