Saturday, July 14, 2012

Gaming with Grandma - 129

Another Saturday morning gaming session with my mother Sue (AKA Grandma), wife Debbie and two daughters, Maddie (11) and Georgia (6.5).

The game we played today was Carcassonne: Hunters and Gatherers. I'm trying to introduce the girls to more grown up games and this game is recommended for 8 years and up.  As this was the first game for Maddie and Georgia, on their respective turns I explained the options and benefits for their tile placement and let them choose where to place it.  In fact we were all involved in advising on tile placement on each turn.  Maddie found the game not that interesting (despite eventually winning) and Georgia found it all a little too complex.  Grandma and Debbie picked it up fairly quickly and enjoyed the game play.

Final scores were Maddie 72, Wayne 64, Georgia 61, Grandma 58 and Debbie 40.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Gaming with Grandma - 128

Another Saturday morning gaming session with my mother Sue (AKA Grandma) and two daughters, Maddie (11) and Georgia (6.5).  Our special guest today was my wife Debbie (AKA Mummy) who normally works most weekends but is currently recovering from recent surgery and was able to join us as a 5th player.

Our first game today was a game I'd been wanting to play since I received in a BoardGameGeek Math Trade back in 2008.  Die Mauer (translated as 'The Wall' in German) is a game in which each player is given a matching set of 7 wooden pieces (a tower, a gate and 5 wall pieces of different lengths) which they hold hidden in their hand.  On a turn, players secretly select a single piece and all reveal at the same time.  Depending on what type and the number of pieces revealed, as well as who is the Master Builder for that round (an orange piece that is rotated to the left player at the end of each round), determines the effect of building on that round.  There are a couple of simple building restrictions and we all picked this game up after a few quick rounds, with the exception of Georgia who at 6 years old struggled a little bit.

We played three rounds. Final scores were 1st Wayne - 16, 2nd Grandma - 17, 3rd Debbie - 26, 4th Maddie - 30 and 5th Georgia - 53.  I should point out that although I won overall, Grandma did win two of the three rounds but just missed out on taking 1st place overall when final scores were calculated.  All the adults enjoyed this game but the kids weren't that enamoured.  This would be a good pub or camping game and only needs a small flat surface.

Because Georgia came last we let her choose the next game.  She chose Pick Picknic.  In this game players are dealt a hand of cards representing either fowl or foxes of differing numerical strengths.  A playing area of 6 boards is laid out representing the enclosures of 6 types of fowl.  Each round a single coloured wooden cube is randomly deposited on each board.  These cubes are in three colours of differing values (green = 1, blue = 2, and yellow = 3) and are the victory points players are attempting to acquire.  Each turn players secretly choose a card from their hand and all then reveal at the same time.  Depending on what type of card (fowl or fox), and how many are played on a specific board, determines the outcome of the round.  Foxes eat fowls and this is another way players can acquire victory points.

The mechanics of this game are similar to Die Mauer but perhaps more thematically suited to children.  That's not to say adults can't enjoy this game, and I find it's a great game for parents and children to play together.

Final scores were 1st Debbie - 58, 2nd Wayne - 36, 3rd Georgia - 35, 4th Maddie - 28 and 5th Grandma - 9.  It was great to see Deb win and Georgia so close to beating me for 2nd place.

Friday, July 06, 2012

The Hobbit - It's a Wrap!

Principle photography has now finished on the set of The Hobbit films according to Peter Jackson's Facebook page.

I eagerly await the first of the two films, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, which will be released on 14 December 2012.