Billygames do not very often play card games, I don’t know why but that’s just how it works out. Well tonight was an exception as we ventured into the intriquing world of wine auctions. In Die Weinhandler players participate in auctions for wine and try to build up the most valuable cellar of bottles. The deck of cards consists of images of various shapes of bottles in different colours. The object is to build a ‘cellar’ in reality a pyramid of cards laid down in front of you. Each card has a value, used for the bidding, and a star value, the vintage, which gets you VPs when played to your cellar. You start with a hand of 5 cards, and 4 cards are turned face up from the deck for the first auction. Players bid with cards from their hands or pass, if you bid you can add further cards to increase your bid when it comes round to you again or pass. When everyone has passed the auction ends. The interesting bit is that the winner takes the four cards on offer and the second highest takes what the winner bid, the third highest takes what the second highest bid and so on.
This leads to some interesting bidding when players are not necessarily trying to win the cards on the table but cards that other players have bid. When you have over 6 cards in your hand you have to lay cards to your cellar to get down to 6. Again this forces you to lay cards that you might not really want to lay yet. I liked this game quite a lot. Garry seemed to have a monopoly in the blue cards and Neil had quite a few of the red. The game ends when the deck has run out, you then can lay any cards you have in your hand. In the last bidding the cards on the table were quite beneficial to me as it would let me complete a set for a bonus of 4 points. Also I had enough cards in my hand to outbid the others without throwing to many points away.
Colin 41, Steve 32, Neil 31, Richard 28, Garry 24
As we had a bit of time left we decided to give Mogul a spin. Some of us had played this once before but it was a while ago. This is a very brief description from BGG:
There are six shares each of five railroad companies. Each turn, one of the share cards is revealed and an auction ensues. Players earn money by dropping out of the auction, but the last player in wins the right to take the card or sell shares he already owns. Points are kept on a scoring track.
The bidding for the cards is very like Geschenkt, you either add a chip or take what is on the card. This can be very evil as you can leave the next player pretty broke (thank you Richard). I seemed to have cornered the market in brown shares. Everybody else had got points on the board, but as the game progressed I realised that I would have to gamble that a card appeared that allowed you to sell brown shares. I carefully hoarded my money, making sure that I could outbid everybody else. The flaw in my plan was the stockmarket crash card. This is shuffled into the bottom four cards. Well the card I wanted hadn’t appeared and we were down to the bottom four. If it appeared and I won it I would get 20 points, enough to win the game. But you guessed it, the very next card that was turned over.......was the crash card. Doh!!! Nice little game though.
Neil 18, Richard 13, Steve 9, Garry 8, Colin 2