The day began with a killer breakfast. For the second year, I attended Tracy & Laura Hickman’s killer breakfast. It is a live event, where the New York Times bestselling author tells a story that includes audience participation. This year’s story was about a group of adventurers that were having breakfast in a local dinner when a ghost ship crashes into the establishment, and ghosts of former Chicago Cubs begin to haunt the surviving adventurers. (FYI) There were no survivors with the exception of Santa Claus who pops in to tell Tracy Hickman that he has made the “naughty” list. The event includes videos, songs, and games. It was great fun. Later in the day I met with Tracy, and had him sign a couple of his books for me.
I spent several hours in the auction room on Saturday. While purchasing a game from my want list, “Clue: The Great Museum Caper” (1991,) I considered bidding on one of two copies of “Conquest of the Empire” (1984) but sat idle as they both went for $40-60 each. While I was beating myself up for not bidding, I reminded myself that I would really have preferred a copy of “Shogun” (1986.) Both games are part of Milton Bradley's Gamemaster series. The game was later changed to “Samurai Swords” due to a name conflict with James Clavell's Shogun. While eating my lunch, a plastic tub that contained three complete copies of “Shogun” came up for bid. I eagerly raised my bid card, and won the auction. The final price was $30. While the boxes were missing, the tub contained an additional 5 sets of complete miniatures. Overall, I felt that I got a good deal. While it is not a collectors copy, it is a very playable copy. It is interesting to note as I write this blog, there are multiple used copies for sale on Ebay $150 plus.
Saturday concluded with a game of Shifting Sands. It is a card driven WWII board game focused on the conflict in North Africa. A card driven can be described as a game where the cards may have multiple actions including operations, events, and outcomes. In shifting sands, the cards can be used for re-enforcements, the stated events based on a real WWII event in North Africa, or operations. An operation is the numbers choices you can make on your turn such as attacking, or moving divisions. The game is difficult to set up, but once game play begins, it can be an intense tug of war. Kudos to Bob for inviting me to the game.