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Subject: First player advantage in the number of turns? rss

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François + Daphné
Canada
Saint-Hyacinthe
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We only played twice, using the suggested setups: Beginners and Friendly. We played it as a 2-player game.

Both times, the first player was the first to finish, and her opponent was sure to finish also, on his next turn.

We understand the need for a "sudden death" ending, and we do not like to lose by a large margin, but this is a little too close for our taste.

What is your experience? Are we too evenly matched? Is it the way things are in this game? Do we need to play more to "get it"?

Thank you for your opinion.
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Joshua Kuhlmann
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Huntington Beach
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The game tends to be very even (from my experience) so closeness in score is not a big surprise. You need to eke out small advantages each turn that end up providing you a game-winning advantage (while preventing your opponent from doing the same) without being a value idiot.

That said, the $4 player 2 receives should be a reasonable compensation, worth around a half-move. If player 2 starts with a card that can be scored for $4, he may even be better off (score it and take advantage of whatever ruling times gives you).

I would also note that Good Play involves a lot of jockeying with the timestream (again, in my experience). If you have an advantage, exploit it as much as possible -if not, change time so the other guy doesn't.

Tldr; try having p2 score first turn, and be aggressive with times.
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Bryan Doughty
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Two games is circumstantial. For quite awhile my two-player games seemed to usually end with the second player winning. After twenty-six games it has evened out some.
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Thomas Lajeunesse
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Hihihi... Stop that, I'm ticklish !
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Disclaimer : I played it only twice...

My first game was a very tight 2 player, but I don't remember who won.

My second game was also a 2 player, and the first player won while the second player had only 1 crown left 1 in time 3 (therefore 1 point away)

The 4 coins advantage has been nullified by the first play of the first player, who played the card giving him 9 coins and everybody else lose 5... arrrh
But it was something like : okay now situation is reversed, and I have 5 coins more than you had, but I also have 1 card less...

So, I'm not really sure of the importance of being first to play. I believe that the luck in cards drawn could be more significant. I think I'm going to record these games, number of players and who won, to see if something emerges...
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Robert Crawford
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So as others have said, close games tend to be common. I've played probably 25 or so games now, and the vast majority of the time, when a player wins, at least 1 other player would have won on his next turn.

Duncan wrote:
My second game was also a 2 player, and the first player won while the second player had only 1 crown left 1 in time 3 (therefore 1 point away)


In this situation, it seems likely that the second player made a major mistake. Scoring whatever cards he did that caused him to be 1 point away was most likely means that somewhere along the line he wasted a move and a card (unless he really needed to control Time IV). Had he instead made one of those scores a card that was just 1 crown higher for $4 more, then he may have won. Or to put it another way, if you need 9 points more to win, there's no real point in scoring a $20 for 8. You need 2 more scores to win no matter what, and you can get those 2 scores much more cheaply by scoring a 5 and a 4 (total cost $12).

Obviously there's exceptions, such as if you have Settlers or another way of scoring a single Crown. Or if you have enough money to score whatever you want, and $20 for 8 is just what you have in hand.
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Ryan Smith
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Duncan wrote:
The 4 coins advantage has been nullified by the first play of the first player, who played the card giving him 9 coins and everybody else lose 5... arrrh
But it was something like : okay now situation is reversed, and I have 5 coins more than you had, but I also have 1 card less...


This card (Tulip Stocks) does not strike me as a terribly strong first move for P1. You're just not getting the full benefit by draining $4 instead of $5. Why wouldn't you wait a couple turns until they have more money to steal? Or let them build up to a big score and then throw your wrench in? Stealing their money immediately only makes sense if you think they're going to spend that money immediately, probably by scoring a $4 card. But odds are they didn't even start with a $4 scoring card, and even if they did, they may or may not want to score it urgently.

Not to say it's a critical error or anything. I think it leaves you in OK shape, and of course if you really need that $9 right away, it might be the best move. But it's definitely not game-breaking, and as early cards go, it's a lot less impressive than a good Perpetual card.
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Thomas Lajeunesse
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I agree with that
 
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Alex Rockwell
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Lynnwood
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If you feel the $4 isnt enough for second player to be balanced, increase the amount of $ you give them.
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