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Subject: what is your favourite victory condition rss

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Todd Barker
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What is your favourite victory condition, what game is it from? Do you have any stories showing why this is the best victory condition out there?
 
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Andi Hub
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I like, if the victory condition is separate from a non-trivial game end condition (by trivial I mean something like "game ends after 8 rounds"). I think Power Grid does this best, in which you (or anyone else) has to build a certain number of cities to end the game, but the winner is determined by the number of powered cities, for which you also need good power plants. The winning condition itself is also very interesting, as no matter how much money you have and how (cost-)effective you have played, you have no chance to win if your plants lack capacity.

Besides that, I tend to like racing games (who has x many "victory points" first) more than the classic "who has the most VPs after x rounds". The Great Zimbabwe has an interesting take on this, as players change their VP goal in dependence of which bonuses they choose during the game.
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Kendall McKenzie
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My favourite has to be Puzzle Strike (Third Edition), it's based off those puzzle games like Tetris and Columns, where you have to arrange gems or blocks so they disappear - each turn a gem enters your gem pile and you are out of the game if you end your turn with 10 or more, with your opponent winning. However, the main way you interact with opponents in the game is to combine and send gems to their pile, or send gems at other gems to destroy them. It's great for determining the pace of the game and lets the different characters use different methods for speeding up/slowing down the game.

The FFA mode is also very clever - it used to be last man standing, but in order to let everyone play until the end, the game ends as soon as one player is eliminated, and the person with the fewest gems in their pile is the single winner, which adds some really interesting decisions where you sometimes want to save your opponents from dying because if they're out you'll lose too.
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Brendan
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I am growing increasingly fond and appreciative of games where the first player to satisfy condition x wins (x usually being a small-ish number of VPs, a small-ish number of objectives, or even a single objective). This makes each step toward victory feel significant, and creates a more tense atmosphere in the competition for victory conditions. Examples include Catan (first to 10 VP), A Game of Thrones: The Board Game (Second Edition) (first to 7 castles/strongholds), and Dune (holding the required number of strongholds at the end of a round).

Counting up VPs is fine, but I find that I usually prefer games where scores are less than 50 so that the incremental gains of VPs still feel meaningful. This also helps with counting up VPs at the end. Ideally, players are able to influence when the game ends to still have some control over the availability of victory points. Examples include Tigris & Euphrates, Puerto Rico, and Ra.

Edit: Odd; just noticed my original post was cut off... Tried to re-write what I originally tried to post.
Edit 2: Ah... apparently I can't use the "less than" sign...
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Man thinks, the river flows.
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    Across the line first.

             S.

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Chris Morse
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Stoughton
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I can't pick a favorite, overall, because I'm attracted to variety and make it a point to play games with all kinds of end-game/victory conditions. However, I can share the one that amused me the most.

In Discworld: Ankh-Morpork each player has a hidden role, and each role has its own victory condition. Part of the game is trying to figure out what the other players are attempting to do so that you can finish your goal first. This is especially true if you draw Commander Vimes as your role, as I did in our first game.

His victory condition is simply to block everyone else from winning. If the draw pile is exhausted before any other player achieves his goal, Command Vimes is the winner. With experienced players, especially with a full board, this isn't easy to do. With four newbies, as you can guess, I enjoyed myself very much.
 
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Andrés Santiago Pérez-Bergquist
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Mountain View
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My favorite victory condition is multiple alternate victory conditions. I like games with multiple means of ending and winning the game. First off, they provide replayability by letting the game play out differently and giving you different strategies to shoot for. Additionally, when well-designed, they help to keep players involved by giving you an alternative goal to shoot for when you feel you've been shut out of achieving one way of winning.

The archetypical example of this for me is Liberté, where the default way to win the game is by accumulating points over four rounds, which is mostly easily done by supporting the centrist party. However, if you pull a Radical landslide in the election, the game ends immediately and you only count points from the Radicals, and if the Royalists occupy a majority of key provinces, the game ends immediately with a counter-revolution and you only count points from the Royalists.

There's also Chaos in the Old World, where you can gain victory points by controlling territory, but you can also win by advancing your dial by doing something thematic and specific to the god you're playing.
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Barry Harvey
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Illuminati

The Servants of Cthulhu win by destroying 8 groups (cards). Since these represent such things as Morticians, California and Convenience Stores you can actually win with the destruction of Trekkies!

'To the last, I will grapple with thee... from Hell's heart, I stab at thee! For hate's sake, I spit my last breath at thee!'
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Tom Wells

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A Study of Emerald has pretty interesting victory conditions.
 
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Bill Gallagher
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I'm surprised that the wargamers haven't chimed in on this one - I suspect they'd say:

Eliminate all other players.

There are so many victory conditions out there - in honor of tomorrow being Election Day (at least in California), I'd like to nominate "most votes wins". Die Macher, Election and Landslide all have this.

I liked the customizable victory conditions of Careers (choose your own - fortune points + happiness points + fame points = 60). That was the first time I saw a game with anything other than "most money wins", "first across the line" or "eliminate everyone else from the game" mechanics.

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Daniel Blumentritt
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I'm a wargamer who doesn't like "eliminate all other players" conditions.

I don't like victory conditions where the same thing you have to accumulate to win (VP or VP equivalent) also is the driving resource behind the rest of the game. E.g. a lot of games where you need to money to do everything, money helps you earn more money, and most money wins the game. That usually ends up too one-dimensional, and too much runaway leader potential (although I also dislike games that penalize the leader too much).

I like two step victory conditions where step 1 eliminates some players based on criteria A, and step 2 awards to the winner to the remaining player with the most of criteria B. E.g. Android: Infiltration where first you eliminate everyone who didn't make it out of the facility, and then of the remaining players, whoever stole the most data wins.
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Jonas Krainbring
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I really like Guns of Gettysburg for its control marker-based victory conditions. Hard to explain but very cool. And to do the "kill 'em all" honor: I love how King of Tokyo gives you the choice to eather win by points of by killing all other monsters. That makes for some trash talking about "wimpy winners" winning by math, very unmonsterly.

Oh, and of course War of the Ring with its combination of sudden death and sort of "silver goal" conditions is pretty neat as well.
 
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Matt Uhrich
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Wargames in Twilight Struggle.

I have a conflicted relationship with this card. I just know that one day I will be the player to draw this card, but by that time, I will probably be too old and senile to enjoy it. In the mean time, I awake it's inevitable appearance in my opponent's first action round of turn eight.
 
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Michael Carter
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The U wrote:


Wargames in Twilight Struggle.

I have a conflicted relationship with this card. I just know that one day I will be the player to draw this card, but by that time, I will probably be too old and senile to enjoy it. In the mean time, I awake it's inevitable appearance in my opponent's first action round of turn eight.


I have actually never gotten to Late War.
 
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Jeremy
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For quick games, I like the 'get to X'.

For long games, I'm a big fan of Runewars. The concept of 'Get X and then keep it while everyone tries to curb stomp you' appeals to me. Do you want to show 7 runes early in hopes of getting the win first... or wait a few seasons to better prepare? I'm a fan of that kind of strategic thinking.
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Steve B
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Either capturing all objectives, or exiting all units.

For example in Combat Commander you can win by exiting all your units off the other side of the map.

In Ardennes 44 you can win by capturing the towns as specified in the scenario.

I don't mind winning by elimination but prefer when there is an actual purpose to the fight, i.e. capturing a town or something.
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Gunky Gamer
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Gardiner
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You and me...We're in this together now...None of them can stop us now...We will make it through somehow
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Ankle deep in the blood of my enemies?
 
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Enrico Viglino
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Eugene
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I want the conditions to match the historical goals. Hence, in 18xx,
most money makes a great deal of sense, but it doesn't make sense that
someone would throw away a good money-maker just to hurt someone else. In the Lace Wars
games, aiming for prestige from battle works well. Most games don't
do a great job of capturing the actual goals of the forces that the
players seem to represent though. Eliminating all opposition is nearly
always impossible (more will come anyhow); meeting some set of point based
goals usually feels disconnected from real objectives.

I guess my favorite might be the conditions in The Republic of Rome,
wherein the players are trying to establish a long-term hold on Roman
politics. Another close one would be the national-will based surrender
rules in La Grande Guerre 14-18

I have a real penchant for secret/hidden victory conditions,
but haven't seen them handled terribly well.
 
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Nathan Clegg
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Escondido
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Most points.

I like being able to do an apples-to-apples comparison of the success of my strategy with that of the other players at the table which I find more confusing to do in games with alternative measures.
 
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O.Shane Balloun
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Bellingham
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The Bene Gesserit prediction (so called "subterfuge") win condition in Dune. If the BG predict which other house will win (1/5 chance) and on which turn (1/15 chance) for a combined probability of 1/75, the BG steal the win from the actual winner.

Last Thanksgiving I and others played Dune with a friend of mine for whom it was his first game of Dune. He understood the rules well and all of us were off to a great start. I was given the Bene Gesserit house and predicted he, who was playing Harkonnen, would win on turn 7, mostly because I know how relatively aggressively he plays. Had he had more games under his belt, I might have sugggested he would win sooner but I figured it would take a few turns extra for him to figure it out.

He took over his third stronghold alone on turn 7 and at the end, declared his victory triumphantly. I said, "Oh, but if that were true..." and showed everyone my prediction.

My brother, who was also playing, yelled out in disbelief as he pushed himself away from the table, "OH MY GOSH! THIS GAME IS BRILLIANT." My friend who won/lost also laughed and promised he would definitely play again.
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Stephen Keller
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Most money - specifically if you have to spend money to invest in things to make more money.
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Jimmy Smith
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"Omnibus Rebus Responsum"...if you have exactly 42 points at the end of the game, you win.
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Chris B
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To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.
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Joe Salamone
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I like games where you accumulate several "pools" of victory points, but only the LOWEST total counts for final scoring. A good example is Tigris & Euphrates.
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Chris in Kansai
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toddbarker wrote:
What is your favourite victory condition?


The one that I meet.
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