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Historia» Forums » Rules

Subject: Did I do this right? rss

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Andy Kent
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Hi

I just wanted to check that my first turn was all legal. I am playing solo with 3 civbots (blue, green, yellow) all of them chieftains.

I placed first, taking India, which was value 16. Blue took area 15 (Southern South America), Yellow took area 14 (Europe), and Green took area 13 (Middle East), next to me.

My first go was:

Art - take the Persepolis wonder (get a cube back when playing Military) - use 1 cube, down to 1
Military + turn Persepolis - use and get back 1 cube, still at 1
Technology - use 1 cube, down to 0
Exploit - get 2 cubes back
Raid Green civbot, my neighbour - gain 3rd cube back plus a VP
Expansion - into the Middle East with Green civbot - down to 2 cubes
War - declare war on Green civbot, destroy his only cube and gain 2 VP
Revolution

This used all of my cards except my advisor and trade. Was it all legal?

Obviously getting Persepolis was a bonus but is it a common tactic to put yourself next to a civbot at the start (you know where they will be) and then play raid, military, technology, exploit, expansion, war and wipe them out in the first turn, before they get a chance to act?

TDM
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Mark Buetow
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That all sounds correct. Getting set to pounce on a CivBot is a good strategy. It does get tough when one of the CivBots works on its own, away from everyone, and gets strong without you being able to do much.
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M.C.Crispy
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You "wiped them out" how?
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Joe Pilkus
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Andy,

Greetings! Overall, it sounds good, though there are a few minor points I'll mention...

1.) You place last...the CivBots actually place first (see pg 11, left side column)
2.) Your use of the cards reads fine, but remember that you're only going to return to your hand the oldest two cards (Art and Military), along with Revolution and one card of your choice among the remaining ones (Technology, Exploit, Raid, Expansion, or War)

From a scoring perspective, it pays to play Expansion and War on even numbered turns, as odd numbered turns don't garner you VPs.
Otherwise, that's it...good luck!

Cheers,
Joe
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Andy Kent
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mccrispy wrote:
You "wiped them out" how?

Hi

When I win the war against the Green civbot, I gain 2 VP and its cube is removed. As it is its last (only) cube, the Green civbot civilisation is eliminated.

It's the same for a human player in solo - if I lose my last cube to a civbot war, I am eliminated and lose the game.

TDM
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M.C.Crispy
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Ah, so solo removes the restriction against removing a player's last cube? Hadn't spotted that.
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Andy Kent
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The Professor wrote:
Andy,

Greetings! Overall, it sounds good, though there are a few minor points I'll mention...

1.) You place last...the CivBots actually place first (see pg 11, left side column)
2.) Your use of the cards reads fine, but remember that you're only going to return to your hand the oldest two cards (Art and Military), along with Revolution and one card of your choice among the remaining ones (Technology, Exploit, Raid, Expansion, or War)

From a scoring perspective, it pays to play Expansion and War on even numbered turns, as odd numbered turns don't garner you VPs.
Otherwise, that's it...good luck!

Cheers,
Joe

Hi Joe

Thanks for the confirmation! I'm not saying it was a sound military strategy - no doubt I'll pay for it next turn! I only wanted to check if it was legal. Also, it may be the only chance I get to destroy the Green civbot, as it will probably soon start to outstrip me in Military...

As for the set up order, I can't see anything about it anywhere except the example on page 10 (right hand side):

"Let assume that the highest territory tokens are 16, 14 and 13. In a 4 player game , the 2 civbots will start in territories 16 and 14. If territory 14 is occupied, the civbots will start in territories 16 and 13."

How can territory 14 be occupied unless a player has occupied it before the civbots set up? It implies the players must set up first.

TDM
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Andy Kent
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mccrispy wrote:
Ah, so solo removes the restriction against removing a player's last cube? Hadn't spotted that.

Hi

Yes - the solo rules state "You can lose your last cube on the map as the result of a war with a Civbot. If this happens, you are eliminated and lose the game."

The Civbot rules also mention "The last territory of a Civbot can be attacked and destroyed."

Solo wars are to the death!

TDM

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Simon Maynard
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the_demolished_man wrote:
As for the set up order, I can't see anything about it anywhere except the example on page 10 (right hand side):

"Let assume that the highest territory tokens are 16, 14 and 13. In a 4 player game , the 2 civbots will start in territories 16 and 14. If territory 14 is occupied, the civbots will start in territories 16 and 13."

How can territory 14 be occupied unless a player has occupied it before the civbots set up? It implies the players must set up first.

I've always interpreted the rules so that the civbot territory cubes should be placed first (before any human players) but I have to admit that reading back through the rules I can't find anything that states that explicitly.

Strategically at least it's worth avoiding the high value territories in the beginning of the game because they (the civbots) always expand to the highest value territory available (or the highest value unavailable if none available). You've got more chance of being left alone if you are occupying low value territories.

Which, incidentally, is why I shy away from early moves to wipe out civbots; you end up occupying a high value territory early.
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Andy Kent
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Hi Simon

I must admit that I am still finding my feet about the right strategy and tactics for playing the game, and I'm still trying to get the rules down. There are many times when the rulebook has gaps or omissions, or just isn't clear, so it's not plain sailing, especially for solo players. Thank heavens for BGG!

I'm learning that wiping out civbots early, taking high value areas, using all my cards in the first turn and so on seem like good ideas but are actually detrimental in the long run.

Once I've got a few more game under my belt where I get massacred mid game, or watch a civbot's VP score fly away I'll learn from my mistakes and start to learn some early tactics I'm sure.

I wish there was a larger community playing Historia - it seems that most civ game players prefer super detailed systems that last 8 hours! Personally it's exactly what I want!

TDM
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Simon Maynard
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I've not had the game long myself but have had quite a few games in, mostly solo, but a few multi player as well. I have found that the strategies one can employ successfully in the multiplayer game and the solo game quite different.

In the solo game, things are a lot more predictable (although not entirely so) and it almost becomes more of an action/movement programming game. You can sometimes plan and pull off some amazing combos in a round of the solo game that you would never rely on being able to pull off in the multiplayer game since you never know when the round will end (not to mention that human players are less predictable than the civbots). Also the comparative value between military and scientific advancements shifts considerably (in the military favour) for solo games I have found. I'm experimenting now with ways in which the solo game can be modified so that this balance can be redressed somewhat.
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Joe Pilkus
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Andy,

It's interesting that you and other had mentioned the longer, slog of a game. I tried Through the the Ages and it's painful.. THe rules are poor and the gameplay is punishing if you don't pursue Military. From what I understand, the designer did nab a great editor and they fixed the very gamey Military rules. For my taste, I prefer Historia (and it's one I can get to the table with my non-gamer girlfriend) and Nations. It does was TtA does in about 1/3 of the time.

Also, I do owe you an answer on the player sets up last bit...I know that what I've told you is correct, but until I find you a source, I'll feel undone.

Cheers,
Joe
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Andy Kent
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Hi Simon

It's true that the solo game has a different philosophy. One main difference I find is that it is very possible and tempting to play most of your cards in a turn, especially early on which means of course that you have very limited choices next turn. I am often faced with having plenty of cubes but no cards to play. Whereas with other human players someone will play Revolution before you want to, shortening the current turn but giving you more cards/options for the next.

I'm not sure the game needs modifying regarding the value of military strength. Very few civilisations in history have become powerful without being strong, except those with no competitors. There are plenty of strategies I'd like to try out first.

But it's a learning curve and I'm at the bottom of the slope!

TDM

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Andy Kent
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The Professor wrote:
Also, I do owe you an answer on the player sets up last bit...I know that what I've told you is correct, but until I find you a source, I'll feel undone.

Cheers,
Joe

Hi Joe

It's discussed in this thread from 2014:

https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1274236/civbot-setup-order-...

Apparently although not stated in the rules, the FAQ says "Civbots are placed on the map following turn order", and as they come after the players in turn order, they must place after them. Also, apparently the German rules explicitly state that the civbots are placed after the players.

TDM
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Joe Pilkus
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Andy,

That's interesting. I will say, after 50+ games giving the Civbots a higher level on the map proved challenging, there won't be a game I don't win, if I get to claim the highest place AND go first. Hmmm, I'll keep looking, my friend.

Cheers,
Joe

Edit: I reached out to Marco...
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Simon Maynard
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the_demolished_man wrote:
I'm not sure the game needs modifying regarding the value of military strength. Very few civilisations in history have become powerful without being strong, except those with no competitors.

That may well be the case, but it is likewise true that in the multi-player game the advantages of a technological lead are more pronounced than they are in the solo game.

The main reason is because the advantage a player gets by achieving the ability to play two (and later three) actions at once is very significant in the multiplayer game but has no bearing on the solo game.

For the civbot there is very little to be gained by moving up in technology. There are only two levels that have any significance for the civbot at all (Navigation and Nuclear Energy). Whilst it is also true that the civbot does not get the benefit of the military level bonuses (recycled cubes/cards) the fact that being superior in military strength wins you wars is all important for the civbot. Conversely there is no advantage from simply being at a higher technological level than an opponent.
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Simon Maynard
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The Professor wrote:
I will say, after 50+ games giving the Civbots a higher level on the map proved challenging, there won't be a game I don't win, if I get to claim the highest place AND go first.

I know you've played this a lot more than me but is it really that much of an advantage to claim the highest value territory first? It seems so difficult to get any points from that territory in a solo game whenever I have occupied it. As soon as you get a civbot that has no available territories to expand to, that's the one the go for.
 
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Joe Pilkus
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Simon,

That's an interesting question. I know that having the lowest numbered tile territory forces me to fight for a higher level as well as eliminate the CivBots as quickly as possible. Territories only count for VPs on even numbered turns, so the earlier the better to garner those VPs.

Ususally, I trail by a small margin during ERA I, catch-up to the remaining 2-3 Civbots and often experience a slight lead during ERA II, but end most games with a 20+ lead. My prognosis would be that my lead in the end would be even greater with an initial, few extra VPs.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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Simon Maynard
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Joe, what level do you play at? I mean, what level do you set the civ-bots to?
 
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Joe Pilkus
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Simon,

Most of my games are set at 2 King and 3 Prince. When I first started, they were all set at Chieftain. I raised one every 3-5 games, eventually raising them all to Prince, and then slowly raised a few to King Level.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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Simon Maynard
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I've played a couple of solo games now where I've contemplated placing first but can't quite bring myself to do it. It seems like cheating even though I'm not really sure yet whether it would actually give me an advantage. It just feels more challenging having to try and find a good spot to start after all the civbots are placed.
 
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Joe Pilkus
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Simon,

I don't disagree...and again, that's my interpretation of the rules, coupled with earlier conversations with the designer. He's not been on BGG for awhile, so I may need to try elsewhere for a more definitive answer.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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Andy Kent
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Hi

I have played a couple more games - and I have to say that is does feel more "right" to place the civbots first, regardless of the rules. So I am happy to go along with that.

On another note, I have started to notice a pattern in the civbot play in my games, or at least in the results. I played today with 1 King, 1 Noble and 3 Chieftains, and the resulting scores were:

King: 146
Me: 139
Noble: 96
Chieftains: died on 66; died on 5; died on 2

Do you find this is a typical result? The King wins, the Noble trails by a fair margin but the Chieftans generally are eradicated or at least score very lowly.

Do you, after many games, ever play against Chieftains?

TDM
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Simon Maynard
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Andy,

I haven't played with Chieftains since my first couple of games. I tended to play all civs at the same level so usually all Nobel. Haven't tried starting a game with them all at King level.

If you are looking for a challenging way of playing this game that is more like the multi player game, have you tried my variant? In this the civbots all start at chieftain level and move up to Nobel and eventually Kings as they reach the tech levels that give the player more cards. I also added a random factor that can limit how many cards you can play each round because the civbots can trigger a revolution before you play it.
 
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