Don't fret if you're visiting for the first time and the blog seems out-of-date. We still meet, regular as clockwork; we just don't blog about it every time!

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Last meet of 2012 over!

Ok people, yesterday was our last meet for 2012!  Meetings will resume on the 8th of January 2013 and continue in their bi-monthly fashion as usual.

Met some lovely new faces last night and played some different games.  We did indeed play Professor Liar but I think another run will be needed to determine how reliably good it is.  I think I was a pint too far to be any good.... we'll give it another go on the 8th!

Have a great holiday season and Merry Christmas if you're a Christmasser!

Friday, 7 December 2012

Personally, I'm well-known for my work in Marxist Calculator Theory

Get your creativity caps on because next week, I'll be bringing the necessaries to play the endlessly marvellous Saturday Morning Breakfast Club's 'Professor Liar' parlour game.

This will be our last meet before Christmas but our sister group in Bristol will have another night before then.  They play at the Barley Mow in Bristol on the Tuesday, starting at 7.30pm.  Email Ian for any other details.

Merry Jingle everyone!xx

Friday, 23 November 2012

BBGG's First Birthday....


How time flies....  Attendees were treated to my sincerest cake decorating and more of Phoebe's delicious fudge.

Friday, 29 June 2012

Better Settlers app

The Better Settlers Icon - hexagonal pattern with three coloured hexagons; red at the top, yellow on the lower left and green on the lower right.
Better Settlers
My snookums-snuggly-bunny-lover has alerted me to a Settlers app in the Google app store that promises to make your 'offline set-up of Settlers...easier, faster and fairer'!

The authors wrote it when they notice that most games were over within 15 minutes and it seemed obvious that natural bias had crept in.

Does anyone with an Android phone want to download this and test it out next session? It's free :D   Check it out here

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

More beautiful home-made Catan...

More beautiful home-made Catan boards....One of these but lacquered in colour, please!

See you all later xx

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

BBGG11 - Another classic night.

Hello all.

Once again, I come to report a marvellous and lovely meeting.  After our last....shall we say, more exclusive?... gathering of 9 I wasn't sure what to expect.

How lovely then, to rock up at 7.40 and find about 15 people already present and playing!

We had new faces again, to my delight; some friends of current players, some from Couchsurfing.  You are all welcomed and your company was without fault.

The evening was kind of segregated.  Over one side, we had some players working on a large board, playing something that I never quite got around to asking about (oops!).  However, it looked entertaining and engaging.

Over on the rowdier trestle-table, we started off with double Carcassonne.  Moi, I got to play a bit of Carcassonne for the first time ever!  I really can see the appeal and came an acceptable Third.  This might have to be something I add to my own collection....

Play progressed to an amusing round of Yes or No! where, as always, we found it is in fact much much easier to use the words yes and no than you would expect.  Even when you are trying not to.  The group to our side moved on to Frank's Zoo which, I was told, consisted of animal cards weighted by whether they showed prey or predator.  Obviously, the lion was the most powerful - you get the gist etc...

My memory starts to fail me at this point.  This is often a problem, what with BBGG being held in a pub and all. We...played....Boggle?

There definitely was some card playing though.  I instigated a bit of Slam (you might know it as Speed) with some other players although we quickly realised that I couldn't actually remember the rules properly.

Can you?  You have half the pack each, 4 cards in the middle, you build up and down, then slam the smallest pile...something like that?  If you know, please tell me or come along and reteach me.  I loves that game!

See you all on the 20th!

Sunday, 26 February 2012

BBGG10 - Toothsome and compact.

When I walked into the pub this time, I thought I'd got the day wrong.  Where were you all?!  We concluded that you were all flipping pancakes.

I hesitated for a moment, slightly thrown.  I was already feeling unwell and had barely made it down myself.  Then Andrew waved merrily at me and I found my tribe!

As the title says, this week's meeting was...compact, shall we say.  But do you know what? It was still really lovely and possibly even more fun as we all got to concentrate on each other.  Moreover, I can actually dedicate a little more detail to what we played as it was less distracting!

I got down about 8pm, having dithered at home deciding if I was too unwell or not and found two games going.

I joined the twosome playing Set - a pattern-spotting game that put me strongly in mind of an IQ test.  You have cards with a variety of features; three colours, three shapes, either 1, 2 or 3 shapes per card and three different fills (empty, lined, block).

To make a set, you have to pick out three that fulfill two criteria.  Each group of features must be either all the same or all different.

So cards with three green squiggles that are all block colour are fine.  But so are three, green squiggles with one empty, one lined and one block.  Three cards with two empty diamonds a piece sounds good but not if one is purple and the other two are red.

Do you see where I'm going with this?

Just to make it a bit more challenging, there is a rule that if you impulsively yell 'Set' and the cards aren't a set, you lose a point.  (PS You make points from the sets you find).

I absolutely loved this game because I was really good at it (as one tends to).

Next, we all came together for a bit of Boggle - I totally frocked my first go up by forgetting that the letters had to touch each other to be used.  However, it was a welcome to change to play something wordy - I know we play Scrabble occasionally but so much of what we play is strategy, trivia or territorial.

Again, lots of fun and yours truly came in at a respectable gentleladies' third place.

From here on, things get rather silly.  The adorably Polly and Rich turned up and they always turn the silly up a notch.   We were all a couple of pints in too and the rules went out the window a bit.

We started playing Jenga.

Then we played Stone-Jenge.

Then Diago-Jenga...

Which quickly became Anarcha-Jenga.

Then we made an amazing cantilevered, 5 storey dogleg pattern that stood up by itself mostly.

Then it fell over and we squealed with joy.

Then we moved on to a bit of trivia.  We've been playing Mental Floss on and off of late.  My copy of Articulate is great and all but we're all too familiar with the Q&As (must buy new set of cards....anyone got another set of cards?).

That was delicious fun as memory's a bit ale-hazy at this point so I can't remember who won or anything but I know we had a great time.

We closed things down around 11-ish and all pottered off into the night.

A wonderful meet; put me right back in mind of our early days (did you know we've been going for about 5 months now?)

With game-y love and snuggles

S x

PS See you on the 6th!

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Where can we get one of these?!

What a good doggie!  I think we need to find one.  Any BBGG-ers pets' out there that could rise to the occasion? 

Thursday, 16 February 2012

BBGG9 - A relaxed affair.

Hello, my dears!

I come to report on the 8th instance of the Bath Board Games Group - it was a good evening and a quiet but productive one.

The Bell had kindly gotten out their big table again and I arrived to find some familiar faces and some new faces as well! We had our habitual Jenga warm-up and then the evening proper started with a threesome of games; The Three Commandments, Dominion and Domain.

I was playing The Three Commandments on the bigger table.  This is a really wonderful pattern-solving game.  The theme is that of a High Priestess and her minions, setting up and carrying out a mystic ritual with a patterned board and 'artifacts' (small bits of wood you move around).
This isn't actually our board.  I forgot to take photos, boooo!

There are behaviour cards and movement cards that detail all kinds of things from the mundane (the player uses their right hand to move the artifact) to the unlikely (the player strokes the High Priestess with their artifact).  The HP is dealt 4 cards and decides if these actions or behaviours will be good or bad.  Doing something good earns you karma; doing something bad loses you karma.

You are told how many points you scored and the HP places a red counter in front of cards to indicate if it was due to good or bad action or behaviours.  The fun part is dissecting your move with everyone, trying to work out what it was you did to score!

If no-one scores any karma at all, this is a strike out for the HP (something I became painfully familiar with).  4 strikes and the HP is run out of town and everyone but they score a whopping 20 points.

Meanwhile, a smaller group played Dominion, a deck-building card game with elements of trading won by our resident business-woman.  I pottered over at one point and was told it was really hard but still great fun.  They certainly all looked like they were concentrating whenever I looked over!

To my left, 3 of us played Domain, a territory-building game that involved a lot of walls being built and little plastic knights moving around.  Again, much quiet and intense concentration coming from that part of the table; I was assured it enjoyable, however.

After the trauma of thoroughly losing at The Three Commandments due to being a shite High Priestess, I shifted gear and joined a very silly game of Cranium.  To my amusement, I found we had to do things like draw with our eyes shut, work out anagrams, hum tunes and do impressions of famous people.  It was fun although I found the game mechanics a little arduous.  It tries to cram a lot in.

Others played the ever-loved Ticket To Ride, I was involved in a bit of Blokus (and won the second game which assuaged my pride) and there was also a sort of city-management/trading game called Notre Dame at the back.

Folks started to drift off around 11 and the last of us discussed upcoming meets and how Bath Gaming Guild can integrate with us.

If I remember correctly, they will always be joining us for the first Tuesday of every month (until June, when our schedules diverge) due to booking problems  for that day at the St. James' Wine Vaults.

It was another great evening with a diverse and enthusiastic amount of gaming.  As always I look forward to the next.  See you on the 21st!

Monday, 6 February 2012

BBGG8 - I was with you in spirit, honest.

Tragically, I didn't get to join you all for this night - I was not feeling too good.  I hear there was still a good turnout with a great deal of our dear favourites, Carcassonne and Shithead, going down.

I am raring to go for the next meet, however, and I look forward to seeing your happy faces again!

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

BBGG7 - What a night...

Everyone here is a BBGG-er
Last meeting was massive - a grand total of 27.  I would say I can't believe how many people turned up but I organise these things so I can.  However, it was still surprising and still gratifying.

Welcome to all our new faces - lots of you from Couchsurfing, a few from Gumtree and a hefty injection from Bath Gaming  Guild.  Very happy to meet you all and you are all welcome to return, on account of being fun, happy people.

It was so big that I can't do my usual rundown of what we played - I can name-drop but I can't give too many details.

Also, I've lost my bit of paper that told me the majority of games played. Please, please comment/email me and let me know so I can add them in.

I can tell you that we have three games of Settlers of Catan going on at once.

Jenga moved around from table to table as new people joined and warmed up... Some of Bath Gaming Guild kicked off with something strategy-based that took most of the evening.

A game of Mancala went on across the way as did a very amusing game of Yes or No! which sounds simple but is surprisingly hard; players recieve a set of questions that they must answer without saying yes or no.  The questions are tailored to increase the difficulty of how you answer and it is quite amazing how trained you are to tag yes or no in front of your answers.

A game of Mental Floss was present too - this was fun insofar as it was trivia-based and I think, to an extent, it had the edge on Trivial Pursuit.  The way the question mechanics worked was more variable and the trivia was more wide-ranging.  It was also better than Articulate insofar as it was less 90s/Anglocentric which always a problem for our non-English players or those under...I don't know....22.  Describing who Des Lynam is is no mean feat, I can tell you.

Multiple Catan
The last game I was involved in was Small Worlds, another landgrab/strategy based game.  You played a variety of races all competing for a land too small for the amount vying and had the interesting feature of the potential to fairly quickly cycle through races.  The more land owned, the more victory points, and should you abandon a race in favour of another, that race's owned land would continue to benefit you until taken over.  By this point, I was just straight-up drunk and my tactics weren't quite as sparkling as they could have been but I still really enjoyed having a playthrough.

I noticed the Couchsurfing contingent playing a real variety of games, some card-based, some involving little plastic doohickeys: further information would be grateful received.

The night tied up at closing time as usual with a good deal of us still there.  Bath Gaming Guild enjoyed joining us and we enjoyed having them.  We had a talk about how to integrate and the consensus for the moment is just 'see how it goes'.

They meet every Tuesday at the St. James' Wine Vaults (as long as the room-booking goes alright) so for the game-hungry amongst us, an opportunity to play every week with a choice of locations awaits you!

You can get more info and contact the Guild here - they're really friendly and play a really wide range of games.

Next BBGG meet on the 24th January, see you all there!

Saturday, 7 January 2012

BBGG6 And a Happy New Year to you all...

Happy 2012, my dears and welcome back!

As we all know, we meet next Tuesday on the 10th to resume our pints and points.  Am looking forward to this very much and expect to see some new faces too.

Have been getting myself into a right old slack state and am here to rectify this.  Without further ado, BBGG 6....


The 20th December was a lovely meet.  I, for one, was full of the joys of Christmas and the pub had a lovely festive air to it.  Our group was a little smaller in number than usual but I was touched that so many of you came despite us being so close to the holidays.

The Bell were strangely eager to put up our trestle table for us and we chose to pop it on the raised dais bit by the door which felt kind of awesome (although my internal teenager was embarrassed at being so prominent).

This week's games were strongly word-based although we got out the Jenga for a warm-up as per usual.

Prior to getting started, we were very much distracted by Phoebe's darling Christmas gift to us all of some high-quality fudge - she is an absolute sweetheart and the fudge was like none other I have ever tasted, from our very own Fudge Kitchen down by the Abbey.  Very, very, very nice.

So, on a sugar-high and with happy tummies, we got on with our tasks at hand.

The group to my right played Bali.  I was not privileged to join, being too distracted by fudge, but they seemed to enjoy it.  It consists of lettered cards being played a bit like Solitaire - It was reported that you were also allowed to take other people's stacks.  They played through and didn't seem too sad to have done so.  My group faffed around with fudge and sideways-5-block Jenga/balance-the-Jenga-in-unrealistic-patterns for a while but got onto Kan-U-Go after a while.  This is basically Scrabble without the board, in card form, with a limit of 3-letter words, although we bent the rules to move up to 4 letters...It was alright.  No great shakes but didn't come away feeling like I'd lost 20 minutes of my life either.   The other group moved onto Syllabex which again, is Scrabble-esque but involves forming words out of 3-letter syllables.  They reported this to be fairly enjoyable but just not too great in terms of game mechanics.

We played a few rounds of that great favourite, Articulate and also went through a stocking-filler type game where you chose the right definition for a word from four possibilities.  We weren't really gaming per se at this point but we still had the element of competition.  I always like a bit of learning thrown into any situation and found the unknown words to be passably amusing.

The night came a close here - somehow 11pm had swung around quietly and we went our separate ways off into the night, full of fudge and pints and points.  It was a good evening.  Plenty of laughter and good feeling, as always, and it felt like a comfortable, warming and reassuring end to BBGG's 2011.

I sincerely look forward to seeing you all on the 10th January, hearing what Father Christmas brought you and symbolically melting that seasonal hoarfrost on our eager card-picking, dice-shaking, question-choosing fingers.

With a bit of  fashionably-late, soppy and seasonal love - Merry Christmas and Happy New Year...

Sarah xx