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Subject: New Rulings from HiG & The Big Box rss

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Matthew Harper
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Hi everyone

I've been a bit out of circulation for the last few months, so I don't know if this is old hat. But I've been speaking to HiG about a couple of rules questions that arose ages ago, and learned that the Big Box not only includes a summary of the rules, but new rules. Is that really news to the geeks here, and could someone point me to the relevant threads if it's already been discussed?

Anyway on to the correspondence (translated from German). I asked the following two questions:

mjharper wrote:
First: if the pig and builder count as followers, can they block other followers from being deployed to features? For example, if blue has a knight and a builder in a city, and the knight is somehow removed, does that mean that blue still 'occupies' the city, because the builder is still there (even though the builder doesn't count towards the majority)? Do all players (including blue) have to indirectly build onto the city, just as they would if they were trying to capture a city in which someone else already had the majority? Or can a knight simply be deployed there, as if the city was empty? In other words, although it's clear that builders and pigs don't count towards the majority, it isn't clear what role they play in the occupation of a city.

Secondly, can the builder and pig be moved to the City of Carcassonne? Naturally the pig could only be placed on the market, but still: is it possible?

The reply:

HiG wrote:
Builders and pigs don't block either normal followers or other builders and pigs during deployment. And neither count towards the majority. (You were right, Aldaron - Matt)

'Builders and pigs are followers' refers to only one thing in terms of deployment. Only one follower (e.g. knight OR builder) can be deployed each turn, not one follower and, independently of that, a builder.
It also refers to removal by a princess or a tower. In this case it means that builders and pigs (like other followers) can be removed.

But now it gets complicated…

At the moment there are really two sets of rules that don't work together. In the newest rules we defined the builder and pig as 'special figures' that can no longer stand alone. So when the last related follower is removed, the pig and builder are automatically returned to the player.
Builders and pigs can also no longer be removed by towers or princesses.

The newest rules are at the moment only in the BigBox; the normal games only have the old rules at the moment.

So I wrote back:

mjharper wrote:
Thanks for the info. Does that mean that the BigBox rules are a kind of 4th Edition? Are there any other new rules we should be aware of?

I've got two other questions, though:

1) I would expect that the new rules for the builder and pig also apply when they're eaten by the dragon - is that true?

2) How do the new rules affect my second question in my original mail - can builders and the pig be moved to the City of Carcassonne?

The second reply:

HiG wrote:
Altogether we adapted a couple of rules.
The princess, for example, MUST remove ANOTHER's follower or your OWN.
With the tower, players CAN capture ANOTHER's follower.
- now in both cases: MUST and OWN or ANOTHER

Otherwise the most important change is with the builder.

To your questions:
1) Yes. Whenever the last follower (big or small) is removed from a feature in which the player has a builder or a pig, the builder and the pig are returned to the player.

2) I forgot to answer that! According to the old rules it was quite possible. But no one thought of doing so. With the newest rules it's no longer possible, because the pig and builder are not followers any more.

There's a download to the new rules (in German) here: http://www.hans-im-glueck.de/downloads/regel_bigbox.pdf

And the dragon still does eat the builders and pigs!

So, I'm really sorry if I've just been out of the loop for too long, and you all knew this already. But if not, the new rules seem like quite a shift, at least in details, which is what geeks are into.

And do we need a translation of the whole BigBox rule set?

- Matt
 
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Quote:
And do we need a translation of the whole BigBox rule set?


yes, please
 
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Matthew Harper
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Just a quick clarification of the rules for the princess - according to the new rules she CAN remove one follower from the city in which she is placed - and that follower may be big or small. A couple of small changes there.

And towers are specifically allowed to 'capture' the player's own followers - they come straight back to the player.

I have a feeling that the second reply from HiG is in error - as far as I can see, the rules for both towers and princesses are now that they CAN remove a follower, with someone else's or their own, rather than MUST.

But that's all that seems to be different…
 
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Barry Figgins
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Yeah, this is leaving me more confused than when I started. I'm surprised to hear him say that nobody's ever tried putting a pig or builder in Carcassonne city - I won a devastating victory in one game by placing my pig in Carc city, which allowed me to have it jump out at the end of the game and improve my biggest farm. Now, I can't see any use for placing the builder in Carcassone City...unless you're out of other meeples, and you really need to move the Count.
 
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brian
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beri wrote:
I'm surprised to hear him say that nobody's ever tried putting a pig or builder in Carcassonne city.
I think they meant when they wrote the rules originally. They had made that comment previously through Matt's website.

I am also confused by the confusion. It always stated the princess MUST remove a knight when the tile extended a city containing knights - even if you were the only one with the knight. The Tower always allowed you the option to capture or not. Now they are saying you MUST capture it with a tower. And if you "must" capture your own follower from a tower, then you just get the meeple back into your supply.

Is the confusion coming from the fact that the German rules are different than what they posted above? It seems by their language (and what to do with your own captured meeples) would tend to lean towards their statements here being correct - that you MUST capture instead of May capture.
 
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Matthew Harper
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Actually, I think that the confusion about MAY and MUST is in the email I received from HiG. Georg was saying that they've standardised the procedure, and but I think he described the standardisation in the wrong way. As I added in my second post above, the new rules in the BigBox now say that the princess MAY remove a knight - and this is the rule that has changed. The princess now behaves like a tower, and not vice versa, as the email from Georg suggested.

Maybe I should write back and check that point again…
 
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James Searles
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Hey, I've also been out of the loop for a while but I was just wondering if you could translate the whole Big Box rules so we can look for differences.
 
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Matthew Harper
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I'll look into it… most of the rules are the same, in German, so it's a case of looking for differences. Bear in mind that there's eleven pages of rules, though… that's gonna take some translatin'… Better get to it, then.

Brb ;-)
 
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Matthew Harper
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Right, I've started on the translation - much to do. There's a PDF of the first two pages available at http://homepage.mac.com/mjharper/BigBoxTranslation.pdf No significant rule changes in there - I'll highlight any I come across - but any feedback and advice would be appreciated.

I was thinking that it might be a good time to try making an compendium of rules and FAQ, something like that, using the BigBox as a basis…
 
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James Searles
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I think using the BigBox rules as the basis for a compendium is a great idea..

Also, I hope you don't mind byt I nominated you as the person to contact Jay Tummulson about our questions regarding the GQ expansion..
 
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Matthew Harper
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Er, been reading about that… Isn't the GQ expansion just a new set of tiles? As far as I could gather from the forums, there don't seem to be any questions… And I don't think it'll ever get to Germany. Oh well.
 
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Matthew Harper
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I've finished translating the basic rules, and posted latest pdf online at the same address as before. It includes a table of contents and endnotes, pointing out changes to previous editions and in one case including an example from the 2005 rules which didn't make it into the Big Box rules. The pdf is 1.2MB - I'll compress it properly later.

As before, any feedback would be appreciated…
 
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James Searles
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Excellent! Are you still updating your blogspot?

Also, I'd be willing to trade an extra GQ for a Die Katherer.
 
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Matthew Harper
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Yeah, the site is still updated, although I'm in the process of moving it - not least because I'll have to completely rebuild it when HiG finish updating their FAQ site.

I don 't have a spare copy of The Cathars, sorry, other wise that would be cool (note to self - next time there's a limited print of tiles, buy several!)
 
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Mike LeDuc
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If I have some time over the next week, I'll cross check your PDF against the actual US BigBox ruleset and let you know what I discover.
 
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Mike LeDuc
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I just looked over the PDF quickly... and it looks pretty much the same except for one big thing... 3 points per city a farmer supplies, vs 4 points for the US version.

I'm like 98% sure it was 4 points per city.


Ah found another one (in looking at the other past rule thread discussions)
A 2 segment city is only worth 2 points... not the adjusted 4.

Again, I'll check against my actual copy of the rules over the next couple of days.
 
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Matthew Harper
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@ducker

Thanks!

I'll keep doing my translation, but it would be really helpful if you could let us know the following:

- Do the rules say that princesses must remove a follower (old) or may (new)? - Princess and Dragon.
- Do they say that pigs and builders are followers (old) or are not followers (new)? - Traders and Builders
- Do the rules say that followers on towers can (HiG) or cannot (RGG) be taken prisoner? - The Tower
- Do they say that 'small cities' score two points (old) or four points (new)? - Basic Game
(We already know from what you said that the farming rules in the RGG translation of the Big Box are the still the first edition)

As far as I know (so far) those are the principal differences. I'm curious to know which if any have changed in the RGG translation - did they just compile the old rules or did they update anything at all? Shame if they didn't - would have been the perfect opportunity.

Just what we need: not only are there three sets of farming rules, a mistranslation of a rule for The Tower, and the question of small cities, but it looks like we might now have to add Big Box (HiG version) and Big Box (RGG version) to the list of rules variations.

Oh, when will it end?! cry

[edit - Just seen your addition about small cities. My guess is that RGG just threw together all their old rules translations, and didn't even look at the updated rules that HiG had developed.]
 
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Mike LeDuc
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As I just tried Princess and Dragon this past friday I can safely say that it reads: "you MUST remove 1 follower."

I can check the other rules later... but so far it's 3/3 on the "old rules," and I'd wager you're right... they just went with the old set.
 
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Matthew Harper
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Thanks… that helps a great deal. I'm trying to highlight whatever changes I find in the text so that we geeks out there can easily identify what's new and what's not. And part of that must be pointing out differences from even the RGG edition of the same collection.

I think RGG believe that it's better to leave the rules unchanged for the sake of consistency, but HiG update the rules frequently, to simplify them or improve integration with new expansions (the Big Box has 4 expansions, and there are 5 other mini-expansions, or 6 if you include the current GQ tile set). So you end up with a situation where whenever a new expansion comes out, RGG translate it, then correct it to make it backwards-compatible with the out-of-date rules that they haven't updated…
 
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Doug Orleans
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mjharper wrote:
I think RGG believe that it's better to leave the rules unchanged for the sake of consistency


Personally I think the RGG rules make for a better game, too. That's the ruleset that won the Spiel des Jahres, after all!
 
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Matthew Harper
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DougOrleans wrote:
mjharper wrote:
I think RGG believe that it's better to leave the rules unchanged for the sake of consistency


Personally I think the RGG rules make for a better game, too. That's the ruleset that won the Spiel des Jahres, after all!

Well, I can see that it might be possible to argue that the RGG rules for the basic game might be 'better', but I find it difficult to see how one can argue that the game as a whole - all 9/10 expansions - is better for using the RGG rules, when every expansion released by RGG has to be 'corrected'. You might be able to argue that it is better to play the game as it was originally meant to be played, but then that is true for the expansions too - they were meant to be played with the later rules, and HiG sometimes adjusts them (or rather, simplifies them) to make the all the expansions fit together better.

I don't want to start a whole 'which is better debate', but no matter how much one thinks that the original RGG rules are better, it must be possible to concede that they weren't designed to be played with multiple combinations of expansions, and that unforeseen difficulties may arise. Not least when RGG introduces new rules through mistranslation…
 
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Eric Weingarten

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I very recently got a copy of the Big Box version of this game for my birthday. It's the RGG release, of course, and now that I've had a chance to sit down and read through the rules, here's what I've found:

First of all, "small" cities score only two points.

In your translation of the German version, the "small city" example on the bottom of page 5 says "RED scores 4 points." In my manual, it reads "Red earns 2 points (exception: a 2 tile city does NOT get 2 points per tile)"

That's the only reference the manual makes to the exception.

Additionally, they're still using the old farming rules: 4 points per city.

On the other hand, a lot of rules seem to fit the "new" list. A couple of quotes from the instructions:

"The pig is not counted for determining which player feeds a city. It is not a follower!"

"The builder does not count as a follower for determining follower majority on a road or city."

So apparently neither the pig nor the builder is a follower.

Also, even though this is the RGG version of the game, the rules regarding a follower on a tower state "This follower remains on the tower until the end of the game, unless it is removed by the dragon *or is taken prisoner by another player when he places a tower piece on another tower.*"

Finally, the section regarding princesses only has two things to say regarding princesses removing followers:

"If [a player] places the [princess] tile so that it adds to a city with one or more knights, he must return one of those knights to its player [...] If he places the tile so that it adds to an empty city, or only starts a new city, he may place a follower (or other figure) in the normal ways."

--So a princess MUST return a knight if and only if placed in an occupied city. I guess that corresponds with the old rules?

And yes, the dragons still eat pigs and builders.

Doesn't look like they've changed much, really, although there have certainly been a few refinements.
 
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Matthew Harper
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Little My wrote:
On the other hand, a lot of rules seem to fit the "new" list. A couple of quotes from the instructions:

"The pig is not counted for determining which player feeds a city. It is not a follower!"

"The builder does not count as a follower for determining follower majority on a road or city."

So apparently neither the pig nor the builder is a follower.

Also, even though this is the RGG version of the game, the rules regarding a follower on a tower state "This follower remains on the tower until the end of the game, unless it is removed by the dragon *or is taken prisoner by another player when he places a tower piece on another tower.*"

Finally, the section regarding princesses only has two things to say regarding princesses removing followers:

"If [a player] places the [princess] tile so that it adds to a city with one or more knights, he must return one of those knights to its player [...] If he places the tile so that it adds to an empty city, or only starts a new city, he may place a follower (or other figure) in the normal ways."

--So a princess MUST return a knight if and only if placed in an occupied city. I guess that corresponds with the old rules?

And yes, the dragons still eat pigs and builders.

Doesn't look like they've changed much, really, although there have certainly been a few refinements.

Thanks for that. You're right: the builder and pig aren't considered to be followers here, and that corresponds to the new HiG rules. The interesting thing is, however, that the sentence 'It is not a follower!' doesn't occur at that point in the German. Tell me: do the RGG Big Box rules contain a taxonomy at the very end as well? In the HiG rules, it's there that the rule is most clearly stated.

The tower ruling seems to correct the mistranslation in the original Tower rules, which makes sense.

But then, why wouldn't they adjust the rule for the princess if they changed the rules for pigs, builders and towers? That's a real hodgepodge.

But thanks a lot. I'll be able to point out the differences much more clearly now.
 
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Eric Weingarten

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Yeah...I'd forgotten to mention, but on the back of the manual it also says quite clearly that the pigs and builders aren't followers. That's in the "Game Figures" section next to the "Special figures" heading.
 
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Matthew Harper
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Took a while (been busy) but I've finished the translation of the basic game, Inns and Cathedrals and Traders and Builders. I've moved the footnotes to the end of each section, so it should be easy to make print-outs of exactly what you want - the notes for I & C come immediately after the rules for that expansion, and so on.

The file is up at the same link as before (http://homepage.mac.com/mjharper/BigBoxTranslation.pdf) and is currently 1.7 MB.

Proofreading/comments appreciated…
 
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