Wednesday, October 6, 2004

Tuesday October 5th - Samurai

With only Steve, Garry and myself able to make it this week it gave us the opportunity to play a 4 (or 3) player game. Garry chose Renier Knizia’s 1998 game Samurai. I do own a copy of this game myself, being a fan of the good Doctor, so I didn’t mind that at all. Here is a brief description of the game courtesy the Geek.

Another of the Reiner Knizia 'tile trilogy,' this game is ostensibly set in medieval Japan. Players use hexagonal tiles to surround cities, which have one to three different figures: rice paddies, buddhas, or high hats. The tiles represent influence on particular facets of the cities, and the highest influence on a figure when the city is surrounded takes that figure. The object of the game is to have more of any one else in one category, and then have the most remaining figures.

This description doesn’t do the scoring system justice. To even be eligible to compete for the win you have to have a majority in one of the different figures, rice paddies, buddhas or high hats. If you are able to get a majority in two of these it’s an automatic win. If more than one has a majority you then count your remaining pieces and the one with the most is the winner. This is a fairly quick playing game and with only three players it is even quicker. We managed three games. The first game got under way after a quick resumé of the rules, as none of us had played it for a while. Each city has one of each figure and the rest are placed by the players on the board in clockwise order. You start with 5 tiles behind your screen, either random or chosen, we had a random selection. These tiles of course determine to a certain extent the initial placement of the figures on the board.

When all the figures are placed you then place your tiles trying to accumulate a majority of influence on the piece and when it is surrounded the majority influence captures it. This is a good thinking game but one that plays quickly, quite a feat really. In the first game we each had a majority so could compete for the win. Steve edged it with myself second.

Score (*denotes starting player)

Steve 5, Colin* 4, Garry 3

In the second game the high hats seemed to get grouped together on one end of the board which was quite interesting. Steve started this one and again gained the win. This time with a majority in two of the pieces, Garry had a majority in the other, I didn’t even qualify, with no majorities.

Score (*denotes starting player)

Steve* 2 majorities outright win, Garry 3, Colin zilch!

Game 3 and the start player rotated to Garry, Steve could’t pull off the hatrick, could he? Garry started by capturing all 3 pieces in the city and was off to a flying start. By the way the pieces that are captured are put behind your screen, so you have to try and remember what everybody else has won. I thought that I wasn’t doing too badly, how wrong can you be. Yup, Steve did it again with another outright win with 2 majorities, this time Garry didn’t quality having no majorities.

Score (*denotes starting player)

Steve* 2 majorities outright win, Colin 4, Garry nadda!

Rating (0-10)

Colin 7.5

This is basically for my own reference, Natalie has posted the official Billygames order for choosing games.

The order, for the record, is:

Dave (Unfortunately only makes guest appearances now)







This order is in no particular sequence and definitely nothing to do with age. ;-)

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