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Subject: Is Java a lot like Tikal? rss

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I'm thinking of getting Java, but I already have Tikal. I don't want to get Java if it's too similar to Tikal. Any comments on how alike these two games are?
 
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True Blue Jon
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Java is a lot better than Tikal.
 
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Dave Eisen
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Somewhat similar. Placing tiles, moving dudes around, action points, scoring for control of regions.

They feel different because Java is somewhat more dynamic than Tikal. But really, they're in the same general school of games. I own both and am glad I do, but if I had a limited budget for games maybe I wouldn't.
 
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Sacha Spinks
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And Mexica is better again.

I found Tikal became a bit the same with mutiple plays, Java perhaps less so. But Java is much more prone to Analysis Paralysis. Mexica lands somewhere inbetween. At least that's how it's been for me.

All great games and if you like the Action Point system, then you better get Torres as well.
 
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Steve R Bullock
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My friends and family love to play Mexica and Tikal, but I can never get them to play Java... it is just too deep for them.

As for alike, well, they are kinda alike like oranges and tangerines are alike.

Hope that helps.
 
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Thomas Eager
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ninja I'm with Jonathan on this one. Java is my fave of the series. The only real similarity with Tikal is the use of the Action-Point mechanic. I own all of 'em but Mexica (which I haven't tried yet). They're all unique enough to justify getting the whole series. ninja
 
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Mark Wilson
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Java is very good, I still like Tikal a little better. They both have a different feel to them though and have a lot of unique things going on. The main similiarity is both have great inserts for the bits AND they both have action points. So, um... that's about it.
 
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Hammock Backpacker
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I've played all three but own only Mexica and Tikal. I find Mexica different enough from Tikal given the differing concepts of expanding territory vs. divide and conquer. Java on the other hand felt like a lot of Analysis Paralysis getting prepared for the final move where many of the points are won and games are won or lost. I was also turned off by the card play of Java when holding a 'festival'/'dance'.

My worth.
 
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Michael Kandrac
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matthew.marquand wrote:
I've played all three but own only Mexica and Tikal. I find Mexica different enough from Tikal given the differing concepts of expanding territory vs. divide and conquer. Java on the other hand felt like a lot of Analysis Paralysis getting prepared for the final move where many of the points are won and games are won or lost. I was also turned off by the card play of Java when holding a 'festival'/'dance'.

My worth.


I am in total agreement with Matthew's comment. I own all 3 of the Kiesling-Kramer mask games, and found Java to be far heavier, and far more AP inducing than its blue and green brothers. My copy of Java is available for trade.

Java is beautifully rendered but doesn't work with a lot of people, hardcore gamers included. I would strongly recommend that you play the game before buying, and then imagine how the people you game with would react to it.

Java dazzles initially, disappoints over time.

Gg
 
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Jim Cote
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I like Mexica > Tikal > Java, but I still do like Java. I own all 3. To compare Java and Tikal a bit...

- In Tikal you pay to move each man across the stones. In Java you pay when you cross terrain types, but can move as far as you like across the same terrain.

- In Tikal you score for having the most men on a temple and for treasures. In Java you score for having the highest man in a resort and for winning a party (card play).

- Actions in Tikal include: place/move guys, increase temple value, pick up treasure, exchange treasure with another player, build a camp, guard a temple. Actions in Java include: place terrain, place/move guys, build/expand a palace, draw a card, hold a party.

- In Tikal you draw a tile to add to the board, one per turn. In Java you build the island with as many terrain pieces as you want (and can afford) each turn.

- In Tikal scoring is random, based on drawing volcanoes. In Java scoring is player-controlled.

- Tikal is 2d. Java is 3d.

- Both games look great when the game is complete.
 
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True Blue Jon
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I think Java is at its best with 2, and good with 3 if people are quick to analyze and play. Mexica is great with 3 and 4. I didn't like Tikal much.
 
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Luke Morris
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Never played Mexica. I'm a big fan of Java, Tikal and also Torres.

While Tikal seems to have more of a themey feel to it (well, kinda) than Java I really like the way Java works and the way you play tiles to make the topography of the area higher and more mountainous as you go along.
I prefer Java but Java, Tikal and Torres I all rate an 8.


Oh the weaknesses with Java are the weird "holding a party" mechanic where you play cards down to control the party, and that it DOES suffer from quite horrendous AP. I tend to just play by gut feeling and plan ahead as much as possible so I play quite quickly and I thin kit's better that way. I only pause for serious thought if the player before me does exactly what I was gonna do...
 
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Mike B
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Only played Java once yet (got it recently) but was immediately more thrilled about it than Tikal. Less luck, more strategy, harder choices, which I like.

I also agree to what most people here say: deeper gameplay, nice 3d aspect, danger of Action Paralysis.

Both games are beautiful. And I also do recommend Torres as well which is also action point driven and 3d (even more so), but with a totally different feel and look.

These 3 games seem similar but play quite differently, and I like 'm all so I guess I might eventually even check out Mexica. But for the moment there are many other games ranking higher on my wishlist.
 
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Sean Ross
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So far I've managed to play all three of the mask trilogy games (plus Torres) atleast once. For comparing Tikal and Java I'd have to echo ekted's analysis. However, one thing I'd like to add is something I noticed about the shape of the decision space within the mask trilogy games as a series. In Tikal the decision space starts out narrow and widens as you add more workers and tiles to explore until it reaches its zenith in the end game. Java's decision space starts out as wide or wider than Tikal's final state and remains pretty much constant throughout due to its vertical placement options. And, finally, Mexica's decision space starts out wide open and slowly narrows as more and more of the board becomes sectioned off by canals and locked down into districts. Looking at the series in this way, you can begin to see why people may suggest that Java would be the most AP prone of the lot: in Tikal, AP potential appears to rise as the number of options available rises due to increases in the number of workers and cleared jungle tiles; in Java, it starts high and remains fairly constant from beginning to end; and, in Mexica, it seems to slowly decrease, but never disappear, as the game wears on. So, all that said, in considering whether or not to purchase Java based on your experience playing Tikal, you might think about how Tikal feels to you in its final few turns and then imagine starting at that point and stretching it out for maybe as much as two hours. That would be something like how it feels to play Java. I like it quite a bit but tastes vary.
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Jeremy Carlson
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If you really like Tikal, I think Java is the must have. Personally, I think it is way better, but I like the deeper game. They share similar mechanics, but they are very different, and most of the reasons have been listed.

I don't own Mexica yet, but I plan to, because the other three are so good.

Just to agree again with an above poster, Java is great with 2-3. 4 might drag if you have AP prone people playing it.
 
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I think every boardgamer should have the Triumvirate. Tikal, Java and Mexica, all essential gaming in my book.

My favorite is Java, because it's the deepest and has the most replay value out of the three. Java is also the BEST 2 Player game out there, and take that to the bank!
 
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Russell Moll
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Java is like combining Tikal and Torres into one game. I love both Tikal and Torres, but I don't like Java. Too heavy, too slow, too much going on. My copy never gets played.
 
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Morgan Dontanville
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I've played all three. I quite like Mexica and I think Java comes close second. I'm not a fan of Tikal, as I find the discovery of treasure too lucky, I'd like to give it another chance with the auction variant, but Mexica and Java are so streamlined it seems silly to take a game that is already prone to AP and add a whole new level of complexity.

I feel that the basic version of Tikal is the lighter of the two games, with Java being the heaviest.

The three games are similar in that a player has action points to spend moving people around and creating landscape to score from (Torres really should be included in the series). If you like the way this base system works you should enjoy the other two. Otherwise, Java isn't like Tikal.
 
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Jim Cote
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seandavidross wrote:
In Tikal the decision space starts out narrow and widens as you add more workers and tiles to explore until it reaches its zenith in the end game. Java's decision space starts out as wide or wider than Tikal's final state and remains pretty much constant throughout due to its vertical placement options.


Very nice. I may use that. cool
 
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