There was a purpose to playing Axis & Allies: To see how the kids reacted to longer games. And four turns later here are the results:
Our girl is too young for long games that involve long term planning. She did fine on the turn-to-turn, right now, actions including an interesting and spirited defense of the Suez Canal, but her long term strategy was non-existent and actually determined by Barb and her brother.
Our boy is near the right age. He did fine turn-to-turn, especially once he understood that attacking can be worse than doing nothing. With each turn his planning got better; by the end he had a very obvious plan and it may have succeeded-build up a lot of infantry and stockpile tanks, while wearing Germany down with the occasional attack.
In the end, we packed up the game because our girl playing the UK had had enough and I had learned what I needed to learn. When Twilight Imperium arrives I know that the boy will be able to play and the girl will be interested enough to play. Because Twilight Imperium starts off slower she will have the time to learn or find a path that suits her, such as trade or technology. The nice thing about Twilight Imperium is the multiple ways to win and slower start, nobody starts off in the middle of a war fighting for survival on turn one.
Done for the day, we went for a walk at night. Big Rapids is a two towns-in school and out of school. In school, the roads are always packed and the town has this feeling of being crowded. Out of school, the town has a feeling of being empty. Personally I would prefer a middle ground and something other than fast food everywhere, but that is me. I took these pictures during our night walk.
The nice thing about the college kids being gone is that trees and flowers can bloom without being molested. Seriously, when they are here there are enough dipshits that the phrase, “This is why we can’t have nice things” can be uttered on a regular basis. With them gone, nice things can flourish for a short time.
This, for those of you who do not live here, is the busiest intersection in town. This intersection leads to the highway, the college, downtown and out of town. When the students are here, this photo would be nothing but vehicles and unhappy faces in most of them. With them gone and at night, this was the most vehicles in one place. If you look closely you can see fast food signs, as this corner is the start of restaurant row-nothing but fast food until you get downtown-where there isn’t much else.
Lastly, this is a section of the main road, this section run past most of main campus on one side and special person campus-pharmacy, optometry, and nursing-on the side of the road where I took this photo. Notice the road is empty. Notice the sidewalk is empty. Notice in the distance McDonalds. If the students were in town, the road would be packed with cars to the horizon, the sidewalk would have people on it, and there would be a visible line into and out of McDonalds.
Like I said, Big Rapids is two different towns-this version is quiet, empty, and kind of sad.