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Twilight Imperium (Third Edition): Shattered Empire» Forums » Variants

Subject: SC#8 "Imperial Bureaucracy" rss

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Scott Randolph
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I like the SE SC#8 "Bureaucracy" card, I think it adds a powerful and interesting mechanic to the game, the ability to claim an objective during a game round. What I feel is missing, and reduces the importance of Mecatol Rex, is the additional VP one can gain by controlling Mecatol Rex when playing with "Imperial II."

As a variant, what if the capability to claim an additional VP for controlling Mecatol Rex were added to "Bureaucracy" making it SC#8 "Imperial Bureaucracy?"

Thoughts?
 
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Adrian Pop
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A number of Bonus counters, the possibility to immediately qualify for a revealed objective and the possibility to somewhat manipulate the card order should be enough incentive to pick Bureaucracy.

It is not an obvious advantage such as Technology, Trade or Warfare, but the player who picks it when everybody ignores it usually has an advantage in the late game.

Adding a VP for controlling Mecatol Rex would be an interesting variant, although I think it would make the card a tad too powerful for the holder.
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Scott Randolph
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Tretiak wrote:
A number of Bonus counters, the possibility to immediately qualify for a revealed objective and the possibility to somewhat manipulate the card order should be enough incentive to pick Bureaucracy.

It is not an obvious advantage such as Technology, Trade or Warfare, but the player who picks it when everybody ignores it usually has an advantage in the late game.

Adding a VP for controlling Mecatol Rex would be an interesting variant, although I think it would make the card a tad too powerful for the holder.


As written, the SC allows for only a maximum number of objectives to be claimed as two. One thing that speeds up the game is more scoring. Mecatol Rex is sort of "fluff" in my opinion, except for Secret Objectives which require its control, but once these SO's are claimed, MR can be vacated by the claiming player, MR is really not the "throne" or "seat of power" I think it ought to be. SC#8 "Bureaucracy" is a powerful card (bonus counters notwithstanding, bonus counters apply to all SC's), and the ability to claim an objective during a game round was a burst of design genius in my opinion, but, (again in my opinion) it lacks the incentive to control MR with the associated bonus VP. We recently played a 4 player TLW game (to [14] VP's) and were done in five game rounds. It was really fun. We played that a player could choose either SC#8 "Bureaucracy" or SC#8 "Imperial II" as the eighth SC (both were not in play during any one game round, a player had to choose one or the other). We were also playing "Age of Empire" as an optional rule.

I'm looking for a single SC#8 as a blended version of "Imperial II" and "Bureaucracy."
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Martin Larouche
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Bureaucracy is the most powerful card of the alternate set.
I wouldn't make it even more powerful, but that's just me.

It allows you to claim an additional objective.
It allows you to manipulate the objectives, making you put easy objectives for you and hard for others, providing you with VP some others can't get.

It's tied directly to the VP mechanic, while all other cards are indirect.
Technology is always interesting to take... but unless there's a specific tech-related objective in play, it won't get you any closer to winning the game outide giving some small benefits to achieve other objectives. Same with the other cards.

In the late game, it's especially useful. It's a fight every turn in our group to get it. Assembly gets taken for the speaker token just so next turn we can avoid a specific player from taking Bureaucracy.
The leading player always want to take Bureaucracy in order to turn up the Imperium "game over" card. The other players always want to take Bureaucracy to prevent the same card from turning up and delaying the end game to try to catch up to the leader.

My opinion is that Bureaucracy is perfect the way it is.

If you want to boost Mecatol Rex's interest to produce more fights over it, i would maybe suggest boosting it's stats. Maybe use the Lazax homeworld Mecatol Rex tile from Shards of the Throne instead of the original "destroyed planet" one. It has good production and awesome influence and would be more attractive to fight over as it's the best planet on the board.

Maybe another solution would be to simply put an artifact on it? It makes thematical sense and would make all players fight for it, while only providing a single VPs that won't change such a critical card as bureaucracy? It's a VP that would be put on the board anyhow...
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Scott Randolph
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deedob wrote:
Bureaucracy is the most powerful card of the alternate set.
I wouldn't make it even more powerful, but that's just me.

It allows you to claim an additional objective.
It allows you to manipulate the objectives, making you put easy objectives for you and hard for others, providing you with VP some others can't get.

It's tied directly to the VP mechanic, while all other cards are indirect.
Technology is always interesting to take... but unless there's a specific tech-related objective in play, it won't get you any closer to winning the game outide giving some small benefits to achieve other objectives. Same with the other cards.

In the late game, it's especially useful. It's a fight every turn in our group to get it. Assembly gets taken for the speaker token just so next turn we can avoid a specific player from taking Bureaucracy.
The leading player always want to take Bureaucracy in order to turn up the Imperium "game over" card. The other players always want to take Bureaucracy to prevent the same card from turning up and delaying the end game to try to catch up to the leader.

My opinion is that Bureaucracy is perfect the way it is.

If you want to boost Mecatol Rex's interest to produce more fights over it, i would maybe suggest boosting it's stats. Maybe use the Lazax homeworld Mecatol Rex tile from Shards of the Throne instead of the original "destroyed planet" one. It has good production and awesome influence and would be more attractive to fight over as it's the best planet on the board.

Maybe another solution would be to simply put an artifact on it? It makes thematical sense and would make all players fight for it, while only providing a single VPs that won't change such a critical card as bureaucracy? It's a VP that would be put on the board anyhow...


Just to give some helpful background to provide perspective on why I really like the above variant Strategy Card:
a. we play AoE, and don't want to play the "Red Tape" variant with "Bureaucracy," it slows down scoring
b. we play TLW, so speeding up scoring is very beneficial
c. putting an artifact on MR is a reasonable idea, but just moving an artifact to a different location doesn't add more potential VP's to the game
d. only "Imperial II" provides a bonus VP for controlling MR
e. we don't play the RAW version of "Bureaucracy" - again, slows down scoring

We recently played a game where there were two options on the SC#8 card, choosing "Bureaucracy" added another Objective card of the appropriate stage to the game. We finished a 4-player TLW game to [14] VP's in 5 game rounds. While we all really liked playing this way, we thought it would be better to have just a single #8 SC, since either one is so powerful. Unlike "Imperial II" which allows unlimited scoring (and we have had players score [6], or even [7], VP's in a single game round), the above variant SC#8 "Imperial Bureaucracy" does limit the scoring to a small degree, and provides a real incentive to control MR (which thematically we really like, and is completely absent from all versions of the game without "Imperial II," unless you just move an existing artifact there)

In November'11, we played a 6-player TLW game to [14] VP's, and at 9 game rounds, after over 12 hours of play, we stopped because no one had yet scored [14] VP's. We were playing the "Red Tape" version of "Bureaucracy" for SC#8. "Red Tape" "Bureaucracy" is fun, and an interesting variant, but the "locked up" Objectives only served to slow down scoring to the point where even at 9 game rounds with experienced players, we still didn't play the game to completion, and had to declare an arbitrary winner (rather unsatisfying).
 
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Alwin Derijck
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Scott,

I think your blend of both Imperial II and Bureaucracy is an interesting twist to the game.
We usually work with the Imperial II SC because it allows VP scoring with Mecatol Rex. I personally feel this is essential for the flavor of the game and it combines well with a lot of the secret objectives and some of the public ones.

Never used Bureaucracy SC in our group for the fact that is slows down scoring.
I was considering the red tape variant, but this seems to have the same problem.

Are you thinking of posting an image of the "Imperial Bureaucracy" SC with a summary of the variant rules?

Thanks for the info.

cheers,
Alwin
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Alwin Derijck
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PS

Scott, I would very much appreciate it if you could combine the "Double Warfare SC" variant with the "Imperial-Bureaucracy".

After testing both Warfare's, we ended up sticking with Warfare I, for its versatility. Returning one Command Counter to your command pool can be used for a lot of things. However, the Warfare II provides extra mobility (and punch), especially useful with those sluggish Flagships or to make a sneak attack deep into enemy lines. I am looking forward to trying the double Warfare variant to generate the much needed flexibility.

cheers Alwin
 
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Scott Randolph
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Alwin wrote:
PS

Scott, I would very much appreciate it if you could combine the "Double Warfare SC" variant with the "Imperial-Bureaucracy".

After testing both Warfare's, we ended up sticking with Warfare I, for its versatility. Returning one Command Counter to your command pool can be used for a lot of things. However, the Warfare II provides extra mobility (and punch), especially useful with those sluggish Flagships or to make a sneak attack deep into enemy lines. I am looking forward to trying the double Warfare variant to generate the much needed flexibility.

cheers Alwin


Thanks for the positive feedback, for the record, "Imperial-Bureaucracy" for SC#8 has been the standard way for playing games at my house for several games now, it works flawlessly.

I could upload a picture, it's nothing special though, I used MS-Publisher to print text on a 4-sided polygon shaped colored border box, and printed it on adhesive label paper, then stuck it on the strategy card, then used black permanent marker to black out old text that could still be seen.

On a combined "Warfare I-II" SC#6, not sure how I would do that just yet, I too prefer the base game "Warfare" - it's very powerful.
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Alwin Derijck
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Hi Scott,

with regard to the #6 SC, I meant the variant where you use both the Warfare I and Warfare II combined.

Have you played with this very often? How well does it work?

Interesting that you guys also prefer the good old Warfare I over the fancy "high alert" one.

cheers,
Alwin
 
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Scott Randolph
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Alwin wrote:
Hi Scott,

with regard to the #6 SC, I meant the variant where you use both the Warfare I and Warfare II combined.

Have you played with this very often? How well does it work?

Interesting that you guys also prefer the good old Warfare I over the fancy "high alert" one.

cheers,
Alwin


We never actually combined them, a player was allowed to choose either "Warfare" or "Warfare II" if they selected SC#6 during the strategy phase (only one of the two cards could be used during the game round, not both).

I could probably come up with something for combining the two, I have been thinking along those lines for awhile...shake
 
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frank gallagher
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Sorry for the newbie question, but what's TLW?
 
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Scott Randolph
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frankgallagher wrote:
Sorry for the newbie question, but what's TLW?


TLW = "The Long War" game to [14] VP's, instead of [10] ("SW" = Standard War or "Short War")
 
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frank gallagher
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Thanks. And I really like the thinking behind the Imperial Bureaucracy card. I'll see if my group wants to play it next time. One us--my son actually--just got the base game, and we loved the first play. I'm seriously considering getting Shattered Empire to start adding stuff.
 
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Scott Randolph
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frankgallagher wrote:
Thanks. And I really like the thinking behind the Imperial Bureaucracy card. I'll see if my group wants to play it next time. One us--my son actually--just got the base game, and we loved the first play. I'm seriously considering getting Shattered Empire to start adding stuff.


You should definitely get Shattered Empire! Try "AoE" (Age of Empire) with the 1,3,4 SC combination from the base game, and 2,5,6,7 and "Imperial II" for SC#8 from the SE expn.

After that, then I would try ALL of the SE SC's, with my "Imperial-Bureaucracy" for SC#8 in the "AoE" version of the game, I think the progression will seem apparent then.

Have fun, welcome to the "addiction" that is TI3!
(SFRR)
 
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Alwin Derijck
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The SC card is up for download here
www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/86272/imperial-bureaucracy-va...

Cheers Alwin
 
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