LPO Day 3: Carry on, carry on…

Wednesday proved not dissimilar to Tues, although it started off with a short roadtrip to McDonalds to see if their breakfast menu was anything like the UK one – it isn’t… and you lot at the back commenting on my food choices can shush your noise! McD’s wasn’t even open ’til 10am, so we checked out the local superstore for a wee bit while we waited for the doors to open…

We got back super-sharpish after that, and it was very nice to start off with several games of Aliens Ate My Planet! with a young chap who was evidently very familiar with Dominion, and thus at some points was teaching me how efficient the engine of my game was – it was almost revelatory to see someone else take my design and show me how smart it allowed him to be with his various combo actions. A splendidly satisfying morning, to be sure!

High Society was the next one on the list, and although I’m not a huge fan of Knizia a lot of the time, I do like this new ‘Art Nouveau’ fancy version. And I won, which is always nice… 😉

I got the opportunity to teach and introduce Century: Spice Road and Rise of Tribes to various people during the afternoon and early evening, and am pleased to say both games seemed to go down well…

We had foolishly entered the Codenames competition at the start of the week, but our 1st Round game proved a bit of a breeze, so we’ll say no more about that for now: we got through to the 2nd Round quite comfortably!

The evening was finished off with a gorgeous-looking game called Imaginarium back at the chalet… I did terribly, but ’twas nonetheless quite the experience! The game is an engine-builder about repairing antiquated and bizarre looking machines to try and produce the resources req’d to fix things that in turn can help you produce victory points… And did I mention it’s rather pretty?  I’m a terrible photographer, but hopefully you can see how totally OTT these player meeples are…

We went to bed shortly thereafter (about 2.30am), but I was sharing one of the rooms with a fellow member of what I like to term my ‘classic’ gaming group (as opposed to my ‘regular’ group), and Paul Willcox and I accidentally got talking about classic role-playing games and campaigns… Oops – we finally piped down and turned the lights out at 4.57am precisely… OMG!

LPO Day 2: At last, some gaming…

Yesterday proved a better day gaming-wise, and the list was quite decent…

I started the day with a couple of games of FlickFleet from Eurydice Games, a rather fun dexterity shoot ’em up that’s due on Kickstarter soon-ish…

This was swiftly followed by a playtest of Tsuxnet Strikes Back (an Agents in Time ‘sequel’) which proved illuminating and of course, rather fun for all concerned – It looks cool on the table, too!

Bunny Kingdom was up next, and although I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I romped to victory in this one, the important thing was that the players I taught it to really enjoyed it!

We were joined by a few more players and split into groups, but our group was fortunate enough to then play Euphoria (“Build a Better Dystopia!”) which is a classic worker-placement Stonemaier game with the emphasis on squeezing your workers to the bone without them noticing you doing so… No doubt many readers who work in bigger companies probably know how that feels! ‘Twas a good game, though, and it came down to the wire with three of us all in the running for the win.

Lighter games followed, starting with a co- operative survival game called The Lost Expedition. This is a fun but tough jungle survival game, but of special interest to me because the artist is Garen Ewing, a very old friend from many years ago, back in the days when I edited fanzines, ran postal games and the like, etc. He was one of my best artists!

Still, we did survive the jungle trek, and ’twas the lovely Ynes that finally scraped us through the jungle in one piece…

Next in line was the somewhat silly and childish Crossing — a game in which players are trying to steal and squirrel away sets of gems from the centre of the table and each other!

This was followed by Fuse which was a rather frantic timer-based game in which you play a bunch of bungling bomb disposal ‘experts’ tasked with trying to diffuse a stack of cards which are dice-based constructions involving physically matching dice to the required pattern indicated on the cards – it’s fun, chaotic, a bit crazy, and we played it on a harder mode, and lost several times! Great fun, though, and that’s the important bit!

Trekking back to the chalet at near midnight, I thought we might end up playing something else, but I was whacked by then, as were some of the others, so it was evidently time to turn in…

LPO Day 1: A rocky start…

Well, after failing at Leaving Earth this morning (see Leaving Earth from an Airport…), I did at least manage to land safely in Nantes, France, Earth — and given it was a cheap flight, I do believe there were only four bags on the plane, three of which belonged to us and were full of games for the forthcoming week.

Organising the 7-seater car we’d hired was also ‘fun’ if you’re one of those masochistic types who finds fitting a big round peg into a tiny square hole exhilarating… And being ‘slight of frame’ shall we say (compared to the rest), not only did I get the short straw and have a special ‘seat’ next to half a dozen cargo bags and suitcases, but I envisaged my getting out again to be akin to playing the part of a bean in Baked Bean Jenga…

The trip to LPO was relatively short, but a shopping jaunt to a French supermarket was the first point of order… And some food.

Gaming itself didn’t start until 8pm, and I kicked off my evening with a game of Rise of Tribes… which I lost convincingly… nowt new there, then!

This was followed by an effort to learn Uwe Rosenberg’s 2-player Caverna implementation: Cave vs Cave which ended badly… oops!

Finally, a quick game of Tantrix finished the evening off relatively early (11pm-ish)… Ready to go again tomorrow… at some point…

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