Sam Hatch
Australia
Mudgeeraba
Queensland
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So a fellow BGG'er posted this (http://www.tabletopgeneral.com/2014/11/06/x-wing-escalation-...) method of play a while back, and I've been itching to give it a crack.

We played last night, and it's REALLY fun. Such a cool inclusive, and crazy way to play.

We decided to not include the upgrade cards, which unfortuantely took away viable ship options, and the progression was kinda similar for a few of the levels... but we ended up going without them because:

1. not everyone has played the game too much yet, and doesn't know the upgrade cards every well. ie. would take ages to admin

2. the ships we own between us are really unbalanced in the way of one guy will own just a core set, and another will own 20 ships, so remembering where a particular card came from if you 'borrowed' it would be a nightmare!

And here's what we found:

1. Awesome format, really fun to play and only have to concentrate on one ship.

2. we started on each corner and middle of the side of the board, which was fine, but our board has X/Y grid on the edge, so when we 're-spawned' in with a new ship we actually had a random x/y co-ordinate generator app on someone's phone, and the new ship 'popped up' in the randomly assigned location. (we said it was cos they just came out of hyperspace into the middle of the fray)

3. When you died, you had to sit out for one round before you re-spawned with your next ship. This was good cos it gave you a punishment for dying, and also gave you a few mins to go grab your new ship.

4. We made a rule that if you flew off the board, or died on an asteroid you would lose the points your ship was worth at the time.

5. we did just use the one board, it was a good size

Some thoughts for next time would be:

1. once everyone but 1 player has moved onto the next tier of ship (ie died once) the last guy remaining on that tier should get some bonus points for his ability to survive with such a low level ship (maybe 10 points?) one guy got stuck on a level one tie pretty much the entire night.

2. Maybe some kind of assist points? It seemed like a lot of the time someone would do all the work, and another guy would just swoop in a finish a dude off and get the kill/points

3. our game kinda ended in a weird way, because someone hit a shuttle and gave him a critical card that said he'd have to roll for damage if he did any red turns. The game continued for a while, and the shuttle eventually did a red turn and rolled the damage on itself, blew up, and we gave the points to the guy who'd caused the damage (since no one else had shot at the Shuttle since that critical happened)

So, yeah, not sure if that was the right thing to end it with or not, but it worked ok I guess.

I also made a handy sheet of paper for each tier of ship, so people could just walk over and select a new one from the new tier easily...I uploaded the file here for anyone to use:

http://s000.tinyupload.com/?file_id=72185909027203568080

Everyone really enjoyed the night, and we keen to do it again!

Feel free to add any thoughts and tips below
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Jake Conway
United States
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We've played this a few times before and enjoyed it. Here's a couple thoughts for you on how to work the upgrade cards in, since it really does make the game more enjoyable.

First, if you are worried about swapping cards around from different people, don't actually use the cards...just write down on a piece of paper or something what you are using, or use an app. It tends to make cleanup a lot easier, and if you ever need to reference the card in case of a rules dispute, you can just go get it then.

Second, don't stop the game for people who are eliminated. In general, someone can get knocked out, go find a new ship/upgrade combo, and come back in the next round. If you've got someone who takes too much time trying to figure out who to fly, just keep playing without them, until they bring a ship to the table. It really keeps gameplay on the table moving along, while at the same time, adding an incentive for eliminated players to get back in quickly, so they don't miss more rounds.

One upgrade I've been thinking about trying is playing with 8 or so players on two maps, where it starts off evenly distributed between the maps, then when you die, you move to the other map, to prevent the scenario where you come back more powerful and take out the ship that took you out constantly, and add a bit more variation to it.
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