Monday, July 1, 2019

Monthly Summary for June, 2019

Whew, June just flew by.  I, once again, spent most of my time in the basement actually working on getting stuff organized and unpacked, and I actually made really good progress this month!  I feel confident that post-July 4th festivities, I'll actually have time to sit down there, and finally enjoy some of the benefits of having my own space :)  Take a look at my progress:
Showing my basement space from the door into the basement- a nice four by four table in
the middle lets me play most games easily, and I have shelves everywhere for storage. 
Plus a desk for working on some projects!

View from the other side of the basement.  Easily enough room for another table, and you can
see into the unfinished part, where I have a bunch of racks for storing games!

My birthday also occurred on the 21st- I'm 36 now.  Yay.

Games Played
  • Tsuro of the Seas - Three games against Christian.  I had played the original Tsuro plenty of times, but I had never played this version, and Christian had no experience playing either version.  We sat down, read the rules, played three games (I ended up losing twice), and I can say I don't really care for it.  The monster movement slows the game down (not much, but enough that the pacing is really disrupted), and the movement ends up being so random and chaotic at times that it really isn't much fun.  I think the expansion to this allows some way for the players to have some control over the monsters, but I have no experience with that, unfortunately.
  • KeyForge - Two games against Frans.  I use each of my two decks once, against a new Horsemen deck he had, and end up beating it once with each.  I am going to use some new decks next time- I think my decks might actually be pretty good!
  • Azul: Stained Glass of Sintra - One game against Christian, and I win by about 12 points.  This is a pretty good game, and we both played mostly cleanly (only one dropped glass apiece).  He crushed me on bonus points, but I managed to score my panes in the order that gave me the most points, and ended up victorious.
  • Batman Fluxx - My hatred of Fluxx is well known, but Marina had never played, and Megan and Christian decided to teach her.  I did as best I could, and mercifully the game was over quickly... with Marina as the victor.  She didn't love the game either (thankfully!).
    Early-ish game.
  • Catan Histories: Rise of the Inkas - One game against Marina, Christian, and Megan.  My streak of wins in this game comes to an end as Megan ends up winning, with the rest of us actually within striking distance (probably our closest game yet).  This is apparently Marina's favorite version of Catan.  I like it well enough (I prefer Cities and Knights).
  • La Garde recule!, The Gold Beach Landings, A Matter of Honor, Sire, The Omaha Beach Landings, Operation Cerberus: Channel Dash, The Toast of the Town, The Utah Beach Landings - One game of each, all solo.  These are all part of the Pocket Battle Games series by Against the Odds.  Basically, wargames that fit on a postcard.  Mostly, they weren't that good, aside from the two Napoleonic ones.  There are just serious issues with the design that I think detract from the enjoyment of them, even as a quick, casual experience.  I won't get into it here, but maybe someday I'll write some thoughts about how NOT to do attacker/defender scenarios (and a pretty popular game will get called out for it as well!).
  • Warmahordes - One game against BK.  I take my Rask WWFF list, and he takes his Harbinger list out of Faithful Masses.  I'm able to kill a bunch of stuff, including his Paladins in some places trivially, but I had a critical failure on a Frenzy test, and really just don't have the volume of models and attacks I need to win.  I really am just not sure what I can do with this WWFF list.  Maybe for Minions I need to look at an alternative list to pair with my Blindwater list.  The announced theme force changes will be a really big help, I think, as I can afford to take a few units of infantry even in a WWFF list, which would offset some of my issues.  Be a good time to experiment when that day comes.
    Early game, right before I send my army into his... and eventually get overrun by it.
  • The Last Hundred Yards - Newly released from GMT Games, I went up and played against Bob in Spring Grove, trying to wrap our heads around the system in the first scenario.  It seems really interesting, but we're going to have to play another couple of times to really figure out what we are getting into.  Definitely different than other World War II games at this level.  Very very different.
  • MBL Pocket Pro Tour - A quick little game that was in my Millennium Blades Set Rotation expansion box, surprisingly.  Tried it solo, and it seems fun.  Super quick, super easy, and probably enjoyable enough to break out once or twice more.
  • No Safe Harbor: The Raid on Darwin - A mini-game from Against the Odds, depicting the Japanese air attack on Darwin.  Used a very similar system to the above Pocket Battle Games (although mercifully, used a dice-based combat system).  Unfortunately, still just doesn't quite work.  Played solo, and the Australians won in a landslide.
  • Star Trek CCG, 1st Edition - Rob and I are trying to get into this game, so he printed off the Romulan and Federation TNG decks, and we sat down and played.  I ended up winning (as the Romulans), as he ended up bouncing hard against Do You Smell Something Burning? which really slowed him down.  This gave me enough time to get what I needed into space and solve enough missions to end up winning me the game.
    My MVP!
  • Star Trek CCG, Second Edition - My brother was interested enough in this game after learning that he went and printed out a deck (a TNG Federation Battleship deck) against my constructed Cardassian capture deck.  I end up getting ahead of him, and get to 85 points after capturing two of his personnel, really hindering his ability to get stuff done, but he ends up getting what he needs on the table, solves the two missions he needs, and get the bonus points need to hit 100, beating me.
  • Targi - As I mentioned last month, this is part of the Kosmos two player game series that people always recommend for non-gaming spouses.  This one has some of the best ratings for games of that series, so my wife and I tried it.  She ended up winning on the first tiebreaker, but said she would need to play it another time or two to really decide if she likes it.  
  • Tsuro - One regular game of Tsuro against Christian, so he could see how the base game played.  Game came down to the final three spots on the board, and he ended up beating me.
  • Warhammer 40K: Conquest - Taught the game to my brother, using my Necron deck against a Dark Eldar deck.  He ended up winning when I misjudged some of the battles (really out of practice), but sadly, he didn't leave loving the game.
New Arrivals
  • A few modules for Star Fleet Battles - Modules C1, R3, K, and the Lyran Master Starship Book.  I'm playing as the Lyrans in an online campaign, and all of my Lyran SSDs were basically ruined, so I figured it was a good time to replace a bunch of things, and see what my ships were capable of.
  • KeyForge: Age of Ascension two player starter set.  I seem to be playing the game enough that I decided I probably needed some tokens.  Two more decks are nice, too, as now Frans can play against something else.
  • Doomtown Reloaded: Out for Blood Expansion.  The latest release from Pinnacle Entertainment Group adds a bunch of new cards for every outfit in the game.  Organized all of these, and am getting ready to start building some decks to throw down with Joey.
  • Six expansions for Ashes: Rise of the Phoenixborn.  With news that the game is 'complete', there wasn't a better time to finally catch up on my collection, which I have now done.
  • Six total Pocket Battle Games, many of which I played above.  I renewed my subscription to Against the Odds magazine, and they rewarded me for it.
  • Gloomhaven... so yeah, my wife got me a really nice birthday present!  Now I just need to find people to play it with me :)
Miniature Assembly/Painting
  • Once again, I didn't get anything done in this area, as my normal time I would work on minis was instead spent working on getting my basement cleaned and organized.  I'm chomping to get back to work though.
  • Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War - borrowed from my dad, who enjoyed it, this book covers the lead-up to the First World War, and the events of the first year of the war.  So far, it's been a good read, although I do have some small complaints.  I'll save those for when I'm done, hopefully in a few weeks (I am about halfway done).