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Subject: Diceless Variant (Playtested) rss

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Chris Flood
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The dice mechanism in Perikles is its #1 and frequently only complaint. For many players, the excellent one-roll odds table reduces the amount of dice rolling enough to make the game palatable, but others might want to eliminate it entirely. That's where this variant comes in.

Diceless Combat Variant for Perikles

Remove the dice and Battle Tokens from the game.

For both the first and second battles, give the defender a +1 bonus. (This does not apply if the city is undefended.) The side with the greater strength automatically wins.

The winner of the first battle gets +2 for the second battle. The Persian Fleet and Thessalanian Allies tiles provide a +2 bonus instead of a Battle Token.

In case of a tie, the battle is too close to call, and the fickle gods must intervene. Flip a coin to determine the winner. Alternatively, you may decide before the game to have ties always resolve in favor of the attacker or defender.

That's it!
 
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Peter Mumford
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Re: Diceless Variant
Cool! I'd be thrilled if this works well. How many times have you played this variant?
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Chris Flood
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Re: Diceless Variant
photocurio wrote:
How many times have you played this variant?


None yet. We did do the one-roll variant last night, which is about as sterile as this is in the combat phase, but still has occasional and annoying surprises. At one point last night, I had to roll an 8 or less on d100 and got a 4. In other circumstances, I might have been pleased, but in this case I simply felt like I had cheated my opponent out of winning a battle. This diceless variant simply would have given him the well-earned victory.
 
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Chris Flood
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Re: Diceless Variant
Finally got this to the table with the players from our previous game as well as some new ones. Nobody felt the game was "missing" anything by removing the dice, and everyone agreed they saw no need to add them back in. Battles resolved quickly the way they were "supposed" to. The game's losers complained about stuff like bashing the leader and missing a key strategy rather than some lucky roll. Overall, I think it was an improvement, and I don't see ever going back to the original design.
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Chris Flood
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Re: Diceless Variant (Now Playtested)
Just tried this again, and I really didn't miss the dice. There are some games in which dice add some necessary suspense; I've gone from omitting them to adding them back in when I play MECCG. But here the "blind bidding"/bluffing of stacking up your units prior to the battle is more than enough suspense for me.

Only two battles came down to a coin flip, and the winner wasn't involved in either one. Still, it is possible that the game could be decided by a coin toss, and if that bothers you then just pick who will win ties before the game.
 
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