I'll be there. Seems like we have a bit much for Merchants & Marauders, though.
--- In email@example.com, "Richard Pardoe" <RPardoe@...> wrote:
> LAST WEEK:
> Ben, Dave and Tim joined Rich for games and we opened up MERCHANTS & MARAUDERS â" a pirate themed game from Z-Man, but with a bit of a checkered past. It first appeared on BGG back in 2006 with the name Age of Piracy from Pro-Ludo. A long drawn out production process saw first the name change and then the publisher. And now it is general release. Enough trivia. In the game, players are captains of ships sailing around the Caribbean. As the title suggests, one can just be a merchant, buying and selling goods hoping to earn gold and glory that way. Or one can became a marauder, plundering merchant ships (both player and non-player) hoping to earn gold and glory that way. The gold is useful to upgrade ships, acquire more goods, etc â" it is the glory that determines the gameâs winner. In addition to gaining glory from the aforementioned activities, one can also claim glory by completing missions on the board as well as confirming the truth behind certain rumours heard whispered in various ports. Component-wish, it is a game driven by a ship board (to mark the quality of oneâs ship) and lots of cards that provide the detail. Yes â" it is possible to think Arkham Horror with a new theme and less cooperation.
> With any such immersive game, there are a lot of little niggles in the rules to remember and play out correctly. And we had our share of mistakes as we played. The game suggests a playing time of 45 minutes per player when experienced and I think that is a fair assessment. We were a bit slow to start, but the pace picked up as we got familiar with the various actions. But we couldnât finish the game in the time available. Tim (the sole marauder in the game) had a good lead in Glory points having gotten some good plunders of merchant ships as well as defeating Richâs captain as time in the game session expired. (As an aside, I think we forgot to award Tim a Dutch bounty for attacking a Dutch non-pirate! â" that might have given Tim bounties from all nationâs except perhaps England.) Rich was second having done some very lucrative trades (and having a hold full of gold â" hence the reason why Tim targeted the ship. I should have upgraded the ship to sink the gold into a new vessel rather than have it available for plunder.) Dave and Ben didnât have as many Glory points, but we were only about a third of the way into the game when we called it.
> Having read the FAQ, I didnât see any real mistakes we made with one exception: One can always dump existing cargo to get new cargo up to oneâs cargo limit. (This would have impacted Tim as we didnât allow him to dump existing cargo when plundering merchants.) I hope with the learning experience under our belts, we can get this one out to the table again so that we can play the full game.
> THIS WEEK:
> Well, obviously another crack at Merchants and Marauders might be a good idea. Or we can try something else first. Who can attend and what might of interest to play?
> Wednesday Night, 18:30 to ~21:00
> My house in San Ramon
> (Contact me off-list if you need directions)
> - Rich