Boardgamecafe.net Xmas Eve Meetup Report @ Old Town Kopitiam Cheras 24/12/2010
One thing I love about organizing meetups is the meeting of new friends and the reunion with past friends who sometimes return for a game or two. This Xmas Eve, I received a surprise call from a gamer fren whom I’ve not seen for a year or two. Welcome back to the world of boardgaming. It’s not just old friends we welcomed but old classic games like Samurai, and with OTK’s first play of Alien Frontier & Tego. Merry Christmas to all!
Gamers: Jonathan Soo, Neo Say Soon (neo), Aw Yang Uei (aw), his wife and daughter, S Peir, Allen (blownfreaks), Wai Yan (waiyan) and CK Au (jack208)
Games: Tego, Alien Frontier, Dixit and Samurai
Location: Old Town Kopitiam Cheras | Google Map | GPS: N O3° 6.195° E 101° 44.058°
Date/Time: 24 December 2010 10.00 PM – 12:30 AM (Fri)
We were pleasantly surprised to receive an email from a En Imran who’s from Junior Bros. They’ve just designed and produced a card game called “Tego” which is themed on the recruitment head-hunting industry.
Imran was very quick to send us a demo set and without further ado, we brought that to the OTK table for a testdrive. Allen and Neo were very eager to playtest it!
I’m reproducing Imran’s email message to us so that those parties interested to purchase this game can liaise direct with Junior Bros. J
Hi there,I am writing on behalf of Junior Brothers, the producers of Tego : Malaysia’s First Original Card Game.We would like to introduce you to Tego and to receive feedback and evaluation regarding our card game.Our game is original and 100% crafted by Malaysians. It has been produced to be at par with other international titles.For more information, do kindly visit www.juniorbros.comWe hope we could explore possibilities of potential avenues after you have reviewed Tego.Do provide us with your correspondent address and we shall send you a complimentary copy of Tego.Thanks.
Alrite, back to the game itself.
Since waiyan had already read the rules to the game, she had the honor to teach us (me, allen and neo).
The game is essentially a set collection, where you are recruiters in La-la Land and your job is to build a CV to staff the management team for a top client.
You can source from a pool of global employees, each with different attributes and characteristics. The designer appeared to have fleshed out the employee attributes with great details but strangely these attributes didn’t matter much in the job search.
Headhunters Neo and Allen busy searching thru the CV piles to identify top candidates for their client!
My final set of CV for my client’s Management Team.
Neo with his winning sets of CV to claim the title of TOP Recruiter of La-la Land… only for audit to reveal ahem, “discrepancies” in the CVs he submitted. He managed to score 110 pts out of the maximum possible of 100. LOL!
While muttering to himself it was a case of honest miscalculation, Neo has sinced switched job to the IT industry where he’s been headhunted now.
If you wanted to try this game, go and get yourself a copy from Junior Bros. We did have a lot of fun playing this!
Next up was Alien Frontier which is Allen’s copy; him being one of two Msians who pre-ordered a copy from Clever Mojo. OTK is happy to have a first-play of Alien Frontier here tonight, the game having received many good reviews lately!
Allen’s Alien Frontier with the special bonus components first identified by Hiew (read Hiew’s review)
OTK would also like to say Welcome Back to Aw (same surname as me but not related) whom we’ve not game with for a year or two. He’s back tonight with his wife & daughter. While wife & daughter were at the other table doing DIXIT with waiyan & frens, Aw joined us for a 4-player Alien Frontier.
The game map reminds me of Mission Red Planet.
There are dices in this game, and each player gets up to 6 of them… and while they do introduce an element of luck into the game, they are not unmanageable. The dice are used to determine what actions you can take, and very much like Kingsburg and Roll thru the Ages, you seldom felt like you do not have some tactical flexibility.
None of your dice is ever wasted. At worst, you just get a cheap resource or a single step forward on the Colonist Hub (where you prepare your ships to launch onto the colonies). But never wasted (like Roll thru the Ages) which is what makes such game very likeable by most (with the exception of those hardcore gamers who hate dice).
But a good throw of the dice will expedite your work… a three-of-a-kind throw will allow you to immediate launch a ship into any of the colony using the Colony Constructor!
The territories in the map are colonies waiting for you to gain a majority control, which gives you VP plus a special privilege afforded to each colony.
The special privilege granted to two of the colonies I’ve majority control in – Asimov Crater and Lem Badlands.
Neo enjoying the screwage factor found in the game!
The screwage factor comes in the form of Alien Tech cards you can draw… When Allen was focusing on drawing Alien Tech cards early in the game, given he has had prior playing experience with this game, we quickly conclude that Alien Tech cards are the x-factor here… And we were indeed correct as there’s just many benefits you can gain from the cards, you simply need to be fighting for it even in the earlier stages of the game.
Not unlike El Grande, each majority control earns you VPs but having 2nd majority also earns you some limited VP so it might pay to adopt a divested approach.
There are a lot of Alien Tech cards that can mess your plan up in the last stages so be aware of them and be prepared for them.
Overall it was a very very good first impression of the game, and this looks like another very good gateway game. What I’m pleased is that this is another top-notch game from a non-mainstream publisher. Not another Zman, Rio Grande or Fantasy Flight. Good to see such creativity coming from the “small boys” of the Boardgame Publisher market. Let’s hope we get to see more of such good quality games.
P/s Boardgamecafe.net will be bringing this game to the local market when its’ 2nd print run is ready end March.
While we were doing our Alien Frontier session, waiyan together with two of her teachers and Jonathan joined Aw’s wife & daughter for another fun session of DIXIT.
This game never fails to create a buzz whenever it’s brought to the table. We suspect the no. of cards may limit replayability (then again you still have the expansion) but so far we’ve not appear to reach that stage yet.
The DIXIT group moved on to the next game CITADELS.
Knizia’s Samurai was then brought to the table after they were done playing DIXIT (and in our table, we were still doing Alien Frontier).
Aw’s daughter seemed to be picking up very fast on the Samurai game.
After we were done with Alien Frontier, Aw & family have to leave. That leaves three of us – neo, waiyan and me – and since neo has not played Samurai, we decided to intro him to this yet-another-classic favorite of ours.
Going thru the rules of Samurai with Neo
Immediate fight for the capital with it’s three resource-rich province!
The “untainted” southern islands in the early stage of the game…
Neo burning his brain over Samurai. Hope he enjoys it!
That’s it for a quiet Xmas Eve gathering of gamers & frens. It’s also nice to be able to catch-up with Aw & his family over a couple of games. J
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