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Subject: Strategic Primer for the New Player rss

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g k
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When I started playing 7 wonders online, I went 0-12. After I read this thread:
http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/691370/some-complex-strategi...
I went 4-2. It's quite amazing.

All due respect to the OP, not everybody has an afternoon to read that dissertation, so I thought I'd try to write a concise primer here. Let me know if you feel I glossed over anything important, or where I could shorten the primer even further.


*Overview and numbers *
7 wonders is a drafting game. The best strategy is not necessarily the most powerful, but the one of least resistance. When you compete directly with another player, you may expend a lot of resources to accomplish nothing. The best way to win is to avoid conflict - opponents can still disrupt your strategy by discarding your cards for cash or slipping your cards under their wonder stages, but none of these will ever be as harmful as direct competition for the same pool of resources.

In the game you draft a total of 18 cards across 3 ages. Every pick is precious.
If you discard your pick for money every turn, you would end the game with 19 points (ignoring military). A typical game winner ends the game with 55-70 points.

You don't have to rush to build wonder stages; their virtue is that you can build them at any time. Wait until you get a "hand full of crap" or see a card that you want to make scarce (brown, grey, green, red, or purple - rarely yellow or blue) so you can still make full use of that turn.

You are generally weaker against the player who passes cards to you and stronger against the player who you pass cards to. Keep this in mind when picking fights.


*Brown / gray cards*
The resource cards are investments - they do not generate points on their own except through trade, and coinage is a mediocre way to score points. Still, nobody wins without at least one or two brown cards (generally 3).

Not all resources are equal. Wood and ore are necessary for a lot of different cards, but generally only one is needed. When stone is needed for a building, it's often needed in 2s and 3s.

Wood and ore are primarily military resources. The grey resources are primarily science. In 4-6 player games, the science gear is actually rarer than the others, so glass is more valuable.

Brown cards are plentiful in 4+ player, but rare and disrupt-able in 3 player. If you need a resource to build something in 3 player, you had better draft it immediately, or you're not building that thing.


*Yellow cards*
Yellow cards are deeper investments than brown cards. They generate gold for purchasing resources from your neighbors, but they're only worthwhile if your neighbor has brown/gray cards for the resources you need.
The Caravansery and the Forum are exceptions. They generate resources that can't be traded for, further weakening their yellow counterparts.

They are reactionary cards that allow you to parasite tempo off of your neighbors if they invest heavily in browns or greys, but when you take one, be sure it's actually saving you draft picks.


*Red cards*
No matter how many red cards you buy, you're competing with your neighbors for a total of 18-21 points (2x(1+3+5)vp, +3 defeat points for your neighbors). It can be easy to fall into a Pyrrhic victory, especially if someone across the table gets their 18 points with much less resistance.

There are generally enough military cards for each player to buy one per age. That's the baseline.

Red cards are 1 shield in age 1, 2 in age 2, and 3 in age 3, but early military investments tend to be more valuable than later ones. The military you buy in age 1 will contribute to three different fights. The military you buy in age 3 will only contribute to one of them.

Military strategy tends to be a little weaker in larger games, as a smaller percentage of your opponents will be getting defeat points (3p: 100%. 7p: 33%).

Only one military card requires a grey good - the arsenal requires a cloth. The strategists guild also requires cloth. Military tends to otherwise require only wood and ore.

Remember that colossus and mausoleum are both capable of getting shields on the last turn before a fight with their wonder abilities.


*Green cards*
It's better to assemble sets than to stack onto one science symbol. There are only 4 unique buildings of each symbol total for 16 points. You can try to get to 5 for 25 points with a scientist's guild, but you're then pinning your entire strategy on one card.
Distributing those 4 cards onto a set plus one will get you 13 points. Assembling a safe 2 sets (6 cards) will get you a respectable 26. Assembling a risky 3 sets (9 cards) will get you a game-winning 48, but is more easily disruptable.

Chains generally travel within a symbol - gears beget more gears and so on. The one exception is the school, which can chain into the other symbols in age 3, which makes it valuable.

Green tends to be the second best strategy. It's difficult to force green, and it's hard for more than 40% of the players in a given game to score good points with green. Still, watch for opportunities. There's always room for at least one green player.


*Blue cards*
Blue cards are straightforward. 2 points is generally too low, but 5-6 points per card is very respectable. Be sure to do your calculations - it's rare for a tricky red, yellow, or purple card to be worth more than 6 points in age 3. The blue is often the correct pick.

Where reds are better with more reds and greens are better with more greens, blues are flexible and anyone can pick them at any time, regardless of their strategy. Pick them up if they're good for you immediately, but go ahead and leave them if you can do something better. Don't bank on seeing that card again (unless you calculate out that nobody else can buy it).


*Purple cards*
The scientist's guild, the strategists guild, and the shipbuilder's guild are good for their particular strategies (green, red, brown/blue). Buy them if you're going that route. The value of the OTHER guilds depends entirely on what your opponents are doing. If they signal in age 1 that they'll be going a particular route, do some calculation to see if you should plan to get a guild.

They get scarcer with more players, and it's less likely that both of your neighbors will be taking the same strategy in larger games.


*Summary*
You'll have more fun if you understand why you won one game and why you lost another. Understanding the viability and interplay of stable strategies (early red, green sets, resource cost trends) is key to this.

Try to have fun. =)

GenericKen
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Ryan Thompson
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Thanks for this primer. I agree with your last statement completely. As I play more and more games, I am realizing that the fun is not winning (which is nice) but in seeing why my strategies fail or succeed.

Ryan
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Daniel Halasz
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Thx for the article. After a few games, I don't know why I win or loose. Moreover after the last turn I don't know who won.
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John Jersey
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Excellent article. Thanks for the insight. I'm about to sit down with a table of folks that have never played (me included)!
 
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Blake Rule
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GenericKen wrote:
Green tends to be the second best strategy.


I'm new to the game, and just bought it. If green is the second best strategy, what is the best strategy?
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Alessandro Malvasi
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"Still, nobody wins without at least one or two brown cards (generally 3)."

Sorry but i laughed and stopped reading right there. That's because in my group there's ALWAYS at least one player that play what we call the "green strategy cards" : ZERO brown/grey cards, only green cards (if you can take the green cards of the first deck by buying resources from other/having the right leader (archimedeus or bilkis) then the others are all free) and some blue cards (a lot of them are free too if you get them most of them)...and some yellow cards to help you in trades and making money.

And yes, this strategy is a real deal. If green cards aren't overdrafted/cutted, the player with that strategy win like every game or so.
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Digren K
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aleopeth7 wrote:
"Still, nobody wins without at least one or two brown cards (generally 3)."

Sorry but i laughed and stopped reading right there. That's because in my group there's ALWAYS at least one player that play what we call the "green strategy cards" : ZERO brown/grey cards, only green cards (if you can take the green cards of the first deck by buying resources from other/having the right leader (archimedeus or bilkis) then the others are all free) and some blue cards (a lot of them are free too if you get them most of them)...and some yellow cards to help you in trades and making money.

And yes, this strategy is a real deal. If green cards aren't overdrafted/cutted, the player with that strategy win like every game or so.

This strategy is relatively simple to defeat, at least in games with 4+ or 5+ players. At the end of the first age, make a note of the player who got no brown resources but has all three Age I scientific cards. Make it a point to not pass them any Age II scientific cards, either by playing them or burying them. Voila, the "green strategy cards" guy cannot chain anything into anything in Age III and has no resources to buy things. I know this is basically what you mean by "overdrafted/cutted", but this isn't a passive event over which you have no control. It's something you and your fellow non-green strat players must do to play the game (well).

I very rarely see a heavy-scientific strategy win, because of the ease of breaking the chains. Honestly, I very rarely see any chaining strategy win for that reason. Low-resource winning strategies instead usually rely on cash income and buying resources off neighbors and "play for free" leaders and wonder stages, not chaining.
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Alessandro Malvasi
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First, i didn't said how we're playing/played:

- we've played for like two months without any expansions, then for another two months or so with leaders and only a couple of weeks ago we've get cities.
- we are never 7 players or less than 4, we're often 4-5 and rarely 6 players.
- we are giving the wonders of course at random, but we let decide to each player which side of the his wonder wants to play (also: we didn't have catan and manneking pis)
- everyone is at least a decent players, we are a group of seven and i'd say that six of us are without doubt good players, with only another one guy (he didn't play much 7 wonders or board games in general) and a girl that sometimes join us being not so good.

With that in mind, i understand your point in cutting cards, but from what i saw there are tons of reasons that's stop you from cutting a lot/all the green cards:

- let's say there's one green cards in each hand, you're gonna waste three/four turns in cutting green cards? while build up the wonder is of course good/useful, we cannot say the same for discarding and get three money. It's basically a turn wasted for you, and i often get the feeling that by playing that way the only thing you can accomplish is to lose and draggin' the green cards guy with you...of course if the other option is to surely lose to the green cards guy you're gonna do it anyway and hoping you will not lose too much time against other players, but still i'm never happy to waste turns like this

- let's say there's two cards with two green cards each. If you're not getting helped by other players in cutting them, of course you can't cut both the green cards from the hand, so the green-guy is getting some green cards anyway

- what if the green-guy's wonder is halikarnassus? you're cutting-chance are now just 2-3-4 (your number of wonder-phases) in the whole game, because the cards you're discarding will be "rianimated" by the halikarnassus ability. One time if he's playing halikarnassus-A it's not a tragedy, but getting two-three cards with the side B is gonna wreck all your "cutting everything" strategy. Also, it can happen that in the specific turn that you want to bury the green card under your wonder you can't (you miss some resource), or it can happen that you've already build all your wonder (rhodes B with only two phases is quite fast to complete) or that it just suck to do that (maybe you're playing babylon and you're not in green cards, maybe you have olympia and you don't know yet if someone next to you will have a decent guild to copy, etc etc)

- what if the school is in the starting hand of the green-guy? Let's say that he get two or even all of the three green cards of the first age (not so difficult,i think) and in his second age-starting hand there's the school, and of course he can play it for free. Even if you're gonna cut all the green cards of the second age, he's gonna at least close the second sets in the third age quite easily due to the school's coupon that let's him play for free a tablet and a compass from the third era. What will you do then? cutting all the green cards even from the third era, spending like 5-6-7 turns of your whole game in cutting things?

- what if with the green card you would like to cut there's a really important card for you? like a glassworks you know you'll never see again while no one close to you has it, or something like that? you're really going to play half/most of the second age and all the third age without glassworks only to cut a green card to the green-guy

- what if you're not close to the green-guy? with 4 players if you're sit like "guy A-green guy-guy B-you", he can play easily one or two green cards (his starting hand and the hand of the guy sitting on his left) with you not be able to do anything about it. Even worse in 5 players if you're sit like "guy A-guy B-green guy-guy C-you" the green guy will see three "clean" hands if no one else is bothering him for whatever reason and you're the only one thinking "damn, i have to do something about that player or he's gonna easily win with a lot of green cards!". Like i said before we are almost everyone good players, but for whatever reason (pick one up there at random) the others are still passing green cards to him? What if next to the green cards-guy there one of the "bad" player, and he/she can't recognize the green-cards-guy is going to easily win if he/she don't do anything about it?

Also, with leaders the green strategy is even more stronger: with bilkis or achimedeus playing the "green cards strategy" it's even more easy because not only you have all the second/third green cards free, as always, but even the green cards of the first era are free! (literally free with archimedeus...1 gold each with bilkis) and there's some extra symbols out there so close three set (48 points only from green cards are quite a lot) isn't everything but impossible.

In the end, i've also have to say that i saw a couple of games where two (of four or five players) were fighting for green cards and still one of them has completed three sets and won the game (of course with some help, but most of the merit was going to the green cards), in 5 players the green cards are enough to be played with profit by two different players...

Also, for the record: i'm not saying and defending this strategy because i win a lot with it. In my group i've have to say i win quite a lot (often i win two out of three games and almost every time i win at least one game out of three/four games...it happened of course that i didn't win anything in the entire night, but i'd say it happened one or two times at max): i think i'm a quite versatile player and probably my preferite strategy is drafting "good stuff" (taking the resources to build everything without spend any money or very few, then just get everytime the cards that makes me more points, without basically any strategy). Even if i'm still standing the point that green cards are quite broken, i don't of course think that are the right strategy EVERY time. But for a lot of reasons, in our group the winning player is going to be the green guy like the 75/80% of the times.

Thanks for the resp anyway. I've never played 7wonders with/against someone aren't one of my close friends and i'm curious to know what the rest of the world thinks!
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M. B. Downey
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aleopeth7 wrote:
And yes, this strategy is a real deal. If green cards aren't overdrafted/cutted, the player with that strategy win like every game or so.


Interesting.

I'd love to play with you with a number of different groups and have you try that strategy every time and see how often you win.
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Digren K
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It's very interesting to hear strategies from others who have played the game! Also I haven't had a game night in two weeks due to the holidays and am itching to talk about or play something.

aleopeth7 wrote:
With that in mind, i understand your point in cutting cards, but from what i saw there are tons of reasons that's stop you from cutting a lot/all the green cards:

- let's say there's one green cards in each hand, you're gonna waste three/four turns in cutting green cards? while build up the wonder is of course good/useful, we cannot say the same for discarding and get three money. It's basically a turn wasted for you, and i often get the feeling that by playing that way the only thing you can accomplish is to lose and draggin' the green cards guy with you...of course if the other option is to surely lose to the green cards guy you're gonna do it anyway and hoping you will not lose too much time against other players, but still i'm never happy to waste turns like this


The other option is to play the green cards yourself. Four played green cards in Age II gives you 13 points leading into Age III, and you'll be able to chain all of the Age III green (and a few other cards as well) for free. If another player takes all three greens in Age I, you may be forced to switch strategies yourself to both counter them and give yourself a good chance to win.

At minimum two green cards in Ages I and II are in all of my strategies. They are two easy plays that yield 1 VP each when there's nothing better in the hand, and they make the correct green card chosen in Age III worth 8 points which is a high-value Age III play. Of course if I can pick up that third green in Age II I will.

Quote:
- let's say there's two cards with two green cards each. If you're not getting helped by other players in cutting them, of course you can't cut both the green cards from the hand, so the green-guy is getting some green cards anyway


Of course this happens. But the other players not helping you cull green cards happens most of the time when you are playing with newer players, not good players. Good players who lose regularly to someone playing an all-green chaining strategy will adapt to beat that strategy.

Quote:
- what if the green-guy's wonder is halikarnassus? you're cutting-chance are now just 2-3-4 (your number of wonder-phases) in the whole game, because the cards you're discarding will be "rianimated" by the halikarnassus ability. One time if he's playing halikarnassus-A it's not a tragedy, but getting two-three cards with the side B is gonna wreck all your "cutting everything" strategy. Also, it can happen that in the specific turn that you want to bury the green card under your wonder you can't (you miss some resource), or it can happen that you've already build all your wonder (rhodes B with only two phases is quite fast to complete) or that it just suck to do that (maybe you're playing babylon and you're not in green cards, maybe you have olympia and you don't know yet if someone next to you will have a decent guild to copy, etc etc)


Halikarnassus is very powerful with a high-green strategy. Recalling an Age I or II green is a good use of the dumpster-diving ability. In this case, greens that can be played by the green-chain player should only be used to complete wonder stages, or played face up into your own tableau. There is a level of randomness to the came for certain, but if the person who gets Halikarnassus always chooses side B and always wins on a green-chain strategy, then the game is either broken or the players need to find a method to defeat that strategy. In my experience, that strategy is regularly beaten by others burying or playing the Age II green cards.

Quote:
- what if the school is in the starting hand of the green-guy? Let's say that he get two or even all of the three green cards of the first age (not so difficult,i think) and in his second age-starting hand there's the school, and of course he can play it for free. Even if you're gonna cut all the green cards of the second age, he's gonna at least close the second sets in the third age quite easily due to the school's coupon that let's him play for free a tablet and a compass from the third era. What will you do then? cutting all the green cards even from the third era, spending like 5-6-7 turns of your whole game in cutting things?


If he has all of the Age I greens, plus a School and its two chains in Age III, then he has a total of 26 points from green cards - and probably little else. Maybe let's assume he has military victories from the red cards he could chain in Age II from his Age I greens, so now he has a total of 44 points? That's still a last-place score in our play. Basically, I'm not worried at all about someone playing a green strategy who only manages to acquire 26 points of green cards. As I mentioned above I personally have at least 10 points of green cards almost all the time, so the person who devoted his play to green-chains has only 16 more points from green - and I can make up 16 points in two (or, at most three) great plays in Age III, something that the resource-starved person might not be able to do.

Quote:
- what if with the green card you would like to cut there's a really important card for you? like a glassworks you know you'll never see again while no one close to you has it, or something like that? you're really going to play half/most of the second age and all the third age without glassworks only to cut a green card to the green-guy


When this happens I usually complain to the other players that it was their job to "stop stuff like this from happening" and pass on the green. As we've been discussing methods for the rest of the table to stop one person from investing too deeply in one strategy, some level of table talk is assumed. Now, if your group doesn't allow table talk, it can certainly be more difficult to stop the strategy. Now, it requires most of the players at the table to be sufficiently observant of the green-chain player's tableau to alter their own actions. Watching what is going on in other players' tableaus and adjusting for it is necessary in good play, certainly in the absence of any table talk pointing things out.

Quote:
- what if you're not close to the green-guy? with 4 players if you're sit like "guy A-green guy-guy B-you", he can play easily one or two green cards (his starting hand and the hand of the guy sitting on his left) with you not be able to do anything about it. Even worse in 5 players if you're sit like "guy A-guy B-green guy-guy C-you" the green guy will see three "clean" hands if no one else is bothering him for whatever reason and you're the only one thinking "damn, i have to do something about that player or he's gonna easily win with a lot of green cards!". Like i said before we are almost everyone good players, but for whatever reason (pick one up there at random) the others are still passing green cards to him? What if next to the green cards-guy there one of the "bad" player, and he/she can't recognize the green-cards-guy is going to easily win if he/she don't do anything about it?


One of my initial complaints about the game was that an experience player, sitting to the left of a new player, could almost always win by going for a resource-light strategy. The new player would always get a lot of resources and pass the experienced player good cards. However, as I've played more I've found this to occur less and less often. I think it's due to a few things - 1) I've taught the game to literally dozens of new players, and my explanation of how to play is better than it used to be so new players are able to play more advanced strategies and be more aware of what's going on around them, and 2) we usually let new players ask for help from the person who just passed them their hand.

I don't usually have this problem with experienced players, because experienced players know that they must help stop green chains - or if they don't (as in the glass example you used earlier) it's because they have their own better way to beat the green strategy.

Quote:
Also, with leaders the green strategy is even more stronger: with bilkis or achimedeus playing the "green cards strategy" it's even more easy because not only you have all the second/third green cards free, as always, but even the green cards of the first era are free! (literally free with archimedeus...1 gold each with bilkis) and there's some extra symbols out there so close three set (48 points only from green cards are quite a lot) isn't everything but impossible.


I haven't had a chance to play enough with Esteban, but other than him Bilkis is hands-down the best leader. In our play she is never passed; whoever gets her in an opening leader hand plays her. I'd guess she's worth 10 VP to any strategy. Archimedes is also very powerful for a green strategy, but his flaw is that the person playing him gives away the strategy at the very start of the first age. Now, it's easier to block even Age I greens from that person.

Quote:
In the end, i've also have to say that i saw a couple of games where two (of four or five players) were fighting for green cards and still one of them has completed three sets and won the game (of course with some help, but most of the merit was going to the green cards), in 5 players the green cards are enough to be played with profit by two different players...


I've seen someone get three complete sets of greens and lose. 48 points isn't enough when scores with both expansions are regularly in the 70s (with the winner sometimes touching the 80s). Of course I've also seen someone win a tough game with 55 points, where 48 came from green cards. In my experience, the former happens far more often that the latter does, though as we've discussed your experiences vary.

Quote:
Thanks for the resp anyway. I've never played 7wonders with/against someone aren't one of my close friends and i'm curious to know what the rest of the world thinks!


Thanks for discussing this! Too bad we can't play a few times and share tricks.
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Alessandro Malvasi
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downeymb wrote:
aleopeth7 wrote:
And yes, this strategy is a real deal. If green cards aren't overdrafted/cutted, the player with that strategy win like every game or so.


Interesting.

I'd love to play with you with a number of different groups and have you try that strategy every time and see how often you win.


Maybe i had explain myself wrong, sorry but english is not my native english: i didn't mean that i play that strategy everytime, in fact i think i'm the most reactive/versatile player (not necessarily the best anyway) of my group and i play everytime keeping in consideration my wonder, my leaders, the wonder/leaders of my neighbour and so on...I was just saying that most of the time (70/80%) the winner of the game is someone who got a lot (9+) green cards. And for what i've saw, ending with at least 9 green cards isn't that difficult. I'll try to explain me at best like this:

First game: player A wins with 10 green cards
Second game: player C wins with 11 green cards
Third game: player A wins with a "normal" strategy
Fourth game: player B wins with 9 green cards

That's the average results of our games.

Anyway if you just drop me in another players group (and i'd love to if i had the chance) you'll never going to see me drafting green cards like crazy everytime. Or maybe 'cause of the circumstances you'll see me drafting green cards like crazy everytime. Who knows? I can't tell fo sure, maybe as a general rule i suppose i can only say i would like to go for them "only" everytime i have bilkis or archimedeus as leaders, or everytime that me and one of my neighbour have two wonder between: halikarnassus, alexandria, ephesus...because in that way i can get one green cards for free (i already have one grey resource), another one by paying my neighbour with the other grey resource and just take the other grey cards if i have the chance to get it before i can see the related green card. Done that, every other green card are free for the rest of the game.

For example, even if i know from my experience that most of the time who heavily draft green cards are winning, i can't and i won't draft green cards if i have gizah/rhodos or if i have whatever wonder you want but i'm next to babylon.

To digren K: i will not respond to everything you said point by point because i think you've basically said only right things, but i don't think i'm wrong too. I mean, we can discuss about all the scenarios we want but we both know that each game of 7 wonders is different and even in games that can seem the same the smallet and ridiculous thing can change everything.

The only thing i have to say it's about "a guy with three sets isn't going to win anyway"...if he didn't take any brown/grey cards and he have 9 green cards, there are 9 other cards for him and for my experience an average board of a "no resources strategy player" would be something like:

9 green cards (48 points)
5-6 blue cards (2-3-7 that chains, 6points that chain with the library and maybe another couple of cheap blue cards from first/second age)
2-3 wonder completed (??? points)
0-1-2 yellow/black cards (??? points)
2-3 leader played (??? points)
-3 / -6 points, due to conflict (-3 because sometimes you're lucky and got next to another player who just ignore red cards, even that in our group happens a lot)
some coins (not a lot, i'd say 2-3 points at best)

With a board like that only from green+blue+conflict you get 48+20 (i've considered the two 2 points blue cards from the first age, the three point card that chains and the pantheon that's free due to the second age blue card and the other 6-points blue card that's free due to the library)-6, here we have 62 points + maybe a couple of yellow/black cards + wonders + leader + coins, not so bad i guess.

Anyway right tonight i'm going to play at least three games o 7 wonders with at least 5 players, maybe even six...to most of them i've already talked about this topic (http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/691370/some-complex-strategi...), because even there the author of the article is saying that more of two green sets is a difficult/risky thing to go for, and some of them was sceptical about everyone else in the world not considering broken the green cards like we're doing, but tonight we'll see if some of my advice will get followed and if so, we'll see if are effective or not. (like taking max two sets in a game, try to cut just one of three symbol because anyway with three of the same you're getting 9 points -instead of 10 by taking three symbol each of one is different- but in that way you're going to wreck the green strategy in a very better -not for the green-player - way).

I'll let you know how the games will go, i think i've a pretty good memory and i'm hoping to remember most of the things and write a proper "report" tonight.

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Digren K
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aleopeth7 wrote:
9 green cards (48 points)
5-6 blue cards (2-3-7 that chains, 6points that chain with the library and maybe another couple of cheap blue cards from first/second age)
2-3 wonder completed (??? points)
0-1-2 yellow/black cards (??? points)
2-3 leader played (??? points)
-3 / -6 points, due to conflict (-3 because sometimes you're lucky and got next to another player who just ignore red cards, even that in our group happens a lot)


The last few times I've been passed the leader that gives two coins when you chain something, I've tried to implement a chaining strategy. Each time it fails because I'm not passed a sufficient number of Age II cards. In my experience, that person would be lucky to get two of the five cards he or she needs for the green or blue chains in Age II, and would not have enough money to buy some of their leaders and their second or third wonder stages, and would thus finish with less than 40 points.

I would love to have someone try that strategy, with me at the table, and have them win repeatedly despite my efforts to stop them. I would certainly learn something.
 
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M. B. Downey
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Alexandria
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aleopeth7 wrote:
Maybe i had explain myself wrong, sorry but english is not my native english: i didn't mean that i play that strategy everytime, in fact i think i'm the most reactive/versatile player (not necessarily the best anyway) of my group and i play everytime keeping in consideration my wonder, my leaders, the wonder/leaders of my neighbour and so on...I was just saying that most of the time (70/80%) the winner of the game is someone who got a lot (9+) green cards. And for what i've saw, ending with at least 9 green cards isn't that difficult.


You didn't explain yourself incorrectly.

My point was that if you (or anyone) tried that strategy in any of the groups I play with, you will not do well. I think that it does do well with your specific friends is entirely up to groupthink.
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