Having your cake and eating it

[Also posted at the Ra’anana Boardgames Group site.]

We had seven (eventually) for tonight’s session.

Laurie made us play a stupid game about cakes. (Yes, I came last.) Ofer won with a brilliant piece (sic) of play. By me. I gave him the win with a daft move in the penultimate round, just to see what would happen. (Honest.) Not one of my favorite filler (sic) games. What’s it called, Laurie?

We moved on to me teaching the others Reibach & Co. This is an Alan Moon suit collection game, with the scoring in three rounds triggered by cards randomly seeded in the deck. It’s light, easy and Avraham won just ahead of Rochelle and Yehuda.

Then Ori turned up and we split into a three and four. The dedicated hard core gamers – Avraham, Ori and Yehuda – played Troyes (see the graphic below). It’s, apparently, a dice resource allocation game which Yehuda thinks is better than the well received Alien Frontiers.

Laurie, Ofer, Rochelle and I played Ticket to Ride Asia using the team play option – men v women. This is a really neat twist. Each partnership gets a turn for each partner, but cannot communicate. The only shared knowledge is that there is a common pool of cards for each partnership (see picture at the top). In your turn, you can use your own cards and any of the common pool cards of your partnership. Too bad if you use cards your partner wants. (When you draw cards, 1 out of 2 must go to the common pool, and 1 ticket from those drawn also goes there.)

Ofer and I played as one unit very effectively. We were helped in that every ticket we drew fitted well with what we had already constructed. Laurie and Rochelle found the Asian map a little unsettling – through unfamiliarity – and so had that other handicap. The men won.

I had really missed gaming and tonight’s session was what I needed. Really good fun.