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Gang of Four» Forums » Variants

Subject: 2 Player varient? rss

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Bob Marso
United States
Corvallis
Oregon
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I have never played this game but just watched a Days of Wonder
CD explaining and demonstrating the game. Notice they
have a 3 player version where you deal to a fictional
4th player.

Could you do the same thing and deal to two fictional players in a 2 player game?


Appreciate any comments from any who have perhaps tried or have opinions about the workability of a 2 player game.


Bob
 
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Gwen
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Done it a couple of times with 3 players, but it is kind of disappointing. I guess you could deal 2 dummy hands to allow playing with 2, but it won't be the same game anymore.

Gang of Four really is a 4 player game. It is all about handmanagement and keeping track of the cards. When there are 2 dummy hands, there is no way you can keep track of the cards that have not been played yet, since half of the cards are not even in the game.

If you are willing to try this game, I'd really suggest you give it a try with 4 players.

 
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Bob Marso
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Thank you for your reply. I do go to a friendly local
game store that makes it certainly do-able to play with
4, however I always love to hear about tweaks in multi-player
games.

I guess another option for a two player would be
for each player to play 2 hands.


I am definitely going to buy this game, sounds like fun!


Bob
 
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Sean Ross
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North Vancouver
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I asked a similar question last year (http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/658666). Pagat (www.pagat.com) lists two climbing games that have two player variants - Big Two and Tien Len - and Big Two is the direct ancestor of Gang of Four, so there may be some hope of a two player variant. I hadn't tried either of the other games, so I was asking opinions from anyone who had. There was surprisingly little response from the community. However, Larry Levy went beyond the call and actually designed his own two-player variant of The Bum Game (http://www.boardgamenews.com/index.php/boardgamenews/comment...). While a bit misnamed (the game is not really like Tichu), Larry's design seems promising. I've played three times and it seemed okay, but I'd like to play more to get a better feel for how well it works. You'll see in his design discussion some of the issues he was trying to address as he designed the game. These may be of benefit if you decide to try making your own two-player Gang of Four.

Good luck,
Sean
 
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Jonathan Kandell
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I don't think Go4 would work well, but Big Two (the original version of Go4) does work somewhat well for two. My wife and I play it frequently. With 13 cards a piece you lose a lot of the card counting (or, should I say, taking the lead becomes a probability rather than certainty), but the game still plays surprisingly well. For reasons I haven't yet figured out, the hands don't shed too rapidly like they do in two-person variations of Tien Den or Zhen Fen etc. I think this is because the poker combinations are rather restrictive compared with some of the other climbing games--none of those triple trio sequences. I like it even better when each person starts with a single joker to be used at their discretion: that evens out the luck of one person getting three of a kind and the other not (whereas with four people someone else usually has another three of a kind). If you're worried about the luck of not knowing the contents of the "widow" deck, just allow players to exchange any cards from their hands with the widow if they pass; and the discarded cards are left face up for everyone to see.
 
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