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Subject: Two-Player New England rss

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Corey Butler
United States
Marshall
Minnesota
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My wife and I did a couple of play-tests of Two-Player New England last night, and it went really well. On the assumption that the four-player game is optimal, we cut the playing space in half by keeping the board folded halfway, with the side showing the ten coin spaces on top. Instead of turning over 3 cards, 3 tiles and 3 cards/tiles, we went with the rule of 2 cards, 2 tiles and 1 card/tile. This worked well and helped to keep the auction competitive. Finally, we reduced the 1-10 auction coins to 2-8. This was somewhat arbitrary, but it makes the money a little tighter and there is no need for such a large range with only two players.

As for the supply of cards and tiles, we tried two different versions. In the first game, we used the full number of both. This resulted in a relatively long game in which almost all of the tile spaces on the board were filled up. In this game, it was important to think strategically and optimize board space. In the second game, we used half of the tiles and half of the cards, carefully selected to evenly divide types of resources (e.g. 2 of the 4 ten-point brown cards were included). This resulted in a very fast playing, highly tactical game in which we had to score points as quickly as possible. It was surprising how different the game felt with these two different approaches. Maybe including 3/4 of the tiles and cards would be best, and the reader is encouraged to experiment for him or herself.

Two-Player New England lacks some of the tension you get when playing with four players, particularly in the auction phase, but it works surprisingly well, possibly better than with three players. Compared to many other games, it's also rather nonconfrontational, so it's a nice game for couples to play together in the evening.
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fer moros
South Korea
Kwang-Ju
Gwangju
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We always play 3 or 4, but many times wonder if it would be playable for 2. Of course the tension of bidding is not the same.. but for the rest we could not think in anything that would not work.

Las night there was a new player, and while waiting for the third, I show her how the game worked. We started a 2player game with the only aim being the new player to learn the game, and i realised that you can perfectly play it for two.

Your variants will help.

Nice game
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El-ad David Amir
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New York
New York
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Perhaps hide the choices made in the shillings auction? Each player chooses a number secretly and they are revealed simultaneously. The tie breaker can be the starting player marker.
 
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Sat Elg
United States
Vast
Ohio
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In a three player game if you remove the back two rows you end up with 25.67 squares per player vs 24.75 in a 4 player game
 
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Rik Van Horn
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Livonia
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This is a game that would strike me as losing a lot of what makes it worthwhile scaling it down to two players.
There are SO many excellent games designed for two players, I'm always reluctant to mess around with games obviously aimed at multiplayers.
I suppose if the games you have available to you are limited, it might be worth trying though.

 
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