Thursday, February 16, 2006

Put down that cupcake and RACE! (Through the Desert x2, Formula De, RoboRally)

This week was all about racing:

We burned rubber on Formula De's SPA track.
We braved the homicidal factory in RoboRally's "Bloodbath Chess" course.
We, ummm, had our camels cross the sands of Sahara REALLY FAST (?) in Through the Desert.

Oh, and we ate my wife's yummy Valentine's Day cupcakes.

It all started with a quick game of TtD for three. Shemp let us know ahead of time that he hadn't been sleeping well for a few days. This, combined with the fact that his colourblindness made it nearly impossible for him to follow what what going on on the board led him to apologize in advance for his weak playing. I did win, but he managed 2nd place. Poor Kozure...

I think this one is sneaking into my top 10... simple rules, scales well to any number of players and never takes much more than 30 minutes. (Shame about the pastel camels, though). We later closed the night with another round with 4 players. Kozure used an interesting initial placement strategy where he grouped 3 camels in one corner. This gave him an easy way to block other players from cutting him off as he went for a very large land grab. He made up for his earlier defeat!

Formula De was the first "Main Course". I wanted to try the SPA course with the group... it has the reputation of being the best of the tracks. I have to say I quite enjoyed it! Quite often the decision regarding which gear to be in on any given turn was quite tough. The leader changed frequently throughout the game and the course was often choked at the corners. I started at the Pole Position (and consequently in last place with my 2nd car). I was very hard on my lead car and blew most of my tires and brakes by the middle of the course. I did have the lead, but my conservative play after that allowed both Shemp and Kozure to pass me. In the end, Kozure crossed the finish line first and 5th, with Shemp 2nd and 3rd. I manages 4th and 6th with Luch limping in 7th (he lost a car in the chicane).

In Roborally, the "Bloodbath Chess" map proved to be quite interactive and lively. I seem to have a habit of totally screwing up my first move and this game was no different. I died right away because I didn't notice a wall in my path. I was behind for the entire game, but I accumulated quite an interesting array of special abilities along the way (dual CPU, extra memory, brakes and rear firing lasers). They weren't enough... I came in third (and the only reason I wasn't fourth was that Luch lost his third life token by flying into a pit near the 4th flag).

Until next time, may none or your registers be programmed randomly

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