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Subject: Farm confusion (again) rss

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Branko K.
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Hi y'all.

I have read a bunch of posts, reviews, official rules, unofficial rules, official addendums etc. and am still confused at some issues concerning farm scoring.

I have adapted to the farm-centric scoring, since it's much simpler. Basically I look at the farm, count the majority, then for the major player give points for every completed city. Next farm, repeat.

However, I am unsure how many points SHOULD I give per city. My rules say 4, online game gives 3, reviews here mention again 4, then in the official FAQ I read 3... which is it? I am talking about vanilla Carcassone, so no pigs/pig farms/goblins or whatnot.

I am currently inclined to 3-pointer, since it makes the farms less powerful. Still, I'd like to know, which is the current official ruling?
 
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Matthew Fischer
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I always play the three-point rule when using the revised farm scoring. It makes sense to me since some farms may be scored more than once. You don't want too many points awarded just on farms.
 
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Werner Bär
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baba44713 wrote:
I have adapted to the farm-centric scoring, since it's much simpler. Basically I look at the farm, count the majority, then for the major player give points for every completed city. Next farm, repeat.

So you use the 3rd edition scoring rules. In this version, each city gives 3 points.
 
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Mik Svellov
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You are probably confused because there are two conflicting sets of official rules: one for the original German versions (of which there have been 3!) and one for the English-language RGG version. (Conveniently forgetting all the other langaueg editions).

Rio Grande is still using the original rules, so if you have a copy from RGG then your rules are correct. The original way to score is more complex than the new German rules:

Each city is worth 4 points to the player(s) who has the most FARMERS on ANY field surrounding that city.

The current German rules have changed the scoring system so that each FARM is scoring 3 points per city adjacent to it, given to the player(s) who has the most Farmers on that Field. The score was lowered because each city is likely to be scored more than once.
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Mark K.
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Why does Rio Grande stick with the original ruling?
 
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Jay Tummelson
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To answer the question as to why we have kept the original rule:
as my customers are English speakers, I wanted all my customers,
both the early and later ones to have the same rules without the
confusion of unnecessary rule changes. Yes, I understand many
think the 3rd edition rules are "easier", but I do not think they
are better enough to add the confusion of different sets of
"official" English rules. Now, of course, many people live in
an internet world, where they have learned of the various different
German versions, and this, in part, reduces the value of my position.
However, there are still many people who have not learned of the
different German versions. It has been suggested that I include
these various German rules changes as variants in my rules and I
may do that in the future.

Jay
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Mark K.
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Thanks for the answer!
 
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Barry Figgins
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Farm-centric scoring, at least, has simplified the game immensely for me, especially when teaching it to new players.
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DAVID MERCER
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Incidentally, my wife and I tried 3rd ed. farm scoring recently and much prefer it over the 1st, so I recommend it.

We took a bit longer to succumb to 3rd ed. city scoring (two-tile cities score four instead of two), but having recently tried it, also think that is an improvement as well. So, for what it's worth, I recommend 3rd edition scoring wholeheartedly.
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DAVID MERCER
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dmercer wrote:
We took a bit longer to succumb to 3rd ed. city scoring (two-tile cities score four instead of two), but having recently tried it, also think that is an improvement as well.


The reasoning here is that if a small city is worth only two points, then it is never worth my completing a small city in an opponents farm, since my two points are offset by three points the enemy receives for the farm, for a net loss of one. As a result, having a farm with lots of farm "caps" was too lucrative, since you were guaranteed five points for each city: two when you completed it (since your opponent never will) and three at the end of the game.

Now when small cities are worth four points it will now net you +1 for completing such a city in an opponents farm, which may make it worthwhile.
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aethyr
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riogames wrote:
To answer the question as to why we have kept the original rule...
Jay


I might be the only person around here that likes the city-based scoring. I've played both ways, and I think it adds a bit more strategy in terms of late-game tile placement.

I also have never had any problems scoring, or teaching people how to score (find each completed city and count who has the most farmers touching it).
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Igor Livshits
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aethyr wrote:
riogames wrote:
To answer the question as to why we have kept the original rule...
Jay


I might be the only person around here that likes the city-based scoring. I've played both ways, and I think it adds a bit more strategy in terms of late-game tile placement.

I also have never had any problems scoring, or teaching people how to score (find each completed city and count who has the most farmers touching it).


I wholeheartedly agree, so you are not the only one!

Cheers, Igor
 
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Doug Orleans
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dmercer wrote:
The reasoning here is that if a small city is worth only two points, then it is never worth my completing a small city in an opponents farm, since my two points are offset by three points the enemy receives for the farm, for a net loss of one. As a result, having a farm with lots of farm "caps" was too lucrative, since you were guaranteed five points for each city: two when you completed it (since your opponent never will) and three at the end of the game.


This sort of makes sense in a 2-player game, but with more players, it's much too tempting to take a quick 2 points and give 3 (or 4) points to only one other player (especially if that player is in last)-- you're still gaining on the other players, with no meeple cost to yourself. If the small cities were worth 4 points, this would be impossible to turn down, and farms would become even more valuable because they'd have lots of 2-tile cities. (It would also become harder to complete other cities because the caps are being used up for the quickies.) If the idea is to reduce the "one big valuable farm" problem, then full points for 2-tile cities is counterproductive in a multi-player game.
 
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Barry Figgins
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I found that there was acceptable strategy with both methods - city-based and farm-based. Neither one seemed deeper or shallower than the other. Since the 3rd ed. rules are simpler, easier to teach, and more in line with the rest of the Carcassonne rules, that's what I go with.
 
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Matthew Harper
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riogames wrote:
Yes, I understand many think the 3rd edition rules are "easier", but I do not think they
are better enough to add the confusion of different sets of "official" English rules.

I understand that, but there are already two sets of "official" English rules, now that the Big Box set has been released. And "official" English Big Box rules are different from the "official" German Big Box, and from the original English rules. But I don't understand some of the choices - why change the rules for builders and pigs (they aren't followers any more) and correct the rule in The Tower which said that followers on couldn't be captured (they now can), but not change farmer scoring or the small city rule? Why not take the opportunity with the Big Box to give everything an overhaul?

(An overview of the changes of which I'm aware is here, http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/137897, for example)
 
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DAVID MERCER
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DougOrleans wrote:
This sort of makes sense in a 2-player game....


You are correct. I am only referring to the two-player game.
 
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Mik Svellov
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mjharper wrote:
But I don't understand some of the choises - why change the rules for builders and pigs (they aren't farmers any more)


They have never been Farmers. Maybe you meant to write "Followers"?
 
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Matthew Harper
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Great Dane wrote:
mjharper wrote:
But I don't understand some of the choises - why change the rules for builders and pigs (they aren't farmers any more)


They have never been Farmers. Maybe you meant to write "Followers"?

Yeah… oopsblush
 
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Mik Svellov
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aethyr wrote:
I might be the only person around here that likes the city-based scoring. I've played both ways, and I think it adds a bit more strategy in terms of late-game tile placement.

I also have never had any problems scoring, or teaching people how to score (find each completed city and count who has the most farmers touching it).


Many of us agree with you, which is why it was originally a good idea of Jay to keep onto the 1st. ed rules.

But there was a very good reason for the Germans to change the rule: The jury found the rule too complex for the game to win the Spiel des Jahres. Winning the SdJ will usually increase the sales 10-fold so no-one is going to say "no" to that. There is a huge difference between selling 50,000 copies or 500,000 copies.

As for you not having problems with the farmer scoring: good for you! In Sweden a newspaper gave the game a bad rating because the reviewer couldn't figure out the rules. Hans im Glück has received the a lot of feedback from buyers (due to a free reply-coupon inside every game) and quite a lot of ordinary people have had problems with several rules - just notice the questions made here on BGG.

Just because we don't have any problems understanding the rules it doesn't necessarily mean that the rules cannot be improved.
 
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Branko K.
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I didn't say I've found city-centric rule hard to understand, I've found it too..fiddly I guess. Farms can often spread out all over the board, and it can get frustrating searching every single farmer on every single farm for every single city.

Also, I've found that new players (especially non-gamers) find the farms the least satisfying part of the game, and making their scoring even more complicated then it should be can sometimes put them off. Actually, when playing with newbies, I tend to not focus on farms an purpose, since I've found that often people don't like "mysterious massive end scoring". When people get a grasp on the game and start taking over each other cities and so on, I try to put up more farmers gradually so they find it's also a viable strategy.
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Evan Stegman
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The farms (and the fact that I think cloisters are unbalanced) is the reason I teach players with Carcassone: Hunters & Gatherers.

I've found that for most players (especially the non-gamers), the meadows are quicker to get a handle on.

Once they 'get' meadows, I've found that, for most new players, they more quickly pick up on farms when starting them on regular Carc.
 
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Czech Mate
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I am pretty sure my wife and I score farms incorrectly,
but I find our method to be quite simple.

Basically, each person who owns a farms rcvs points
for each and every completed city their farm touches.

We ignore whether another person's farm touches the same city.
In that case, both people rcv points for the same city.
(My sense is, this is where we differ from the real rules).

We find this method to be quite straight-forward
as far as scoring farms goes. Makes it easier to
locate and declare a farm when playing, too.

mikey.
 
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Matthew Harper
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mbrna wrote:
I am pretty sure my wife and I score farms incorrectly,
but I find our method to be quite simple.

Basically, each person who owns a farms rcvs points
for each and every completed city their farm touches.

We ignore whether another person's farm touches the same city.
In that case, both people rcv points for the same city.
(My sense is, this is where we differ from the real rules).

We find this method to be quite straight-forward
as far as scoring farms goes. Makes it easier to
locate and declare a farm when playing, too.

mikey.

Isn't that simply 3rd edition scoring? - or 2nd edition if you get 4 points per city?
 
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Werner Bär
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mjharper wrote:
Isn't that simply 3rd edition scoring? - or 2nd edition if you get 4 points per city?

It's 3rd edition scoring.
In 2nd edition, there was the additional restriction that you can get (farmer) points for each city only once, even if you have the majority in several farms that support a city.
 
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Life's a die and then you bitch
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I have the Rio Grande Big Box; I'd like to thank Matthew Harper for providing a translation of the German edition rules, great work! meeple

Having tried both rule sets we're sticking to the Rio Grande rules but I think that including both sets would be a great idea for the future.

I do the scoring for our family group and for me the city centric rules seem easier and more fun to run through at the end of a game. My method is to take each complete city in turn and pointing out what fields are adjacent declaring the points to each player and then marking the city to show it has been counted (with a tower counter). I once moved a farmer closer to the city being scored by walking it through it's field and judging by the look on one of my teenagers face this helped her see how the field traced round in a way she hadn't originally spotted. I see this is more fiddly but the tension of the points racking up at the end of the game maintains the interest as the points are dished amongst the players in a more piecemeal fashion rather than in a big lump. The children move their scoring meeples on the track and the lead can change hands a couple of times. It is possible to stage manage this to some degree depending how close it is. I guess there's no suprises for experienced players in how many points their farmers raised, but in my group the additional tension of the meeples moving over the score track and over taking each other has led to excitement on a few occasions turning the worst part of the game into maybe a not so bad part.

Starting by deliniating a field which can be quite big in a game with two expansions and resolving majorities then counting cities and awarding points in a lump is (for my family at least) less obvious and less fun.
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