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Subject: Hive: King Of Wasps rss

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Stephen Taylor
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Manchester
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In addition to Hive: Swarm you can also play the stand alone game King of Wasps which only requires the Swarm pieces.



The rules are exactly the same as the original Hive only the Wasp King is the piece required to be surrounded instead of the Queen Bee. So similarly you must place your Wasp King on your fourth turn if you haven't done so already. There is also an additional victory condition. You can also win immediately by using either your Mantis or Assassin Bug to remove your opponent's Wasp from the Hive.

Additionally, the Wasp King is unable to sting as it can when used in Hive: Swarm.

Bugs required:

Wasp King, Earthworm, Earwig, Tick, Shield Bug, Assassin Bug, Mantis
Dragonfly, Centipede, Moth, Scorpion, Cockroach, Butterfly

See http://boardgamegeek.com/filepage/95016/hive-swarm for further details on the pieces. I will update this doc with King Of Wasps soon.



A few quick tactics:

You have to watch out for the slow build up of a surrounding victory, whilst remaining vigilant for the quick tactical attack to remove the Wasp in one fell swoop. This can give the player in the losing position the hope to steal a victory against the tide of play.

Although the Wasp can escape itself from being surrounded once no longer connecting the Hive, this is balanced by there being many more pieces which can be used to try and pin the Wasp to prevent it from escaping. Furthermore you can also use the Mantis or Assassin Bug to remove the Wasp for the win, providing multiple strategies.

There are also many pieces which can be used to help free your pinned Wasp, so there are many interesting battles to be had.

The Earth Worm can be used to great effect to swap the Wasp into a position ready to be attacked by a Mantis or Assassin Bug as the Wasp can't then move for a turn. However they are equally good defensive opportunities as the Mantis and Assassin bug can both be either pinned from above or a ground pin created so that removing the Wasp would break the one Hive rule. Both of these approaches might be possible and can prevent them from attacking the Wasp so long as you have the right piece to spare that is.

The Worm could also be next to the opponents Wasp then swap with the mantis so it is ready to attack on the next turn. The Mantis can't then be moved as it was moved on the previous turn so if there is no piece to defend, the game could be lost on the next turn if the Wasp is trapped by the Mantis alone by the one Hive rule.

The paralyzing Scorpion can be especially useful to prevent the Wasp from escaping before the final piece is moved in to surround it.

The Tick can be used to send an escaping Wasp back into the almost surrounded hole whence it came, once one turn has elapsed of course. Once moved back it can't itself move immediately allowing you to fill the remaining space for victory. You could also use the Mantis, Assassin Bug or Tick to guard the Wasp's escape routes.

I think Hive: Swarm works well as a full expansion sold as one package. It has a nice symmetry with the number of pieces in the Original Hive + expansions (28 each). It combines with the Original Hive to create the Swarm game which presents lots of new game play possibilities, yet can also function as a game in its own right with King of Wasps. I think King of Wasps also brings something fresh to table, you could even flip things around and add some of the original pieces to this game as expansions.

Notes: I decided that since the Wasp was to be a King Wasp for the purposes of “King Of Wasps” (males cannot sting in reality, usually it's a female in Hive: Swarm) and it was to be the target to be surrounded then it would be better not to have the stinging ability. What do you thing?

Once I get chance I'll do some more analysis on all this hopefully with diagrams. I've not had chance to thoroughly think through all aspects of this yet so if you spot any obviously caveats please let me know.

Cheers,
Ste.
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