So, here’s the promised session report. First of all, I was quite satisfied as plenty of people came to play. I didn’t count the total, but well over ten, we had four games going on almost all the time.
My games started with Zértz — I’m trying to hook people into it. Jarno was my victim this time and as usual, I beat him up before he really knew what hit him. Well, I wasn’t quite that brutal, but I’ve yet to see someone figure out Zértz the first time they play it.
Then, it was time to play something meatier. Five of us gathered to play Princes of Florence which is the most criminally underplayed game in my collection. I was initially planning to try a strategy in which I would’ve bought only cheap things in the auctions, but after the game started with a jester auction, I noticed I had bought one with 1000 florins.
Then came another, and third one. So, it was my basic jester strategy again: only one building, many jesters, some landscapes and freedoms. It worked out ok, I got enough professions and recruiting cards to make it work. However, I placed third, over ten points behind the winner.
Tichu. Finally. I had tried to find out how long the game takes and after few useful replies from Spielfrieks, I decided to play only a half game. My team lost spectacularly 135-665. The game took an hour, so it was good we played only half a game, I think. We did see some really nice tactical blunders, beautiful 9- and 10-card straights and one very useful bomb too. It’s definitely a game I want to play again. I’d rate it solid 8 after one play, it’s very promising.
Drakon was next, and that didn’t please me quite as much. It’s sort of fun, for a while, then starts to drag as nobody can win as everybody jumps at the player who is about to win. I held four victory tiles in my hand with no intention to play them as I was the only player who didn’t have any gold — talk about boring, huh. I rate it about 4, won’t play it again unless I really have to.
I was looking forward to play Through the Desert as I’ve been thinking about buying it. I got interested as I read it owes much to Go, which I agree now I’ve played it. There’s similar feel to the game. I liked it a lot, and even got close to winning. It was a strange game, though — pink camels were used a lot and we ran out long before any other pile was even close. I managed to score the longest yellow caravan with only two camels! I was three camels away from enclosing a large area, which would’ve meant a victory to me. Now I was 2 points from the winner… Very good, a solid 9 this one.
Then some good old classics: Web of Power. We played with four, I’ve played quite few of those. I played heavy advisor tactics, but the winner was Robert, who played only one advisor during the whole game. It was a nice, close match, all four of us within 12 points (45-48-49-57). I was the 48, our newbie Jarno had 49 points. Quite good, but he did figure out the advisors well, which I think is usually the tough thing for newbies.
To finish off the evening, I introduced Africa to few of the guys. The reception was warm, even though we had a little mistake in the gameplay — I forgot to remove the two extra camps as we had only four players. Well, that was minor, the game just took a little longer than usual. Still, it was great fun even though I didn’t win.
So, to sum it up, it was a very good session which I enjoyed a lot (with the possible exception of Drakon).