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Alhambra» Forums » Variants

Subject: Scoring Variant rss

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Jay Ackerman
United States
Palm Beach
FLORIDA
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Just started playing this game recently. The first game I played, we accidentally scored incorrectly. This only affects second/third round scoring (as will be clear). What we did was take everyone who was tied with the most (say most purples) and divided just the first place score among them. Then we took everyone tied with the second most and divided the second place score among them. (And same for third place score in the last round.) This made for some craziness where the three people tied for first each got less than the one guy in second!

Well, the second game we played, the scoring was corrected. I feel the game had more strategy involved with the crazy scoring. Anybody try this, accidentally or on purpose? Comments?
 
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brian
United States
Cedar Lake
Indiana
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I would have thought you discovered how this is too crazy in your first play. Why should 2nd place be rewarded more for having less? How is this more strategic? You have very little control over what you can score.

Under the proper way, you can at least try to build as many as the first place player in a color. You bring his points down by dropping him from first to a tie for second. But you bring everyone down the same dropping 2nd place to third and so on. You have advanced yourself - by increasing your standing and decreasing everyone else.

With this variant, you have no such control. Others bring you down and advance others ahead of you. You introduce too much luck into it now because we don't know when the scoring is going to trigger. But instead of rewarding those who have worked harder, they get punished.

It's your game, do what you want. But I see no improvement to the game with this type of scoring.
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Runcible Spoon
United States
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SliceOfBread wrote:
I feel the game had more strategy involved with the crazy scoring.


I am not trying to be pedantic but this is probably the most important phrase in the post but it is the least elaborated.

How specifically does the 'crazy' scoring result in a more strategic game? I emphasized more because that is another important part of the claim, not just that it has a different strategy but that it in fact has more strategy as mentioned in your OP.

I'll be interested in seeing your response.
 
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Jay Ackerman
United States
Palm Beach
FLORIDA
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Good point. Let me first note that all (4!) times we've played it has been with 5 or 6 players. Whether that makes any difference, I don't know. Also, I'm basing this on the way the rules were explained to me (and I remember them). I've only actually read a couple of snippets.

The added strategy I see would be things like: removing a tile to drop out of a multi-way tie for first; putting more things in reserve to see if you can accumulate enough to pass multi-way tie (e.g. 3 people with 2 each, you have 1, buy 2nd and place in reserve); if you are tied for 2nd with one and first has two then adding another will a)help you (but not as much as normal scoring) b) hurt current first place (more than normal scoring) c) help current person tied for 2nd (normally hurts).

That's what I can think of off the top of my head.

Perhaps say I felt the game "had more strategy" was incorrect. Maybe I should have said "more interesting". The scoring as it is is, well, normal. The inadvertent variation was different from what I've seen before. And that made it interesting because the strategy wasn't so clear.

I doubt I will get a chance to try it again. The game owner (who didn't play the first time I did) seemed none too interested in it.
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Runcible Spoon
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Thanks for the response so have a thumbsup

As far as variants go I tend to be the kind of person that thinks 'to each their own' so if you found it more interesting then I am sure you in fact found it more interesting.

Even though I tend to enjoy variants of some games I think I wouldn't care for this variant myself.

For example, we come to the 3rd scoring round and 2 players each have 5 towers. They tie for first. The third player has 1 tower.

Under the official scoring rules it would be:

Players 1 and 2: Each score 10 as they are tied for towers with 5 each.
Player 3: They scores 6 because they only have 1 tower.

Under the this variant the soring would be

Players 1 and 2: Score 10 with 5 towers each
Player 3: Scores 13 with 1 tower

My argument against this as a variant is that it defeats one of the major mechanics of the game, set collection, by rewarding the player who had the lowest achievement with the highest score.

To make a somewhat shaky analogy to schooling it is like awarding the highest grade in the class to the lowest scoring student, so it defeats the motivation to achieve at the highest level.

Now I don't like Alhambra with more than 3 players, and I like it a lot with just 2 + Dirk because you can really directly impact your opponent by taking money they want, grabbing a tile or other interesting things if you use some expansions.

As a 5 or 6 player game I find it a luck based snooze-fest and would rather play something else because by teh time it comes back around to your turn the money has changed a lot, if not entirely, and the building market has changed a lot, if not entirely, so long term planning in those two arenas is reduced to just about nil. So if I can screw over the scoring leaders by grabbing a tile and forcing a tie then maybe it is more interesting. I would say this is like putting lip stick on a pig but that's why I don't play 5 or 6 player.
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Jay Ackerman
United States
Palm Beach
FLORIDA
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I can see how in a 2 or 3 player game would be very different from a 5 or 6 player (as you described).

As for your example, under the variant scoring perhaps player 1 or 2 would be better off by removing tower tile? That would increase their own score by 3 (to 13), increase the player they were tied with by 10 (to 20) and decrease the third player by 7 (to 6).

Hopefully I'll get to try the game with 2 or 3 players, as, like you, I'm not too thrilled with the 5/6 player game. Perhaps if you find yourself staring at another 5/6 player snooze-fest you might give this a try. Or not.

Thanks for giving this some thought!
 
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