Thursday, January 31, 2019

January Games

We got in a few games over the holidaze in December, and kind of tried to keep the ball rolling into the new year...

Tuesday, 1 January 2019

We started the new year off with a bang by having Kurtis and Brent over to play a few games.

To start off Kurtis, Brent, Amanda and I played a game of Nations. I played Rome, Amanda played Greece, Kurtis played Egypt, and Brent played Persia.

This was a bit of a departure from the last few games I’ve played where I played China and tried to focus on Stability and Grain production and more or less ignore military and wars and stuff and grow population as much as possible to get piles of meeples on industrial age buildings at the end of the game for loads of victory points.

It hasn’t worked. I always end up going last (because military determines turn order) and get nothing good and never, EVER get to use my special ability (first to pass gain extra grain…)

So, I thought I’d go a different direction and do military….

It didn’t really work out either…

There were startlingly few buildings for the first 2/3 of the game – and none that had more grain or stability… things necessary to sustain a growing population (because I was still trying to constantly grow my population!). things didn’t start going for me until the industrial age, but it was a little late…

Kurtis ended up winning with 51 points. Brent and Amanda were a bit behind with 34 and 36, respectively. I was trailing way behind with 23…

Maybe I have to admit that I just suck at this game…

I took a break from gaming to make supper for everyone, but The Girl joined them to play Century: Golem Edition.

Brent ended the game taking five cards… at the end of the game Kurtis had 4 cards, The Girl had three, and Amanda has only two… however The Girl ended up winning with 57 points! Brent and Kurtis both had 55, and Amanda had only 40.

After supper we played Terraforming Mars (again – it was the third time we’d played in the last week!). This time we played with the Corporate Era cards and advanced corporations. I had Ecoline – starting with just 36 Megacredits and some plant production. Brent played Teractor – which I think gave him some benefits with anything with the earth tag and he started with 60 Megacredits!!! Kurtis played Phoblog – I have no idea what they did – he was on the other side of the table and kind of just did his own thing. The Girl played Inventrix – I’m not sure what she was up to either… Amanda played the Tharsis Republic – she got additional money production any time someone played a city.

Playing with the advanced cards was super fun and added a whole bunch of different options to the game. It was a lot longer game and, while in our previous games the temperature was always the first thing to just shoot up, temperature was the last to be raised in this game. We covered nearly the entire planet with tiles – there was only two spots that remained uncovered – and that was because they were reserved for water tiles… and there were no more water tiles… I totally forgot to take a picture at the end of the game with everything all covered up. I think there were 15 cities…?

I think Amanda had an additional +30 Megacredit production by the end of the game – on top of the money collected for her Terraforming Rating. She also had 20 Energy production – and a card that turned energy into Megacredits one a one for one basis. AND she had the Martian Rails card, which, for the cost of one energy, she could collect one Megacredit for each city (remember when I said there were FIFTEEN!?). By the end of the game she was buying every card she researched and played them every round!?

I did okay – had a solid theme going on covering the world with vegetation…

All my bonus VP cards…

In the end, Amanda scored 94 victory points. I wasn’t too far behind with 81. Brent, The Girl, and Kurtis were a bit further behind with 65, 64, and 63 points, respectively…

Despite two of those games being on our 10x10 list – the entire family didn’t play either (Finnegan spent the day doing things on his own – mostly watching videos on the computer), so I’m not counting them.

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

A friend of the kids was over for the day and they played games on their own. I think they played Monarch, Sentinels of the Mulitverse, Just Desserts, Magic Labyrinth and Loonacy (I thought they were playing Uno for a bit because they kept shouting “UNO!” whenever they were down to just one card)!? Amanda was at work and I was cleaning in the basement, so… I didn’t get any pictures of those games – or record them on BGG…

Later in the evening we played Splendor as a family. This was the first official play for our 10x10 Family Challenge. Amanda just hosed us again – scoring 18 (when she only needed 15 to end the game). Finnegan was pretty close at 12, but The Girl and I were waaaaaaay behind… with 5 and 8… both of us probably would have caught up in a round or two. But it was a round or two too late!

Thursday, 3 January 2019

Second official 10x10 game – Race for the Galaxy with all the first three expansions – which is what we usually play with, but we’ve made a pact to separate out the cards and try out the other two expansions this year. We’ve had the other two for some time, but are not playable with each other or any of the first three, and so we’ve never gotten around to playing them.

For this game, I started off with The Ancient Race, Amanda had the Rebel Cantina, Finnegan had the Uplift Mercenary Force, and The Girl had Earth’s Lost Colony. Despite starting off with a few cards that suggested I might go with a Gene Theme, I just kept picking up Alien cards and went with that. Though Amanda had the “Rebel Cantina” she had as many Imperium cards in her tableau as Rebel – perhaps they were infiltrating the Imperium administrative architecture to take over from within…? She totally rocked this game, scoring 81 points – probably her best game ever. I did not-so-bad with 64. Both the kids were in the 30s.

Saturday, 5 January 2019

Finnegan celebrated his 15th birthday on Saturday (Yeah, FIFTEEN!!!) and invited a few friends over to play Dungeon Crawl Classics. They all made characters together and then he ran them through the same adventure funnel-adventure he ran the family through a few months ago. The idea of the funnel adventure is you start with a bunch of 0-Level characters – Fifteen of them between all the players – so when he ran it for Me, Amanda, and The Girl we each started with five characters. With this group, they only started with three each. All these 0-Level characters are ordinary citizens that have decided to give up their mundane jobs and become ADVENTURERS! They are potato farmers and money lenders and barbers and such (and have stuff like pitch forks and mules and scissors for “equipment”). Generally, they die like flies during the funnel adventure and the hope is that you have at least one survive to the end that then becomes a Level ONE adventurer of some sort.

He wasn’t sure how far they’d get (as we played all afternoon and late into the evening and only got through the funnel adventure), so he planned for a full afternoon and evening (with a break for pizza and cake). But they all finished the funnel adventure before I’d even made the pizza! So, while I was making pizza they levelled up and after supper started a first level adventure he has!

I was really hoping they could sort out a time (at least MOST of them) to get together on a regular basis and continue this campaign. They’re all such busy kids!

Sunday, 6 January 2019

Another game of Race for the Galaxy – this is actually our 50th game of Race for the Galaxy – according to BGG – and the first time we tried playing with the Xenos Invasion expansion. It was quite different – a fun and interesting kind of change…

In addition to the regular game going on, there’s this whole extra Xenos Invasion phase at the end of the turn where cards are drawn to see the strength of the Xenos invasion and you have to have enough military/defense to deal with it or one of your planets gets damaged. You can gain extra Victory Points by contributing to the war effort or defeating the Xenos invasions.

By the end of the game I had a bit of a mining theme going on. I could have done without the Alien Weapons Plans, as I didn’t get any other Alien cards… I guess it did give me some targeted military against the xenos invasion and I got to look at an extra card during exploration… Public Works was kind of “meh” as well…

Later in the evening we got in ANoTHER game of Terraforming Mars. It was the first the family played together, but, I think, the fourth game we've played in the last two weeks!?

This time I played the Tharsis Republic - the same one Amanda played in the previous game - and I totally crushed it. I ended the game with 73 points and the rest were in the 50s. It will be interesting to see if whoever plays Tharsis Republic always does this good!

I was also a LOT more selective about what cards I took in the research phase. Unless I could do it THAT TURN or it was AMAZINGLY good and worked really well with other things I already had on the go and I would for sure be able to do it within a couple turns, I just pitched it. Amanda again ended the game with a mitt-full of cards that she never did get into play. There are so many cool cards in the game, but you just can't do them ALL!!!

The map of Mars looked quite different compared to out previous game! I think we had completed getting all the water out and the oxygen up to 14% before the temperature even got to -10°C!? And waaaay less vegetation compared to our previous game.

Sunday, 13 January 2019

I got in a game of Warhammer 40,000 (8th Edition) with Halsten, the guy I'm teaming up with for the Apocalypse event in March. His Skitarri kicked my guard ass. There is a full report of this action elsewhere on the blog:

Friday, 18 January 2019

Finnegan has devised a bit of a narrative/tree campaign for Sentinels of the Multiverse. I have to admit, I've forgotten the fluff about it - something about Ambuscade (the villain) attacking the Freedom Tower looking for something...? I played Haka, The Girl played The Harpy, Amanda played The Naturalist, and Finnegan played Parse. Eventually we defeated Ambuscade and prevented him from stealing... whatever it was he was trying to steal...? 

Saturday, 19 January 2019

On Saturday, The Girl and I went over to a newish friends' house to try out Scythe. I say "newish" because we met two and a half YEARS ago and have been trying to set up some sort of game since... and it's just never seemed to work out!? Well... finally it worked out.

I played Scythe a few years ago at ToonCon. At the time I was pretty underwhelmed. It had been built up by so many people as being this AMAZING game - and I have to admit, I REALLY dug all the artwork. But when I played it... it just didn't live up to expectations. Mind you, I was playing at a table full of guys that has also never played, and none had read the rules, and because there was a few other tables in the same boat the fellow running the event gave us the most cursory explanation of the rules and left us to our own devices. It didn't help that there were a few very competitive people and by the time I was just starting to get a clue as to what was going on... the game ended... The guy next to me ended it be getting all of his stars on the board (the end game trigger). He lost though... as did I... 

In this game I played Bjorn & Box of the Nordic Kingdom. The Girl played Anna & Wojtek of the Republic of Polania. I kind of ended the game this time, by attacking the Rusviet Union - both of us had one star left and whoever won the battle, would put their star out and end the game (it wasn't me).   Once again, I was kind of felt like I was only just starting to get a clue by the time the game ended - but at least I was having more fun playing this time. Also, if feel like I have enough of a clue, this time, that if/when I get to play again I'll have a better idea of what I'm doing. I can now kind of see why the game is so popular. Not that I'm going to run out and buy the game - I know people that have it and can go play it with them! 

Doug - our host - had done an amazing job of painting up all the little minis for the game - which, for me, really added a lot to the game. 

Later, in the evening, Amanda and I headed out to the first session of a new Call of Cthulhu game my friend Bruce is running. Like the previous Cthulhu game he ran - this one is actually using the Call of Cthulhu rules - rather than Savage Worlds: Realms of Cthulhu. He's warned us it won't be so two-fisted and pulpy like the Savage Worlds campaign - and we should expect it to be much more dark and brutal and to have secondary character concepts ready... yikes!

We mostly just made characters - although Amanda and I had made our characters beforehand, so we kind of just sat around chatting while the others made up or finished off theirs. We did just start the first adventure... and then had to call it a night. 

Sunday, 20 January 2019

Sunday we played Power Grid Deluxe. It was actually The Girl's suggestion, but I was happy to play as I knew the next weekend I'd be playing it at FreezerBurn and knew I could do with a memory refresher. 

We played with the North American side and used most of the Northern regions. I kind of set up in a bottle neck and had the whole of the Northwest to expand into - this probably wasn't the BEST idea as the connection costs were VERY high. Amanda ended up winning the game by powering 16 cities. I wasn't very far behind at 14 and the kids each were able to power 13.

Friday, 25 January 2019

On Friday I convinced the family to play another game of Power Grid deluxe with me, so I could get some "practice" for Freezerburn  - which was the very next day. We played on the North American side again, but picked different regions to play in. 

Okay, I'm going to admit, this was a bit of a dick move...

 Amanda was so pleased with herself about having started in New York in her previous game and done so well because of it, she decided to start in Mexico City - which is sort of similar, in that it is one big city and you effectively get two cities without having to pay connection fees... except Unlike New York it isn't surrounded by loads of other really close cities with low connection fees and it's wedged into a corner. When she said she'd start there I pointed these differences and warned her that someone (okay, ME!) could effectively block her off in there. She said she didn't care and started there anyway. And I cut her off... 

Despite that initial set-back, she still did VERY well! We ALL did! By the end of the game we ALL were able to power 17 cities! It came down to the tie-breaker - Money. I actually ended up winning this game, largely because I was a little more conservative with my bidding on generators. WOO! I'm pretty sure this is the first (and probably LAST!) game of Power Grid I've ever won! 

Saturday, 20 January 2019

Saturday morning I headed over to John and Brenda's place for FreezerBurn - and annual day of gaming that John hosts every January. 

Yeah... all that "practice" I got for Power Grid? Did not help AT ALL - came in dead last! 

There is a full report of the games that went on that day elsewhere on this blog:

Sunday, 27 January 2019

Sunday the family got in a game of Castles of Burgundy - another one of our 10x10 Family Challenge games. 

This was the first time we tried it with the not-so-identical maps... The one above is mine. It was quite different from the ones that are identical - all my starting spaces are along the outside and each of them is adjacent to only two or three different types of hexes. I had one HUGE region - 8 hexes of City...? Where buildings get placed - which could mean HUGE points if I managed to fill it. 

Amanda's were a little in from the edge and she had a bit more in the way of options for what to do and where to go. She had a rather large pasture area. 

Though we played over two hours, this game felt like it went a LOT quicker than our previous two plays. I feel like we could get it done in under two hours with a bit more practice (which is exactly the point of the 10x10 challenge!) 

In the end I wasn't quite able to fill that big city area... To fill it I needed one of each building type and in the second last round Finnegan grabbed the last of the one I needed -  not beause he was paying any attention to my board and what I needed - he simply grabbed it because he has an upgrade tile that allowed him to build more than one of any type of building in any of his urban regions AND he had a scoring tile that game him four bonus points of each of that type of building in his land... So it wasn't malicious thing he did... but it still robbed me of at least 36 points! Which might have put me into second place. Lesson learned - if you have a HUGE area like that - get working on it RIGHT AWAY! make it a priority to get it done! 

Finnegan totally won this game with 243 points! Amanda and The Girl weren't far behind with 225 and 208 respectively... I was the only one NOT to break 200 points... taking up the rear with 198... Ah, well. it was fun. Looking forward to playing more of this throughout the year. 

Monday, 28 January 2019

Monday evening our friends Leanne and Taotao came over. While The Girl and Leanne were painting Finnegan, Taotao, and I played a game of Castles of Mad King Ludwig. It seemed to go REALLY FAST! 

Though I somehow ended up winning, despite having next to none of the types of rooms that got me bonus points at the end of the game, I didn't find it a very satisfying game. Not because of anything Finnegan or Taotao did, it was mostly because I wasn't happy with my layout... I mean, I generally don't care if I win or lose the game as long as I come up with a cool-looking castle! I guess I DID get a secret underground lair... so there was that... but the rest...? Well, it wasn't my best Mad Castle!

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

In the morning a friend of the kids' came over. He had the day off school and spent the whole day with them. They played Unstable Unicorns and The Girl ran the others through a game of Dungeon Crawl Classics.

I was busy clearing stuff out of the way in the basement for the boiler repair guys to come and do some work on our boiler, so I didn't play with them or take any pictures.


In the evening Finnegan's D&D group kicked off their new campaign! In December they finished of a campaign that had been running for THREE YEARS! This one is set in a world where everyone lives on Islands floating in the air - and transport between the islands is via airships. Finnegan will be chronicling the adventures of this campaign on his new blog:

Tome of Zzizzaazz

And that's about it for gaming! Whew! What a month!

We did okay on the 10x10 challenge - knocking 8 games off - at that rate we should easily complete this challenge this year! We've been doing a pretty good job of keeping Fridays and Sundays open for  "Family Game Nights".

Our next game is planned for Friday evening - Finnegan will run us through the second scenario of his Sentinels of the Multiverse campaign. Saturday evening Amanda and I are out to play Call of Cthulhu again while Finnegan will be running his Dungeon Crawl Classics game again. Sunday evening we're planning on playing Abyss!

I didn't get so many of my OWN Personal Challenge games in... I am also hoping to get in a game of 40K or Kill Team this weekend on Saturday and/or Sunday afternoon! And MORE 40K on the weekends through most of February - including some practice for the Apocalypse event at the beginning of March. Starting in March I'm going to try and play a game on the list every weekend - Saturday or Sunday afternoons - one GMT/COIN game and one Eklund game each month!

Next weekend I have a group coming over to make characters for a Wrath & Glory game that I'll be running on the Saturdays that I'm not playing Call of Cthulhu. I'm going to start off by running the Dark Tides series of adventures. There are five adventures each played at a different Tier - so I'll probably have them all make a new character for each adventure - that way they'll have an opportunity to try out a bunch of different archetypes and play at different tiers. After that I'll probably start a new campaign.

The following weekend is my annual Winter Wargaming Weekend - except this year it's going to be a winter ROLE-PLAYING Weekend due to a slight change in plans! I'm going to try and run a different group through the Dark Tides set of adventures for Wrath & Glory.

Though we did get in a fair few boardgames - and even a few role-playing games, it's been a VERY slow month for painting! I only managed to finish off four Ur-Ghuls and a pair of Valhallans!? What is up with that!? Going to need to step up may game if I ever want to play Blackstone Fortress before the end of the year!!

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Hopefully a game report of a 40K or Kill Team game this weekend... then maybe some new minis? I have a bunch I want to try and get done before the game weekend - for both player characters and their nemesises....? Nemesii...? Their ADVERSARIES!?

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

A Slight Change of Plans

This past year the universe of  Warhammer 40,000 has really captured my imagination. Part of it is nostalgia, part of it is just the setting and all the fluff. The only novels I've read in the last year have been Black Library novels. Probably 90+% of the miniatures I've painted in the last year were 40K figures. I'm really having a lot of fun with it.

That's not to say I'm not at all interested in historical stuff any more - I totally am. I just picked up Rebels and Patriots - and really looking forward to getting a chance to play it. But it'll have to be with minis I already have painted, because, for the time being, the only thing I seem to be interested in painting is 40K stuff. At some point the winds of change will blow through here again and it will be all redcoats all the time... Until then, I'm riding the 40K wave.

I've been pretty excited about Kill Team - though I haven't had much opportunity to PLAY it over the last month or so... I was hopping to ramp that up again in the next few weeks as I was planning to run a weekend long Kill Team campaign over the "Family Day" long weekend in February. It was to be a narrative campaign focused on the Ice world of Xoxigar Prime. I've been working on fluff and ideas for scenarios...

...and then I picked up Wrath & Glory last week - which had FINALLY arrived at my FLGS (Dragon's Den Games in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada).

So after a brief consult with all the players involved, the Winter Wargaming Weekend is now going to be a Wrath & Glory RPG Marathon Weekend! Wooo!

I was going to say I've never done anything like this before, but after thinking over that statement, I'm pretty sure there were some Jolt-Cola-fuelled, weekend-long, D&D/Star Frontiers/Top Secret/Palladium Role-playing game sessions in my teenage years... (the Jolt probably killed the brain cells where those memories were stored...).

Reading through Dark Tides, the first adventure anthology for Wrath & Glory, I got thinking the first one we might be able to get through on the Friday evening. I'm HOPING we might get through all five in the book over the weekend... but if it seems like we might not, I think I can trim a bit here and there to bring the weekend to an epic conclusion on Sunday afternoon/evening...

The book is interesting, I referred to is as an "adventure anthology" because I'm not sure it's really a "campaign" per se... There is an overarching narrative, it all takes place on the same planet, and in the first four adventures all the characters are working for the same Rogue Trader... but each adventure is meant to be played at a different Tiers.

The game, Wrath & Glory, is designed to be played at different Tiers - there is such a wide variety of archetypes that can be played and they vary so greatly in relative power level - I mean, stuff that a Space Marine could face down would end up with a Total Party Kill for a group of Guardsmen. So Tiers... Tier One is Imperial Guard and Gangers and the like. Tier Two is Space Marine Scouts, Sisters of Battle. Eldar Rangers, Skitarri, and Sanctioned Psykers. Tier Three is Tactical Marines, Tech Priests, and Eldar Warlocks. Tier Four is Inquisitors and Primaris Marines, etc. You get the idea. Now you CAN have Imperial Guard playing in a game with Space Marines - you just take the Guard archetype and "ascend" them to Tier three - whic mostly involves giving them the extra build points and some background reasons for why they're the most bad-assiest veteran guard trooper ev-ar... So the difference between a Tier One Imperial Guard soldier and a Tier There Imperial Guard solider, one would think is decades of war-fighting and experience.

It doesn't seem like decades pass between adventures, as they are somewhat related to each other... maybe a few months could take place between them, maybe a year, but not really long enough to realistically expect a character to ascend to a whole new Tier. So I was wondering if each was meant to be played with an entirely different group - players making new characters at the new Tier between each game... but then I got to one of the later adventures and it the introductory blurb the Rogue Trader mentions having to "call upon [the characters] once again"...? Which makes it seem like it IS supposed to be the same group...? I don't know... I'm giving them the option of either making a new character for each Tier or simply ascending a character.

The Fifth Adventure definitely requires making new characters - as it shifts focus entirely and the characters are supposed to be Aeldari working for a Farseer!? Still in the same system/planet/hive-city... and even involved in the same plot-line... but from an entirely different point of view.

perhaps it's meant to be an opportunity to try out playing different archetypes at different Tiers to figure out what level you really like playing at?

Regardless, it should be a fun time! I've got to go get some reading done!

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I WAS going to post some pictures of a few miniatures I finished up last night (NOT the Reaver Titan) but...

...and I do like taking pics outdoors in natural light... So yeah, those pics might have to wait a day or two!

Monday, January 28, 2019

Tome of Zziizzaazz

My son has started a blog of his own: the Tome of Zziizzaazz!

There he plans to chronicle the adventures of his character in the new D&D 5E campaign he is starting in tomorrow (with the same group that just wrapped up a campaign this past December, that they'd been playing for three years!). Also I think he plans to share character concepts he comes up with for various other role-playing games. I hope he chronicles the Dungeon Crawl Classics Campaign he is running now, and some of the other campaigns he is playing in.

If this sounds like your kind of thing, head on over and check it out - maybe leave a comment welcoming him to the blog-o-verse.

In Other News:

I've been adding pages and updating gallery pages (you can see them over to the left there...) and added a subscribe by email gadget - so you can get Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog goodness delivered right to your email inbox!

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Painting updates... a round-up of games we played this month... Some news about the upcoming Birthday Bash/Winter Wargaming Weekend.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

FreezerBurn 2019

I think this is FreezerBurn IX...?

FreezerBurn is an annual, invitational game day hosted by my friend John - the founder and one of the organizers of ToonCon. There are spots for 12 players who all play the same games throughout the day - scores, or, rather, positions are kept track of and overall standings reconrded. Everyone brings a game to put into the prize pile and the person in first place, at the end of the day, gets to pick first - so everyone goes home with a prize.

I went to the inaugural event, eight years ago. I meant to go to the one in 2015... but ended up in hospital instead. I did make it to the one in 2017. The others... I don't make it to for various reasons - more often that not, though, because John insists on sending the invitation email to an email address that I haven't used for over five years and I find out too late!?

This year's line-up looked a lot like FreezerBurn I - with Small World, Railways of the World and Power Grid all being played in both.

This year's game day didn't start as early as I remember previous ones... We all gathered at John & Brenda's place around 9:30 and started off with Small World.

Bacchus - one of the denizens of Chez J&B.


The first game I played in the morning was Small World, with (from left to right) Rob, Shane, Steve and Brenda. Brenda started off the game with Heroic Amazons and later took Pillaging Wizards. Rob took the Dragon Master Ghouls, Shane took Underworld Elves, and Steve took Bivouacking Skeletons. Rob was the first to put his race into decline (because, that's what you do with Ghouls - they can continue to expand and redeploy even in decline), his second race was the Spirit Giants - which was a great combo with the ghouls as, when they went into decline they didn't count as being "in decline" and thus he was able to have THREE races on the board at the same time (usually when you can only have one "in decline" if you start a third and still have vestiges of your first race, they are removed from the map). Shane started off with Underworld Elves and later took Wealthy Orcs. Steve Had Bivouacking Skeletons and later took Flying Ratment. .

I started off with Alchemist trolls. My trolls plodded slowly across the map taking up residence in as many mountains as I could because with their defensive Troll lairs it makes them very had to shift out - even when they're in decline. I eventually took five mountain areas and three not-so mountain areas. No one even bothered to try and shift them from their locations and I collected points for them throughout the game. The second race I took were fortified Dwarves. Which got bonus points for being on mines (dwarves) and for each castle they built (fortified). By the end of the game I only managed to expand them into four areas, but two of those areas were Mines and three had castles. So by the last turn I was bringing in 17 victory points. Not to mention I picked up three just for taking the fortified Dwarves, because no one else had wanted them and had been leaving victory point/coins on them in the market to skip over them.

I ended the game with 91 points - which won me the game. The rest were in the 70s and 60s..


While we were waiting for lunch to arrive a few of us busted out 7 Wonders for a quick game. This was not a part of the games that were counted in the standings. I had The Pyramids of Giza, Brent had Babylon, Darrin had Ephesos, Kevin had Alexandria, Steve had Olympia, and Dan had Halicarnassus. Dan won with 67 points, I was dead last with only 40... Throughout the game I was forever plagues with being handed hands with three or four gcards that would be really useful for me (which I could take only one of...) and then hand after hand of stuff that was of little use to me - or very expansive to put into play. Ah well - it was still lots of fun.


After lunch we played Railways of the World. I was Cornelius Vanderbilt - my secret objective was top build from New York to Chicago - never even got close to either city!? My other option had been the first to have a level 6 train - which never happens, so I didn't bother with that one. I wasn't the first to have a level six train - but I wasn't far behind - maybe I should have kept that one!? I ended up starting down near New Orleans - there had been a Service Bounty for a city down near there which I was able to do early on - which offset the early shares I had to take to get up and running. Eventually I built the New Orleans to Minneapolis major line - and just as I finished it, there was a service bounty for Duluth - and no one was even close so I extended my line up to there and snagged that one too. I actually did one six point delivery along that line (from Duluth to New Orleans) - most were 3/4 point delivery - though there were a few 6 point delivery to Chicago, which I had to share a couple points with Steve for each because I had to use his lines to get in there...

Kevin (black) mostly built around the south east along the sea. Steve (purple) built a few things around Chicago. Rob (yellow) was building right in the middle of the map - mostly south east of Chicago and west of the mountains. Dan (green) totally dominated the Northeast - and so he won... NEVER let anyone be the lone builder in the Northeast...


Princes of the Renaissance is a  fun game by Martin Wallace which I had never played before. It's played over three Decade/Turns. unfortunately it took me the entire first decade to figure out the economy and mechanics of the game and by that point all of the good military stuff had been snapped up and hoarded by a few of the players and they dominated any military confrontation for the rest of the game - which can vastly change how many victory points you get at the end of the game... Super fun, though, I'd really like to try it again now that I have an inkling of what you're actually supposed to do.

Despite having no clue in the first decade, and feeling like I was floundering in the next two. I did quite well - one point off of first place.... One of the biggest sources of victory points were from city tiles - you got victory points per tile based on the prominence of their related city at the end of the game - though my cities had been driven down in prominence (due to loosing a lot of military conflicts) I still did well because I'd actually bothered to collect city tiles - I had six (the maximum you can have - and I think the most anyone else had was four...?

John had the standings posted on his widescreen TV all day.

At the end of round three I was actually in first place.... and then we played Power Grid...


I ended up playing Power Grid Deluxe - the other table was playing the original Power Grid. Power Grid deluxe is actually the one I own - and have played twice in the last week, although the last two plays were on the North American side and this evening we played on the European side.

The game was pretty fast and furious - it ended before we even got into the third step!? I ended the game only being able to power 10 cities. I had really hoped that 36 - or ANY 5 or 6 city generator would drop down into the available market for me to pick up in the last round we played... but it all ended up being 2 and 3 city generators (which were utterly useless to me). My network had expanded to 12 cities, and I had a pile of cash that I could have expanded to a few more and/or bought any larger generator that became available and at least tied for last with 12-13 cities... alas... Still, lots of fun. I just like playing this game.


That total flop in Power Grid dropped me down to 4th...

These were the games that were brought for prizes. They're supposed to be new or "near new". A few people bought new games, others brought games they had that they weren't going to play anymore. I brought the Neanderthal - which I never even got to play, but ended up crowdfunding the new edition along with the new edition of Greenland, so... didn't really need it. I ended up going home with Sidereal Confluence, which looks pretty interesting. It was a game of Brent's - he figured since John also had it he didn't really need to own a copy any more as if he was ever playing it, it'd either be at john's or with whoever took his copy home. The same thing happened at FreezerBurn 2017 - I took home Brent's copy of Nautilus - I've played it twice since then - both times with Brent!

All in all - a totally fun day of gaming - and I got rid of a game I didn't need (hopefully Rob who took it home gets to play it and loves it as much as I love Phil Eklund games!) - and brought home a new game that I would probably never though to buy, but looks pretty interesting just the same. Finnegan had a good look at it when I got home and seems pretty interested in it.

Coming Soon to Tim's Miniature Wargaming Blog:

Aa update on the Wargaming Birthday Bash/Winter Wargaming Weekend (there have been some changes...).

I'm hoping to update a few of my miniatures Galleries - as they are all hopelessly out of date. Some I just need to copy pictures in from painting update posts. Others I want to take new pictures for.

By the end of the week there will be a post about all the gaming we got up to in January and an update on the progress of our assorted Gaming Challenges I laid out in Game Plan 2019 (Spoiler: We're doing pretty good so far!)

There might even be a game report of some 40K or Kill Team action in the not-so-distant future, and the next painting update will probably be the Reaver Titan I've been working away at...