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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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I know this has been addressed before, but I need to express my frustrations.

My game group has pretty much thrown RC out - banned me from bringing it. They didn't say so in so many words... but it was pretty clear they're frustrated with it. I've brought it a half dozen times. For the most part we've played with four players. (and a couple of times with 5 - me playing as the Game Adjudicator and making suggestions.)

And it's just IMPOSSIBLE to beat.

Cursed Island is Impossible.
Cannibal Island is Impossible.
Rescue Jenny is Impossible.
Volcano Island is Impossible.
(and this includes trying the scenarios two or three times.)

We FINALLY beat Castaways, but that was barely by the skin of our teeth, and we were even using Friday!

I've looked through the rules, multiple times. I've read the FAQ multiple times. I've read the forums multiple times. We are playing it as it is supposed to be played to the best of my knowledge.

*I* LIKE the game. It's tough, sure, but always feels "doable" solo'd or with two people.

But four.....

Is this REALLY THAT HARD?





 
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Matt Albritton
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Tupelo
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I feel that Cursed Island is a bit easier than Castaways. We won it on our first four player attempt. However, I did have prior knowledge of the scenario by playing it solo a few times.

I know you've read the FAQ, but make sure you are putting fog on empty island spaces and not just discovered tiles. You usually have a lot of time before fog is an issue.

We haven't played any of the later scenarios with four players yet.
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Darin Bolyard
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Oak Grove
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Is your group focusing on the scenario objectives, or are there players constantly pouring precious resources into unnecessary actions? For example, are there players who always explore just because they think it's fun, or because there's a chance to get something good, despite something else being more necessary at the moment? Are there always players taking unnecessary risks, like hunting in the first round or two with only 1 or 2 weapon strength even when gathering, or building the dam is a much safer option? Essentially, I'm asking if there are players in your group who play for themselves without regard to the group's needs in the game? It is a cooperative game, and one that suffers greatly when players are not working together cohesively.

Moreover, each scenario generally has at least one crux if you hope to win...Castaways = shelter + roof, Cursed Island = place fog on unexplored tiles, etc. Though nothing will guarantee victory in any scenario. Still, if your group hasn't caught on to some of these things...you're gonna have a bad time.
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S. R.
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Hmm.
I almost always play with four characters, when I am playing solo. And I played each and every scenario as long as it took, until I beat them. Except for Jenny. Beat it once, because I misread a rule (that was long before I did the translation), and never beat it again, afterwards. I think the game carries a grudge.

From experience, I can say that all scenarios have differing difficulty. Also, one scenario can have differing difficulty with different player counts - or so I have come to realize.

However, all of them are doable with 4. Some of them easily, once you know on what to concentrate. Others are highly unlikely.

See, the thing is, you got to find out what is really essential, and then ignore the rest as long as possible, only putting out fires you cannot ignore any longer...
...okay, that is not new information, I guess. But once you have that figured out, the rest simply comes down to what the game has in store for you, regarding card texts. If you know how to beat it, the only thing that can keep you from winning is bad luck (die rolls or card draws, or even both).

The biggest problem is that the game provides a smorgasbord of possibilities. And you want to use them, preferrably all of them. But that is not how the game works. It presents you with 24 options, and lets you figure out that only 4 of those are not only necessary this time, they are the ONLY things you should concentrate on, as long as possible...


Oh, and Cursed Island is WAY easier than Castaways - especially with 4. Once you grok how to play it, the game will have a hard time keeping you from winning that one.
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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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Kubigaruma wrote:


I know you've read the FAQ, but make sure you are putting fog on empty island spaces and not just discovered tiles. You usually have a lot of time before fog is an issue.


Perhaps maybe this was one of the problems. I'm also assuming the volcanic ash in the Volcano Island scenario is treated the same way?
 
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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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dbolyard wrote:
Is your group focusing on the scenario objectives, or are there players constantly pouring precious resources into unnecessary actions?


Honestly, I think there's probably a lot of this going on, too. I know one of their complaints was never feeling like they had enough resources to do anything - so I introduced them to Volcano Island, which is essentially "explore explore explore," and they kept wanting to do other stuff.

Quote:

Moreover, each scenario generally has at least one crux if you hope to win...Castaways = shelter + roof, Cursed Island = place fog on unexplored tiles, etc. Though nothing will guarantee victory in any scenario. Still, if your group hasn't caught on to some of these things...you're gonna have a bad time.


Yeah, I think they probably gave up before they really figured out what they were supposed to do in each scenario.
 
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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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Dumon wrote:
Hmm.
I almost always play with four characters, when I am playing solo.


I never thought of trying to play them with four characters myself - maybe I'll have to try it.

I just seem lots of suggestions on how to make the scenarios HARDER and it just boggles my mind how some could either continue to win SO MUCH that they thought the game was EASY, or managed to figure out a "system" that made it easier for themselves.

I know focusing on raising morale sometimes really gives you a boost with those determination tokens, but other than that...

I'll have to give four players solo a shot, just to see what it does.
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Victor Lesperance
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We always played with 4. Castaways and Cursed seemed extremely easy. After my one solo crash and burn (teaching myself how to play with rulebook in hand) we only ever lost those scenarios one time ever.

We played cannibals one time and were butchered and eaten alive. That one "felt impossible," but after only one play through I'll assume "user error" for now.

That was with a borrowed copy. Waiting til September to continue the voyage.

There was a thread a month back with many suggestions for making the game easier. I say go for it. You payed your sheckels. Adjust as needed so everyone has fun.
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Joffrey N.
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Lhowser wrote:
Kubigaruma wrote:

I know you've read the FAQ, but make sure you are putting fog on empty island spaces and not just discovered tiles. You usually have a lot of time before fog is an issue.


Perhaps maybe this was one of the problems. I'm also assuming the volcanic ash in the Volcano Island scenario is treated the same way?

Yes, put white markers on any tiles/spaces except Volcano itself

Lhowser wrote:
I never thought of trying to play them with four characters myself - maybe I'll have to try it.

I just seem lots of suggestions on how to make the scenarios HARDER and it just boggles my mind how some could either continue to win SO MUCH that they thought the game was EASY, or managed to figure out a "system" that made it easier for themselves.

I know focusing on raising morale sometimes really gives you a boost with those determination tokens, but other than that...

I'll have to give four players solo a shot, just to see what it does.

I cannot give you better advices than previous answers, essentially keep focused on scenario objectives and try to avoid spreading everywhere for stuffs that doesnt look crucial.
Also, using character abilities helps a lot, they should not be forgotten !! For example, using a lot of Soldier's abilities (Defensive plan and Frenzy) in Cannibals, and you will find it not so hard after all (should you not draw 3 books in a row laugh).
Ive only played 1 game with 4 players (Castaways with 2 newbies) and we won, but only because we were lucky on card draws, not bad on dice rolls, and especially because they wanted me to remind them of every consequences we should care about by not doing this or that (essentially weather, missing food, etc...). But curiously, I didn't find it as hard as solo, because we got a few more pawns to address crucial things, and get safe for food by building the needed inventions. Maybe just the shelter and roof need more time to be built, but then I found that everything went well

On my side, I DO NOT find the game easy at all (I do not understand how people would want to make scenarios harder, except maybe scenario 2), but I would say it is rather balanced when you figure out each scenario strategy (even Cannibals based on my experience, but then 90% of all my games were solo). Again strategy is not exactly identical wether playing with 1/2/3/4 players...And depends also upon the good combination of players facing a specific scenario.
That's what imo makes this game so great and repeatable !!

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James Burns
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First goal out of the gate for Castaways is build a shelter then roof! You won't survive without one when the rain starts.

It can't be that hard for we lost plenty of times at Mepacon. Did you want me to bring it again this fall just so we can win?
 
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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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Thanks, James, but I can win it enough by myself!

I just needed to vent my frustrations. (It's tough having a game that you can actually play with a group, and everyone hates it.)
 
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Dumon wrote:
Hmm.
I almost always play with four characters, when I am playing solo. And I played each and every scenario as long as it took, until I beat them. Except for Jenny. Beat it once, because I misread a rule (that was long before I did the translation), and never beat it again, afterwards. I think the game carries a grudge.

From experience, I can say that all scenarios have differing difficulty. Also, one scenario can have differing difficulty with different player counts - or so I have come to realize.

However, all of them are doable with 4. Some of them easily, once you know on what to concentrate. Others are highly unlikely.

See, the thing is, you got to find out what is really essential, and then ignore the rest as long as possible, only putting out fires you cannot ignore any longer...
...okay, that is not new information, I guess. But once you have that figured out, the rest simply comes down to what the game has in store for you, regarding card texts. If you know how to beat it, the only thing that can keep you from winning is bad luck (die rolls or card draws, or even both).

The biggest problem is that the game provides a smorgasbord of possibilities. And you want to use them, preferrably all of them. But that is not how the game works. It presents you with 24 options, and lets you figure out that only 4 of those are not only necessary this time, they are the ONLY things you should concentrate on, as long as possible...


Oh, and Cursed Island is WAY easier than Castaways - especially with 4. Once you grok how to play it, the game will have a hard time keeping you from winning that one.

This sounds like good advice, but the bolded worries me as someone looking forward to Robinson Crusoe.

Is it really a situation where out of 24 possible actions, each scenario involves spamming 4 actions repeatedly? That sounds almost as though if you "spoil" a scenario for yourself by finding out the proper 4 actions, the scenario is kind of ruined and doesn't have replay value.

Hopefully I'm oversimplifying?
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Aleksander Idziak
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GAFBlizzard wrote:


Is it really a situation where out of 24 possible actions, each scenario involves spamming 4 actions repeatedly? That sounds almost as though if you "spoil" a scenario for yourself by finding out the proper 4 actions, the scenario is kind of ruined and doesn't have replay value.

Hopefully I'm oversimplifying?

Yes. You're oversimplifying
It's not like you're going to do same 4 actions repeatedly killing this way replayability. In different scenarios you need to focus on different strategy in order to win. Game gives you a lot of good things to do, but, depending on scenario, some are more important than others. If you stretch too much, doing good, but not neccesary things, you may run out of time, wounds, etc.
Replayability in each scenario is high mainly due to random events that are going to happen in each game and that will present different tactical choices.
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Darin Bolyard
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Dumon wrote:
See, the thing is, you got to find out what is really essential, and then ignore the rest as long as possible, only putting out fires you cannot ignore any longer...

Obviously, Dumon can speak and clarify for himself, but I think this↑ is more or less the same as this↓.

Dumon wrote:
The biggest problem is that the game provides a smorgasbord of possibilities. And you want to use them, preferably all of them. But that is not how the game works. It presents you with 24 options, and lets you figure out that only 4 of those are not only necessary this time, they are the ONLY things you should concentrate on, as long as possible...

So, your concern:
GAFFBlizzard wrote:
Is it really a situation where out of 24 possible actions, each scenario involves spamming 4 actions repeatedly? That sounds almost as though if you "spoil" a scenario for yourself by finding out the proper 4 actions, the scenario is kind of ruined and doesn't have replay value.


Hopefully I'm oversimplifying?


There's no "spamming" in this game. The game constantly throws challenges and obstacles at you which, thanks to an abundance of event cards and adventure cards, will be different each time you play, even if you're playing the same scenario over and over. There are adverse effects that you can plan for from one scenario to the next, just as there are specific objectives in each scenario. But how you arrive at our objective will be a different tale each time you play.
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James Burns
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Lhowser wrote:
Thanks, James, but I can win it enough by myself!

I just needed to vent my frustrations. (It's tough having a game that you can actually play with a group, and everyone hates it.)


There are more fish in the sea to play with. Time to kick in that Acquisition Disorder and buy all the games coming out of GENCON.
 
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Joffrey N.
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Lhowser, in addition I just discovered that a crewman deck has been created by Portal (last year) to ease the game.
It could also improve replayability
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La_Gofr wrote:
Lhowser, in addition I just discovered that a crewman deck has been created by Portal (last year) to ease the game.
It could also improve replayability

It would be neat if the new version includes that deck, or if U.S. stores get the deck. :o
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Kristopher
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I jotted it down in my Risk campaign book. I always used to do that so I could replay my moments of glory over a glass of brandy in the sleeping quarters.
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La_Gofr wrote:
Lhowser, in addition I just discovered that a crewman deck has been created by Portal (last year) to ease the game.
It could also improve replayability


Wouldn't the crewman deck just simply ADD a level of complexity to the game, versus make the base game easier? (Does that make sense?)

I read the rules with adding less Book Icon'd Event cards to the deck or using Friday AND the Dog. Doesn't simply adding another crewman either make the game a bit more complex (might as well just play TWO Fridays) or take away from the overall theme of the game? (Might as well have a whole shipfull of people.)
 
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Byron S
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The crewmen deck is characters with special powers which help you out, and don't necessarily all give you pawns for actions. Most, like Friday, don't require feeding or shelter, but some do. Their powers generally fit with the type of character they are, so it doesn't really break theme. It's just one (or two or three, I suppose) more person(s) that ended up in the same situation you are that are helping to rescue you from whatever it is that you encounter.
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