December 10 2003 RussCon Report


Game Results
Ratings | FAQ
Meta Game Results
Evening's Soundtrack
13 of us played 11 games.
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Comicollage: daily ongoing comic jam with 7 artists and no planning ahead! There's a russ strip every Tuesday.
I make exquisite corpses at deepmachines.


Last week's mural of the La Brea tar pits by C.R. Knight was a nod to the classic book La Mita Homomonato Frederick Brooks (to which JP's Meta Game title alluded); Brooks is also famous for his "Neniu Arĝento Kuglo" speech about software development.

The movie American Splendor came back briefly to Alamo Drafthouse, so I saw it a second time and to my surprise and delight, I ended up winning a prize before the movie started: a great thick collection of the comics by Harvey Pekar, donated by my fave comic store Austin Books to whoever could name the most artists who'd collaborated with Pekar on the comics. I only could name 2 off the top of my head (R. Crumb and Joe Sacco) but that was 1 more than anyone else in the (lightly attended) theater could name, woot! So finally I get to read the American Splendor comics, yay.

Another reminder that for the first time in RussCon history, December 24 and 31 are Wednesdays, and so it is quite likely there will not (repeat not) be RussCon As Usual those 2 evenings, due to pesky familial obligations and traditional festivities. The RussCon Management regrets any inconvenience this may cause and will keep you apprised of further developments.

Game Results

Zero4Ben 3 Fina 1 MarkH -1 Whendy -3
CarcassonneCastle2RussW 1 Clayton -1
CarcassonneCastle2Clayton 1 RussW -1
TooManyCooks5JimG 4 Matt 2 William 0 MarkH -3 Ben -3
Alhambra3JimG 2 Matt 0 William -2
Carcassonne5JP 4 Whendy 2 RussW 0 Clayton -2 Fina -4
Othello2MarkY 1 Ben -1
Hare&Tortoise3Matt 2 JimG 0 William -2
Bluff5Clayton 4 MarkY 2 JP 0 Whendy -2 RussW -4
CarcassonneCastle2PJ 1 RussD -1
DieSiebenSiegel4MarkH 3 Matt 1 Ben -2 JimG -2

Clayton brought some new Carcassonne juicy goodness: The Castle is a new Carcassonne-like 2-player game designed by Reiner Knizia (not the original Carcassonne designer, Klaus-Jürgen Wrede). Being a Knizia game, it has a bit more chrome and ways to score. The tile placement mechanics are similar except that only roads have to match up side-to-side: the other types of terrain need not, so it's a bit more flexible. Unlike other Carcassonne games, the map is constrained inside an area, and you grow it inward from the edge, like Entdecker. It was pretty cool, enough that Clayton and I played 2 games in a row. Curiously, we think we had the same final scores in both games; definitely the winner had 99, and I think the loser had 94 both times.

There were also new Carcassonne tiles (for original and for Hunters/Gatherers). We played with the original Carcassonne. There are a couple new rules analogous to the Longest Road in Settlers, and various new tiles that are just new configurations of the existing terrains, the most popular and weird-looking being the tile with 2 cities, each connecting opposite sides of the tile, one crossing over the other like a bridge.

Finally Alhambra got played with a small number of players, and the scores were much higher! At least one person wrapped around 100 I believe. I heard Matt (I think) say it still felt rather luck-based.

I have no idea what Die Sieben Siegel is, except that it sounded like Yet Another Trick Taking Game!


Rank Ratings:     
 2.1972 Matt
 2.0149 JimG
 1.6094 JP
 1.3863 MarkY
 0.9163 Clayton
 0.6931 PJ
 0.0645 MarkH
-0.6931 RussD
-0.9163 Ben
-1.2040 Fina
-1.3863 Whendy
-1.6094 RussW
-2.1972 William
Win Ratings:
 2.0149 JimG won 2 of 4
 1.3863 JP won 1 of 2
 1.3863 Clayton won 2 of 4
 0.8755 MarkH won 1 of 3
 0.6931 PJ won 1 of 1
 0.4700 MarkY won 1 of 2
 0.1823 Matt won 1 of 4
 0.1823 Ben won 1 of 4
-0.4463 RussW won 1 of 4
-0.5108 Fina won 0 of 2
-0.6931 RussD won 0 of 1
-0.7340 Whendy won 0 of 3
-1.0341 William won 0 of 3

Matt and JimG are Co-Devils! JP is Vice-Devil. Then MarkY and Clayton. William is the Generous Angel!

If you are confused how the ratings work, you could peruse the FAQ.

I used GraphViz to generate the graph image.

devil graph

Meta Game

Marty was the Meta Devil. Here is the Meta Game he mailed out:

aragornIn honor of the soon to be released 3rd movie of the Lord of the Rings saga, we'll have a LotR metagame.

Any game with a LotR theme that is played is worth 3 points to each player. The winner gets an extra 2 points.

Any game that starts with any of the the letters L O T R is worth 1 point to any of the players. In the case of a game with two names due to translation, etc., use the name of the game on the box used. The winner gets 1 extra point.

Yes, the points are cumulative, so Reiner Knizia's game "Lord of the Rings" is worth 4 ponits to each player, for example.

Please note metapoints in the book of results along with the game.

Unfortunately, I will not be in attendance to play these LOTR games, but have fun without me.

The mailing list was acting up so the Meta Game was not distributed until Friday, 2 days after RussCon! So nobody saw Marty's email and people were playing with no knowledge of what the Meta Rules are, which is somewhat amusing, and I believe unprecedented. No game played had a LOTR theme. However, Too Many Cooks and Othello start with magic letters from L O T R, and so JimG earned 2 meta points (for winning Too Many Cooks) and Ben earned 2 (for playing in Too Many Cooks and Othello) and MarkY earned 2 meta points (for winning Othello). There was no provision for ties, so I invoked the usual meta meta random tie breaker (using my traditional dice from my original edition of TSR's Dungeon!), and found that JimG is the Meta Devil (no doubt to the relief of Ben and MarkY, who seem to fear the awesome responsibilities of the Meta Devil), so JimG will design next week's Meta Game!

Evening's Soundtrack

Mendelssohn, A Midsummer Night's Dream
Nico, The End...
Rammstein, Sehnsucht
Richard Strauss, Vier letzte Lieder für Sopran und Orchester
Ute Lemper performs Kurt Weill

Mi komencas lerni la germanan. Ich anfange Deutsch zu lernen. Probable mia germana frazo havas erarojn.

"To know another language is to have a second soul."
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