Friday, June 17, 2005

It's been a good week for gaming. I met up with Les on Monday in the Fox to play Blue Moon. I've finally bought my own copy of this excellent game, plus a few extra decks such as the Terrah and those guys with the giant caterpillars (can't remember the name just now). Pleased to be able to report a 2:1 win. Then yesterday it was a game session at Trevor's place, with just 3 of us plus Trevor's boy Oliver, who joined us for the first game - Manhattan. I quite liked this - but very abstract, and needed to go....ahem....a little faster than we actually played it. Still, it's fun to screw over an opponent by stealing his tower at the crucial moment. Then it was on to Medici - I usually struggle with auction type games. I wonder if my wargamer's mind tends to think in aggressive/defensive categories when I'm gaming, which are not much use in an auction. All that matters here is accurately estimating the value of what is for sale. I went for commodities rather than points, which did indeed give me a late surge, but not enough - even so I was pleased to come in second. (I'm pretty poor at other auction games too - witness Ra, Modern Art, Amun Re etc.) We finished with Ave Caesar, a quick fun family game of chariot racing but without (disappointingly) the whips, wheel-knives and hamstringings that I remember from the films....

4 comments:

Chris Farrell said...

Funny, I think of Medici as being one of the more offensive auction games available. While games like Amun-Re and Ra do tend to be just about figuring out what a lot is worth to you, Medici has a much larger component of denying goods to your opponents at a reasonable price. You have to routinely overbid on commodities you don't want (or even might have negative value to you) in order to block another player from getting them too cheaply.

I guess that still makes it basically just an evaluation game. But most bidding games you don't have to worry too much about what things are worth to other players, you just don't want to overbid yourself. In Medici this is a much bigger deal.

I should say, I love Modern Art and Ra and Amun-Re, but don't care that much for Medici :)

Peter said...

I suppose you're right Chris. But I feel like I'm so bad at evaluation games that I'm not even in a position to realize that I am underbidding or overbidding, so cannot sensibly make a decision about whether it's worthwhile to do that in order to block an opponent.
Maybe I'm not as bad at this as I think however - after all, I've done alright on the UK housing market (so far).

Chris Farrell said...

My understanding is that it hasn't exactly taken a genius to do well in the UK housing market of late :) It's like picking tech stocks during the DotCom bubble. They key is not getting in but getting out :) (For us, getting out of the tech bubble was about 1998, so you certainly shouldn't be asking me for advice. We thought anyone who bought Google at the IPO price was insane, and as of today it's over doubled).

William said...

I don't really like a lot of auction games, many rely too much on remebering what else everyone did not so long ago. Having said that I have played For Sale recently and that was really good.