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Subject: Recommended first time setup? rss

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Mark Palframan
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The first time I played Keyflower, it was pretty overwhelming. I was wondering if anybody has ever compiled suggestions for what tiles to use with the game to make somebody's first play a little less intimidating. Specifically for a two player game to introduce a new player, what tiles would you pull out to play with?
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Mark M
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I'm sure others will have more helpful responses, but make sure you get the wood, stone and coal producing tiles out there (may have the names wrong, but the brown, gray and black resources) or it can make upgrading some tiles a challenge. The gold producing tile and one that gives you better transport/upgrading options would also help. It is a great game - stick with it and you will learn to adapt to what comes out. I'm suggesting early round tiles, so maybe others have recommendations for what comes out later.
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Zach Willey
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I think I would actually recommend not doing any particular setup like this. A big part of Keyflower is learning to make do with the resources that are available whether or not they're the ones you need.

Of course, it probably won't be a very competitive first game and you'll have to do a lot of coaching but I think jumping right in is better in the long run.
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Mark Palframan
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To clarify, since upon re-reading my post it's definitely not clear, this would be to teach somebody who has never played the game how to play, not for people who have only played a little bit.
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ArrBeeDee Dial
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I would ensure both homes are upgraded with the same resources.

Then, you both will suffer with whatever is drawn. I actually don't use the shields for the first play either. There are so many things to think about that allowing this release lets people concentrate on the tiles and town-building.

The next game always gets the same comment, "wow, this is hard when I can't see your meeples".

That is only for the first game (or maybe 2-3 with much less capable players).
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Colin Marsh
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Here's how I would do it.

1. Start with a basic overview of the game - there will be 4 seasons, how bidding / activation works, what happens at the end of a season, transportation / upgrading, etc.

2. I would then lay out ALL of the spring tiles. Explain what each one does before & after upgrade. Point out that they have 4 roads each so that initially options will be broad but over time narrow down.

3. Next lay out all of the Summer Tiles but cover the boats last. Show both sides and explain how they can change the rules. Build out a sample village with a coherent strategy with spring / summer tiles.

4. Lay out all of the Fall tiles and cover the storage tiles last. Use this as an opportunity to reinforce that transport value is one resource moving one tile. Expand your sample town and show how they might activate transport tiles to move goods onto the storage tiles. This not only shows them how to use storage tiles but it reinforces how the pick up & deliver mechanic works in Keyflower.

5. Lay out all of the possible winter tiles and explain how each one scores. Reiterate that nothing can score twice. Point out the ones that synergize well with your sample town.

From there go ahead and set run the game as normal with the following modifications:

1. As was mentioned earlier pick two home tiles that upgrade with the same resources. (great idea Bryan)

2. Give both players 2 meeples of each color and then randomize only the final two.

3. Make sure both players position the water on their home tile pointing towards them and initially build away from that. It's too difficult for them to understand the nuances of boat placement at this point and you don't want them hampered by thinking they need to leave a spot for their boat at end game.

Before starting confirm that they understand their winter tiles. If they don't offer them to exchange one or offer to explain all of them and do a redeal - whichever makes them more comfortable.
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