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"You Never Told Me That Rule!" -- Rules You Most Certainly Told Them.
Dave Lartigue
United States
Springfield
Massachusetts
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Every game has at least one rule that, if you don't get, makes much of the action pointless or ensures that you will lose. When teaching the game to new people, you will be sure to stress that rule over and over, since so much hinges onit. And, invariably, at some point the new player will claim fervently that no, you NEVER told him that rule because if you had, he would NEVER have made that play. Let's hear the game, the rule, and if you wish, the story.
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101. Board Game: The Princes of Machu Picchu [Average Rating:6.99 Overall Rank:738]
Matt Smith
United States
Orion
Michigan
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The rule: end-game points for goods symbols on your sacrifice cards are based on your incan workers, not your goods on hand.

I know I said this when teaching the game, but one player started hoarding resources towards the end of the game, and kept moving his workers to the Sun Clock, which removes them from the board. When we calculated scores at the end, he was surprised to find out his pile of goods was worthless. He ended up in dead last, and was not happy.

Lesson learned: teach the two ways to get points in this game, then reinforce it with an example.
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102. Board Game: Metropolys [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:449]
Laszlo Molnar
Hungary
Budapest
Hungary
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It's about the fifth turn in the game.
So I place a 5. My wife places a 7. His wife places an 8. He places a 10. Then I place my 11 and claim that building.
He looks at me. 'You started the turn, you can't place a higher building than me!'
I repeat him you can have several whole rounds until a building is claimed.
He looks at me with the face "Come on if you told me that before..."
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103. Board Game: Hammer of the Scots [Average Rating:7.59 Overall Rank:175]
John Culp
United States
Gillette
Wyoming
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recently had one..

going through wintering and replacement points, I made a big deal about how both the english and scottish get new units. english get fresh, bright and shiny full-strength units from the levy in the england.

the scots have to build new ones using replacement points.

then I went into this length demonstration using wallace and the two infantry units in Fife. taking one away and showing that he'd have 3 RP in fife, and could a) repair units already there b)build a new unit (at which point I pulled a scottish unit from his pool and place it in fife) and c) using RP to repair the "new" unit.


first winter, he didn't build any...when I commented on it, he looked me straight in the eye and said "you never said that" "yes I did...we did that whole demonstration thing on it, took like 5 minutes JUST for that ..." "no you didn't"

ugh, no harm, I said whatever, you can build a unit now if you want...he was almost angry with me though
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104. Board Game: Magic Realm [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:646]
Patrick Wall
United States
LOS ANGELES
California
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Every Rule.
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105. Board Game: Red November [Average Rating:6.38 Overall Rank:1119]
Jordan Booth
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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"Don't hoard items because there are cards that come up that will make everyone discard down to four."

Dude hoards anyway.

Card comes out.

"OOooooh, I thought it only made the person who drew it discard."
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106. Board Game: Small World [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:108] [Average Rating:7.42 Unranked]
Jordan Booth
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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(also Vinci)

"OK, to take a territory you just need to count how many pieces of cardboard are on the spot and add two."

"OK, so how much for this spot"

"Well it is a base of two and it has two other tokens, so 4"

"OK" (places tokens) "Now how much for this one?"

"(sigh) Each space takes two plus however many tokens are there, so that one is just two"

"ok, cool. So how many for this one?"

""BLARGH! Why can't you do simple addition/counting!?!"

This one is even worse because it isn't just telling them a rule once that they forgot or didn't process. This is people willfully not listening to the same thing you are repeating every 10 seconds. They are only listening for the answer and not to anything else you say.
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107. Board Game: Reef Encounter [Average Rating:7.19 Overall Rank:317]
Theresa Zoren
United States
Havre
Montana
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Corals need to be at least two strong before they can attack! I think I had to repeat that 4 times the other night to one of the players
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108. Board Game: Powerboats [Average Rating:6.73 Overall Rank:937]
Erik van der Weide
Netherlands
Ede
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What do you mean, I can't remove two dice at the same time? I'll hit that island if I don't!

Okay, in that case, I'll re-throw all of my dice... woah, that's a lot of threes, lemme throw again...

No? Then I'll go this way, so I will get three damage points, and I'm lined up nicely for the finish line... What? Go that way? But I don't wanna go that way! I don't mind getting a bit of damage. You never told me you must go another direction to avoid damage!
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109. Board Game: Tikal [Average Rating:7.36 Overall Rank:153]
Matthias Knöchel
Germany
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"ok you have to draw and put a tile on the board first and THEN make your move"


---------

*makes his move*

"you forgot to place a tile...."
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110. Board Game: Last Night on Earth: The Zombie Game [Average Rating:7.10 Overall Rank:343] [Average Rating:7.10 Unranked]
Jon Grey
United States
Los Angeles
California
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"Uh...YAY! Two 2's! I killed your Zombie!"

"Wha? No, I rolled a 3."

"But I got doubles and a higher roll!"

"What? How is 2 higher than a 3?"

"Err 2 plus 2 is 4, stupid!"

"Damn.. I'm 'stupid' now. You don't add the dice, dude, you choose the higher roll. For a Wound, Heroes need to get a higher roll AND a double."

*drum roll*

"You Never Told Me That Rule!"
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111. Board Game: Munchkin [Average Rating:6.03 Overall Rank:2271] [Average Rating:6.03 Unranked]
Nick O'Leary
United States
Dist of Columbia
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Me:"See the gold pieces listed on the cards? If you trade in 1000 GP, you go up a level, but it can't be the winning level. Got it?"

(After I discard 1000 GP to go up a level)

New Player: How did you do that?

Me: Remember? You can trade in 1000 GP to go up a level

New Player: (Geeklist title...)!!!

(Later in the game...)

New Player: I discard 2000 GP to go up 2 levels and win the game.

(I smack my head on the table. Repeatedly)
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112. Board Game: Citadels [Average Rating:7.19 Overall Rank:215]
Daniël Muilwijk
Netherlands
Zeist
Utrecht
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This somehow also belongs in this topic.

I was visiting a friend of mine and his girlfriend suggested to play a game of Citadels. His girlfriend had played the game her whole vacation with her girlfriends and they all realy liked it.

When it was time for everyone to pick a role she just dealt the characters instead of letting everyone choose one.

I repeat: When it was time for everyone to pick a role she just dealt the characters instead of letting everyone choose one.

It appeared that they had played the game this way the whole vacation. So much for tactics and strategy!
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113. Board Game: Agricola [Average Rating:8.12 Overall Rank:6]
Caleb Wynn
United States
Adairsville
Georgia
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A couple of months ago I taught a few friends how to play this one and I very specifically explained the end game scoring so that he understood what he needed to score points. I also mentioned that your card explained what you needed and the points it gave you. I also mentioned it a couple more times during the game.

Well, come the end of the game we are counting up our resources and we get to vegetables and I hear, "You never told me I needed vegetables!"

Argh, I most certainly did, multiple times. Same guy does this all the time for other games too. I just disregard his comments on rules now.
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114. Board Game: RoboRally [Average Rating:7.21 Overall Rank:222]
Steve Robb
United Kingdom
Prudhoe
Northumberland
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One of the following:

* Driving through board lasers doesn't damage you unless you end your register phase within one. "Hey, you've just taken damage by driving through that laser!"

* Your robot does not automatically steer around corners when you drive it straight along a conveyor belt. And similar:

* Driving onto a conveyor corner space does not rotate your robot, but being conveyed onto it does. This often gets new players.
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115. Board Game: Fluxx [Average Rating:5.73 Overall Rank:4519] [Average Rating:5.73 Unranked]
sam zitin
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
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"It's Draw a card then Play a card"

plays card first, doesn't try to draw

"No no no, DRAW A CARD then play a card"

"ooooh, right, how could I forget that, there are only TWO FREAKING RULES IN THE GAME"
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116. Board Game: Alibi [Average Rating:4.83 Overall Rank:10505]
Anthony Sheets
United States
Hedgesville
West Virginia
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Meld? Whats a meld?
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117. Board Game: Battlestar Galactica: Pegasus Expansion [Average Rating:7.79 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.79 Unranked]
ackmondual
United States
SoCal
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If you get executed and you are a cylon, you ONLY reveal one loyalty card that says "you are a cylon" on it!

The remaining, face down loyalty cards are supposed to go to one other player of the executed player's choice (if at 6 distance or less). Keep the suspense alive!

EDIT: If also playing with the Exodus expansion, you also wouldn't want to give away information about what Personal Goals or Final Five cards that were passed off.
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118. Board Game: Samurai [Average Rating:7.44 Overall Rank:125]
ackmondual
United States
SoCal
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Not a rule, but he was certainly told many times....

After placing his first "samurai 7" token, we told him there are no 7s in the game, it's either just 1s, 2s, or 3s. He proceeded to repeat the same mistake twice more despite being reminded of that each time that the 1s just look like 7s, and that there are no 7s
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119. Board Game: Dominion: Seaside [Average Rating:8.11 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.11 Unranked]
Branko K.
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- So you see, you can only get ONE gold coin when you play a Pirate Ship, regardless of how many coins you trashed.

- (plays with the playmat) Sure, sure..

- So even though you trash three coins from other players, it's only one coin for you, not thr..

- Yeah, GOT IT, let's just play already.

(ten minutes later)

- Yaay! That's one-two-three gold coins for me...

- Stop, you should take just one coin.

- What do you mean, "just one coin"??
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120. Board Game: Carcassonne: Abbey & Mayor [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.13 Unranked]
Duncan
New Zealand
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Farmers can be scored immediatly at 1 pt/city when connected to a farm containing a barn- I use it - once to get around 200 pts off one farm in a game. Everyone else just forgets it
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121. Board Game: Munchkin [Average Rating:6.03 Overall Rank:2271] [Average Rating:6.03 Unranked]
Joshua Love
United States
Clarkston
Washington
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I played many Munchkin games last night for the first time, and I played with several people. My wife's sister was extremely slow to catch on... But she ended up becoming the most excited about the game, and actually won several games in a row after she finally caught on. I was thinking of this thread the entire first game we played.


"Ok, so you add up all the bonuses in front of you." *Points to bonus cards in front of her* "And then add that total, to your current level, which is represented by these chips here. That makes up your total combat value THEN you compare your final combat value to the monsters level. If your combat value is higher, you win and kill it."

"... So... What again?"

"Ok, so you add up all the bonuses in front of you." *Points to bonus cards in front of her* "And then add that total, to your current level, which is represented by these chips here. That makes up your total combat value. THEN you compare your final combat value to the monsters level. If your combat value is higher, you win and kill it."

"Oh! I got it now, thanks! So I can kill this guy now?" *points to level 16 monster*

"No, you only have a +4 bonus from your armor and your one weapon, and you're only a level 3. 4 plus 3 is not 16. You can ask for help to kill him though."

"Why?"

"..."

"So did I kill him?"

"No... No you didn't... Next turn."
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122. Board Game: Kill Doctor Lucky [Average Rating:6.17 Overall Rank:1682]
Ryan W. Shipman
United States
Michigan
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Late one night...

Player 1: So I'll move from the Lancaster room to the Master Suite and search. Dr. Lucky moves, and it's my turn again. I'll play this move one to the Nursery and search. Hey look it's my turn again....

Fast forward 5 minutes.

Player 1: Now that I'm in the Lilac room, I'll make a murder attempt with the Bad Cream.
Player 2: Really? You can follow him room to room and horde cards?
Player 1: Yes, it's in the rules.
Player 2: That's retarded. I don't like this game.
Player 1: Why not?
Player 2: Because that's a retarded rule. It breaks the gameplay.
Player 3: I don't think he likes it because he isn't winning.

Silence
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123. Board Game: Cloud 9 [Average Rating:6.48 Overall Rank:1237]
Mike Hulsebus
United States
Ann Arbor
Michigan
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"No matter what you roll and how many cards you would have to play, a wild card replaces all cards. So if I roll Purple Green Green, I can choose to play just one wild card by itself instead of playing those cards. And you don't have to play your wild card, you want to save it until you're alone in the balloon so it only helps you."

Later, on one of the easy rolls where everyone is in the balloon
/rolls red&yellow
/plays Red card and Wild card
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124. Board Game: Notre Dame [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:140]
KJ Mustermann
Germany
Kiel
Unspecified
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Listen up everybody. In every game so far someone missed that rule, so pay attention. You'r only allowed to take a tile of the same color twice if you have one tile of all colors. Or in other words: think of it as collecting sets, and you'r only allowed to start a new set if your previous sets are completed

I allways thought the explanation with sets should be pretty clear, but in every single game with 2/3 newbe's some forgets it and is really pissed that he can't get that money tile to pay one of the card, but at least they remember i told the rule
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125. Board Game: DVONN [Average Rating:7.42 Overall Rank:239]
Allan Mertner
United Kingdom
London
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I buy boardgames all the time. I love boardgames :-)
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Dvonn is an excellent abstract, with very simple rules.

One of those rules is that you can only move pieces that are not completely surrounded, which is why it's a good thing to have a few edge pieces in the beginning.

During a game with a relative newbie, i have to mention this all the time, typically progressing something like this:
- "Sorry, please choose a piece that isn't completely surrounded"
- "Remember the rule that you can't move that piece"
- "It's a simple rule, really: Please choose another one to move"
- "Remember The Rule..."

And then I make a sign that I just hoist when appropriate
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