While Blogger is online, I'll get in a few comments on games I've played the last couple of sessions -
King of the Beasts - Dave put it best as part of Peter's effort to play every pubished game once.
Tempus - The new Wallace game that is suffering (or not, depending upon how hard you bit) from hype backlash. It's not a civ-building game, not really, but it is one of Wallace's cleanest titles and a lot of fun. You will play at least one or two rules wrong in your first playing, no matter how hard you try or how well you prepare. Two hours for a first game is optimistic, but realistic for experienced players. Finally, a Wallace game we can play at weeknight sessions! Looks to scale well with 3-5, too.
Wyatt Earp - This game has worn out it's welcome with me. I was badly burned by late game luck of the draw, and I really hate Wild West themes. Saboteur will be my first choice for "Summoning" games after this.
Blue Moon City - Light, but fun right up to the point you realize someone else will win and there's not a thing you can do about it. To be honest, a little too much theme for a game this fluffy.
You know, there was another game we played with five people, that someone thought Jay wanted to play (but didn't, at least all that badly), but I am completely unable to remember what it was. I really hate getting old.
And, finally -
Chuck and I played what might have been our last game of Shifting Sands, the North African Theater CDG from MMP. I've given good reviews of this game in three previous reports, but I'm beginning to think that this game hinges almost completely on how the card draws flesh out. In this case, I couldn't get the Iraqi Revolt to help bleed off forces to the Near East, didn't get the card I desperately need to take Malta until the final hand (by which time I'd lost), and in general felt that the game was playing me more than I was playing it. Just the fact that the Air Support card I needed gave Chuck the win a turn early is enough to more or less damn this game for me. It's fun, but not for six hours to see what card comes up next.
What a shame, I was really excited to see this game come out, but the utter lack of any reason to press forward on the offensive in Libya/Egypt until the end game and the lack of tension wrt whether to play cards for events or not (you almost always do if at all possible) make this a poor cousin to Barbarossa to Berlin. At least with Twilight Struggle there may be a way to fix the "I just drew six scoring cards that will kill me this turn" syndrome. Sigh.
Somebody help me out with the mystery game, huh?