Thursday, April 19, 2007


Watched Happy Feet and then played Hey! That's My Fish! Cute kid's flick. Cute kid's game. Z liked both. She's 8. Right now she is making designs with the hexes and making the little penguins dance on them.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007


Played Caylus for the first time. It made Al grumpy. Afterwards we played Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots and felt better.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Suburban Sprawl

I played a new game tonight. The object is to drive from one brother's house to another's and then back again, without trying to get into the wrong house or have someone set their little dog after you. Damn hard game. I drove the wrong way down a one way street, ended up in three different cul de sacs, and I think I ran over someone's garden gnome. The old lady with the dog was pretty pissed too.

Cosmic Encounter

My brother's great, he gives me chocolate cake.

Actually, he didn't give me cake. He gave me Cosmic Encounter - AH, new in shrink. He said his friend was glad to get rid of it, and that if he remembered correctly, it sucked.

I said, "Yeah, well, AH Cosmic Encounter is better than no Cosmic Encounter at all."

He said, "The old versions sucked too."

So I called him "Caylus boy," and gave him a big hug.

Winner's Circle

Played Winner's Circle after dinner with Al, Peter and Brenda. Yelled a lot. Spent most of the game trying to convince Brenda to screw Peter and Al, who spent most of the game trying to convince Brenda to screw me. I think Al won, but don't remember. It was just fun yelling at the die, and accusing each other of moving the wrong horse. The horse colors SUCK. We are all the time mixing up the monkey shit green horse with the baby shit green horse.

Strider showed up just as we were finishing the second race, so we packed it in and did some Wii bowling. Then everyone but me played Wii golf. Strider had to leave early because he has a paper due tomorrow and an exam on Tuesday.

Sunday, April 15, 2007


Peter and I finally got our shit together and finalized our plans for WBC. We got our hotel reservations at the Continental, which is directly across the street from the Host. Al and I stayed there last year, and it was great - dark quiet room with a king size bed and a refridgerator, and free breakfast. Peter stayed at the Host last year and was pretty miserable with the noise from the convention, plus no free breakfast. So we get Continental reservations on the phone, and both of us make our reservations. The lady was amazing. Despite our total spaziness, and our needing to reserve two different rooms, with different bed configurations, on two different credit cards, and our passing the phone back and forth, she was able to keep it all straight.

Our final plan is that we will all meet up at Peter's house on Wed. night for a game of Fury of Dracula. If Strider isn't in town, Peter is going to ask a friend to join us so we will have a fifth player. We'll spend the night at Peter's and head to Lancaster on Thursday, which is only about an hour away. Brenda will join us on Friday or Saturday. We will all drive up to CT on Sunday.


Visiting brother P. Played Tempus. Meh. As Peter said, it just isn't exciting. Peter and Al are playing Wii now. Meh. The people are cute, but it just isn't exciting.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Packing for Vacation

Mission : Red Planet : A new game for Peter to try. I think he will like it.

Funny Friends : A party game that Strider and Brenda will like.

Winner's Circle : A family game that Peter hasn't played yet. I think the girls will like it.

Grave Robbers From Outer Space : A stupid game that we had fun playing with Peter last summer. Strider might like this one too.

Modern Art : A little gift for Peter and family.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Games that give me a headache

Carcassonne - Hunters and Gatherers
Through the Desert

I'm really good at these, and usually win whenever someone *cough*Francie*cough* twists my arm into playing , but they make my head hurt and my left eye twitch.

Here is how you win at Torres.

  1. Play with people who are really into the building aspect of the game. Let them use up their action points to build stuff.
  2. Use your action points to get out all your Vienna Sausages and have them run around and jump onto the castles that everyone else has built.
  3. Make sure you always call your guys Vienna Sausages, because it really bothers people, and makes them think about penises, which distracts them and makes them screw up.
  4. Get lots of Spell Cards and cast them on your Sausages so that they can make Heroic Leaps or Teleport.
  5. Make sure you call the cards "Spell Cards", and say things like, "I am casting Heroic Leap on my Vienna Sausage," because that annoys people too.
  6. After you cast a spell on one of your Sausages, call it a Magical Sausage. Then everyone will start yelling at you to shut up and forget what their great plan was.
  7. Make someone else score your points for you. It makes them feel all clever that they can do addition and multiplication in their head, and tricks them into thinking that you are stupid, especially since you keep saying things like "Magic Sausages." During the game they will focus on trying to out calculate the other clever players who can also do addition and multiplication in their heads, and ignore what you are doing. Plus, you don't get a headache from counting all those beige blocks.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

Marvel Heroes

Today was Al's birthday. When he opened Marvel Heroes his first words were "Wow . . . WOW!" Z was literally jumping with excitement as I popped out the figs (a huge pain).

It took quite a while for us to work through the rules, which we found a bit jumbled, requiring three trips to BGG for clarifications.

Al and I struggled through a learning game, with Z stopping by to help roll the dice and add color commentary. We caught on to the basic mechanics quickly, but there is a lot to remember. Reviewing the rules afterwards, I see that we forgot a lot and played a few things wrong.

I had read many comments that the game was too dry and abstract. We didn't find this to be true at all. Both Z and Al are comic super hero fans, and brought the richness of the knowledge of that fandom to the table. They narrated each headline and provided a play by play for each combat.

"Toxic gas cloud released over the city! It's Storm to the rescue. Using her wind control, she blows the gas into the upper atmosphere, where it becomes harmless. But what's this? It's the Green Goblin trying to make an escape. Storm hits him with a lightning bolt. He retaliates with explosive pumpkin bombs, releasing more toxic gas. . .etc."

I do see, however, how ignoring the flavor text and focusing on the numbers could turn this into a mathematical exercise of "I'm going to the 6 headline. I'm using my red power to roll 5 dice. You use your yellow power to roll 4 defense dice. . ."

I agree that the story track was gamey and disappointing. I also agree that Marvel Heroes feels unnecessarily complex. I think we may play without the story track, the mastermind mind rules, or the power-ups for awhile. We are going to consider those elements as the expansion. I think this will allow us to more quickly master the mechanics and strategy of the base game and make it easy enough for our daughter to play.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Arkham Horror - Chaosium version

Al asked me to pick out a game and set it up while he finished down loading some Brian Jonestown Massacre. I picked Arkham Horror. I unpacked the pieces, but didn't set it up because I was sure Al wouldn't want to play. Surprise, he agreed to play. This is such a great game. It really isn't that complicated. It just looks complicated because of all the monster chits. Also the rules SUCK. We couldn't remember which monsters were immune to a spell (like it would have been so hard to just print the exceptions on the spell card itself), and it took forever to find the info in the rules, which, did I mention, SUCK. I need to make up a quick reference sheet for the rules.

Friday, April 6, 2007


Z changed her mind about playing Mutant Chronicles: Siege of the Citadel and decided that she wanted to play HeroQuest today. She plays the dwarf, but pretends she's a hobbit. I play the elf. We used the female figures that I painted back in my youth, and still keep in their special box. Al was the DM. We played the second mission. Since we were playing only two characters, Al declared a special sale at the equipment shop - 2 shields and 2 helmets for exactly the amount of gold that we had earned from the first mission. Z gets a little flipped out about losing hit points, so the extra defense is a good thing. Al always adjusts the game to keep Z's character alive during the game so that she doesn't freak out, however she doesn't realize this, so the game is always tense for her. It was a lot of fun. Z found a broadsword early on, and happily slashed her way through the monsters. At one point, I used the walk through rock spell to move into an adjacent room while Z kept the monsters busy up front. I kicked in the back door and dealt two swift blows to the chaos warrior on the other side. Z thought that was so cool that she had to act that bit out a couple of times using the living room door before we could continue. We completed the mission and returned with a pile of treasure.

Logging Plays

The BGG widget that shows your recently played games has been an incentive to actually log the games that I play. It is pretty cool to come here and see all the pretty pictures of the games I have played.

Mutant Chronicles: Siege of the Citadel

We had a couple of warm days and my daughter needed a T-shirt. I pulled a couple out of the trunk where I store out of season clothes. As I was doing this, Z spotted Mutant Chronicles: Siege of the Citadel amongst the shorts and bathing suits. She asked to take it out. I think the woman on the box cover is what caught her attention.

Tonight I set the game up so Z could see it. This game certainly has a WOW factor. Al and I did a little training mission and taught Z how to kill the bad guys. She wants to to play for real tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Cleopatra and the Society of Accountants

F got this game for her birthday. She loves it. She wants to marry it. Well, maybe not marry it. Maybe just lick it's obelisks. I don't understand this, because whenever I introduce her to a nice man, she's all like "Meh. What a nebbish. He looks like an accountant." Considering that she finds accountants unattractive, you would think that a game where you play an accountant would totally turn her off. But she's totally into it. Go figure.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

The cupboard is full, but there's nothing to play.

Al asked me to pick out a game to play tonight, but nothing suits my fancy.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Giant Silly Mutant Monster Weekend

Today we played Gammarauders.

We set up and picked bioborgs. Al choose Roddis the Octopod. I choose Dweemish the Hamsterian.

Turn 1: Al plays two "ANY" recruitment cards, gets 5 hovertanks and moves them out towards my fortress.

Turn 2: Al plays two gammajet recruitment cards and gets 5 gamma jets. Al plops 9 hovertanks, 9 gammajets and Roddis on my fortress, and then slaps down the "Super Hovertank" card - his hovertanks are now worth 2 each. We roll. I lose. Roddis trashes my fortress. Al wins. Game over.

Al says, "This game is stupid. Let's play
Monsters Menace America again."

Total playing time, including set up, about 15 minutes.