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Subject: First impression rss

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Froggy McFrogface
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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I will preface this post by unabashedly admitting that I am not (as of yet, anyway) a war gamer. (I do love Twilight Struggle, recognizing that there is debate regarding it's place in the war gamer world.) Having said that...

Last night's play of Cuba Libre was my first of the GMT COIN Series. I've been looking forward to trying this for quite sometime, and the game did deliver in terms of being intriguing. It was also muddled and confusing trying to wrap our heads around the game system and all of the qualifiers or exceptions to the basic actions. I'm sure this is attributable to our newbie status, but someone please tell me this gets easier with more plays?

We were two players: my opponent took the two rebel factions (26July and Directorio) and I played the Government and the Syndicate. We played through 3 of the 4 Propaganda cards before calling the game due to the late hour. Effectively at that point the government and 26July were tied on their victory differential.

I hope I can spawn more players and thereby more opportunities to play this as well as some of the other COIN games, as I really enjoyed how this works. Can anyway point me towards a concise player aid that highlights requirements & exceptions in the various faction actions?
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Wendell
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Si non potes reperire Berolini in tabula, ludens essetis non WIF.
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Yes, Cuba Libre (and the other COIN games) gets easier with more plays.

I can't point to a better player aid than the ones included in the game. That folder has about 85% of the rules needed to play AND includes the victory conditions.

And yes, I agree that understanding the mechanics (how do you march? how do you rally? etc) is one thing - knowing what to actually DO is hard. That's what makes CL (and AA and ADP and FitL) interesting games.
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Froggy McFrogface
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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The faction sheets were great, although didn't always feel complete. I remember reading on set of procedures for a given action, then finding a more complete (almost to the point of being contradictory) in the rules. We spent a lot of time referring back to the rules and trying to trace the 'OK I can do this if this condition exists, otherwise I can do this other thing as longs as I have 3 of those and Jupiter is in ascension.
 
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Travis Hill
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I've muddled through this game quite a bit as well and have found that once you get the basic actions down, all you need is repetition. I'm just now playing it solo with the AI and that's an entirely different story on having to read and reference the rulebook again and again.

Overall I think it's a neat game. So far I think I like it best with all 4. Two is passable. And solo? Well, I've been nitpicking through the game over the last 4 days if that says anything.
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"L'état, c'est moi."
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It does get easier with repeated plays. And it's my favourite of the COIN series (so far - Fire in the Lake is coming).
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Koinsky
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Cuba Libre was also my first COIN game.

I had a hard time to understand what to do on my turn the first times I played it, I got overwhelmed by all the options and couldn't actually choose what to do and why I would choose that option over the other.

The player aids that come with the game won't "teach" you the game but there are very well done, once you know what you want to achieve.

3 things helped me a lot to figure that out :

- I read the playbook tutorial during the first play then and once again after a few plays (it's amazing how the commentaries are full of useful strategical informations and technical points I missed the first time)

- the inside game video by Joel Toppen, new strategies suggestions compare to the playbook :
http://boardgamegeek.com/video/32647/cuba-libre/cuba-libre-i...

- playing the game solo several times playing the 4 factions by myself. That was the best way for me to understand the interactions between the factions.

Once you figure clearly what are the victory conditions of each factions and the interactions it's a very meaty game and a pure pleasure to play. It's really amazing how it plays fast once you've got the entire picture.


Don't give up, that game worths all your efforts.


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Ken Dilloo
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Everything is relative to perception, and your perception is limited.
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I think it is true of all of Volko's games: High bar to entry, but more than worth it. Learning 4 asymmetric factions is tough. I did this file:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/94978/how-do-i-results...

It is by no means perfect, but I don't think I would play without it. Might help to sort out the factions.
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Tor Iver Wilhelmsen
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I still hope for a COIN game set in the Dune universe. Atreides, Harkonnen, Fremen, Bene Gesserit, make it happen.
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Froggy McFrogface
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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bigloo33 wrote:
I think it is true of all of Volko's games: High bar to entry, but more than worth it. Learning 4 asymmetric factions is tough. I did this file:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/94978/how-do-i-results...

It is by no means perfect, but I don't think I would play without it. Might help to sort out the factions.


We had this file printed out at the table last night - thanks for it! Very helpful.
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Froggy McFrogface
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When green is all there is to be, it could make you wonder why. But why wonder? I'm green, and it'll do fine: it's beautiful, and I think it's what I want to be.
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koinskyz wrote:
It's really amazing how it plays fast once you've got the entire picture.


I could clearly see this even in our wonky-through last night - very elegant and streamlined.

More plays, please!
 
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