Thursday session: massive Wings of War, Truc, Masons

Wings of War box

This time we had a slightly larger game of Wings of War: we had nine players and everybody wanted to play. Well, that’s no problem at all, because we had a total of 11 planes available. I had the four from the Deluxe set, four planes from the second series of miniatures, an extra Fokker triplane and Petri had brought two planes as well.

So, we split 5-4 with Germans flying five planes in both games. To even out the game, the Allied forces had an extra plane they would use once the first player on their side was shot down. They didn’t really need it — Entente ruled over Germany in both games.

The first game was pretty bad for me. Actually, it was horrible. In the first round, I fly close to enemies, get shot, explode on the first shot. Game over, now let’s watch others fly for an hour… In the second game we didn’t use explosions. It’s probably a good idea when playing larger, longer games. In shorter games explosions are fine, especially if people play with multiple planes. That would be my preference, actually, since while the game works with nine, it’s slightly confusing… Having, say, four players, with two planes each, would probably be a better experience.

But we had fun, and I think I’m doing a good job selling the game to other people… The extra miniatures were, also, a good thing to have.

Hannu dropped by to do some trading and he had a fifteen minutes to kill. I was out of Wings of War at that time, so we — of course — played cards. Le Truc, to be exact. It’s a fun little game of trick-taking and bluffing. The game is played on a 32-card pack, with 7 and 8 high. Players get three cards and three tricks are played. No suits, high card wins and if the trick is tied, it’s spoiled. The player who wins either two tricks or the first trick if one is spoiled, wins.

The winner gets one point (game is twelve points), except… either player can add to the value of the game. First increase doubles the value to two and from then on, each increase adds two points. It’s also possible to add “my remainder” which means the amount of points you’re missing from twelve. If the opponent refuses the increase, the doubler wins the hand.

It’s a quick and brutal game. The hands often end before the first trick is finished: the elder hand drops down a card, says “two more?” for the double and the dealer surrenders. A killer 7-7-7 hand is actually pretty bad, because you can’t really get your opponent to pay you points for it — poker players will know about this, how to milk your opponent most effectively.

Truc is a fun little game, and good fun for a short time: one game takes just 10-15 minutes so you either fill a small time period or play for best for three or five for a longer game.

Masons box

My last game for the evening was Masons. It’s a fun filler, pretty much, with all the die rolling. Our game took 40 minutes, which is perhaps 15 minutes too much for my enjoyment, but we had newbies in the game, so I suppose it’s allright. At least we went under the suggested length of 45 minutes.

Next weekend we have Finncon, which is the biggest science fiction convention in Finland (and as far as I know, the biggest free con in whole Europe). I’m playing games there, of course… Finnish Board Game Society was at the previous Finncon organising some board game activity and that happens again this year. I’m running some train games: we’re going to start with Steam over Holland, continue with West Riding and then with some shorter Winsome Games, depending on how much time we have left. Should be a pretty intensive experience!

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