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Subject: Ugh rss

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Trent Y.
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Edmonton
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I got this unexpected in the mail on Sunday. Tried it out.

It's a polished game, looks good, but it has some pretty massive flaws.

The initiative system is bad, allowing two of the four factions to hold the initiative throughout 95% of the game. It becomes a double bonus because these factions end up rolling more dice and getting more out of each turn.

My main issue with this game is with the CCC Mercs ability. It is flat out overpowered.

It allows you to reserve (meaning once rolled, you get to hold onto that die until used later) your Mercs, who not only prevent one attack against you, but actually reverse the attack back (and it can target the original attacker).

This is flat out stupid. This game is extremely tight for dice. Every attack is felt. The CCC player can continue to throw attacks at you, but their Mercs ability not only shuts down your potential to attack them, it forces you to attack yourself! This one ability is game winning.

There are lots of attacks in this game, and the CCC Mercs ability, as written, counters them all. This means that their ability counters dice attacks, all three of the other factions mercs, the leverage ability and one special ability of the FCC and the special ability of the USCR.

Now I get, that you can overwhelm the Mercs by trying to combo a weaker attack die and then using your Mercs or something to that effect. However, in play, this game is very tight. Every action counts and every damage is felt. So by rolling an attack die and then using that, only to be countered by the CCC Mercs and taking the damage yourself is brutal. You've wasted an action and taken damage yourself.

Anyway, yes, that's a rant. Yes there are tricks around the CCC Mercs ability, but that doesn't make it less powerful or a stupid idea to include in the game.
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Salvador Bernadó
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I was waiting for this game and had high hopes for it.
It's attacking mandatory?
I mean, do you need to attack to win or it's possible to win without attacking?
 
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MM
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Sarimrune wrote:
I got this unexpected in the mail on Sunday. Tried it out.

It's a polished game, looks good, but it has some pretty massive flaws.

The initiative system is bad, allowing two of the four factions to hold the initiative throughout 95% of the game. It becomes a double bonus because these factions end up rolling more dice and getting more out of each turn.

That was something I noticed as well when I picked this up. Initiative is key to winning (IMHO).

I posted questions on Mercs' page and the designer commented (not that it helped). Here's the thread for those interested:

http://megacongames.com/community/#/discussion/693/first-pla...

The game became much more fun/strategic when both factions had same sized resource pools.

I hoped to get some insight into the design of different sized pools, advantages, and counter strategies.
 
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Colin West
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there are plenty of ways to get around initiative and attacking. I've played it a few times w/ my wife and we've both thoroughly enjoyed it. Honestly w/ reserves actions etc the attack functions were more costly and head less impact than some of the espionage abilities.

there seems to be a lot of "playing chicken" w/ initiative and attacking

anyways thats just my take, and im not saying its perfect but i think w/ some strategy and thought you can get around some of these issues
 
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Craig C
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It's a pretty powerful ability, but there are ways around it. In the 4-5 games I've played so far, I haven't seen the CCC's ability effectively used yet, since our games have ended due to a Control or similar effect being used. Plus, early in the game, reserving that basically sidelines the CCC's only attack die, so it gives the other player a break.

Not saying that it isn't potentially overpowered in certain situations; I haven't played the game enough yet to definitively make that call, but it hasn't been a game-breaker for me yet.

And the initiative thing in a 2-player game pretty much means the same player goes first every time, but if you time an ability correctly, you can negate that advantage.

For me, the ability (can't remember which) that allows you to specifically target a zone to damage is the most powerful so far, because timing it right allows you to damage/downsize everything in the other player's spent pool, and can rapidly end their offensive abilities.
 
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Trent Y.
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This game seems to have potential, but I cannot get over the flaws.

For those who haven't gotten a copy, the initiative system is meant to be balanced by another part of the game, which is the maximum number of dice that a corp can possess.

So the two corps have have lower resources areas (and thus will have perma-lose initiative against the two corps with higher resource areas) will both have a greater maximum potential dice.

The problem with this 'balance' is that you can only purchase one new die a round but you will often be losing one die a round (due to an attack or another effect). Some rounds it was quite easy to lose 2 dice per round.

Thus, while the balance is attempted, it fails because it is extremely hard to beat this curve. While the die you are gaining (asset dice) is better than the die you often lose (infrastructure dice) sounds good, you will find the occasional round where you are unable to purchase an asset die and will only lose a die (due to an attack) in a given round.

Winning and losing is pretty much who can get a random roll that allows them to gain without loss or make the opponent lose without a gain (or both).

Anyway, as I was saying, this game appears to have much potential but it's never achieved. Allowing some of the corps have have larger potential dice seems great, except that it seems nearly impossible to ever achieve that potential. At least in 2 player (and the core set is only enough to play 2 player).

Finally, each corp has a particular asset die that it's strong with (political, economics, subterfuge or attack). Each asset type appears balanced which is nice. but there is virtually no reason to branch outside your strong area during the game. If you start with a die type, you should probably stick with acquiring more of that die type. There is one exception to this: economics dice. They generate the best 'money' in the game and thus are great for acquiring more dice.

Still, it would have been neat to have a viable strategy of broadening your original starting position. But acquiring new dice and using various actions cost too much 'money' that it isn't often worth it to broaden out. Just focus on your starting die type and hope that you get lucky to get a better initial start than your opponent and get the win.


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MM
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Glad to see others have the same opinion/experience as me ... I was beginning to think I wasn't smart enough to figure it out (maybe that's still the case).

My advice is to play factions (2-player) with equal resource pools. My play experience improved greatly when I did that.

For those that have thought through the strategy and believe there are ways to combat the initiative advantage, I'd love to see specifically how you're doing it. Specific examples of dice play would be appreciated.

Thanks!

Happy New Year all!
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Mike Dudek
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Seen some of the same things others have reported here so far. The game didn't really grab my attention after a couple solo test plays and two games against another actual live opponent.

He felt the same as I did, that it was kind of 'blah' overall, and given all the other things we could be doing, wasn't worth any further effort. If I was rating on a 'play' or 'shelve' scale, it definitely gets a 'shelve'.

As an aside, did anyone else see a very noticeable difference in the sizes of their dice? Some of mine were very obviously smaller than others, even compared to the same color. I realize there can be some variation with the tumbling/polishing and all, but this was more pronounced to the point of being very easy to spot without a micrometer at hand.
 
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MM
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MJames70 wrote:
As an aside, did anyone else see a very noticeable difference in the sizes of their dice? Some of mine were very obviously smaller than others, even compared to the same color. I realize there can be some variation with the tumbling/polishing and all, but this was more pronounced to the point of being very easy to spot without a micrometer at hand.


Odd. Not in the slightest. ... and this is the type of thing my OCD notices in a nanosecond.
 
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Bryn Edwards
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I just received it today and haven't played yet, but having just looked through all the abilities and stuff, the CCC MERC ability didn't jump out at me for being OP, just because it's so expensive. 3 to reserve + 4 to replace the die = 7 resources. I didn't see anything else THAT expensive.

MJames70 wrote:
As an aside, did anyone else see a very noticeable difference in the sizes of their dice?


Yes, one of my red dice is very much smaller than the rest. I commented on it in the KS comments. I thought I was special =/
 
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Mike Dudek
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I went through mine, although without a micrometer The yellow Infrastructure and green Economic dice as a whole were bigger than the red Military, grey Economic, or blue Espionage dice. The yellow and green stacks were both several mm taller than stacks of 10 of the other colors. Enough that it could be seen by eye, without measuring.
 
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Leon Mallett
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Mistermannindy wrote:
Glad to see others have the same opinion/experience as me ... I was beginning to think I wasn't smart enough to figure it out (maybe that's still the case).

My advice is to play factions (2-player) with equal resource pools. My play experience improved greatly when I did that.

For those that have thought through the strategy and believe there are ways to combat the initiative advantage, I'd love to see specifically how you're doing it. Specific examples of dice play would be appreciated.

Thanks!

Happy New Year all!


Only one game in, but I wonder whether a slight reconfiguration of the rules would help the Initiative situation/problem?

I was wondering whether rolling the dice to determine Initiative would be workable? Using the following revision of steps:

4.Roll Dice
- Determine Initiative by totalling the number of Resources rolled (face numbers added up)
- break ties as per current rules
5. Reveal and Financial Overflow
 
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