SR: WAGGers - 10/27 - Citadelles, Taj Mahal, Sumera and more
- Sorry for the long delay in getting this out. We had
6 intrepid gamers for the 2nd edition of the Wakefield
Area Gamers, homemade chili and fresh brownies and
cookies. Did people come for food or games? It must
have been both, because leftovers didn't exist and
people didn't leave to 2am!!!
Attending: Walter, Jeff Tolleson, Rich Goldbaum,
Alison, Andrew and myself. We missed Pat who
cancelled due to non-gaming related reasons. Send him
an email and he can give you all of the details I'm
Games on the Table: Citadelles - the variant, Taj
Mahal, Vinci, Sumera, Princes of Florence, New England
Railways (walters game), and almost SPI's Spies.
Spies er I mean Citadelles: After having some dinner,
there were five of us who started to look over and
prepare Spies an SPI game that is very un SPI like
with fairly short rules, short playtime (under 2
hours) and a German feel. Just as we were getting
started, the game queen herself arrived so Spies was
canned and Citadelles was the game of choice. We
played with the variant that I described last week in
the Malden session report. Here everyone has a 2nd
character, utilizing a 2nd set developed by Bruno.
After some initial confusion and rules explanation we
started. Walter felt that the game was not an
improvement on the original and felt that it was
confusing. We steamed along with everyone if
reasonable contention. I finally built my 8th
building and saw Jeff trade one of his buildings for
mine on his turn with the Diplomat - a new power. He
gave me a lousy 1 pt. building and took a key purple
one from me worth 5 which was the difference in the
game for me.
Scores: Jeff 28, Alison 26, Rich 25, Craig 25, Walter
23 and Andrew 20
Ratings: Jeff 7, Alison 7.5, Rich 7.5, Craig 7.5,
Walter 5, Andrew 6.5.
Andrew felt this was an improvement over the original,
but given his low rating of it, that doesn't take
much. I'll continue to tweak the rules and options.
I received some good suggestions from Andrew, Alison
et al. But keep in mind this is not intended to
replace the game, but be an optional variant much like
Seafarers is an optional variant to Settlers.
Taj Mahal: We broke into two groups with Jeff,
Alison, and I travelling to India for Taj Mahal. This
was a tough and hard fought game all the way through
with lead changes and close scores to the bitter end.
Alison tried to play without ever doing what she has
affectionately named - the wussy pull - where a player
decides not to play the round at all and bails getting
an extra card and first pull. She succeeded in doing
so which meant she pursued small incremental gains in
each region. This largely paid off as she got most of
her tiles/castles for fairly cheap. Jeff and I on the
other hand bailed two or three times each and butted
heads a couple of times with 6+ card battles. Jeff
got some early commodity tiles and was light on the
network. I was stronger on the network and was trying
to get selective commodity tiles to maximize their
effect. I also had the +2 wild card the longest. The
last round came and Alison grabbed the Taj tile while
I got a few key placements to make for a nice castle
score and Jeff took the commodity tile after I took
away a key castle position from him. I had a long
suit of 6 and three wild cards while Jeff had a fairly
long suit as well and Alison had a short suit of 3 I
Scores - Craig 52, Alison 51, Jeff 48 (told you it was
Rankings Craig 10, Alison 10, Jeff 9
Sumera: Walter, Andrew and Rich tackled Babylonian
tribal expansion in Sumera at the other table. I hope
One of them will post some comments
Scores: Rich 80+, Andrew 60+, Walter 45ish
Ratings: Rich 8, Andrew 7.5, Walter 6
Vinci: Alison, Andrew and I pulled out Vinci next. I
can't remember a lot of the details other than Andrew
took a great opening pair of tiles - Mountaineering
and Shipbuilding and expanded to the max and kept it
around in decline long enough to get a good lead.
Alison slowly chipped away while I was a solid third
place the whole time. We played with VP secret to
help ameliorate the endgame problem. This largely
worked as we supspected Andrew was the clear leader
the whole time, but weren't 100% sure. In the end
Andrew did win (we played to 125 points), but a few
more turns and Alison might have surpassed him. I
like this game, but man am I terrible at it.
Scores: Andrew 136, Alison 130, Craig 102 (told you I
Ratings: Andrew 8, Alison 8, Craig 7.5
New England Railways: Walter, Jeff and Rich tackled
Walter's hopefully soon to be published game. I don't
have details or scores or ratings. I don't believe
they finished the game. Any info would be great.
Princes of Florence: Walter departed leaving five for
one last game. Princes of Florence was chosen by all
so we started building our courts. This was Rich's
first play so he started a bit slowly as he figured
out the values of the auctioned items. Jeff jumped
out to an early lead along with Alison while Rich and
I were the last two out of the starting blocks.
Midgame found me with a fairly large lead and everyone
else bunched together with Rich in the rear. Going
into the last turn, I held a 10 point lead or so, but
knew my last work would just clear the bar while bonus
cards would make several other works worth 20+. Sure
enough, I went first and sprinted to 52 points. Then
I saw Jeff blow by me with a work that was over 30
points. After the round Rich, Andrew and Alison also
plunked down Prestige cards to pass me leaving me in
dead last. I made the comment that every time I play
this game with Alison, she beats me by a point. Well
the scores below speak for themselves. This is my
second favorite game of the year behind Taj Mahal. I
don't think anything will knock it from that perch.
Scores: Jeff 63, Andrew 55, Rich 54, Alison 53, Craig
Ratings: 8.5, Andrew 7.5, Rich 8.5, Alison 8.5, Craig
That's all for now. Next WAGGers session is next
Friday nite 11/10. The first two WAGG session have
been great - I expect the third won't dissappoint.
Hope to see Pat and Dave back at the table and Matthew
at the table for the first time finally.
Craig W. Massey
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