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Subject: Game 2 - Terrorists 2, Good guys 0 rss

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Joe Maiz
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So- our weekly gaming group met up at the FLGS (Allthingsfun) once again and we set off to get another game of Homeland in.

* Nick, Mike, Joe and Myself. Of the 4 of us, only Joe was the new guy. I walked him thru the basics and we setup the game and started.

I got the political agenda, so I knew that some of the threats would slide thru, but wanted to eliminate the impact 3 cards from the start. I also knew there was a good chance that we had a terrorist too.

Early on, the threats were low and only one at severe. It gave everyone a chance to get settled into cards and start getting some asests and such. I found Carrie from the first turn, so I then stuck to recruiting agents after that. It was too late, but I did use an agent on a impact 3 to find it was a diversion plot everyone played into. We won it, but since the diversion gives 0 impact, it was a fail on our part.

Everyone seems to play straight, but I had a hunch that Nick or Joe was a terrorist. Mike found the VP on turn 2, so he started recruiting soldiers after that. His ability nuked a Nasir /3 impact card right after it spawned, so that was a win and I knew Mike was a CIA guy. Good guys got 2 more 2 impact plots scored, but then it got bad.

Turn 5 had 3 severe plots and 5 critical, making almost a full row of criticals and the 2 underneath it - so game end was near. When Nick recruited another asset and did not use them to help one of his agendas, I was on to him. I asked Joe to use his asset (He exposes a person when you use an agent) on Nick, the game was up for him - he had Brody and a CIA drone guy turned down. I wasnt sure why he didnt keep Brody up, so that was my tipoff he was a badguy, but the damage came in another way...turn order.

On round 4 I was first to go, then we reshuffled the turn deck and I was first again. at that point I could not react to Nick when he sabotaged one of my plots. I hinted to Mike (who went 2nd) to beef up one of my 2 impact plots to help it out because I thought it was critical to keep alive for the good guys. Nick added a card to one of my plots that I knew was solid and added another card to someone elses 2 plot. When he added that last card to my 2 impact plot, I new we were going to loose. I told Joe (who went last) to add blue cards to the same ones, but the Intel deck was not kind and said he only got 1 1blue card. At that point, we had 5 severe plot about to flip:

1st - went good: got 2 points for Joe, but it took the group to convince Nick to use Brody to help. I was kinda overkill, but we needed those points thinking we were in the clear.
2nd- went bad; terrorists had 7 points on the track
3rd- went bad again. One of the two plots nick added to made it a tie, even w/ Carrie and an agent. What was worst was the gold card added was +1 impact, so now we were at 10 & screwed because...
4th was the same - another tie. Nick added a card to make it tied up for my abilities. Terrorists win.

Game 2 was better in that we had:
* more table talk - We used the rules of 'a few' 'alot' ' very bad' ' solid'... instead of numbers, so that was nice.
* Coordinated efforts: When the first player can place his case file on a case early, more players can add to it faster and help it out.
* More active assets: Carrie is awesome; the VP is excellent too - both combo up for some nice work.

Notes into game 3:
* Spending 3 tokens on an asset is a good investment early. Most are the 2-3 point range and the benefits are excellent thru the game.
* Watch the turn order and who goes where. We had several misplays of placing the 1st intel card under the same case that was selected. Remind players that you need to do them in order and have to play 2 intel cards.
* Use Assets on impace 3 plots - finding a diversion early is nice. Then you can either drone it or save the Blue 4s and 5s on something else.
* When adding agents?soldiers, place them in orientation to the player - then you remember who placed them on the cards.
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David Folksman
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Thanks for the review!

Quote:
* Watch the turn order and who goes where. We had several misplays of placing the 1st intel card under the same case that was selected. Remind players that you need to do them in order and have to play 2 intel cards.


Can you explain this please?
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Joe Maiz
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when you play intel cards the 1st card MUST be played under someone elses case card... THEN you can play a 2nd card under yours or another one if you choose.

 
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Cameron McKenzie
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This doesn't usually matter unless you are only playing one card for some reason.

Our first game (6 players) was a narrow agency win (the out card was political opportunist). We all figured out the mole and the opportunist was obvious.

Overall I think the game will be more fun with 4 or 5 - more tension and easier to track things. 6 just seemed like way too much chaos.
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Rob White
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MasterDinadan wrote:
This doesn't usually matter unless you are only playing one card for some reason.

Our first game (6 players) was a narrow agency win (the out card was political opportunist). We all figured out the mole and the opportunist was obvious.

Overall I think the game will be more fun with 4 or 5 - more tension and easier to track things. 6 just seemed like way too much chaos.


I agree with Cameron. First two games for me where 5 and 6 players. Last night I tried 4-player and liked it more. Less time between your turns and fewer people to consider. It's a cool game, for sure.
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Kwijiboe
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MasterDinadan wrote:
This doesn't usually matter unless you are only playing one card for some reason.

Our first game (6 players) was a narrow agency win (the out card was political opportunist). We all figured out the mole and the opportunist was obvious.

Overall I think the game will be more fun with 4 or 5 - more tension and easier to track things. 6 just seemed like way too much chaos.


Agreed, the sweet spot for this game is 4-5 players.

With 6 players the game is much more volatile; if you have even one person that takes too long on his turn, you start to forget what players did before and after that player's turn.

Had a cell-phone player ruin a 6 player game last week. (But they ruin every game, don't they?)
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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I wonder if the game would work (and keep people more engaged) if we took turns on claim case lead and playing Intel, but had people simultaneously do the other stuff.
 
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Benji
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MasterDinadan wrote:
I wonder if the game would work (and keep people more engaged) if we took turns on claim case lead and playing Intel, but had people simultaneously do the other stuff.


I don't think that would work. One thing that may get overlooked is that during your turn, you don't have to do the mandatory actions before the optional ones. The rules clearly state that the optional actions can be done at any time during your turn, so you could use an agent to inspect a plot, maybe trigger an asset by placing that agent, giving you additional intel cards, then play your two intel cards (into claimed cases) and claim a new case. Always plaing the two mandatory actions first is not always the best possible order.
 
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Dana R.
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MasterDinadan wrote:
I wonder if the game would work (and keep people more engaged) if we took turns on claim case lead and playing Intel, but had people simultaneously do the other stuff.


Definitely wouldn't work if for no other reason than there could be a traitor in the room and you want to watch carefully how others play.
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Benji
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Slabcity wrote:
MasterDinadan wrote:
I wonder if the game would work (and keep people more engaged) if we took turns on claim case lead and playing Intel, but had people simultaneously do the other stuff.


Definitely wouldn't work if for no other reason than there could be a traitor in the room and you want to watch carefully how others play.


So true. Besides my above-mentioned "mechanical" problem, you'd actually miss out on the main part of the game: trying to find out the roles of the other players through their actions...
 
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