Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I thought the Bull was Barley (Zombie Fluxx, Chinatown x2, Pit)

We had a full house this week, with Shemp, Bharmer, Kozure, Luch and I in attendance.

Zombie Fluxx

While waiting for Kozure and Shemp, we opened with a quick round of Zombie Fluxx. The highlight, for me, was playing the zombie jamboree (which randomly redistributes all the keepers and creepers on the table) and getting exactly the combination I needed to satisfy the goal card I had in my hand... coffee, sandwiches and no zombies. Unfortunately, Luch took my coffee before I had the chance to play the goal, and won the game by using it to satisfy his own goal. Oh well, such is Fluxx.

I'm still not sure how I feel about the game, but I do kind of enjoy the goofy randomness of it all. The zombies don't seem to have the presence that they should in the game, however. In the two games I've played so far, I'm not sure that anyone has taken the time to use a weapon to shoot one, for example.

Unfortunately, I have the distinct feeling that for other members of the group, the highlight is when it ends...


We played two sessions of Chinatown, the first according to the standard rules and the second with a variant that forced players to have a street facing property in order to earn money on their business. I won the first game and Bharmer won the second (where, sadly, I came in dead last). There was some discussion about a potential rich get richer problem, which precludes a player who doesn't get off the ground early from being competitive, or that the luck of the draw somehow determines the winner... I'm not sure I agree. Obviously, landing a lucrative set early in the game is huge due to the number of times a player profits from it, but players shouldn't let that happen unless it gives them a similarly lucrative deal back. I think the secret to winning is to ensure that you are one half of the majority of profitable deals that are played throughout the game, not necessarily looking to land a few killer deals at the expense of everyone else. Supporting this theory is that Shemp has placed first or second in every game we've played, so luck of the draw doesn't seem to be the determining factor. It is true, however, that if you are out of the game by the mid-point there is little you can due to come back into contention. As the rounds wear on, the potential profits shrink (which runs counter to many game designs where potential points increase as the rounds go on). Maybe we could implement a reverse sliding scale for deals which would make later deals more profitable, just to see if this situation is improved. I'd also like to try to add the variant I spoke of last time, which was to add a randomizing element like the "roving parade" which would alter the value of the properties based on the distance to the parade.

Looks like it's more of an 1 1/2 hour game than 1 hour, which is fine. I'm not sure how much the street facing variant added the the game. Sure, it altered the value of some of the properties (which was interesting), but it made some practically worthless due to being buried deep at the back (which was not interesting if you drew them).


We closed with a game of PIT. We played that having a majority of a particular good gave you half points, just to make sure that the scores actually headed to a conclusion (last game, the negative points due to the Bull and Bear were making the game last forever). I actually hit the bell once, and with a Bull corner at that. Unfortunately, on another hand I discovered that my incomplete hand of barley actually contained the Bull (I cold only see the "B", and, you know, I was rushing so I didn't check). I should have traded it away, but I didn't know I had it, so...

I think Shemp won the game. Fun as always.

No comments:

Post a Comment