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Subject: not recommended for 2P - why not? rss

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i noticed that nearly 30% of users, do not recommend this game to be played with only 2 players. why is that?
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Shane Larsen
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Re: not recommended for 2P
It would be interesting to know how many of those 30% actually played it with 2.
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Jonathan Harrison
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Re: not recommended for 2P
I have played with 2 and with 3 and did not find 2-player lacking.
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Ben Boersma
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Re: not recommended for 2P
We enjoyed playing it 2 player. Was a nice way to learn the game actually.
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Karel Stastny
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Re: not recommended for 2P
We played 2P and 4P so far and we enjoyed both of the games, I do not think that 2P was any worse.
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Alex Martinez
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Re: not recommended for 2P
Two player is perfectly fine experience. About half of my games have been with two players, and it works very well, especially since the map's size is customized to the number of players.
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Carthoris Pyramidos
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Re: not recommended for 2P
I like Kemet with 2. I like it even better with more.
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Alexei S.
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Six people apparently voted to "not recommend" this game for two-player in the front-page poll. There are now seven players in this thread (myself included) who disagree with them.

Edit: One may consider this a lesson in checking the reliability of statistics.
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Steve W
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I've only played it with 2 and I think it's a fun game in that way. That said I suspect there is a bit of a skew in the value of power tiles depending on the number of players.

Some tiles with multiple copies are less valuable to grab in 2-player since you can get them any time. I feel like Blue defensive powers are also weaker in 2-player. In 2-player, when you buy Blue defensive power you're making yourself harder to attack. But since you're the only possible target you're still going to get attacked. With more than 2 players getting defensive powers makes you a harder target and also likely to get attacked in the first place, so it's a comparatively stronger move. There's other examples where I think the value of the tiles will vary depending on the number of players.

That said I've only played it 2-player and it's been a fun game every time, so I would recommend it for two.
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A. Ferris
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I'll be the outlier here. I don't recommend Kemet for two-player.

I have played it two-player, and while I enjoyed the game, I also have the (unique?) ability to enjoy games despite lack of balance. For example, in games where players have starting skills, etc., I tend to choose the most disadvantaged just for the fund of it.

Back on topic, I agree with the poll in that a two-player game tends to suffer the irreparable skyrocket effect. Once one of the players is doing better, the other player just won't catch up. Well, I should say that the other player may and likely will catch up in terms of potency, but by then it will likely be much to late to win the game.

The rest of this is just an explanation as to why I feel this way. It's a bit excessive, so feel free to skip it unless you want my reasoning.

Just some game basics first, and then I'll get into how this plays out in a two-player game:

The power colors — red, blue, and white — have an order of importance. Red is the most important, followed very closely by blue, followed at a distance by white. The reason for this hierarchy is very simply that white grants you resources, but red and blue allow you to, respectively, take and keep temples on the board, which give you not just resources, but also temporary and permanent victory points.

More specifically, red allows you to attack other players with more potency. This is vital for two reasons: (1) it allows you to take and retake temples with ease, and (2) getting red powers prevents your opponent from taking and retaking temples with ease. The "weakness" compared to blue is that you can't hold the temples very well, but the reason I use those sarcastic quotations is that you actually want the temple to be taken from you because it gives you an opportunity to attack and retake it and get a permanent victory point for winning the battle.

On top of this, red has a fourth-tier skill that kills off two units before a battle even starts. This is arguably one of the strongest skills in the game.

Blue, is secondary. It allows you to keep the temple once you have it. But if you are going to try squatting on the temples, there are two problems.

Firstly, blue has very few skills, particularly earlier in the game, that facilitate you taking the temple in the first place. Really, you have three powers that facilitate taking things: the power that lets you get five DI cards and select the best one to keep, the power that allows you to have seven units to a troop, and the sphinx creature. There are four other powers that "help" in taking a temple: two free units with each recruitment, four free units at night, the snake creature, and if you have the aforementioned DI card power, the power that grants you a second DI card. However, none of these four grant you an sizeable advantage on their own, which is to say that the effects of these two recruitment powers are largely compensated for simply by being able to take a temple, get the resources and spend them on recruitment; the effects of the snake only serve to nullify an opponents creature, not actually grant you an advantage; and getting an extra random DI card is usually not that helpful.

Secondly, if you are going to go the squatter root, you have to get the "victory point on winning a defensive battle" power, of which there is only one in the game. If you fail to get this, then the second player has a victory-point advantage every time they attack you.

White comes in last. For the most part, white is all about getting free resources or avoiding spending resources. However, it doesn't give you a way to get victory points on the board. The primary advantage of its one creature, the mummy priest, in comparison to the other creatures is that you get an extra DI cards, but due to the size and randomness of the DI deck, you can't count on this to do much unless you have the blue power mentioned above.

So all that said, in a two-player game, the player who can get down the red track the fastest tends to skyrocket to victory. Compared to a multiplayer game, where you will have multiple people going after red track cards and/or preventing the red player from occupying the temples at the end of turn, in a two-player game, the player who gets certain key red cards is going to have an extreme advantage in that s/he can attack and reattack temples, getting victory points for winning the attack and holding the temple(s) and getting resources to continue recruiting, improving temples, and getting powers.

Whereas multiplayer games would likely prevent you from keeping two temples for two turns and decimate your units enough that you can't win three battles due to recruitment costs, in my experience, two-player games allow whoever gets to second-tier red first to go from about 2-3 victory points to 7-8 victory points in 2 turns, considering you go from holding one temple to holding two temples for one extra temporary VP and two extra permanent VP, raise your pyramid from 2-4, and win two or three battles.

This isn't the case for every two-player game I've played, but it is usually the case for two-player games with equally experienced/skilled players.
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Steve W
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J3d0uardP3rn07 wrote:
Firstly, blue has very few skills, particularly earlier in the game, that facilitate you taking the temple in the first place. Really, you have three powers that facilitate taking things: the power that lets you get five DI cards and select the best one to keep, the power that allows you to have seven units to a troop, and the sphinx creature.


I'd actually argue that Blue's Ancestral Elephant is one of the stronger early temple-taking powers. For 2 PP you get a bonus to strength and you get an extra protection which will help you hold onto the temple. Its problem is that it's outclassed by Tier 3 and 4 creatures, but early game it's a pretty effective move, IMO.
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A. Ferris
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MrThud wrote:
J3d0uardP3rn07 wrote:
Firstly, blue has very few skills, particularly earlier in the game, that facilitate you taking the temple in the first place. Really, you have three powers that facilitate taking things: the power that lets you get five DI cards and select the best one to keep, the power that allows you to have seven units to a troop, and the sphinx creature.


I'd actually argue that Blue's Ancestral Elephant is one of the stronger early temple-taking powers. For 2 PP you get a bonus to strength and you get an extra protection which will help you hold onto the temple. Its problem is that it's outclassed by Tier 3 and 4 creatures, but early game it's a pretty effective move, IMO.


I can see that. I've personally never done it, and even in a three or four-player, I have only seen someone go after the Elephant once they realize they can't get to the red tier-3 and 4 creatures and skills in time and other blue powers and creatures like legion and snake are gone.
 
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Tim Courtney
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J3d0uardP3rn07 wrote:
Firstly, blue has very few skills, particularly earlier in the game, that facilitate you taking the temple in the first place. Really, you have three powers that facilitate taking things: the power that lets you get five DI cards and select the best one to keep, the power that allows you to have seven units to a troop, and the sphinx creature. There are four other powers that "help" in taking a temple: two free units with each recruitment, four free units at night, the snake creature, and if you have the aforementioned DI card power, the power that grants you a second DI card.


These are both white, not blue.
 
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A. Ferris
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RichardMNixon wrote:
J3d0uardP3rn07 wrote:
Firstly, blue has very few skills, particularly earlier in the game, that facilitate you taking the temple in the first place. Really, you have three powers that facilitate taking things: the power that lets you get five DI cards and select the best one to keep, the power that allows you to have seven units to a troop, and the sphinx creature. There are four other powers that "help" in taking a temple: two free units with each recruitment, four free units at night, the snake creature, and if you have the aforementioned DI card power, the power that grants you a second DI card.


These are both white, not blue.


Sorry about that. I'd originally written a list of all powers that help you take temples, and then messed up when I separated by colors. The part about DI card should fall under white.
 
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Alejandro Magno
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I don't agree with ferris assessment of 2 player game. Should both player fight for red? Definitely. Red has the best tiles of the game, and in 2 player game where there are so little player for so much red tiles, yes, both players should go sooner or later to red 4.
That is true in other number of players. If the complain is "red is not balanced" that is true Red>White>Blue (in regards to power) in all number of players. I wish it weren't so but it is.
But this is tangential and this is not a 2 player specific problem.
Worse case scenario, both players have to rush a level 4 red, and we are going to draft the red tiles, You get scarabab, I get initiative, you get Scorpion, I get divine wound, and who knows how it follows.
Specially knowing that we trade picking positions.

The most interesting part is that I can see some non pure red strats beating a pure red strat.
I don't know ferris plan to play his red strat. But I can see countering most pure red strats.

Having said this i don't state 2 player game to be interesting. I think the low amount of di cards and how deterministic combat is, may make kemet a little to shallow to be interesting in two player games. I don't know.
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