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Subject: Questions from first reading rss

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Brad Johnson
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First, I think this is a really interesting idea that really seems like it should meet your objective of being a middle-ground between the original Dune game and the super-simplicity of Dune Express. I haven’t actually had a chance to play yet, but I hope to do so soon.

After reading your rules, I did have a number of questions and trivial editorial comments, though, that I’d like to offer for discussion here. (Sorry for the long text.)

Rules clarification questions:

1) Rules, pg 1, Supplies – You mean that the Corrino faction gets a total of 8 regular and 4 large troop cubes, not in addition to the base 12 cubes, correct? Similarly, the Fremen faction ONLY gets 8 large troop cubes, not 12 regular plus 8 large, correct?

2) Rules, pg 2, Recruit Troops – Is the rule about only having 1 Leader on your faction card at any time actually correct and necessary? It seems that all factions except for Atreides only have 1 leader, so it doesn’t apply to them, and Atreides SHOULD be allowed to revive both of their leaders, so it shouldn’t ally to them either, right?

3) Rules, pg 2, Kanly – If there are no Thumpers remaining in supply, can you take one from another player, or not?

4) Rules, pg 4, Game End – Can the BG predict the Guild’s default victory (like in Rex), or not (like in Dune)? How prevalent are Guild default victories relative to “early” solo or alliance wins?

5) Rules, pg 5, Atreides (also Atreides faction sheet) – Is Honorable Duel optional? (And if so, I assume you decide to apply it AFTER seeing the results of the battle, correct?) If you won the battle, do ALL of your troops go to your faction sheet, or only the ones you committed? Do all other troops get disposed of normally?

6) Rules pg 5, Corrino/Spacing Guild (also faction sheets) – Are the Corrino and Guild spice reserves limited to 5 max as shown on the faction sheets?

Design questions:

1) Rules, pg 2, Kanly – In practice, is the loss of 1 troop cube for using a weapon really significant? Just from first impressions, it seems like it might be used to effect in certain situations, but I’m not sure how frequently that will be. Did you consider making the effect greater (like removing 2 cubes or more)?

2) Rules, pg 3, Combat – It seems almost sure that players will always want to spend as many ally troops as possible in a battle so that they can’t attack you in your ally’s next turn. On the other hand, if you require the ally’s permission to use their troops, they would surely rarely give it (unless it meant the difference between winning the game or not.) But with the rules as written, how often do you find that a player is willing to ship into a location with his ally during the ally’s turn?

3) Rules, pg 3, Sandstorm – Did you consider a way for the storm to move 2 or more spaces instead of just 1 space each time? In practice, is there enough movement of the storm such that there’s a sense of threat around the board, or do players tend to feel very safe when the storm is on the other side of the board from their location?

4) Rules, pg 5, Fremen – So Fremen are highly motivated to ally with anyone, just so they can recruit more cheaply? This seems slightly odd to me, but I guess it reflects their “need” to work for a “Messiah”, and it could be an interesting dynamic.

5) Rules pg 5, Bene Gesserit – How likely is it that the BG prediction can be met if it is invalidated by the predicted faction being in an alliance? It doesn’t seem like the BG can really manipulate that at all. I think I would be inclined to never try for a solo victory just to avoid the possibility of a BG prediction. (And if it’s anything like original Dune, solo victories are probably much, much more difficult to achieve anyway.)

6) General – Did you consider giving factions other than the BT an ability to use spice for something other than just shipping? It feels like there might be more spice available than will typically be needed by most factions. Have you found that to be true at all? (Average spice roll is only 2-3 spice per player per turn, but if you roll 5 spice and have a harvester or two, what do actually do with all that spice? Might be interesting if you could spend some amount of spice to get extra revival or something like that?)

Minor editorial comments:

1) Rules, pg 5, Atreides (also Atreides faction sheet) – “Duell” should be “Duel”.

2) Rules, pg 5, Smugglers – The rules say “Pay 2 spice for any Troop placed on the Polar Sink”, but the faction sheet says it more clearly: “Pay 2 spice for any Troop YOU SHIP to the Polar Sink.” The version in the rules is ambiguous.

3) Faction sheets – Sometimes phase names (e.g. “Roll”) are marked with quotes, and many times not. May want to just make it consistent.
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Heiko Günther
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tempus42 wrote:
After reading your rules, I did have a number of questions and trivial editorial comments, though, that I’d like to offer for discussion here.
Thanks for taking not only the time to read the rules thoroughly but also to give such detailed feedback. It'll help to make the next version more concise and understandable.

tempus42 wrote:
1) Rules, pg 1, Supplies – You mean that the Corrino faction gets a total of 8 regular and 4 large troop cubes, not in addition to the base 12 cubes, correct? Similarly, the Fremen faction ONLY gets 8 large troop cubes, not 12 regular plus 8 large, correct?
Correct.

tempus42 wrote:
2) Rules, pg 2, Recruit Troops – Is the rule about only having 1 Leader on your faction card at any time actually correct and necessary? It seems that all factions except for Atreides only have 1 leader, so it doesn’t apply to them, and Atreides SHOULD be allowed to revive both of their leaders, so it shouldn’t ally to them either, right?
You are correct, this is left from an earlier version that had all Factions use the same Leaders. I does not apply to Atreides either way, Faction abilities override general rules.

tempus42 wrote:
3) Rules, pg 2, Kanly – If there are no Thumpers remaining in supply, can you take one from another player, or not?
No.

tempus42 wrote:
4) Rules, pg 4, Game End – Can the BG predict the Guild’s default victory (like in Rex), or not (like in Dune)? How prevalent are Guild default victories relative to “early” solo or alliance wins?
The BG may predict the Guild's default victory. Not allowing that makes it too easy for the Guild to just play against all other players, without actually trying to win "regularly". Most of the time, the game seems to end early either way and the default victory does not happen.

tempus42 wrote:
5) Rules, pg 5, Atreides (also Atreides faction sheet) – Is Honorable Duel optional? (And if so, I assume you decide to apply it AFTER seeing the results of the battle, correct?) If you won the battle, do ALL of your troops go to your faction sheet, or only the ones you committed? Do all other troops get disposed of normally?
This needs clarification. Honourable Duel is optional. It affects only Troops that would normally go to your supply, i.e. Troops you committed, and, in case you lost the battle, Troops you have in that region.

tempus42 wrote:
6) Rules pg 5, Corrino/Spacing Guild (also faction sheets) – Are the Corrino and Guild spice reserves limited to 5 max as shown on the faction sheets?
Yes.

---

tempus42 wrote:
1) Rules, pg 2, Kanly – In practice, is the loss of 1 troop cube for using a weapon really significant? Just from first impressions, it seems like it might be used to effect in certain situations, but I’m not sure how frequently that will be. Did you consider making the effect greater (like removing 2 cubes or more)?
Removing 1 Troop cube is in many situations very significant. There are a lot less Troops on the board than in Dune or Rex.

tempus42 wrote:
2) Rules, pg 3, Combat – It seems almost sure that players will always want to spend as many ally troops as possible in a battle so that they can’t attack you in your ally’s next turn. On the other hand, if you require the ally’s permission to use their troops, they would surely rarely give it (unless it meant the difference between winning the game or not.) But with the rules as written, how often do you find that a player is willing to ship into a location with his ally during the ally’s turn?
This is what makes allying interesting and difficult, at least in our games. Moving Troops into a Region where the active player will have a combat is a commitment as an Ally. You may of course tell the active player how many of your Troops he may use, but this is not binding at all; He is the commander in this combat and will do as he sees fit. If agreements are not honoured, however, that questions future agreements with that player, obviously.

tempus42 wrote:
3) Rules, pg 3, Sandstorm – Did you consider a way for the storm to move 2 or more spaces instead of just 1 space each time? In practice, is there enough movement of the storm such that there’s a sense of threat around the board, or do players tend to feel very safe when the storm is on the other side of the board from their location?
The sandstorm seems to move fast enough. There are only 6 spaces on its track, moving 2 spaces at once would make it too unpredictable. As you are aiming to roll high on the spice die, the Sandstorm moves almost every turn.

tempus42 wrote:
4) Rules, pg 5, Fremen – So Fremen are highly motivated to ally with anyone, just so they can recruit more cheaply? This seems slightly odd to me, but I guess it reflects their “need” to work for a “Messiah”, and it could be an interesting dynamic.
Actually, the Fremen are not supposed to have found their Messiah yet. In my mind at least, this game happens at the start of the first book, the Emperor has given Arrakis to House Atreides, House Harkonnen does not agree to leave, a fight for the planet starts and all of a sudden everybody is all in. The Fremen, under these circumstances, would rather tend to "sit it out", making them a bit slow in recruitment unless their allies would incite them to get a move on.

tempus42 wrote:
5) Rules pg 5, Bene Gesserit – How likely is it that the BG prediction can be met if it is invalidated by the predicted faction being in an alliance? It doesn’t seem like the BG can really manipulate that at all. I think I would be inclined to never try for a solo victory just to avoid the possibility of a BG prediction. (And if it’s anything like original Dune, solo victories are probably much, much more difficult to achieve anyway.)
I am torn on this as well. It first read "not in an alliance with you", to make sure the BG can not force their plans too actively on the player they want to win.

tempus42 wrote:
6) General – Did you consider giving factions other than the BT an ability to use spice for something other than just shipping? It feels like there might be more spice available than will typically be needed by most factions. Have you found that to be true at all? (Average spice roll is only 2-3 spice per player per turn, but if you roll 5 spice and have a harvester or two, what do actually do with all that spice? Might be interesting if you could spend some amount of spice to get extra revival or something like that?)
Sometimes you have enough spice, most of the time too few, sometimes too much. Actually, more factions had abilities to do with more uses for Spice, but this adds the need to somewhat "track" your spice spending during your turn, adding a bit unnecessary overhead. I considered in the contrary to change that BT ability to not use Spice but only work with an unused Faction die of the Faction you are attacking, effectively making it more difficult to use, something I consider good as it is a bit too strong.
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J
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I may have been missing something, but doesn't the BG power mean that before the game has even begun, it's been decided that 1 faction literally can't win solo?

It seems a big ramp up from it in Dune where they need pick turn. There you can sort of avoid it (if BG player suddenly seems very interested in you doing well maybe avoid it for a turn) whereas here it seems there's nothing you can do (other than only go for allied win).

Very much open to the possibility I've missed something obvious however!
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Bruno Lambert
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I also have a question/comment.

1) If you are allied with House Corrino, and you use their Alliance ability (Chairman of CHAOM), do you receive a spice reserve? If not, then in what way do you use their ability? Wouldn't it be better to remove the knot? If you receive spice in your reserve, doesn't there have to be a spice track for each faction?

2) The factions "Smuggler" and "Bene Thlailax" are not on the faction dice, hence, you cannot become an ally with them. Why do they have an Alliance Ability?

Looks like a great game anyway.

EDIT: added comment 2
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Bruno_L wrote:

2) The factions "Smuggler" and "Bene Thlailax" are not on the faction dice, hence, you cannot become an ally with them. Why do they have an Alliance Ability?


I suppose you can't, but if they roll your symbol they can propose an alliance to you.

Which makes me think of something. I think it would be cool to have different faction dice to each faction (or a chart to each faction, I don't know), sort of showing how some alliances will never or are more likely to happen...
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Heiko Günther
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Bruno_L wrote:
1) If you are allied with House Corrino, and you use their Alliance ability (Chairman of CHAOM), do you receive a spice reserve? If not, then in what way do you use their ability? Wouldn't it be better to remove the knot? If you receive spice in your reserve, doesn't there have to be a spice track for each faction?
You are right, that should be clarified; if you have House Corrino as your ally, you can not save Spice yourself. The Corrino player can give you access to his Spice reserve, i.e. if you need Spice and he consents, you may use from his reserves. Note that this is not possible with the Spacing Guild. They are too greedy.

Bruno_L wrote:
2) The factions "Smuggler" and "Bene Thlailax" are not on the faction dice, hence, you cannot become an ally with them. Why do they have an Alliance Ability?
There are special conditions on which you can ally with both of these noted on their Faction cards.
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Bruno Lambert
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lee elektrik wrote:
Bruno_L wrote:
1) If you are allied with House Corrino, and you use their Alliance ability (Chairman of CHAOM), do you receive a spice reserve? If not, then in what way do you use their ability? Wouldn't it be better to remove the knot? If you receive spice in your reserve, doesn't there have to be a spice track for each faction?
You are right, that should be clarified; if you have House Corrino as your ally, you can not save Spice yourself. The Corrino player can give you access to his Spice reserve, i.e. if you need Spice and he consents, you may use from his reserves. Note that this is not possible with the Spacing Guild. They are too greedy.

Well, in that case, I would remove the knot because you (active player) don't use their ability, but they may help you in other ways than normal.

lee elektrik wrote:
Bruno_L wrote:
2) The factions "Smuggler" and "Bene Thlailax" are not on the faction dice, hence, you cannot become an ally with them. Why do they have an Alliance Ability?
There are special conditions on which you can ally with both of these noted on their Faction cards.

Indeed, I misread, my bad.

PSchulman wrote:
Bruno_L wrote:

2) The factions "Smuggler" and "Bene Thlailax" are not on the faction dice, hence, you cannot become an ally with them. Why do they have an Alliance Ability?


I suppose you can't, but if they roll your symbol they can propose an alliance to you.

But only the active player can use the abilities of their allies. It was my mistake for misreading.

Awesome art by the way.
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Jo D
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Under supplies is written "in each of the 6 factions" I guess it should be 8, right?

Under Kanly it is written : Using Crysknife you may not remove a token belonging to the player holding the Shield token" Should it be troop or did i miss something?

Move Troops: Can you ally choose between your target region and the polar sink, or does he have to take the same region you did?

A big question: Can you use your Ally ability by yourself, or is it impossible for you to take advantage of that. Example: can Atreides ever use honourable duel?
 
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XPartisanX wrote:
Under supplies is written "in each of the 6 factions" I guess it should be 8, right?

I think not because two of the factions have a different troop supply. Corrino have 8 small and 4 large. Fremen have 8 large.

XPartisanX wrote:

Under Kanly it is written : Using Crysknife you may not remove a token belonging to the player holding the Shield token" Should it be troop or did i miss something?

Yes, you are correct. I think it's a typo.

XPartisanX wrote:

Move Troops: Can you ally choose between your target region and the polar sink, or does he have to take the same region you did?

It says you can always choose the Polar Sink, so I guess that goes for your ally as well.

XPartisanX wrote:

A big question: Can you use your Ally ability by yourself, or is it impossible for you to take advantage of that. Example: can Atreides ever use honourable duel?

No, you can never use your ally power, only your allies.
 
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ChillusMaximus wrote:

XPartisanX wrote:

A big question: Can you use your Ally ability by yourself, or is it impossible for you to take advantage of that. Example: can Atreides ever use honourable duel?

No, you can never use your ally power, only your allies.

Are you sure about this? I couldn't find this explicitly stated this way in the rules. I assumed the ability with the "knot" symbol was usable by both you and your ally. Did I miss something?
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tempus42 wrote:
ChillusMaximus wrote:

XPartisanX wrote:

A big question: Can you use your Ally ability by yourself, or is it impossible for you to take advantage of that. Example: can Atreides ever use honourable duel?

No, you can never use your ally power, only your allies.

Are you sure about this? I couldn't find this explicitly stated this way in the rules. I assumed the ability with the "knot" symbol was usable by both you and your ally. Did I miss something?

Now I'm not sure...

But it's called 'special alliance ability'. I figured it would only be used while in an alliance.

This is what makes the game so interesting and thematic to me. Having to choose and reforge alliances every game turn is very clever.

Dune: The Dice Game - Rules - Page 2 - Ally wrote:

...You may invite 1 other player to be your Ally for this turn. You may only invite a player if you froze at least 1 Faction die showing their Faction’s symbol. The player you invite may either ally with you or decline. If they decline, nothing happens and you are on your own for this turn. If they join you, they are considered your Ally for this turn, and for this turn only. During this turn, you may use their special alliance ability, marked with a knot on their Faction card. They may not use your special alliance ability.

You can only be allied with 1 other player. When your turn ends, the alliance ends as well. However, your former Ally may refresh the alliance on their turn, and so may you again on your next turn, effectively prolonging the alliance. However, in game terms, in between your turns, the alliance does not exist.


Perhaps Heiko will see this and give a definite ruling.
 
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Seems really unthematic not to be able to use your own alliance powers.

Edit: Examples: the Fremen are the ONLY faction that can't use Worm Riding? The Harkonnen are the ONLY faction that can't use Infiltration. Seems almost backwards.
 
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"[A] Chair of the CHOAM - At the end of your turn, for every 1 unit...increase your spice reserve by 2. These may be spent like regular spice on your turn. You may give of those to your Ally on their turn."

Unless Corrino is the exception, the wording here suggests that Corrino can use their own spice reserves, thus implying that Factions can use their own "alliance" abilities.

Also, "Each Faction has a set of Special Abilities..." which is a pretty thin argument, I'll admit.


Just musing until an official ruling...
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aram12 wrote:
"[A] Chair of the CHOAM - At the end of your turn, for every 1 unit...increase your spice reserve by 2. These may be spent like regular spice on your turn. You may give of those to your Ally on their turn."

Unless Corrino is the exception, the wording here suggests that Corrino can use their own spice reserves, thus implying that Factions can use their own "alliance" abilities.

Also, "Each Faction has a set of Special Abilities..." which is a pretty thin argument, I'll admit.


Just musing until an official ruling...

Good point. It all seems to lead to that conclusion.
 
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Rules - Page 5 - Factions wrote:
Each Faction has a set of Special Abilities which supersede any rules mentioned above. Most Factions have one special alliance ability (marked with an [A] below and with a knot icon on the Faction cards) that may be used by the active player during the turn they are allied to this Faction. Remember that each alliance ends at the end of the active players turn. Setup occurs in the order the Factions are listed below.

This seems to point to you're not able to use your own Ally power.

I'd love to have a ruling on this before my next boardgame meetup.
 
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ChillusMaximus wrote:
XPartisanX wrote:
Under supplies is written "in each of the 6 factions" I guess it should be 8, right?
I think not because two of the factions have a different troop supply. Corrino have 8 small and 4 large. Fremen have 8 large.

XPartisanX wrote:

Under Kanly it is written : Using Crysknife you may not remove a token belonging to the player holding the Shield token" Should it be troop or did i miss something?
Yes, you are correct. I think it's a typo.
Correct on both accounts.

ChillusMaximus wrote:
XPartisanX wrote:

Move Troops: Can you ally choose between your target region and the polar sink, or does he have to take the same region you did?
It says you can always choose the Polar Sink, so I guess that goes for your ally as well.
You may always pick the Polar Sink as your target Region, irrespective of what you rolled on the Region Die. Once you have chosen a target Region, you may only move Troops to that target Region, you may not switch during your turn and move some Troops to your "regular" target Region and some to the Polar Sink. Only the active player decides which Region will be the target Region on his turn, and all Troops moved during his turn may only move to the target Region.

So: Your Ally may only move Troops to the Region you have picked to be the target Region this turn. This Region can be the Polar Sink.

ChillusMaximus wrote:
XPartisanX wrote:

A big question: Can you use your Ally ability by yourself, or is it impossible for you to take advantage of that. Example: can Atreides ever use honourable duel?
No, you can never use your ally power, only your allies.
You can use your own alliance ability (marked [A] or with a knot symbol) yourself as well. This is indeed not very clear from the rules, very sorry for that.
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Thanks Heiko.
 
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Omg, I can't get my head around this...I can't figure out the answer...

So here's my question so I can be clear...

Can a given faction use their own "Special Alliance Ability" marked by a knot on their own faction card? Eg Corrino's CHOAM Spice ability?

So it's either

1.

A faction can use all abilities listed on their faction card, and in addition, if allied with someone, the "Special Alliance Ability" on their ally's card.

OR

2.

A faction may use any ability listed on it's faction card NOT preceded by a Knot, and in addition, if allied with someone, the "Special Alliance Ability" on their ally's card.


 
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aram12 wrote:
So it's either

1. A faction can use all abilities listed on their faction card, and in addition, if allied with someone, the "Special Alliance Ability" on their ally's card.

OR

2. A faction may use any ability listed on it's faction card NOT preceded by a Knot, and in addition, if allied with someone, the "Special Alliance Ability" on their ally's card.
Answer 1 is correct. I edited my answer above, something got mixed up with the quoting.
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Np.

My brain nearly exploded from your answer. Paradox!

While I've got your ear, is there a thematic reason that the Baron is the only leader that doesn't start on it's faction's card during setup?
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aram12 wrote:
is there a thematic reason that the Baron is the only leader that doesn't start on it's faction's card during setup?
He's away on a holiday trip with Feyd and his boys.

Nah, it's just for balance reasons.
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