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Subject: Yet another scoring variant rss

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Lars Krebs
Denmark
Aalborg SV
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Love this game, but like many others, I find the scoring system anticlimactic. Even with the official "gold cards equal to the number of good dwarfs in play"-correction.

The problems:

1. The difference between the awarded gold pieces (gp) is too large (4 gp is four times as many gp as 1 gp - sounds trivial, but it is actually a pretty big flaw in my opinion). Makes it difficult to catch up.

2. You always play a fixed number of rounds, which often makes it possible to determine who will definitely not win or who will definitley not loose etc.

My thoughts:

In case of good dwarf round-victory:

#1 (the first to find the gold): 5 gp.
All other good dwarfs receives 4 gp*.

*All rewards are reduced by 1 gp per broken tool (max -3 gp per dwarf).

Bear in mind that the winning dwarf doesn't have any broken tools (since he obviously played a tunnel card to win) so he will always get the 5 gp).

In case of saboteur round-victory:

Each saboteur is awarded 5 gp*.

*All rewards are reduced by 1 gp per broken tool.

In case of greedy dwarf round-victory:

The greedy dwarf alone is awarded 5 gp.

The winner

The winner is the first dwarf to reach a minimum of 15 gp (each players gold is visible during the game). Rounds are played until a winner is found. If multiple dwarfs reach a minimum of 15 gp after the same round, the dwarf with the most gp is the winner. A tie is a tie.

Any comments?
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Frederic Moyersoen
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It looks like an interesting scoring system.

However, I fear that it can easily end in a tie after 3 rounds. I should try it to be sure about it.
 
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Lars Krebs
Denmark
Aalborg SV
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Hi Frederic. Thanks for replying and thank you for a great game.

Well, I've played a few mock up games (solo) with this scoring system and in my limited experience ties are rare. More rare than the current scoring system anyway. I played with the official rules this actual night (7 players) and three ended up with 5 gp each.

I understand your concern. I bet you're thinking that with my system a minimum of one player will earn 5 gp each round therefore draws will be inevitable. But bear in mind that all non-#1 players will earn anything from 0-5 gp each round (because of sabotage) which disperses the scores greatly after each round.

I'm not sure where I'm going with this. The game core is really well designed and I really enjoy the game. It's already a regular at our weekly game night. Nobody really cares about who wins anyway, but as a true board game geek I personally can't help thinking about alternatives to the scoring system (which is your game's only weakness imho).

Anyway, try it out if you'd like. It's easily simulated in a spreadsheet.

PS. Pure curiosity. What other ways of scoring was explored during game development?
 
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Frederic Moyersoen
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In the original rules, there were 6 cards showing ordinary rocks among the Gold cards. These had no value. So, the miners who won the round were not sure to get at least one point. The purpose was to create some competition among the miners.
The publisher wanted a scoring system which rewarded a more cooperative game play and skipped this idea.

In the first playtests, the saboteurs got a similar reward system as the miners, but most playtesters preferred a fixed number of gold points in relation to the difficulty to win.

Another idea which was skipped, was to allow the miner who established the connection, to draw 2 Gold cards and keep one of it. The other miners just drew 1 card. The maximum value of gold stones was 2 instead of 3.

For Saboteur 2, the expansion, I wanted to simplify the scoring system. As this game was designed for experienced players, I thought that a better balanced scoring system was more appropriate.
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