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Gathering of Engineers

Ludographic considerations from the Silicon Forest

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Gamestorm Day 1

So I arrived at the Vancouver hotel around 3 pm, found the gaming easily , although sadly the board gamers are in a whole separate outbuilding from the rest of the Gamestorm convention folks.

I met a lot of old friends, and was quickly ushered into a Caylus game, picking up a game after a couple turns played by my friend Scott who had to take off. The game was fun although I had to re-learn as we went. My first three-player game, and overall still high marks.

Game 2 was Diamant with my draft expansions. Overall it was received well, just four of us playing, and the Cursed Temple expansion is still trailing the Three Artifacts expansion in popularity.

Then time for a quick check of the hospitality room before we set up for the Two Player Games Tournament. We did much more setup this year in terms of choosing and borrowing games, designing certificates, finding prizes (like Carcassonne Castle, San Juan, etc all sealed and new.) But we did less advertising - in previous years we haven't had to ... Well it finally bit us back, and only four people were there on time to play in the tourney. Maybe three other folks drifted in later and said they had signed up or wanted to play.

Our primary four played four games in all (all played the same games). First Drive by Simply Fun, one that Chris taught me tonight as the group learned it. Cute, I'd need to play a few more hands to see if I like it really. Then Versailles, a backgammon-style game of mine that seemed to go fairly well. Some players didn't care for (to wacky was the term I think!), and others (thanks Ken and Brandon!) really liked it.

Sidenote - while our main four were playing, at least three other games among people who shoed up late or just wanted in late were going on, including Battle Lines, Ingenious and Versialles. Now back to our regularly scheduled show ...

Third up was Battle Lines, played with the tactics cards. We had thought perhaps one round without the special cards (Schotten Totten) and one with, but it was pointed out that the two games would run to quite a length. And after that, Round Four was seeded based on winning scores and the championshpip game was... Ingenious!

dave beat Phoenix and claimed the first place prize. In the consolation round, Chris's son Jacob won his match and claimed a nice prize from our Prize Table. Thans to everyone who played, and sad we didn't have more. Live action Roborally, run by Richard Garfield the author (and of course founder of the Magic the Gathering phenomenon) might have pulled a lot of people, but who knows?

Then we were off to a quick dinner at Denny's, a fast game of Can't Stop with a pen-and-paper game board and the famous Chris Vest Dice that he now always carries. Back to the Hotel, and Dave and I got roped into OD, literally a game of trading and taking drugs first printed by the National Lampoon in the Sixties (our host Andrew Nesbet said). Cute game, but a bit slow. And the subject matter a little hard to swallow.

Finally we were rescued from planned overdoses and got to play three hands of King of the Elves with four players. Fun game, and fairly close going into the third round. Then Chris travelled around the world, collecting two gold cities (doubling those points) and collecting over 50 points in one round. dave and I threw in our hands, knowing we were nowhere close to that.

But still a fun ride and challenge, and the people, as ever, make the game. More games tomorrow, and I'll report on them and the panel talks next time.


  • At 11:08 AM, Blogger Wes M said…

    While Dave is planning on holding folk accountable for their new year’s resolutions, I thought I’d use Gamestorm as my Quarter point (a week early,) and see how I am doing.

    1) Play at least four games with my brother. I bought him Rommel in the Desert for Christmas with this in mind. Between RitD, Civ/AdCiv, and the two other block games I bought (in December, my birthday month,) Crusader Rex and Hammer of the Scots, I might have a decent shot at this.

    UPDATE: We played a Rommel scenario in January. ¼ of the year, ¼ of the way. I’m shooting for a Civ./AdCiv (8 hour limit) session in April.

    2) Add four new games to my collection. As a small business owner, money is tight, (thus the Columbia Games package deal with multiple discounts as alluded to in#1.) Four games would keep pace with 2005.

    UPDATE: I picked up TtR:Europe and Caylus at Gamestorm. Ahead of schedule here.

    3) Get in one megagame. I’m thinking along the lines of die Macher or Twilight Imperium 3ed.. Though if I have enough players in a Civilization / Advanced Civilization, game (see #1) that might have to count.

    UPDATE: Nada. Though AdCiv in April might count.

    4) Get Monica (my wife,) to play a game of Crusader Rex. This may be the hardest resolution to achieve – she hated Awful Green Things from Outer Space and I’m not sure if it was the games silliness, or the fact that it was wargame-esque. I fear the latter.

    UPDATE: Nada. Though *I* got to play CRex at Gamestorm with Dave. (Luckily I was more familiar with the ruleset, as with my conservative play he would have wiped the floor with me instead of the very close match we had.)

    5) Get to Gamestorm for at least one day of play. Sophia will be 9 months old (exactly on Friday,) and getting my mother to sit both days is unlikely. Logistically, Friday night might be my only option. Boo hiss.

    UPDATE: We decided to get a room at the hotel, and we switched Sophia back and forth. (We even brought her down to the floor so we could both be gaming, and she behaved VERY well.)

    6) Play an 18xx game. I think ultimately I will end up a Railroad Tycoon player, but I’d like to try an 18xx. This would probably happen at Gamestorm (check off #5 while I’m at it.) And perhaps satisfy the megagame (#3) as well. (Especially if I end up playing 1830 or 1856.)

    UPDATE: Nada. But if Chris B. ever gets a session to knock an 18xx off of his burndown, I’d really like to be invited. (Grovel grovel, beg beg.)

  • At 7:31 PM, Blogger Chris Brooks said…

    Wes, Sophia was a DOLL. She was so well behaved and a pleasure to behold. She's welcome at any future gaming session as far as I'm concerned.


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