Wednesday, February 22, 2012

power grid

"damnit, i'm in first/last place again!"
this evening i played a new board game called power grid with four of my coworkers. well, "played" might be a strong word. i think we spent probably 90% of our time figuring out the game/evaluating decisions/goofing off/stuffing ourselves with thai food and the remaining 10% actually making moves on the board. and we only wound up passing through phase 1 of the game. and took two and a half hours to get an outside observer, we probably looked like we were playing in slooooowwww mootttttioooonnnnnn.

yet despite the mollasses-like pace,  i still highly enjoyed learning to play power grid. let me tell ya - that game is intense. it's reminiscent of a cracked-out hybrid of settlers (get resources!), monopoly (fight over a map for desirable locations!), dominion (buy the most souped-up cards!), and risk (fuck everyone else over!). as such, there is a whole lot of math, planning, and mental optimization that has to go into each turn. the analytical, economically-minded half of my brain got a real treat. i also loved that the more you were winning the game, the more of a handicap you had/vice versa - it really made the game more of a toss-up and it made being in last place actually a viable strategy for victory, something i haven't seen in other games.

there are a couple of drawbacks: it takes a couple of hours to onboard (no pun intended) a first-time player, and a full game even with experienced players can take something like 3 to 4 hours to complete. allegedly.

power grid is a game not for the weak of heart, nor for the short of patience. i loved learning it, although now i want to play for real! i'm not sure when the next time i'll have three hours to spend playing a board game will be. i guess there's always retirement.

1 comment:

  1. play betrayal! i think you'd like it