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Subject: Stone Upkeep? rss

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Miles Stevenson
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Arlington
Virginia
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The way stone usage is described in the rules seems to conflict with the how the iconography is described in the rules.

The rules say that when you place a worker on a building/military, that you immediately pay the cost in stone shown on the bottom the card. That's clearly stated in the rules, but what isn't stated is whether or not you also pay that amount of stone each turn during the production phase for each worker on the building. I don't think that you are supposed to pay that upkeep cost during production every round, since that seems like it would break the game. But the rules don't explicitly state either way, and the production example given in the rules is about food, not stone.

To make things more unclear, the iconography is explained such that a circle represents something gained/lost each round during the production phase multiplied by the number of workers. A square is something that is adjusted immediately. The stone costs are black circles, not squares. This would suggest that we are supposed to lose X number of stone every production phase for each worker on the building. This doesn't make sense to me because the quarry and the farm buildings would never net you a gain in stone and you would quickly find yourself unable to place workers after the first round. So this can't be true, else the game wouldn't work.

Why is the cost shown as a circle instead of a square? I understand that when a square is shown, a resource is adjusted up or down when something on that building changes. The designer has intended for you to pay a one-time cost in stone when initially placing a worker on a building, but not for you to get that stone back when you recall a worker. I get that. I still don't get why the icon is shown as a circle instead of something else. If anything, it should either have a different background shape like a triangle or something, or no shape at all. Using a circle just confuses people into thinking it might be an ongoing cost.

Thanks.
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Simon Kamber
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warfinger wrote:
The way stone usage is described in the rules seems to conflict with the how the iconography is described in the rules.

The rules say that when you place a worker on a building/military, that you immediately pay the cost in stone shown on the bottom the card. That's clearly stated in the rules, but what isn't stated is whether or not you also pay that amount of stone each turn during the production phase for each worker on the building. I don't think that you are supposed to pay that upkeep cost during production every round, since that seems like it would break the game. But the rules don't explicitly state either way, and the production example given in the rules is about food, not stone.

To make things more unclear, the iconography is explained such that a circle represents something gained/lost each round during the production phase multiplied by the number of workers. A square is something that is adjusted immediately. The stone costs are black circles, not squares. This would suggest that we are supposed to lose X number of stone every production phase for each worker on the building. This doesn't make sense to me because the quarry and the farm buildings would never net you a gain in stone and you would quickly find yourself unable to place workers after the first round. So this can't be true, else the game wouldn't work.

Why is the cost shown as a circle instead of a square? I understand that when a square is shown, a resource is adjusted up or down when something on that building changes. The designer has intended for you to pay a one-time cost in stone when initially placing a worker on a building, but not for you to get that stone back when you recall a worker. I get that. I still don't get why the icon is shown as a circle instead of something else. If anything, it should either have a different background shape like a triangle or something, or no shape at all. Using a circle just confuses people into thinking it might be an ongoing cost.

Thanks.


The cost at the bottom of the card should have been neither a circle (production) nor a square (status). It should simply have been -1 stone.

Ignore the cost at the bottom of the building/military cards during production.
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Jack Francisco
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Only the BIG circles are dealt with during Production. To be honest, I never really thought about the little circles as I thought the rulebook was pretty clear on this. Let me also add that the FAQ (and support) for this game by Rustan has been top-notch!
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Viktor Karlsson Mantel
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Take military for example. Here is from rulebook page 15:
"Each Worker deployed on the
Military immediately increases the Military Strength by the
amount stated on the top of the card. If the Military has an
upkeep cost, adjust it immediately (Stability) or pay it during
the Resolution Phase (resources)."
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You can't handle the truth?
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It's a deploy cost. You pay it only when you deploy. Only the numbers are the top are the effects.
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Simon Kamber
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senorcoo wrote:
Only the BIG circles are dealt with during Production. To be honest, I never really thought about the little circles as I thought the rulebook was pretty clear on this. Let me also add that the FAQ (and support) for this game by Rustan has been top-notch!


I never even noticed that they were circles, until someone in my group got very confused because I had told them to count all the circles.

It is not ambiguous once you know the rules, but it does confuse some people(like the OP)
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Miles Stevenson
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Thanks everyone. My opinion is still that the iconography is confusing and should be changed. A lot of people tend to parse rules quite literally, myself included. While one diagram may point to a card and say "deploy cost", another rule says that circles are paid during the production phase. Note: the rules don't say "some circles", or "circles on the top of the card", or "all circles except the deploy cost", etc. The rules just say "circles." Therefore, a literal interpretation of the rules results in ambiguity in this regard.

I like the game. I'm just making suggestions to help make the game clearer to English speaking audiences. And I know, many of you who are fluent in English were never confused about this topic, so you might be tempted to reply and state "I was never confused, therefore the iconography/rules are fine", but please realize that people are different and there might be a lot of folks out there who have had a different experience than you. If the people who are confused never speak up about it, nobody knows how many people are confused and/or playing the game wrong.

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Jack Francisco
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warfinger wrote:
Thanks everyone. My opinion is still that the iconography is confusing and should be changed. A lot of people tend to parse rules quite literally, myself included. While one diagram may point to a card and say "deploy cost", another rule says that circles are paid during the production phase. Note: the rules don't say "some circles", or "circles on the top of the card", or "all circles except the deploy cost", etc. The rules just say "circles." Therefore, a literal interpretation of the rules results in ambiguity in this regard.

I like the game. I'm just making suggestions to help make the game clearer to English speaking audiences. And I know, many of you who are fluent in English were never confused about this topic, so you might be tempted to reply and state "I was never confused, therefore the iconography/rules are fine", but please realize that people are different and there might be a lot of folks out there who have had a different experience than you. If the people who are confused never speak up about it, nobody knows how many people are confused and/or playing the game wrong.



They could just make it a diamond shape.
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Mike Stevens
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warfinger wrote:
Thanks everyone. My opinion is still that the iconography is confusing and should be changed. A lot of people tend to parse rules quite literally, myself included. While one diagram may point to a card and say "deploy cost", another rule says that circles are paid during the production phase. Note: the rules don't say "some circles", or "circles on the top of the card", or "all circles except the deploy cost", etc. The rules just say "circles." Therefore, a literal interpretation of the rules results in ambiguity in this regard.

I like the game. I'm just making suggestions to help make the game clearer to English speaking audiences. And I know, many of you who are fluent in English were never confused about this topic, so you might be tempted to reply and state "I was never confused, therefore the iconography/rules are fine", but please realize that people are different and there might be a lot of folks out there who have had a different experience than you. If the people who are confused never speak up about it, nobody knows how many people are confused and/or playing the game wrong.


Miles, while myself and the group I play with never had any issues with understanding the Deploy cost of workers on cards, you do make a valid point that the word circles is mentioned in the rules as being paid during the production phase so I totally see where you are coming from.

Now that you know the costs on the bottom are to deploy workers on those cards, just let your group and any new players know that when you are going over the game rules and mechanics. I also think a different symbol could have been used just to avoid any questions.

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Rustan Håkansson
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warfinger wrote:
A lot of people tend to parse rules quite literally, myself included. While one diagram may point to a card and say "deploy cost", another rule says that circles are paid during the production phase. Note: the rules don't say "some circles", or "circles on the top of the card", or "all circles except the deploy cost", etc. The rules just say "circles." Therefore, a literal interpretation of the rules results in ambiguity in this regard.


Thanks, noted.
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Mike Romeo
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If it was a square, then it would mean that when you remove the worker from the card you get your stone back.
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