I gave a few of the games I was impressed with a second play today and
remain impressed with Mauer Bauer and Blue Moon City and like Fiji
even more upon a second play. Of the new games I played, there were a
couple of good fillers like Jericho and John Silver. California was
more fun with three than it was with five but not radically so.
I also spent a chunk of time this afternoon playing games as a member
of the jury for "Game of the Afternoon", an award given for the first
time at last year's Gathering and done again this year. Participants
were designer Friedemann Friese, Andrea Meyer and James Miller. This
year, Friedemann's dexterity game "Crash Test Bunnies" took the award.
Next year, more designers will be added to the competition. I didn't
get a chance to ask Friedemann if he minds it being discussed, so I
won't say anything further now. Rick Thornquist will probably write
about it too.
The only new game I played today that raised above the "very
favorable" threshhold was Nicht der Magier, a pseudo-dexterity game
designed to be played in the dark (with some dark and some
glow-in-the-dark components) but that plays very well and very
tactically in the light.
I'm up to 53 plays for 39 different games with 47 different people. I
expect my overall play rate to drop as I start playing a few longer
games and doing some non-gaming activities as the weather turns nicer.