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Subject: Play with 6, 7, or 8? rss

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Kirk Bauer
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Normally I just play with 5 people (base game plus Pegasus/Cylon Fleet board plus Treachery cards off the top of my head). But this time around it looks like I may have 6-8. I have all of the expansions available to me. How will this impact play time? Is there any number I should avoid? Any suggestions on the best setup for each of those numbers of players?
 
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Joel Carson
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5-7 are all fun from my experience. But in general more people means a slower game, unless they are veterans to the game.

If you are going for an 8 player game, just note the game is not naturally built for that. As a quick fix I'd suggest playing with two cylon leaders for that. Their different agendas will most likely balance each other out, and CL play faster than a human or regular cylon so they won't add as much time.
 
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kirkbauer wrote:
Normally I just play with 5 people (base game plus Pegasus/Cylon Fleet board plus Treachery cards off the top of my head). But this time around it looks like I may have 6-8. I have all of the expansions available to me. How will this impact play time?

TBH, the bigger factor is how far the jumps go (3-3-2 vs. many 1 and 2 distance Dcards), and if there's going to be a plethora or dearth of jump icons, and anything in between. I've had one 3p game take longer then several 7p games because of these factors. Of course, if people are new to the game or expansions, you'll need extra time to explain rules and what's going on.

However, games with expansions do typically take longer to setup and tear down, although it may be worse or better depending on organization and setting up before hand.

kirkbauer wrote:
Is there any number I should avoid?

I would avoid 8, simply because the rules don't officially support it.

I have one group where we strive for 5p or 6p games. That said, 7p games aren't completely awful (although this is very subjective to personal preferences) as they are more interactive (more abilities, more variety in skill cards, more of each category of characters, and even the "special modes" like Mutr., Sympathizer, and/or CL), but I and many others avoid them whenever possible.

However, it can take longer because more coordination is required due to having more players to coordinate with in general, more time passing around crisis cards, planning out tackling skill checks (within the confines of secrecy rules of course) and you do get less skill cards on an individual basis. Also, fewer players will get titles, at least until the cylons reveal.

We've done two 4p games when only 8 people showed up. In another game night, the organizer told me we had 18 across 3 games, then 15 for 3 games. Then I noticed that among some of the folks that dropped out, the person with the 3rd copy dropped, so it became 15 across 2 games. One person would've gladly given up her seat, but the 15th person ended up being a no-show, so it was two games of 7p.

5 is often nice, and I typically prefer that number. However, unlike some here on BGG and amongst those I know IRL, I'm perfectly happy playing with 3p, 4p, 6p, or 7p, whereas some refuse to play with any number but 5. As you can see in your upcoming situation, exactly 5 isn't always possible. 8p requires some thought though as again, it's official.

And oh... Make sure someone picks Cain so you can use her Blind Jump! Say what you will about her and her OPG... she can cut a whole jump cycle off games, which translates into a 20 to 45 minute savings in time.

kirkbauer wrote:
Any suggestions on the best setup for each of those numbers of players?

6p
if using Daybreak, then definitely consider adding that set. Mutr. or CL is highly dependent on preferences. If using Mutr., make sure he remembers to draw a Mutiny when he gets a crisis with a jump icon! Few groups have forgotten this (still too many though) and it seemed like it really made those games for the worse.

If no Daybreak, but yes Pegasus, consider using Motives anyways. Some people loathe the Agendas from Peg enough to do this anyways.
You'll need to remove Make An Ally b/c that dabbles in Mutiny
The ones that require you to draw skill cards, change Human Fleet to draw 2 skill cards. (Not explicitly mentioned that they can be outside your skillset, so you have to be within your skillset. No restriction on drawing 2 of the same skill card, so that's doable now.)

7p
Daybreak using both Mutr. and CL as per Daybreak rules. Otherwise, again, consider using Motives from Day if you don't use that set, but have Peg. However, one player still needs to be a "half human half cylon" which is what the Mutr. tried to accomplish.

Without the Mutr., we're now in untested variant territory. Go with other suggestions, but mine would be 1 human either gets the Symp Cylon card from the start, and otherwise plays like a CL (although I supposed you could just have 2 CL in the game now ), or if it comes out during sleeper phase, give the Symp-Cylon 5 Motive cards, and everything else is the same.

8p
I really don't have much here. Go with other suggestions. If nothing else, then consider...

5 humans vs. 2 cylons and a CL (with Peg's Agendas or Daybreak's Motives). Food and Morale start at 1 less, pop at 2 less

5 humans vs. 2 cylons, 1 CL, and 1 Mutr. No changes in resources

Also consider upping the odds of Conflicted Loyalties (PG and/or FF from Exodus) to balance things more for cylons. You may also want to stack the Loyalty deck so that there will be at least on pre-sleeper cylon.
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Joel Carson
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ackmondual wrote:


kirkbauer wrote:
Is there any number I should avoid?

I would avoid 8, simply because the rules don't officially support it.

kirkbauer wrote:
Any suggestions on the best setup for each of those numbers of players?

6p
if using Daybreak, then definitely consider adding that set. Mutr. or CL is highly dependent on preferences. If using Mutr., make sure he remembers to draw a Mutiny when he gets a crisis with a jump icon! Few groups have forgotten this (still too many though) and it seemed like it really made those games for the worse.

If no Daybreak, but yes Pegasus, consider using Motives anyways. Some people loathe the Agendas from Peg enough to do this anyways.
You'll need to remove Make An Ally b/c that dabbles in Mutiny
The ones that require you to draw skill cards, change Human Fleet to draw 2 skill cards. (Not explicitly mentioned that they can be outside your skillset, so you have to be within your skillset. No restriction on drawing 2 of the same skill card, so that's doable now.)

7p
Daybreak using both Mutr. and CL as per Daybreak rules. Otherwise, again, consider using Motives from Day if you don't use that set, but have Peg. However, one player still needs to be a "half human half cylon" which is what the Mutr. tried to accomplish.

Without the Mutr., we're now in untested variant territory. Go with other suggestions, but mine would be 1 human either gets the Symp Cylon card from the start, and otherwise plays like a CL (although I supposed you could just have 2 CL in the game now ), or if it comes out during sleeper phase, give the Symp-Cylon 5 Motive cards, and everything else is the same.

8p
I really don't have much here. Go with other suggestions. If nothing else, then consider...

5 humans vs. 2 cylons and a CL (with Peg's Agendas or Daybreak's Motives). Food and Morale start at 1 less, pop at 2 less

5 humans vs. 2 cylons, 1 CL, and 1 Mutr. No changes in resources

Also consider upping the odds of Conflicted Loyalties (PG and/or FF from Exodus) to balance things more for cylons. You may also want to stack the Loyalty deck so that there will be at least on pre-sleeper cylon.


The second 8p suggestion actually has nine players. And both seem to have a better line-up than a seven player game.

Removing the mutineer from the first game makes one human less conflicted and adds another human for the cost of four resources. That's a very small price to pay.

The second option (I assume you meant four humans) would basically be a regular seven player game with one additional human with no penalty. That would greatly increase the odds of human victory.

But, like you mentioned, eight should be avoided in general until a group I accustomed to the standard game.
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ackmondual wrote:
8p
I really don't have much here. Go with other suggestions. If nothing else, then consider...

#1) 5 humans vs. 2 cylons and a CL (with Peg's Agendas or Daybreak's Motives). Food and Morale start at 1 less, pop at 2 less

#2) 5 humans vs. 2 cylons, 1 CL, and 1 Mutr. No changes in resources

Also consider upping the odds of Conflicted Loyalties (PG and/or FF from Exodus) to balance things more for cylons. You may also want to stack the Loyalty deck so that there will be at least on pre-sleeper cylon.




JCChrono wrote:
The second 8p suggestion actually has nine players. And both seem to have a better line-up than a seven player game.

JCChrono wrote:
The second option (I assume you meant four humans) would basically be a regular seven player game with one additional human with no penalty. That would greatly increase the odds of human victory.


Since the Mutr. is more or less a neutral Loyalty card (YANAC, but you still add one more to compensate for it), I did mean to infer that amongst the 5 humans and 2 cylons, one of them will be the Mutr. I probably could've worded that better.

Actually, looking back, the better way for this would be 5 humans vs. 3 cylons. I don't think anything else would need to change, except guarantee at lease one pre-sleeper cylon.

JCChrono wrote:
Removing the mutineer from the first game makes one human less conflicted and adds another human for the cost of four resources. That's a very small price to pay.
That's a page I took from FFG's official no-symp variant. FWIW, I suppose I could add in that revealed cylons draw not 2, but 3 skill cards per turn.

If that's still not enough, knock off another start Food (6 instead of 8). I may go with Morale (start at 8), but that may be too much,

 
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Michael Bending
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Depending on your playgroup here's what I would consider:

6 player: if don't use a variant, you have to use CL, Mutineer, Sympathizer or the Cylon-Sympathizer. I would argue against the sympathizer simply because it is considered a weaker element of the base game by many (myself included). I don't know anything about Cylon-Sympathizer (though I haven't heard good things). As far as CL vs Mutineer, I tend to find that Mutineer is more human friendly than the CL; so if you think you want to make it easier on the humans, choose Mutineer, otherwise go with CL.

7 player: 7 Player Daybreak games have been a blast in my experience. They tend to go long, but the Mutineer and CL aspects make the game (usually) pretty balanced. There's also a lot more wheeling and dealing as working together becomes much more important.

8 player: Never tried it and no official rules support it... however, I would suggest doing 3 Cylons and a Mutineer. CL adds a bit of cylon friendliness and more than 3/8th of the team being on the Cylon team seems to be pushing it a bit. 3 Cylons and a Mutineer (or maybe just 3 Cylons) is probably a decent 8 player balance.
 
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Pieter
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Here's my suggestion:

If you are with 6, do just the base game and use the official No-Sympathizer variant (4 humans, 2 Cylons, revealed Cylons draw 3 cards instead of 2, initial resource values at 8-7-9-10 instead of 8-8-10-12). This works very well, feels like the regular 5-player base game, and plays the quickest.

If you are with 7, use the Daybreak expansion and go for 4 humans, 2 Cylons, and 1 Cylon Leader, and include the Mutineer. But this makes the play quite complex.

If you are with 8, things actually get much easier. Just do the base game and play with 5 humans, 3 Cylons. This works quite well, unless you get into the unlucky situation that the 3 Cylons are sitting next to each other. Then the humans are screwed.

If you are with 9, you should probably split the group into 2, and play a regular 5-player BSG base game, while the remaining 4 do something else.

BTW, if you go for the base game, I suggest you include the rule that all the expansions introduce, namely that revealed Cylons immediately hand off their unrevealed loyalty cards to another player.
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Robert Suryase
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How about 5 humans and 3 cylons for a 8 player game?
 
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rsuryase wrote:
How about 5 humans and 3 cylons for a 8 player game?


I would expect the cylons to have a higher chance of winning. Just imagine if all three were sitting next to each other.
 
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