Ridere, ludere, hoc est vivere.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

PrezCon 2014 Part 1: Thursday

A couple of weeks ago, I enjoyed four days at my favorite gaming convention, PrezCon.  There were several hitches this year, a few things that didn't go right, but nevertheless I had a great time.  The next several posts will share some highlights.

(l. to r.) Rodney Bacigalupo,
Brian Greer, and Shane McBee
This is the second year that I ran the tournament for Pillars of the Earth (designers Michael Rieneck and Stefan Stadler; artists Michael MenzelAnke Pohl, and Thilo Rick, publisher Mayfair) at PrezCon.  The first heat involved ten players in three games - a sign that the game was growing in interest over last year.  In this first heat, Shane McBee won his board with 50 points, beating Rodney Bacigalupo and Brian Greer.  Ed Gilliland won with 47 points, beating Mark Beckman and Keith Ferguson.  And Philip Shea won with a commanding 59 points in the four-player game against Jeffrey Thornsen, Martin Houghton, and Dave Rohde.

The tournament I was most excited to participate in was my favorite game, Chicago Express (designer Harry Wu, artist Michael Menzel, publisher Queen Games).  I played against Lee Sensabaugh (the GM), Mike Senzig (who was in the final with me last year), and another player whose name escapes me.  I was fortunate to win in the Thursday afternoon heat with a decent total of $71.  It would turn out to be the only game I won in competition of the entire convention.

(Clockwise from left) Mike Senzig Jr., Keith Ferguson,
Brian Greer, Tom Snyder, Luke Senzig, Mike
Senzig  Sr., and Paul Owen playing VivaJava
- photo by T.C. Petty III
At some point on Thursday, Mike Senzig Senior, Mike Senzig Junior, Luke Senzig, Tom Snyder, Brian Greer, Keith Ferguson, and I got together for a game of VivaJava: The Coffee Game (designer T.C. Petty III, artist Chris Kirkman, publisher Dice Hate Me).  It was almost a surreal PrezCon moment when TCP3 himself came in and took our photograph.

Almost on a whim, I jumped into an evening heat of Ticket to Ride: The Card Game (designer Alan R. Moon, artists Julien Delval and Alan R. Moon, publisher Days of Wonder).  Pete Gathmann won with 109 points over Rodney B. (100 points) and myself (89 points).  I definitely mis-remembered what I had played, because I ended up with an excess of unused cars in my railyard, including locomotives.  I could safely have taken one or two tickets blind and probably scored them with all the excess cars I had.  Finishing third would turn out to be a recurring theme for the remainder of PrezCon.

Nature's Fingerprints
Artist Angela Michelle
I enjoy Formula Motor Racing (designer Reiner Knizia, artist Rodger B. MacGowan, publisher GMT) as a light card game with a car-racing theme. It's very popular with kids at PrezCon, but I can never get my own family interested in playing it. The nice thing about playing at PrezCon is getting to meet nice people. One of the players in my FMR game is the artist Angela Michelle, who gave me a postcard sample of her art. I finished third of five players in our heat.

One of the most fun parts of PrezCon is getting together after the tournaments for some late-night social gaming.  So Thursday night, we all re-convened for a round of Space Cadets: Dice Duel (designers Geoff and Sydney Engelstein, artists Michael Christopher and Cody Jones, publisher Stronghold).  That is exactly the kind of crazy, laugh-out-loud big-group game that we love late at night at a convention.  SC:DD did not disappoint.

We followed that one with Bang! (designer Emiliano Sciarra, artist Alessandro Pierangelini, publisher dV Giochi), the shoot-em-up spaghetti Western card game.  The only down side of Bang! is that it's a player elimination game that doesn't necessarily end quickly.  Tom was the Sheriff and had a hideout that made it difficult to shoot him, so once we were down to two players and weren't making much progress, we just called the game and went to bed at some ridiculous wee hour of Friday morning.

Next post:  Friday at PrezCon - Worthington's thoughts on Trains Planes and Automobiles; outcome of the Pillars of the Earth tournament; and the arrival of the Dice Hate Me posse

No comments:

Post a Comment