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Subject: Two Players - Any Good? rss

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Arwell McGuinness
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I've been thinking of buying Letters From Whitechapel for a while as I really like it as a 2 player game, but I've always wanted to play Fury Of Dracula. Does the 3rd edition work well as a 2 player game? There'd be occasions when it'd be played with more than 2, but would hopefully by played by 2 quite a lot. Or should I stick with Letters for now?
 
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J. Mowery
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Letters From Whitechapel plays the best with just 2p in my opinion. Fantastic game for sure.

Fury of Dracula would work just fine with 2p. However, the person playing the hunters would have to control all 4 hunters at once, and that is a LOT more to manage than controlling all of the investigators in Whitechapel. Each hunter in FoD has it's own special abilities, items, other cards, etc.

In my opinion, it would be too much to be enjoyable.


Cheers.
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Edward Woods
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With the previous editions of Fury of Dracula, 2 players was my favorite way to play. While it may seem a lot to keep track of for the hunters initially, after a game or so it becomes pretty easy to remember their special abilities etc… While I think this new version greatly improves the multi-player aspect of the game, I still really enjoy it as a 2 player battle of wits.
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Claudio Hornblower
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Well one is a "dry" catch-me-if-you-can pure deduction, the other is a thematic gothic adventure with hit points and combat, traps and events.
So it's not that foregone that if you enjoy the former, you will also enjoy the latter.

I've played a lot of Whitechapel, and 2x (so far) Fury with my wife: she loves Whitechapel but she's warm/ok about Fury (she has liked it more playing Dracula - the fear of being caught, after a long sea travel left her exhausted). To me, it's the other way around: I love that you're not a harmless target but can actually fight back.
The only thing missing is the table talking between the hunters (not during trade), that is a very funny hearing when you're Drac, giggling with detachment!

Other than that, we've enjoyed Fury even in 2-players mode.
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Joel Stair
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the problem with 2 players is that they tent to move everyone to where dracula was. and if you where playing with 4 people playing hunters then they would move where they thought Dracula had moved to.
They are normally 2-3 steps behind Dracula.
 
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Jim Jackson

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I have Letters from Whitechapel and Fury of Dracula (both 2nd and 3rd Ed.).
Played Letters from Whitechapel and Fury of Dracula (2nd Ed.) as 2 player, have not played FoD 3rd at all yet.

If you like Letters from Whitechapel with 2, I really do not see why you would not like FoD with 2.
 
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Hungry Hippo
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As my group is used to controlling multiple characters in other games (Descent 2nd edition for example), Fury of Dracula is a great 2-player game. However, I can see how it might be overly complicated for some people. Letters, on the other hand, is probably best as 2-player. So in your situation I would say Letters is the best fit but Fury is still worth looking into.
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Brian Morris
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2 player leaves the hunter player with a lot of work to do every time. I've played it twice with 2 players and each time the hunter player (I was Dracula both times) didn't enjoy the experience much.

Mind you some may like that. The game plays the same with 2 or 5 players so this is one of those situations where your mileage may vary.
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Nik Degtyarenko
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Game is only playable with 2 players.
Whats exatly 4 players going do? Move 1 miniature and pick 1 card or event?
Thats basicly all you can do on your turn as hunter.
And Alpha syndrome is a strong in this one. You ether watch how less smart teamates do things wrong or asume command. = in team is almost imposible here.
Fury belongs to family of false cooperative games. Another example would be descent or specter ops. In those types of games you are encoraged to play with 5 players but in reality its way to boring. 1 player will have big downtime waiting for other 4 players while on his own turn he can do few basic actions with zero strategy. These games just doesnt offer enough content for 1 player. At least in 2p game you control team of hunters.

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Swan Bones
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Only played with two so far and found controlling all the hunters to be fine, although I tend to enjoy complexity. I can imagine that the is a much more sociable / role play experience to be had with more, but two worked perfectly well for us.
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Myles Mulroy
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Wyrtt wrote:
Game is only playable with 2 players.
Whats exatly 4 players going do? Move 1 miniature and pick 1 card or event?
Thats basicly all you can do on your turn as hunter.
Well, yes, you get two actions a turn but that doesn't seem unusual for a board game nor too skimpy given you have a few actions to choose from and certain risks and rewards for choosing any given action. The other thing you can do is communicate with the other hunters and try to co-ordinate or make plans. This sort of communication and interaction is exactly why I enjoy playing boardgames. As such, I really think this game is MUCH stronger with the full five people, though 2 player seems passable enough.


Wyrtt wrote:


And Alpha syndrome is a strong in this one. You ether watch how less smart teamates do things wrong or asume command. = in team is almost imposible here.

...

1 player will have big downtime waiting for other 4 players while on his own turn he can do few basic actions with zero strategy.

Alpha syndrome is easily cured in any game by ignoring and disobeying the "alpha" if they get too overbearing. Or just not playing with the "alpha" in the first place, if you're aware of their behaviour. If you play with strangers, I got nothing. That's always gonna have its risks.

Wyrtt wrote:

These games just doesnt offer enough content for 1 player. At least in 2p game you control team of hunters.

Well, Fury of Dracula doesn't have any solo option whatsoever. Or maybe I'm misinterpreting that comment...

In any event, the logic of your criticism seems flawed and very much represent a minority, what with the VAST number of commenters/critics who insist it plays at its best with the full five players.

Are your opinions borne through experience playing the game or conjecture
reading about it?

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Nik Degtyarenko
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I played 2nd edition to death for all those years and coop game like this. Im yet to find gaming group which will be interested in playing 5p game where you have very basic coop interactions.
And ignoring apha is a bad idea. It will bring chaos to the board. Even in reality 1 commander is better than arguing bunch.

BSG is a good example of working coop game. Each class is uniqe. Only you can do your work so you are not just 1 minion you are a character.
Hidden information is a key element. Even if you are ordered by admiral or president(2 alphas created by game rules) you can pretend to obey or ignore them. They might be a traitors afterr all. There is a reason to play as a team but be a loner at same time.
Robinson is another example of false coop game. There is no real difference between playing it alone or ith people.

It like video games. There are true coop games and games where coop means just presence of another player who will just add firepower.

Lovers in a Dangerous Spacetime is a first type. You cant play it alone, game mechanic build around coop.
While dead space 3 or REsident Evil5-6 just tag another character along with no real reaon for it. You feel very minor difference.
And thats not just my single opinions. Tagged coop is a bif problem for video games and its disscused quite a lot. But boardgames suffer from same problem. For someone just running around on board with another people is fun(arkham) for others thats barely counts as coop game.
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Myles Mulroy
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Well, either you're cool with having an alpha commandeering or you're not... From your first post, I had thought that you were in the latter camp...

I have heard BSG is the high watermark for co-ops so I can't disrespect that(the game just doesn't call me for whatever reason).

In any event, while what you say may hold true with your regular gaming group, I do think it's quite misleading to say that this game works BEST with only two players, let alone that it ONLY works with two players. A great many folk (myself not included) aren't at all comfortable managing
4 differing sets of hands. And the aforementioned "arguing bunch" provides exactly the lively experience many people want when sitting around the table.

Each to their own I guess...
 
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Keith Presley
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Coming as a person who is new to FoD (never played any previous editions) I found it fantastic as a two player game. Granted, both of us that played are experienced playing multiple characters in other games, so perhaps it would be difficult for people new to gaming in general. My friend (who played the hunters in the first game) even said he thinks he would prefer controlling all four hunters on his own, so he would not have to share his strategy and his thoughts aloud when playing in a group. I think it would add to the fun, with Dracula having to keep a stiff poker face if the players were either closing in on him of falling for an elaborate ruse, but that is just a personal opinion. The one thing we did think is that it maybe dragged the game out a little with the one person not wanting to rush, but we think with more plays it will be a lot less noticeable. As I said, it was our first game, so we both had to stop and reference the rules occasionally.
 
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John Reynolds
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What length are you guys seeing with 2? Is it possible to get this down to 90 min?
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Michael Williams
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Wife and I are playing together. It's fun. The Hunter player definitely has more to do than the Dracula player though. I think three players would be the sweet spot... we just need to wait for one of our kids to mature.
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Swan Bones
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We played 2hrs on first play through as a two-player. I'm tempted to think it will come in at 90mins after four or five games.
JohnnyR wrote:
What length are you guys seeing with 2? Is it possible to get this down to 90 min?
 
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Randal Divinski
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An interesting issue with 2-player (1 hunter) raised elsewhere is whether the "perfect information" the hunter player has (knowing all items and events of all hunters without having to communicate out loud in Dracula's presence) is an unbalancing advantage. (Of course, this would apply to some extent to anything less than a 5-player game.)

I am thinking perhaps the hunter should play with cards face up equal to 5-#_of_hunter players. (5 instead of 4 because Mina's abilities already require 1 face up card.)
 
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David Williams
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randiv wrote:
An interesting issue with 2-player (1 hunter) raised elsewhere is whether the "perfect information" the hunter player has (knowing all items and events of all hunters without having to communicate out loud in Dracula's presence) is an unbalancing advantage. (Of course, this would apply to some extent to anything less than a 5-player game.)

I am thinking perhaps the hunter should play with cards face up equal to 5-#_of_hunter players. (5 instead of 4 because Mina's abilities already require 1 face up card.)
They have that advantage, but they have the disadvantage of being just 1 person doing all the thinking, so it's much easier to miss things. 2 players can deduce more quickly and more reliably than 1 because they are less susceptible to tunnel vision.

So I think it maybe evens out OK. But difficult to tell, obviously it greatly depends on the players involved.
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APK
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Haven't had a chance to play 2 player yet. Just 3 and 4. But for those that play with 2: have you found 2 player games to consistently bring the game length down to 2 hrs (or less)?
 
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Tim Earl
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apkendrick wrote:
Haven't had a chance to play 2 player yet. Just 3 and 4. But for those that play with 2: have you found 2 player games to consistently bring the game length down to 2 hrs (or less)?
I found the opposite to be true, as the hunter player spends a lot of time thinking about his overall strategy and reading his cards. With more players, they do some of that while other players take their turns.

So far, I think 3 players is the sweet spot here, with players taking alternating hunters. That gives each player enough to do without overwhelming them.
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cheng wrote:
apkendrick wrote:
Haven't had a chance to play 2 player yet. Just 3 and 4. But for those that play with 2: have you found 2 player games to consistently bring the game length down to 2 hrs (or less)?
I found the opposite to be true, as the hunter player spends a lot of time thinking about his overall strategy and reading his cards. With more players, they do some of that while other players take their turns.
Hmm, yeah, that's a good point. I suppose it's probably not too realistic to hope for a consistently 2hr game even when played with just two. I'm sure I'll give it a shot soon enough, though. Thanks for the reply.

I like the game a lot, it's just tricky for my friends and me to find the time to play it! Starting to look at Specter Ops just because of the shorter game length.

(Edit: grammar)
 
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apkendrick wrote:
I like the game a lot, it's just tricky my friends and I to find the time to play it! Starting to look at Specter Ops just because of the shorter game length.
Honestly, even though I'm a long-time fan of Fury of Dracula, Specter Ops has somewhat ruined Dracula for me since Specter Ops covers all the good parts of Drac in a fraction of the time and with a fraction of the rules (though my wife still much prefers Dracula over Specter Ops).
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