Saturday, July 02, 2005

Car shopping and Houston Gamers meeting

I watched Alexis in the morning so Lee could go get a massage and test-drive a Subaru Forester she saw on the Auto Trader website. She liked it, so when she came back, I went for a spin, too. The Forester drives and handles well... I hope our mechanic likes it.

After that, I got Lee's car appraised at CarMax. I think it's worth about two grand more than they do. Oh, well.

Once I was done with the dealerships, I went down to the Houston Gamers meeting. I am getting pretty sick of this location, because it just doesn't do it for me. I have to drive on the beltway, then a long way down Westheimer, then park in a dilapidated lot in a shopping center being renovated. The game store's restroom, usually fairly awful, was totally out of order today. I can only guess how many gamers today went to the restaurant next door, took a whiz, and left. Admittedly, several gamers did end up eating dinner at that restaurant. I didn't, though.

The homeless guy with poor impulse control was there, too. I didn't end up at a table with him, somehow.

I had packed Jacob Marley, Esq., along with the necessary bits (a die, ~150 pennies, about 10 tokens in 6 colors, etc.), as well as a copy of Stocks & Bonds, an old stock market game purchased at a thrift shop. I gave this away to the first person who showed interest, just to get it out of my life. I have had it marked for trade on Boardgamegeek for a long time, and never heard anyone express any interest at all, plus it's worth about $5 on Ebay, thus not worth the effort.

I played Jump! with Kevin H. , Kevin N., and James Spurny, then learned Shadows Over Camelot with Maura, Michael D., Kevin B., and Doug (California Doug, not Big Bearded Doug). I didn't get a chance to play with Amy or Kevin's wife Debra, although I did say hi.

This is my third time to learn how to play Jump! over the last decade. I first played it way way back in the day, back at Helmut's place down in the center of Montrose.

Shadows Over Camelot I had been avoiding, but Maura convinced me to join the table. It's a co-operative game, sort of. All the players are knights trying to save Camelot from many, many impending dooms. Also, potentially one of them is a traitor, who can secretly jack things up. One, I hate the Lord of the Rings co-operative boardgame. Lord of the Rings plays you, not vice-versa. I hear if you spend another $80 on supplements, suddenly the $50 base game is good. I also hear that after about the 10th time you get kicked in the stomach, it starts feeling great.

Naturally, I ended up drawing the traitor card, and almost, almost, almost won the game by betraying the rest of the group. I'm still not sure what to think. Every turn, you either draw an Evil card, put out a siege engine to beseige Camelot, or take a point of damage. Then you get to do something Good, like drawing cards, or playing cards.

It took about two hours to learn and play, so once we were done, I handed off the copy of Stocks & Bonds. Since, you know, I needed to go find a bathroom.


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