May 20 RussCon Report.

Since I was the devil, I picked the dining table games, and I (perhaps foolishly) took us on a nostalgia trip, playing a couple games I'd not played in years. We played Black Morn Manor (the old Chill boardgame with the geomorphic map that gets built as you go) and Hoax (an old Eon game of secret identities and bluffing).

We were also graced with the triumphant return of Wendy to Wednesday night gaming, a second appearance by the formerly elusive Dr. Randy, plus Special Guest Chicagoan EricH! We also had quite a large crowd, 18 of us, with 2 new folks Charles and Stefan. Hoody-hoo!

Tim won Black Morn Manor, as a successful minion.

William and I each won a game of Hoax, both times due to the group voting to challenge us and being wrong.

Jay won Ghost Party.

Wendy won Settlers.

Jonathan "Weasel Boy" C won Acquire.

Dawn won Illuminati. (The original version -- I wish I knew where my set disappeared off to; that's another nostalgia game!)

Tim won RoboRally. This was a cool game with 7 of us playing, I believe the largest I've played in. We used the Chasm map again, and the first flag was on an island, which led to some pretty interesting situations. The later flags were easier to get to, so it didn't take forever. We're slowly learning about proper factory design... Also Eric artificially deflated his rating by resigning to leave for the night... (Not that we wouldn't have kicked his ass anyway!)

James won Atlantic Storm.

Stefan won Survive (an old family game which Brady brought).


[News for Cosmic fans, reported by our loyal correspondent RussD]

Hey guys, have you heard about the online Cosmic Encounter game produced by the originators of Cosmic? It's at:

They don't have the complete set of powers, and you play to only four external bases. Still, it's pretty cool. You have to have a browser that supports Java (the game is a big Java applet) to play.

Russ, maybe you can pass the news on through your RussCon email list.

-- Russ


Ratings for the evening:

For those unfamiliar with The Devil Point System...

Your rank rating is simply

(#opponents you beat - #opponents who beat you) / #opponents.

This ranges from -1 to 1.

Your win rating is more complex to describe; ask me if you really care. (No one does, I know... boo hoo.) It too ranges from -1 to 1.

There are 2 ratings because some people consider your rank significant: is it better to come in 3rd than 4th? Some people consider only whether you won or lost significant. The consensus seems to be there's no single Right Answer, and both are interesting. Is it better to come in 1st half the time and last half the time, or is it better to consistently come in 2nd? I consider rank and winning both to be important and so I compute them both. Then I combine the results with an ever-evolving algorithm to determine the top Devil for the evening.

Rank ratings:
 0.4444 Stefan (3 games played)
 0.4400 Tim (5)
 0.4000 JonathanC (2)
 0.2500 Wendy (2)
 0.1200 RussW (5)
 0.1111 Charles (2)
 0.1000 William (4)
 0.0000 Dawn (2)
 0.0000 RussD (2)
-0.0909 Randy (2)
-0.1111 James (3)
-0.1200 Jay (5)
-0.2000 Marty (1)
-0.2105 Doug (4)
-0.2105 Ken (4)
-0.2500 Brady (2)
-0.3333 JP (2)
-0.8182 EricH (2)

Win ratings:
 0.6667 JonathanC (2)
 0.6667 Dawn (2)
 0.6364 Wendy (2)
 0.5203 Tim (5)
 0.2500 William (4)
 0.1429 James (3)
 0.1429 Stefan (3)
 0.1089 Jay (5)
 0.1041 RussW (5)
-1.0000 Charles (2)
-1.0000 RussD (2)
-1.0000 Randy (2)
-1.0000 Marty (1)
-1.0000 Doug (4)
-1.0000 Ken (4)
-1.0000 Brady (2)
-1.0000 JP (2)
-1.0000 EricH (2)

The partial ordering came out very messy, and I'm not even going to make a diagram for it. The upshot, however, is that JonathanC is the devil, and so gets camping rights for the dining table. Congrats!

Tim ends up 2nd, and Stefan and Wendy tie for 3rd unless I messed up my calculations. Proofs left as exercise for the reader.

Tim gets award for being only player to win 2 games in the evening, but his other 3 losses diluted his rating.

EricH is the Generous Angel for the evening. RussD gets the Extra Average award.


Hope everyone had a fun Memorial Day weekend.

I picked up a new German game I read a favorable post about: Downtown. It looks interesting. Hopefully we'll get to play it this week. Plus some wacky new music for our listening pleasure.

See y'all Wednesday!