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Subject: Does this play with 5? rss

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Jim Marshall
United Kingdom
York
North Yorkshire
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The player count for Biblios is listed at 2-4, but looking at reviews it's not limited by component sets (i.e. it doesn't come with 4 sets of pieces or similar).

Has anyone tried playing with 5? I'll be going on a cycle tour with 4 friends in September and I usually take a couple of light (in both senses of the word) games to play over a drink in the evening. This looks like it would go down well, but there will be 5 of us - would it work?
 
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Ben O'Steen
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It might work, but with just one set, each player would get much fewer rounds. There aren't enough cards for a satisfactory amount of play IMO.

For example, there are 87 cards in the pack and you'd need to discard cards from this to make sure there is the right amount for everyone to have equal turns. During the donation stage, a turn would use up 6 cards - one for auction, one for self, and 4 for the other players and complete round would use up 30 cards - not a great number to fit in 87. Three cards short of having enough for every player to take 3 turns during the donation phase. In a four player match, everyone gets 4 turns. (20 cards a round, 80 in deck)

So, it will play, but you'd be discarding 27 cards and playing 2 turns each before the auction phase.

Then there is the issue of downtime between turns. It's likely to be high with 5 players. I don't think the game would be a good fit!
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Pee di Moor
Netherlands
Rotterdam
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I really enjoy Biblios as a 2- or 3-payer game.

With 4 it becomes too chaotic and it takes away the influence players have; i.e. I thubk it becomes a luck of the draw game at 4.

Therefore I would not even think of trying it with 5 ....
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Neil Christiansen
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Mount Pleasant
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We have used the rules below, endorsed (created?) by the designer. After playing twice with the suggested distribution of money, we reverted to distributing them as normal. I now carry a set of smaller white dice in my main copy all of the time.

5-Player Biblios

Set-Up
Give each player the following Gold cards: 1, 1, 2, 2, and 3.
Discard 2 random cards from the deck.

The deck now has 60 cards, enough for each player to have 2 turns as the active player.

Additional Rules

Obtain 5 additional dice, i.e. white with black pips. Place one die next to each colored die in the category spaces. Set these dice to 1 at the start of the game.

These new dice will award points to the player who achieves 2nd place in each category.

Whenever a player uses the power of a Church card, they get an additional ability to change a white die in the same manner.

This new power is in addition to the Church card's stated power. This additional power does not need to be used; it is up to the player. Of course, a player may choose not to use a Church card at all, per the normal rules.

Just like the original Church cards, the player may choose to alter the white dice in whatever category they see fit. For example, if a player were to play the Church card with 2 +1 dice, the player will change two different color dice as normal, and then may alter two different white dice in any category they wish.

Finally, players may alter colored or white dice in any order they wish.

Players may not turn the white dice to a value higher than the associated colored die. Likewise, players may not turn a color die lower than the associated white die.

Remember, players may alter the colored or white dice in any order they wish.

The player who achieves 2nd place in each category wins the number of points shown on the white die. If the white die is at the same value as the associated colored die, then the value of the white die must be lowered by 1, but the white die cannot go below 1 point.
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