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Subject: Incentivizing Playing for Position for Players that Play for the Win rss

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While discussing how to incentivize playing for 2nd place* in Race-like games, Rainstar came up with this rough idea: starting from last, each position behind first gets "look +1" (additional) for your opening hand of the next game.

E.g.:
Player A: 40 (1st)
Player B: 30 (2nd)
Player C: 20 (3rd)
Player D: 10 (4th)

Game 2:
Player A start hand: 6 keep 4
Player B start hand: 9 keep 4
Player C start hand: 8 keep 4
Player D start hand: 7 keep 4

Thoughts?

Pros:
* Gives a little extra incentive to the newer or worse players to play again.

Cons:
* May corrupt how the mid-late game is played. E.g.: non-leading players may not take positive expectation high-variance risks to protect the paltry next-game reward.


* Some personality types (such as myself), play exclusively for first place. This works just great, except when a player gets an insurmountable lead. These players need a reason to keep trying to play their best (for 2nd place, essentially).
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rain
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
entranced wrote:

Player A: 40 (1st)
Player B: 30 (2nd)
Player C: 20 (3rd)
Player D: 10 (4th)

Game 2:
Player A start hand: 6 keep 4
Player B start hand: 9 7 keep 4
Player C start hand: 8 keep 4
Player D start hand: 7 9 keep 4
 
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John
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
I would normally play for 2nd place (but maybe without quite so much motivation as when I thought I could win). For most people the problem is when your not even playing for second, but trying to avoid coming last.

For playing a few games in a row with the same group including people with those personality types this sounds like a reasonable variant. It's a bit like those climbing games where the winner & second place get to improve their hand and the expense of 3rd & 4th (Twos was the game we played). It was quite fun to try to work you way up from last place, knowing that you had a disadvantage each time, and certainly make playing for 2nd & 3rd place more exciting. This is no where near as big an advantage though.

Pros:
*Everyone would actually work out their scores. I've played games where people haven't bothered counting as they know they're lost. I think it's useful to work out your score when you're new to the game, and I find it a bit of an anticlimax when people aren't bother how they scored.

Other concerns (applying to entranced's numbers):
* Would it make it difficult to win twice in a row (some might consider this an advantage, but it's no fun playing again if 2nd place gets to build a ridiculously strong hand out of their 9 cards)
* If the new player finished last then they're at a disadvantage against everyone other than 1st place, it doesn't seem great giving a new player a disadvantage.
*It might slow down the start of the game a bit with newish players - more options, so more potential for AP.

Rainstar's suggestion would provide an incentive coming last if you knew you couldn't win. It'd help whoever lost, but pretty weird to have an incentive to come last (though trying to avoid 2nd place could provide an interesting mechanic in a game designed to be played over multiple rounds)
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Christopher B
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
Rainstar wrote:
entranced wrote:

Player A: 40 (1st)
Player B: 30 (2nd)
Player C: 20 (3rd)
Player D: 10 (4th)

Game 2:
Player A start hand: 6 keep 4
Player B start hand: 9 7 keep 4
Player C start hand: 8 keep 4
Player D start hand: 7 9 keep 4


This would result in the opposite of what he wants.
That would not give incentive to battle for second place... it would increase the incentive to NOT battle for second place.
Even worse. It would give incentive to try to get the last place if you aren't able to win anymore.

But it is interesting non the less.
Just wanted to point out that that is not really what entrances wanted to achive.
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Michael Grankin
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
Just add all players' scores to a table and then at the end of the night announce totals. Whoever has the most points overall is declared Lord of the Galaxy
Spoiler (click to reveal)
and buys beer.
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Tomas Hejna
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
entranced wrote:
Game 2:
Player A start hand: 6 keep 4
Player B start hand: 9 8 keep 4
Player C start hand: 8 6 keep 4
Player D start hand: 7 6 keep 4

I would rather try something like this...
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
XehutL wrote:
I would rather try something like this...

I probably should have titled it "Incentivizing Playing for Position for Players that Play for the Win"

I do think this would be better than my OP though:

A/1st: 6 keep 4
B/2nd: 8 keep 4
C/3rd: 7 keep 4
D/4th: 6 keep 4

What about 5 & 6 player games? Same pattern?

6 keep 4
10 keep 4
9 keep 4
8 keep 4
7 keep 4
6 keep 4

 
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John
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
entranced wrote:

I probably should have titled it "Incentivizing Playing for Position for Players that Play for the Win"

Are there many games when you know you are going to finish 3rd or lower during the game?
 
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
zabdiel wrote:
Are there many games when you know you are going to finish 3rd or lower during the game?

No, but i don't think that's relevant. Dunno how else to say it. :P
 
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Jeffrey
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
Not that I see this as a problem that needs to be solved, but if I were trying to solve it, I think I'd assign points to each position and tally up those points at the end of the night. Something like you get 1 point for each person you beat, and the winner gets an extra point.
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David
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
LocutusZero wrote:
Not that I see this as a problem that needs to be solved, but if I were trying to solve it, I think I'd assign points to each position and tally up those points at the end of the night. Something like you get 1 point for each person you beat, and the winner gets an extra point.

That is what a lot of the tournaments I play in do (not RFTG, mostly Yucata games).
 
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
LocutusZero wrote:
I think I'd assign points to each position and tally up those points at the end of the night. Something like you get 1 point for each person you beat, and the winner gets an extra point.


This is a common solution in traditional card games, but the problem that we have is that it is often not the same players playing Race for each session. People show up late, people leave early, people want to play other games. That flexibility is one of the great things about short games like Race, and I don't think we'd want to compromise that.

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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
I've thought about this a fair amount, and I've come up with a (hopefully) super simple rating system for Race. I thought it should go in its own thread, so it can be found here: Super simple rating system for Race for the Galaxy
 
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
I don't like the idea of aiming for second place (IMO players should try to close the gap with the leader as much as possible), or of letting the results of one game change the rules of the next.
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Re: Incentivizing Playing for Second Place for Players that Play for the Win
entranced wrote:
zabdiel wrote:
Are there many games when you know you are going to finish 3rd or lower during the game?

No, but i don't think that's relevant. Dunno how else to say it. :P


I've no problem if you don't think it's relevant! My thought was that if you're very rarely in a position where you know you can't get 1st or 2nd place then a incentive for finishing 2nd might be enough. Though it would seem a little weird to give only 2nd place an extra card.
 
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zabdiel wrote:
My thought was that if you're very rarely in a position where you know you can't get 1st or 2nd place then a incentive for finishing 2nd might be enough. Though it would seem a little weird to give only 2nd place an extra card.

Yeah, my goal here was to come up with a system that applies to everyone that plays for the win, regardless of skill level, not just my particular case. Not that i'm any good. Every time i play the only good player in my play group (Rainstar), i feel like a terrible player. :P
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