Halesowen Board Gamers #1

I’ve decided to start doing a separate update for ‘general things’ and Halesowen games, as I think those of you that go there each week are likely more interested in just reading about what I did at the night ^^, so this seemed a convenient idea.

So anyway, on Wednesday I came along with Viticulture, Euphoria & Machine of death, and the first of that set got played (Yay!). Viticulture is a game I picked up totally on a whim through a charity auction from Stonemaier Games – I wasn’t particularly into worker-placements at the time, and I don’t like wine, I just felt the company seemed really interesting and wanted to try out their earlier game (I was supporting Euphoria on kick-starter at the time).

As it turns out, the game is absolutely great, and dragged me way more into worker-placement games than I was! The game plays out in years, with each year having 4 unique seasons to achieve tasks. Between years players grapes/wines ‘age’, increasing in value, making even low quality product become useful in time. You also get income each year based on wine-orders that you’ve set up your vineyard to fulfill.

In Spring, players choose a play-order, with larger bonus’s the later you go. In Summer players can build up their vineyard, gaining money, building useful structures and planting vines. In Autumn players just gain a Summer or Winter themed ‘Visitor card’ which can be played in their respective times of the year (By placement) for useful effects. In Winter players capitalize on their vineyard, harvesting grapes, crushing them and filling orders, as well as gaining workers for the next year.

The game is great, and I’m happy to have it and to have been able to introduce some of you at Halesowen to it. The players in our game were Me, Dave F, James & Andy (Sorry I don’t know last initials, should be on Dave D’s blog though!).

My focus in the game was to try and get a tasting room as a consistent victory points source, with a couple of low-quality setup fields that I could use to get grapes and leave them to age. I managed to get these things setup fairly early through a pair of visitor cards letting me sacrifice points for money & building (So I was on -4 ^^). Getting the tasting room so early let me capitalize on it through the years and undo the negatives I took to get it, and as it triggers from getting money it helped me get other buildings too.

I don’t remember what the other players went for exactly, but:James: Took an extra worker a lot, got a windmill but didn’t manage to use it as much as he wanted.
Dave:  Vines/Order Focused (i think), didn’t notice any special buildings on his.
Andy: Got a lot of money over the game, not sure where he spent it though!

In the end I took victory, with Dave/Andy close behind and James in last place, although I don’t think he was too far back. Apologies I don’t remember how things went properly, I’ll try harder next time ^^.

Afterwards, we had time for a quick game while waiting for others to finish and sync for heading home after. We went with Carcassonne as it’s a lovely game and easy to fit into 20-30 minute gaps of time. I very early went for a field as it was looking to get a lot of small cities in it, and focused on keeping it throughout the game. Dave also put a lot into trying to steal the field from me (We ended up drawing 4-4 to take it), while the others focused on cities/roads.

For a lot of the game people seemed to worry my field would get me the victory, but in the end it just wasn’t enough, and the amount of workers Dave made me use to keep control of it meant I never got many other points. Scores should be on Dave-D’s blog, but spoilers, I didn’t win.


Thanks for a great night again to all halesowen board game attendee’s! =)

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