Wednesday, March 2, 2005

Tuesday March 1st - Taj Mahal

Originally uploaded by coljen.
Billygames treks off to India this week to play Renier Knizia’s Taj Mahal. We have played this game twice before, 10/09/02 when Neil triumphed and 14/01/03 when the dear departed Dave came out the winner. By departed of course I mean he isn’t able to make it these days not he’ know brown bread. Anyway as usual here’s a brief description from BGG.

Another game in Alea's bookcase series, this game takes place in India. There are twelve turns with an auction for up to six different prizes each turn. Players use cards to bid for the various prizes. The trick is when you take a turn and you've got the highest bid on a prize, you can either spend more cards to try for other things or simply take your winnings and walk away. The prizes are mostly positions on the board and players get more points for connecting provinces on the map. But as becoming typical for Herr Knizia, there are several other ways of scoring points in this game. After the final area on the board is auctioned, the player with the highest point total takes the game.

Neil managed to gain control of the Princess and used her to his advantage for a few turns taking an early lead. He also came last (or first, depends how you look at it) in 3 out of the first 4 auctions only picking up one card each time. Richard seemed to have absolute control over the mogul for most of the game, as usual he also had a fistful of does he do that!! Steve also had a wad of cards and gradually overhauled Neil to take the lead.
I think Steve ended up winning 4 provinces and at least 2 goods chits which gave him a very healthy score. I made a mistake going head to head with Steve for control of a province, he was on my left with a handful of cards which meant I had to concede before he did. I was at the back at that time and my position didn’t improve. In the end it came down to a battle between Neil and Steve. Richard had built up an impressive network of palaces but couldn’t in the end catch up. Garry hadn’t played the game before, but picked it up quickly and had a good game, and said that he enjoyed his first visit to India!

Final Scores
Steve 39, Neil 38, Richard 34, Garry 30, Colin 29

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