Games Night 14th June 2021

Colt Express (Ludonaute) was the first game of choice this virtual evening (via Board Games Arena).

The Cast:
Emily as Cheyenne
Malcolm as Tuco
Matt as Belle
Paul as Ghost
Phil as Django

Five villainous bandits made it onto the moving train. It’s not made clear how they managed this feat of insanity, but there you go. Ghost, Django and Belle were sitting pretty at the bar in the caboose whilst Cheyenne and Tuco, in their enthusiasm, had already made into the fourth car.
Not happy with the company he was keeping Ghost promptly scrambled onto the roof of the caboose. Cheyenne also abandoned her companion and made her way into the third car, the diners surprisingly unperturbed by the sudden appearance of a gun toting native American. Not wanting to miss out on the acrobatics, Belle also moved roof-side. With amazing reflexes, Tuco took a swing at the already absent Cheyenne and felt mighty silly about that. Remembering his mission, Django pilfered a jewel. Well done Django!
Like a mildly frantic gazelle, Ghost skipped ahead on the fast-moving train all the way to the second car when the stupidity of what he was doing caught up with him. Realising that sitting in the locomotive is only interesting for so long, the Marshal decided to actually do his job and started patrolling the train and made it as far as the first car when he got distracted by a pretty passenger.
Belle chased after Ghost but found her skirts were not the most sensible choice of attire for leaping from car to car and stopped at the third car to rearrange restrictive garments.
Despite being surrounded by wealthy passengers, Tuco instead shot Cheyenne in the adjoining car.
Django decided a single money bag was not worth his time and joined Tuco in the fourth car where there was far more loot to be had.
Feeling exposed, Ghost somehow managed to dive back down through an open window into the car below. Unfortunately, he found himself in the luggage car and there was pretty slim pickings. Despite being shot, Cheyenne successfully helped herself to a jewel. Alone on the roof, Belle looked down the sights of her weapon, but with nobody else travelling so precariously, she put the gun down again. Tuco ran into the 3rd car away from Django, who promptly shot him in the back and propelled him past all the lovely jewels just lying about there and into the next car which contained Ghost and not a lot else. Ghost opened fire at the rapidly moving Tuco and instead hit Cheyenne who was also shot by the gun-slinging Django, the impact of which also flung her into the second car with Ghost and Tuco. It had got a bit crowded in there.
Finally, Tuco got his act together and robbed a purse off a passenger passed out in a drunken stupor amongst the luggage. He’s a nice guy if you get to know him. Belle doubled back to the second car rooftop. She was planning something.
With nothing left to take in the car, Cheyenne just glared at Tuco.
The passengers, having had enough of this shoddy treatment, suddenly draw their substantial armament and opened fire on the hapless thieves. Cheyenne (who was taking bullets like a boss), Django, Ghost and Tuco all get wounded, but are made of too stern a stuff to just do something, like die.

Chapter Two
Hearing the commotion in the next car, the Marshal stopped chatting up the pretty passenger and stormed into the second car like some lawman with a big gun. Despite it being stuffed to the windows with the poor luggage, the Marshal took his upholding the law job seriously and fired at anything that moved, might have moved, or could possibly move at some point in the future. The increasingly bullet-ridden Cheyenne, Ghost and Tuco somehow managed to escape from there on to the roof. While they were ineffectually avoiding getting shot full of lead, Belle clambered down into the fourth car and joined Django and some wealthy passengers who, having seen the futility of shooting the bandits, have returned to their seats and discussions.
As if having five bullet holes in her wasn’t enough, Tuco landed a perfect punch on Cheyenne that sent her flying to the roof of the third car. A dropped jewel glinted in the sun where Cheyenne dropped it. Miraculously, it didn’t fall of the roof of rumbling train.
Not wanting to share the loot with Belle, Django punched her into next week – or rather the third car, which had much nicer loot. A passenger sneakily snatched up the purse she dropped when she got punched.
Ghost decided to go for the strongbox and made his way to the first car. He got shot in the back by Cheyenne who had re-joined Tuco on the roof of the second car. Shaking off the punch, Belle sent Django a kiss, closely followed by a bullet and demurely helped herself to a jewel.
Back on the roof, Tuco ignored the jewel completely and satisfied himself by shooting Ghost twice.
In the train Django smacked a passenger about until the uncooperative oik gave up his bag of money and then shot Belle sending her skidding into the second car with the Marshal, who was still very much into shooty mode and scored a hit before she made it out the window and onto the crowded roof.
In his eagerness, Ghost forgot about the bit about actually getting to the place where the loot was and tried snatching it up. Unsurprisingly, while sitting atop and moving train, he was unsuccessful.
With nothing left to shoot, the Marshal continued on the the third car.
In a show of remarkable endurance, Cheyenne found the strength to punch Tuco back to the third car, and pinched his purse at the same time. Ghost continued to scrabble ineffectually at the roof of the car acquiring precisely no loot. Django, wanting to see what the big deal was, climbed onto the roof of the car. Tuco tried picking up the dropped jewel but was too stunned from the punch to notice he was on the wrong roof.
The Marshal moved to the fourth car and was disappointed to find nothing amiss. Even the wealthy passengers still had their money. For no apparent reason, the Marshal decided it was a good idea to leave a second strongbox in that car.

Chapter Three
While Belle helped herself to Cheyenne’s dropped jewel, Tuco rushed past her and onto the roof of the locomotive and got shot by Ghost for his effort. Now that she was safely past the Marshall, Cheyenne clamoured back into the train. Belle shot Django. Tuco took a swing at an anticipated rival for the strongbox, but with a no-show, just battered at the air for a bit. Django shot Belle, sending her to the first car – those two have a lot of making up to do after this is over. The Marshall made his way to the caboose and away from the sound of gunfire and screams and got a drink at the bar. Having discovered that she’d taken a liking to shooting people, Belle shot Tuco. He had done nothing to her during this entire escapade and looked hurt in more ways than one. Cheyenne moved into the first car and started to check out the passengers. Above her, Belle gets punched in the face by Ghost and dropped a jewel on her way back to the roof of the second car. Warily, Django moved one car closer to the action. Tuco shot back at Belle, but hit Ghost. This surprised the now inebriated Marshal who shot through the roof, doing nothing much except putting a hole in it and scaring the barman.

Chapter Four
Tuco shot Ghost for no other reason than he just could,
Django climbed to the interior of the Car while Ghost helped himself to Belle’s dropped jewel. Meanwhile, Cheyenne found a jewel and swiped it. Poor Ghost started to feel he was living up to his name when Belle shot him for the sixth time. The Marshal staggered into the fourth car and Django helped himself to a jewel that was just innocuously just sitting there minding its own business. Having had enough, Ghost slid down into the car to join Cheyenne, but she promptly scarpered forwards into the locomotive. Belled then climbed back into the train, leaving Tuco alone on the roof, punching away at the air like he just don’t care. The Marshal surprised Django when he shot him, Django made it onto the roof. His job done, the Marshal moved back to the fourth car. Have had enough of making a fool of himself, Tuco made his way into the locomotive to find Cheyenne had beaten him to it and leaving Django alone on the roof with no one to shoot at. Deciding to double back to the second strongbox, Ghost joined Belle in the second car and moved out of range of Cheyenne who was all ready to shoot someone. Belle tried the robbing thing, but there was nothing of value in that car. Suddenly, the train slammed on the breaks propelling Django onto the roof of the second car.

Chapter Five
The roof was finally vacated when Django climbed inside to join Belle. Ghost moved to the first car while Cheyenne claimed the strongbox in the locomotive and made a rude gesture to Tuco. Belle ran from Django to Ghost and Django failed completely to hit her in the back. Ignoring Belle, Ghost purloined a bag of money. Clutching the strongbox, Cheyenne found Belle and Ghost in the first car just as Belle also became richer by exactly one bag of money. Late once again, Tuco joins the party in the first car and is deafened by the sound of Ghost shooting Django in the next car. Getting out of a likely fracas, the two ladies made their way to the roof. In a most ungentlemanly way, Tuco shot Cheyenne through the roof. It is never mentioned where she was hit from that unfortunate direction. Django returned Ghost’s shot but hit Tuco, knocking him back into the empty locomotive. Alone again, Ghost acquired the final purse in the car and Belle skipped one car back to the caboose. Poor Tuco found nothing to steal in his unexpected location. The marshal tried having his revenge, but with no one on the roof above him, nobody noticed.

Tuco was the rootinest-shootinest so was awarded the $1000 Gunslinger title.
Ghost got shot the most (6x).

Final scores:
Emily: 2150
Malcolm: 1250
Matt: 750
Paul: 1350
Phil: 1500

Well done Cheyenne a.k.a. Emily!

We played it again.
This time:
Emily was Doc
Malcolm was Cheyenne
Matt was Ghost
Paul was Belle
Phil was Django

Various tomfoolery happened.
Cheyenne was the gunslinger
The end score:
Emily: 1500
Malcolm: 2000
Matt: 1600
Paul: 2450
Phil: 600
Well done Belle a.k.a. Paul!

Next up we played Happy City (Cocktail Games)

A new game to some of us.

Final scores:
Emily: 36
Malcolm: 54
Matt: 36
Paul: 48
Phil: 48

I won something!

We played it again.

Final scores:
Emily: 48
Malcolm: 48
Matt: 42
Paul: 36
Phil: 35
A joint win for Emily and Myself

And again, on the more experienced setting…

Final scores:
Emily: 36
Malcolm: 20
Matt: 5
Paul: 35
Phil: 42
I could say I gave up my winning streak to let someone else have some of the glory… Phil got there all by himself!

A great evening of games. Thanks guys.

Games Night 7th June 2021

Just the three of this virtual (via Board Game Arena) week.

Lots of smaller games today.
We kicked off with Splendor (Space Cowboys)

All went swimmingly for most.
In the end the scores were:

Malcolm Paul Phil
White 4 3 1
Blue 5 3 1
Green 2 3 3
Red 4 2 5
Black 4 3 4
Nobles 0 1 2
Score 9 17 13

Nicely done there, Paul!

Next up, Phil introduced us to Railroad ink (Horrible Guild)

After Phil explained some of the rules we embarked on the playing of the game.
The first game was played without us realising we could filp the images.

A victory for Malcolm
We tried it again:

We all improved somewhat, particularly when it was discovered that the shapes could be flipped. Malcolm won again.
We tried it a third time:

Same result.
I really liked this game, not just because I kept winning (which does help, of course) but it’s how my brain works. I also thing this one benefits by being digital. I’m not normally a fan of roll and write games because my penmanship is atrocious.

Moving on, we then played a couple of games of Kingdomino (Blue Orange Games)

Round one saw Malcolm get stymied regarding tile placement:

A big win for Phil there.
Round two:

Better scores all round, but Phil smashed it.

All in all, a great evening of games. Sometimes it’s quite nice to play lots of shorter games rather than spending the whole evening on one game.
Plus, everybody won something.

Games Night 10th May 2021

Four of us on this virtual gaming week, again via Board Game Arena.

We picked Kingdom Builder (Queen Games).

Malcolm did his best to appraise everyone of the rules and then lots of little virtual wooden houses were virtually placed on a virtual board to score actual points.

Final scores:

Malcolm Matt Paul Phil
Fishermen 9 10 20 8
Merchents 20 0 16 8
Knights 24 14 26 10
Castle 6 3 3 12
Total 59 27 65 38

Well done Paul, what a decent score there, less so Matt…

Confident we knew what we were doing we played another round.

The end result:

Malcolm Matt Paul Phil
Miners 23 14 10 4
Knights 28 12 24 22
Lords 24 18 18 12
Castle 9 9 9 9
Total 84 53 61 47

Crused it with a proper score!
This is a game that can benefit from being virtual in that it shows all the legal placements and helps with the end game scoreing.

7 Wonders (Repos Production) next

The card drafting thing happened until it stopped at the end of the game.

Final scores:

Malcolm Matt Paul Phil
Conflict -5 7 15 5
Money/3 8 3 5 0
Wonder 10 10 10 10
Civilian 18 15 5 3
Science 0 0 0 38
Commerce 7 0 4 0
Guild 8 16 0 0
Total 46 51 39 56

A strong win by Phil.

Another great evening of games, thanks guys!

Games Night 26th April 2021

Four of us for this virtual week!

This time we kicked off with Puerto Rico ((Rio Grande)).

I game I quite enjoy, though never do very well at.
Lots of things happened, and our boards ended up looking like this:

Yes, we all thought the boards were really tiny on the screen as well.
Final scores:
Malcolm: 37
Matt: 49
Paul: 53
Phil: 39

A win for Paul. I felt somewhat vindicated, although I predictably lost, I wasn’t that far behind Phil.
Matt called it a night, leaving the three of us on our lonesome.

Next up we Phil introduced us to CuBirds (Catch-Up Games)

I got really good and getting a good hand and then losing everything to a reshuffle.
The final collections looked like this:

With my final hand being:

Phil was the winner.
I quite enjoyed this one, though it did get a bit annoying having my hand taken off of me every time I had something workable.
Another great evening!

Games Night 29th March 2021

Six of us for this virtual week!

We thought we’d try our hand at Al Hambra (Queen Games)

We got our money cards and play commenced.
We all built something.
And scored something:

Emily Malcolm Matt Paul Phil Ruthie
86 56 58 62 75 56

A decent win for Emily there.

Next up we played Seven Wonders (Repos Production)

Cards were played, money changed hands and armies did their thing.

Final scores:

Emily Malcolm Matt Paul Phil Ruthie
CONFLICT 2 -3 6 16 1 6
COINS 2 3 1 8 10 6
WONDER 0 10 7 10 10 10
CIVILIAN 13 6 19 6 22 23
SCIENCE 13 5 0 4 4 0
COMMERCE 5 3 3 3 4 0
GUILD 14 8 22 0 0 6
Total 51 32 58 47 51 51

Matt’s civilisation for the win!

Finally we played Downforce (Restoration Games)

After the bidding, we owned some cars:

Emily (Determined): Blue
Malcolm (Aggressive): Orange
Matt (Tricky): Green
Paul (Cunning): Red
Phil (Strategic): Yellow
Ruthie (Unpredictable): Black

The end of the race looked a bit like this:

A solid win for Phil!!!

Games Night 22nd March 2021

Five of us this week.
We kicked off with Hanabi (Cocktail Games)

After being given the run-down on how to play this cooperative card game where each player is not allowed to see their own cards, we gave it our best shot.
This was the result.

I’m to understand this was a pretty good go at it.
Next up we played Stone Age (Z-Man Games).

And so our little meeples went of ahunting, agathering, abuilding, afarming and erm amakingmoremeepling.
In the end, the game ended.

Final scores:
Emily: 157
Malcolm: 76
Matt: 83
Paul: 124
Phil: 150
Well done Emily, what a win there!
A great evening of game-playing and the last time I win something for ages.

Games Night 15th March 2021

5 of us this week where our names all begin with either M or P. A warm welcome to Mark.
Lots of games played this evening all played virtually via Board Game Arena
We started off with Downforce (Restoration Games)

Malcolm bought the Orange car
Mark bought the Blue car
Matt bough the Red and Yellow cars
Paul bought the Black car
Phil bought the Green car
The yellow car dominated the race and crossed all the checkpoints first.
2nd: Blue
3rd: Red
4th: Green
5th: Black
6th: Orange

Final scores:

Well done Matt!
I’m still not a fan of this one. I don’t know if it’s because I’m not into the theme (which is a thin veneer at best) or it’s a roll and move game but with cards.

Next we played 7 Wonders Repos Production

We chose for a random board which also was randomly determined which side we got. The game got underway nicely.

In the end, the end happened.
Here’s the scores:

Malcolm Mark Matt Paul Phil
Conflict 4 -2 16 0 6
Coin/3 5 7 5 6 1
Wonder 10 20 10 3 10
Civilian 0 5 16 20 25
Science 18 10 0 0 1
Commerce 2 4 0 10 0
Guild 8 0 16 0 8
Total 47 44 63 39 51

Well done Matt… again!

With this being a quick game, we gave it another go:

Final scores:

Malcolm Mark Matt Paul Phil
Conflict 18 -4 -6 18 2
Coin/3 1 4 5 11 2
Wonder 20 3 10 10 0
Civilian 3 4 33 5 17
Science 1 28 0 0 34
Commerce 0 0 3 13 0
Guild 12 13 10 0 0
Total 55 48 55 57 55

A nice recovery from last game by Paul, and a 3-way tie for second place. Matt broke the tie by having the most coins, followed by Phil pushing me into 4th place!
I do like this one, it’s got next to no down time and it provides many avenues to success – or failure.

Next up we played Draftosaurus

It’s a game we played and enjoyed last week, so why not give it another shot with more players?

Final scores:
Malcolm: 38
Mark: 27
Matt: 34
Paul: 42
Phil: 37
Another win for Paul!
We played another game and were surprised when Phil selected the alternate boards!

Final scores:
Malcolm: 35
Mark: 41
Matt: 35
Paul: 33
Phil: 41
Ties for the top two scores were settled by who had the most T-Rexs. So Phil took the lead from Mark and I achieved 3rd place over Matt.
Still a fun little game I’m going to have to pick up IRL once I get a job and have some of that money stuff to spare.

At this point Mark bowed out, so the 4 of us moved on to No Thanks! (Amigo)

Phil explained the rules to us and we gave it our best shot.

The scores:
Malcolm: -73
Matt: -24
Paul: -56
Phil: -26
Another win for Matt!

We tried again.

The scores:
Malcolm: -44
Matt: -38
Paul: -49
Phil: -13
Phil finally wins a game he’s introduced!
I’m usually a bit wary of basic number card games, but this one did feel different enough to be worth it.

All in all a great evening. Not often we have the lofty number of 5 players, so that was nice as well.

Games Night 8th March 2021

3 of us for this week’s virtual meet up via Board Game Arena.
The players:

I wanted to play Race for the Galaxy (Rio Grande Games)

so we did.
I explained the rules as I remembered them (it being over 1,400 days since I last played it) and we gave it two goes.

The first game ended when Paul played his 12th card.
The scores:
Malcolm: 23
Paul: 34
Phil: 32
So Paul ‘I don’t know what I’m doing’ won that one.

The second game ended when the VP tokens ran out, something none of us were ready for.

The scores:
Malcolm: 36
Paul: 38
Phil: 37
A much closer game where Paul ‘I still don’t know what I’m doing’ won. At least I was in the top three both times and Phil was a consistent close second.

I really enjoyed playing this one again and am beginning to feel I’m getting the hang of the symbology. I do find this a very satisfying game to play. Hoping to play it again soon.

With a little time left over we tried Draftosaurus (Ankama)

A new game to everyone which we picked up pretty quickly.
2 games again.
The end of Game 1 looked like this:

Malcolm: 34
Paul: 31
Phil: 30
Victory at least!

The end of Game 2 looked like this:

Malcolm: 26
Paul: 40
Phil: 31
Another win by Paul!

I think we all enjoyed this one even though the random die rolls can be a bit annoying at times. Looking forward to playing a IRL version of this game as I’m always a sucker for dinomeeples and this looks to be a very tactile game.

Player of the evening goes to Phil who managed to get second place in everything.

Games Nights 15th & 22nd February 2021

I was a bit lax writing up last week’s event, so I thought I’d might as well do both weeks in one go.

15th February 2021

Three of us again this week for another virtual games night via Board Games Arcade.
We decided on Res Arcana (Sandcastle Games).

As I was the only one familiar with the game, I quickly instructed the others how to play it.
The game was quite a long one with much deliberating.
Eventually we did get to the end.

Final scores:
Malcolm: 5
Paul: 13
Phil: 10
Either I’m not nearly as good at this game as I thought, or I’m one hell of a teacher…
Well done Paul.

22nd February 2021
And three of us meeting up virtually again this week. The game of choice: Terra Mystica (Capstone Games

With Phil being the only one familiar with this one (sort of) he gave us a quick run down of this one and off we go. I have to confess, I didn’t have the first idea what I was doing in this game at all. It didn’t matter what I did, but I apparently didn’t have enough coins, priests or workers to do anything much. So I did lots of terraforming and placing settlements. I did score some points, but I have no idea how.

Final scores:
Malcolm (Swarmlings): 63
Paul (Auren): 77
Phil (Giants): 98
Well done Phil.
Definitely one I’d like to give another go at once I’ve taken the time to read through the rule book and watched a video on how to play. I’d like to like this one but I need to get to know it better first.

Cards Against Humanity: Family Edition – Board Game Review

For #Blogmas 2020 day 30.

Cards Against Humanity is a card-driven party game that is very adult in content which can cause just about anyone to blush at some point. The Family Edition is designed to be played with children.

The game comes with a bunch of cards, most are white ‘answer’ cards with the rest being black ‘question’ cards. The question cards are either a literal question or a sentence with a missing word. Each player (as many as you can fit in a room) gets 10 white cards each and the starting player gets a black card. This is read aloud and all the other players choose one of their 10 cards to either answer the question or fill in the missing word. These offerings are then read out by the starting player prefixing each with the original question and the player who submitted the funniest response wins the black question card. Everyone who submitted a white card gets a new one and the next player gets the next black card. Play continues until it is decided to stop. The player with the most won black cards is the winner.

The overwhelming subject matter of the Family Edition is undeniably fecal in content. So many words for poo. There are other topics as well, but mostly poo, vomit or farting. However, having played this with an 11 and 12 year old, I can safely say they have levelled their subject matter appropriately. Both boys found this game absolutely hilarious and the adults were not all that far behind, to be honest. This isn’t a game about winning, it very much is the taking part that this is all about. With a hand of ten cards there are almost always good responses at hand for any black card. My main issue is the American content. The adult version of the game proudly boasts on the box cover that it is tailored for a British audience, it’s a shame they didn’t do the same for the family edition. There are some terms that we just don’t use here and some celebrity names we had to look up – a basketball player, some rapper and a dancer. Granted, had these been changed for a British football player, rapper and dancer I would probably still not know who they were, but at least I might have heard of them. There are also references to the Republicans and Democrats. It wouldn’t have been had to have either switched these our for British alternatives or provided some blank cards to make our own corrections.

I think I prefer this to the adult version, for one, I can play it with my children and also I can play it with just about anybody else without fear of offence being caused (the adult one goes to every ‘there’ there is).

Final score: Buy it!