weekly roundup – February 5th

This will be a short one. In the last couple weeks, I’ve been focusing on other things and haven’t read many articles or played many games.

I’m still a week or two behind in Bloomberg Businessweek, but I found this article about a man who has donated millions to Ted Cruz’s campaign to be very interesting. Robert Mercer is a very wealthy programmer and hedge fund manager who donates to political campaigns and summits and movements that push for the gold standard and deny climate change. He and I basically have nothing in common, but it would be interesting to have a conversation with him (though he is also fairly reticent about his personal beliefs, so it might be difficult). The story is light on formative background for Mercer, and I would want to know why on earth… just… why.

My Facebook feed has been dominated by a few outspoken Sanders supporters, and it made me start thinking that everyone was like that. I’ve taken measures to lessen that exposure and talk to Clinton supporters more. And then I came across this piece this morning, and it seemed like perfect timing. Clinton has been in the national spotlight for 25 years. She has incredible perseverance, and she has had to deal with so much mud-slinging for pretty much the entire time. The GOP is encouraging Sanders supporters to spew the same vitriol the right has been spewing for years. It’s frustrating and worrisome.

In the past two weeks, I’ve played Roll for the Galaxy (this time with my husband), Five Tribes, Splendor, and Castles of Mad King Ludwig.

Splendor: I think nearly everyone we’ve played this with has gone out and bought it. It’s a gem-collecting game where you buy cards with gems on them and use those to buy more expensive cards. It’s very straightforward and easy to learn, but it is a lot of fun to play.

Castles of Mad King Ludwig: I first played this last May. Each player builds rooms on their castle, getting points for rooms and various bonuses. Players take turns as the “master builder,” when they get money from others. It’s a larger strategy game, but it’s not too difficult, and it’s quite fun. It’s not terribly fun with two players (as Carl and I have found out), but with three or four, it’s quite good. One of my favorites, but not one I get to pull out much.

Five Tribes (reg. version): Players drop meeples on the tiled board to perform different actions, gain resources, and take control of tiles. It’s unlike other games I’ve played, and it is hands down one of my favorites. Once you get the hang of it, it moves quickly, and it’s fun to try different strategies each time. This time, I went the resource route, which went super well.

I’ve discussed Roll for the Galaxy before, but I will say that Carl really liked it, and I think we may end up adding it to our collection.

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