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Subject: Is This a Good 2-Player Game? rss

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Mattia Ravasi
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Hello everyone a friend of mine who's a huge fan of 7 Wonders recently got me interested in the game, and after watching a few reviews I have to admit it looks pretty nice.
Yet since I have a limited budget to invest in board games, and since most of the time it's just my girlfriend and I playing, I usually tend to prefer games that are also good when played with just two players.

Now, 7 Wonders seems to be a lot about fighting/facing your neighbors and passing stuff around, and it seems to me like playing it in two wouldn't be exactly the same experience.

So, what would you say? Is this game still great when played by two players? Is it a very different experience than playing it with lots of people?
Thank you so much
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Ron
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I play 7W a lot as a 2player with my wife (using the included special 2player rules) and we both like it a lot. The experience is close to the multi-player game, I'd say.
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Andy Burgess
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There's always 7 Wonders Duel if you can wait for it to come out and you don't mind that it's just for two players.
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Jason MacConnell
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My wife and I have had the opposite experience, we really like the game but we don't enjoy the 2 player rules at all. For us it is a very awkward mechanism to simulate a third player and we don't enjoy it. We have also tried a modified team version where we each play two civilizations, that was a little better but it was a little awkward to play two at the same time. We are really looking forward to 7 Wonders: Duel because that is a specifically designed 2 player game that will hopefully offer a lot of what we enjoy about 7 Wonders.
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Jon Cant
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The two player game is excellent, the dummy player aspect actually brings interesting ways to screw your opponent and help yourself.
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Runcible Spoon
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7 Wonders is at its best with 2p and at its worst with the gimicky 7 player count.

The more often you can see a hand of cards in a drafting game the longer the planning horizon and the better chance you have for meaningful decisions in the game. As a general rule drafting games are best at a low player count.

JasoMac wrote:
My wife and I have had the opposite experience, we really like the game but we don't enjoy the 2 player rules at all. For us it is a very awkward mechanism to simulate a third player and we don't enjoy it.


Emphasis mine.

You are doing it wrong.

You are not supposed to try to simulate a 3rd player. This is a newbie mistake. The free civilization should be used as a resource that both players try to take advantage of. The free ciz. is used to deny your opponent cards they need, milk it for the money it has and use it to run an arms race against your opponent if they are going military and you are not.

Give it a try, 7 wonders is great with 2p.

Edit: It is worth mentioning that 2p is much more confrontational than any other player count and experience and expertise matter much more. The best player is generally going to win because a lot of the noise has been filtered out of the game.
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Andrew Kapish
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No.
 
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Darin Bolyard
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My 2 cents: YES. Others' 2 cents:
Poll: Rating for official 2 player game
What is the best expansion for 2-player?
There's also been a few discussions about playing 2-player...
2 Player Game Experience
2 Player Variant of 7 Wonders
Hand asymmetry in the 2-player variant
Best 2 player variant
Quality of the 2-player variant?
2 player "expert"
2 Player variant without dummy player
Beginner 2 player variant - No extra rules at all.
2-Player variant (so I can play with my son) using teams of two cities
Exclude cads in a 2-player game
Two Player Variant for 7 Wonders
Simplest 2-player Variant Suggestion
2 Playing Variant Using the Modify Structure for Teams?
2 Player Variant Without Free City
2-player variant
Yet another 2 Player Variant
Expanded 2 player variant using a 4-player setup
Lesser 2 player variant (aka Barbarians!)
2 players variant
2 player variant + Tournament rules
I'm sure there're as many that I didn't dig up...
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Darin Bolyard
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Runcible Spoon wrote:
You are not supposed to try to simulate a 3rd player. This is a newbie mistake. The free civilization should be used as a resource that both players try to take advantage of. The free civ. is used to deny your opponent cards they need, milk it for the money it has and use it to run an arms race against your opponent if they are going military and you are not.

Give it a try, 7 wonders is great with 2p.

Edit: It is worth mentioning that 2p is much more confrontational than any other player count and experience and expertise matter much more. The best player is generally going to win because a lot of the noise has been filtered out of the game.

Agreed.
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Andy Burgess
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Runcible Spoon wrote:
... and use it to run an arms race against your opponent if they are going military and you are not.


I agree with the rest of your comments, but I don't understand this. The only thing you're doing here is to encourage your opponent to get more of a military lead against you, meaning you've less chance to catch up. The best you can hope to achieve is to take a single point off your opponent if they lose the war against the free civ. And even then, it's zero-sum because you'll lose the point too.

Now if you're talking about trying to encourage your opponent to get more military cards, having decided not to bother with them yourself, and therefore to get fewer of other card types, then I can see the use of it, but that's much more subtle and subjective.

Or if you've decided to go the military route, and you make sure to give other military cards to the free civ, so that your opponent loses two points each round and you're still gaining, that makes sense too.

But I can't see any other case where it would be worth doing.
 
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Darin Bolyard
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MercifulBiscuit wrote:
But I can't see any other case where it would be worth doing.

Once your opponent is leading you in military, and you've resigned yourself not to catch up and go for other strategies, you can still keep him taking military in order to keep ahead of the free city by giving the free city more military. This can lead your opponent to take an otherwise redundant military card in order to compete with the free city, leaving you more choices in the cards for the strategies you're pursuing.
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Steven Albano
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I love this with two players. I think it's really tight and fun.
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Andy Burgess
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dbolyard wrote:
MercifulBiscuit wrote:
But I can't see any other case where it would be worth doing.

Once your opponent is leading you in military, and you've resigned yourself not to catch up and go for other strategies, you can still keep him taking military in order to keep ahead of the free city. This can lead your opponent to take an otherwise redundant military card in order to compete with the free city, leaving you more choices in the cards for the strategies you're pursuing.


I understand, but what each player should remember is that they're not competing with the free city. Losing military to the free city only ever means losing a point. So I guess if you can trick your opponent into competing for military with the free city, they deserve to lose anyway.
 
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Darin Bolyard
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You are competing with the free city. And a military loss to the free city isn't merely -1 point. Sure, that's the token you receive. But the net loss per player on either side is -2 in age 1, -4 in age 2, and -6 in age 3.
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Andy Burgess
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That's the net loss if you lose a fight against the other player, but not against the free city. You can't lose the game to the free city. Its final score doesn't count. At least, that's how we play. I can't see it making sense otherwise.

Also, if you make sure the free city wins each battle against your opponent as well as against you, then the net result is zero.

Edit: clarity.
 
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Jared
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We also enjoy this with two. There's less randomness and more focus making for even harder decisions (I want this card so bad, but if I take that she'll take the other card that greatly benefits her).
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Darin Bolyard
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MercifulBiscuit wrote:
That's the net loss if you lose a fight against the other player, but not against the free city.

This↑ is incorrect. Military conflicts are resolved in the interim, and the free city's military is resolved against each of the 2 players as well. It's irrelevant whether the free city scores points or not, as wins and loses are awarded to each player against the free city. (There's nothing in the rules stating that the free city doesn't score, by the way).
MercifulBiscuit wrote:
Also, if you make sure the free city wins each battle against your opponent as well as against you, then the net result is zero.

A net result of zero is far better than a net result of -9 against you. Remember, since both players do resolve military conflict vs. the free city, your opponent is stands to gain -3 for 3 military losses vs. the free city, or +9 for 3 military victories vs. the free city. That's a 12 point differential in your opponent's score. And it's a difference of 9 points between you and your opponent.

And should you succeed at getting your opponent to take a military just to counter the free city, who knows what kind of point generating card you will be able to gain which otherwise may have been taken by your opponent. But this is where speculation come in. I won't go any further.
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Andy Burgess
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dbolyard wrote:
MercifulBiscuit wrote:
That's the net loss if you lose a fight against the other player, but not against the free city.

This↑ is incorrect. Military conflicts are resolved in the interim, and the free city's military is resolved against each of the 2 players as well. It's irrelevant whether the free city scores points or not, as wins and loses are awarded to each player against the free city.


I respectfully disagree. Unless I've missed something, you're talking about the -1 you took compared to the +1/3/5 that you could have had, but that's not how net scoring works. You can only net against your opponent - i.e. "this action caused me to lose x points and you to gain y points, so my net loss is (x-y)." This calculation doesn't work against the free city, because you don't care how many points it gets in the end...

dbolyard wrote:
(There's nothing in the rules stating that the free city doesn't score, by the way).


... unless, of course, you do. This is a good point, but I still main to that you're playing against your human opponent, not against the free city.

dbolyard wrote:
And should you succeed at getting your opponent to take a military just to counter the free city, who knows what kind of point generating card you will be able to gain which otherwise may have been taken by your opponent. But this is where speculation come in. I won't go any further.


Agreed. And yes, this is much more subjective...
 
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Darin Bolyard
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MercifulBiscuit wrote:
dbolyard wrote:
MercifulBiscuit wrote:
That's the net loss if you lose a fight against the other player, but not against the free city.

This↑ is incorrect. Military conflicts are resolved in the interim, and the free city's military is resolved against each of the 2 players as well. It's irrelevant whether the free city scores points or not, as wins and loses are awarded to each player against the free city.

I respectfully disagree. Unless I've missed something...

MercifulBiscuit wrote:
dbolyard wrote:
And should you succeed at getting your opponent to take a military just to counter the free city, who knows what kind of point generating card you will be able to gain which otherwise may have been taken by your opponent. But this is where speculation come in. I won't go any further.


Agreed. And yes, this is much more subjective...

Since this↑ was the point being made in the first place, it appears that your initial qualms have been satisfied.
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Piotr Posacki
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Mattia, the game is worth it for any number of players

You should remember that besides of official 2-player variant (which I personally like), there is also great unofficial mode from Empires fan expansion, in which each player controlls two cities (I prefer this one, but some new players find this too difficult).

But, generally speaking: Yes, buy 7Wonders even for two players!
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Andy Burgess
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dbolyard wrote:
Since this↑ was the point being made in the first place, it appears that your initial qualms have been satisfied.


Words fail me. Qualms? What on earth are you talking about? I thought we were having a conversation about whether or not it's worth fighting battles against the free city for its own sake, which I still submit it is not. I have no qualms.

Oh also, if you'd like to read the thread from the top again, the argument you've arbitrarily decided was decisive was one of the points I made initially.
 
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Mattia Ravasi
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Thanks everybody for your replies I see there are quite different opinions... But I read enough positive ones to convince me ^^ I think I'll get the game as soon as I can, perhaps try it with 3 or 4 players the first time, and then try the 2-player mode thank you all again!
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Steven Albano
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Krokgard wrote:
Thanks everybody for your replies I see there are quite different opinions... But I read enough positive ones to convince me ^^ I think I'll get the game as soon as I can, perhaps try it with 3 or 4 players the first time, and then try the 2-player mode thank you all again!


2-player mode does require several plays of the base game to really understand it. The two player gameplay is basically the same as 3+, but you're doing a little more each turn and can be slightly overwhelming if you're not used to the regular game.



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mumu shanshi
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MercifulBiscuit wrote:
I thought we were having a conversation about whether or not it's worth fighting battles against the free city for its own sake

I suspect there's been a misunderstanding here, possibly based on differing interpretation of the term "net loss".

Imagine the following scenario - you (Player) decided at an early stage to forgo military as your opponent (Oppo) is playing Rhodos and took an early military lead.

It is the last round of Age 3. Current military strengths are:
Player - 0
Oppo - 6
Free city - 5

You are playing cards for free city. You pick up the last Age 3 military card from the Free city deck. There are no remaining military cards in Oppo's deck this round.

If you do not play the military card for Free city this round, Oppo will win the Age 3 combats vs. both Player and Free city, for 10 points.
If you play the military card for Free city this round, Oppo will score a total of 4 points in Age 3 combat.

Would you say that is a total net point loss of 6 for Oppo, based on the one card you played for Free city?
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Darin Bolyard
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mumushanshi wrote:
Would you say that is a total net point loss of 6 for Oppo, based on the one card you played for Free city?

Yes. However, even better than this↑ is if you've created the military situation described above so that "Oppo" plays that last military card himself (in front of him, on his wonder, or for gold) in order to guarantee the 6 points he stands to lose if that card is allowed to go to the free city.
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