Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Tuesday April 19th - Powergrid

Originally uploaded by coljen.
Our first play of Power Grid was way back in February, and that was with four players. I must admit we struggled a bit with the rules then. The first turn took us nearly an hour! After that the game did speed up, but we didn’t finish it. This time we was a full complement of 6 players and we finished the game in about 150 minutes. This time we played the American board. The blue region bottom left in the picture was the no-go area for this game. We all managed to claim a reasonable position to start building from except maybe Garry, who was stuck in the north west area. Neil pretty much cornered the east coast, Natalie, Steve and myself starting centrally and worked our out way from there. This game requires a bit of mental arithmetic, working out your building costs and resources needed against your power plant expenditure and income. The manipulation of the turn order can important as the player with the most cities goes first in the auction for power plants, this was Neil pretty much all game. And the last player goes first buying resources and building cities. Obviously this can be quite important and I think Richard did try to buy power plants with numbers that would give him an advantage in turn order. Once you get into the swing of this game it does flow quite smoothly and I really like it. The winning condition is not only having the most cities but having the resources to power them as well, in the event of a tie most money in hand is the tiebreaker. At game end it was very close.

Final Scores (Cities supplied/Money in hand)
Neil 15, Richard 14/24, Colin 14/28, Steve 13/35, Garry 13/16, Natalie 11


At 7:21 PM, Blogger Richard Minson said...

It was good to play Powergrid again - especially with the full complement of 6 player (Though this still prevented us using the full map I don't know!)

For my part in the game I chose to position my initial City centrally (well top centre!) so that I would have the ability to expand my network in various directions and not be boxed in. As the initial sentence suggest I only purchase one city in the first round, this was partly to ensure I always had first choice as regards resources and city building, but also because I could only power one city in the first round as I had the 'Cheap windmill' power station.

On subsequent round I tried to keep my cities down to only what I could power and there fore generally have an first or early pick of resources and city site. In fact I generally ran quite a frugal enterprise during the game buying cheap and only purchasing powerstations when I was going to need them. City expansion wise I went south towards Colin and East into New England (Where Neil was) and a little bit east towards Garry and Steve. But basically I never really had a shortage of city sites.

Power station wise I eventually ended up with 3 all Oil burning stations (as only Colin had another Oil Burning station there was very little competition for the oil commodity so the price stayed low).

As the game cam towards its end it looked like Neil was going to walk it quite easily (well in my eyes) - but actually it all turned out quite close between Neil, Garry, Colin & myself - in fact both Neil, Garry & myself realised we had made mistakes in the last turn (which in Garry & my case probably cost us the win - well assuming Neil had not spotted his as well).

All in all a good game - in fact Powergrid has now gone onto my 'I will purchase it list'.


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