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Subject: 2-Player; how deep, replayable, strategic for two? rss

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Ken Dilloo
United States
Bothell
Washington
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Everything is relative to perception, and your perception is limited.
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The Ginger Ninja
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Yes, absolutely. All these qualities in spades. I play mostly 2-P, with the wife. She takes particular glee in cutting off resources, and even more when she actually scores a win.

I would never relegate this to a family game.
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Justin Fuhrmann
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Harrison
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Most of my games are 2p, and we find that Agricola has a lot of replayability, and is pretty strategic. The replayability comes from the cards. The base game comes with a lot of cards, there are almost infinite combinations you could have before ever getting the same hand twice.

As far as multiple paths to victory, Agricola does not have this in the sense that a game like, say, Trajan does, where you can choose the thing that you want to focus on and ride to victory. In Agricola, you really need a little bit of everything at the end, so you can't specialize too much in any one thing. That being said, there are multiple ways to accomplish the end goal, and which one you choose will probably be determined largely by what your cards allow you to do.

Is it cut-throat, "take that"? Well, I think it can be. It always feels like a race against the clock; you never have enough time to do everything you want to do. So, competition for certain actions and resources can be very tight. However, if you constantly choose your actions based on denying the other person what they need, you won't have time to do what you need to do for your own strategy. I think you have to find a balance between doing what's best for you and looking for key moments to block the other person.
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Mark Judd
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Wright City
Missouri
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It can be fairly satisfying to scoop up a stockpile of sheep without a cooking improvement or pastures, keeping one in your house and discarding the rest just to keep your opponent from grabbing them, filling their pastures, and cooking the rest to keep their family from starving.

I did that to my dad once - ended up forcing him to take a couple of Beggar cards for -6 VP. He was a little upset with my hit below the belt, but later admitted that he would have done the same thing if he were in my position.

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W M
United Kingdom
Rugby
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Yep, based on your criteria, Agricola would seem the game for you. We've played over 200 2-player games. and most of them were cutthroat. arrrh Depth, replayability, strategy and a certain amount of 'passive aggressive' blocking / denial, make Agricola a fine choice.

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Paul New
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2 Player Agricola has basically meant that my wife and I have ditched for the past two years other games (Carcassone, Dominion, Settlers etc etc). It is that good.

Multiple routes to victory - 10/10
Replayability - 11/10
Cut-throat factor - 9/10 *

* - Two player is the most cutthroat format of the game. But it gets even better than that. You have to be efficient in being cut-throat, you cannot just get spiteful, instead you have to ensure that your aggressive move is not over expensive in terms of an action. Yes, harm your opponent's strategy but make sure that it is not too much at the expense of your own.

From your criteria, I really thinks this game will float your boat and MORE.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Northampton
MA
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It's a great game and quite good at 2 player. After you've played the heck out of it as 2 player you should shanghai someone into playing with you as 3 player is a different beast than 2 player (as are 4 and 5 player).
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Don Strawser
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Bloomington
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As with the other comments I would agree Agricola is an excellent 2p game. The various decks give it outstanding replay value and as mentioned the two player game is very 'cutthroat' in that there are limited resources available which makes it a very challenging way to play Agricola. Highly recommended.
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chris saman
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Ottawa
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2 player is great (i've only played 2 player), but there is more blocking involved and a denial strategy really comes into play. still an awesome experience. I play with my wife and can't count how many games we've played, although i can count how many games i've won: 2.
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Matt Shields
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Portland
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Although I think the game is more "fun" with more players, Agricola is probably at it's most strategic when you play with just two. With more than two you have the normal problem of one one opponent taking moves that indirectly advantage the other opponent (like most other games), but at 2-player it's a complete zero sum game.

As long as you're using the cards it's absurdly replayable, and if you start to get bored with the cards you have there are a half dozen expansions you can throw in. Obviously the cards add a bit of luck compared to the "family version", but it's worth it for the replayability.
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Attila Kisvári
Hungary
Bokros
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For sure. Just have fun with it :)
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Paul New
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I agree with Matt Shields entirely.

I have played some 4 player and lots of 2 player. Two player is a 'purer' game for me. Less imbalances, less variables beyond your control, so more down to your reading of the game. In a 4 player, sitting too far downstream of start player can have a really tangible detriment, whereas in 2p, it is less so if you know what you are doing and manage to still get the board flowing in your direction.

The one unique element of magic within Agricola is how even when you lose, as long as you have played your own strategy well (maximised your points yield from your cards, made the most efficient moves possible) there can still be a sense of satisfaction.



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Mr. Grace
Australia
Adelaide
SA
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I often reflect that the great thing about Agricola is how it is several games in one box - child/adult, easy/complex, any number of players (1-5), with high replayability. So many choices.....
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Hank Meyer
United States
Greenbelt
Maryland
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My wife and I love 2P Agricola...we work through all the different decks, sometimes just using the 'normal' set, or experimenting...don't know why she has around a 60/40 win-loss ratio....I must be doing something wrong...our strategies vary, depending on the cards...we draft by dealing out 9, keep 6....
sometimes the denial strategy is viable, other times, we go for the touchdowns independently....always fun....hard to beat Agricola as a 2P game.
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