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Curious what sort of rules differences there might be. If I remember correctly, Fire in the Lake had something different about LoCs from Andean Abyss. I'm most familiar with FitL and I'm curious what sort of nuances I would need to keep in mind when playing this to keep the two straight. Thanks!
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Okay, here are some of the rule differences but I will spare you the design-notes background for them for now (probably will detail these in a future post for the InsideGMT blog):

- 2 players, not 4. The Sequence of Play for each Event Card is much the same as for the other games but no one is ineligible, only 1st or 2nd, but who's-on-first changes constantly during the game due to player decisions.

- No looking ahead one card in the deck; makes it way too gamey when there are only 2 players.

- No LoCs. No ECs either.

- A couple of new Special Activities.

- Political-type consideration mechanisms for the Government player include the Commitment metric (of the government in Paris) and the France Track.

- A couple of dual Capabilities are in the Event Deck, with sharp edges on both sides.

Brian
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ltmurnau wrote:
- No LoCs. No ECs either.

So how are Resources affected by the other player? Is there a fixed amount per Campaign?
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Both sides get a certain amount of Resources during Propaganda Rounds, as in other games of the series; the sources and amounts vary during the game.
The Insurgent player can Tax during campaigns to get more Resources.
Some Event Cards add or take away Resources as well.

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Silly question: Will there be an event card named "Rock the Casbah"?
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Quote:
- 2 players, not 4.


Hooray! I raised this in a post or two for Cuba Libre - COIN needs a two player title. I just can't seem to get players together for other COIN titles, and personally I much prefer two player war games anyway.

I notice that "dice rolling" has been added as a mechanic on CT's home page. Does this mean it will have similarities with Labyrinth: The War on Terror, 2001 – ? in that operations (for the insurgents, for example) must be rolled for? I hope so, as I prefer the slightly less "chess like" decision making that result from dice rolls.

Looking forward to this one.
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Turbine2k5 wrote:
Silly question: Will there be an event card named "Rock the Casbah"?


Yeah, that is a silly question!
There is a "Casbah" event card though; can be nasty for either player.

Brian
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red_gamster wrote:
Quote:
- 2 players, not 4.


Hooray! I raised this in a post or two for Cuba Libre - COIN needs a two player title. I just can't seem to get players together for other COIN titles, and personally I much prefer two player war games anyway.

I notice that "dice rolling" has been added as a mechanic on CT's home page. Does this mean it will have similarities with Labyrinth: The War on Terror, 2001 – ? in that operations (for the insurgents, for example) must be rolled for? I hope so, as I prefer the slightly less "chess like" decision making that result from dice rolls.

Looking forward to this one.


The "charm" of the COIN system in the games so far has been the interactions, watchfulness and outright paranoia between the four factions.
But not every conflict lends itself well to a four-faction solution, but it still could benefit from a game using this kind of system, hence the solution to the two-body problem.
All I can say is that there are people who will agree with you, and there are others who will not agree with you.
As the designer, everyone will be able to agree that it's all my fault, though.

I added "dice rolling" to be honest, as the game does include dice.
Insurgent attacks are still rolled for as in other games, and there are quite a few Event Cards (more than in other games published so far) where you roll dice for the impact of an event.

Brian
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Turbine2k5 wrote:
Silly question: Will there be an event card named "Rock the Casbah"?


No, the Shareef don't like it.
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Thank you describing the game for us, Brian. It sounds very interesting and has me think about the ways in which this changes tge familiar COIN dynamics.

One of the cool features of the 4-player COIN titles is the ability of each faction to affect the fortunes of all others (to varying degrees). Sometimes this happens directly by an Assault resulting in another faction losing control, for example. At other times it's more indirect, say, by one faction deciding not to sweep thereby allowing a second faction to conduct terror and hit the support levels of a third faction.

All this will be missing in a 2-p COIN. I'm not saying it's a problem, only, does it not lead to situations where one faction is unable to reduce the other faction back below its victory conditions? I mean, I'm thinking of a situation like this: imagine a 2-p Cuba Libre in which the Govt has got the cities clean of 26J and at active support. There'd be no way for 26J to alter the situation (unless by a fluke event or capability of course).

I'm sure you've taken such an issue into account in your design, but I wonder how?
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I like the idea that in a two player you are spending more time trying to actually win rather than keeping the other three factions in check. The few COIN games I've played (I did enjoy them!) involved making sure rivals were not near the win conditions, rather than worrying about your own.

I like the idea of dice rolls for events too - I like a certain degree of randomness in my CDG/wargames and this should bring out less certainty when playing events.

I'm intrigued! Must go on and P500 this.
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masil wrote:
Thank you describing the game for us, Brian. It sounds very interesting and has me think about the ways in which this changes tge familiar COIN dynamics.

One of the cool features of the 4-player COIN titles is the ability of each faction to affect the fortunes of all others (to varying degrees). Sometimes this happens directly by an Assault resulting in another faction losing control, for example. At other times it's more indirect, say, by one faction deciding not to sweep thereby allowing a second faction to conduct terror and hit the support levels of a third faction.

All this will be missing in a 2-p COIN. I'm not saying it's a problem, only, does it not lead to situations where one faction is unable to reduce the other faction back below its victory conditions? I mean, I'm thinking of a situation like this: imagine a 2-p Cuba Libre in which the Govt has got the cities clean of 26J and at active support. There'd be no way for 26J to alter the situation (unless by a fluke event or capability of course).

I'm sure you've taken such an issue into account in your design, but I wonder how?


Well, when there is only one other person in the game, you obviously won't have as complex a set of interactions as when you have three antagonists (even if some of them are on your side!).

It's a general principle in COIN games (at least in the ones so far designed) that there is a different combination of victory conditions for each player, to put a point on the overlapping but not always directly opposed goals of the multiple factions in the game.
In A Distant Plain, for example, each faction pursues a set of two objectives: one in direct opposition to an objective on another faction; a second objective independent of the other factions, though always opposable somehow.

In Colonial Twilight the Government victory is based on Support and level of Commitment; the Insurgent, on Opposition and number of Bases.
Support and Opposition are directly opposed, Commitment can be batted down through a variety of mechanisms, and Bases are always good targets.

Brian
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red_gamster wrote:
I like the idea that in a two player you are spending more time trying to actually win rather than keeping the other three factions in check. The few COIN games I've played (I did enjoy them!) involved making sure rivals were not near the win conditions, rather than worrying about your own.

I like the idea of dice rolls for events too - I like a certain degree of randomness in my CDG/wargames and this should bring out less certainty when playing events.

I'm intrigued! Must go on and P500 this.


Thanks for your order!
Even though only 2 factions per turn get to do something, just like in a f-faction COIN system design, the game tends to run quite a bit faster. In our tests so far the "Tournament Scenario", a 3-campaign scenario covering the last two years of the war, usually clocks in at less than two hours if players are familiar with the system and free of Analysis Paralysis.

Brian
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ltmurnau wrote:



I added "dice rolling" to be honest, as the game does include dice.
Insurgent attacks are still rolled for as in other games, and there are quite a few Event Cards (more than in other games published so far) where you roll dice for the impact of an event.

Brian


Uff, that question almost gave me a heart attack I love COIN series but I hate Labyrinth - the dice rolling killed that game for me (when you try to roll 4 with a +1 modificator and fail 5 times in a row, you can really see how bad of an idea rolling dice for everything can be). COIN games have very little of dice rolling and if it was added, it woulnd't be a COIN game anymore.

All the ideas in this game look great at this point and I'm very optimistic. If my first experiance with ordering a game from p500 goes well (and that is based on how much tax will hit me for bying stuff in the US), I will definitly support this one.
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Valarus wrote:
If my first experiance with ordering a game from p500 goes well (and that is based on how much tax will hit me for bying stuff in the US), I will definitly support this one.


GMT Games have partners in Germany (BraveNewWorld.biz, UGG.de). Although I don't know anything about the tax regulations between Germany and Poland, I imagine (pre)ordering with these guys might save you some money.
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masil wrote:
Valarus wrote:
If my first experiance with ordering a game from p500 goes well (and that is based on how much tax will hit me for bying stuff in the US), I will definitly support this one.


GMT Games have partners in Germany (BraveNewWorld.biz, UGG.de). Although I don't know anything about the tax regulations between Germany and Poland, I imagine (pre)ordering with these guys might save you some money.


Very interesting, thanks for info. The games is already ordered from GMT (Triumph and Tragedy) so we will just see if it gets stop by the customs or not - I heard different versions from players in Poland about this.

Does ordering with those shops count as p500 for GMT? Supporting the creation of the game is kind of a point, otherwise I could just wait until it hits retail.
 
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Valarus wrote:
masil wrote:
Valarus wrote:
If my first experiance with ordering a game from p500 goes well (and that is based on how much tax will hit me for bying stuff in the US), I will definitly support this one.


GMT Games have partners in Germany (BraveNewWorld.biz, UGG.de). Although I don't know anything about the tax regulations between Germany and Poland, I imagine (pre)ordering with these guys might save you some money.


Very interesting, thanks for info. The games is already ordered from GMT (Triumph and Tragedy) so we will just see if it gets stop by the customs or not - I heard different versions from players in Poland about this.

Does ordering with those shops count as p500 for GMT? Supporting the creation of the game is kind of a point, otherwise I could just wait until it hits retail.


I know UGG communicate their preorders to GMT directly (I've corresponded with Udo, the owner, directly by email).

How it works with Brave New World, I do not know. I imagine they've got a preorder of multiple copies in with GMT and might even be adding new copies to their preorder if interested customers contact them.

One thing I do know is that, upon contacting GMT to ask what kind of presence they've got in Essen 2015, they told me UGG and Brave New World are their official representatives at that fair. So when buying GMT titles from either of these two sources, it seems to me you can be sure you're supporting the company.
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Valarus wrote:
ltmurnau wrote:



I added "dice rolling" to be honest, as the game does include dice.
Insurgent attacks are still rolled for as in other games, and there are quite a few Event Cards (more than in other games published so far) where you roll dice for the impact of an event.

Brian


Uff, that question almost gave me a heart attack I love COIN series but I hate Labyrinth - the dice rolling killed that game for me (when you try to roll 4 with a +1 modificator and fail 5 times in a row, you can really see how bad of an idea rolling dice for everything can be). COIN games have very little of dice rolling and if it was added, it woulnd't be a COIN game anymore.

All the ideas in this game look great at this point and I'm very optimistic. If my first experiance with ordering a game from p500 goes well (and that is based on how much tax will hit me for bying stuff in the US), I will definitly support this one.


Well, there is nowhere near as much dice-rolling as in Labyrinth.

Probability of rolling less than "3" five times in a row is only 0.4% likely, so congratulations on that rare feat!

You will not roll the dice more than twice in a row in this game (and that only in the course of resolving a coup d'etat).

Brian
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Quote:
Uff, that question almost gave me a heart attack I love COIN series but I hate Labyrinth - the dice rolling killed that game for me (when you try to roll 4 with a +1 modificator and fail 5 times in a row, you can really see how bad of an idea rolling dice for everything can be). COIN games have very little of dice rolling and if it was added, it woulnd't be a COIN game anymore.


Well I absolutely love Labyrinth - and the dice rolling is a major factor in my enjoyment of the game. Nothing like failing three or four major jihad rolls in a row to experience the frustration of a failed insurgency or getting lucky with an unexpected -1 War of Ideas roll in Egypt to turn it to Good.

Personally, I'm disappointed the Labyrinth engine hasn't been used to create a similar conflict sim. Without dice, too many wargames become chess-like. Conflicts, IMHO, are about trying to reconcile your strategy with many, many random events AND operations far removed from optimal moves and efficient resource strategy.
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Adam, a similar conflict sim to what?

Seriously, I take your point about wanting due attention paid to randomness, happenstance and improvisation.
But players can feel, after too many die rolls, that the game is playing them - each player has an individual level of tolerance for that point.

Some players would be happy never rolling dice; some, like you, don't mind an amount of "wristage" that would cripple an older man's forearm.
All I know is that it's always the designer's fault!

For me, it's not so much the randomness - though I have designed some very chaotic games, like Redguard - but the wicked fun one can have in forcing agonizing choices on a player, agonizing either because they aren't sure of the probabilities or outcome, or because of the limitations forced on them by your model of reality.

Brian
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Quote:
ome players would be happy never rolling dice; some, like you, don't mind an amount of "wristage" that would cripple an older man's forearm.


I'm not really into wristage - give me a CRT over buckets o' dice anytime - but I do think Labyrinth got it just right. A good number of auto ops (for the US) and dice for the Jihadists whose ops are far more unpredictable.

I guess I'm still an ounce disappointed from my expectations that the COIN series was going to be a multi-player Labyrinth. I understand that the random card draw brings enough luck to the game, but I'd have loved a bit more randomness to operations. Still, I've only played three games of COIN (Cuba Libre) so perhaps my opinion will change after a few more games.
 
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Quote:
Personally, I'm disappointed the Labyrinth engine hasn't been used to create a similar conflict sim. Without dice, too many wargames become chess-like. Conflicts, IMHO, are about trying to reconcile your strategy with many, many random events AND operations far removed from optimal moves and efficient resource strategy.

Hi Adam! Well, there's Labyrinth: The Awakening, 2010 – ? -- not a whole new conflict sim, but a heap of new stuff in it nonetheless.

Naturally I would love to see Labyrinth inspire a multiplayer game also ... Perhaps some brave designing soul will attempt it.

Cheers! Volko
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Volko wrote:
Quote:
Personally, I'm disappointed the Labyrinth engine hasn't been used to create a similar conflict sim. Without dice, too many wargames become chess-like. Conflicts, IMHO, are about trying to reconcile your strategy with many, many random events AND operations far removed from optimal moves and efficient resource strategy.

Hi Adam! Well, there's Labyrinth: The Awakening, 2010 – ? -- not a whole new conflict sim, but a heap of new stuff in it nonetheless.

Naturally I would love to see Labyrinth inspire a multiplayer game also ... Perhaps some brave designing soul will attempt it.

Cheers! Volko


I preordered it the day I read about it. Looking forward to it as well.

Perhaps I'll have a go at a multi-player Lab engine game! Just got to think about a good scenario, possibly away from insurgency theme. I'll get back to you Volko in about five years time...
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Very good, Sir, I shall await!
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