Thursday, September 24, 2009

22nd Sept 2009 Session Report: Catan Card Game & Le Havre

Been some time since I got to game on two consecutive days but as fortune would have it, Marcus managed to get half day off to game. Van unfortunately was still stuck in school so I decided to teach him the Settlers of Catan card game which I rate highly.

Catan Card Game

Since it was his first play, I refrained from loading him with the host of expansions and stuck to the original. He caught on quickly despite the number of wordy cards. While it took only about 75 min, it did feel somewhat longer due to the 'struggle' aspect of the game. He upgraded a couple of settlements and despite only managing one myself, I pipped him 12-10, thanks to my 5th settlement, and maintaining control of the Knight and Windmill symbols for most of the game. In particular, Marcus found himself at the shorter end of the Windmill event all game, which allowed me to rob him of multiple resources. It was nice for once to be on the other side as Van typically trumps me on this aspect in most of our games. Nonetheless, Marcus had a positive view of the game. Perhaps we can get some deck-building in once I get my second copy of the expansions set.

Le Havre

Marcus tried to teach us Imperial when Van got back but her mind was clearly not geared towards learning a new game, especially one as complex as Imperial. We aborted halfway through the rules explanation and opted for Le Havre instead. Amazingly, we bettered our last run of about 135 min and finished the game in about 110 min. Marcus ended with 220+ points yet again, while I only managed 190+. I realized I am still not fully familiar with the building powers, especially those in the special buildings deck and ended up taking some suboptimal actions by nabbing resources when a stronger move was available via a building action. Marcus did highlight me towards the end of the game that with the Bank in my tow, I should buy up the neutral buildings available with the relevant symbols. Guess I'm still rather inexperienced in the game despite playing it about 5 times. Nonetheless, with our speedy play, I can see it much more palatable bringing it to the table in future.

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