Seattle Cosmic Game Night

(Saturday, 31 March 2001)

The First Night at Dave and Kathy's

(The Night of Two Tims, and Many Happy Returns)

by Ron Hale-Evans

Seattle Cosmic met for the first time in its new regular meeting place, the lovely new house of Dave Adams and Kathy Kizer. Present were Dave and Kathy (of course), Marty and Ron Hale-Evans (that's me), Mark Purtill, John Braley, Kisa Gryphon, Greg Melhuish, Crystal Martin, New Guy Tim Leggett, and Newish Guy Tim Higgins.

We split into two groups. Mark, Kisa, John, and I played Cosmic Encounter, since it was a Cosmic Night. Dave, Kathy, Marty, Greg, Crystal, and Tim Higgins decided to play Settlers of Catan, with the 5-6 player and "Cities and Knights" expansions.

That's not an Attack card and a big pile of Reinforcements Mark is laying on Ron -- this is just setup.

Marty and I both tend to find vanilla Settlers somewhat bland, but Marty later assured me that "Cities and Knights" made a big difference in the complexity and interest of gameplay.

Camera-guy Dave, why are you peeking at Greg's Settlers cards?

About this time, Dave's friend Tim Leggett arrived. He watched the Settlers game for a few minutes, then decided to settle in and observe our Cosmic game...

Cosmic Encounter in progress, with New Guy Tim Leggett observing (glasses, grey sweatshirt)

The Settlers game ground on. It's normally supposed to be a fast game, isn't it?

The Kathy of Catan

Despite what Kisa seems to be saying in the photo below, John pulled off a quick solo win in Cosmic as the Deuce-Mesmer. He was awarded a copy of Interstellar Pig, a juvenile science fiction novel by William Sleator. The connection? The eponymous board game of the novel bears more than a passing, indeed a suspicious, resemblance to Cosmic Encounter. Greg, Crystal, and Mark (who had been given the novel by someone else because it contained a pig) all agreed with me on this, Crystal and Greg vociferously.

Is William Sleator a Cosmic Encounter player? One day I will put up a page on this site outlining my Interstellar Pig/Cosmic Encounter theory. Watch this space.

Kisa: "You should all accept that I am going to win."

Meanwhile the Settlers game was not going well for Dave, Kathy, and Tim...

Wistfully, Dave considers his options, none of them good. Newish Guy Tim Higgins looks on (wistfully also).

Since the first Cosmic game had gone quickly, we decided to play a second one, with Tim Leggett joining us this time.

This game was fierce. At one point, John played the Wild Disease Flare, which meant everyone had to discard a whole bunch of cards and one of our powers apiece. It was worse than the Plague Edict, even worse than the Internet Edict called "Black Plague". "I really feel for you guys," said John the Empath-Cannibal (the only one of us left with two powers). John then decided not to be empathic after all, and used the Wild Connoisseur Flare to dump Empath and randomly pick Busybody (which is a weak power -- he was better off with his old power, and I don't think he ever used his new one).

Not that John had been a very empathic Cannibal anyway. Cannibal is an Internet power that lets you gobble up other players' tokens with which you share a base. After we lost a base or two, we learned not to ally with John (at least in offense).

Around about this point (10:30 or so), I felt a bit ill, so I excused myself to the bathroom. While I was gone, Dave released his pet dove, which is a good mimic and provided a laughtrack for the evening by laughing maniacally every few minutes. When I got back, I was instantly the tallest thing in the room, so it swooped down on my head, and kept returning after being shooed. I won't say I took it as a sign of divine favour, but it did make me feel better. So thanks, Dave, for flipping me your bird!

Yo ho ho! Ron prefers the dove of peace to the parrot of booty. (The dove likes Ron too.)

During my last few games of Cosmic, I had kept drawing lousy hands, so when one of the Flares I drew during setup was Philanthropist, a seemingly weak power that allows you to give away cards, I was delighted, because it meant I could draw a new hand periodically. Near the end of the game, I drew a War card, which wins against any Attack and loses to a Compromise. This was the sort of thing I had hoped for. I bitched and moaned, complaining I had crap in my new hand, so that John (my opponent) would not suss out my War card and play a Compromise. He gathered a bunch of defensive allies for the Last Battle, so I was pretty sure he was going to play a high Attack card if he could. I played the War card, John played an Attack, and I won solo.

Tim Leggett seemed really taken with Cosmic, and we hope he plays many more games with us.

Settlers was going quite well for Crystal and Greg, who both had 11 out of the 12 victory points needed. Had they but known, it was going quite well for Marty also...

Crystal and Greg, expert Settlers players, look very, very smug, about 29 seconds before Marty beats the crap out of them.

Suddenly Marty shouted, "I am the Queen of Catan!" and there was wild applause from the Settlers table. Marty had won the game.

Game night broke up at around 12:10 AM. For once, someone gave me and Marty a prize -- Kathy gave us some nice, sturdy storage boxes she and Dave had used in their move (thanks, Kathy). She remarked, "You know, game night is a really good incentive to clean up." Yes, but how will we clean our house now that we're no longer hosting game night?

We still have time to find out, because our apartment is now the backup location, and we're hosting again on April 7th.

Games played or discussed this week:

The Center for Ludic Synergy and Seattle Cosmic Game Night are now associates of Funagain Games. This means that 5% of your purchase there goes toward supporting us if you buy games via the following links or the Funagain logo at the bottom of the page.

Even if you don't want to buy the games, the Funagain pages often contain lengthy, useful game reviews.


Saturday, 7 April 2001, 7:00 PM at Ron and Marty's in Kent. Come play for fun and FABULOUS PRIZES!

Remember, game nights are every Saturday at 7:00 PM at Dave and Kathy's house in West Seattle. Please bring a snack or drink to share (cookies, chips, soda, juice, etc.).

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All photos on this page copyright © 2001 by Ron Hale-Evans except where otherwise noted.

Maintainer: Ron Hale-Evans, rwhe@ludism.org
Page last updated 5 April 2001.