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Subject: Runaway leader when taking from other players? cards 229, 257, 264, 70, 80 rss

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Dan Fielding
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4 from the I Deck
3 from the K Deck

What are the odds of the same player getting all of:
Occupation:
229 Synchophant (other players pay 1 food to take grain
257 Street Musician (get 1 grain when other players use Travelling Players to get food)
264 Fencer (get wood when other players build fences)

Minor Imp:
70 Punner (plow a field for free when other player uses a plow/harrow)
80 Spinnery (take 1 wood from the player who uses the 3 Wood space)

That player won with about 50% more points than the other 3.

Reducing what the other player gets is better than a double benefit, since the other players become less likely to take that action, letting it build up. Maybe a player should only be allowed to play one of that type of card.
 
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Derry Salewski
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I mean, they probably net two food and use of the grain space whenever they want from the grain one.

They probably get a grain and some extra food for being able to take traveling players a couple times.

Fences? They get a couple wood on round 14?

No one plays a plow which are not always great plays anyway and they wasted an action and resources with the plow thing.

Spinnery gets them some wood after they've spent all that food and actions putting those occupations into play.

Very meh. I'm not an agricola expert but I wouldn't expect anyone to win by a landslide just from those cards (or win at all.)

Sounds like they were just more experienced and the other players REALLY group-thinkedly played around them more than they needed to or didn't play around them at all.
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Geoff Burkman
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Generally speaking, I think Derry is on the mark. This does not appear to be a terribly overwhelming combo of cards. In addition, it's very difficult to jump to any firm conclusions from a single anecdote. I'd love to see a full session report on this game to see how things progressed; I'm guessing that the scores were toward the low end; in addition, I'm guessing the winner didn't score more than about 40, which is well within the realm of normal expected results.

Play more games before making decisions about prohibiting various cards is my advice.
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Ben Bateson
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I think there's probably more cumulative effect than Derry or Geoff are making out. Getting free stuff without taking an action is key to doing well in Agricola, and there is a LOT of free stuff here.

(What's wrong with ploughs, by the way? They've gotten me out of lots of holes)

But I agree it's certainly not a broken combo.
 
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Todd Parker
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It can be a little frustrating when someone has the spinney or sycophant out, but Id rather an opponent have this entire list out over just the reed buyer. An aggressive reed buyer can make the first two stages brutal.

As for the others, many occupations give you something without an action. Its delayed reward from playing the occupation. The difference between the ones on this list is that they are triggered by another players action instead of time. I would usually prefer time to trigger my rewards because you can plan for it.

Plows can be handy as long as you dont force occupations out that you werent going to play early anyway, just so you can get fields out. I think the punner is only really good with the harrow out.
 
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Derry Salewski
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So let's say these things trigger an optimistic amount of times and you play them as cheaply as possible and very early.

Pay 2 food. 5 Actions. 2 wood.

+3 food.
+3 grain.
+6 wood.
+2 plows.
+5 wood.

So you get 1 food, 3 grain, 9 wood and 2 plows for five actions. It's a good deal, though you have no control over when or if most of them trigger.

You could play the double plow guy, plow a field, take 3 wood, take six wood, and take 4 food off fishing and be pretty close to that.

Opponents lost 3 food and 5 wood, but they knew they would when they took the move so don't act like it's a surprise and you just stole it from them. We're going to assume they take wood when there's 6 of it there, so it's not like 5 wood is a bad action.

The cards obviously affect what your opponents are going to do.

But I still think 3 other people with decent cards are only going to lose to that set of moves if they don't play around it correctly or are just not as good at the game in general. Obviously if everyone just keeps taking 3 wood and 1 grain every round and building 4 fences at a time things are going to get nasty.

Agree on reed (and stone) buyer being far more warping and obnoxious.

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Ben Bateson
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It will be closer to 3 actions. No-one will take an action with no other benefit just to get the Punner out. You might do for the Spinney, if you're playing 2P, but that doesn't apply in this case.
 
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