Session Report - Easy Slider, One Man Thrag!, The Penguin Game, and Tula

Thanks to everyone who pointed me in the direction of some 
Solitaire games.  I will likely be getting to the others tomorrow.

It was suggested that one way that I could contribute before 
offering up any games of my own was via session reports and 
suggestions in general.  So here I am with my first session 

Easy Slider:

My first thought was "This is great!  Square Off for the 
Piecepack!!!"  This was introduce to me in a 4 player game by the 
designers a little while back and I loved it.  It didn't hurt that I grew 
up with Square Off and thus beat the proverbial pants off 
everyone.  I am definitely a fan of the "Slide!" variant as then it will 
keep my speed from being as much of an advantage.  After 
seeing it mentioned as a solitaire game I game it a shot and 
have to say that in it's basic form it will not work as a solitaire 
game in the sense that you will always win.  It does however 
work well as a solitaire puzzle.  One further step would be to 
write up the layout and try it over to see how few moves you can 
use to solve it.

One Man: Thrag!:  

I was impressed by this games use of, I think, every aspect of 
the Piecepack.   The design is good and is the most fun of the 
four I tried.  I won 2 out of 3 plays but all were pretty close with 
either little resources left to use or only one monster left to slay.  I 
was left with only one question/suggestion.  In the rules it seems 
to be clear the you can only use the coins against monsters of 
the same color but in the example the player was allowed to use 
a red coin against a green beast.  Which is correct?  I used the 
more restrictive version in the rules.  Perhaps a clarification 
would be in order. 

I suggest a version a little different from either that meets half 
way.  If you defeat all monsters of a given color you may then use 
those coins either to help attack monsters of other colors.   One 
variation might be to allow you to use as many of these coins as 
you like on any monster in addition to the one you get from it's 
natural color.  Another variation that I thought of is that you could 
have the option to add them to your health pool as needed.  Thus 
if you were taking damage you could pull one of that color of coin 
and put it directly into your black pool thus possibly extending 
Thrag's life.

The Penguin Game:

Not much to say here as I only played it once.  I am a fan of 
Quivive and think that the variants here are an improvement on 
the original.  I won easily, ending on my starting color and can't 
say as I am excited about it as a solitaire but I am looking 
forward to try it with other players.  I'll likely have more to say 
when that happens.  Until then, I can only say the design looks 


I tried this 10 times and gave up.  I think that the layout is creative 
and the that game design is a good idea but the playability 
makes puts it low on my list of games I want to come back to.   It 
seems to me that this is more in the patience catagory.  If I have 
a lot of patience then eventually I will get lucky and the tiles will 
be in a winable order.  I am open to seeing more skill in it's play 
if someone can give me some suggestions but my games went 
like this (I am not counting the first one off as that is a complete 

1. 11 tiles off (beginners luck)
2. No plays
3. No plays
4. No plays
5. 3 off
6. 1 off
7. 2 off
8. 1 off
9. 1 off
10. 2 off

I tried to think of ways to make it more playable such as 
additional swaps or having the tiles face up.  But as I only got 
into layer 2 twice out of 10 plays I gave up.  Again, I don't think the 
concept is poor just it's playbility.  Even the toughest layouts of 
Shang Hai give you more options.

Thank you to all the designers of these games.  I hope that my 
questions and thoughts are well received.  I woke up this 
morning with the rough idea for a game in my head and hope to 
have something solid enough for an intial play in a few days.  
Hope, Hope... It is intended to be a solitaire game that is 
expandable to more players but may end up requiring an 
opponent or teamate.   It will make more sense when I post it.

I hope to get to Dragon's Hoard, Pack Solitaire, Knight of the New 
Moon and Black Pawn Trucking tomorrow.

Good night,