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Subject: Nation building rss

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Mark Turner
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Chances are I'll be playing this 2-player first, so I wanted to make sure I understand the nation building recommended variant.

After an empire achieves supremacy:

1. Remove everything from the board.
2. In turn, pick up all cards in your tableau and choose whether to keep in hand or discard.
3. Start a new round.

Game ends when
A) The same empire has achieved supremacy twice.
B) all topple cards are gone, in which case it goes to tie-breaker.

I had a couple of questions:
1. why would I not keep all cards in my tableau? What advantage discarding?
2. does picking up all tableau cards include loyalty cards and prizes.
3. If 2 is true, does the restart happen with everyone unaffiliated?
4. For an empire to win twice before 4 topple cards are used up is clearly challenging. Does this mean that the tie-breaker happens more often to determine game victor? Ie, building up military cards is an need in itself.
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Edwin S
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For 1): if you keep a lot of cards in your hand, you lose the flexibility to buy new ones, since hand limits are tight and you can't buy a card if you haven't space in your hand (you might not want to keep a 1-value economic card if you think you'll soon be able to buy a 3, for example - you really don't want to be wasting actions on discards).
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Mark Turner
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Ilikegames wrote:
For 1): if you keep a lot of cards in your hand, you lose the flexibility to buy new ones, since hand limits are tight and you can't buy a card if you haven't space in your hand (you might not want to keep a 1-value economic card if you think you'll soon be able to buy a 3, for example - you really don't want to be wasting actions on discards).
Great point. Thank you.
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Cole Wehrle
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Your understanding of the variant is correct.

Now, to your questions.
1. The board "reset" represents the honeymoon period after the new regime is in power. Discarding can be very important. When your hand swells beyond hand limit, it will slow down the game. If you discard everything but say an intelligence card, you can start drafting from teh market again and get things moving. Most commonly, players who discard tend to be those that helped an empire achieve supremacy but lack the influence to pull off a victory. As you might imagine, discards in this way are a little less common in the two player game but they still happen.

2. Good question. Starting loyalty cards and taken Loyalty prizes are not technically part of your tableau, so they cannot be taken into your hand.

4. Yes, it's tough. According to my data, the game usually ends on the 3rd topple normally (The full numbers are something close to 1st: 15%, 2nd: 25%, 3rd: 40%, 4th: 20%). The nation building variant was created pretty late in development so I don't have as robust of a dataset but they look something like 1st: 0, 2nd: 25%, 3rd: 25%, 4th: 50%). In practice, the marketplace competition tends to be much sharper and you see a lot of generals getting assassinated.

There's a group I play with sometimes that prefers a more graduated victory condition (rather than the all or nothing condition of the Pax games).

Here's that variant: Whenever a topple is successful, all of the players loyal to that empire get VPs = influence. The game tends to be a little more cooperative, though your mileage may vary. I tend to prefer the more cutthroat game as written.
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Jack Francisco
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Cole - what is your overall feel of the 2p game with the NB variant? Is it something you'd recommend?
 
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Cole Wehrle
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senorcoo wrote:
Cole - what is your overall feel of the 2p game with the NB variant? Is it something you'd recommend?
Yes. Though, I should add that the two player game is an odd duck. I love it myself, but it takes some getting used to. It is a little fragile. NB helps, but I'd recommend repeat play over anything else (if you are finding the games going short). At virtually every player configuration, players often hand the game over a few turns before they realize it. This is especially true of the two player game.
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Mark Turner
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Cole Wehrle wrote:

2. Good question. Starting loyalty cards and taken Loyalty prizes are not technically part of your tableau, so they cannot be taken into your hand.
So, to be clear on this, they stay in place, correct? Ie, the players regain a good amount of their loyalty during the honeymoon.
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Cole Wehrle
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MrMT wrote:
Cole Wehrle wrote:

2. Good question. Starting loyalty cards and taken Loyalty prizes are not technically part of your tableau, so they cannot be taken into your hand.
So, to be clear on this, they stay in place, correct? Ie, the players regain a good amount of their loyalty during the honeymoon.
Correct.
 
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Gillum the Stoor
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MrMT wrote:
Game ends when ... the same empire has achieved supremacy twice.
The rules actually say, "an Empire will need to achieve Supremacy a second consecutive time."

Thus, if the first three Topples give Supremacy to the British, the Russians, and the British again, respectively, the game does not end because the British achievements of Supremacy were not consecutive.

Less clear to me is what happens if (1) no Empire achieved Supremacy in the second Topple (and thus no achievement of Supremacy intervened between the two British achievements); or (2) the second Topple was discarded during cleanup (and thus no Topple intervened between the two British achievements).

#2 was asked but not answered here.
 
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Cole Wehrle
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Ah, thanks for bringing up that thread, I missed it.

If a Topple was discarded from the market, then it never was given the change to succeed or fail. Therefore, it would not count against the special requirement of the Nation Building rules. (That is, the Brits could still end the game if they could take the next topple successfully.)
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Gillum the Stoor
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If the second Topple was purchased but unsuccessful, the game can end only via the fourth Topple card?
 
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Cole Wehrle
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Correct.
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