Board game club: Antike, Antike!

Board game club met last Sunday. It was a good meeting, with lots of people, some new faces and active gaming. After a warm-up game of Flix Mix (I’m still unbeaten in this game), we started a six-player Antike. That was one of my main wishes for the meeting, trying Antike with five or six.

It was very good. The game flew by and was over in about an hour. The six-player game was crowded, that’s for sure. I played the Arabs and failed to expand fast enough, being constricted to six cities for the most of the game. I was still fighting for victory, but was no match to Robert. I could’ve scored my sixth point with three more temples, but the seventh point would’ve been impossible.

Still, it was exciting and I really really enjoyed the game. It works really well with six, I wouldn’t hesitate to play it again. Later; I played a four-player game that featured temple sacking, which was interesting. Too bad we had to finish that one quite abruptly, as I had to hurry to catch a bus (which I missed). Antike is definitely the hottest game right now.

Another one I wanted to try was St. Petersburg with The Banquet expansion. The small expansion came with Spielbox magazine, which I simply had to order.

The expansion features few new cards. First of all, there are two more Potemkin villages (a cheaper one and more expensive one) and a worker upgrade, which upgrades only the Czar. The new Czar Superstar reduces the price of both buildings and aristocrats, which is quite nice an advantage.

Rest of the new cards are action cards. Some are in building deck, some are in the aristocrat deck and the rest are in the upgrade deck. You draw them and play on a later round. They’re free to play and don’t cost points in the end, but they do take one slot in hand. The cards have interesting effects and some of them are fairly strong.

Black market, for example, allows the player take a card from the discard pile. Thief gets to take the first turn on one round and Banquet doubles the rubles and victory points on a card for one round. So, pretty good, right? Of course you miss a chance to take another card, so they aren’t without a price.

I like the expansion. It gives some new life to the game. I don’t think I’ll play the game without the expansion anymore. Our match was quite interesting, but Erkka’s superior aristocrat collection was the key to victory this time, despite mine and Atro’s efforts.

Next up was Around the World in 80 Days, the clever little race game. I got left behind when we started from London, but caught up with the rest and then blazed ahead for the rest of the trip. Thanks to some good pairs, I didn’t even have to play bad cards to stay in the front of the pack. In the end I was first in London with just 69 days spent. Inari made it in 71 days, so there was some competition.

I think it’s a good game, but perhaps little light on decisions. I sold my copy yesterday, now I got to play it the third time. If my needs were different and more leaned towards light games, I’d be happy to keep it for further play, but in the other hand, I don’t think the game is special enough to keep on waiting until I have a kid that’s old enough to play it, but too young for meatier games.

It was already too long since my last game of Attribute. Once again I won, this time with a wide 6-point margin. I don’t know what’s with me and Attribute, but I’ve won all games but one, and that was in BSW with some German guys. If the match is in Finnish, I rule. Kick-ass game, that’s all I say!

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