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2004-09-15 RussCon Report

antarctic rails

Antarctic Rails, a russcon game

Nobody told me the two games whose art was used as a source for Antarctic Rails. Since Clayton and I spent so much time on this silly image, I'm leaving it up again so you can bask in its glory, and whoever first tells me the answer gets a free meta point to use in a future meta game of their choice! It's like a Get Out Of Jail Free card! It's like a dangerous double-secret meta precedent!

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23 of us played 18 games! A crowded festive night indeed. Jeffles reappeared with further hints that he's moving back to Austin. Cool to see Sarah (of Tim and Sarah fame) again. Thanks JeffS for making tasty cherry pie! Hadn't seen KevinU for a few weeks; he's starting Japanese classes. Hmm, and William's interested in Spanish. Woohoo, language geekery!

For those who haven't heard, I have begun a brilliant career as a professional international journalist. Details here. On the domestic front, many people noticed the RussCon gaming area was much more clean and orderly, thanks to a recent obsessive-compulsive evening with William!

Game Results

Exxtra4MarkH 3 Ben 1 Clayton -1 Adam -3
Tichu2( Ben KevinU ) 1 ( MarkH Adam ) -1
RicochetRobot5JP 3 Jeffles 3 Adam 0 KevinU -2 Ben -4
ModernArt4RussW 3 Tim 1 Whendy -1 Sarah -3
Ra4Marty 3 JimG 1 MarkY -2 JP -2
PrincesOfFlorence5MarkY 4 ToddG 2 JimG 0 Marty -2 EricE -4
Can'tStop5Sarah 4 Whendy 2 Tim -2 RussW -2 William -2
TicketToRide5JeffS 4 Clayton 2 KevinY 0 Fina -2 TimG -4
RealLife3Ben 2 William 0 Jeffles -2
Mu5Adam 4 KevinU 2 Ben 0 MarkH -2 Jeffles -4
ZirkusFlohcati5Fina 4 Clayton 2 JP 0 JeffS -2 JimG* -4
SaintPetersburg4William 3 Pauline 1 RussW -1 RussD -3
SanJuan2ToddG 1 EricE -1
SanJuan3KevinY 2 RussW 0 TimG -2
PiratesOfTheSpanishMain2Jeffles 1 Ben -1
Bluff5William 4 Jeffles 2 KevinY -1 MarkY -1 RussW -4
War2MarkY 1 Jeffles -1
CarcassonneCastle2KevinU 1 Clayton -1

*UPDATE: It was TimG not JimG who played Zirkus Flohcati and came in last. Your humble RussCon Management begs the pardon of JimG, and begs game recorders to write clearly.

We were all a bit rusty on Modern Art, but somehow I ended up with almost 600,000 dollars and won. I thank the fact that I got to play several double auctions. For one of them, I lacked the second card, and Whendy on my left also lacked that artist so she suffered the pain of a skipped turn. I wonder if there are people who intentionally don't play the second card even when they have it, just to try getting other players to miss turns and get the turn back around to themselves quicker. Perhaps that is a viable tactic, though our groupthink is that you surely play the second card if you have it.

Jeffles donated a couple booster packs of Pirates of the Spanish Main, a "collectible strategy game" with pirate ship models you build out of stiff cardboard, making ships of good fun toy value. He and Ben played; I don't know how the game is yet, but the ships are cute.

RussD and Pauline were newcomers to Saint Petersburg. She got the Mistress of Ceremonies on the first turn and probably would have gone onto victory but for her being a newbie, so she lacked sufficient aristocrats to overcome William's large number of them in the end (which caused him to literally double his his score in the final scoring.) I believe William erred by taking the Mistress of Ceremonies into his hand midway through the game, where she stayed till the last round, but in the end he won, so you can't argue with success!

War was played for inexplicable reasons. Yes, the random decisionless card game.


Rank Ratings:    
 2.4849 William
 1.3863 KevinU
 1.3863 ToddG
 1.3218 MarkY
 0.9163 Fina
 0.9163 JeffS
 0.8109 KevinY
 0.6931 Marty
 0.4055 Pauline
 0.2877 Whendy
 0.2877 Clayton
 0.2231 Sarah
 0.2231 JP
 0.0000 MarkH
-0.1054 Ben
-0.1054 Tim
-0.4700 Adam
-1.0987 Jeffles
-1.1394 RussW
-1.2040 JimG
-1.3863 RussD
-2.3026 EricE
-2.7076 TimG
Win Ratings:
 2.3671 William won 2 of 4
 1.7918 MarkY won 2 of 4
 1.3863 Fina won 1 of 2
 1.3863 JeffS won 1 of 2
 1.3218 Sarah won 1 of 2
 1.1632 Marty won 1 of 2
 0.6523 KevinU won 2 of 4
 0.6523 KevinY won 1 of 3
 0.4700 ToddG won 1 of 2
 0.4700 MarkH won 1 of 3
 0.4055 JP won 1 of 3
 0.2469 RussW won 1 of 5
 0.1178 Adam won 1 of 4
 0.0770 Ben won 2 of 6
 0.0646 Jeffles won 2 of 6
-0.2877 Pauline won 0 of 1
-0.2877 RussD won 0 of 1
-0.5108 Whendy won 0 of 2
-0.5108 Tim won 0 of 2
-0.6287 TimG won 0 of 2
-0.7340 JimG won 0 of 3
-0.9163 EricE won 0 of 2
-1.4271 Clayton won 0 of 4

William is the Devil! MarkY and KevinU are Vice-Devils! Then JeffS, Fina, and ToddG.

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

KevinY was the Meta Devil and designed the following Meta Game:

In the spirit of St. P and diversifying aristocrats, the meta game will be simple. One point for the first time you play a particular game that night, thus to win the game you must play many different games. I'm assuming tie-breakers will be needed so, the first tie-breaker is the number of different places you've achieved that night (1st place in a two player game and 1st place in a six player game will still just be one 1st). Final tie-breaker will be determined with a toss of a die.

Thank Cthulhu there wasn't a big tie. Jeffles and Ben both played 6 titles. They both gained 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th places in their various games, so there's still a tie. Going to my traditional tiebreaking die from my original edition of TSR's Dungeon! I find that the Meta Devil is Ben, who will design next week's Meta Game!

Evening's Soundtrack

Le Chevalier de Saint-Georges, Concertos pour violon
The Benzedrine Monks of Santo Domonica, Chantmania
Henry Purcell, Odes for St Cecilia's Day
Bob Rivers & Twisted Radio, I Am Santa Claus
Lara St. John, Gypsy

A soundtrack theme dedicated to the spirit of Saint Meta. I don't know if anyone detected the theme.

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