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Stories from The WBC 2002-Part 2


Posted By:  Keith Levy, 8/13/2002 9:50:00 PM.
Last Modified By:  name withheld, 8/13/2002 9:51:00 PM.
Views:  4794

I had great fun running RA! We had 140 different people attend the tournament this year. I didn't even make it to the semi's....I could have, as I was an alternate, but I wanted to see others play in it this year. I just felt priviledged to be a GM and to be able to play amongst such great players! As it turned out, I only had four of the five qualifying gentlemen show up for the final game, so all four of them received a plaque. The game turned out to be a rather exciting one -- very close; fame points tied, sun totals tied, # pharoahs tied, so it came down to who possesed the highest sun at the end of the last epoch. I think that next year I am going to do something similar to what John did with the POF tournament so that I don't have to worry about having too many semifinalists.

I also enjoyed helping Eric run Carcasonne. He was a little overwhelmed, since we ended up having 168 different players participate in that tournament (in its first year ever). I think that he and I might switch games that we are GMing, since he wants to play Carcasonne more, and I want to play RA more. I entered several other tournaments; in POF I won a game which did qualify me for the semifinals, but I blew them off and went to play Lost Cities (thought I had a better chance to win that one than to win POF); in Robo Ralley, I won my first game which put me into an 8 player final that turned out to be completely brutal! I pulled out before the end (with everyone's permission) to go play the semifinal round of my team game.

It was a lot of fun though! In Settlers of Catan, I couldn't get a break and I lost all three games; but I enjoyed every one of them. Finally, my last tournament was Slapshot, and I made it to the finals in my first game, but I got knocked out, so I didn't move on. But I had loads of fun. You couldn't give me enough plaques to equal the amount of fun I had playing at BPA. That's what is so wonderful about gaming conventions!

I finally learned how to play Puerto Rico. Eric is buying it on the internet as we speak, so it should be available at my house by Aug. 16th.

Let's play! See everyone on the 16th!

Michelle Goldstein
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This year I decided I would attend the entire event and play tournaments as much as possible, so I didn't get into as many pickup games as last year. I was also going to gm Attila and help Harold and John with Mexica and Puerto Rico respectively. Lastly, I was on a team, GCOM Caboose, with Harold, Rich, and Jamie. I had originally planned to play Puerto Rico as my team game, but Harold had played online much more than I, so that was his best choice. Harold said:
"You win sometimes in El Grande. Do El Grande", which I did. I bumped into Jamie early the first day, and she says "You will win your team game" or something like that, and I'm thinking "oh boy, nothing like a little pressure."

I think I will remember this WBC as a week of blunders for me. It was a bonehead play in Taj Mahal that cost me that game, and my one game of Puerto Rico was the worst I have ever played. It was so bad that when someone on Spielfrieks complained about a bad player in his PR
game, I thought "oh, god, please, let it not be me." It wasn't, but my heart skipped a beat. It was particularly galling because I thought the guy to my left was obnoxious, and I had this Ally McBeal fantasy of me sitting astride his chest with my hands at his throat with
security guys pulling me off.

I enjoyed roaming the halls between events looking at setup games and meeting people. I saw Doug Hoyleman with his Facts in Five wood at the bottom of the escalator. My first instinct was to knock him down, grab the trophy, and run like hell in the opposite direction, but I think he read my posture because he suddenly clutched it to his chest and took two quick steps backwards.

My best fun was the El Grande tournament. It was my team game and I did well! I made it to the finals! I blundered in that game too (I think I'm paying up for past sins), so I finished 5th, but I was only 10 points out of first, and I lost 8 in my blunder. I was thrilled to add points to my team especially after Jamie had turned the screws, which she will deny vehemently I'm sure.

I won a game of Union Pacific, which I consider an absolute lightning strike fluke. I bypassed the next round to play Princes of Florence, which I won. I lost POF in the semi's to Arthur Fields, but I had a good score around 60 nonetheless.

A few other disconnected memories...
I remember a cop reaching through a doorway and yanking out some guy with words like "you're with me" or "step out here" or some such thing.

I remember relaxing a bit in the little garden area when some granny brought out some screaming kids to entertain me. Then these guys would come out this door in pairs and huddle off in corners in animated conversations. What the? It turns they were doing secret negotiations in some Diplomacy-like game, but it puzzled me for a moment.

When I wasn't playing tournaments, I'd go down to Cafe Jay to try out some new games he had there. I played or saw:

How Ruck
He will release this two-handed card game as Heave-Ho. I watched two guys play, and boy, this is a drinking game if there ever was one. You win these small whiskey barrels, but I see shot glasses that the loser must chug.

TransAmerica
A very light railroad game. A game you could play while eating a sandwich and watching the 11 o'clock news at the same time. It reminds me of bingo, of all things. You get five secret city cards, and you try to lay sticks that connect the cities while waiting for someone to jump up and yell bingo!, or I win, or something. I don't think I'll
buy it.

Clash of the Gladiators
You pick plastic trays of gladiators, which you put on the board. You then womp on your neighbors by rolling dice. When you run out of players, you womp on animals, or they womp on you. I was the big womper -- I won my one game. I won't buy it.

Pueblo
A Kramer game and as abstract as Torres. You get these odd-shaped half blocks (you put two together to form a cube), which you position on the board building a single shared pueblo. One half block is your color and the other is neutral. You then move this little inspector guy around the board's perimeter. When he stops, he looks inward, and you score negative points if he sees walls of your color. The idea of the game is to place your blocks so they hide as much as possible behind neutral walls or your opponents' walls. An odd and interesting game.

Dragonland
A pretty Knizia game. I heard the rules but did not play

Pizarro & Co
Pure auctions. John Weber bought it earlier, and we played it at Michelle's. One night about 3am, I strolled through the big ballroom. It was empty except for 4 guys in the far corner who were playing it. I watched for awhile and then we played a second game immediately (how often do you see that?) As I said, it is all auctions. However, you can flip the boards over and change the game a bit, so there's some variety. For example, if you win one particular set of auctions, you get to play a blackjack sort of game for victory points. I had the game won, but the blackjack player beat me by playing blackjack, which disappointed everyone who wanted him to bust. I'm so-so on this one.

The whole week was great fun. Next year I would like to run La Citta if I can get the votes please vote La citta for me thank you Hopefully, most of my sins will have been paid in full and I can stop making bonehead plays.

Stan Hilinski