April 12, 2006

Day Gaming Report for April 11, 2006

by Susan Rozmiarek

John Gravitt held day gaming at his house today and I was finally able to go again. He usually has a hard time finding people free on a week day to attend, but Tim happened to have the day off and with Gina, John’s wife, we had the perfect number of players. Sorry, no pictures. Ed is the one who always remembers the camera and he was at work, probably happily playing Tichu with his lunchtime group.


I have lost count of how many times I’ve taught this game to new players. Not surprisingly, just about every one of those people has been impressed with the game. I consider this the very best game of 2005, even over the wildly popular Caylus. This game is so finely balanced and competitive that playing it is always an enjoyable experience. “Mean” games with lots of direct conflict are normally not my favorites, but for some reason I find the viciousness in Elasund to be great fun.

The game started off with everyone playing “nice” but things eventually turned ugly as people realized that one had to get nasty to win. In honor of the upcoming Easter holiday, I decided to pursue what I call the Church Strategy. I tried to get out buildings at the start which produce money to get a steady stream of income so that I could work on building the church. Victory points on church tiles are safe from ever getting removed but the tradeoff is that they are expensive to build. It mostly worked as I managed to build four church tiles during the game. Unfortunately, I did have to build one over one of my smaller cash buildings which slowed down my money stream a bit. I was able to get one victory point on the wall as did John, but Tim and Gina gobbled up the remaining spaces, each getting out two victory point cubes. Meanwhile, John went after the windmill track, building over one of my buildings and costing me my windmill points. Tim threatened one of my buildings with his permits, interrupting my church building to focus on defense. I was able to turn things around and build over his building instead, getting out one of the large buildings. It came down to a very close race between Gina and me, but I was able to build one of the tiny buildings for the win. Great game!

We also played a game of Exxtra and a hand of Frank’s Zoo before I had to leave. I need to get out Frank’s Zoo and play it with my kids. It’s been ages since I’ve played it myself and this reminded what a fun little climbing game it is. Of course, the cute art boosts my opinion a notch as well.

Posted by Susan Rozmiarek at April 12, 2006 9:58 AM

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