Thursday, June 08, 2006

House of 10,000 Bad German Accents

What is it about "Power Grid" that makes our gaming group adopt bad Teutonic accents and make off-colour jokes about Cuxhaven and Wilhelmshaven? How is it that a friendly gaming night degenerates into a morass of bad puns and similar inanity?

Not since the classic "I have wood for sheep" phrase was uttered while playing Settlers of Catan has a game engendered such low humour.

Well, it's a great game, despite all the silliness. As this was Mr. H's first go at this particular gem, we started the evening with the standard introductory game of Step 1 only and a 7 city goal. Mr. H caught on quickly, but not quickly enough to stop Kozure from snagging the lead. Shemp might have come closer to the front runners save for a miscalculation by one Electro which cost him a connection.

Our second, full game was pretty tight. We decided to leave out the two southernmost regions to avoid creating the narrow playing areas we've had in the past. This allowed for fairly wide-open play and a consequently closer game - no one player was locked out of the standings by the usual "Great Wall of China" strategy (although Shemp did make a great try at it).

Mr. H made a few excellent acquisitions of green power plants and pulled off the win with something like 15 Electros in reserve. Hapi came in second with around 8 or 9, and Shemp came up with third, managing to power 17 but only having 1 Electro left.

What about yours truly? Well, a boneheaded power plant overpurchase in step 1 left me with insufficient electros to buy the resources to power it, leaving four cities in the dark, and me about thirty electros behind everyone else for the rest of the game. Despite playing catch up and almost getting there, I only managed to connect 16 cities before the curtain came down.

This game was the closest yet - most of the games we've played previous to this one had one or two clear leaders with a abundance of electros left over, and at least one (and sometimes two) other players behind by three or four connections.

This continues to be one of my favourite games. Tight game play, difficult decisions over a limited set of options, but relatively little AP (analysis paralysis), combined with a good theme and relatively clear ruleset (depsite the three or four rules around timing which tend to be niggly) make this one a winner.

We didn't get around to the proposed second game, "Way out West", due to a late start (my fault), but I'm looking forward to trying out Martin Wallace's cowboy epic next week or sometime soon.


Ja, pardner.

No comments:

Post a Comment