Clubbing – Epsom Games Club

Last night I took the plunge and headed to what is not my nearest games club, but the nearest one that I am likely to make with any kind of frequency.

Epsom Games Club is held at the Royal British Legion, in Epsom, and when I arrived, it was nice to see there was loads of space, about 15 people there around 4 tables.

My initial welcome was cautious and I immediately realised this was due to the fact that all the big games had JUST got underway – I’d been warned this might be the case as I was unable to arrive until 8pm, and one group offered to reset their game of Gods Playground to include the expansion, and thus me. They had obviously literally just set up, and were all ready to go, so I declined out of courtesy, and decided to sit the first series of games out with a drink and find a friendly table to spectate on, and maybe get to know the players.

Eclipse in progress

Eclipse in progress (CC-BY-NC-ND

As it happened, one table was mid way through a game of Eclipse, a game that interests me but I’d not really learned much of. The players were friendly, having fun and happy to explain the finer (and broader!) rule points as I asked. It was a real credit to them all that they were happy to have a spectator on their table, when that can be annoying and disruptive.

After about 45mins, just as Eclipse was nearing it’s climax, the table who had been playing Reef Encounter finished up, and invited me to join them for Attila.

I’d never heard or seen this game, now a decade old, and was not the only newbie on the table, but it was definitely a learning game for me (I came last by a 50 point margin or so!). The rules were clearly explained, and thankfully there were no last minute “oh yeah, I forgot to mention this game-changing point” moments, so I only have my inexperience of the game to blame for my loss.

Attila board game

Attila in progress (CC-BY-NC

Attila is a landgrab game, with (as the game owner explained) a Stock-market type mechanic. Card driven, you place markers on a map, gaining influence in that tribe for each marker you place. After a set numbers of conflicts are triggered (by having enough tribes in a region), scoring rounds occur, with players with the most influence in each tribe gaining Victory Points. After 4 scoring rounds, the game is over.

It’s a simple game with lots of strategic depth, but I felt hampered by the cards I drew, and failed to capitilise on some early strengths. I want to play it again now that I understand it better!

The evening was great, good fun and friendly crowd. I’ll be back when I can, and I’ll try to get there by 7:45 next time.

Author: hairyhatfield

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1 Comment

  1. Martin – glad you enjoyed your first visit to the Epsom Games Club, despite the wait to get a game, and look forward to seeing you again.

    For anyone else within striking distance of Epsom, we meet every Thursday evening, starting at 19:00. There is then usually 10 mins or so of standing around working out what to play, as everyone has brought 4 or 5 games each with them and there is too much choice, and waiting for stragglers we know are coming.

    There is also a once a month Saturday games day, usually the 3rd Sat of the month (unfortunately not this month as the British Legion venue where we meet is booked that day).

    Although I said Epsom Games ‘Club’, it’s not really a club, just some people who meet up to play games arranged via a ‘guild’ on boardgamegeek – Martin included the link. There is loads of room at the venue, there is no cost to attend and the beer is cheap (£2.30 a pint). We also have enough people attending that there is no pressure to turn up every week – we usually muster 10-12 people, sometimes more.

    Everyone welcome.

    Enjoyed browsing the site here by the way – the article on greyboard was very useful.

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