Late in 2013, the Muskegon Area Gamers had a discussion about what games and/or events we wanted to accomplish in 2014. There were about fourteen or so who gave contributions. In no particular order, here is what was discussed and what we’ve accomplished.
1. Twilight Imperium
We resolved to play Twilight Imperium. Lots of TI3. We have accomplished this. But we also resolved to play The Long War–a 14 victory point saga of Twilight Imperium. As of this posting, we are still trying to get this scheduled. The constraint? We need eight players who will commit to coming to two consecutive Sundays to finish this beast. Due to various gamer/recruitment snags, we have not yet accomplished our goal of playing Twilight Imperium the Long War.
2. Avalon Hill’s Civilization
I used to play Civilization back in the day. Then we moved on to other gaming areas. But some of our group had never played and wanted to try it really badly. We managed to play this twice in 2014. We also have it slated again for a Sunday in October (see our meetup if you want in). The game was a success, as you can imagine.
3. Pax Britannica
I’ve read the rules to Pax Britannica three times now. And we still haven’t managed to get it to the table yet. This game has everything that our group would find interesting: negotiation, tactics, economics, historical theme. If we can set aside 7 hours on a Sunday to get it played, we will have an uproariously good time.
4. Formula D: with the advanced rules
I’ve always enjoyed the base game of Formula D. But some members of the Muskegon Area Gamers didn’t like it so much. The desire to try the advanced rules has been mentioned many times. Well, we’ve finally tried it (twice!) in 2014. The advanced rules modify how you take damage, requiring players to manage several systems on their race card. These include brakes, body damage, tires and gear box. The advanced rules were a success and we will never look back.
Matt bought the newer Valley Games’ edition of Titan, an old Avalon Hill game from back in the day. Matt had fond memories of this game and thought he would enjoy it with his new group in Muskegon. Valley Games, unfortunately, is a horrible game company and Matt’s copy of Titan (which cost him a small fortune) suffered from water damage from the boat trip from Asia. Boooooo Valley Games!
We did try this nonetheless. It was an intro with three of us. The game is kinda cool but might take a long time considering the object is player elimination. A full game of this may be scheduled in December. Check or comment on the meetup if you want to try it sooner.
6. Mage Knight
A few of our gamers are very fond of Vlaada Chvatil’s Mage Knight from Wizkids Games. So much are they enamored that they want it to get played once a month. It’s on the docket for tomorrow. If our showing is strong, it will be put on the docket again in November.
This game is a very heavy strategy game with lots of moving parts. To fully appreciate it, one would have to play it about five times in order to really be competitive.
7. Cabin Con in Gun Lake, Michigan
We go to GenCon every year. Since GrandCon is so close to Muskegon, we usually go there as well. But what we liked most about all these conventions is just playing games. So why don’t we have our own convention? Dusty put together a trip for six of us. We spent the weekend in a cabin. We cooked our meals outside. We played games non-stop for three days. It was by far, the biggest success we’ve had this year.
8. A foray into Roleplaying games
Many of us board gamers were one time RPG’ers. We simply moved onto better rules, better games, better everything. But the RPG’er in us wouldn’t die. We have discussed the possibility of doing a one-off RPG session. Kevin, one of our regulars, is very theatrical and loves doing storytelling/RPG stuff. He has a Cthulhu session that he wants us to try. The session is slated for October, just in time for Halloween.
9. Memoir ’44: Overlord Campaign
I love Memoir ’44. It’s so much fun playing with toy tanks and infantry. And managing your hand to maximum the effectiveness of your units is very fun. The Overlord rules for Memoir ’44 look intriguing. Four players to a side with one of them acting as the general. He manages the hand of cards for his side. And then issues the cards to them. The cooperative/competitive nature sounds like it will be a coup-de-grace with our game group. Dusty has the rules. The game will probably take place in October or November. Check the schedule on meetup.
10. Blood Royale from Games Workshop
GW’s Blood Royale was recommended to our group. On paper, this game appears to have everything we would like: negotiation, trade, warfare, conflict, deal making and deal breaking. In practice, it went over like a lead balloon. We tried it twice. We failed it twice. Jon’s copy and my copy went the way of the Dodo. Too bad. We really thought this game would rival Republic of Rome and Civilization.
On behalf of the Gaming Annex in Muskegon