Brent Wilson
United States
Montgomery
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The Problem:
The short turns and players naturally planning 2-3 turns ahead is one of the absolute best things about Discoveries. There is never much new information at the start of your turn so everyone knows what they are doing and things move very quickly... until someone completes a big journal action and earns an extra turn. Now they have to roll a bunch of dice, deal out new cards, and figure out what their next 2-4 actions will be based on what they dealt and what they rolled while everyone else sits and waits.

Background:
I'm typically very hesitant to suggest and/or play variants to games that I don't have a lot of experience with, but the timing of the bonus turn provided by exploring two cards feels jarring to me. It's bad enough that it breaks the whole cadence of the game. It's even worse that the player causing the delay is the one who just had a "big" turn-- not the person you'd have the most compassion for.

This issue must have come up in playtesting so I'd love to hear from those closer to the development to see what the general feeling about this was.

My Fix:
When you explore two cards in a single turn, take an "extra turn" token (a poker chip or whatever) from outside the game and finish your current turn (roll all your returned dice, deal out the new cards etc). Then pass the play to the next player.

If at the start of your turn you have one of those "extra turn" tokens, you must take two turns in a row.


This change takes the attention off the player with the extra turn, and gives them a little time to think about their newly rolled dice while everyone else gets to take a turn. When the play comes back to the player with the token, they'll probably have figured out their next few actions and be able to take both turns very quickly.


Thoughts?
 
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Andrew MacLeod
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Speedyox wrote:


This issue must have come up in playtesting so I'd love to hear from those closer to the development to see what the general feeling about this was.

Of course, I can't speak about the "general" feeling, since I didn't playtest this with anyone at Ludonaute; but in my playtesting with non-Ludonaute gamers, this was never a problem, and so I never reported it. If you're taking an extra turn, you should have already decided what your new Discovery card was going to be well before you got the bonus turn. Therefore, with the re-rolling of your dice, you should already know the kinds of things you'll need to be doing. All that to say I have yet to encounter this as a problem.....sort of!

The problem I have sometimes seen is that the player who goes after the player who got the bonus suddenly stalls because he doesn't know what to do. He was about to pull off a Big Move, but you've taken two cards in the Reconnaissance area which he had his eye on. "NOW what do I do?" the player asks himself. This can disrupt the "cadence".

I see absolutely nothing wrong with what you're proposing, Brent; but I don't see the necessity for it, either.
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Cedric Lefebvre
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Hello Brent,

I am Anne-C├ęcile from Ludonaute, the publisher of Discoveries.

What I can say about the game flow is that Discoveries turns go quickly most of time. Of course it happens that a player needs more time to think about what he is doing at a special moment of the game. In my opinion it is not such a bad ting to have a few dead times like that in the game. It also allows the other players to "admire" what the active player is performing . During playtesting, the feedbacks of the players were always about how the game flows freely.
I don't think that using a token to postpone the extra turn you get when you explore two cards will help. On the contrary, I fear that it makes the game be slower at one point. Imagine I can get 2 or 3 of these tokens: each turn I have to think if it is the right time to use them, and how many tokens I want to use...

But I will test your idea next time I play Discoveries and I'll give you my feeling.
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Brent Wilson
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Thanks for the feedback Anne-Cecile.

In my suggestion, using the token would be mandatory on your next turn.

I agree that allowing the player to decide when to use it could add time to each of that players turns while they carefully assess the current game state for an opportunity to deviate from their plans.
 
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Curt Carpenter
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I had a simlar concern. But my suggestion is to get rid of the bonus turn entirely. It's already great that you we able to complete two expeditions in a single turn (you saved a turn). Why do you ALSO deserve a bonus turn? I've player 3-4 times now, and it seems like the winner is the player who strings together the most combos. It feels out of spirit with the game.
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Brent Wilson
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curtc wrote:
I had a simlar concern. But my suggestion is to get rid of the bonus turn entirely. It's already great that you we able to complete two expeditions in a single turn (you saved a turn). Why do you ALSO deserve a bonus turn? I've player 3-4 times now, and it seems like the winner is the player who strings together the most combos. It feels out of spirit with the game.
Let us know how that works out for you Curt. I'm worried that eliminating the bonus outright will throw off the balance between long "tough" cards and short "easy" cards.
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Andrew MacLeod
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And when, exactly, are we playing Churchill again?
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Speedyox wrote:
curtc wrote:
I had a simlar concern. But my suggestion is to get rid of the bonus turn entirely. It's already great that you we able to complete two expeditions in a single turn (you saved a turn). Why do you ALSO deserve a bonus turn? I've player 3-4 times now, and it seems like the winner is the player who strings together the most combos. It feels out of spirit with the game.
Let us know how that works out for you Curt. I'm worried that eliminating the bonus outright will throw off the balance between long "tough" cards and short "easy" cards.
Couldn't agree with you more!
 
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