Today was exactly as I had hoped. I knew today (Sunday) would be a day to relax and recharge. Yesterday my Dad and I had our first music gig in a year and half (due to the pandemic). It was an absolute blast, but I was wiped last night. Meaning today would allow me the perfect excuse to get my favourite game back to the table!
The day started off with Manchester United winning their game this morning (which sets a nice tone for the rest of the day). Once it was over, I made some lunch, a tea and brought out Scythe. No expansions. Just the base game. Time to get back into it!
Here's my setup...
I decided to play against two Automa opponents, but went with the "Automa (-)" system (as it's referred to in the Scythe Bingo campaign variant). Meaning it's played at the Automa (normal) difficulty level, but utilizes the "miss a turn" icon used in the Autometta (easy) difficulty. I figured it'd be a nice way to get back into things.
Factions and my player mat were chosen at random. A little shuffle and pick. Whatever I get, I get. Unfortunately I chose the Nordic faction; Bjorn & Mox to take on the Rusviet and Crimean factions. In my opinion, the Nords are one of my weaker factions. Not to mention, I didn't enjoy the Rusviets being so close.
My setup with my Automa decks and factions was quite nice today, if I do say so myself. Typically I have them beside my faction mat and player board below the main board, but it can get feeling a bit crowded. This setup was much better. Off to the right of the main board, and plenty of room for everything.
As expected, quite early on the Rusviets were making me nervous. It's one of the aspects of Scythe I love so much; the THREAT of battle. I'm a lifelong athlete. I don't stray from competition whatsoever. But the idea in Scythe that battles cost resources (i.e. power) is just fantastic. It really makes you have to consider WHEN / IF you will attack your opponent. In the Automa's case here, they're just making me nervous my workers may be attacked. 😯 But that alone, shifts your thinking as the defending faction and can potentially hinder your plans. SO MUCH FUN!
I have to say, I made some really nice choices in the game today which made me happy. Sure I've been playing digitally since my last table play (which was Ep. 3 of the Rise of Fenris campaign) back on May 1st ... That's way too long!!! However, playing at the table, especially with a couple Automa, your mind has to work much harder. I was sipping my tea, taking my time and really just enjoying playing again. I think that helped keep me calm and make some nice choices.
I did however make a mistake 😮 *GASP!* That's what I love about Scythe. My 104th time at the table with the game (plus 70+ digitally) and situations can still arise that make you stop and check the rules, while you wonder if you did the right thing. Here's what happened...
In the picture, the Rusviet faction was about to attack me. In this case, there are three of my attack units "in the neighbourhood" of Rusviet units. The attacking mech is the one on the Rusviet's home base. So which unit is attacked? I reviewed the help cards that come with the Automa decks. I kept focusing on "closest to Automa base", when the reality was I should've (in this case) focused on closest to factory, which was Bjorn and Mox. In hindsight, Bjorn and Mox being attacked would've changed the game somewhat. I'm not sure how much overall, but THIS definitely wouldn't have happened....
Bjorn and Mox got to the factory, and were completely surrounded! I kept drawing Automa cards that would be a "non-attacking" move for character/mechs. 🤣 As I mentioned, I made the mistake in Bjorn and Mox not being attacked by a Rusviet mech earlier. Well, I also realized (only after the game ended) that I also didn't even grab a factory card for Bjorn and Mox when they arrived at the factory. Say what??
That's a rookie move 104 games in eh??? 🤣
Despite a couple mistakes, this is how the stars ended up finishing. For me, it was my decision to produce all my workers (which I rarely do) that really helped me get so many stars, because I could quickly produce resources with all those workers. Between that and drawing the 'Innovative' player mat with the Nordic faction, it created some nice smart decisions. Whenever Scythe comes to the table, that's a big thing I look for when I play, win or lose; Was I making good choices or not?
This last pic was the last play of the game. The Rusviet mech attacked the Crimean mech and placed it's sixth star. Talk about a busy board though... phew!
*As I type this, this may also have been a mistake. Bjorn and Mox should've been the target again I believe - aw crap... I'm gonna lose my ST badge after this post 🤣*
It just felt so nice to get the game back to the table and play. I really missed it. Not having to rush, making a mistake here and there in the rules, making some nice decisions and having a blast all at the same time.
It also shows why I didn't jump right back into my Rise of Fenris campaign. I need to refresh a little bit I'd say.
Overall, a great afternoon at the table. 😁