Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Making My Own "Tabletop Day" Ritual in 1.5 Hours

[Thanks to Geek and Sundry for organizing Tabletop Day! Thanks to Shut Up and Sit Down for bringing this game to my attention! And thanks to my local FLGS Gator Games for hosting this event! Even with their table limitations, they held the Tabletop Day flag high!]

One and a half hours. That's all the time I spent this past Tabletop Day in celebration. Other family and fatherly duties consumed much of my day, so to have some time left was appreciated. Family always comes first, so to have time for Tabletop Day was a well-deserved bonus.

The first half of that time was spent just walking around my local FLGS, wandering aimlessly with no agenda. I browsed by the same shelves,with the same games. I passed by the table (the store was small), already packed with players; half of them were getting slaughtered in Elder Sign, while the other half paired off to play some Magic. My first thought was, "I don't have much time. I should get in a game, but there's no room on the table, and the current games are lengthy." I began to think my Tabletop Day celebration was doomed to become another typical FLGS visit. That's when I saw it.

Found you, you sexy wooden minx!

Lying on a pedestal of board games was Click Clack Lumberjack, a game that has eluded my grasp many times in this very store. To see it there in plain view on this, the Day of Tabletop...it was a sign. I picked up the game, cradling it in the palm of my hand like a golden idol. It had a good weight, full of future enjoyment and fun. And then I knew what must be done.

Not only must I buy it, but I must open it here and now. It is...the "Tabletop Day" way.

Challenge Accepted

Like any great challenge, however, I was met with hurdles. For many, this involved physical and mental hardships. To me, I was third in line; the first two customers had MANY items to buy, so I painfully skipped in place, practically giddy with excitement for what I would do to the game after purchase.

With the "trials" behind me, I turned to the rectangular table, my prize in tow. As if the Tabletop heavens knew of my plans, customers parted like some famous sea, and a spot was available. I sat down slowly, and propped the game before me, setting the stage for what transpired next.

"What game is that?" "Is it fun?" "It looks like Jenga."

"No," I said, with a lofty and soothing James Earl Jones voice, "it's BETTER than Jenga."

Half an hour to go. There wasn't much time left.

This is a happy mess waiting to happen...

I carefully emptied the box on the table, assembling the great tree passionately amid a crowd of stares. When done, I wielded the mighty plastic ax and casually asked, "who wants to play?"

I'd tap that. Yeah, I'll let myself out...

Striking Wood

The first game was a fitting start. Players were apprehensive of their strikes, hoping their power conservation would yield many points in return. This worked in favor for one, securing his victory. The second game brought more players, and shook the tree in disarray as they took more confident swings at the plastic bark. In the end, many limbs fell, and another took the victory.

Game 3: The forage is strong in me.

Ten minutes left, and the third and final game began. With the experience of the two games prior, I swung my ax with a magnitude of force, felling 3 pieces of bark in two swings. The player across from me gazed in a mixture of amazement and terror: "How did you DO that," he exclaimed. After everyone else had their turn, the ax was in my hands again, and I deftly swung again, earning 3 more pieces. "How are you DOING that," now completely bewildered.

BARK BARK BARK! It's so...ruff.

The game continued on and on, my skill level ever increasing until the last piece of bark fell. I stood up, towering above them all and bellowed "I have EIGHTEEN POINTS, and NO TREE CORES." Like a strong gust of wind, everyone threw up their hands in defeat.

A Fitting End

And with that astounding spectacle, I put away Click Clack Lumberjack in its box, held it to my side, and bid farewell to my strangers-turned-comrades on this festive Tabletop Day. My mind, to this day, can't wrap around what transpired: I bought a game in a FLGS AND played it immediately in the store. This...this...was what Tabletop Day meant to me; the ability to draw random people together with some analog game, laughing and having a good time.

Plus, cool swag for participating!

I'm ready for you, goblins!!

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