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Subject: How confrontational is City of Iron? rss

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Jonathan Franklin
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Ryan's other games have area control and direct conflict.

I've read about City of Iron and the ability to conquer neutral towns or take those towns after another player has already conquered them.

How confrontational does the game feel? Is the result of combat that your cube goes up one and mine goes down one, or can it swing the game, leaving someone feeling bitter or frustrated?

Thanks for any thoughts.
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Geki
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grandslam wrote:
Ryan's other games have area control and direct conflict.

I've read about City of Iron and the ability to conquer neutral towns or take those towns after another player has already conquered them.

How confrontational does the game feel? Is the result of combat that your cube goes up one and mine goes down one, or can it swing the game, leaving someone feeling bitter or frustrated?

Thanks for any thoughts.


You are going to get mixed opinions on this, but I'll try to give you mine (by the way, check out my review which is going up tonight I address the matter of military ops specifically).

The way combat work is that you use a certain amount of cards (i.e. resources/actions, since they can be generated by your engine or drawn with an action) and an action to take a city, which usually provides you with 2 of a given "good". When you take it from someone else, thus, they lose two on the track and you move upwards 2.

It could become "swingy" if they were able to do it consistently every round but
a) this is very hard to do: the cards you use are discarded and unless they really focus everything they've got on military, it will take a few turns to build their hand back up.
b) No matter how strong their military is, this has no influence on what you can take from them. So even if they have twice the military you have, you can choose to take back what is needed when is needed, since defence is a fixed value of the city and not a player variant.
c) getting a city from a player is considerable more expensive (in military terms) than taking it from the "unconquered" ones. Therefore, in a 3 or 4 players game, it can become less convenient on the long run.

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Geki
 
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J Mason
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Bidding for turn order can really get important here. If you are the last to go and can steal a city from another player right before the scoring round it is very effective. I have especially noticed this in a 2-player game.I don't think it leaves you bitter and frustrated, this is just one more strategy you have to be aware of and defend against or exploit. There are cards in the deck that allow you to defend your cities more effectively and this can minimize your risk of someone stealing your city
 
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Richard Pickman
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Also, if you are only concerned about players stealing cities from each other, you can just play without that rule. I.e., that once a city has been conquered by one player, it cannot be re-conquered by another player.

(Of course, the game also includes more indirect types of confrontation, such as snagging a building card you know your opponent wants, but without maneuvers like that, the game probably wouldn't be ver interesting.)
 
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Marius van der Merwe
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I would say City of Iron is highly confrontational, but not so much because of towns changing ownership (this happens relatively rarely). Most confrontation comes in the indirect form of denying your opponents cards that they desperately need for whatever main strategy they are trying to develop. This is also why the card storing mechanic is such an important one. This is not a game where you can expect to do well if you ignore what your opponents are trying to do.
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