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Scythe» Forums » General

Subject: Is the Factory a big "Red Herring" rss

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Paul Ferguson
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I have played quite a few games of Scythe now, mostly 4-5 player, and I see the factory as a bit of a pointless focus. The reason I feel this way is that the factory cards are good, but they are not as good as your upgraded actions and the effort to get to the center with your character requires a lot of actions.

Sure it counts as 3 tiles for end game scoring, but I could send my character to pick up more encounters in the same time I have sent them to the center, and spread out workers and mechs to control hexes and only have 2 less for end game scoring than if I was on the center hex. Seeing that there are only 3/28 objectives that relate to the factory I find it a bit of a odd focal point.
 
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Greg
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To me, it's like an objective card. If I can do it fine, if not fine.

If you can get there early enough and get a good pick of factory cards, then it may benefit you because you may choose a card that works best with your strategy, and the move of 2 with possibly +1 with speed can allow a character to get to encounters faster, or allow a single mech perhaps move into a surprise combat vs. another single mech/character in a vulnerable state.


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trevor

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It really depends on your game. It's not always that important to take.

Mostly I find that I get it mid game and use it to grab an easier star on something I neglected (say if I didn't enlist most of the game, grab the easy enlist card). In most of our games the first person to get to the factory is NOT the person who has it at the end of the game for the "3 hex" bonus

Don't discount the value of double movement though.....
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J Kaemmer
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You're not entirely incorrect. Oftentimes it isn't super helpful to go to the factory, your time could be better spent elsewhere. So here's the reasons why you might want to consider it:

1- Objectives, as previously stated.

2- Supplement weak actions, some of the Factory cards are very good and can do an amazing job rishing the end game. Ones that allow you to build, deploy, or recruit can be great to a) do what your faction mat sucks at b)double move to easier get encounters. Rusviet atruggles to obtain wood in higher player count games, so a card that costs a combat card or any 2 resources would be huge step up from player mat actions that cost 4. The double move is the easiest way to grab encounters so it theres less opportunity cost to working on your mech,structure, or enlist actions as tou can now do both for incredibly cheap.

3-Combat positioning, you are now within striking distance of all 6 tunnels and several other hexes. With Submerge or Seafaring you are within reach of everyone's home base areas. The added range of the double move likewise helps.

4-Surprise combat, with speed+1 you can triple move which can be hard to predict

5-Aggro, why waste actions to chase down your enemies when they can come to you!

6-End game scoring, the 3 for 1 nature of the factory makes it far more valuable then you think. There is an upper limit on hexes you can control at the end of a game (8workers, 4 mechs, 1 character, 4 structures). Realistically, you wont get all 17. I think theost I've ever gotten was 13. The reason for this is that it is very inefficient and risky to spread out like that. A concentrated and easily defensible force can score its worth even more so than if they were alone. 3 is quite a bit when 17 is the normal max. In higher player count games, real estate is VERY valuable and much scarcer. Not to mention hexes are worth nearly as much as stars. At 4 points a hex, you bet your ass the Factory is qorth it.

7-End game combat, to get the largest advantage possible when ending the game on combat you should try to swing the Factory and dump a bunch of workers on the way. Three mech moves dispensing workers and hitting the factory can swing up to 7 territories (28 coins) in your favor. Taking the factory is a 12 coin hit to your opponent. Not insignificant when an average winning score is 70 something.

I.mostly focus on the factory for #6, #2, and #7. But the others are nice if you haven't placed any combat stars yet.

Factions that will likely be MOST interested- Rusviet, Saxony, and Nordic. Probably in that order.
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Forsman
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I am with the rest of you 1st one to the factory gets the bounes but to defend it is not a good goal. Get in get out, use it not let others use the enlist bonus on you
 
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Thibaut Palfer-Sollier
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The point swing can be huge.
There are reports of games where the leader has a 20+ gold advantage over the second. Well, the Factory can be a 24 gold swing in your favor.
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Sky Zero
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Increase the # of factory card options to make it more enticing and show what's available at game start. There's some extremely powerful factory cards that if I know they're in the stack, I'm sprinting to get there.
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Ian Liddle
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MadVikingKing wrote:
I am with the rest of you 1st one to the factory gets the bounes but to defend it is not a good goal. Get in get out, use it not let others use the enlist bonus on you

Camping with the intent to lose (solo mech / character) and some workers can make for a nice affordable dilemma for your opponents, especially if you get the production factory card and can get to 8 workers without any downsides.
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Inno Van
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skyzero wrote:
Increase the # of factory card options to make it more enticing and show what's available at game start. There's some extremely powerful factory cards that if I know they're in the stack, I'm sprinting to get there.


Red can sprint first to the factory every time ...but should they? Currently they can take that gamble and see if it pays off, or instead focus on building their early economy. The game is currently balanced to make that not a sure thing.

Since Red wins the factory race every time, making the Factory cards more juicy and less random would be unbalancing. It's great to see Red sprint to the center for crap cards, then regret not instead building up their economy early like everyone else through the rest of the early and mid-game. Red should not be given a sure thing for gambling on the Factory.

Whateverer card Red takes is the best card there. So when you see Red choose a mediocre card, you know that every other card at the Factory is even worse, and it's not worth visiting much this game.

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Matthias Reitberger
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I played rusviet with industrial.
I produced 3 times, getting all workers out and the speed mech on the village. Then move your character to take the encounter on the oil field and the mech to take the workers from the village to mountain and oil field. Leave 3 workers on the mountain and take your mech and 5 workers on the oil field. Produce again build the township mech.
Move your character and a mech with 1 worker from the oil field over the village to the factory.
You get the factory card, have 5 oil that can give you 2 upgrades with an income of 3 coins each.
 
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Darrell Goodridge
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Innovan wrote:
skyzero wrote:
Increase the # of factory card options to make it more enticing and show what's available at game start. There's some extremely powerful factory cards that if I know they're in the stack, I'm sprinting to get there.


Whateverer card Red takes is the best card there. So when you see Red choose a mediocre card, you know that every other card at the Factory is even worse, and it's not worth visiting much this game.



I agree with the rest of your post but disagree on this point. Last night, all 4 choices were seemingly very good, and I, as the Rusviets, may have chosen poorly. So what might have seemed like a mediocre card to the others looked like a good idea at the time to me. When in fact, all 4 cards were worth taking.

Not to mention that different factions are looking for different things.
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Thibaut Palfer-Sollier
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With Rusviet + Industrial, I would try this :
- Produce
- Move character to village and one worker to the mountain
- Produce, deploy Township mech
- Move character to Factory and one worker to the mountain
- Produce, deploy Speed mech (unless you got a killer Factory card)
I know, only 5 workers and no use of the Rusviet ability yet. But you get to the Factory 2 turns earlier without hurting your engine that much.
Don't know if it is worth it.
 
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Matthias Reitberger
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Don't think it's worth getting there earlier. I haven't seen much contest in my games yet. As long as you are first and your actions are rather effective to this point there is no need to hurry.
 
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Thibaut Palfer-Sollier
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With the Rusviet, it seems to me that it is much more a question of getting a good Factory card earlier that you may be able to spam with the Rusviet ability.
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Matthias Reitberger
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I took one that allowed me to pay two coins for a building and a popularity. I wouldn't have been able to afford the cost earlier, had to do upgrades with get me 3c. I got it early enough to know that I don't need to use my upgrades to make buildings cheaper.
All those factory cards have some cost to use them, you won't be able to take them as early as possible and then use them multiple times in a row.
 
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Eric Hogue
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My first game, it was pay 1 resource to get a power, heart, and coin. I don't think that has limited usage; I probably should have used it more.
 
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Mad Halfling
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I've only played one game and one Automa game, but I don't think so. Nor do I think it's essential - like many paths in Scythe there are times it works for you and is extremely helpful and times when it may not be necessary. When I played multiplayer, I didn't absolutely rush to it, but I was over the river before either of my opponents (they were concentrating on building resources and enlisting) and moved whenever I could. I also got this card:

EricHogue wrote:
My first game, it was pay 1 resource to get a power, heart, and coin. I don't think that has limited usage; I probably should have used it more.


and it was very useful to me. I won fairly convincingly, and though I had the advantage of one Automa game over them, and having read the rules loads of times when helping with the proofreading, I think that factory card helped. It gave me a steady drip-feed of extra coins, plus the popularity and power meant that I could counter-attack 2 mechs, a character and 2 workers (I sacrificed the initial combat to deplete my opponent of combat cards, so I could end up with my resources back) and I could hit him hard, absorb the popularity loss, then attack the other player who was maxed out in power. Then at what I thought was the end of the game, I stepped a mech 3 spots onto the factory and managed to finish the game before it was attacked - another nice points bonus.

But then the second player, IIRC, never reached the factory.
 
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Greg Lott
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I have not played this game yet, and typically a game like this is an instant purchase for me. I'm an admitted "hype-whore". However, when I saw this on the shelf at my flgs, I hesitated long enough for the opportunity to pass (man, those things flew off the shelf!). That center spot is why... it reminds me of Eclipse, a game I love, but the "king of the mountain" feel that the game eventually devolves into keeps me from trying to get it to the table anymore. Just looking at the board for Scythe, I fear the same thing: A game full of tough strategic decisions all to mean nothing when everyone piles all their dudes on the center tile at the end.

Hopefully I'm wrong?
 
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GAF Blizzard
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ferris1971 wrote:
I have not played this game yet, and typically a game like this is an instant purchase for me. I'm an admitted "hype-whore". However, when I saw this on the shelf at my flgs, I hesitated long enough for the opportunity to pass (man, those things flew off the shelf!). That center spot is why... it reminds me of Eclipse, a game I love, but the "king of the mountain" feel that the game eventually devolves into keeps me from trying to get it to the table anymore. Just looking at the board for Scythe, I fear the same thing: A game full of tough strategic decisions all to mean nothing when everyone piles all their dudes on the center tile at the end.

Hopefully I'm wrong?

The center tile gives you an endgame bonus of 6-12 coins. I feel like many games are won for other reasons, unless you already have the factory and LOSE it for a big point swing of up to 24 coins.

If anything, I think I've seen people suggest the factory is not always fought over.
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Darrell Goodridge
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ferris1971 wrote:
I have not played this game yet, and typically a game like this is an instant purchase for me. I'm an admitted "hype-whore". However, when I saw this on the shelf at my flgs, I hesitated long enough for the opportunity to pass (man, those things flew off the shelf!). That center spot is why... it reminds me of Eclipse, a game I love, but the "king of the mountain" feel that the game eventually devolves into keeps me from trying to get it to the table anymore. Just looking at the board for Scythe, I fear the same thing: A game full of tough strategic decisions all to mean nothing when everyone piles all their dudes on the center tile at the end.

Hopefully I'm wrong?


In my games thus far, usually the first 1-2 people to reach the factory voluntarily move off because they are not ready to fight yet. And the 3rd player to reach it usually isn't in a position to win even with holding control, so it hasn't been an issue for us yet. I haven't had a sense of this being a "king of the mountain" game at all.
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Chris Broggi
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I once lost a game because I moved my mech to the factory. I saw that the game was ending soon, so I moved a mech to the factory for bonus points. My son on his next turn, attacked my mech, giving him his final star and the factory hex. Afterwards I realized that if I had not moved to the factory, I would be too far from him for him to attack. He wouldn't have gotten his sixth star and I probably would have won.
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J Kaemmer
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Cardboardjunkie wrote:
ferris1971 wrote:
I have not played this game yet, and typically a game like this is an instant purchase for me. I'm an admitted "hype-whore". However, when I saw this on the shelf at my flgs, I hesitated long enough for the opportunity to pass (man, those things flew off the shelf!). That center spot is why... it reminds me of Eclipse, a game I love, but the "king of the mountain" feel that the game eventually devolves into keeps me from trying to get it to the table anymore. Just looking at the board for Scythe, I fear the same thing: A game full of tough strategic decisions all to mean nothing when everyone piles all their dudes on the center tile at the end.

Hopefully I'm wrong?


In my games thus far, usually the first 1-2 people to reach the factory voluntarily move off because they are not ready to fight yet. And the 3rd player to reach it usually isn't in a position to win even with holding control, so it hasn't been an issue for us yet. I haven't had a sense of this being a "king of the mountain" game at all.


I strongly agree with this opinion.

Factory control is not the "end-all, be-all" and since fighting is rather aversive to most players, I would argue that camping a few guys on the Factory will probably hold it for just about the entire game.
 
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Greg Lott
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iswearihaveajob wrote:
Cardboardjunkie wrote:
ferris1971 wrote:
I have not played this game yet, and typically a game like this is an instant purchase for me. I'm an admitted "hype-whore". However, when I saw this on the shelf at my flgs, I hesitated long enough for the opportunity to pass (man, those things flew off the shelf!). That center spot is why... it reminds me of Eclipse, a game I love, but the "king of the mountain" feel that the game eventually devolves into keeps me from trying to get it to the table anymore. Just looking at the board for Scythe, I fear the same thing: A game full of tough strategic decisions all to mean nothing when everyone piles all their dudes on the center tile at the end.

Hopefully I'm wrong?


In my games thus far, usually the first 1-2 people to reach the factory voluntarily move off because they are not ready to fight yet. And the 3rd player to reach it usually isn't in a position to win even with holding control, so it hasn't been an issue for us yet. I haven't had a sense of this being a "king of the mountain" game at all.


I strongly agree with this opinion.

Factory control is not the "end-all, be-all" and since fighting is rather aversive to most players, I would argue that camping a few guys on the Factory will probably hold it for just about the entire game.


I've now played the game and will admit that my concern is unwarranted. You want to reach the factory, but there's no real reason to hold it. So no king of the mountain scenario here...
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Alex G
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The way I see it, factory card can help you finish objectives that don't align well with your board. If for example "build" is expensive for you and doesn't bring a lot of coins, you could grab a factory card that allows building and use it in your engine.
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