I have been testing a variant that has turned out to make this a much more fun game. It removes all of the bidding rules and adds a random element to the game. There is howerver, still strategy in selecting which area to start, as well as deciding if you wish to change direction, and when to exhange tokens for die rerolls.
In addition to the game you need a normal dice (D6), and one marker for each player. Preferebly some sort of character that gives a clear indication of which direction the "character" is moving (toys, dolls, legos etc).
All the pieces are placed randomly in a loop (cirle-ish) on a large table (or the floor).
All players throw the dice, highest die roll starts.
The six "starting blocks" (the ones with red text on them) should now be positioned somewhat randomly throughout the cirle. The beginning player chooses one of these pieces as the beginning point, as well as the direction of movement. The beginning block is taken out of the cirle and placed in front of the player. The next player chooses its starting position and swaps the beginning block of his or her choice with the character. Remember to also make a decision on which way you wish to move.
After all players have selected where to start and placed the beginning block in front of them, any remaining starting blocks are removed. The beginning player throws the die and moves the equivalent number of places in the cirlce, picks up the building block, and places the piece in his or her tower. On a roll of 6, the player may choose to change direction, depending on which direction gives the best building block.
If the player lands on, and subsequently places a red building block (which are genreally more difficult to place), he or she is given one of the crystal tokens. This token can ble discarded in exhange for a die reroll. This reroll stands, even if the die shows the same as the initial throw. Optionally, each player may start with one or more reroll tokens. We generally start with one reroll to avoid getting screwed over by a bad block early in the game.
The goal is to keep the tower stable for the highest number of rounds. One a player is unable to place his or her block without toppeling the tower, he or she is out of the game. If the players actually manages to run out of building blocks (a viable problem with 4-6 players), the player with the higest tower at the end of the game wins. For each round, make sure that there are enough building block for each player. If not, the round ends. For example, if 6 persons are playing, and notice that there are only 5 pieces left when the beginning player is about to start a new round, the game ends the player with the tallest tower wins.
As in the normal rules, only the starting block is allowed to touch the table. It is not allowed to move or touch any block from a previous round with your hands, but you may move things around by pushing (or pulling) with the block you are currently placing. But the only block your fingers are allower to touch is the block you are placing.
To our great surprise, we often end up lasting a lot longer in this variant than in any of the standard game modes. It sounds more difficult, but somehow we often end up with the most amazing constructions. Because of the random nature, you are forced to use pieces you would otherwise never use, and discover new ways to think about placement. Thus far in the playtesting, the record is 26 rounds.
I would reccomend continuing even after a winner is decleared, just to see how many rounds you can go. This adds a personal challenge as well.
Any feedback is appreciated.
Teik Chooi Oh
Just got my game & played 1st time yesterday. Sounds like a variant worth trying!
Sometimes the group simply cannot focus on the bidding system. This seems an incredibly effective alternative for it!
And it also seems to be a viable single mode, even though most of the fun of Bausack is to watch how the crowd reacts to the piece placements.
Anyway... I have just gotten my Bausack too and don't have friends here to play with me. I'm definitely trying this right now.
I checked out this variant months ago. Ever since it has been the only variant of Bausack we play. The most fun in Bausack is building the towers - big and creative towers, and in this variant it happens often. Nearly every time
Lately we have added a "mulligan"-rule to the game. You are once allowed to drop a piece or two (no more) from the tower without losing the game. You must put the pieces immediately right back to where they were in the tower.
Thanks a lot for OP! I really recommend this game variant. Not a strategy game (although a bit strategy too) but a lot of FUN!