Tibs Manor

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Game Night - Pirates and Doges

Played two games last night at CalTech, both of which followed a similar pattern. First up was Pirate's Cove. I jumped out to a big lead mainly by avoiding combat, which is my general strategy for this game. That's really my only beef with the game, it seems safest to stay away from fighting, which is contrary to a dicechucking pirating game. Anyway after awhile the other two guys playing had to gang up and sink me which slowed me down a lot. I ended up coming in second. The game was very fun as usual. There are very few highly random theme-over-mechanics games that I have learned in the past few years that I actually really enjoy, and this is near the top of my list.

Next up was San Marco. I led for almost the entire game but gradually saw my board position erode as the other 3 players went after me. I ended up managing a tie for second and that was by the skin of my teeth. I have a general problem in games where I sprint the first half of a marathon and then sputter over the finish line. A lot of these games encourage you to disguise your strength; if you come out scoring points, you'll get bashed again and again. Anyway I was still pleased on the whole, this is normally a game I am terrible at, it was nice to do well for awhile at least. This game has a great central mechanic that I haven't seen elsewhere, where one player is given a set of good cards and bad cards, and splits them into various piles, and the other players pick which pile they want. You know, like two kids deciding how to cut one piece of cake. It makes for very difficult decisions, and I often make bad ones in this game, but it is a really interesting problem that I enjoy no matter how it turns out.


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