Monday, March 9, 2009

Gaming weekend: North Star party games

The family and I were in Syracuse this weekend visiting my sister-in-law and her boyfriend. We picked up copies of Wits & Wagers and Sorry! Sliders at the Target. I had been somewhat shocked that none of our local Walmart stores carried Sliders, it being a mass-market game and all.

We spent lots of time playing board games during our visit, although the vast majority consisted of the two North Star party games in my collection.

Say Anything (3 plays)

We gave this one another try, and for the most part it was a lot of fun. The four of us took our answers a little less seriously than our group had on Friday night, and we did a great job of playing the game briskly. It is possible that Say Anything was more fun this time because the players knew each other a little more and could play off that fact to a greater extent. Perhaps the game can be just as fun with new friends, but we will have to wait and see.

Wits & Wagers (4 plays)

Though I did enjoy our plays of Say Anything, I had even more fun with Wits & Wagers! Instead of answering opinion questions like Say Anything, in Wits & Wagers players answer trivia questions. After everyone has written their guess on their personal dry-erase board, each player bets on which answer is closest to the correct one. I think I found this title to be more fun than the other because the winners of each question are determined by some definite answer and not just the opinion of the current player. Like Say Anything, Wits & Wagers needs to be fast paced to be fun, but this one plays quickly by design due to the 30-second timer used during each answer phase and each betting phase. We played this with four players, but I can see it being even more fun with a full complement of seven (or even more if you play teams).

Pandemic
(1 play)

Our play of Pandemic was one of the most tense I've played thus far. Perhaps 3/4 through the player deck we only had one cure and the blue disease was on the verge of overwhelming Europe completely. For a few nervous moments we felt the game was simply out of hand and victory was impossible. A few smart decisions and a heap of luck later, however, we emerged victorious, albeit with seven total outbreaks and a precious few cards remaining.

Sorry Sliders (3 plays?)

Although it wasn't the star of the weekend we did set up Sorry! Sliders and had some fun with it. I think it will be a very enjoyable game in the right circumstances, especially at a party featuring some alcohol. Sorry! Sliders seems to be a fast paced and well designed dexterity game, entertaining for children and adults alike.

Overall the weekend was lots of fun. I only wish we'd played more strategy games, as I'd brought both Dominion and El Grande. Maybe next time...

1 comment:

The Sister-in-Law said...

Yes - next time we will have to play even more board games. Sorry Sliders will always get the best of me I fear, so onward with more strategy!