Saturday, 10 April 2010

Von's Frugal Year: Month The Third

Turns out that I've finished my latest batch of essays a day ahead of schedule, so I've time to leave you with some food for thought before I scurry off to the Barbarian North for a week and leave the laptop behind.

First things first: how did the Frugal March go?

Spend Less - brilliantly. Not a penny spent. Jokes about the state of my bladder are not welcome. ;)

Game More - brilliantly. Minor dilemma resolved with minimum of gamer angst. Some thoroughly enjoyable games were played, too, beyond the Space Hulk and WFB I've already used precious bandwidth to opine about.

We broke out Zombies! when an old mate from Wolverhampton came down to see us, which was fairly enjoyable up until the elimination of two players in short order. Zombies! is, in theory, a first-past-the-post game that should avoid situations where two players are out and waiting for the rest to finish, but a run of bad luck can leave someone eliminated early and two players of equal skill can stonewall each other from meeting either of the victory conditions for quite a while. While I like the screw-your-opponent potential of Zombies! a lot, I can't help but feel that the zombie apocalypse setting works better for co-operative gaming, and the thing about co-operative gaming is that there's no advantage to eliminating another player. You might even want to let someone who's 'died', or otherwise had their presence removed from play, back in, so they can continue with the fun times. The other thing with Zombies! is that it suffers from a bad case of expansion creep, with a lot of extra little boxes out to tempt with foolish expenditure.

The House of Von also had a little away-day when another old mate and former Mage player came back down for a weekend visit, and we decided the time was right to play 1000 Blank White Cards again. We've traditionally sat down and played this astonishingly Frugal game (pack of blank index cards, pair of scissors, some black biros, DONE!) in pubs or coffee houses or other public places (because it's hilarious and because we meet all sorts of nice people who are interested... plus the occasional batch of less-than-nice people who find people having fun in public offensive to their delicate sensibilities, but we don't care about them because they're dead inside) and it's usually a damn good laugh.

Finally, the Dark Heresy campaign is lurching forward. Three characters have now been generated, but a schedule conflict has forced one of our players to bow out (he works on an odd rotation and the only days when he's free at the same time as everyone else are days when we're already committed to doing other, non-gaming stuff), so it's back on hold for that bad boy until I can recruit another player or two (going to see some people who might be interested tonight...).

Oh, and I got some more work done on the battlefield: a set of eight modular hill pieces have been cut, painted and textured, as has a cover sheet for the river (so the table can be extended to its full 4'x4' dimensions for games where the extra six inches of flank might be important). I'll get some pictures taken of those (and the Dark Elves) when I'm back from the Northern Wastes.


Tristan said...

I played zombies recently for the first time - I thought when you died you just restarted in the middle with 3 life & 3 bullets?

We however didn't realize that you can only play one card per round, so our one game took 6 hours - I ended up saving my boosts for whoever got closest to winning!

pete the pagan-gerbil said...

Yes, we've had a long game of Zombies! take over a games night in the past... Good fun, but I agree that I'd prefer something a bit more co-operative.

Von said...

@ Tristan - oooh, I'll have to check that. The game would rise in my estimation if that is true... only to fall again if the one-card-per-round thing is (maybe I've been spoiled by years of Warmachine, but I quite like combo-tastic gameplay).

I don't understand how we manage to miss things in a rulebook that small...

Flamekebab said...

Zombies!!! is great - particularly as there are so many "No, fuck *YOU*" cards. I've had several games with assorted groups of people and had a good time.