Billabong Boardgamers August 17th, 1998
Present: Alan, Julian, Janet, Doug
Alan Stewart writes:
Doug and Janet thought they'd played this a while ago, while Julian and Alan were well used to it.
Using Alan's "House Rules" -
The scores for the four hands played were:
Julian/Doug: 19(out) - 38(out) - 48 - 55
After the third hand we decided to just play the one more and end the game then, instead of playing to 100.
As usual fortunes swung, and the first 2 hands were pretty short. Janet and I would have gone out in the first hand if Doug hadn't broken-carred one of our carriages, but that's the game!
I think every team that went out used a wild card. Their influence on the game is powerful. Very few disasters played overall. No successful wreck from memory.
My set is looking pretty used, so I might pick up a replacement.
Doug Adams writes: Took me a few hands to settle in, and I was starting to enjoy it just at the moment the game ended. I found the exception rules like the counter cards and passenger train confusing. The counter cards (Way cards?) should have the text of the card they counter listed on them, as beginners will betray their hand as they peer at the symbol to see if it matches the way card in their hand! Still, good game - love the passing cards mechanism to your partner via the engines.
EUPHRAT AND TIGRIS
Again a different interesting game. I only initiated one conflict, early on, defeated Janet, but Doug snuck in, defeated me and took the spare "treasure" with his green leader. Later on Julian attacked me with internal conflicts and lost 2 before winning a third. My green leader was defeated and removed from the board twice. Consequently near the end I was very short of green. Earlier on I had the opportunity to build a monument in a kingdom which held Julian's black leader, and my three other colour leaders. The monument would have had to be black and another colour, but I chose not to build it.
The monuments built were - red and black (by me, in my black leader kingdom, Janet's red leader); green and black by Julian (in the kingdom with his black and green leader, after he kicked my green leader out); black and blue by Doug in a kingdom where the leaders changed quite a bit). Once I'd built this monument that solved by black block problem (I'd only seen and played 2 black tiles before building that monument).
I finally placed my green leader back on the board on my second last go, and fortunately drew a green tile, which I was able to place next to it on the final turn of the game. The game ended when the tiles ran out. There were still 4 "treasures" on the board. Both Doug and Julian had hastened this end by swapping tiles as one of their actions at least once.
(The +2 in my score being for 2 "treasures". I can't recall how the others allocated theirs.
Doug Adams writes: I tried to curb the aggressive streak in this game and try a more conservative approach. I only got into a couple of conflicts, and mainly concentrated on getting two tiles on the board each turn to keep the points trickling in. This game had a different feel from previous Billabong games, a careful and calculating game rather than our whirlwind conflicts we usually see.
JUMBO GRAND PRIX
A new game Doug brought along.
Interesting car racing theme game. The having to discard rule before drawing is particularly annoying.
Given the fact that we were keeping progressive totals, I couldn't lose before the final race, as long as I played a valid car. As I already had this left in my hand from the last hand, it was a question of who would fill the places.
Doug 15 16 23 31 49
I think everyone played at least 1 "28" point car, and in one race we had three of them with my 3 winning over a 2 and 1!
Doug Adams writes: This game is simplicity itself but has a certain charm and one or two moments of agony. A simple discard 1/draw 2 card game trying to build the best car for the upcoming race (the points for the race are displayed). Do you go for it, or build for a subsequent race....interesting. About as light as For Sale - very quick to play a hand, and will definitely be played again. I wasted the last two races going for sets of cars to try and get the maximum 28 points....probably a mistake as Janet was collecting what I was (and to my right, no less). I should have just gone for high value cards and left the sets alone late in the game.
GET THE GOODS
Similar to Express!
In the end Janet triggered the second scoring phase, Doug had a turn, then I triggered the final scoring phase before playing 2 cards, a mistake which cost me the game!
Alan 6 + 14 + 14 - 4 = 30
Every commodity was started. The only single monopoly at the end was my Stocks, although Doug was the only one to actually score with Yachts. Doug played 2 wild cards, and everyone else played 1.
In the end a close finish.