Monday, April 03, 2006

Daylight Saving Games

The Spousal Unit's dad and his wife (who is NOT her mother and if I thought there were a higher power I'd thank him/her/it for that) came from Nebraska to stay with us for 4 days while they go to the Final Four in Indy. Indy is only about an hour from our house so, why not stay here? Much like the SU and I, the SU's dad really enjoys games and his wife tolerates them. I think she likes playing but is just not passionate (re: competitive to a fault) the way we are. I don't think Daddy or Daddy's wife had played any of these games before. For both of my faithful readers here's a little rundown on the games we played:

We started with For Sale which is a light (doesn't burn much grey matter), quick (about 10-15 minutes) game where you bid on real estate of various values and then sell the real estate for as much as you can. Like a lot of games it's really a math problem with a theme attached to make it palatable. The cards are nicely drawn and it's a lot of fun. There's a fair amount of luck involved but enough skill and bluffing that you have control over your fate. I really like it a lot but the SU just thinks it's ok. Daddy liked it quite a bit. We played twice and I won once and the SU one the other.

After that we played a game of Liar's Dice. I made our copy of this game. It's been out of print for a while but there's a nice gameboard available on boardgamegeek that I printed out, laminated and bought a set of blue 10mm dice to go along with it. It came out really nice. I have the rules printed out on the back of the board and everything. I am a dork. Liar's Dice is another fast, fun game which again has quite a bit of luck (there are dice involved, duh) but you can do some bluffing, calculating and guessing which balances the chance factor out a little. It's a good time. Either the SU or Daddy's wife won, I don't remember. They were the last two remaining players though.

Then we taught them Tichu. This is a great partners card game but it does take a little getting used to. There are 4 special cards that do unique things and even the trick playing is different from any other game that I've played. It's definitely worth learning though. Daddy liked it but I don't think his wife was too fond of it. The SU and I like it a lot. I was partnered with Daddy's wife and we pounded on the SU and Daddy.

We played those games on Friday night and on Sunday we did some more gaming before and after the SU and my ice hockey game. Here's what went down:

We started Sunday afternoon with a couple games of Geschenkt. This game had also been out of print for a long time so I made a version of this one too. I didn't put the kind of "professionalism" I put into Liar's Dice but making a deck of cards is a lot harder than making one 8 1/2 X 11 gameboard. Besides, when I made our copy of Geschenkt we had never played it before and didn't know if we'd like it. Well, we got to try it out a few weeks ago with some friends of ours and we liked it a lot. It was recently reprinted in English under the name "No Thanks" but we call it Chip Whore since that's what you need to be to win. The next time we place an order with housefullofgames we're going to order the real thing so we can have nice cards. The cardstock ones I printed out are not going to hold up much longer. Besides, it's like $7. Everyone liked this game. I won the first game and Daddy's wife won the second. Actually she pretty much destroyed us the second game.

We finally busted out a "gamier" game: Ticket to Ride: Europe. This is the SU's favorite game and it's one of my favorites too even though she creams me just about every time. This game is an absolute joy to play. The board is very pretty and nicely designed and the pieces are great fun to play with and put on the board. There's a little bit of luck but the winner is decided MUCH more by creative and smart playing. This is a game I would highly recommend for people who are new to gaming since it's very easy to learn, doesn't take too long (an hour to an hour and a half), and has plenty of strategy and tactics which keeps its replayability factor high. I would play it anytime, anywhere. I also won for a change although I owe a fair amount of thanks to Daddy for foiling the SU's plans albeit by accident.

They won't be back until late tonight and they leave tomorrow so I don't know if we'll fit any more games in but it did satisfy my game addiction for a little while. But just like that nasty heroin habit I can't quite shake it left me wanting more.


SU said...

A bit of a clarification...I believe Phollower was thanking a possible higher power that the wife my Dad now has is NOT my mom, who is not a pleasant woman (to say the least).

elle_rigby said...

I find it hilarious that you put professionalism near the phrase "Liar's Dice".

Phollower said...

I hadn't thought about it but you're right. And I must hand out kudos to you for reading that entire post. I mean, even if you stopped just passed that part, the fact that you read as far as the professionalism part is unbelieveable. I don't know if they're your thing or not but I really get into "Euro-Style" games and I could talk and write about them for hours but when I went back and re-read that post I figured anyone not as obsessed by them as me would've woken up in a puddle of their own drool and gggggggggggggggggggg typed on the screen from when their comatose head hit the keyboard. And if you saw the version of Liar's Dice that I made, the fact that "professionalism" was said in the same sentence would be even more hilarious.