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2004-12-15 RussCon Report


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18 of us played 13 games!

We did the first White Elephant gift exchange of this holiday season. (The second will occur in 3 weeks, on Wednesday 2005-01-05, so people will be able to jettison a lame Christmas gift they receive over the holidays.) There were some popular gifts that got stolen several times in the process: christmas music CDs, boxed trilogy of The Onion books, The Da Vinci Code, complete Monty Python scripts, etc. Perhaps the least desired gift was the plastic fishbowl with a few dozen plastic cockroaches in it. And then there was the indescribably odd Spanky the bondage penis plush doll (complete with unzipping head action), brought by Jeffles, won by JP... (I really regret that my camera batteries were dead!) At the request of several people, we let the first player take a final turn after everyone else; JP was that player, but he chose to keep Spanky!

There will be RussCon As Usual during the holidays, including 2004-12-22 and 2004-12-29.

Rob Corell and Wendy White are new parents of Sydney Valentine Corell. Congratulations!

Game Results

UndTschuess5Jeffles 4 JP 2 MarkH 0 Ben -2 Jerrie -4
ZirkusFlohcati3SarahM 2 Pauline 0 RussD -2
Transamerica5ToddG 4 Whendy -1 Jerrie -1 MarkH -1 Omar -1
Elfenland4Marty 3 Ben 1 Jeffles -1 JP -3
Attika4Tim 3 RussW -1 KevinU -1 Clayton -1
Can'tStop4RussD 3 Whendy -1 Pauline -1 MarkH -1
RicochetRobot4RussW 2 KevinU 2 Ben -1 Omar -3
Traumfabrik3Jeffles 2 Marty 0 Tim -2
Tichu2( Ben KevinU ) 1 ( JP Omar ) -1
EinfachGenial4RussW 3 William 1 Chad -1 SarahM -3
SaintPetersburg4Clayton 3 ToddG 1 SarahM -1 William -3
TooManyCooks3Jeffles 2 William 0 SarahM -2
Tayu2RussW 1 Whendy -1

A very suspenseful close game of Attika, hurray! 3 out of the 4 of us all came close to connecting shrines (I was the odd man out), and after various successful blockages, it came down to getting all the buildings out before the others. Tim got his last one out on the hex I would have gotten my last one out onto if I'd had another turn...

Kevin had just driven back from a climbing trip in Colorado and said he was rather sleep-deprived and tired, but apparently such a mental state helps him become as one with the ricochet robots...

I was pleased to play Tayu again, 2 weeks in a row now. It is truly one of the long-lost classics of RussCon. For those not familiar with Tayu at RussCon, we tend to avoid building "the cube" (stack) of tiles (since you can inadvertantly see too much information, i.e. the connections are visible on the sides of the tiles), plus it's a hassle. We just draw from the bag, and we keep one public visible tile (so you can use it, or take a random one).


Rank Ratings:    
 3.4012 Jeffles
 2.4849 RussW
 2.0149 ToddG
 1.3863 Marty
 1.0986 Clayton
 1.0986 KevinU
 0.2877 RussD
 0.2877 Tim
 0.0000 Ben
-0.2877 Pauline
-0.4054 Chad
-0.5108 MarkH
-0.9808 William
-1.2040 Whendy
-1.3863 JP
-1.7916 SarahM
-1.8326 Jerrie
-2.3026 Omar
Win Ratings:
 3.5190 Jeffles won 3 of 4
 2.4849 RussW won 3 of 4
 1.3218 ToddG won 1 of 2
 1.0986 Clayton won 1 of 2
 1.0986 KevinU won 2 of 3
 0.9808 Marty won 1 of 2
 0.9808 RussD won 1 of 2
 0.9808 Tim won 1 of 2
 0.1178 SarahM won 1 of 4
-0.2877 Chad won 0 of 1
-0.4463 Jerrie won 0 of 2
-0.5108 Ben won 1 of 4
-0.6931 Pauline won 0 of 2
-0.7340 MarkH won 0 of 3
-0.9808 William won 0 of 3
-1.2040 Whendy won 0 of 3
-1.2040 JP won 0 of 3
-1.6094 Omar won 0 of 3

Jeffles is the Devil! I am the Vice-Devil. ToddG is the Vice-Vice-Devil. Then Clayton, KevinU, and Marty.

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

JimG was the Meta Devil and designed the following Meta Game.

Keeping in the word game meta-game meta-theme established last week by Ben, tonight’s meta-game starts as a fill-in the blanks game.

The following phrases are logically connected to indicate something commonly used in boardgaming. The object is to determine what that “something” is, and then play as many games during the night as you can which utilize that something, so as to earn meta-points and the honor of designing the penultimate meta-game of 2004.

Each line represents a word in the phrase.

Hint: All phrases are titles to songs.


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3 meta-points (MPs) for each phrase corrected filled in
1 MP for determining the “something” that connects the phrases
1 MP/game played which utilizes the “something” in its play
1 MP/game won which utilizes the “something” in its play

I will email out the answers to the phrases at 11 pm on Wednesday, so that scoring can be done at the end of the night.

As it turns out, this puzzle was rather more cryptic to us than Jim expected, and no one had a clue what the song titles were. The answers are:

Fortunately, Jim wisely included methods of earning meta points could happen automatically, and Saint Petersburg has money in it. So the players of that game each earned a meta point, and the winner (Clayton) earned a second meta point. So Clayton is the Meta Devil and will design next week's meta game!

Evening's Soundtrack

Maggie Drennon
Sinéad O'Connor, I do not want what I haven't got
Iggy Pop, Brick by Brick
Bobby Horton, Homespun Songs of the Union Army volume 1
Wild at Heart, Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

In November I started teaching English as a Second Language for Literacy Austin, and thus far I've taken in 5 songs with printed lyrics for my students to listen to and read along. I chose songs which seemed to have reasonable clear vocabulary, pronunciation, speed, and interesting understandable theme or story. They came from these 5 CDs, and the songs are:

The students hadn't heard of any of the songs before (I thought they might have known "Nothing Compares 2 U" or "Candy"), except for "Love Me Tender", which they all knew and were humming along enthusiastically...

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