Friday, 29 December 2017

boardgaming in photos

22 Oct 2017. Tales of the Arabian Nights. It had been a while. I felt like playing something, and conscripted the kids to play with me. I had forgotten most of the rules, and explained it clunkily while reading the rulebook. Bad idea and rookie mistake. It made the kids impatient. I should have read it by myself first so that the teaching would go much smoother.

I picked this game because elder daughter Shee Yun is into writing these days. I thought a story-telling game would be up her alley.

This is one of the special locations. You can't simply decide to enter such locations. Only special incidents give you an opportunity to visit one of these locations. Sometimes you won't even get one chance for the whole game.

Two of my status cards got me stuck for quite a while. I was a Sultan, which meant I was very wealthy. However it also meant my travel speed on land was greatly reduced due to having a large retinue. At the same time, I was a cripple. This status also reduced my movement speed. I was some distance away from Baghdad. I had settled down in another city and made it my hometown. Each time I left home, I could only visit one other city before returning home, otherwise the wife would be mad at me. From where I was, I could not reach Baghdad without stopping at another city, which meant I could never get to Baghdad to claim victory. I had enough Destiny points and Story points to win, but no way to get to Baghdad. Eventually it was an incident which let me employ Shee Yun (who was a clever scholar) to cure me of my crippled status. Only then I managed to go to Baghdad to win. Actually I wasn't sure whether I played this right. The text said I could do this, but it did not say explicitly whether Shee Yun could refuse.

This time playing Tales of the Arabian Nights felt a little draggy. I guess it was partly because of how I got stuck for some time with no way to progress. The story being told in this game is not really a consistent narrative. It is a story assembled from random snippets. It is only partly affected by your character's statuses and your decisions. The results of some of the decisions are rather random too. Sometimes you do experience an interesting journey. Sometimes it can be a disjointed experience. Winning is more luck than skill, but that's okay, because this game is more about the experience than outdoing your friends.

27 Oct 2017. Cubist, a game where you build structures with dice. This time I played a 3-player game with Allen and Heng. It was Heng's first time.

The structure in the middle is the museum. Completion of the museum is one of the game-end conditions. The museum starts with one die - the red one. The blue and brown dice are player dice. So far Allen and Heng had contributed to museum construction. I had not yet contributed any dice. I was green.

I was only one #3 die away from completing this sculpture on the left. I needed one more #3 die to stack on top of the existing #3 die. I was building some kind of rampart. We were near game end. All three of us were close to completing one last sculpture, which would end the game. It came down to whoever was first to roll the right number. He would complete his sculpture, and the points from that sculpture would put him in the lead and give him the victory.

The green card is the blueprint for the museum. The Museum is only one #6 die away from being completed.

This was Heng's first time playing Machi Koro too. I love this game and was more than happy to teach. I directly taught the Harbour expansion.

17 Nov 2017. Both Allen and I like Innovation. It has classic status between us. We don't regularly play it, but still bring it out once in a while, unlike most hobby games which only get played once or twice, and then stay on the shelf. Our games were a little lopsided, but still fun. What's cool about Innovation is there can always be an unexpected twist around the corner.

15 Dec 2017. There was a team-building event at work, and one of the activities was boardgames. Naturally I was the supplier of boardgames. Among the games picked, Captain Sonar was the most complex. Most were very simple. In the game of Captain Sonar played that day, both radio operators were competent and did not make any mistake. Blue team (left) managed to determine the exact location of yellow team (right) earlier. I was confident they would win. Knowledge was power. In the early game, blue team mostly used detection tools, to help them find the location of their enemy. Yellow team mostly used weapons, but they seemed to be shooting blindly without knowing for sure where the enemy was. However at one of their attacks, they managed an indirect hit, which greatly reduced the possible positions of their enemy. Blue team wasn't ready to counterattack due to their weapons system being offline. They had to repair it first. They never did manage to recover. Before they could get themselves organised, yellow team kept up relentless attacks and eventually sank them.

Coconuts must be played in a meeting room and not in any open area because the coconuts would fly, bounce and roll everywhere.

There was bitter competition in Halli Galli. It was a four-player game, and they had to play till two players remained. When they were down to three, play was intense and everyone managed to hold on for a long time. There were a few times Zharif ran out of cards, but the next time exactly 5 fruits of the same kind came up, he managed to ring the bell first. So he claimed a stack of cards and was back in action. It was exciting to see him back from the brink many times.

I had used Loopin Louie for a previous company event, so some of my colleagues already knew how to play.

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