My family is currently addicted to the game Settlers of Catan. We've played three times so far. Tonight will be the fourth time. I haven't won yet and even though I'm a sore loser I still have fun. It's sort of a cross between Risk and Monopoly. There's some strategy involved and some luck.
We had a bit of fun the first night when we realized that everybody was stacking their game pieces (settlements, cities and roads) in ways that corresponded with their professions.
THE CIVIL ENGINEER
MY HUSBAND MADE A PENIS (GO FIGURE)
Building is key. You need resources to build. You get resources from rolls that correspond to hexes you have buildings on. Building is key.
You can also trade resources with other players. At least until you get close to winning. At that point nobody wants to help you advance. They all turn on you. Of course I've only witnessed this second hand. I've never experienced it because I've never come even close to winning (pout - have I mentioned I'm a bad loser before?) Trading keeps everyone involved and interested in every turn.
At any point that a 7 is rolled the robber is activated and anybody with over 7 resource cards loses half of them. This is brutal when you roll it on yourself. This keeps the incentive high to build instead of hoard cards. Things move fast.
So, tonight I've cooked up some chili, baked a pineapple angel food cake and purchased some fruity malt beverages. I think tonight is my night. You see, I've read some strategy guides. They're sure to help. Shhhhh....... don't tell anyone. One of the keys to success is to keep a low profile while pointing out to everybody else how awesome someone else is doing.