Well, I try to get 4 games in at Game Night every week, but my friends started having fun wrong at the end of game 3, and rather than wait for that game to end, I headed home, since it was fairly late. I got to play Carcassonne: South Seas, Tales of the Arabian Nights, and King of Tokyo (with King of Tokyo: Halloween and King of Tokyo Promo Cards). I think it’s cool that it was such an eclectic mix.
It was my first time playing Carcassonne South Seas (Game Night: Coconut Bra Optional), which was the penultimate Carcassonne to remain untouched by my delicate hands. (New World now stands alone, and I think I need to remedy that soon, if only for the sake of completion.) We played with the maximum 5 players, which I think was not ideal, because it made it very difficult to complete features, so it seemed like there was a little more straight luck involved in being able to score.
For those unfamiliar with the unique scoring mechanic, you get resources (fish, shells, bananas) when you score features, and then you use those resources to buy ships, which cost different numbers and combinations of resources and are worth different numbers of points for the final score. The game ends when you either run out of board tiles or out of scoring ships. We didn’t even get through half of the scoring ships. The guy who won only managed to buy 3 of them. I had 2. I would have had 3, and the game, but one of my Markets (equivalent to Monasteries) failed to score because I had one of those horrible experiences where the guy in front of you gets the exact tile you’ve been waiting for, and there goes your last chance to score it. (Completing a Market lets to you choose a ship automatically, regardless of how much it costs.)
Waiting in the wings as I finished South Seas was my buddy Pete, with whom I had made a pact last week to play Tales of the Arabian Nights this time. This game is divine. This was a new one to me, as well, and I am crazy about this game. I found the mashed-up mechanics of choose-your-own-adventure and role-playing to be elegantly designed, and it was just plain fun. I admit that I was bitterly disappointed when I very suddenly won by a lot because I completed my quest, which put me over the number of Story points needed to win. I wanted to keep playing. In the future, I think I would raise the number needed, to make for a longer game.
I played as Sheherazade, and started with the skills Scholarship, Stealth & Stealing, and Luck. I think these were fitting with the character of legend, but I didn’t stick with her, really. I played her a little more… roguishly. (Well, she robbed a few people, so maybe more than a little. That Impudent Hag I robbed turned out to have robbed the Sultan, though, and that was dead lucrative when I turned her in, with the goods, and got rewarded with Wealth and the Wisdom skill.) I was insanely lucky in this game. I sailed through, while the others got Lost, and Wounded, and Lovesick, and Pursued, and all sorts of nasty conditions they had to stop and deal with. That’s all part of rollick, though!
I really enjoy the sort of voluntary role-playing aspect of the game. Sure, if people don’t want to, or don’t feel comfortable doing it, they can just read the text out, and announce their responses, and it still works. But if you choose to, you can do some role-playing, and add some theatrics to your readings and decisions. I started doing a little of that, and the others followed suit. I think it added to the game. I had a fantastic time, and immediately came home and put it on my trade list. I can’t wait to play it again!
Finally, we switched gears entirely again, and played King of Tokyo. We used the Halloween expansion and the promo cards. The latter were exciting, because I’d never seen them, and now I have an itch to get my hands on them. I got to play Boogie Woogie, who is my favorite, and it was the best King of Tokyo game I’ve ever played. (Full session report: Don’t Bother Checking Under Your Bed – Boogie Woogie Isn’t Hiding!) There was excitement, there was laughter, there were near-tears (not even mine), there was a guy suddenly bursting into a German accent because I hit him for so much damage… And then there was the end.
Let me set this up. I had Monster Sidekick (one of those luscious promo cards), who would bring me back to full health, but with no victory points, if someone had killed me. I also had Jets, which let me yield the city without taking damage, and the Princess costume, which gave me a victory point at the beginning of every turn. There were two of us left in the game, and I was in the city with 2 health and 19 victory points. With two rolls, Pete rolled this:
Six claws, AND HE COULDN’T SCRATCH ME. I just strolled out of the city. I yielded, his turn ended, mine began, and, oh, look at that, my pretty little Princess costume gave me a victory point, so now I’m at 20! Game Over! It was the best game of KoT I’ve played, and by far the most dramatic ending.
After that, my buddies were headed off to play some mad 12-player game of something they described as the X-Men version of Resistance. That didn’t sound like my can of soup just then, and I didn’t want to wait for the other group, which was playing Lords of Waterdeep, to finish, so I wandered home, waited for my husband to finish working (he works second shift, from home), and got him to play Lost Cities with me to round out the night.
Adventures were had in three settings (not counting Lost Cities), and I was victorious in two of them. It was a good night. And I needed it.