Sunday, July 26, 2009

May 2, 2009 - Two New Games

Location: Michael and Danielle's House
Players: Yoda, Steve, MichaelP, MichaelU

Today was a day of new games. Since the last Game Day, Yoda, Steve, and MichaelU had made a foray to a game store in Overland Park and browsed for a while and engaged the store personnel in some discussion about games. Between net research, looking at the boxes, and talking with the helpful lady at the store, MichaelU purchased Power Grid. The morning started with a quick perusal of the various parts of this new acquisition before putting it aside to start a game whose rules someone knew...

Merchant of Venus was the first order of the day - a game played previously by Yoda but new to the others. After Yoda explained the rules, everyone set to, revealing the various secrets in the game and settling into their chosen routes. Steve reached the goal of 2000 first, with MichaelU trailing not too far behind.

The ordering of pizza for lunch contained revelations. Pizza Hut's Pizza Mia is a Pizza No-No. You don't get normal Pizza Hut pizzas - you get pizzas made with special crust and sauce (sweeter), both of cheaper quality, no doubt. At least we discovered before we ordered...

Post-lunch, we decided to dive into Power Grid, despite none of us having read the rules prior to Game Day... rules which have been translated from German... poorly... (To quote Bloom County... "Foreshadowing, your key to quality literature" : ) What is a phase? What is a turn? What is a round? All exist in this game, but which is which still isn't exactly clear to us. Sometimes the translation uses the same terms to describe different concepts at different sections of the rules.

Coal, oil, uranium, garbage and wind fire power plants of various efficiencies. Profits from said activities allow you to build your network into more and more cities stretching across the board (the eastern U.S. in this case). Steve chose to become the king of garbage, a position which no one else challenged the entire game. Everyone else fought over the coal and oil, with the occasional dabbling in uranium and serious anticipation of and bidding wars over the truly green plants that produce power without consuming resources.

After navigating the shoals of the various turns/phases/whatevers, Yoda found himself in the catbird's seat with several rounds left to go, and the game marched to its inevitable end. Only after said end had been reached, did we discover upon looking at the rules a bit more that we had violated several of them along the way, making it harder for everyone to get enough resources (particularly Steve as the garbageman), and revealing that the catbird seat was on really shaky ground. We expect to get more things right next time...

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