Thursday, October 28, 2021

Gamehole Con 2021 - Day 4

Day four was our semi-relaxed day.  The plan was for us to finish up ramen and the rest of the group to finish up Indian food and meet up at the Air BnB for some outside-of-GHC gaming.

E and I started the day by doing a long stint at True Dungeon "Weird Magic".  I think I've mentioned it in the past, but True Dungeon is a bit like a fantasy themed distributed escape room with a running story and experience and equipment.  Equipment is random depending on the tokens you get.  As a n00b this can be tough because if you land on an experienced team they'll want to try fighting at a higher difficulty to pull more treasure.  On the flip side, they can loan you equipment that levels you up, gets you more treasure, etc.  That was the kind of team we were on this time.  They did a great job of explaining it better than any team we've ever been with before. They even explained the "ghost" to us that no one explained last year as a friend who was ill and couldn't attend, but they could run him through on his pre-purchased ticket and use his tokens so he'd collect treasure.  

One of the guys amusingly explained to us that there were limits to ghosts as some obsessives had taken to running a dungeon with themselves and nine ghosts for a while to maximize their treasure [at an expense].  No photos because I don't want to ruin it for anyone.  The surprise of the story and the rooms is most of the fun.  This year's theme was sort of a cyberpunk witch  thing.  We did fail at one room where we had to align colored blocks by changing their colors in a machine with glowing lights on top....boom.  Damage.  But at least it doesn't eliminate you from the game.  E loves playing the thief...each class does something slightly different.  Pushes hockey pucks for damage, traces shapes to find clues or treasure, identifies symbols [oof, memorization] to cast spells, throws two hockey pucks, and more.

We played Space Invaders with Kane.  It's a branded version of Flip Ships, so it wasn't new for me or for E.  Also, a very fast game so we finished up early and found some lunch.  This is a GREAT game if you're looking for something party friendly.  Ms Klenko was there as well - just out of frame.

Some vendor hall photos.  E threatening me with a LARP-ing weapon. 

Kitsune, for sale.  A game E, and Klund, and I hate above almost all others.  We had a HORRIBLE time playing it several years ago and I made it worse by knowingly forcing an extra hour of play when it could have been over just to troll E and Klund.

I had to ask Apong if this was racist.

I own a Xeno game - an expansion for Axis and Allies - but this is downright weird.

Eryn came away with some loot.  Breast cancer suppotive Ticket to Ride trains, as well as Ticket to Ride Europe and Ticket to Ride India from the scratch and dent which was a holiday ask, so it was like Christmas early.  A cool pin, dice [including some not shown here that bend light like fiber optic cables - enough so that I initially thought they glowed], and a few bonus cards from Kane for Fuse.

Celtica was our last on-site game of the day.  Very old Ravensburger game with an ironic puzzle component where you build amulets.  Get a handful of colored wizard cards.  Move the wizards on the board any spaces that are all or part of your cards.  Some spaces good.  Some bad. Some draw another card.  We played two games and play was much better on the second game once players started taking some chances to score an extra card in a color to get past a bad space. It won a 2007 children's game award, so that'll give you an idea of the complexity.

Beer, local, spotted cow. I think Commuter was the other option in the gaming hall.  It might have been cheaper to keep a whole six pack in the car, but I saved most of my drinking for the AirBnB.  I don't like feeling tired while gaming with new players.  The little spider dude was already at our table.  I think that might be Eryn's third smoothie in three days.  The coffee/ice cream/smoothie stand is probably the best sustenance at Gamehole Con.

Back side of the beholder.  I sent it to my wife and channeled Michael Scott's "That's what she said."  Childish, but I felt it was a particularly fun use of the meme.

We had dinner at Morris Ramen.  Apong went a few times after we gave him the name/location.  Maybe my favorite place in Madison.  Young crowd and absolutely wonderful food.  We had the spicy ramen.  Can't recommend it enough.

Back at the house, we sat down for a five person game of Power Grid.  That might be the best number.  Boardgamegeek does say 4-5.  Apong added that red wall across the bottom to make sure we didn't stray into unusable German territory.

Klund won this one with some spirited bidding on ecologically responsible power.

We played minimal hands of The Crew, but enough to understand the basics.  The goal is to have different players take different tricks, in specific orders, etc, cooperatively.  I'm not sure I can play with just my wife, but if we have the neighbors over I'll get it out as it gets incrementally [hand to hand] more difficult over fifty round and the general idea is easy enough to pick up in a few minutes.

And we finished off the night with a game of Cosmic Factory as E now has their own.  We reserved a few minutes for packing and cleaning so that 8:00 a.m. games didn't mean getting up at 6:30 to check out. I think I took home about 80 percent of the food I brought with me.  Definitely overkill.

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