Norbert Chan
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Wow, so this is what you get for 100 pieces of gold.
Don taught the rules to Gary who had played Race for the Galaxy before, and we were off.

Game 1: Craig was Old Earth with Space Piracy, Don was Alpha Centauri with Mining Industry, Trevor was Epislon Eradini with Biological Adaptation, Gary was Doomed World with Destroyed Colony and I was New Sparta with Galactic Religion. Last week, Trevor had won the last 2 games in a row, with cheap blue/brown planets and cheap developments, blitzing to a tableau of 12 and shutting the game down before anyone could get an engine going. But Gary with Doomed World had an $8 start, and was able to parlay that to more dice with a 2 gray world for 2 red dice, and a brown planet. This allowed Gary to get enough dice for a 6 planet and a free trade association (but no blue planets!), but big enough of a tableau for a win by the newbie.

Gary 24 (24 tableau),
Trevor 21 (21 tableau),
Craig 21 (16 tableau, 5 consume),
Norbert 21 (16 tableau, 5 consume),
Don 17 (15 tableau, 2 consume).

Gary wins on his very first game.

Game 2: Craig was Separatist Colony with Destroyed Colony, Don was Alpah Centauri with Improved Reconnaisance, Trevor was Doomed World with Genetics Lab, Gary was New Sparta with Space Piracy and I was Damaged Alien Factory with Biological Adaptation. One of my first builds was the galactic investors which gives you $2 at the end of the develop phase. Now with the biological adaptation, all development abilities were cheaper by one. So my next build was the technology affinity which lets me reassign a die to the develop phase. The next building after that was the propaganda campaign which lets me assign 1 or 2 dice to the phase I select. Gary was having a cheap tableau with many 1 developments, and he had gotten out the galactic exchange, so I knew I didn’t have many turns to make something of my game. So I began exploring for a ‘6’ development, maybe find a galactic federation or something. I found new economy which gives 1 VP per non assign development. Well, that was okay, but after more exploring I found the galactic bankers which gives 1 VP per development. Just in time, using the technology affinity and propaganda campaign I was able to reassign 3 dice to develop and develop it in one turn, just when Gary ended the game. It was going to be tight on who won, but I prevailed by 1 pt.

Norbert 32 (26 tableau, 6 galactic bankers),
Gary 31 (26 tableau, 2 consume, 3 galactic exchange),
Don 23 (16 tableau, 7 consume),
Trevor 22 (18 tableau, 4 consume),
Craig 20 (15 tableau, 5 consume).

I got to reassign three dice to devlelop to build the galactic bankers before the game ended.

So it was the second game where a blitz approach failed to win.

Game 3: Craig was separatist colony with space piracy, Don was Epsilon Eradini with biological adaptation, Trevor was Earth’s Last Colony with Mining Industry, Gary was Doomed World with Galactic Religion and I was Alpha Centauri with Improved Reconnaissance. I had 2 starting brown planets, and eventually I got the rebel miners, my third brown planet. After some exploring I got the mining league which gives 2 VP per brown planet. Gary was doing the cheap blitz strategy again, so all I had to do was focus and bring out the mining league, which when built would be worth 12 VP to me. I built it in time, my only development the whole game before Gary ended the game with 12 buildings.

Norbert 35 (27 tableau, 2 consume, 6 mining league),
Don 28 (26 tableau, 2 consume),
Gary 21 (19 tableau, 2 consume),
Trevor 21 (15 tableau, 6 consume),
Craig 19 (19 tableau).

Building the mining league before the blitzer could end the game gave me 12 VPs.

At this point Craig was asking why people were ending the game prematurely to crown someone else the winner. The response was that if the game went longer the lead might become bigger and they felt the game was hopeless and ending it would give them a chance for the next game.

Game 4: Craig was old earth with biological adaptation, Don was Alpha Centauri with Alien Archaeology, Trevor was Doomed World with Consumer Markets, Gary was Separatist Colony with Improved Reconnaissance, and I was Damaged Alien Factory with Genetics Lab. This time it was Trevor who was blitzing with cheap worlds and cheap developments (none greater than a cost of 3). I had 3 blue planets down and finally found a free trade association (get VPs worth half of your blue planets). But the game was ending so fast I could not build it. On the other hand, Don had gotten the galactic bankers early and focused specifically on getting it out, despite not having a large dice pool. That was worth 16 pts and good enough for the win; in desperation, I called produce on the last turn, hoping the game wouldn’t end, which put me in last place.

Don 24 (19 tableau, 1 consume, 4 galactic bankers),
Craig 21 (21 tableau),
Trevor 19 (19 tableau),
Gary 15 (15 tableau),
Norbert 14 (9 tableau, 5 consume).

Don's first win.

Again, another game where the blitz strategy failed.

Game 5: Craig was Earth’s Last Colony with Destroyed Colony, Don was New Sparta with Improved Reconnaissance, Trevor was Damaged Alien Factory with Galactic Religion, Gary was Ancient Race with Consumer Markets, I was Old Earth with Alien Archaeology. Craig was able to build out an alien planet early, and continued to build more aliens. He had a development which give him an extra consume on alien and gene worlds, so his consumption was good as well. Starting with 2 gray worlds, it took me a while to get a couple blue and a green planet. I didn’t know what I wanted to be in life yet, until I found the galactic reserves (get to hold extra production on worlds), so I thought I could consume more than the others. Unfortunately, before I could get that started to consume, the game ended (not really by the blitz strategy as most people were at 10, 11 buildings) with Gary with his 12 building. Craig squeaked out a 1 pt win over me).

Craig 39 (29 tableau, 10 consume),
Norbert 38 (30 tableau, 5 consume, 3 galactic reserves),
Don 35 (28 tableau, 7 consume),
Gary 34 (26 tableau, 4 consume, 4 galactic exchange).
Trevor 30 (18 tableau, 12 consume).

Craig wins with alien tableau and good consmption worth an extra VP per good.

Game 6: Craig was Epsilon Eradini with biological adaptation, Don was Alpha Centauri with Galactic Religion, Trevor was Separatist Colony with Space Piracy, Gary was Damaged Alien Factory with Improved Reconnaissance, I was doomed world with Alien Archaeology. One of my first developments was the Alien Uplift team which lets you settle gene and alien planets for one less die. So I began exploring for gene and alien worlds. I found two gene worlds and got my dice pool larger. This time it was me who ended the game. I had a 3 gene world and a 6 alien world underneath it. So I needed 7 settle dice total (I had one settle dice left on before), and I rolled 6 settles that I put out those two buildings with a tableau of 12 buildings end the game.

Scores: Norbert 34 (31 tableau, 3 consume),
Gary 29 (29 tableau),
Craig (22 tableau, 2 consume, 4 galactic exchange),
Don 27 (24 tableau, 3 consume),
Trevor 18 (18 tableau).

I put out 9 pts worth of planets to shut the game down on the last turn.

Game 7: Craig left, but we continued 4 player. Don was ancient race with consumer markets, Trevor was separatist colony with biological adaptation, Gary was alpha centari with mining industry, and I was earth’s last colony with genetics lab. Trevor went with the blitz strategy, lots of 2 worlds and developments. I had 3 worlds out and was trying to consume to victory (ignoring a 6 development I had since I knew I would not have time to construct it), but Don squeaked out a 2 VP victory. He had enough small planets to consume, and his tableau was respectable.

Scores: Don 26 (17 tableau, 9 consume),
Norbert 24 (11 tableau, 13 consume),
Trevor 24 (24 tableau),
Gary 19 (17 tableau, 2 consume).

Don's second win.

Game 8: Don was Doomed World with galactic religion, Trevor was epsilon eradani with genetics lab, Gary was old earth with alien archaeology, and I was new Sparta with improved reconnaissance. Gary put down an alien research ship ( 5 cost development which gives him a white and yellow dice during the exploration phase). The turning point seemed to be when Trevor explored, Gary said thank you, since with the alien archaeology a yellow dice is worth $4 for scouting, and Gary made $6 for free that turn. Fairly soon, after that Gary put down the Galactic Federation. Don was having a decent game with blue planets and the free trade association. I had the galactic renaissance, and trying to consume as much as possible with 3 brown planets and a blue planet, but it was not quite enough. Gary had to big a tableau to be beaten.

Gary 47 (38 tableau, 3 consume, 6 galactic federation),
Don 45 (31 tableau, 11 consume, 3 free trade association),
Norbert 43 (22 tableau 16 consume, 5 galactic renaissance),
Trevor 26 (22 tableau, 4 consume).

Gary's large development tableau. The $6 when someone else explored gave him a big push.

Game 9: Don was damaged alien factory with mining industry, Trevor was earth’s last colony with destroyed colony, Gary was alpha centauri with consumer markets, and I was doomed world with biological adaptation. I got a brown planet out on the first turn, and it shipped (I was hoping to trade it a later round but I had a ship dice allocated), so I got 2 VP for it. So I thought I converted my doomed world advantage to 2 VP, and I was hoping to get a bigger push than that. Midgame I got a galactic federation, while Don got a galactic exchange, these 2 buildings allowed us to win. This was not an ideal game as Gary was blitzing to end it (and he finished last). Don and I ended up tying in score though. I had $5 and 4 dice in my cup and Don said he forgot about his dice and said, well, it's okay, you win then.

Scores: Norbert 32 (26 tableau, 2 consume, 4 galactic federation),
Don 32 (27 tableau, 5 galactic exchange),
Trevor 28 (19 tableau, 9 consume),
Gary 24 (24 tableau).

A tie between Don and I.

So most of the games were ended by a blitz strategy, but the blitzing person was unsuccessful. So what seemed to work for a couple games last week has been effectively thwarted.

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Chris Grable
United States
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I really love Roll so far it is a ton of fun but...that being said in our games the person that just builds fast and hits the game ending tile count has been the winner every time. To be fair, every game of Race ends about the same way if the blitzer is smart about what they are building. I just have never thought that either of these games are very well balanced from the multi-strategy aspect. They are fun, but they are fun for what they are.
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Sec Ret
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pirateclem wrote:
I really love Roll so far it is a ton of fun but...that being said in our games the person that just builds fast and hits the game ending tile count has been the winner every time. To be fair, every game of Race ends about the same way if the blitzer is smart about what they are building. I just have never thought that either of these games are very well balanced from the multi-strategy aspect. They are fun, but they are fun for what they are.

I think you're wrong on that to a degree. For inexperieced players a rush strategy might work well, but once you reckognize that that's what's going on (learning when/where the game is ending/heading is a learned skill in roll) one can quite easily counter it. Laying out 9-10 1/2 cost worlds will not give you many points. A decent 6+ will quite quickly rack up the points, and since the rusher must draw cheap tiles fron the bag, you have the chance to draw well matched ones in the mean time.
We don't see rushes very often in our games anymore and when we do it's a close call that usually goes either way.
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