I particularly enjoyed the board game club I attend last Thursday. There was a nice atmosphere in the pub and everyone was happily enjoying their games. It was someone’s birthday and he brought in cakes for us, that didn’t go too well with the ales we were drinking but we merrily ate anyway. Half the people were off to his for a gaming session over the weekend to celebrate more.
We waited a while for more people to turn up. Some people play filler games at this point. I’m usually quite happy with my pint just looking at all the games people have brought. At a dozen people, and a couple more to follow later, we flocked to a few tables following the games that interested us the most.
One table were playing an earlier edition of Condottiere that was in a huge box, needed for a large board and utilised big tarot sized cards with lovely art on. If you’ve seen it in the shops recently you’d have noticed box for the newest edition is tiny with regular sized cards and it remains a very recommended game. I’ll be discussing it in the future soon enough, as I have my own copy that I haven’t got around to playing yet.
I really fancied playing it but I have a rule where I hang back and play the less popular games. That way I have more chance of stumbling upon something new every week to write about. The nice things about the popular games are that I’ll eventually get my game. I’m still waiting on Condottiere and Citadels because I know that I or someone else will always bring a copy in because they’re so tiny to chuck in your pocket on the way out of the door.
For those of you who have played Condottiere, there seem to be a few minor differences rule-wise but cause a big impact on the game. The biggest was a Bishop card in your deck that can be used to bring about the end of a round. To be honest, I’m going to have to trust you understand that because I didn’t have a clue what was going on!
Another table were playing 7 Wonders. Again, a game I haven’t played yet but have some knowledge of and have my eye on for a future purchase. I would have played that but the sneaky gits said they were going to be playing Small World. I’ve played loads of that in the past so I went off to our third table to play something else entirely.
You’ll get the review of that game later in the week as I got halfway through the review for my regular feature and found myself writing a disclaimer that was getting longer than my final verdict of the game. The problem was that I wasn’t sure if the game could be properly judged from just one play. Is it fair for me to “yea or nay” a game after one session and a few hours play?
Arrogantly I have decided for you. YES! Yes, it is okay for me to pass judgement on a game despite having only had one game of it.
This is how the Clubbing feature works. This isn’t a proper review website where I get given a game and I play the crap out of it for a week before getting another game next week. I get three hours a week to pop down the pub, play something that looks interesting and then tell you all about it.
Most of the time the games I play are something new to me from someone else’s collection and I only have one or two games to form an opinion. Then I decide if I would recommend it to people to buy or at least giving it a go. This is the same judgement that any one of you would make for yourself were you in my place.
How much extra time are you going to give to a game that just doesn’t float your boat? How many games would you need to play a game you enjoyed before it started getting dull? We all make these snap decisions and stick with them until something contradictory is forced upon us so we can re-evaluate.
My articles aren’t just about what games you should be buying and trying. They’re about getting your arses out there to play strange games with even stranger people. It’s about me spending three hours of my life a week being pleasantly surprised, mildly disappointed, or just merrily tipsy losing at something.
Caution: Small Parts isn’t like other tabletop gaming websites. It allows a group of enthusiastic folk to post whatever we like about on the subject. Whatever amuses us, interests us or get us so passionate about that just we have to tell other people. We are you. Hell, if you can prove you can write about games you could be we.
On that note…
I got to play Flash Point: Fire Rescue again over the weekend with The Missus (as she will henceforth be named). Sure enough, it was just as fun as the first time I played it and The Missus seemed to enjoy it enough to ask for another game straight after our first.
We played the standard two player with only two fire-fighters. I think I was right with my initial guess that you should play 4 fire-fighters between the two of you because it just doesn’t balance quite right with only two on the board. It costs too much and takes too long to get to the other side of the house and you don’t have enough specialists to keep control of the fire and save people. But 3 and up, no problems.
Also as I thought, the theme was well liked and made the concepts of the rules easier to explain and comprehend. It has a nice amount of logic to it. The manual feels like they’ve really tried hard to explain the game but I fear breaking it down between simple and experienced rules makes it much harder to follow. You have to flit across the two to double check everything. But it’s okay because odds are what you think the rule is, you’re probably right.
So what was I talking about again…oh yeah, go play some games.