Dale Yu: Recap of Basement Con 2011

Well, just taking a minute to jot a quick note for the blog.  It’s been quiet this weekend – mostly because a lot of our writers have been busy playing games at a number of different events across the country!  I had to miss Great Lakes Games this year as my brother found himself in town – but we managed to convert his visit into an excuse to have my first annual Basement Con instead!

I must admit that this year, I have made better progress playing the new Essen games than any previous year… One reason is that I did have the opportunity to play a couple of games prior to leaving for Essen.  I also managed to have two gaming sessions between Essen and this weekend, getting in seven new games in those two meetings.  Having a full weekend of gaming at my house didn’t hurt either in the quest to play all the new games!  Of the new games, there are still about 10 in my possession that haven’t been played (and I am expecting a box to arrive from Germany via DHL with another 8-10 games inside!)

Here are the games that I played this weekend at Basement Con:

  1. Rolling Bones
  2. Master Merchant
  3. Coney Island
  4. Meltdown 2020
  5. Timeline: Inventions
  6. Rallyman: Dirt
  7. Dungeon Fighter
  8. Dungeon Fighter
  9. Tournay
  10. Pergamemnon
  11. Fruit Ninja: TCG
  12. Eclipse
  13. Terra Evolution
  14. Hawaii
  15. Tschaak
  16. Timeline: Inventions
  17. Vanuatu
  18. Walnut Grove
  19. Talat
  20. Trajan
  21. Forgotten Planet
  22. Carre
  23. Ab in die Tonne
  24. MIL (1049)
  25. Fruit Ninja TCG
  26. Carre
  27. Helvetia
  28. Dr Shark
  29. Walnut Grove
  30. Walnut Grove
  31. Singapore
  32. Trajan
  33. Paperclip Railways
  34. Poseidon’s Kingdom
  35. Gnomes of Zavandor
  36. Old Men of the Forest
  37. Hawaii
  38. Marble Monster
  39. Galaxia
  40. Fortuna
  41. Feudalherren
  42. City Tycoon
  43. Recycle
  44. PAX

So… to date, I have played 52 games from this fall – almost all of them from Essen. 18 of the games have been played more than once already, and three games were aborted prior to completion for various reasons.  My initial ratings are showing that this year is very similar to last year — there are many good games though an “alltime top 20” game has not yet emerged, though there are three games that might eventually reach that status for me.

A quantification of my ratings so far:

  • 8 = Love it!
  • 22 = Like it.
  • 15 = Neutral
  • 7 = Not for me…

The Love it! games so far are (in alphabetical order):  Ab in die Tonne, City Tycoon, Hawaii, Helvetia, Last Will, Rallyman: Dirt, Splits, Walnut Grove.

At this point, I’m keeping the rest of the actual details under wraps – mostly because I have found there can still be a fair amount of movement of my ratings in the first couple of plays of the Essen games.  Plenty of Essen games end up with lower ratings initially due to slow first games, multiple rules questions, my own tiredness from five days of gaming, etc.  Given that usual pattern, I’d prefer to give many of the games a second play before declaring a rating on them… and give the games a fair chance before I write about them… (Also, I’ve got a lot of First Impression columns to write, and I don’t want to spill the beans early!)

I’m probably taking the next week or two off from boardgaming to catch up on some real-life work issues, but I’m hoping to resume my regular weekly group as well as get another full weekend of gaming at Thanksgiving to try all the new games for the first time as well as getting back into the games that intrigued me from the first pass.

Hopefully in the next week or two, the folks who were at the other gaming events will have a chance to check in and let us know what they played. Also, the next two weekends will give others a chance to play the new games at EuroQuest, BGG.con and LobsterTrap (just to name a few of the bigger events)

Until your next appointment,

The Gaming Doctor

About Dale Yu

Dale Yu is the Editor of the Opinionated Gamers. He can occasionally be found working as a volunteer administrator for BoardGameGeek, and he previously wrote for BoardGame News.
This entry was posted in Commentary. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Dale Yu: Recap of Basement Con 2011

  1. Pete says:

    Rallyman is outstanding…and I want Eclipse more than pretty much anything else this year. Oh, and thanks for the call for Basement Con, you weenie!

  2. Adam says:

    Impressive list! Definitely looking forward to your take on City Tycoon, Hawaii, and Walnut Grove.

  3. Dale Yu says:

    Pete – it wasn’t a traditional “con”. Just one table of gamers in my basement. And eventhough Eclipse isn’t my sort of usual game, it was a really good introduction to the genre. Not as much conflict as I had expected (though I don’t know if that’s because we were mostly Eurogamers playing it), and even our learning game clocked in under 3 hours, so that’s making it more likely for me to want to play again in the future.

  4. Dale Yu says:

    @Adam – well, hopefully we’ll start with First Impressions in the next few weeks. After Thanksgiving, hopefully a critical number of us OG writers will have played the games so we can start working on full reviews… Soon, I promise!

  5. jeffinberlin says:

    I’m eager to try a longer game again, and bought Eclipse in Essen. I lent it to a friend with more free time to study the rules and he’s played a couple of learning games already, so I’m ready to be taught the game soon! How many players were there in your 3-hour learning game? I do hope there’s plenty of opportunity for conflict.

Leave a Reply