Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Vikings and Germans and Brits, Oh my!

Nevin came over on Sunday, 5/18, and we played his copy of Fire and Axe: A Viking Saga. Something is just not right with a Viking game when the winner, Nevin, is the Viking player who does more settling and trading than raiding! And you call yourself a Viking!

Nevin came in first with 200+ something points; I squeaked by Cody for second place by 1 point with 184 points to his 183. Both Nevin and Cody did more of the trading/settling actions while I concentrated on trading and raiding. I really thought Cody was doing well as he was the king of completing Sagas. Mid-game it looked like he had 6-7 Sagas to my 2 and Nevin's 2-3. I successfully raided 9 of the 12? towns on the map including both Paris(8VP) and Constantinople(12VP) but Nevin cashed in on Rome for 20VP with a Rune card that doubled its VPs. As far as settling, my son, Cody concentrated on the North West part of the map while Nevin controlled the North East map section. I had a toe hold in South Britain but Nevin eventually stole two of my settlements in England through Rune card play. At game end, I had a mere 3 settlements. In the end, it just didn't seem like it was worth pursuing a raiding heavy strategy but I had fun. Aand it was in true Viking spirit!

As always, after a first playing I like to go through the rulebook and see what we played wrong. Unfortunately, the rulebook is not available for download so I had to settle for the various rules summaries available on Boardgamegeek. Some of the items I noticed are as follows:
1. When you return to the Wintering space, your ship can only keep 1 crewman. All other crewman and goods must be removed from the ship.
2. I'm thinking you may only play Runes during your turn.
3. Plus, Runes may not be played while your ship is in one of the home ports.
4. The Difficult Sailing penalties must be assessed at the end of each days movement, not at the end of the total move.
5. A player may not settle a port in a region until the town in that region has been successfully raided.

On Saturday, 5/17, Mervyn and I played "A Veritable Bloodbath" scenario from Combat Commander: Mediterranean. My Brits were on the attack against Mervyn's Germans (conscripts and Volksgrenadiers with wire and trenches defending a few buildings) It came down to whether or not Merv could make the the Sudden Death die roll, end the scenario and win by VPs. He had two chances (he had the initiative card) but missed both rolls and on my first card play of the next turn my British advanced into melee against a lone German squad and eliminated him for the Surrender win. The only thing that kept me in the game was the damage I was doing with my Heavy Machine Gun on my left flank. I believe it accounted for 5 of the 6 casualties I needed for the Surrender win.

We then played a quick game of Wings of War: Dawn of War. This is the WWII version, with a German and Italian plane (me) against Merv's Spitfire and Hurricane. The Spitfire, especially the naval version can put out some firepower. I decided I was going to keep my planes together and gang up on one of Merv's planes. Merv had the same idea but his formation split after the first pass so I was able to concentrate both planes firepower on one if his and shot it down with 22 damage points.

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