[SR] MVGA 2003-11-13
- MVGA meets Thursday nights at 7:00 in the
Masonic Hall in Holliston, on Route 16 just
east of the center of town.
We welcome visitors. We'll even
waive the $3.00 fee for your first visit.
Roll call: Walt, Eric, Evan, Rich, Dan,
WYATT EARP (Dan, Eric, Evan)
Three of us arrived early, so we started
Wyatt Earp with the understanding that
we'd finish whatever hand we were playing
when a fourth player walked in and score
at that point. Rich came in during the
first hand. Final scores: Eric 14,
Evan 7, Dan 6.
Eric's rating: 8.
PUERTO RICO (Rich, Dan, Eric, Evan)
Evan is fairly new to Puerto Rico, but he
holds his end up just fine. We played
with the original buildings and he just
destroyed us with a lot of shipping and
a respectable amount of building. Eric
probably ended the game too soon by being
Mayor too often.
Ship Bldg Bonus Total
---- ---- ---- ----
Evan 25 16 6 47
Eric 13 20 6 39
Dan 11 14 7 32
Rich 17 14 31
Eric's Rating: 10.
ATLANTIC STAR (Rich, Dan, Eric, Evan)
Atlantic Star is a re-theming of Showmanager. The new theme is less
convincing than the old one (we still still shout "I can't
work with these actors" as we clear the board,) but it's
fundamentally the same game.
This week's game was unusual. The Baltic Sea cruise (which
received one star and would normally have been the source of many
loans) closed in a hurry, so that only Rich was able to take a loan
from it. There was no five-star cruise (people played spoiler with
the first cruise in each sea.) There was some drama toward the end,
but Rich "cruised" to victory based on his strong early
Final scores: Rich 53, Eric 49, Evan 42, Dan 24
Eric's rating: 7. For me, Showmanager is an 8 while Atlantic
Star is only a 7, based on the less appropriate theme.
MAMMOTH HUNTERS (Evan, Dan, Eric)
This was the first playing of Mammoth Hunters (the English version of
Alan Moon and Aaron Weissblum's Eiszeit) at MVGA. A few of the
MVGA regulars had played it elsewhere, but they were unimpressed
because of the sense that it was too much of a "bash the
leader" game. We decided to try it with 3 to ameliorate this
People talk about this being a long game, but we played dark cards
freely and it didn't take more than an hour. The rules are clear
and we had no problems with the mechanisms of play. Dan jumped out
to an early lead, with Eric getting the first glacier placement, but
somehow there was no way to bash Dan, so Eric took out a regiment of
Evan's troops instead. This suggests that Dan was playing better
than his opponents.
Eric and Evan tried to catch up, but Dan slipped out of our clutches
each time and maintained his lead for a well-deserved win. Final
scores: Dan 43, Eric 37, Evan 37.
Eric's rating: 7. I didn't have much feeling of control,
though I suspect Dan had more than I did. On the other hand, the
game was interesting and moved quickly. Our first playing certainly
did not support the "leader bashing" criticism. I suggest
playing this with 3 players as you learn it.
CARCASSONNE (Rich, Scott, Walt)
While Mammoth Hunters was underway, the other three players sat down
to Carcassonne with the River and the Expansion. Scott completed two
large cities with Cathedrals; he shared one with Rich and got one
all to himself. Walt did yeoman's work staying close, but the two
cities made the difference.
Final scores: Scott 152, Rich 130, Walt 129
Eric's rating: 7. I enjoy Carcassonne, but I have only played a
few times. Games that are as tactical as I perceive Carcassonne to
be are not usually my favorite games.
CITADELS (Eric, Dan, Walt, Evan, Scott, Rich)
We finished the night with a 6-player game of Citadels (Ohne Furcht
und Adel.) We play to 7 buildings instead of 8, which shortens the
game, and we stick with the original roles (but we allow a player
who is assassinated to collect two gold in an attempt to reduce the
luck factor somewhat.)
Eric jumped out to an early lead with several middle-sized buildings,
and he survived an assassination attempt by someone who thought he
must be the priest (the real priest, Scott, died in the crossfire.)
The other players targeted him and Evan was soon in the lead. Rich
had taken a few random shots and was trailing badly. At this point
Rich spent two turns as King. Rich took a role, Evan took a role,
and Eric took Assassin and tried to guess which of the three
possible cards was Evan's. Both times Evan ducked and Eric hit
Rich instead, much to Rich's disgust. This activity allowed Walt
and Dan to make a comeback, and attention focused on them as the
game approached its end.
On the final round, Eric took the Architect, but lost his hand to
a Magician with no cards. He drew his two free cards and was able
to build both of them for 7 buildings and 5 colors. This gave him
a win in this seesaw game. Final scores: Eric 26, Dan 24, Walt 21,
Evan 17, Scott 17, Rich 14.
Eric's rating: 9. I enjoy the think/double-think that this game
requires. It plays very well for 3 to 7, and there's a good
variant for 2 as well. There's a lot of luck, but if you play to
only 7 buildings it is relatively quick.