Every year or so my buddy Carl throws Kitchcon. A small gathering in a board game store as a reaction to everyone showing off their new hauls from Gen Con and those not going having nothing new to play. This was my first year attending - they even rescheduled so they made sure I could attend this year. We had some twitter chatter leading up about some games we were hoping to get played. I packed up some favorites and headed to Kitchcon 3.
My wife Cindi joined me and we headed up and got to the store at little after 11am just after they opened. Prompt as always. Carl and his buddy Brandon were the others ready to play. Carl had asked me to bring my game Dugeon Dice. I didn’t have this game as a kid - I just recently picked it up used at a game store. It is a 1977 Parker Brothers game by the prolific game designer Paul Gruen. Dungeon Dice is a simple rolling dice push your luck trying to match up symbols game. If you get enough symbols you get cards and the first to 8 cards wins. If you ever roll and do not add to your collection so far you bust. The game also has steal from the player ahead mechanism. Fairly simple mechanics that work still today.
A few more players joined in and we had six. Just enough for Brandon’s home brew six-player Looping Chewy. He had combined two games together into one game.
With the larger group we expanded to the other game I had Carl requested. This was Nuclear War. I’ve been playing “Nuke War” since the mid 80s though it was first published in 1965 by Flying Buffalo games. A tounge-in-cheek look at an otherwise depressing topic. This game is a bit dated with player elimination but that seems to fit the theme. I’ve curated my deck to something more fun and balanced. I was the first player out - which is common, as the teacher they attacked me often.
I stepped off and joined in to a game of Dungeon that was starting. I remember playing the 1975 Parker Brothers version. This was a more recent reprint but was pretty similar and had many throwback rules like lose a turn that were disappointing. Also some of the rules didn’t match with play. Lastly there was no player growth. Other similar era games like Talisman allow for character growth, where here limited magical items give you some bonuses but not enough to take on the stronger level monsters it appeared.
Meanwhile at the other table the wrapped up and my wife was able to teach a group her favorite game Mille Borne. A racing themed game she and I have played a ton of times.
This was a game she grew up playing that I learned from her.
I have an earlier blog post here about the game - the Mille Borne Story.
I requested Payday from 1975 another Parker Brothers game by Paul Gruen from my youth. This was a 2000 reprint that was similar to the one I played as a kid. Again this game seems to have aged OK for a modern crowd. A bit luck dependent on what deals you get and if you can get buyers on them since the pay off on those seems to be the largest.
I grabbed The Magnificent Race from Carl’s bag. It is a 1975 Parker Brothers game by designer Bill Cooke. He is better known for a game called Boggle. Carl and his wife Aly joined us. This game has a really usual spinner in the middle. Kind of like a roulette wheel without the compartments, just one divot for a marble. The goal of the game is to have various boat, automobile, steam or airplane races and gain points by coming in first class. When someone lands on a race you throw in at least on marble maybe more and always the non-player character Dastardly Dan You spin the wheel and the marbles spin out due to centrifugal force then you stop the wheel and wait til one rests in the divot. If it is a color they get 3 points for 1st place, if it is Dastardly Dan the race is OVER. The tension of the spinner was amazing. You could have 5 marbles in there and Dan would still slip in and ruin all of your planning. By the end of the game the other table had ended their game and was standing around watching us spin the wheel like a Vegas casino. This was the “new to me” hit of the night. I got on ebay after the con and bid on a copy and it is due to arrive this weekend.
Although the con went on after we left, we ended our night with Heart-trob a 1988 Milton Bradley game made famous on the Flip the Table podcast. We had a blast coming up with girl identities and talking about the boys and their characteristics and who was most date-able.