Game Moments that Made a Lasting Memory
After a game night, I might go to bed thinking of the games played and how it all shook out. I usually don’t think of a particular game session a whole lot beyond that. Sometimes though, a group of people playing a game leaves a lasting impression. Laughs are had, names are called and songs are sung. Yes, songs are often sung.
That one time I dug up the entire wasteland to find a thing
“The Big Dig” contract in Wasteland Express Delivery Service requires players to purchase an excavator mod for their truck and go digging around for ancient buried tech. I felt I was on my way to victory early on in this particular game, but finding a treasure in a wasteland is kinda like finding a needle in a… well, it’s kinda like finding a treasure in a Wasteland. Some players might find it frustrating to be spending turn after turn driving, digging and turning up nothing but dirt as your opponents make visible progress around you. But, this is the Wasteland. This game tells stories. It’s hilarious that some deranged psychopath (me) is furiously driving around a hell hole in a scrappy school bus attempting to find buried treasure. Well worth the loss.
the Resistance – Avalon
A few years ago, when our group began trying to regularly schedule game nights, Avalon got a lot of play. It was a hit with our game group. We played it often enough that we kinda broke it. As a group of friends, our tells were becoming obvious and it lost some of its luster. For example, one of our friends would begin giggling like a kid in church who is trying not to laugh, the instant he found out he was Merlin. He began sweating profusely and sometimes seemed on the verge of a bizarre laugh-driven panic attack. Kinda like those weasel goons in Who Framed Roger Rabbit?, the ones who can laugh themselves to death. It was sometimes funny. It was sometimes awkward. It became a thing. Oh, who am I kidding? It was me. I was Merlin. I’m always Merlin.
Pirate Voices lead to sore throats
Racing pirate ships around Jamaica while collecting treasure and gold and fighting your fellow pirates every step of the way is already a lot of fun and garners a lot of laughs. What could make it more fun? Well, the last time our game group played, everyone slowly began to take on thick “pirate” accents. These accents nebulously flowed from French to Irish to Scottish to my home dialect of Newfounese, as we playfully explored what pirates might have actually sounded like. What I thought would last just a couple of minutes, continued for the duration of the hour + game, to the point that some of our throats were sore by the end. I swear, there was very little drinking involved, although if someone walked in as we were singing “Grog and Lemons” to the tune of Spongebob Squarepants, they may have thought otherwise.
The very first time I played Cosmic Encounter with a game group, someone played as The Filch alien race. The Filch have this amazing ability, after encounter cards are played, the Filch player can take one of those cards and put it into their hand. So, every time someone played a high numbered encounter card, the Filch would nab it. In response, someone at the table uttered, “Fluffing Filch.” This line was jokingly stated numerous times throughout the night (only no one said fluffing). It felt as if there was nothing we could do about the Filch winning the game. We knew the Filch’s hand was loaded with high attack cards and our efforts to negotiate with this wily alien were all for naught. The unflattering name of “The Filch” followed around this particular player for a while and it still comes up every now and again in certain situations. Taking the last cookie from a food tray? “Fluffing Filch.” Inadvertently sit in someone else’s seat at a dinner party? You guessed it, “Fluffing Filch.” This was one of the first times that the narrative of a game session lingered on long after the game ended and really showed me how board games are capable of creating lasting memories.
Thanks for taking one for the team Filch.
Near and Far
The Sanctimonious Political Campaign of Lobot the Robot
Nowhere in the rule book for Near and Far does it suggest roleplaying your chosen characters. The game is essentially a Euro-style “points salad” game, albeit it has quite a bit of immersive storytelling elements included within. For whatever reason, I chose the robot as my character for our game group’s campaign. That Robot became Lobot. Lobot, for some reason, was a politician. A politician who was campaigning across the world of Near and Far in an effort to do good deeds and rally voters around his cause. I would often chant “Lobot for Mayor” (for whatever reason it was a mayoral campaign) as I helped fight off The Red King or helped some citizen with their toils and troubles. It was all in good fun of course but the roleplaying carried on outside of game time to the point that Lobot and another character named Cakey or Cuckoo (I can never quite remember her name), were rap battling over google hangouts. That happened. Lobot eventually won the campaign and will forever be near and dear to my heart. Lobot for mayor in 2020.