Posts Tagged '7 Wonders'

Weekend Gaming: Relaxing

Gina and I played Hawaii and Race for the Galaxy Friday night.  In Hawaii, I was trying to be efficient and only bought a single side two fruit.  I was getting good deals and had quite a bit of fruit, but I really didn’t have enough goods each round and I still failed to meet the target at the end of a few rounds.  Gina, on the other hand, was playing with Spear Huts.  She was regularly picking up around 10 points each turn, and I just could catch up.  I did come close, only losing by 15 points.

In Race for the Galaxy, I started with some strong military cards and with some nice Uplift windfall planets.  I also had a Genetics Lab that let me refill those planets so I could trade the genetic goods for cards.  I picked up the New Galactic Order about halfway through, and that was the difference in the game, adding about 15 to my final score.

On Saturday, Ryan, Jaime, Joe, Louis, and Kevin came over.  We started the night with 7 Wonders with Joe sitting out to watch their newborn.  I was trying a money to science/civilian strategy, but I didn’t get enough money and didn’t really see much science.  I did score quite a bit off of civilian cards, but not enough.  I was in last place with 46, while Ryan had a nicely balanced setup and 60 points.

Then Ryan took off, and Joe took Jaime’s place for Hawaii.  All of the huts and the tikis were close to the beach, so I started with the intent to fill my island with Kahunas.  Problem was that I was going last on the first turn.  I missed out on any huts, but I did spend everything I had on Kahunas, which were pretty cheap.  In round two, when I wasn’t able to get a long hut early and the other huts were too expensive, I went to plan B.  I was able to get a side 2 boat relatively cheap, and I grabbed the top island for a foot hut.

From there I continued on my island dominance.  I was able to get the boat/surfer god, and a few more islands, netting me some nice points.  I did end up with huts in all of my villages, but I wasn’t able to get any tikis until the last turn.  Because of that I was only able to score three of my villages.  Even though I was in first going into final scoring (Gina was in second from spear huts and Joe was in third from getting end of round bonuses all game), I didn’t think I had a chance.  Louis pulled in 45 points from all of his kahunas, but not much more.  Gina and Joe only had about 20 end game points.  Kevin had a ton from his irrigation, hula girls and fruit god, but it wasn’t quite enough.  My three kahunas, one hula girl and my boat god were just enough to eek out the win by two points.

The group finished the night with a game of Dominion with Intrigue and Prosperity.



Everyone seemed to either have a Militia or Goons, so having 5 cards on a turn was a real treat.  I was pushing a Peddler, Minion, Trade Route strategy that started with a couple Militias to get things rolling.  I was off to a slow start, while Joe had started minting gold and was buying Provinces fairly regularly.  He wasn’t able to push the end of the game soon enough, though and started to stall, while I started hitting runs of Peddlers and Minions with 4 coin Trading Posts.  I was able to grab three Colonies to go with my two Provinces and Estates to put me at 44 to Joe’s 41.


Gina and I weren’t tired after everyone left, so we played a game of Agricola.  My hand seemed to just go together well, and I actually ended up playing all of my cards.  I had the Bookshelf to help play more occupations, and my Animal Tender allowed me to keep animals in my house early, which I used for food.  The other two major occupations were the Adoptive family allowing me to use my new family members more effectively and one that let me fence in stables when I built them, keeping my wood costs low.  I ended up filling in all but on space and had points in nearly every category.  It was an incredible game that scored me 57 points.

Weekend Gaming: New Games!

For Father’s day, my lovely wife was kind enough to order me Castles of Burgundy, Hawaii, Navegador and Agricola.  They all arrived on Wednesday, and we tried Castles of Burgundy first with Joe and Ryan.  Not much to say about the game yet, but it was fun.  It took a bit longer to learn than expected, but once we got into the game, things flowed pretty smoothly.

Then Saturday afternoon, my wife and I sat down to learn Navegador.  Navegador has a unique action mechanic where the players travel around a circular rondel that has eight actions.  Each turn, the player’s token must move clockwise around the rondel and can take any of the next three actions for free, and if they wanted to move further, they need to pay.  It makes planning future turns interesting.

The game itself was pretty fun.  Lots of things going on between the market interactions and the exploration of new colonies.  I ended up investing heavily into sugar and spice colonies, with bonus points for the number of colonies I had.  Gina was using factories to process sugar, so we managed to keep the prices of sugar fluctuating so we would bot maximize our profit.  I had also explored a bunch, so that netted me a bunch of end game points.  Gina was able to get quite a bit from her factories, but my exploration and colonies were enough to push me into the lead.

That evening, Ryan, Brian, Louis, Joe and Kevin joined us for games.  It was Brian’s first time playing many of the games, so we started off with two games of 7 Wonders.  In both games I invested heavily into Science.  In the first one, I did well, but I was just short of being able to play the Science Guild, which would have been a significant improvement.  As it was, I ended up one point shy of Joe in the final tally.  In the second game, I was playing Halicarnassus and I was able to search the discards for two additional science cards.  I also received the Science Guild in my Age 3 hand again, and this time I was able to play it.  With that, I was able to get three of each science for 48 points just from science.  That wasn’t enough, though, as I only had seven other points.  Gina managed to trounce us all, as Joe and I hadn’t built any military, so she was able to get 18 military points from a single card.  She managed to score a whopping 67 points.

We then split into two groups and managed to play two games  at the same table.  Kevin, Brian and I played Dominion while the others played Eminent Domain.  Kevin managed to win both games of Dominion, though in the second game with the Big Money set I had a very efficient deck using Chapels, Labs and an Adventurer to pick up nearly a Province a turn once I got it rolling.  Sadly I had one dead turn, and ended up a Province behind Kevin at the end.

We regrouped for Shadows over Camelot after that.  Brian and I ended up as the traitors, and both of us were playing too subtly.  Most of them managed to bum rush the Grail quest and actually complete it, while Joe and Kevin fought the Picts twice for wins.  There were 5 white swords on the table before a single black sword was seen.  My only hope was that they had been putting a bunch of Catapults early to try and accuse people before there were any white swords.

We managed to get within two catapults, but it wasn’t to be.  After winning the Excaliber quest, I took a bunch of the Fight Cards to “fight” the catapults, but then left Camelot basically revealing myself.  Joe accused me, correctly, and that pretty much ended the game.  On Brian’s turn, the last black sword was added to the table, and it was a 8-4, but since Brian was a traitor, two white swords flipped to make it a 6-6 tie.  Ryan had played a white card earlier, though, that allowed the Knights to win a tie, so the good guys ended up winning.

Keeping with that theme, we finished the night off with a rousing game of Monty Python Fluxx, which was won by Kevin scoring the Cheeseshop Goal.

On Sunday, Joe and Ryan joined me to learn Hawaii.  Joe was had two large villages with lots of fruit in one and hula girls in both.  Ryan was scoring a bunch of points during the game with fishing huts and ended the game with two moderate villages with Kahunas.  I focused on Kahunas and Tikis after getting some boats to get islands and the god that allowed me to move anywhere for one foot.  I was able to maximize my Kahunas and Tikis to score all of my villages for a whopping 63 points in the end game scoring.  This launched me into first place for the win.

The game was a lot of fun, and played very quickly.  It only lasts five rounds, so there is a push to get a lot done in a short period of time.  We were just getting things figured out when the last turn rolled around.  I am definitely looking forward to playing this one again.

Until next time, happy gaming!

Weekend Gaming: The Wonders of Trains and Castles

Ryan, Kevin, Louis, Joe and Dana joined us for games on Saturday and we decided to start off with 7 Wonders with everyone.  I was doing alright up until the second age, when I passed on an Iron resource.  Joe didn’t pick it up, and I didn’t see another iron for the rest of the game, really hampering my plays.  Everyone was pretty even after Age 2, but then Dana grabbed a ton of science cards in the third age, helped with her wonder’s ability to play cards form the discard pile.  She pulled ahead significantly and finished the game with the win.

For the second game, Ryan sat out and we broke out Railways of the Western US.  My baron was to connect and urbanize two cities in the Northwest, and I was able to do that fairly early, along with picking up the Passenger Lines bonus for shipping different colors.  After that, though, things went downhill.

Louis was getting a ton of use out of his Hotel: Denver, and at the same time he started working on the Golden Spike bonus of going from San Francisco to Omaha.  My stuff was pretty disjointed, but I had opportunities to finish the major line from Portland to Ogden and San Francisco to Promontory.  In each case, though, I was trying to do it with as little debt as possible.  Joe and Louis were willing to spend the debt, and I ended up being a turn too late in both cases.

On the last turn, I was finally able to connect Tacoma to LA for a major line, which bumped me up to fourth, but Kevin and Louis were still way out in front.  Louis actually ended up winning by five points after completing the Golden Spike.  The first time someone managed to do that without going crazily into debt.

The night ended with Kevin, Louis, Joe and I playing Caylus.  I was originally planning to gather goods and support the building of the castle.  Louis very quickly built the three wooden production buildings and was gathering goods faster than I could.  I was able to grab cloth a couple times and was the only person building civilian housing.  I was able to use the extra cash and the inn to get a bunch of extra actions while the others were struggling to make due.

I was third in turn order with three good production buildings, so I was getting last choice of those buildings.  For some reason Stone was rarely being picked.  I ended up stocking up on a bunch of stone, built the Stone Builder location and then the Build Monument tile.  Joe had meanwhile built the Money-to-Gold tile, so I was able to use that to gather gold in anticipation of building the Cathedral for 25 points.

The problem, though, was that Kevin was consistently alone in contributing to the Castle and then using the bottom favor track to build the high point stone buildings.  By the time I was able to build my Cathedral, Kevin was already 30 points ahead of me.  I had the goods to build another monument, but there wasn’t going to be another turn. I ended up tied with Joe, five points behind Kevin, with Louis only a couple points behind us.

A good night of gaming, with some very close games.  Until next time, happy gaming!

Weekend Gaming: Mother’s Day!

Happy late Mother’s Day to all the moms out there!

On Saturday, Louis, Kevin, Ryan and Dana joined us for games.  While we were waiting for Dana to show up, we played a game of Dominion using a random set of cards from Dominion, Intrigue and Prosperity.  I was able to us a Chapel to basically trash my entire deck and then build it back up with Quarries and a Workshop.  I was able to build a very efficient engine with Festivals, Cities and Conspirators, and finished the game buying up three Colonies and a Duchy over the last three turns for the win.

Then we broke out 7 Wonders, and I was doing alright, but had spent a bit too much on resources early.  That was necessary, though, as Ryan was to my right and hadn’t grabbed any resources.  That plan didn’t work out too well, as he ended up in last place, while Louis had a nicely balanced kingdom for the win.

Next up was Acquire.  We had taken my in-law’s copy of the game that is about 40 years old last time we visited them.  I had to buy some replacement stock cards on Ebay, but otherwise the game was wonderfully intact.  Conversations were flowing pretty well at this point of the evening, and I wasn’t really paying attention to how the stocks were being distributed.  I ended up with a majority share in the second largest company at the end, but it was Dana who managed to run away with the lead by holding large shares in the two largest end game companies.

Ryan, Louis, Kevin and I decided to play some Nightfall: Martial Law, and while I won, it was a very odd game.  I was able to get a combo where I could exile the top card from everyone’s deck.  I did this three times, and each time I got one of the cards that Ryan had bought.  This meant that after he had played out all of the starter deck cards, he only had 3 cards total left in his deck.

We finished up the night with two games of Monty Python Fluxx, which were both won by Louis.

On Sunday evening, Gina and I played a couple games of Ticket to Ride: Europe with the Big Cities expansion cards.  We each won a game, but the Big Cities cards definitely made the games interesting.  Because everyone is making connections to the same cities, there is a lot more conflict for the routes and more opportunities to use the Stations.  It also means that once you connect a few of the major cities, there is a very good chance that drawing more routes will provide routes that you have already completed, making for a very high scoring game.  The first game Gina won with 13 completed routes and a score of about 190.  I won the second with 18! competed routes and a score of 220.

Until next time, happy gaming!

Weekend Gaming: Birthday Bash

This weekend we visited my parent’s place so that my wife could visit some friends and go shopping for her birthday and our anniversary.  We ended up playing a ton of games as well.

On Friday night, she and I played three games of Ticket to Ride: Europe.  I won the first two, and lost the third.  The second one was interesting in that I took routes that really had nothing in common, and ended up crossing the bottom side of the map while Gina crossed the top edge, leaving the center almost completely ignored.  In the third game, I tried to complete as many routes as possible.  I ended up getting 9 routes completed, but with no long routes, so I wasn’t quite able to pull off the win.

Ticket to Ride: Game 2

Ticket to Ride: Game 3

Then on Saturday, Joe and I taught Nick how to play Hansa Teutonica while the girls were out shopping.  The game was a bit rough for Nick, as Nick was not able to get a third action for the entire game.  I wasn’t able to get much going either, though and Joe ended up winning.

Hansa Teutonica: Joe 51, Andy 35, Nick 21

Then we played a quick game of Dominion: Hinterlands, which I was able to win using mostly Highways, Crossroads and Margraves for extra buys.

Later that evening, after a dinner of sushi, we started the real gaming madness.  We started with Joe, Nick and I playing Hansa Teutonica while Gina, Dana, Jaime and Laura played Ticket to Ride.  After that, Dana and Nick swapped places and Joe, Dana and I played the Hansa Teutonica: East Expansion while the others played Settlers of Catan.

We followed that up with a couple games of 7 Wonders and a final game of Timeline: Inventions, which I had picked up for Nick while I was in France.

Overall it was a pretty crazy day of games and fun.  My wife had a great time shopping and we got to go out and enjoy a nice dinner with our friends.

Until next time, happy gaming.

Weekend Gaming: Happy Easter!

My family spent Easter with my relatives, but we still managed to get some gaming in.  My wife and I stopped by the local game shop on Saturday and picked up Ticket to Ride: Europe as an early anniversary present.  Then that afternoon we played a game of 7 Wonders with my sister and her fiance, which was won by my wife.

On Saturday evening, we taught my grandma and cousin Ticket to Ride.  Things were a bit insane, as everyone was getting pretty tired.  My grandma misunderstood the game ending conditions and at one point, when we reminded her that the game ended when someone ran out of trains, she proceeded to dump her trains on the floor.  It was pretty silly, but we all had fun.

Then, on Sunday, our daughter threw quite the tantrum from lack of sleep, and we ended up missing church.  Instead we managed to get her to take a nap and my wife and I played a couple games while waiting for everyone got back.  I managed to take the first one, but the second one I was beat solidly when Gina finished the game with about 8 completed routes.

April is looking like it will be pretty crazy on the weekends.  Hopefully I’ll get some games in on the weekends, and there is a game of Risk Legacy that Ryan is starting up, so I’ll try to document that as well.

Until next time, happy gaming!

Weekend Gaming: Jet Lag

I got home from Paris Friday evening, and  crashed pretty hard after spending 20+ hours in airports and on planes.

Joe and Britta joined us Saturday night, and none of use were up for learning a new game, so we broke out some Dominion.  We played the Lucky 7’s setup from the Prosperity and Intrigue sets.  I had a terrible time getting anything going, while Joe and Britta were cruising along pretty well.  We all thought Joe had the game well in hand, as he had bought a couple Colonies, but Britta actually managed to overtake him by buying a bunch of Provinces.

Ryan showed up at this point, and we played some 7 Wonders.  Again I was having a tough time doing anything, and finished the game in last place.  Britta and Joe both did very well, and Joe ended up winning by a point.

After that, Britta called it a night, so we played some Princes of Florence.  I was able to get a strong setup needing only the large buildings to do my works.  I was also able to pick up a couple of Recruiting cards to get the others that I needed.  I spent the last two rounds just playing Works, which was enough to put me in first.  It was close, though, as Gina picked up 18 points with a single work using Bonus cards, and Joe had 3 Prestige cards for 21 points.  I ended up winning by only a couple points.

We finished up the night with a couple games of Euchre.  I had to teach the game to Ryan and Joe, but they caught on pretty quickly.  Both games were surprisingly quick.  I was getting very lucky hands and managed to get a couple of 6 point hands in each game, and managed to win both.

Overall it was a nice relaxing weekend, and I’m very happy to be home.  Until next time, happy gaming.

Weekend Gaming: Football Weekend!

Pretty fun weekend around here.  On Friday we spent the afternoon over at our friends’ house where we celebrated their daughter’s first birthday and watch the NDSU Bison football team win the FCS championship.  It was a blast.

That evening, Louis, Kevin, Ryan and Joe joined us for games.  First up was Acquire.  I started one of the smaller companies, and then it immediately grew to the point where it wasn’t going away until the end of the game.  Because of this, I wasn’t able to get into any other companies.  I barely had enough money to get into a tie for the most shares in my company.  In the end, Joe and I tied for that one, and he had controlled enough of the smaller mergers to easily take the win.

Next up was Railways of the Western U.S.  My baron required that I connect and industrialize Dodge City and Santa Fe.  Because of this I was doing a lot of shipping in and around Denver.  Sadly, because I went last on the first turn, I wasn’t able to snag the Hotel for Denver.  Louis go that card, so I was feeding him a bunch of points even while I was making points for myself.  Kevin and Gina had control of the West coast and were making some deliveries there, while Ryan had decided to go for the Golden Spike bonus and built all the way from Omaha to San Fransisco.  Joe was all alone in the lower Midwest, and Louis had a solid grip on the Salt Lake City region.  Louis was making consistent 3-4 point deliveries and with the bonus points I was providing him, he easily won the game.  Over all, though, it was a pretty low scoring game, with all of us sitting at just over 20 points (Louis had about 30).

We followed that up with a quick game of 7 Wonders.  I was playing Rhodes, and focused pretty heavily on military.  I was having difficulties, though, as I wasn’t able to get Stone until the end of Age 2, so I wasn’t able to start on my Wonder.  Then I forgot about Iron and wasn’t able to build the second stage of my Wonder.  Regardless, I still did alright with maximum military points and two very strong Guilds.  It wasn’t enough, though, as Ryan had pulled off 38 points worth of Science and edged me out by 3 points.

The last game of the night was Puerto Rico, with Ryan sitting out.  I went heavily into a Trading/Building strategy.  I was able to grab both Markets, and was routinely selling Coffee and Tobacco for big money.  I was able to build three of the big buildings.  Louis was doing a very strong shipping strategy, while Kevin and Gina were more balanced.  Joe was also doing a lot of Trading and Buying.  In the end, I was able to put up 43 points, which just barely beat out Louis’ 41 points.

Sunday was spent watching more football, while I worked on painting some Razorbacks for my Space Wolves army.  I am nearly done with one, which just needs detailing and weathering.  Here is a work-in-progress picture:

Overall a great first weekend of 2012.  Happy gaming!

Weekend Gaming: Finally Football!

Saturday night started out with a short game of Zombie Dice while everyone was arriving.  Joe jumped out to a quick lead while everyone else was having trouble scoring anything.  Kevin eventually managed to catch up a bit and hit a good streak setting the game to finish with a score of 16 brains.  Joe managed to get within one, but then busted out.  Ryan had a good streak as well, but he was trying to come back from nothing and just couldn’t get enough.

7 Wonders then hit the table and I ended up playing as Giza (a Wonder I don’t normally play).  I focused heavily on Civilian points and my Wonder and it worked out alright.  I had very minimal resources, so I was buying a lot from my neighbors.  Louis had a much more balanced game and picked up a lot of points from military, to take the win by about 8 points.

Ryan had brought Le Havre over, so we broke that out.  Since it only supports 5 players, Ryan sat out to get a break and help with the rules.  It was Gina’s and my first time playing and there is a lot of detail to the game.  It was designed by the same person as Agricola, so the gameplay is similar.  There food resources that need to be paid each round, action selection is similar to Agricola, and there are a ton of little pieces to the game.  That’s about where the similarities stop.  In Le Havre, you are trying to gain money/points by creating the best harbor.  Each round is made up of 7 actions split among the players.  So in a 5 player game each player typically gets 1 action, but two players will a second.  This rotates over the course of 20 rounds for a 5 player game.  At the end of each round, there is a food cost that is needed to pay your workers, which increases over the course of the game.  The actions consist of taking resources, building buildings and using buildings.  Only one person can use a building at a time, and you can’t use the same building multiple times, so that is a big part of the strategy.  The other interesting thing is that you are not limited to your own buildings.  You can use other players buildings any time you want (provided they are unoccupied), but many of them have a cost that must be paid to the owner.  So a big part of the strategy is to get buildings that other players will want to use, so you can get paid.

It was definitely different and I was having a tough time taking it all in.  There’s just a lot of options.  I didn’t do terribly, but I started off the game taking on a ton of debt that haunted me all game.  I was able to finally get rid of it at the end, but it took up turns that could have been better used for other things.  Also, my building choices were a bit weak.  I was trying to get a lot of buildings to maximize the benefits of my Arts Center (the player gets cash for the number of other players in his buildings), but it didn’t really work out.  It was pretty obvious that Joe, Kevin and Louis had played before, since they knew exactly what they were doing as they all ended up with at least 15 more points than Gina or I.  Joe ended up winning the game by a couple of points.  I like the game, but I will definitely need to play a few more times before I can really make a call.

After that, Kevin, Louis and Ryan took off, so Gina, Joe and I played another game of 7 Wonders.  While we had played a number of 2 player games, we’d never tried it with only 3.  It was definitely a different experience from the 5-7 players we’re used to.  There’s a lot more planning involved in what cards to pass and more foresight into what you’ll see in later hands.  In our game, Gina ended up with a very strong military strategy and took a bunch in Guilds as well to take the game by 10 points.

Sunday was spent enjoying the first real weekend of football and it was a nice relaxing weekend overall.  The first in quite a while.  Until next time, happy gaming.

Weekend Gaming: It’s a Small World Full of Monsters

Joe, Jaime, Louis and Kevin joined us on Saturday for some new games.  I had picked up Nightfall: Martial Law last week, and Louis had brought Small World: Underground.  I hadn’t played Small World in ages, so I was pretty excited for that one.

We started the night off with Nightfall.  Jaime sat out so we had the five players.  I had a very powerful wall minion in Legion Ten, but I wasn’t able to consistently get him into play.  Joe was able to build up a big army, but even then it wasn’t enough.  He made himself a bit of a target, so everyone ganged up on him.  I had left myself too open and took a few big hits.  All the while, people were pretty much ignoring Gina.  She finished the game with only three wounds, for the victory.  Kevin was a close second with five.  Nightfall with five players is a bit crazy.  I think if we played it a bit more, we’d get the strategies figured out more, but right now, there seems to be a few people that get hit hard, and one or two that get ignored and end up winning.  It can be a bit odd at times.

After that, Jaime joined back in for a couple games of 7 Wonders.  The first game I was doing quite well with a bit of everything.  I was able to get to 60 points, but Joe edged me out with a 62 point game made up of mostly Guilds, Civilian buildings and military points.  In fact he had 30 points just from Civilian buildings alone.  The second game I ran into a bit of a snag.  I was really limited for resources, and while I was trying to go with a Science strategy, it just wasn’t going my way.  On the final turn, I was able to grab a couple more Science structures and scored 34 points on them, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Louis’ 64 points.

For the final game, we setup for some Small World: Underground.  Jaime sat out again, so it was just the five of us.  I started out the game as the Wise Ogres.  My plan was to use the Ogres ability to attack with fewer tiles and spread out quick, then go into decline and use the bonus from the Wise ability.  Luckily I was able to get a bonus location early that basically my one of my regions immune to attack, so I was able to ride that bonus for the entire game.  Sadly, my second race was less than effective.  I had taken the Vengeful Liches because everyone had been skipping over, so there was a bunch of points on them.  I didn’t get to use either of their abilities, and the points I was getting from the Ogres was too good to pass up at that point.  At the end I had a respectable 83 points, but it wasn’t anywhere close to Louis’s 104 or Kevin’s 99.  Both of them had been able to consistently get 15-18 points each turn.  It was a lot of fun.  I really like Small World and Underground added a bunch of fun new combinations and Relics that add a bit more excitement to the game.

Overall it was a good weekend.  Good games were played, and I was able to get my ‘Ard Boyz army finished up, so expect a post on that before the big tournament next weekend.

Until next time, happy gaming.


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