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Subject: SUPERSIZE TO AN EPIC MAORI? rss

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Gordon Stewart
United States
Bowie
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This is the germ of an idea that maybe you can resolve.
With many good games expanded or doubled in size
(Memoire Overlord, Epic Ancients, Epic Battlelore, etc.)
maybe Maori (a favorite of mine) could be doubled.
Below is our first experimental game with commentary IMHO
on the plusses and minuses. Can you build on this?

1. DOUBLED THE BOARD SIZE + Since the original game is
mostly horizontal, we thought the double board should be also
of horizontal proportions. For variety, we used one regular side
and one atoll side. Maybe having both be regular would be simpler.

These boards were turned 90 degrees.
2. UNLIMITED CANOES – Our game started well,
but once we got past six canoes each, almost every new tile in the selection
matrix was too easy to obtain. We decided against an artificial limit.
Untried ideas include canoe-wrecking storms, gaining a space for every PAIR of
canoes, only getting extra canoes for those on the board your explorer ship
is on, skipping a turn to sink an opponent’s canoe, etc.

3. ENLARGING THE SELECTION MATRIX FROM 4X4 TO 5X5 + This seemed to
work, with middle tiles still being bought occasionally for one or two shells.

4. STARTING W/2 CANOES, 5 SHELLS LIKE NORMAL + We tried to keep as
much of the original rules as possible. We were surprised that the shells seemed
to work well without changing the rules.

5. REQUIRED THAT EACH PLAYER’S “SEARCH SHIP” ONLY MOVE “ON” TILES –
Moving your ship only on tiles AND being allowed to place chosen tiles only on
the eight surrounding squares was fine until midgame. But later, it proved
too restrictive to fill the last remaining sea squares. Maybe after a point,
(like filling one card) you are allowed to have a second.

CONLUSIONS: Our game over-stayed its welcome, taking too long to completely
fill both boards. Ideas that worked included double boards, 5 x 5 matrix, and
standard rules for most facets. Needing work is number of canoes and individual
ship use. I know “there’s a game in there somewhere”. Our game was by necessity
for two people; maybe for 4 a more interactive layout could be like this:

Sharing this in hopes that it stimulates ideas.
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Tom P
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I like that 4-board layout, should try that sometime! I gues you would need to have a scoring track and perhaps, the person who completes an island gets the points (so you could be completing an island someone else started, which someone else started..)

For two, you could play the basic rules but with two boards, a race to finish them both. Alternatively why not turn the basic side in your picture around so you get a really long strip of water down the left for super-sized islands?
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Gordon Stewart
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Like the idea of playing on others boards
in 4 player w/ a scoring track.
Super long island is a real possibility,
may be easier with two "explorer" ships each.
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Bill Morgal
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capt yid wrote:
2. UNLIMITED CANOES – Our game started well,
but once we got past six canoes each, almost every new tile in the selection matrix was too easy to obtain. We decided against an artificial limit. Untried ideas include canoe-wrecking storms, gaining a space for every PAIR of canoes, only getting extra canoes for those on the board your explorer ship is on, skipping a turn to sink an opponent’s canoe, etc.

3. ENLARGING THE SELECTION MATRIX FROM 4X4 TO 5X5 + This seemed to
work, with middle tiles still being bought occasionally for one or two shells.

I don't remember talking about the untried ideas you mentioned regarding storms and sinking other player canoes. How would storms work? I really don't like the idea about skipping a turn to sink another canoe.It doesn't feel right in this kind of game to be able to futz with the other player's stuff.I thought our enlarging the matrix to 5x5 solved a lot of the problems you mentioned.



capt yid wrote:
5. REQUIRED THAT EACH PLAYER’S “SEARCH SHIP” ONLY MOVE “ON” TILES –
Moving your ship only on tiles AND being allowed to place chosen tiles only on the eight surrounding squares was fine until midgame. But later, it proved too restrictive to fill the last remaining sea squares. Maybe after a point, (like filling one card) you are allowed to have a second.

I did not think it too restrictive. I think it makes the game harder which is not necessarily a bad thing. It just requires more planning and more thinking ahead. You did not do as good a job as perhaps you could have managing your tile selection and placement. Just don't go moviing your canoe to one end of the board while you still have available squares needing tiles on the other end of the board. That's what made it restrictive for you.



capt yid wrote:
CONLUSIONS: Our game over-stayed its welcome, taking too long to completely fill both boards.

It did get tiresome towards the end.



capt yid wrote:
Ideas that worked included double boards, 5 x 5 matrix, and
standard rules for most facets.

I agree.



capt yid wrote:
Needing work is number of canoes and individual
ship use.

I agree the number of canoes need tweeking. I very much like your idea of only being able to move the canoe on the tile matrix based on the number of canoes you have on the mapboard where your board canoe is. I think that's a great idea we should try!



If you want to add some randomness to board canoe movement that will also slightly aleviate your problem of restrictiveness of movement, how about this:

PREVAILING WINDS
Whenever a matrix canoe passes the upper left corner matrix tile, a d10-4 die roll is made.

d10-1 Wind blows towards the NE (movement up or right is 1 - 3 squares)
d10-2 Wind blows towards the NW (movement up or left is 1 - 3 squares)
d10-3 Wind blows towards the SE (movement down or right is 1 - 3 squares)
d10-4 Wind blows towards the SW (movement down or left is 1 - 3 squares)

Mapboard movement remains 1 square up/down/left/right unless you move the canoe in one of the two prevailing wind directions



If you want more options, how about this:

FOUR TILE HOLDING SPOTS
Two holding spots for one board and two holding spots for the other board.

What think you?
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Gordon Stewart
United States
Bowie
20715
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The prevailing winds option would really help
with the lack of movement, in late game.

"Untried ideas" were also unspoken. Having the
number of canoes based on the board you're on
makes for interesting decisions: when to cross
over the "equator".

Two holding areas (per board) really alleviates
many problems with our test game.

For four player, a "catch the leader" mechanism
might involve sinking an opponent's canoe, causing
a volcano, or stealing shells; just ideas.

Good comments!
 
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