3 minute read

I picked up copies of Maelstrom and Mystery Rummy: Al Capone late last week and enjoyed a pleasant long weekend of gaming. We didn’t get to any monster games but we did break out some new titles.

Jill and I tried out the new Mystery Rummy (new to us anyway, #5 – Bonnie & Clyde is supposed to be published this year by Rio Grande) on Friday and a couple of other times over the weekend. As a 2 player game it was ok but felt it was much more interesting as a 3 player. The gavel cards in this version are significantly more powerful with multiple players (e.g. Raid collects the layoffs from all the other players for one of your gangster melds). Jack the Ripper (#1) is still our favorite 2 player Mystery Rummy.

Jill and I also tried out a Colovini design that’s been around for quite awhile — Carolus Magnus. There are 5 different paladin clans (colored cubes) that the players place in their court or on the 15 regions representing Charlemagne’s empire. Control of a region is checked whenever Charlemagne stops in the region with control going to the player with the largest paladin force in the region. When a player gains control of a region, they place one of their towers (out of 10) on the region. The first player to place all 10 towers on regions is the winner. An interesting game and a bit of a brain burner at times, it moves quickly and I’d like to try this with 3 players.

On Sunday, we were at Bob & Julie’s for small cookout. The kids played Bohnanza and the adults were able to squeeze in a game of Traumfabrik. Jill crushed us with something like 92 points. She likes to slowly hoard all the contracts and finish her 3 original scripts while the rest of us try to finish as many scripts and go for the awards. She does well at this game.

On Memorial Day, Tristan and I got in a little Blue Moon. He likes to play and is about the only one I can get to play that with me. He’s also uncannily good at it and wins most of the time when we play. Caleb and I tried out Maelstrom. I picked this up because I was intrigued by the use of hexagonal tiles to create the board but with a style of play similar to a CCG ala Magic. We found the game engrossing and will be playing some more.

Jill and I also turned in a play of another Colovini game we’ve been playing off and on for the last couple of weeks – Corsari. It’s pirate themed card game that’s classified as a set collection game. I think of it more along the lines of push-your-luck. Basically, how long do I continue to try and improve my hand vs. going out? Essentially, the person with the most points that don’t match (i.e. cards that aren’t part of your crew or your prisoners) takes those points for the hand. The first player to 100+ loses. It’s interesting enough that we continue to play and I think it will end up as one that is enjoyable enough to pull off the shelf every once in awhile and play.

The gem of the weekend was Fairy Tale. The boys and I played this a lot. I believe I’ve found something that they truly enjoy playing. They have wanted to play every day since I introduced them to it. The fantasy theme and the card drafting appeal to them. This very well could be what Lost Cities is to me and Jill — something light, quick and enjoyable that we’ll play frequently in the months ahead. The first time I played Fairy Tale was with Chris and KC while we were in Portland over spring break. I’d thought about it off and on since and finally picked up a copy about 2 weeks ago. I’m glad I did!