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Subject: Will my group enjoy this game rss

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Andrew Williams
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Obviously that's impossible to answer, so more specifically, based on the following, is my group *likely* to enjoy this gamme.

We now favour low luck based, deeper games, our current favourites being Manhattan Project and T'zolkin. With that in mind I've started looking around for other games that I hope will fit in. Burgundy looked to fit the bill and the reviews were good but when I saw the box open and dice come out my heart sank, and I can imagine the same thing happening to my group. However, and hence the reason for posting, is this a luck based game or are the dice used in some other way?
 
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-matt s.
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There are random tile draws (but only for setting up each of the 5 rounds - and there are a LOT that come out - and if you play a 4p game, they ALL come out eventually) and yes you roll the dice which affects what you can do. However, the dice are more a 'limiting' factor narrowing your choices each turn. Yes, this can screw you over occasionally, but there's almost always something useful to do with the dice.

And, there are workers that help you adjust the dice values, and tiles that let you adjust them as well as a permanent ability. There are a large range of options for using the dice such as tile placement, grabbing tiles, shipping goods, getting workers, etc. Plus there are tiles that let you take any tile or place certain tiles, or the castles that let you do any one action you want. The key to this game is finding and maximizing combos based on the dice roll you have, or setting yourself up for one later.

I love Tzolkin and I love this game as well. Yes, there is luck in rolling the dice. But it isn't anything like in an Ameritrash game where you can win or 'die' by the roll.
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Carthoris Pyramidos
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There is certainly luck, but there are a lot of ways to mitigate it.

I would say that the luck has more to do with the tile draws at the top of each phase (which determine availability of animal, buildings, and goods types, as well as tiles for purchase) than the dice rolls. There is a "worker" mechanism that allows players to spend to modify dice rolls.

Edited to add: I agree that there is always something useful to do with your dice roll. There's no such thing as a "failed" roll.
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Stephen McHale
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People smarter than me (and that is a lot) will respond better than I can but I will say this:

I love this game.
I also love Tzolkin.
I have Manhattan Project on my wishlist.

So my gut say yes.
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Tim Schmitt
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I'd suggest checking out one or more of the video reviews from the game's BGG page; they'll give you a good sense of gameplay. I think you'll find that there's not as much luck as you might fear from the quantity of dice in the game.
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Dave Eisen
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The dice can be annoying if they go very much not your way. Otherwise, the dice luck seems very manageable as a way to drive you to take certain actions over others, but not an overwhelming element controlling your play. Tile draw order luck seems more substantive to me, actually.

I like it (and generally prefer low luck heavier Euro games), but will only play with 4. The luck of which tiles just never make it into the game ruin the game for me at other player counts.

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Gar Per
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Sunmachine wrote:
Obviously that's impossible to answer, so more specifically, based on the following, is my group *likely* to enjoy this gamme.

We now favour low luck based, deeper games, our current favourites being Manhattan Project and T'zolkin. With that in mind I've started looking around for other games that I hope will fit in. Burgundy looked to fit the bill and the reviews were good but when I saw the box open and dice come out my heart sank, and I can imagine the same thing happening to my group. However, and hence the reason for posting, is this a luck based game or are the dice used in some other way?
Luck is still low in this game. This game will be fine. Here is what mitigates the dice factor:

1) You can manipulate the dice result using workers
2) You can acquire estate tiles that give your rolls more flexibility.
3) Most importantly - there is very little in this game that needs to be done RIGHT NOW in this game if you manage your board properly.

I saw right after my first play that HOW you play was a huge component of this game. Keep your reserve tiles from getting full so you can always take tactical advantage of grabbing a sweet tile. Keep a good variety of shipping tiles so you have options. Build to areas where you have greater dice result options. Do all of this while staying open to quick tactical risks to grab a key tile, close an area earlier, pull off a huge combo, etc.

All the euro gamers in my group love this game.
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Adam Smiles
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It's an excellent game with relatively low luck.

The dice are indicators. You roll a 2 and a 5, you can buy something from bin 2 or bin 5. Or build something on space 2 or space 5. You roll the dice and then decide what to do with them. As the dice are only indicators, a 6 isn't absolutely better or worse than a 1.

You can also use workers to modify the dice to numbers you want. So those who are worried about getting screwed over by the dice, can invest in workers to mitigate the luck. The "bad" rolls are usually doubles, but only in the sense that you limit your options. Most times you can do something useful with 2 of the same number, even if they're not your first choice of potential actions.
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Andrew Williams
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Incredible - so many thoughtful replies in such a short space of time. Thanks so much. Tzolkin is definitely our current favourite but with several replies here saying they love both I feel confident my group will too.

Thanks again.

Might I also ask what other games of this ilk might be worth checking out? I have Terra Mystica and Co2 on my radar at the moment. I don’t dislike all luck in games as long as it doesn’t effectively decide the winner, eg I’m playing 6 player Twilight Imperium this Sunday which is heavy dice dependent for combat.
 
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Bryan Thunkd
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nate_lockhart wrote:
1) You can manipulate the dice result using workers
2) You can acquire estate tiles that give your rolls more flexibility.
3) Most importantly - there is very little in this game that needs to be done RIGHT NOW in this game if you manage your board properly.
There is also a dynamic tension in the game where you have to decide...

a) Do you place tiles in spots that extend your reach, giving you access to more spaces and thus making more die rolls useful (as you now border spaces with more die values shown)

or

b) Do you concentrate on finishing areas and getting the higher early completion bonuses?

I once watched a player finish an area with a building which scored him the early completion bonus. Then he snagged one of the juicy knowledge tiles. Unfortunately that left him with two ships and a knowledge tile, all of which could only be placed on a roll of a six. On his next turn when he failed to roll a six, he proceeded to complain about his bad luck and how the game was too luck based.

I tried to explain to him that if he had given up getting the early completion bonus on that turn and built his building in a different spot it would have bordered several water spots which would have meant he had more spots (and more die values) he could have used to place ships. And that if he had taken a building instead of the juicy knowledge tile that he could have have more spots (and die values) where he could have built that.

I told him that he couldn't really complain about needing an exact 6 roll when he ignored actions that would change that situation and took actions that forced him into that situation. But no, he insisted that the game was too luck based and had little to do with the way he was (mis)playing it.
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Mark Raciborski
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You will not enjoy the first game, ours went for 5 hours, 4 players, mainly because of having to re-lookup those ICONS over and over from the rulebook.

Download one of those cheat sheets found in the Files Forum, give everyone a copy, people will use their downtime studying, matching the tiles. Our second game was a little over 2.5 hours. We enjoy this game a lot. Only complaint, game feels a little cheaply made.

I like the randomness that the dice add to the game, you can get roll "+/-" modifier tokens and use them. Very enjoyable game, but, it is for a regular group of game players, do not whip this out on guest aka your Monopoly buddies, buy Lords of Waterdeep for that role.

I so want to try Bora Bora, however, I am not sure if TCoB is our limit. BB seems like a bit too much of a good thing.

So my question is "Will my group enjoy" Bora Bora?

PS, this is one game where I found the reviews and the kinds of comments posted driving me away from the game, including my comments, come on dice in a game, are you nuts? I only purchased it because I picked it up for $20 right after it came out and figured for $20 "how bad can it be", I glad I did, dice are good, go figure.
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Patrick Fournier
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Thunkd wrote:
There is also a dynamic tension in the game where you have to decide...

a) Do you place tiles in spots that extend your reach, giving you access to more spaces and thus making more die rolls useful (as you now border spaces with more die values shown)

or

b) Do you concentrate on finishing areas and getting the higher early completion bonuses?
+1. I also agree that the luck factor is pretty small, probably even smaller than most people think. It is definitely there, but at a very acceptable level imho. The tricky thing is you might not see it that way after only a few games, it takes a while before you can find a nice equilibrium between what Thunkd describes...

Good players try to maximize the probability of doing something useful with the dice, whatever the dice give you...

If you look at online sites like Boîte à Jeux, you'll see that players have a ranking based on their results. If luck were an important factor, you wouldn't see players do consistently better than others.

In other words, luck is an excuse for the losers.
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Agnieszka
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Sunmachine wrote:
Incredible - so many thoughtful replies in such a short space of time. Thanks so much. Tzolkin is definitely our current favourite but with several replies here saying they love both I feel confident my group will too.

Thanks again.

Might I also ask what other games of this ilk might be worth checking out? I have Terra Mystica and Co2 on my radar at the moment. I don’t dislike all luck in games as long as it doesn’t effectively decide the winner, eg I’m playing 6 player Twilight Imperium this Sunday which is heavy dice dependent for combat.
5 cents from me: I disliked dice in games in general but after trying out Castles of Burgundy I changed my mind: cleverly used dice are a great game mechanism!

Recently I bought another Feld game, Bora Bora, and I think it's heavier than Castles and also the components are of better quality. It also uses dice cleverly, so if you try Castles and like it, I recommend you grab this one too
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Jonathan Challis
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Sunmachine wrote:

Might I also ask what other games of this ilk might be worth checking out?
Troyes, Bora Bora and Macao are all diced based, but not luck ruled, and heavy strategy games.

Alien Frontiers and Stone Age are both good for lighter fare. Someone will probably suggest Kingsburg but honestly I'd skip it.
 
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Dave Eisen
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aniaga wrote:
Sunmachine wrote:
Incredible - so many thoughtful replies in such a short space of time. Thanks so much. Tzolkin is definitely our current favourite but with several replies here saying they love both I feel confident my group will too.

Thanks again.

Might I also ask what other games of this ilk might be worth checking out? I have Terra Mystica and Co2 on my radar at the moment. I don’t dislike all luck in games as long as it doesn’t effectively decide the winner, eg I’m playing 6 player Twilight Imperium this Sunday which is heavy dice dependent for combat.
5 cents from me: I disliked dice in games in general but after trying out Castles of Burgundy I changed my mind: cleverly used dice are a great game mechanism!

Recently I bought another Feld game, Bora Bora, and I think it's heavier than Castles and also the components are of better quality. It also uses dice cleverly, so if you try Castles and like it, I recommend you grab this one too
Do not assume this is universal among fans of Castles of Burgundy. Bora Bora also does an effective job of minimizing the amount of luck good dice bring: higher dice are more powerful, but lower dice are more flexible. Pretty sure higher is still better but it is not always the case.

But that does not mean that Bora Bora is a good game. Castles of Burgundy has a nice coherence to it where your actions are simple and fit together well to build something. Bora Bora falls more into the victory point salad world that Feld sometimes veers into. It feels like you are less in control than you are in Castles of Burgundy.

 
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Bryan Thunkd
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dkeisen wrote:
But that does not mean that Bora Bora is a good game. Castles of Burgundy has a nice coherence to it where your actions are simple and fit together well to build something. Bora Bora falls more into the victory point salad world that Feld sometimes veers into. It feels like you are less in control than you are in Castles of Burgundy.
I won't argue that it has the "victory point salad" aspect but I don't think that means you have less control, nor that it isn't a good game.

If you like Trajan and the "victory point salad" aspect of that game then you will enjoy it in Bora Bora as well. Bora Bora is the love child of Castles of Burgundy and Trajan.
 
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