Southampton On Board - 14 January 2014 - Blackmail, Cockroaches and Firefighters

Right, first of all I'm going to apologise for yet again, forgetting to bring my proper camera to the meetup. As such I'm forced to make do with my Ipad which as most people will be aware does not take very good photos indoors in the evening!

A good portion of the night was spent reminiscing as opposed to board gaming as most of us had not seen each other since prior to Xmas, but eventually duty calls and some board games were dished out. I was tempted to give Merchants and Marauders a try as it looked like a complex pirate Euro game, but as I was due to appear on the Dice Tower Showdown podcast yet again that same night I figured that melting my brain with a heavy Euro would not be the best plan. I therefore decided to go with Revolution, my only worry being that it was made by Steve Jackson games and I've kind of gone off them lately.

While this was happening, my fellow gamers were starting Glass Road along with the aforementioned Merchants and Marauders.

Revolution is one of those games where you have to be content with when things don't go your way. Effectively it's very simplistic and all you do is bid on various characters with different rewards for winning the bid. You reveal all at the same time and you give out the rewards. It works like a slightly skewed Rock-Paper-Scissors arrangement where as well as coins, you also have Blackmail and Force tokens which override each other in various ways.

"Glass Road"

It's not a bad game, but I didn't really connect with it. I just felt like it was down to mostly luck as to what you can do because you can only predict so much from other players. You've got 3 players opposing you and 12 characters to choose from. There is no way you can tell what's going to get taken and by how many bids. So for me it seemed too random for a Euro(ish) style game. Also make sure you nab the biggest cities at all costs, they swing the game A LOT!

"Merchants and Marauders - looks complex and I'm not sure that rose is symbolic of anything"

A few late arrivals were able to set up a new game they had recently acquired called "The Witches" which is the new light game based on the Discworld universe, of which I know absolutely nothing about. Honestly I've never read any of the books, it's only recently that I've got into reading and even then I prefer to listen to an audiobook in the car then actually read the book.

"The Witches"

After a quick break, we popped open Kakerlaken Poker to fill the time waiting for others to finish their games. This always goes down well and as you can see from the photo, I'm in the best position! Not tooting my own horn, but people should trust me so much more often because assuming that I lie will only land you lots of unwanted cards! Russell took the crown of "Loser" with a bizarre fetish for scorpions.

"Kakerlaken Poker - two people have three cards, GET THEM!"

With 6 of us available for a game after that, I was keen to teach the group Flashpoint: Fire Rescue - I love Co-Op games and this ranks in my Top 3 easily especially now that I have the expansion. I'm still getting to grips with memorising all the new additional rules so this was a great opportunity to refresh it.

I chose to keep the difficulty quite easy so I deliberately set the game up differently to accommodate the new players. Unfortunately this resulted in the game being a little "too easy" but it was still enjoyed by all I think. No complaints anyway! We had to rescue a family and friends from a burning mechanic's garage with living quarters in the attic. This meant we could experiment with large explosive objects, ladders, stairs, etc.

I did get one rule wrong with the Fire Engine in that I forgot you can't shoot it into areas with firefighters in - I really must try to not forget that in future, it's a big deal. But we effectively owned the fire in this one so note to self, never make the game too easy. But those who had played the game before remember me setting the difficulty to Veteran and the building collapsing on every one but me - see one of my previous SOB reports for more background on this.

"Aah Flashpoint Fire Rescue - I love this Co-Op!"

It was good to get a refresh on the rules for the expansion boards as I have to teach a group of new players a load of Co-Op games on Sunday and this is going to be the highlight of the day for me. I hope I never burnout on this game and we've even got a new expansion in 2014 to look forward to. Before that happens though I think I'll reserve a YouTube video review spot for the Extreme Danger expansion. Bring it on!

It's possible that I won't be able to attend the 20 January 2014 session next week so you'll understand why a report isn't done for that week. Happy gaming!

Games Played

Glass Road
The Witches
Merchants & Marauders
Kakerlaken Poker
Flashpoint: Fire Rescue