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Subject: Game Etiquette for Best Experience? rss

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Rahn
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In our game group we play with the following set of etiquette:
The move you make should look to increase your relative position/placing. I.e. if you are in fourth place, instead of tanking the game and causing chaos for other players because you can't win or retaliating against the guy who put you in fourth place, you instead look for a move that will put you in third place.

We've found this has led to less kingmaking and a more satisfying play experience for all players in almost any game we play.

Does this style of play work best with this game? Or is retaliation a big part of the game? And do you have to be careful who you betray because of it? Has anyone tried playing in both free for all with retaliation and with a more structured etiquette?
 
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Rahn
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You misunderstood my post.

We love backstabbing games. I applaud a move that I did not see that betrays me and absolutely devastates me. Most of the games we play are economic with emergent alliances (temporary and shifting player alignments). One of the favourites in our group is Chicago Express. Every move you make has a huge impact on the board and some moves can savage multiple players.

We've found that these games work better when you play with the etiquette I outlined above. I introduced this etiquette to one of the new players in his group and he came back to me a few weeks later and said "this has changed the way I view and play every game for the better".

Generic example of play. Player A performs a move that changes player ranking from A2, B1, C3, D4 to A1, B4, C2, D3. That move is applauded by the table including by player B who got royally screwed. Now B has two options, he's out of the game and can cause chaos or specifically aim for revenge against player A who caused him this loss. Or he can play competitively where he still tries to do the best that he can and tries to secure a higher final position by making moves trying to overcome player D for 3rd place. We find that this etiquette works brilliantly in economic games with room for manipulation and backstabbing.

I was wondering if anyone has tried to play Lifeboats in this way.
We are definitely going to try playing it in both fashions. Each way has very distinctly different dynamics. In the free for all version your moves have to account for player emotions and anger based reactions. In the etiquette way you have the ability for more strategic optimisation (which some groups may not like) where you can throw another player overboard this turn but know he will still vote with you next round in another boat because that is his best chance to score points.
 
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Daniel Corban
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A major part of this game is getting yourself ahead without angering other players. It's a social game, much like the Survivor TV show. You can be as strategic as you like, but when you get near the end, if you didn't play the social game and have angered others, you will not win.
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Rahn
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I got the game to the table this week.

The ability to jump boats at the end of the round does take away from the ability to make long term strategic decisions. However it does insert some rich tactical ones. Also drowning a player in this phase is always satisfying.

I had the opportunity to get an early lead in the game. I decided to take that before these boats were targeted by other players. This was a type of game I knew I didn't want to be in the lead early for as I soon became the target. After I was down to 2 sailors left in boats I was able to persuade the table that I was not the major threat. There was a guy who had not scored but still had 6 of his 7 sailors in boats. With this switch to highest "potential" score on the table vs "current" score I was able to distract them just enough to get 1 of my last 2 pawns across for the win.

We played with 5 and I'm looking forward to playing with 6. There were too many times where the vote for the leak was decided in above board negotiations with no back stabbing by a majority 3-2 vote. I think the ability for tied votes in a 6p game would really make that interesting.
 
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