To Court the King with Sasquatch

Jacob invited a friend over for some Magic: the Gathering action. After playing another prototype with Carey I joined in for some fun theme-deck action. I then forced To Court the King on the both of them with the claim "It's just like Magic, but with dice. And there's nothing to collect."

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That was good enough for them (like I gave them a choice) and we got through most of a game before it was time to check out the candy loot from Matthew as he returned from begging. There seems to be some depth to the game as the choices on how and when to use the characters are non-obvious. Still, it seems very tactical which will be fine by me if we can play it consistently in 30 minutes. Jacob and Bigfoot seemed to both like it.

More Matthew Highlights - Last Regular Season Game

Yes, I said last regular season game - we made the playoffs! After an 0-3 start, we won the next 5 games and qualified for the 4th and last playoff spot. This leads to a rematch against the team that beat us 8-0 in our 3rd game. The kids have really pulled together and it is exciting to extend the season for at least one more week.

Here are some highlights from the last game against Centennial, a brutal contest that we won 8-0 (a safety plus a TD). This was a defensive struggle that we thought would end 2-0. Matthew managed to break away on an inside trap play and score a touchdown. In the highlights you'll see Matthew (#63) at middle linebacker on defense and fullback on offense.

Twilight Struggle vs Ken

Ken and I got together about 2 weeks ago to play Twilight Struggle. This currently ranks as my favorite-game-that-I-rarely-get-to-play. Ken was concerned about the rumors he's heard that the game is broken in some way, but I assured him that it is just a bit imbalanced towards to Soviets. I offered to play the USA to perhaps balance out experience vs inherent imbalance and it seemed to work out just fine.

Twlight Struggle Mid War

I was fortunate to draw the European and Middle East scoring cards and control the timing in the early war, which helped mitigate losses for me and keep me in the positive VP territory for the early war and into the middle war. I worked very hard to keep the Soviets out of Central America by holding the Castro card for most of the early game but he made inroads with (I think) de-colonization anyway. Ken learned quickly about scoring and momentum and adjusted in real time quite nicely, balancing out the VPs mid-way through the middle war and setting up a potentially exciting finish.

Unfortunately it just got too late for both of us (around 11pm or so - we didn't start until after 8pm) so we called it a night. We both look forward to a re-match. I also can't wait to try out the new 1960: The Making of the President...

Age of Empires III

With a rare free Sunday, the boys and I took the dive into boardgaming again and played Age of Empires III. KC and I did a joint order at Funagain recently and I finally met up with him for lunch on Friday to pick up my games. This was one of them, along with Caylus Magna Carta and To Court the King.

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This game ranks pretty low on the complexity scale (compared to other big box games) and pretty high on the fun scale, though it did feel quite a bit like Caylus, Pillars of the Earth, and other games in this genre. The boys are inexperienced enough that they just enjoyed the game. We played this learning game in just over 2 hours, and I won by a healthy margin. The boys will learn to pay more attention to the scoring rounds and getting colonists on the board next time!

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Now it will be interesting to try Caylus Magna Carta to see if one scratches the itch better than the other. I love Caylus but it plays too long for most sessions. AoE seems to fit in the 2 hour category just fine, and Magna Carta should as well.

Game Class Starts

Class started today without a hitch. I opted for Walk the Dogs to keep the first day simple and play something known by about half the class (returning from last year). Next week I think we'll try Tsuro.

Games class

Side note - this picture was taken with the iPhone and emailed directly to my Flickr stream - pretty sweet functionality.