Last night saw another mid week meet up of the Fenland Gamers. The group is growing with six of us attending this meet up. Which meant that we split up into two groups of three to play games. I'm looking forward to the time when we can reminisce about the humble beginnings of the group. Jonathan and Matt deserve a big pat on the back for starting this group up.
While the other group adjourned to another table to play some games, myself, Gavin and Debbie set up to play Imperial Settlers.
Gavin had been wanting to try Imperial Settlers, I had been wanting to play a full give ever since the aborted short game with Nath that he didn't enjoy. The game had been sitting on my game shelf ever since mocking me.
We chose our factions, Gavin took the Romans, Debbie the Egyptians while I took the Barbarians. Which meant no one had to play the Japanese who apparently are a little different/more difficult to play as a beginner faction.
We did our initial card draw, and then started going through the phases of the first round. Resource wise the Barbarians compared to the others were resource poor. Their main resource being people! Just to be able to building buildings I was having to trade people for wood.
Debbie and Gavin were getting resources quicker than I was. At the end of the first round they definitely had the beginnings of their engines in place.
But I hit pay dirt with two cards. I got a resource card that I could use twice in a round that allowed me to get wood cheaper. The two uses was all I needed to get a resource out that would then allow me to get two wood for one person. This allowed me to be able to get the resources I need quickly to start building my kingdom.
In the third round I got lucky and drew some awesome faction cards. Well awesome for me, super annoying for the others. I was able to get a victory point bonus when I razed something. Another resource allowed me to get two raze tokens for one person. One card allowed me to get the resources or victory points when I razed an opponents building. This would give me in combination with the other card five victory points every time I razed an opponents building! Then another card allowed me to get rid of opponents Deals and get victory points!
The thing is it seemed to me and probably the others too, that the Barbarians were too over powered. I'd have to play a game with them in again sometime, but with someone else playing them instead. It could be I just was getting better card draw than the others and got an efficient scoring engine going.
But the Barbarian faction cards are super thematic, and basically force you as the Barbarian player to go be a dick to the other players. And yes there was some inner turmoil about being so aggressive in a first game for us all. But I managed to beat that conscience back into its box, so that the Barbarian side of me could continue commanding its hordes to go out and conquer.
My last actions in the final round, round five where basically me spending raze tokens to raze the buildings of Debbie's and Gavin's little empires. So reducing their score, while pushing mine up even further. Remember five victory points each time I did it.
Unsurprisingly my Barbarian horde conquered all before them, reducing the surrounding civilisations to ruins, giving me a convincing victory.
Below Jonathan's photo of my Barbarian Horde.
While my Barbarian horde was off doing dickish things to all those before them. Jonathan, Katie and Jo were playing Brew Crafters travel card game (which I have and haven't got round to playing – so I'm up for playing this sometime) and Ivor the Engine the game. Yes a game based on the old childhood favourite, which apparently also has sheep it. I'm curious to give this a play sometime, despite I think when I was young being a bigger Noggin the Nog fan (although looking on bgg there is also a boardgame of this too, which is classified as a roll and move game)
Our last game of the evening was Camel Cup. Which allowed all six of us to sit round the table and play.
Visually this game looks amazing. The pyramid dice tower in the middle just looks so impressive. Having to use it by tipping the pyramid upside down to get a single dice out does seem a bit gimmicky. But hey what a gimmick.
My tactic if you can call it that was not to bet on the camels during the race, but to try and cut that opportunity down for the others by rolling dice as often as possible to cut down on the opportunities of the others to gamble and earn money that way. Early on I bet that blue would win the race, and yellow would come last.
Then it was doing my best to try and facilitate that outcome. Sadly yellow made a surprise sprint to the front of the pack. However Katie rolled a blue dice that put blue in front. I could of done a loud “yes” at this point. Next round blue crossed the finish line first.
I had slowly been accumulating coins by rolling the dice, while the others won and lost by betting. Having called the winner I got a nice bonus, but was it enough?
Gavin won this game, but only just. He beat me by one coin. one coin!
Another great evening of gaming with the Fenland Gamers.