Sunday, March 3, 2013

A Tournament of Games

On Saturday I had the opportunity to play in a tournament of games.  Now, you're probably asking what in the world is a tournament of games.  Well, it's what it sounds like.  You play a bunch of different games and get points based on where you place.  There were also time multipliers to help balance between long and short games.  Prizes were given out to hourly winners, as well as the overall point scores.  There were 8 gamers present, and due to timing of things, we split into two tables of 4 and never mixed (sadly).

The day started with somewhat ominous words "Who wants to play Munchkin?"  I figured it couldn't hurt as a warm-up game, and fortunately the game took less than an hour.  Three of us were at level 9, and the game ended quickly after people hit 9.  After Munchkin, we decided to play a quick game of Tsuro to get another game in before the hour was over.  One player had some unfortunate tiles, and had to leave the board on his 3rd play.  I may have expedited his departure, though not intentionally.  I got caught between allowing someone to dictate my move, or going to the edge and needing to draw a tile to live.  I chose the edge, and didn't get what I needed.  So after 1 hour I had tied for 2nd, and come in 3rd.  Not a great start, but not the worst either.

At this point we decided to go for something a little longer, so Ticket to Ride came out.  We decided to play on the US map, since two people had never played.  Unfortunately, the store copy was just the base game, so "hobbit" cards were the order of the hour.  I had some rough luck with destinations, as well as getting blocked a couple of times.  I managed to eek out 3rd, but I was 20+ points behind 2nd.  One of the new players ended up winning, which was nice to see.  Two players went out to grab food since it was around dinnertime, so I sat down to Zombie Fluxx with one player.  I drew a lot of zombies, far more than she did.  I was one turn away from winning when she played a goal and snatched the win.  So yes, if you're keeping track at home, I'm winless through 4 games.

We returned to our train theme with TransAmerica.  I figured I had a decent chance with this.  I've done well when I've played irl, and online.  Well, today, luck was not on my side.  I ended up being the first off the track, taking a lovely 4th place.  At this point, I was tired of losing, and 1 player needed to leave in about 30 minutes, so I suggested For Sale.  Now, For Sale is not a game I always win, nor do I always do well, but I thought I had a good chance.  Turns out my thoughts were right.  I managed to snag the 30 and 28 at auction, with the 29 being removed from the game.  The end score reflected that boost, as I had $10,000 more than 2nd place.  Lastly, the 3 of us decided to play Pizza Theory.  It made sense to both guys who had never played, and they both beat me.  It only took us two rounds, before the veggies had taken over the pizza.

Overall I played 7 games.  I won once (For Sale), came in 2nd twice (Zombie Fluxx, Munchkin), 3rd three times (Tsuro, Ticket to Ride, Pizza Theory) and 4th once (Trans America)  And all of that netted me last place, which was a victory in and of itself.  I did win a prize for that (Order Up), and I got a little game (Flapjacks and Sasquatches thanks to Mike's kindness).
Even though this was a tournament, and with it, a competition, it was still about having fun.  I got to teach games all day, and play with people who were eager to learn.  There were a lot of laughs, a lot of smiles, and I think everyone had a good time.

I was also excited to go down to Gateplay because I had my Wave 2 X-Wing ships on order.  I has Falcon.  I also picked up an expansion to Flash Point, and an expansion to King of Tokyo, meaning I own an expansion to a game I don't yet have in my possession.  (The order is coming on Monday from UPS, it got delayed due to the snowstorms in the midwest.)

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