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Crisis» Forums » Strategy

Subject: How powerful are banks? rss

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Peter Hazlewood
United Kingdom
Bromsgrove
Worcestershire
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Hi folks. Last night I had my third play of this fantastic game. I introduced it to 2 new members of my gaming group and we had a brilliant 4p game on medium difficulty, managing to save the Axia economy. We have one possible concern regarding the power of banks in the game.

First game we played (4p easy), my friend Jon built a bank early on and never looked back. He put together a score of 144, heavily based around money generation, while we scored in the 80s and 90s.

Second game it was a 2p game, medium difficulty in which the economy crashed end of round 5 and we both lost. No banks involved that I can remember.

Third game last night was a 4p game, medium difficulty. I built and managed to run a bank from the first round and this, coupled with a food industry and farm combo, gave me massive spending power the entire game. At one point I was investing in companies I didn't need/want just for the points on my way to a dominant victory, this time 124 points vs scores again in the 80s and 90s.

All my friends enjoyed it, as did I, but we're just a little concerned that the bank could be a dominant strategy. Did this bear out in playtesting? What is the feeling about the power of banks, particularly in the early game? Did I just get lucky with the engine I was able to build?
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Alvin Chen
United States
Bellevue
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Banks can certainly be part of a winning strategy, but they certainly aren't required. I've heard different opinions about the best companies, depending on the play group (e.g., resorts, chemical farm).

One of the designers described the service industry companies as part of a more modest but predictable strategy, while the resource companies might have greater variance and interaction (due to competition and timing in the export market) but with high potential payouts. Players may mix and match among both types of companies and even shift strategies during the game.

I think a lot of newer players worry about buying new companies as often as possible, sometimes without synergies, and the banks certainly help with that. It's often better to optimize the companies you already have. People also fear taking loans, though they're quite benign in Crisis.

I will say that an early bank has the often-overlooked benefit of having two manager symbols, bringing you two-thirds of the way to your fifth manager.
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Peter Hazlewood
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Bromsgrove
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Kyellan wrote:
I will say that an early bank has the often-overlooked benefit of having two manager symbols, bringing you two-thirds of the way to your fifth manager.


Yes, and that may have been part of the reason why I won this game so convincingly. The first couple of rounds there were not many with manager symbols on them. I got my manager on the second round whilst the other players didn't get them for another couple of turns. Maybe that was really the clincher...

Thanks for the other advice. I'll reassure my fellow gamers
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Pantelis Bouboulis
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Hi guys,

Some insights for the Bank Cards (from my perspective):
The Banks on their own are very weak companies. They do not give any VPs, for example. Their importance is the two manager icons on them. This can give you an important lead (as you observed in the game you mentioned). If you grab one in the first rounds and manage to acquire another building to give you some extra VPs, then you have a good winning strategy for sure. The Bank on its own cannot give you victory. You actually use it to get that extra manager earlier.
Instead of banks, you can also invest in powerplants, mines or industries to get the manager earlier. The latter (although they generally have 1 manager icon on them) have the advantage that they are more usefull throught the game.
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Peter Hazlewood
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Bromsgrove
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Thanks Pantelis. Bring on more games...!
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Pantelis Bouboulis
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Thanks for your kind words Peter.
We are happy that you enjoy the game!
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