Saturday morning began with a debate over what to play (okay, it actually started with a fry-up) Tim wanted to play Puerto Rico at some point and was keen to play Twiglet, Dunk favoured Settlers fearing Twiglet would take over the weekend.
We eventually decided to go with Twiglet, which was brave as the only two previous 5-player games we had played had both lasted over 10 hours! I thought that seeing as we had all played it once before (even if it was ages ago for some of us) the game would be quicker, and fortunately I was right. It only took 5:15, literally half the length of the last game we played together as a group.
We played the Distant Suns expansion again, which I'm loving, and had a nice, fairly balanced game. The Wife got off to a swift start playing the Imperial strategy a couple of times and edging out into the lead, after that we generally took it before she had a chance, so we slowly started to catch up. Most of us managed to claim one or two of the public objectives so we were all around 3-5 VPs with The Wife out ahead on six or seven. Dunk was the aggressive race again (which suits his playing style well), and he had a run in with Tim fairly early on, which forced Tim to tool his area up to the nines with PDSs, scaring Dunk off. I've never been one for buying PDSs, but after the impression Tim's 6 PDSs had on Dunk (who had a fair armada featuring two Dreadnaughts) I'm coming around to them. The Wife and I and later Vicky and I had a little spat but generally nothing too vicious.
About four turns in, The Wife went for Mecatol Rex (which we all guessed was part of her secretive objective) but none of us had the will or the fleet to oust her from there. So it came to the end of a round with the Wife on seven points, three shy of winning. We were convinced she had met her secret objective (worth another two points) but it was clear that she couldn't meet any of the public objectives this time, so we were gearing up to take one of her homeworlds off her next turn - preventing her from claiming any objectives. When suddenly, out of nowhere, she reveals an Action Card which lets her refresh half of her exhausted planet cards. That freed up the ten resources needed to claim one of the public objectives and it's game over! It caught me completely by surprise. Nice :-)
Here's a snapshot of the game in progress. As usual click on the picture for a full-size view.