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Merchants of the Middle Ages» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Session Report rss

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Jeff Dougan
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My second game of the evening was Die Handler.

I've been told that the loading fees we established over the course of the game were extremely low, and somebody was laughing at the tendency to provide "bulk discounts".

Although the money bags provided an illusion of closeness, I think the game became a runaway during the 3rd and 4th wagon deliveries, when one person managed to play two of the three "delivery with bonus" cards, taking in 4200 coins from one of the sales and another 2000+ from the second. That only two people managed to acquire more than one courier card during the whole game did not improve my impression of this game's balance.

I might give this one more shot sometime, but it didn't ever seem like two of the four players had a fair shake.

Final placings: Rob, Jim, Gee, Jeff
 
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Hank Meyer
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Re:Session Report
jsdougan (#17701),
There are few games that have any realistic "balancing" mechanism if one or more players gain a lead via some semi-random event. The other players in your game could "up the ante" for the two who received extra $$$ for their deliveries in future rounds. Or, when making deals (as the Wagonmaster or client) consider the effects of the game cards and built a balancing element into the negociation. Our group played DH recently and some of the "wheeling and dealing" was pretty far reaching. For example:
Wagonmaster: 300 gold each to load or 200 plus 1/2 any bonus collected or 400 with a promise to a)move wagon(x) as rapidly as possible towards city(y) or b) vote to place or keep commodity (z) as high as possible on the buy-sell chart or c) split any card bonuses 75-25 or d) agree not to break an axle for (x) turns....there are, of course, numerous variations and one does have to keep track of a bunch of different options, which is why our group really likes DH, perhaps even more than Traders of Genoa. Both require consistent negociating by the players.
Our philosophy when playing either is, hey, it's just game and we can always play again. So get in there and make some deals; you never know what terms will be accepted.
 
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