Johanna was having a movie night with her friend, so I invited guys over for a friendly game of Age of Steam. To advance my mission to play all the maps, I chose to use the German map — despite one of the players being a newbie.
It was a tough fight. I thought Berlin would be a good place to start and built my empire in that corner of the map. Everybody else seemed to start on the southwestern side, which indeed has more cities. That left me quite alone, which of course suited me. However, I took too many shares in the beginning, which made my financial situation pretty ugly.
It’s an interesting map. The very expensive foreign terminals were used, somewhat, and we even saw a connection to Wien on the last turn. I got lots of peace and quiet in my corner while the others were fighting a lot, but in the end my network wasn’t good enough and the production got quiet and I failed to deliver longer routes. Too bad.
Last auction was particularly bad: I was going to bid all my money to get first to get Locomotive and two six-link deliveries, but Robert screwed me by bidding 14 before me (I had 13, total). I would’ve bid that even to become second, but I couldn’t and got last. Ilari took the Locomotive before me and all I could deliver was one five and one four. That did it for me. Even a second five-link delivery would’ve put me on tied first place, it was that tight.
Who won? The newbie, of course. It has to be said that Olli M. is definitely one of the brighter guys in our club, so it wasn’t like he was totally clueless. My score was ruined by 13 issued shares. Olli had one income less than I, but only ten shares. Well, it was a good match, lots of excitement and tension. Age of Steam is definitely one of the best games I have; too bad it takes so much time I don’t get to play it as often as I would like to.
After that we tried my prototype. It’s not a four-player game, that much is obvious now. It should work if you play it in pairs like the two-player game, but with four individual players the system just doesn’t work. Well, it’s good to know that.
To wrap up the evening, we played a quick game of Mogul. Once again I got rid of my cards too soon and spent the rest of the game doing nothing. Olli amassed a huge amount of cards and despite being penniless all the time (and taking, like, ten loans — the bank ended up with just three coins) got to sell most of them to secure a clear victory. As I said, he’s a bright guy…