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Power Grid: The Stock Companies» Forums » General

Subject: Comparison to Imperial (2030) rss

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Nate Simons
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I'm surprised no one has commented (that I can see) on the correlation between the Stock Companies variant and another highly regarded economic game Imperial and it's second coming Imperial 2030. I'm a huge fan of Power Grid and Imperial so to see the two come together like this was a dream come true. Although I own it, I have yet to play with the expansion, but I'm curious if what this expansion brings to Power Grid will fully encompass everything I love about Imperial, therefore making it absolete.

Is anybody else a fan of both games that has had time to get this expansion to the table? Does this do everything that Imperial does? Or are there elements/mechanics of Imperial that stand on their own?
 
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Pete Goch
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The stock market is patterned more after an 18xx game than Imperial's bonds. There really isn't that much in common between this game and Imperial beyond players having/gaining/losing a controlling interest in the various companies.
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Andi Hub
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I think the bond market is extremely abstracted and it does not feel like buying stocks in companies because of economic reasons. They main factor is that you are extremely limited when to buy or sell bonds. Because of the stock rounds I expect power grid stock companies to convey this feeling much better.
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Eric Flood
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ringo84 wrote:
I think the bond market is extremely abstracted and it does not feel like buying stocks in companies because of economic reasons. They main factor is that you are extremely limited when to buy or sell bonds. Because of the stock rounds I expect power grid stock companies to convey this feeling much better.
You cannot sell bonds in Imperial. Playing without the Investor card also removes most of the restriction to which you refer (and is the game I, and most if not all 18xx'ers, prefer; more casual gamers seem to prefer the Investor card).
 
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Eric Flood
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TheOneTrueZeke wrote:
The stock market is patterned more after an 18xx game than Imperial's bonds. There really isn't that much in common between this game and Imperial beyond players having/gaining/losing a controlling interest in the various companies.
Based on the relatively flat game I saw last night, a bond-type stock round might not be the worst idea...
 
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Imad
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Granted I've only played The Stock Companies once, but I found it to play almost nothing like Imperial. In fact, going in with an Imperial mindset (as I did) is disastrous.

Early capitalization in TSC is incredibly important. The various companies rely entirely on player investments to buy power plants/resources and build city connections. A company with a large amount of starting capital will explode onto the board, gobbling up cities like candy. A company with only two shares sold (or even three or four with the cheaper companies) will be unable to build or generate reasonable revenue.

In Imperial, diversification is a valid (usually preferred) starting tactic. Any nation can expand, tax, and even build factories regardless of player investment. The difference in available actions for a company with a $6m investment and one with a $30m investment is negligible (although some options may make more sense for the controlling player strategically in each circumstance).

That's not to say that there's no room for strategy in TSC; there are opportunities to dump a company that you control in order to hose the next greatest shareholder, for example. However, most of TSC's playtime is devoted to the relatively mundane Power Grid activities that involve managing efficiencies at the margins. Imperial, on the other hand, has continual investments (and no way to sell back bonds) and constant interactions, with very little time spent on fiddly details.

I like Power Grid and Imperial individually, and am willing to play TSC again, but I don't feel that TSC makes Imperial obsolete in the least.
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Pete Goch
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emagius wrote:

Early capitalization in TSC is incredibly important. The various companies rely entirely on player investments to buy power plants/resources and build city connections. A company with a large amount of starting capital will explode onto the board, gobbling up cities like candy. A company with only two shares sold (or even three or four with the cheaper companies) will be unable to build or generate reasonable revenue.

Yes and no. Yes, the company that gets the best capitalization (which is likely to be the $40 company) will likely perform the best. But this is a stock game.

The $20 companies provide cheap shares and, if you get the president's share, a tempo gain on the other players. If the other players let one player start both $20 companies that player will have 4 shares to everyone else's 2 or 3 and they'll still have more money to buy more shares.

Getting more shares in the first round than the other players can be a huge advantage if you also maintain a good relative priority for the next stock round. If you can dump a large number of those $20 shares after two business rounds of appreciation you can start buying up the more valuable shares.
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