Ed was holding another long game day. So I made cherry hand pies. They were fun to make. But towards the end, I was overwhelmed by the effort each pie took. First I had to mix the ingredients together and stick the bowl in the freezer so that the mixture would harden up. Then , for each pie, I had to:
- Take the bowl out of the freezer.
- Scoop out some of the mixture and weigh it (trying to get similar sized pies).
- Possibly put the bowl back in the freezer if I took too long making the pies
- Flour my hands well and put the scoop of the mixture and form a ball
- Put the ball down and start to roll it out
- At some point, put more flour on the circle of dough
- Stop when it is rolled out 5 inches in diameter
- Scoop out some cherry filling onto circle
- fold half of the circle over top of the cherry filling with a bench scraper
- Crimp the edges with a fork. Remembering to flour the fork because it occasionally sticks
- poke holes in the top for steam
- Pick it up with the scraper and put it on the sheet pan
My only problem with them was that I didn’t let them dry out enough after cooking.
Ed installed a flash for his camera. Its interesting just how much light a camera needs in order to take a picture. For this picture, I used ISO 1600, a shutter speed of 1/30, and a f-stop of 5.6. 1/30th of a second is pushing it at this focal length (28mm). And an ISO of 1600 is pushing it with this camera as well. Sigh. I can’t wait to get an 1D Mark III. Having an extra stop of ISO will certainly help.
John started off us with a new game, Nottingham. This game was billed as a light set collecting game. However, it turned out a be a hose everyone and random play game. There are seven suits of cards. On your turn, you flip over a card. You can either take it or use its power to mess with people. There are cards to seal from people, rob from people, force people to show their hands and take from them, force people to possibly give up cards, or to stop once those painful things from happening to you.
Theres no planning on what cards to collect. Only to hope that you can fulfill one of the set types that score lots of points. Playing those can’t be stopped. Otherwise, you are at the mercy of someone screwing with you. Such fun.
Susan showed us the extremely cute and furry bundle of energy called Riku.
Through the Ages
Marty had wanted to play TtA. So I brought it over. However, he only wanted to play it three player due to time restrictions. Tim joined in.
This game was close! In the end, Marty pipped me by a couple of points. Towards the end, I had a good leader (James Cook) with some territories. So I was scoring well. However, Marty was able to put Iconoclasm into play during the third era (discard all leaders not of the current era). This made me loose Cook and his point generation. Marty was able to play a good leader (Elvis Presley) and able to get his victory point generation up to 16 points a turn.
I knew I had to respond somehow. Fortunately, my army was bigger than his. And, I drew Annex (take a colony), Assassinate (kill a leader), and Spy (take 5 science points). I played Annex first and won. Later, when I was 18 points ahead in military power, I played Assassinate. Unfortunately, I did not bother to sacrifice some units to increase the power. And Marty was able to play 3 six point defense cards to keep his leader. I should have went all out.
Still, it was a fun and close game.
Age of Steam: Western U.S.
To end out the night, I played another meaty game: Age of Steam. We tried a new board as well. The board was interesting. There were two clear choices of starting locations. However, towards the end of the game, everyone was close in points. Apparently, all four corners of the map were decent starting locations. But the western half of the board had a lot of mountains. And building on mountains is costly. That probably hurt Ed and Jon somewhat.
The final scoring was nail-biting. It looked like a close race between me and a new-comer. We were tied in the first calculation. And I turned out to have built more track than he did for the win.