I wasn’t at this week’s session but Steve kindly sent me a report.
The first game was Amun-re. The game is split into two scoring rounds and both myself and Mark G where floundering as to what was the best strategy, we consequently scored a very lowly 6 and 5 respectively, having not picked up any bonus scoring cards, together with very suspect postioning on the board. Phil (who hadn’t played before) took the lead at the half-way point with 16 with Nige on 13 and Mark K slightly further back on 11, but with a huge amount of money.
In the second half me and Mark G came back with a vengeance, I scored 25 and Mark 24 (the two highest scores of the second round) to take our scores to 31 and 29. Phil managed 21 to take his score to 37 and Nige and Mark K took their scores to 32 and 29.
Me and Mark G in the auctions had both played for areas that would take advantage of bonus scoring cards and other scoring opportunities (something lacking in our play in the first half of the game) The other three struggled to pick up bonus power cards and their second half scores reflected this.
Phil looked good for the win, but there was still the question of points for the three richest players. Mark K was still very rich and took the 6pts, I managed 4pts for second highest and Nige got the 2pts for third highest. This made the overall scores Phil 37, me and Mark K on 35, Nige on 34 and Mark G on 29. Mark G had little chance of being richest as he was using a 10 gold card to secure the first place in the sacrifice phase, saying that “it was all I had” until Nige pointed out you could get change from the bank, much to everyones amusement.
A very close finish in the end and a good win for Phil, although I did say it was a win for Garry as none of the closest contenders on the hall of fame had won.
Next up was a quick game of Catagena, Mark K had to go so it left the four of us. Cartagena is a nice 30 minute filler that is played in the same time if played by 2 or 5 players.
The game consists of playing cards with symbols on them to advance your pirate from his jail cell to the escape boat along a twisting board, but the only way to get new cards is to move your pirate backwards towards the cells. It’s a constant balance of having enough cards and getting your pirates moving in the right direction.
Me and Nige were the front runners for the most part, progressing steadily up the board. Mark G had two front runners, but also four pirates who hadn’t left the cells! He suddenly realised he was in danger of getting the guys back in the cells isolated and started moving them up. Nige was the first into the boat and quickly followed this up with 3 others using what I called the ‘pistol express’ (all the pistol symbols were covered up) I had by now got 3 on the boat but still needed two more turns to win. (time I didn’t think I had) Fortunately for me Nige had run out of pistol cards and instead had to move his remaining two pirates with other cards one of which was a skull symbol. Luckily I had 3 skull cards and was able to put my remaining three pirates straight onto the boat in one turn for the win.