Sunday, 27 May 2007

Saturday gaming

Jay, Jordan and Mark came over yesterday and we played a few games. Jay arrived early in the day and we played some games of Battle Lore, we played the third and fourth scenarios. Jay won the first match 10-8 on the strength of his crushing of me 6-2 in the first game. The second round was much bloodier and much closer. We tied 11-11 with the winning kill being done the round before the opponent could. There was a lot of heavy fighting going on all over the board.

Jordan and Mark showed up at 7:30 and Jay left then, once again depriving Mark of his chance to play Azteca, instead we played Winds of Plunder, a pirate game from GMT Games. The game had a little more going on then either Jordan or I expected and Mark won in a game that was closer then I expected. The cards add a bit of a take that to the game and I like the effect of treasure maps.

We stood around and talked while trying to figure out the next game and we decided on Havoc: The Hundred Years War, a card game that uses poker hands to determine the winner of rounds of combat. It is a neat game, too bad the only way it seems to be available is from Funagain Games, and they don’t have any in stock. I won it by about 4 points.

Mark had only ever played one Friedeman Friese game so we taught him Fearsome Floors, which was won by absolutely no one as Jordan sacrificed two of my tokens and two of Mark’s and two of his to ensure the monster was fed well. I would guess I played games for about 8 hours yesterday, and had a really good time.
We gathered together, 13 of us, dedicated to one task and one task only; to play games!

As people slowly trickled in we had several games going at once, but first we played three quick games of Werewolf, and the werewolves won two of them.

We broke into two groups and had Pirate’s Cove and Grand Prix: Detroit & Cleveland going on at the same time. Will proved to be the rogue of the pirate group winning over 3 others while Brenda dominated in GP winning by 100,000+.

While we were playing the last of the attendees arrived and the four of them played Frank’s Zoo, with a three way tied score of 19. Steve won on the tiebreaker. He and two others then left (one game, one win, no exceptions?).

All three groups finished up around the same time so we played a couple more games of Werewolf to teach it to Robert, while Jay and Cory played a little Battle Lore. The werewolves won once and the villagers won once. Jay won the Battle Lore game 8-6.

Since I am a little slow to update, I forgot when we played For Sale, all I know is that I did not win (Jay and Brenda did) and we finished the night with Attribut. Tim won it by 1 in a close game with 3 points between 1st and 3rd..

The next game night will be June 16th, I hope to see all of you there

Sunday, 13 May 2007

I am pondering running a Power Grid Day

Is there any interest? I have one copy of the game, and would need a second one if we want to support more then 6 players.

Does anyone have any interest in this?

You can read more about Power Grid here.

I also have my copy of Winds of Plunder, a pirate game for 3-5 players. Brenda and I are going to try it before boardgame night Saturday.

Thursday, 10 May 2007

My buddy, Kenny B

BERGWALL _ Kenneth Bruce 1959 - 2007 It is with great sorrow that we announce the sudden and unexpected passing of Ken Bergwall in Calgary on May 7, 2007 at the age of 47 years. Ken leaves to mourn, his best friend and wife Brenda Berezuk; his mother Tena Bergwall of Brandon, Manitoba; his brother Deryl (Nuala) their family Shannon and Jamie of Airdrie, his brother Duane (Maidelen), their family Melani and Sheyla of Edmonton. Also mourning his loss are Brenda's family, Anne Berezuk, Carol Berezuk, David and Judy Berezuk, Tim and Tracey Berezuk, niece and nephews Katie and Kyle McEwen, Jeremy and Johnathan Berezuk all of Calgary. Ken is also survived by his aunts, Gwen, Ruth and Val, and cousins Donna, Laura, Joey, Bruce, Cheryl, Brett and Heather. Ken was predeceased by his father Don Bergwall and his grandparents, Hutton and Bergwall. Ken was born on July 14, 1959 in Killarney, Manitoba. He graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Science degree in Geological Engineering. The friendships that formed at the U of M endure today, as most of the class moved west after graduation. Ken's relationship with his U of M friends meant a lot to him especially the weekly lunches at the Unicorn Pub. After graduation Ken moved to Elkford, B.C. to work for Fording Coal. During his eight years in Elkford, Ken once again developed many strong and enduring friendships as part of the "Elkford Gang" and the "Suffer Club". In 1989 Ken moved to Calgary, married Brenda and continued his career as a mining engineer. His work took him to some exotic and not so exotic mine sites in Thailand, Borneo, Alabama, Kapuskasing and Madagascar. At the time of his death, Ken was working for CNRL on the Horizon Project in Fort McMurray. Brenda would like to thank the paramedics and other emergency response staff and the cardiology physicians and staff at the Foothills Medical Centre for doing all they could for Ken. A celebration of Ken's life will be held in the Heritage Room of the Blackfoot Inn, 5940 Blackfoot Trail S.E., Calgary on Friday, May 11, 2007 at 11:00 a.m. Please bring your stories and memories to share. If friends so desire, donations may be made to the Heart & Stroke Foundation of Alberta, NWT & Nunavut, 200, 119 - 14 Street N.W., Calgary, AB T2N 1Z6, for education and research or to a charity of your choice. You are invited to leave a personal message of condolence at the family's on-line Memorial Register at:

Ken was one of those guys that was always a pleasure to game with, or against, his sense of humour was always in evidence, in winning or in losing. Listening to him kvetch as he rolled ones again attacking in TI, or doing a coup in Twilight Struggle were always a pleasure.

I will always have fond memories of sitting with Ken, Jay and Cory, smoking cigars, drinking Scotch and just talking.

I have the deepest sympathy for Brenda, who lost her husband, but the people I feel sorriest for are those that never got to meet him.

Ken was truly one of a kind and I am going to miss him.

My day at MayDay

I arrived in Edmonton Friday night, driving through a snowstorm. At one point I called Brenda and told her that it was no longer raining, it was now snowing! When I did finally arrive in Edmonton, I discovered there must have either been a convention or no one willing to drive in Edmonton as many of the hotels were full. I ended up driving around for about an hour before finding a room at the Rest Skeezy Arms, the first room they put me in was never cleaned…

Since this is a gaming website I better put something about games into this article. I arrived at MayDay fresh from a nights sleep and immediately ran into people I only see once a year, we talked as Tim set up the game of Savage Worlds, a miniatures game with a slight taste of RPG. Tim’s game was a continuation of the game he runs in Saskatoon. I once again played Marcus Andre and the valiant crew of the Persephone, whom I first played in the Gwong Island Rescue.

The game started with us creeping up on the village and I got unlucky and one of my crew tripped over a root in the desert, alerting the guards. There was a small firefight with Force Six wiping most of them out. The crew and Marcus focused primarily on trying to get into the village to find the work the Nazis were doing and to “liberate” a few scientists. In our haste to work our way around the buildings we dropped some of our ammo and the crew was all on “last shots” level of ammo.

Marcus did show off his Colt .45 sharpshooter skills again, nailing Ilsa with it from across the village and shooting a scientist in the head that was in a building.

The crew discovered the robot man and the explosives to blow him up at about the same time, with one half running into the robot and the other into a storage room with the lone German speaker on the ship.

We ran out of time then so we stopped the game after the first explosion went off, but I think that we could have defeated the robot, but it would take some deaths.

My second game was the one I ran, Commands and Colors: Ancients. I never played any of the games but with the help of Brent Lloyd )who did play) we taught it to 3 other players, all of whom expressed an interest in both playing it again and purchasing it. I won’t recount there names, as I forget them, but two of them were from Fort St John, BC. In the time we had allotted there were 5 total games played.

I ran one scenario from the Greek and Eastern Kingdoms Expansion and one from the bonus pack from the P500 list.

About 30 minutes before the Vimy Ridge scenario that Tim ran was about to start, Brent pulled out a copy of Axis and Allies Naval Miniatures which he taught to Lee, an ancients and ASL buff. I watched them setup for a few moments before I went to Tim’s game. Tim’s game was a modified version of Contemptible Little Armies or as I call it CLA. Tim has already written up an excellent coverage of the game here so I will spend a few minutes elaborating on them from my PoV.

I had the 38th and the 78th as well as the weight of being Divisional Commander… One thing that I was considering, especially since this was a WWI scenario, was to send the Nova Scotians to up the same place that the 87th and the 75th, after all, this was WWI and bad decisions were made all the time.

The march for the 38th was relatively easy, I lost two men in hand to hand combat but always killed them with the second attacker. The reached their objective and since the 72nd took out the pillbox that could have really damaged my units, it was pretty much a cakewalk for the 38th.

The 78th had a harder row to hoe; they were in front of the pillbox when both the barrage ended and both the 75th and the 87th were done. All of their losses came at the guns of the pillbox sitting in the middle of the board. The 78th were at half strength and had a morale marker against them when the last German on their half of the board was killed (by them, with bayonets).

I was also racing the Divisional Commander up the hill to try and remove some of the morale markers, unfortunately he was an officer and a gentleman, and therefore strolled.

All in all it was a good game day and I will be back again next year, I am just not sure whether I will run anything, or will just play.

Monday, 7 May 2007

Waiting on Tim

I will be updating the way MayDay went for me when Tim finally writes his AAR.

Sunday, 6 May 2007

Settlers of Catan players

I know this is short notice, but I rarely pay attention to Settlers of Catan. The Western Canadian Championship is in 2 weeks in Edmonton. The winner gets a trip to Germany to play in the World Championships in Essen.

I am guessing the Essen tournament will be during the Essen Game fair, the fall event in which many new boardgames are released.

Saturday, 5 May 2007

Richard Borg on the Commands & Colors System

I just got back from Mayday in Edmonton and I am a little tired so I will just leave you this comment from Richard Borg, designer of the Commands & Colors System

In regard to Battle Cry and Hasbro… By design Battle Cry is the simplest game in the Commands & Colors system. Hasbro wanted to target Battle Cry to mass-market buyers as well as us gamers. So the rules were written to create a game that is fun to play, moves along at lighting speed and except for the leader rules is about as basic as it could be.

About the same time as the American Civil War game rules were being written, other historical and fantasy versions were all at various stages of completion. We had played Fantasy, Medieval, Mexican American War, Crimean War, World War II, Colonial, Future, and actually had the Napoleonic rules and American Revolution rules completed prior to Battle Cry hitting the stores. It really helps to have fellow gamers with a deep interest and knowledge of history and the miniatures to play around with…

What was so interesting about developing all of these periods around the same time, from the designer's standpoint at least, is that we could focus on each period, making sure we use the best rules and Command card ideas, so that each would play different and have the proper historical feel. Sure some of the rules or Command card concepts from one period could be applied to another period, it will work, I know we have tried… but the questions I always had to ask were: where does this concept work best, or where does it help most to enhance the historical feel?

It has been suggested that… a more accurate assumption would be that Mr. Borg just got better as he designed more games… actually I hope I am becoming better at my trade, but if the truth be known, most of the differences, or the so called improvements, for each game in the Commands & Colors line, are intentionally as we tried to take you from simple to more complex…

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Some minor changes

Over to the right you will notice two new links, The games we play and a google calendar.

The games we play is a spreadsheet listing by month and year all the games that have been played since I started running games night. You can see that Ticket to Ride gets played every year, and no game has been played more the 6 times in one year. This year does have a small anomaly as we played Werewolf 5 times last week. It is a short (20-30 minute) party game that seems to loosen the group up.

The google calendar simply lists game nights or other gaming events that you may be interested in going to.