One of the few video game “failures” I’ve had is that with Civilization IV: Colonization. I never played the original game back in the 1990s so was something of a late starter to the party but it’s more of an economic simulator rather than a 4X strategy game given how vital the trading element is to the game. I reloaded it onto my laptop at the weekend to try it again and I’m still having the same degree of success I’ve had before! It’s so blimmin’ difficult.

Granted, getting a colony off the ground is fairly simply and expanding it across whatever continent you end up on is also facile. But getting your cities ready to revolt takes more effort and then when the revolution comes…it’s so goddam hard. I’ve been trying all weekend and the best I managed was a 12-soldier army vs a 36 soldier army. My failing this time was not to have stockpiled enough guns to conscript colonists.

It’s a nice game and it’s too bad that the only victory condition is to successfully revolt. For builder like me, I’d rather have some sort of alternative economic victory scenario like cornering the market in certain types of goods or victory over colonial rivals or taking out all the natives. I know it’s a game designed by Americans who would naturally want to bear out their “colonial experience” for want of another term but as it has had a world wide release…there must of other options. Perhaps I can find a mod or something.

Between that and Scarface on the Wii (finally on North Beach), I think six or seven years were seared from my life expectancy this weekend. A massive wobbly was thrown on Saturday which chased people out the house and Sunday I was just left alone. No successes had – only failures in the virtual world. But to jump back a day, Friday was a games night down in Brixton and tbf, the only games on offer were the usual Wii mix but I did join in on Boom Blox. I’ve pushed for the N64 to be dug out and dusted off for some different games; variety being the spice of life.

And Monday was the Griffin Treasure Hunt. After a bout of “can’t get out of bed syndrome”, I struggled to make it to Vauxhall for 11, completely ignoring/forgetting the fact the entire Victoria Line was closed for the weekend and Monday for…whatever it was that Tube Lines felt like doing. An emergency dash at Oxford Circus and Waterloo was in order but still got to the pub by 11.16.

The hunt itself was 50 cryptic clues stretched over a 10 mile (give or take) walk between the pub and the Globe Theatre via Kennington & Southwark. L’Isle de Yoshi was represented by me, Ceajay, Alex and Chris and although we came 6th out of 7 teams (who bothered to finish), we still scored 57/69. It was very hard work and despite having seven hours, we barely finished on time having stopped for lunch and a Tesco trip. I don’t know what else to write about it – it was long, there were no arguments and the street instructions were complicated in places but it made for an interesting day out.

Four day week, this week which is hopefully for the best although the weather is looking far from pleasant to enjoy properly. May itself was looking a rather empty month but the calendar is beginning to pick up. I need to host a dinner at home some point before the 25th, there’s a games night, Joey’s birthday and much, much more.

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