Weekend Blog September 4-5, 2021: Many Games

Cover this weekend, I did manage to start Saturday late in the morning. Actually sleeping to 9ish! I was tired, and it was hard to get started. I managed breakfast and to look at everything not done and feel guiltless; I am tired.

Evan texted me, and I finally agreed to meet him, not for lunch, as I had antipasto leftover from the GrubHun for breakfast/lunch. There is nothing like meats, picked, good cheese, and cheese garlic bread (reheated in the oven, not the microwave) for a breakfast that reminds me of Europe and Turkey.

And there is not enough coffee left, so I heavest a bit of Turkish coffee. I have to beat on the coffee maker to get the brew done. It is not terrible.

I finished my “Istanbul” micro-story of 500 words for the H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival. I am nervous that I left a typo in the final draft I sent in. It took me a few hours to clean up the text on Friday and this Saturday morning. With only 500 words, you have to be brief and bright and colorful and detailed (but not too detailed); in other words, it is impossible. Nevertheless, I hope they will accept it.

I put in an order for Safe to deliver on Sunday night. It includes coffee, Duncan Donuts brand.

Evan gets here as I finish dressing. Then, we head for The 649 with two games. We will try the board game Grand Hotel Austria again after the Kickstarter updates cames this week. As a backup, we also agree on Wingspan, one of the great new games.

We also ordered some nice drinks. I had some Belgium-styled beer I thought was wonderful. Grand Hotel Austria still seemed mechanical and less about building an engine or resource management, and if you get behind on resources, the crawl back is harsh. But, again, it is fun to feed cake and coffee to the guest and run your own hotel. But, it seemed forced again. I will try it again with more players and see if that fixes the issues we had.

Wingspan has you play as a keeper of a bird sanctuary where you picked your birds with the game’s framework. Naturally, the best and happiest sanctuary wins.

Wingspan had me outpace Evan by quite a lot of points at the end. He managed to build a decent collection of birds, but he did not get any that collected resources or tucked cards. I was doing that with the first few birds, and that scored me very high. My only complaint with Wingspan is that sometimes the birds just don’t show, and you can’t win. It is still a pleasurable game once you get the rules down and plays fast.

We then picked up Susie and went to the Mexican place across from The 649. Susie liked her food, and we had some nice drinks. I had soup and a taco.

I did change Susie’s bandage. I made a new one to cover the stitches and we were all ready to go. I removed it on Sunday and treated it a bit. It looks fine. Susie has just a little pain. No issues.

We drove Air Volvo to the movies from there. We saw the movie Shang-Chi. This is the new Marvel movie based on yet-another-young-sexy-comic-book hero story. I did not like the last set of Marvel movies–the large scale of battles did not interest me much–but the introduction movies are often good. This movie, another introduction movie, is great and fun. It reminds me of Captain Marvel and Doctor Strange movies. The right mix of crazy and over-the-top superpowers. I will not put any spoilers here; it is just good.

Susie loved the movie, but as with most Marvel movies, she was not quite sure what is going on. Susie is not a comic book gal and magic that is not Harry Potter is hard for her to follow. She truly enjoyed the movie and was holding my hand through a scary bit.

That finished Saturday.

Sunday started with me up at 6:30 with my alarm and doing laundry and dishes. I have a board game with Casey and Richard. It is Through the Ages again. Casey wanted another shot at the game, and I am also willing. I make instant coffee for Susie and set that out with her breakfast as she is still sleeping when I leave a bit late for Richard’s house in Portland.

I felt better this time when I was chasing Richard’s score at the end. I could not catch him, but my score was respectable. I missed acquiring a mining resource and did not build enough science, but I still did well. Next time. Casey had the same problems I had in the last game. I think it takes three plays before you get the feel of the game and get the balance of options (cards) and resources. I suspect Casey will be hard to stop next time.

We then tried the brand new Ankh that I got last week from Kickstarter. My first three-person play. I had to explain the game and the rules. Some of the rules of combat just have to be experienced. We went pretty slow at first, and then it got faster and faster. We used the Old Kingdom Scenario for three players. I was at first doing OK playing the Egyptian Amun. Richard was playing Isis. And Ra, played by Casey, was ahead.

We kept learning and finding our way in the new game. It is a territory management game with some Euro engines in the Ankh powers. This game is in-your-face knockdown styled. It has a strange camel process to split the board into more areas.

Lastly, Amun, because I was in the last place, was merged with Richard’s Isis (in second place). I now played as a second-class helper to Isis. Casey now fighting a recombined powered-up Isis with full Amun superpowers.

Just as we reached the hard stop time of 4PM, Isis-Amun reached the game-ending level of devotion. We are all surprised by the game and how different it is from other games by the same designer. We will need to play again. Next time I am sure I will be the new lead god of Egypt.

We quickly tried to get Ankh back into its box, but the cards did not quite fit. I will have to work something out. I drove Casey home and then took Air Volvo back home. I made tacos for dinner.

Safeway delivered the groceries. Goodness, that was a lot of bags. Did I really used to spend hours buying, put them in the car, and then carry them in all that stuff? Or for $4, I can have them delivered. Hmmm.

Well, I have hit the time limit for writing this. I timebox it now to stop it from being losing its fun. I hope you enjoy today’s blog.

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