Monday, 12 May 2014

in photos: with the children

This is a card from one of the Ascension promo expansions, and I think it is overpowered. So far it seems anyone who manages to buy it will win. When you play it, you claim all heroes in the centre row, and put them at the top of your draw deck. That is a very powerful move. The card is expensive, which means you probably will only be able to afford it in the late game, and you may not get to actually use it that many times. Still, I feel it is too powerful.

I bought Agricola when it went on sale on iPad/iPhone. Playdek did the development, so the interface is good. However Agricola is a game with many components and many cards, so overall I think playing the physical game is better. You can see the full picture in one glance, as opposed to having to scroll and switch views on the touchscreen. Playdek is good, but they are not god. Still, there are advantages in playing the software version. It saves a lot of work in game setup, managing components and scoring. The AI's seem to be quite good. I am a little rusty. When I played against the toughest AI, I lost by quite a wide margin.

1 May 2014. May Day holiday was game day with the children. Shee Yun (9) wanted to play FITS, a Tetris-like game. This really is multiplayer solitaire. It is playing different puzzles at the same time and then comparing results. But there is simple fun to be had.

I played Hanabi with Chen Rui (7).

We need to work on our collaboration skills - we only scored 10VP, a lousy score. Full marks is 25VP.

The children often suggest Barbarossa, a game where you make sculptures and then try to guess others' sculptures.

Shee Yun (red, left) made a badminton racket, a saxophone and a sandwich. Chen Rui (white, background) made water and two others I don't remember. I think the round one is an eye. I (white, foreground) made a brick, a biscuit and a lighthouse. I thought my lighthouse was made quite cleverly - not too easy and not too hard, but the children guessed it even before the game started. Is it that obvious?

4 May 2014. When playing Pickomino it is not good to roll lots of small numbers.

Shee Yun (in the background) has not finished practising piano, so no boardgames for her yet. I can be a tiger dad too sometimes.

It's not easy taking a photo while playing a game of Loopin' Louie. Chen Rui had "angin" that day (i.e. she was on a roll) and beat me in four straight games.

Love Letter. Chen Rui played the #1 card and wanted to guess the card in my hand. If she guessed right, I would be out of the game.

This was the first time we played Love Letter correctly, i.e. with the correct card distribution. Previously I mistook that there were two of every card type. The gameplay still felt similar, although more character guesses were attempted, because there were five #1 cards now.

Shee Yun wanted to play Zombies! Run for your Lives!. This is not a game I would want to play with gamers, and not a game that can be taken very seriously. It's a game where you can pick on someone and be nasty to him, so if not managed properly it can result in hard feelings. However if everyone plays in a hold-hands-sing-song way, the game can last forever. No one would allow anyone else to get killed by zombies, and yet when anyone threatens to win, it is easy for others to bring him down a notch. The game would get stuck in a neither here nor there situation. So the game is best played in a light-hearted way. Nasty plays are just friendly jabs. My children fed me to the zombies quite a few times, and of course I resurrected as a zombie myself to chase after them. Brainnnns!!

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