Session Report: September 29, 2003
Games Played: The Great Brain Robbery, RoboRally
Gamers: Mike, Mark, Lewis, Eric, Chip, Vitas
Thanks to Mark for hosting, thanks to Lewis for giving me a ride.
GREAT BRAIN ROBBERY (1:14 + 0:07)
My recollection from the last time I played this game is that nothing really matters until players get to the engine room, at which point there is a massive brawl for the best brain.
With this in mind, I raced towards the front of the train, leaving a trail of cheese and brains in my wake. Having installed a brain with a run of 4 was advantageous, although I only had an IQ of 5 at the time.
Once in the engine room, I was fortunate enough to install a brain with a high hit number (7), with which I was confident I could beat Mark (with his 125 IQ brain) and Eric (with his 135 IQ brain). I did beat both of them, but Vitas rushed into the engine room and stopped the train with his IQ 190 brain.
In hindsight, I'm glad I moved so quickly, as this "45-minute game" could have taken up much more time. I enjoyed playing this game, and I'll play it occasionally.
ROBO-RALLY (1:20 + 0:15 rules and setup)
We played with two boards and three checkpoints (starting at checkpoint 1). We played with unlimited lives, starting virtual robots, but returning to play real. Each player started with an option.
I made the fatal mistake of knowingly placing myself under a crusher right before it went off. For some reason (temporary insanity?) I thought that it was like a laser beam and, as I hadn't taken any damage thus far, I figured I could afford to take a hit or two (or eight). My delusions of invulnerability cost me any chance of competing, but did provide for some cheap entertainment.
Mike planned very well, and deserved his win, although he was lucky with the options.
I feel the options are unbalanced in this game; they seem to be either very useful or completely worthless. I would argue that a game without options would be just as interesting without some needless complexity (and rules-confusion).
To me, RoboRally is like an abusive relationship. I'm always excited about playing it, but afterwards I feel kind of used and resentful. I'm sure there's a good configuration of this game, but I'm not sure what it is, or if I could get anyone to play with me. I'd like to try an option-less 2-team capture-the-flag version of this game.
PLUG: Gaming at my house in Maynard this Thursday. Email me with questions or to RSVP.