BEANS, BEANS, BEANS!

As some of you are aware, I'm currently (and temporarily) living in Ireland (Limerick to be precise). I haven't found much in the way of board gaming here outside of Games Workshop stuff. A very few have heard of Settlers of Catan (and I even managed to get a game in with a fellow visiting from Germany) but not much else. I did, however bring a copy of Bohnanza with me and it has been a great success with all I've taught. I'm regularly asked if I'd like to play "Beans" and I plan on teaching them Pit next. I'll be leaving copies of both games behind, hopefully I'll have planted a seed here.

I should apologize for not getting this month's Essen photo report out sooner. Due to my recent travels I didn't actually get the photos myself until very late in November and so I was unable to get them to you as quickly as I had hoped. I decided to post more general pictures rather than focusing on specific games. If you're interested in detailed shots/descriptions of the games themselves, I direct you to The BoardGameGeek where you can find links to several reports on the fair.

I received plenty of responses to last month's Titan: The Arena puzzle and was pleased to see that nearly everyone who responded had the right solution. I'm not sure if this means that the puzzle was too easy or that if you didn't have the right answer, you had no clue at all. The Ricochet Robot puzzles have been well received so I'm interested in seeing the response to this month's puzzler. It was submitted by a reader and I must admit that it caused me some consternation trying to figure it out.

-Greg Aleknevicus

This month we present the second in a series of articles on obscure games. As it's Mr. Branham's kick at the can, you can be assured that they're a rather odd bunch and that the bits will be truly strange.

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