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Subject: Teaching the game rss

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jonathan schleyer
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I just ordered the game and will have very little time to read the rules before teaching it to some friends at a party this weekend.

Do you have any suggestions as to what is the best way to teach the game to novices?
 
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marc lecours
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don't teach too much.

What needs explaining:

1. The roles: explain that there are 3 teams. Good guys win by killing the others. Bad guys win by killing the sheriff only. And the renegade wins by killing everybody but the sheriff then killing the sheriff last.

The renegade is the most complex role. Explain that the strategy of the renegade is to appear like a vice sheriff until late in the game then turn on the sheriff.

2. Next explain the range. Who can shoot who.

3. Then explain the number of lives. Bullets on the card.

4. Then explain that you can only normally play one Bang card per turn.

5. Explain the symbols on the cards. And distribute around the player aid (card)

6. Don't explain more.

7. Explain that you will now play two practice rounds before restarting and playing for real. Deal out the initial roles face down as usual. Sheriff turns over his card as usual. Deal out each players cards as usual.

8 . WHen it is a player's turn have them show their cards to everyone and suggest how to play the cards while explaining them. Do this once or twice around the table. This means pretty much all types of cards get seen.

9. NOw stop....Pick up all the role cards and all the cards.... then reshuffle and start for real.

have fun.
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Flying Arrow
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Does that work? Those symbols seem to hurt more than help. Can't they just make a language-dependent (English) version? I like the game, but I don't want to teach it to anyone else... so painful. Maybe I'll try that technique next time.
 
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marc lecours
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i have taught about 40 high school kids how to play bang. And the symbols do help. True english would be better. But the symbols are better than if it was only in Italian. Actually some of the kids have picked up a few italian words from the game.
 
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Nick Case
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Why not steal a march and take advantage of all the files and downloads available here on the Geek? If you need a 1 page rule summary try;

http://files.boardgamegeek.com/viewfile.php3?fileid=11042

This will give you a head start before the game is delivered.

There are several other useful items like card summaries which will allow new players to check things for themselves during the game.

In my experience, if you encounter a problem with a new game, the chances are the answer is already covered in a forum or if you need a new answer you will get a response the same day.
 
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Mark Campo
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do what itsays in the rules and take out some of the more complex cards like duel and indians and volcanic from the 1st draw pile shuffle them in once draw pile has been exhausted once...



 
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jonathan schleyer
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Thanks for all this great advice.
 
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David G.
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The "who wins" aspect an be confusing. I explain it this way:

* If the Sheriff (and potentially his Deputies) are the last one standing, then the Sheriff and Deputies win.

* If the Sheriff dies and there's any Outlaws alive, then the Outlaws win.

* If the Sheriff dies, and there are no Outlaws alive, then the Renegade wins. Unless there are two Renegades (I think this requires the Dodge City expansion). In that case, the two Renegades battle it out.

I also thoroughly explain that although anyone can claim to be whoever they want to be, they may not show anyone their role card. Unless of course they're the Sheriff.

I go over Bangs, and Misses, and Weapons and range, Beer, and maybe cover a few of the cards. I'll then say "there are a bunch of cards you may or may not come across. It's easiest just to show it to someone and ask them what the heck it does". Yeah, that means they're at a disadvantage, but I don't really think it's going to sway the game that much, and there are just too many cards to keep track of.

 
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Emiliano Sciarra
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That's the way I usually explain the rules.
1. The roles: Sheriff must kill Outlaws and Renegade as well; Deputies help him; Outlaws must kill the Sheriff and don't care of anybody else; finally the Renegade shifts sides until the final duel with the Sheriff. All roles are hidden, except the Sheriff, so you'll have to guess who is what according to what each one says (the game allows free talks among players, even open lies) and how each one plays.
2. The characters: One character each, the special ability (just mention it, without explaining), the life points and how they are shown.
3. The turn: begin with as many cards as your life points. Draw 2 cards, play as many cards from your hand as you want (exception: Bang!). Finally, end your turn and discard if you exceed your hand size limit.
4. The game engine: Bang! card, distance, Missed!. Losing a life point, regaining life points with Beer, killing a player.
5. Special cards: quickly browse through the deck and very briefly show how symbols help explaining the effect of Cat Balou or Panic or Barrel or Mustang/Appaloosa. Then go for the 6 special cards with the book symbol.
6. Final touches: while you shuffle the deck, remember the reward of 3 cards for killing an Outlaw, and the penalty for the Sheriff killing a Deputy. In the first turn, let each player read aloud the name and the special ability of his character: it is a good way to be sure that several game mechanics have been correctly understood.
During the explanation I always use the cards. For example, when explaining the roles, I put all of them face up. When I say "the Sheriff must kill the Outlaws", I flip face down the three Outlaws cards, and vice versa.
Explaining a game like Bang! is a lot more difficult than playing it, so don't worry: if you feel your audience is going to be confused, remember them this fact
 
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Glenn Russell
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I wouldn't even explain any of the cards with the book symbol, but just tell them that if they get a card, to ask about that specific card (or, alternately, look it up in the rules).
 
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