Minpencon 13

Am I doing this right?

TigerBill wrote:

Am I doing this right?

Who knows?

My travel to pencon is cursed, whether min or big. We were just told that the crew isn't here yet. Supposed to be departing at 8. We shall see.

Edit: looks like they finally showed.

If anyone needs my cell, shoot me a PM.

Join the group me for fun shenanigans: https://groupme.com/join_group/42155...

Oh man. I work in Lewiston, NY but live in St Catharines, ON. The border is bananas right now because of Boston. Thank goodness I can leave straight from work to Solon and don't have to deal with the madness.

I survived minpencon13.

Bravo, but are we sure you didn't die and turn into a IMAGE(http://www.bradleyrobertson.com/files/images/ZombiePenguin_1.jpg) ?

So, how did it go? Are everyone's livers still functioning?

Drinking was pretty light this year. Oily and I did have a beer at 10:30 this morning, though. I'm planning to do an AAR for all of the games I participated in a bit later on...

carrotpanic wrote:

Drinking was pretty light this year. Oily and I did have a beer at 10:30 this morning like bosses, though. I'm planning to do an AAR for all of the games I participated in a bit later on...

Helluva great weekend! I'm glad I made the mission to Solon!

carrotpanic wrote:

I'm planning to do an AAR for all of the games I participated in a bit later on...

What's an AAR?

Superbeard wrote:

Helluva great weekend! I'm glad I made the mission to Solon!

carrotpanic wrote:

I'm planning to do an AAR for all of the games I participated in a bit later on...

What's an AAR?

After Action Report

Minpencon13: Another great time had by all! As these events go on over the years the slight nervousness of meeting people you've only known online has given way to something akin to old friendship. It's nice to catch up and I think it's safe to say that we all feel comfortable enough with each other to let the sh*t talking and joking begin immediately. Hoxie and I got in on Friday at 3ish after using our ninja skills on Oily's house to jack a cooler full of games from his mud room without him even knowing we dropped by. We met up with NSMike, Obirano, Bill, Mono, Keldar, and Lady Blue shortly and the games began. Here are the games I played:

Incan Gold - The first game to hit the table was Incan Gold, which Mono taught. A fun game of push your luck it encouraged many a shout of "WHY COULDN'T YOU HAVE WAITED ONE MORE TURN TO BACK OUT, YOU SCREWED US BOTH!" In the first game, Bill put the wood to us with one daring run deep into the temple. The second game was won by someone, that I can't remember.

Cosmic Encounter - Cosmic was a great time as always, and pretty madcap with 6 or 7 players (can't recall exactly). I ended up taking the victory with my mostly Remora play (piggybacking on other player draws and warp retrieving was powerful with the extra number of players). Toward the end, my race got flip flopped with Mono's poison people, but it was a little too late since I was able to generate gigantic hands with ease.

City of Remnants - What started off as a confusing mess of many different systems (area control, worker placement, production/trade, bidding) eventually gelled for most of the players and we enjoyed this new Plaid Hat games product. I still think the mechanics are kind of pasted on, but we had a close match between turtlers/developers and fighting factions with Mono pulling out the win, I believe. I'd like to play this again sometime now that I can tell what's going on.

DC Comics Deck-Building Game - This game is straight up milquetoast. It is the most boring and straightforward deckbuiding game I have ever played, from the single currency down to the rip off cards (oh, this is the moat...oh, this is that card from Penny Arcade). The art is nice, though, and it's fun to earn a kick by punching three times or even punch the bat signal twice to defeat it. I think Doak won but we all tried to forget the game as soon as possible. Not a bad game if you've never played a deck builder and/or you are a DC nut but I'd otherwise stay away.

Formula D - To end the night (wrapping up at around 3 am) we had a 10 person game of Formula D. Doak billed it as the best roll and move game of all time and I'm inclined to agree! There were plenty of hilarious moments in this light fare such as when Hoxie nearly exploded his car by pushing it into 6th gear just because he wanted to roll the big die and Cheeto endlessly trying to ram people to make them explode. Psoplayer won with some great cornering at the end of the race, and several cars crossed the one lap finish line with only a single point. Poor Jake blew up and got passed by my slow ass.

Saturday

Manhattan Project - Manhattan Project was a huge hit for Hoxie, Keldar, Mono, Psoplayer and I. Very well themed and with great art, this worker placement game has you racing to be the first to assemble a suitable nuclear arsenal. Along the way you must train new workers, scientists, and engineers, perform conventional airstrikes to shut down your opponent's personal buildings, mine yellow cake, and enrich uranium and plutonium. Hox won in a blitzkreig fashion with not much warning, just a few turns before another couple players were about to make their deadly strike. I'd love to play this again sometime and straddles the line between interesting, accessible, and slightly complex that is close to my worker placement sweet spot.

Guildhall - This game seems like rummy on the outside but in fact it has Kingdom Builder level hidden depth and opportunities to make really devilsh plays if you consider the order to take your two actions. At one point I stole Keldar's nearly complete professional chapter and completed it with my second action to benefit from all his hard work. There's a lot of interplay in this one, and all of the roles were good at one point or another in the course of the game, which hints at a well balanced game.

Airlines Europe - Airlines Europe is an Alan R Moon game (Ticket to Ride, etc.) that is partially based on Airlines and Union Pacific. NSMike, Cheeto, Hoxie, Mono and I vied for greater shares of different airlines as we boosted their popularity throughout the game, taking scoring snapshots at key points. Cheeto employed a dastardly "second place" strategy and road the coat tails of the greatest airlines to get smaller (but many!) rewards for being spread all around, earning him the surprise victory. I really dug this one, which provided a lot of tension despite its "do one thing per turn" simplicity a la Ticket to Ride.

Catacombs - This was my first time playing with someone else, since I just picked it up a month ago and had only played a solo game to teach myself. Psoplayer took on the role of the four adventuring heros plunging into the depths of the underworld to defeat my evil Lich's hordes of fodder villans as we took turns flicking wooden discs at each other's units to resolve combat in a test of dexterity. It was never much a challenge for Noah, even though we both had several nice missile sots. In the end his berzerker went berserk all over my poor skeles.

Citadels - Toph got out to the lead in this old favorite, with a rush of low priced buildings flourishing without the presence of a Warlord to strike them down, but Scott came back for a huge victory with more powerful buildings. As Doak said right before I killed him for the second turn in a row: "If you get killed twice you're screwed." Later on I was also killed for the second time. Damned assassin!

Just a couple more games to get to and then some random comments, I'll get to those when I can...

I am not 100% that my liver is still in tact. (Surprise?)

Really I am struggling more due to lack of sleep. Bed at 4ish the first night and then 5:45 the second and up by 9:45 to hit the hotel breakfast.... Someone remind me why I did not take Monday off?

I had so much fun again this year. Piggybacking on Carrot's comments (I am a pro piggy-backer now), Every once of these gets easier and easier. It is just like falling back into it with old friends. It also allows me to play many more games each time because I just jump right in.

As always I would like to specially thank Mono, he is such a good teacher and patient with idiots such as myself on games I have never played (all of them). Oily as a teacher on the other hand..... well he and many others DID only play it once

I will say Spartacus was a blast Friday night. I believe it was my first game of the weekend (besides Xbox fighting games) and really a cool game. Striking sinister deals, using power, manipulating people were all so fun. I still may be a little bitter I did not win due to being slightly intoxicated and misplacing a card everyone already knew I had hehe.

My Order of the Stick game that took around 5 hours was a blast as well.

Thank you everyone and the next one can not come soon enough.

Had a great time this weekend guys, thanks for all the games. I wish I could have come back on Sunday as well, but as it is I spent more time in that conference room than I had planned. Sadly other tasks required my attention.

It was great meeting some new GWJers (Hey, psoplayer and SuperBeard!) and seeing all of you that I met at the last PenCon. Thanks for putting this thing on again Oily.

Rather than rewrite my AAR, I'll cross post from the BoardGameGeek's what did you play this weekend thread. The highlight for me though, other than listening to Cheeto browbeat folks in Spartacus right from the first hand, had to be the game of Tomorrow. I am really looking forward to this one coming out.

Okay, more!

Spartacus: Hoxie, Oily, Obirano and I played from 4 to 12 and it got off to a weird start as I spent all of my money to host (obviously not what I needed to do) because I thought I would win the fight I put myself into. Well, I had terrible dice luck all game, but this was a huge mistake on my part since I forgot about the upkeep cost and promptly lost two of my gladiators at the start of the next round (I was team red guys, who need gladiators). Hoxie was the guard guild and he kept drawing tons of guards so there wasn't too much we could do to stop his card generating machine. Oily got really close to winning (11 points!) but Hoxie smacked him down to 7 in the blink of an eye. I like the bidding, the interplay, and the conniving, but the combat in this game is fairly dreadful and unsatisfying. Not to mention that two people sit there and do absolutely nothing while the dice rolls go on and on. It seems you can snowball your way out of the game, but not necessarily to a victory, since the first person to rise up gets beat down by schemes and reactions. I liked the game but I wasn't blown away like a lot of people have been.

Core Worlds (with Galactic Orders expansion) - I had played this once before, at pencon last year, but this was my first time with the expansion and I agree with Mono that it's a must add. The expansion adds the ability to stash cards in your deck to thin out the terrible starting cards so you can actually draw the good cards you buy, and a really fun mechanic that lets you specialize in certain tech/special abilities (giving you more actions, energy, battle strength, buying power, etc. when you choose to cash them in). As a result I feel like you have more control over how the game plays out. Psoplayer, Oily, Mono, Hoxie and I battled fiercely, but Oily crushed us hard in the end with his crucial flight/cruiser specializations paying off when he nabbed the key core worlds (although for a second it looked like Mono was going to steal one away, he didn't have quite enough juice to do so). Hoxie and I tied for second, with a more varied style.

Random thoughts:
-I hyped Zoup up quite a bit and while it was never going to meet those expectations, I think people generally enjoyed it.
-We didn't get to play Eclipse, but that was my fault. I backed out when I realized what the opportunity cost was going to be. It turned out that I played three really great new games in that time that would have been spent on Eclipse, so I think it was a fair trade.
-As mentioned, Mono was a great teacher as always, but extra props to the teaching videos we found on youtube for City of Remnants and Airlines, which just weren't clicking from the rule book right away. Technology is great. Also props to Psoplayer for reading over the Manhattan Project rules the night before we played so that we had someone to teach us.
-Thanks to Teneman and whomever else chipped into the giant cooler of delicious beer. There wasn't a ton of drinking this year (except cheeto and nsmike, perhaps) but that's not necessarily a bad thing, either.
-It was really cool to meet/spend some time with a couple of people I didn't know too well: Obirano and Superbeard. Both really nice dudes!
-We ate through 2/3 of the 6 pounds of gummi candy in one night, and the rest the next morning. The smell that came out of that bag when it was accidentally billowed was horrifying and gave me a minor headache.
-Mono is an extreme continental breakfast hoarder. I can't complain though, since that biscuit at 4 in the afternoon when I hadn't had lunch did me right.

Thanks for the fun times everyone; can't wait to do it again!

I'm kind of glad we didn't play Eclipse. It's coming to iOS this week anyway.

oilypenguin wrote:

I'm kind of glad we didn't play Eclipse. It's coming to iOS this week anyway.

Submitted this week. Probably won't be available until next week. Not that the anticipation is killing me or anything.

Teneman wrote:
oilypenguin wrote:

I'm kind of glad we didn't play Eclipse. It's coming to iOS this week anyway.

Submitted this week. Probably won't be available until next week. Not that the anticipation is killing me or anything.

I posted this in another thread but you can buy the Eclipse boardgame on clearance for $25 at Barnes & Noble. All the stores in NE Ohio are cleared out already though.

Also, hoping to make it out to the fall event. This weekend was a crazy blur and I just couldn't get out to Solon.

Teneman wrote:
oilypenguin wrote:

I'm kind of glad we didn't play Eclipse. It's coming to iOS this week anyway.

Submitted this week. Probably won't be available until next week. Not that the anticipation is killing me or anything.

Stupid ipad only games grrr.

No pics yet? Shame.

Here's one. I don't know if many were taken.

Here's our Manhattan Project underway:

IMAGE(http://i.imgur.com/rOoRYV7.jpg)

Carrot I think you may have missed a game?

What was the name of the game we played Sat. The alien spaceship game with the 6 big die, i still could not roll?

Hoxie ended up owning us all with his leet tactics...

Oh shoot, that was...

Alien Frontiers - I liked this one a lot as well. Worker placement with dice as your workers, this one afforded a lot of choice and the opportunity to be tricky if you had special powers. Unfortunately, that also lent a lot of analysis paralysis to people and the game got pretty bogged down with five (myself, superbeard, cheeto, hoxie, mono). Hoxie got a bunch of powers early that let him spend resources to alter his dice rolls and protect him from theft, and my early lead failed to hold as I lost a die, more than half my resources, and I think a power card all in the span of one round of the game. My local shop has this in their library and I'm keen to try it with less people to see if it plays quicker/more simply.

carrotpanic wrote:

Oh shoot, that was...

Alien Frontiers - I liked this one a lot as well. Worker placement with dice as your workers, this one afforded a lot of choice and the opportunity to be tricky if you had special powers. Unfortunately, that also lent a lot of analysis paralysis to people and the game got pretty bogged down with five (myself, superbeard, cheeto, hoxie, mono). Hoxie got a bunch of powers early that let him spend resources to alter his dice rolls and protect him from theft, and my early lead failed to hold as I lost a die, more than half my resources, and I think a power card all in the span of one round of the game. My local shop has this in their library and I'm keen to try it with less people to see if it plays quicker/more simply.

I played this with Mono at PAX and really liked it.

Oh, and in the grand tradition:

Game of the Show (for me) - MANHATTAN PROJECT

Runners up: Alien Frontiers and Airlines Europe

IMAGE(http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/pix/2011/07/25/article-2018726-0D28CF4100000578-817_468x286.jpg)

carrotpanic wrote:

My local shop has this in their library and I'm keen to try it with less people to see if it plays quicker/more simply.

It does, but it's pretty obvious that AP is especially high with new players as you're wrapping your head around how it all comes together. I expect it'd play a lot quicker with experienced players.