Monday, June 15, 2015

Origins Gaming Convention, Part 4

We signed up for a session of Arkham Horror on Friday, but our event was canceled due to the fragile constitution of the game master (mistress?) who, we were informed, was in the ladies worshiping at the porcelain altar.  Too much holy water the night before, I'd guess.

Event Ticket
Note that the event ticket shows the name of the event, the day and time for the event, but as for the location - forget it.  You have to track down the location for yourself, which Mike did.  I'm told that a key individual quit last year just before the convention started, which means that GAMA had one year to get their act together and couldn't manage to pull it off.  Good job, GAMA.

Canceled Due To Lack Of GM
Note that Mister Big Wheel is using the British spelling for the word 'canceled'.  I prefer the American spelling, mainly because I'm living in the United States.  I suppose it could be argued that the idiot doesn't know how to spell, but that's almost impossible seeing as how he's in management and his team are all university students.  I need a tag for sarcasm.

On my way around the dealer show, I happened across the booth for Mayday Games, who were touting their new game, Viceroy.  Viceroy is not for sale, as it's due to be released in August at Gen Con.  When I asked if they would demo the game, there was a quick huddle, then I was informed that they would demo the game if I could provide the players.  As it happened, I knew of three gamers with nothing better to do.

New Game
As it turned out, Viceroy is an outstanding game. It took us about an hour to learn and play the game to completion. Setup time is minimal, and the play is mechanically easy and done at a fairly fast pace.

Viceroy Setup
The Winner!
As you can see, Mike won the game rather neatly.  Dave beat me by one point, but I'm told that 59 is a respectable score, especially for someone who is unfamiliar with the game.  All I can say is that this was a test round, and Dave didn't watch Mike closely enough.

Here's the board at the end of the game.

My Pyramid

The Winning Pyramid
Cards are turned over four at a time and players bid on the card of their choice, using tokens as payment for the card - if they win the bid.  Cards are assembled into a pyramid structure, which determines how points are scored.  Players can contest each other for a certain card, thus preventing another player from scoring points.  This is an oversimplification of the rules, as there are a myriad number of ways to score victory points in Viceroy.

Our game master for the session was none other than Seth Hiatt, owner and founder of Mayday Games.  Seth is an affable, high energy man who is used to dealing successfully with too many irons in the fire.  By his own admission it had been some time since he'd had to teach Viceroy to anyone, so his explanation was frequently punctuated with "before you do that" caveats.  He also made a few observations about strategy during the game, which was a help to us.

Seth Hiatt, Game Master
We had a great time playing Viceroy, and were so impressed with the game that both Dave and Mike each bought a copy in advance of the release in August.  Their games will ship when Gen Con opens.

The playing time for Viceroy is around 45 minutes, and the optimal number of players is three.  Although we didn't try the game with two players, it was easy to see what would likely happen.  Four players is the maximum number allowed, and would provide for more conflict between opponents.

The design for Viceroy is solid, and I recommend it to anyone searching for a board game that is not in the same category as Monopoly.




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