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Spartacus: The Serpents and the Wolf Expansion Set» Forums » Variants

Subject: Declaring a Primus variant rss

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Mike Romeo
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1. I think this game is wonderfull, one of my fav, but it has two big flaws:

In the base game, the biggest flaw was the initiative roll! Since a few games, I now used the blue speed dice variants which WORKS INCREDIBLY WELL and increase the game fun and strategy WAY UP!!!

In the expension, it is now the declaration of a Primus the biggest flaw! Primi are too awesome and too much wanted in a game to not have any or in a few cases, only a single one!!!


Now maybe it's not the same in your group, but in my groupS we most of the time jump from 7-8-9 to 12 influence during the scheme phase to win the game, by discarding assets with house powers, playing a few schemes, having sufficient protection(guards, reactions) and being late enough in the scheme phase to prevent too much attack.

So when can a Primus be declared? IN THE FEW GAMES where this strategy doesn't succeed? Even then there is not always incitative to declare a primus when you are at 10, and none when you are at 11.

If you see more than one Primus in your game, or if you have at least one in most of your games, please explain me how this happens!!!

Now what I would like here is to propose my two variants suggestions and have your comments on them, and also hear from your variants!!



2. So here they are:

First : The same mechanic than in Cyclades : Hades expension, where each turn (not phase) a die is rolled, and its value is added to the total of the previous dice rolled in the earlier turns. If the new total equals of exceed a certain number, than this is a Primus ROUND!!! the next Host HAS to declare one, or maybe have the choice between declaring one and losing an influence, don't know yet. After that, reset to total dice value and go on again...

Second suggestion : The first Dominus to get to 4 influence can now declare a primus during the game OR even call for one to be declared by someone else at the cost of -1 influence if the other dominus refuse. The same thing with the first to 8 and keep the rules of 10 and more.

What do you think?




I personnally think that the arena phase should consists of about 33% Primi/Single fights with a minimum of 25% to a maximum of 50%. A game is between what, 7 to 12-13 turns? that would mean about 3-4 primi per game, and that would be AWESOME! With sometimes less (1 or 2) and a very few times more (4-5)! That would still keep them Special, but would get them going also!!!!

PS: this is the ONLY game that I play with some house rules, so don't think I'm a house rules freak!!!
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Nathaniel GOUSSET
France
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I agree with your points.

But I dislike the idea to track a number.

Anyway, I think the trouble is: What is a primus ?

In the TV set a primus happened only once as the innauguration of the new arena.So it is indeed a rare event.

People like the primus mechanic because it made for a larger melee and more player involved into arena fight.

I think the primus shouldn't be related to the influence of the player, but tied to another element, and possibly need to be buyed.

Another suggestion I would made is that in 5+ player game there is to be 2 fight every round. Not just one.
 
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Mike Romeo
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Not only because more people are involved... also because the fight is more interesting!!! More strategy! Harder to predict the outcome when accepting to fight and when betting! More turnover, etc etc!!!


And what about celebrating a new High-end Position in Capua (reaching X influences) with a Primus set-up by the new favorite of Capua, or at his orders!!!
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Syn Egg
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1) I like the idea of having an automatic primus when a player reaches a certain influence for the first time in a game e.g. 7 influence or something.

2) Another suggestion is that because the primus is such a huge spectacle, the host must pay more in order to prepare for the festivities. Therefore perhaps a host can call a primus at less than 10 influence, but they must pay extra gold for each influence that is missing.

In game play terms this is balanced because the host has a massive advantage in a primus so it would make sense that it costs them more to hold one.

3) Another idea is that each player is allowed to call 1 and only 1 primus in the whole game and you have to choose strategically when to use it.
 
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Mike Romeo
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Good Ideas also!! In fact all we want is a little more Primii in our games!!! And not only at the end!

In fact I would like one at mid game and one or two towards the endgame! OR one at the third of the game, one at 2/3 and one towards the end!!!
 
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John Karma
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We changed the spectacle of blood and death card so that it now gives +1 influence to the person who plays it and also to the host, unless it's played by the host himself, in which case it functions normally. Typically people were selling those cards instead of playing them because they weren't able to get hosting rights and didn't want to directly benefit the host at the expense of a card. Now we generally end up with 2 or 3 primuses per game, which I've found to be sufficient.
 
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Chris J Davis
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What is the big advantage of a primus? Why not simply allow the Host to hold one whenever he wants? Or just make them compulsory for all combats in a 5-6 player game?
 
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Pedro Sequeira
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completely agree!

we need more primus xD

but one every round is too much.. so i like the idea of the dice rolling to make it random, while still controlling more or less whats the chance of it happening.

just not sure if i would do it before or after the bidding.. doing it before is more thematic i guess, but having it happen after (and perhaps rolling the 6 for the ~17% chance of a primus and ruining someone's plans sounds great
 
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Chris J Davis
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We actually tried just having a primus every time if playing with 5-6 players and it worked wonderfully.
 
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Mike Smith
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Shadow of Death expansion - Festival cards bring plenty of Primuses.
 
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Vincent Vega
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What about. Hold a primus when a player reach 5,7 and 9 influence. That would be 3 primi for sure + other primi with cards and when you reach 10.
 
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Mara Suikanen
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(Long time lurker, first time poster. Hiya Spartacus fans!)

Whenever we slap Spartacus on the table, we use a house rule that makes every 3rd arena phase of the game a Primus. Everyone knows this in advance and can hoard money for the purpose accordingly.

Thematically, I guess this would translate to something like "you have an arena bout once a month, and the Primus is the main event of spring/summer/autumn/winter, possibly celebrating the change of the season".

As the groups I've introduced Spartacus to usually tend to begin from 5-7 influence, this usually pans out to 2 Primi per game.

Also John's idea about changing the Spectacle of Blood etc card to be appealing to play sounds great - have to try it today for even more sizzling Primus action!
 
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