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Runebound (Second Edition)» Forums » Variants

Subject: Speeding Up the Game - Ideas? rss

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Jonathan Franklin
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I like the game & I like the underlying system, but feel a need to shorten turns and/or the game.

Other than having everyone do movement & everyone resolve afterwards with their own combat dice, does anyone have ideas for speeding up turns?

We have started taking a non-heart chit at the start and using the shorter variant in the back (1-2, 4 adventure points = 1 experience chit).

Any other ideas?

Thanks!
 
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Brian
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If your group doesn't play much PvP, I'd recommend a staggered approach to turns... while one player is rolling their combat, the next player is rolling their movement dice and figuring out where to go.

The other players should be watching (to make sure no one is cheating) and, of course, playing cards on the other players as needed. And, if the next player wants to wait until the end of the combat, they are certainly welcome.

We found this speeds up the game (and cuts out downtime) tremendously.
 
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Jonathan Franklin
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Correct. While not cooperative, we do not seek out PvP & rarely use the hinder another player cards, as it seems non-sensical that a player in Vynelvale (what an awful name for a town) can affect the movement of someone at the other end of the board.
 
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Ava Jarvis
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On the note of the movement dice (which are what really slow the game down, deciding where to go), there's a dice board under the Files section that correalates a normal d6 face to each of the Runebound movement die faces. Since d6s are very easy to get, with a dice board per person, people can individually determine their next move.

I think of all the adventure games I've tried, the movement in Runebound is the most unique but also the slowest.
 
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Mike Betzel
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I thought up a couple of movement rules although I haven't play tested them yet to see if they mess up the game's balance:

1) If your distance from a city is equal to or less than the number of moment dice you can roll, you can move to that city without rolling. The movement dice are supposed to simulate "getting lost"; I think you could argue that if you are close enough to the city you can either see it in the distance or see well-worn paths to help you get there. Would move people along a bit more quickly if your goal is just to get to town.

2) Once in a city, on your next turn you are free to jump to any other city on the map but you will not be able to do the market phase that turn. The concept is that you received directions or a map from someone in the last city and you overextended yourself arriving to your destination in time, making you too tired to go to the market. You could do the market in your following turn if you wanted. This would help people get to a portion of the map that they need to, which would be really useful towards the end of the game. Not allowing the market phase after city-hopping would help to keep people from city-hopping and buying up goods.

I think these things would help speed up the game a bit as people would be more mobile, but as I said I haven't actually played with these rules to see what impact they have. Just some thoughts I had this morning!
 
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Kyle Johnstone
United States
Lewisville
Texas
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Speeding up this game
1. Increase money
2. Increase Exp
3. Fix the movement mechanic
4. Enhance Market steps
5. Replenish jewels more often
6. Simultaneous play

Suggestions to Speed up the Game (UnTested)
1. Game Start: Start with 5 gold instead of 3
2. Market Step: During the market step add 3 items to the market instead of 1
3. Market Step: You can sell your items for what you paid for them instead of half
3. Encounter: If gold is awarded from an encounter, double it
4. Experience: Either one of the following
a) Half the requirements to go up a level instead of 4 make it 2
b) When you trade in experience each attribute goes up by 1 instead
of just the one of your choice
5. Experience: Allow the ability trade in experience to increase your maximum health (1st edition didn't have this ability)
6. Encounter Jewels / Experience Tokens: One of the following options
a) The jewels are never removed. The character gains experience
as usual for the color but other player can encounter the same
space for the same experience. Experience can be tracked on
a scratch pad or with some other tokens such as a die or other
counter. Only red jewels are removed. (this method increases exp)
b) A player can adventure in a jeweled space without a jewel to encounter a creature for the reward from the encounter but not the exp. (this method increases gold)
c) Replenish all available (cashed in jewels) with each event card not just the indicated spots. (this method increases options, Exp, rewards)

7. Movement: Although clever, this really puts a lot of luck and frustration in the game. It also takes players an unreasonable amount of time to figure out where to go and how to match the dice taking away from the rest of the game. I came up with two ways to elimate trying to figure out the path which seems to be a lot of time wasted in the game trying figure out how to manipulate the movement dice.
a) Basic: I would suggest just let each player move 4 or 5 (if in a town) and be done with it. There's enough radomness in the game - the movement dice are not necessary in my opinion.
b) Advanced: Another method would be to assign movement costs each player has a number of movement points (MPs) and Terrain has movement costs. For example: Road/Town (1 MP), Plains (2MP), Hills (3MP), Rivers 4(MP), Swamps and Mountains (5 MP). In this example I would suggest that each character has 10 Movement Points to start with. Exhaustion Elimination would Cost (2 MP) in this example.
c) You could also assign MP to each character so that they have different movement points based on what they can do. You could also have some abilities help with movement costs (e.g. Climb is eliminates 1 movement point in hills and mountains; Swim eliminates 1 movement point in rivers and swamps)

8. Turn Mechanics: This one's a little more complicated; one of the key complaints of this game is that you have to wait a looong time before your turn and your really have nothing to do inbetween. I would suggest that all movement and actions are simultaneous. Here is how the turn would be conducted if you wanted to try this. The only complication to this method if there are characters taking the exact same action in a given space. So here is how I would resolve those situations.
a) Everyone secretly notes where his player is moving and what they are doing. Table talk is allowed
b) Actions are revealed simultaneously
c) Movement is determined and verified
d) Any Encounters are resolved simultaneously (if more than one character encounter a space they would each get their own encounter). However one could choose to encounter the other hero before the spaces' encounter. If there are two heros in a space and one wants to encounter each other they both secretly write down (combat hero, Negotiate, encounter space, No Action). They are then revealed and if there is a match then that action occurs. If not then the only conflict is combat hero. If someone selects this then the other hero is forced to take that action as the defender. However, if the defending hero survives then they can take their action next). If both choose combat then they dice off to see who is the defender. In this case the defender does not get another action.
e) market step - each player in the town performs the market step simultaneously. If two or more players decide they want the same item they dice off for who picks the item first. However, all the cards that are drawn during the market step are available for all the players there.


By simplifying movement.
By Increasing experience.
By adding more gold and items
By replenishing jewels more often
By going simultaneously

This should reduce a 3 player game down 1.5 - 2 hours. I think the movement is the key. We spend 5 min. / player determining how to manipulate the dice that were rolled. 5min x 4 players = 20 min per turn just for movement. Totally unnecessary. Then you add 5 min/player/encounter it's another 20 min. Obviously the first few turns go quickly but towards the end you're looking at 30- 40 min / turn. Thus simultaneous actions takes this down to about 10 / turn.
I think the 2-4 hours estimate is low - it's a 4 hour game with 4 players minimum without the doom track.

Those are just my thoughts. I would be interested in knowing if anyone tries any of these variants and how they work. Like I said I have not tested them but have played the game enough to see the inherent problems with the time. Feel free to try all or just some of the suggestions. Please email me if you have any comments after trying these variants.
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Lee Hodgson
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I just posted a couple of variants I have used with my kids . We dont have too many games under our belts but after a long first game these ideas came into play for our current game .
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/107299
 
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Lee Hodgson
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That movement dicevariant is definitely an idea . You could begin your turn with five movement diceand if you need to travel well established roads then dont roll . but for each space of road moved take one die away so when you want to branch off into the wildnerness of the realm then roll the last remaining to see what you can traverse in that turn . The only time this may become dangerous is when the world event ( cant recall the colour , maybe blue not sure) where the road spaces are now patrolled by an encounter .
 
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Steve Wessels
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Well, our last game incorporated a number of changes to make the game resolve faster. We played with 3 players.

Everyone started with 5 gold.

I dealt out 4 character cards to each player. They selected the one they wanted before the game began.

We paid double gold for all rewards.

Each town's market step began with 3 added cards before the player decided what to purchase.

Only 3 experience points were needed to upgrade a player.

When a player was knocked out they lost only their gold and had to restart in the nearest town.

No player vs player actions allowed. This also meant that some action cards that were meant to allow a player to interfere with or harm another player, for those cards we disallowed that action and instead paid a gold reward depending on the color of the card. Green = 2, Yellow = 4, Blue = 6.

I had extra movement dice so that we had a set for every player. They're only $1 a set from Fantasy Flight Games. This helped a little because each player had their own set to roll ahead and keep the pre-rolled dice that way while planning out their turn.

For fun, each player had a set of unique colored 2d10 dice. Again, each player having their own dice helped a little.

We also replaced all the cardboard gem markers with colored glass stones. This make the game look neater. I took some pictures of this and will upload them soon.

We used the Doom track, advancing for every 4 cards discarded.

We also have plastic laminated versions of those placemat sheets for each player. The sheets provide handy reference material for each player and provides a simple place to organize the hero's counters.

The game was fun, once again my wife won. The game took between 3.5 and 4 hours to play.
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Shawn Low
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Footscray
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Sure...play Runebound 1st Edition.
 
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Jonathan Franklin
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How about when you land on a colored token, you only draw one card, instead of drawing cards until you get a battle?

Second, the errata refer to having creatures of a different color from the token on that space. How does that happen? Am I missing something, as that has not happened in our three games.
 
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