What a sad day today. I played three games of Go against Juho and lost all of them. I played black each time and in the last game even got one handicap stone. Ah, sadness.
Then Ilari came to rescue and we tried some piecepack games. First we tried Hanging Gardens. It was slightly confusing and I think I’ll need to play more to figure it out. The rules regarding the visibility of the flower beds weren’t completely obvious. Anyway, I want to try it again, to get a hang of strategy. We were quite focused on creating symmetry on the first rows, then Ilari jumped in the end of the game to a place with a lot more beds in sight, winning the game 10-12-17.
The guys weren’t too interested to play another game of Hanging Gardens and we tried Chariots. We weren’t quite satisfied with the game. The impulse system was complicated, the use of special tokens was unclear (I still don’t know how and when they are used) and it felt like there was nothing to do to stop the leader. The starting order was Ilari, me and Juho and that was how it was, during the whole race. Ilari won, then me, then Juho. With four players and more special actions to use, the game might be more interesting. Then it becomes more complicated… I don’t know, this might be worth trying again anyway.
Juho was especially relieved when we ditched piecepack and started playing Huutopussi (see Stones and Cards for description of the game). Juho likes the game, but this wasn’t his game… Ilari was a bit baffled about the game and didn’t take any auctions. He did okay, however. I started by going 110 points below, but then recovered when I gained 190 points during one round. When Juho lost 145 points during the same round (he didn’t get a single trick) and I gained 140 in the last round, there was nothing to stop my success.
Ilari had to leave, but fortunately Ari replaced him. We played two more games. Juho won the first one after just five rounds, collecting the required 500 points. In the third game we played seven rounds, after which Ari had the required 500 points. Huutopussi is a brilliant game, it’s certainly one of my favourites right now.
Last game of the session was a match of Power Lines. Now there’s a good game! Unfortunately I lost our two-game match 29-15. It’s a nice little abstract, which reminds me somewhat of Quarto. It’s certainly no Zèrtz, but it’s easy to figure out and gives a nice little brain workout.