May 19th, 2005

Old Friend

Board Gaming Fun and a return to RPGs....

We had another installment of our board games night adventures this evening. We didn't end up playing Shadows Over Camelot in the end but instead went for 'RA' and 'Ticket to Ride'.

I hadn't played RA for several years so we decided to dust down the box and give it another whirl. It's a fun, reasonably quick, bidding game and even though it took a few minutes for me to remember the rules I still managed to cream everyone and ealked away with a clear victory.
                                                                   
The next game up was Ticket To Ride which won game of the year over in Germany last year (the games equivalent of  The Oscars). Now winning this is very big news and 9 times out of 10 means the game is truly brilliant (Carcassonne, Settlers of Catan and Alhambra for example) and I'd heard a lot of very good reports about this one. The only thing that had mildly put me off (and had certainly put Dom into two minds as we'd spoken about playing this one a few times before) was its 'train' theme. I don't know why but train games have always carried a bit of a stigmata for me (I don't know why as I love 1825 and 1830) but I think it has something to do with my image of trainspotters and some of the very advid fans of train games that I've had to deal with over the years at work and conventions. Anyway, Ticket To Ride is a family game and only takes 30-60 minutes to play and it had received so much good press we thought 'why not' and broke it open.
Boy am I glad we did. This game is fantastic! Played across a map of America you are trying to build routes between cities to complete the Destination Cards you have in your hand. Some of these are fairly easy, others can be a nightmare. You have to plan your routes fairly carefully because you only have a limited number of pieces to use and with other players screwing you over by needing (and taking) the same, or quicker, lines you need it can really get you thinking. I loved it, we all loved it and we will hopefully be giving this one another shot in the next couple of sessions.
                                                                     
After we'd finished playing we had a chat about getting a RPG up and running. Dom and Nicole haven't RPG'd for ages and I haven't since early December so we're all sort of itching to get back again. Seth still plays in a regular weekly group so he gets his fix, even so he was up for a bi-weekly game alternating with our board games sessions. The problem (as always) is what to play and who to run it. Well we ended up narrowing the selection down to a handful of titles and then one suggestion started to run away from the others with Nicole frothing about it, Seth and myself agreeing it was a great setting and very good system and Dom getting caught up in the hysteria which has led him taking away my players book to read up on the background and world setting.

So what game will we be playing? 7th Sea. Starting in early July once Nicole gets back from Brazil. And I seem to be running it :)
                                

Not sure of the campaign or cultural make-up of the party yet though.
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Heroclix Goodness

I enjoy WizKids 'Heroclix' game. I've always been a fan of comics so when I heard of a prepainted miniatures game coming out based upon not only Marvel comics but also DC and various Indy titles I started gibbering and thinking of the enjoyment of using figures in the superhero RPGs that I (would love to...) run. I didn't really think that I'd actually play the game the figures were for, just the RPG potential I could get out of them.
Well I was lucky enough to help playtest a little bit for them before the game came out and that changed my mkind straight away. It was a great game and once I'd actually managed to get hold of the figures I was also pretty impressed (and they've gotten better with each set).
Anyway, WizKids have also done several special 'convention/promotion-only' figures over the last couple of years. I was lucky enough to get hold of Galactus last year in Vegas at GTS but had given up hope of getting the Dark Phoenix figure this year. Well at Salute a few weeks ago WizKids UK ran a prize draw in which if you won you could buy a Dark Phoenix from them. They had several in the draw but still alot of people entered. Well this morning by special delivery a parcel turned up for me and I'm now a proud owner of the Dark Phoenix figure. Go me!!! :p