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Subject: Double Speed Ships - Too strong? rss

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Jonathan Franklin
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We have played a fair number of times and there is always a race for the double speed ship. Does everyone race for this tile?

Any thoughts on whether it needs to be tweaked?

We are trying a new building tile that gives the player two ships for the price of one (for 2 player games only).

Thanks.
 
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Scott Russell
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Clarkston
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I think it is overpowered. I'd still be interested if it only multiplied speed by 150%
 
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Brent Mair
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Roy
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The double speed ships are always the first two buildings taken when we play. And usually lead to the win.
 
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Stven Carlberg
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Decatur
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Personally, I don't think the double-speed power is too great for what it costs and what you give up to get it. Obviously it's a nice thing to have, but it's not essential.

Of course, I've only played the game with four.
 
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Tejas Mistry
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Sammamish
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I've played the game several times with 3 or 4 players.
Previously I always chose the "Double ship movement" tile as the first tile as I found it very helpful/powerful.

However recently I played the game several times with some strong players and surprisingly they chose the "Fire protection" or "Pirate protection" first, and actually beat me often.
So I've started considering and learning to strategize without the double-ships and it seems workable. You have to be careful to dedicate yourself to your strategy (if you're going for land VPs, commit mostly to that).

I've played one 2player game and yes, found it too powerful for that and we considered making it 150% movement instead of double.
 
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Roderick Plain
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We used to play this game a lot long time ago (3 ppl). If a player takes the fire and pirate protection first, he usually wins 80% of the time. He only needs 2 or 3 voyages (going for tobacco/spices posts or trade agreements, doesn't matter), and must commit totally to win by city buildings, merchant buildings and money. Armed with 1 or 2 posts/trade agreements, and helped by the joker roll, a little exchange (without any risk because of his protection), and the free resources roll during the game, he usually gets enough spices and tobacco to beat sooner the ones who invest in sailing derived VPs (4 posts and/or 3 trade agreements).

Never, ever, let a single player get both protection tiles. If another takes the fire protection first, try to get the protection from pirates (even before the ship speed tile), and commit to victory by sailing.
 
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Alan Kwan
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I play mmostly two-player, and I get the ship speed only sometimes. The point is that, you get one tile per ship, and ship speed only allows you to get it faster, but does not give you more tiles. Getting the tiles faster is not always useful. In the early game, you need to get the basic resources to build ships and people, so getting resource islands very quickly doesn't help much. In fact, it sometimes even helps to get a tile later, after seeing what number has been rolled repeatedly, so that you can put the island on that number to avoid getting more of that redundant resource. And getting trade treaties early make little difference because you have little money to buy stuff.

My first choice is usually an income booster. I get the ship speed only if all the tiles near the start are bad, so that everyone is sailing very far to get tiles. in such case, I need ship speed because I cannot build a new ship if I have two ships out.
 
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Alan Kwan
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grandslam wrote:

We are trying a new building tile that gives the player two ships for the price of one (for 2 player games only).


No need to try. Such building is 10 times as strong as the Shipyard, and 7 times or so as strong as any other building.

Alan Kwan wrote:
In the early game, you need to get the basic resources to build ships and people, so getting resource islands very quickly doesn't help much.

In the late game, in certain situations the Shipyard can help you win several turns faster. But in most situations a sales-bonus building can help you win several turns faster, or allow you to buy your ship earlier to accelerate the wait for it to find the last VP.
 
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Jonathan Franklin
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Alan,

Agreed the EV of the improved efficiency shipyard was way too high.
1 
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LC
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My wife and I played this quite a bit. In the beginning, we felt that whoever got the x2 ship would win. But play it a bit more. There is a lot more strategy to it. Now we almost never pick the x2 ship because there are several superior strategies that usually beat the x2 ship strategy.
 
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John Greensage
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Houston
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The game is well balanced, with a number of strong strategies besides fast ships that can be played competitively.

Fast ships are a solid strategy against good play only if utilized carefully. Using the fast ship to rapidly acquire tiles I see as generally losing to most well executed strategies in the game. To best utilize fast ships, an exploration mode is needed. Map the board. Look for a special tile (upgrade or 12 gold) as your first tile. Treasure money can displace insurance, an upgrade can yield an additional building choice sooner and a strong increase in the likelihood of getting all buildings before they are gone. Neither tile increases your disaster liability, which is very important in the initial game because money is so hard to generate.

The fire insurance is often the first pick and is in the running for the most powerful building. It directly supports the build strategy which can lead to three victory points (all buildings, 3 at level 4, and 30 gold via buildings that allow you to sell more effectively).

 
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Drake Storm
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I have only played a handful of times - mostly 4 player and once or twice 3 player.

I have never gone for the fast boats, and I have won over 50% of the games I played (all against people who have played the game more than me - they always go for the ships).

I also never get fire protection or pirate protection unless there is nothing else useful to get.

So what does that leave? All the tiles that give a bonus when selling goods. Any or all of them are good.

Add in a little luck and you are good to go.

 
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Emilio Clementi
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Totally Agree... the double speed card is too strong.

Try switching the benefit to only moving ONE extra square in ONE of your ships... still will be an interesting card but won't be a card that decides so much the result of the game.

Designers can be wrong sometimes... even Teuber (I'm a big fun of him by the way).

 
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Steve Oliver
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The double speed ship looked great my first few games...until I was crushed by someone who went for the bonus goods. The ship is a ruse, a distraction, a taunt! Stay away from it!

And in any case, it certainly doesn't need to be changed by a house rule.
 
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James Faulkner
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I don't think the speedy ship tiles are over-powered.
They obviously speed up your exploration and give you a chance to see more island tiles before selecting one. However, you still get just 1 island tile for the cost of your ship.
Not going to be my first choice of building to take.
 
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Douglas Kaufman
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Baltimore
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If one were to modify the ship building, I was thinking of having the building make it so that peeking at tiles didn't cost a movement point. So you'd still only go four squares through empty ocean, but when you got to the islands you could peek at a large number of them if you wished.

FWIW.
 
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Stephen Stewart
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eclementi wrote:
Totally Agree... the double speed card is too strong.

Try switching the benefit to only moving ONE extra square in ONE of your ships... still will be an interesting card but won't be a card that decides so much the result of the game.

Designers can be wrong sometimes... even Teuber (I'm a big fun of him by the way).



ONE extra square??? are you kidding? That would be close to worthless compared to the other tiles to choose from!!

MAYBE, Just Maybe, allow the X2 ship to discover without a cost. This way, they'll travel out of the gate just as fast, but have the advantage of not paying search costs.

Yeah, and fire protection is the best. MY first game I lost 6 buildings due to fire!!!!! Right after I built them!!!

 
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Brad Wild
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I don't think double speed is overrated at all. I very rarely take it and I win more than half the games (4p games) I play (that's not to say I'm really good, it is more to say I'm the best in my group at it). We usually value all of the buildings except for the one that gives you 2 goods on a YoP around the same. They all counter each other.

For example, if if first person to take a building takes the tobacco arbitrage building (my personal favorite), other players should take 2x speed to find tobacco tiles to deny that player, or take the steal a resource building to take their spices so they can't upgrade to a 4.
 
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