Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
4 Posts

Length x Wit» Forums » Variants

Subject: "Destructo" and "Splitter" token variants rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Kevin Finkle
United States
Oregon
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I have been enjoying Length x Wit quite a lot since picking it up from the Tinderbox Entertainment headquarters a few months ago. One of the most enjoyable parts of the game is the "push your luck" aspect, but I would often go too far and be able to use all but one letter die. Frustrating. To encourage a slightly safer way to push your luck and to create some interesting choices throughout ones turns, I came up with a couple ways to spend banked points and earn useful tokens.

Destructo Token:
At any point before rolling the letter dice you may spend 10 or more points worth of your previously banked tiles from this turn (return them to the bag) to obtain a Destructo token. You may discard the Destructo token at anytime during your current or future turns to destroy one letter die (but retain the destroyed die's multiplier). For instance, you rolled five dice but can only use four of them for making a word. Discard your Destructo token, take away the unusable letter die, add up your word score and multiply by five.

Splitter Token:
At any point before rolling the letter dice you may spend 12 or more points worth of your previously banked tiles from this turn (return them to the bag) to obtain a Splitter token. You may discard the Splitter token at anytime during your current or future turns to use your letter dice and tiles to create up to two words. Add up the points of whichever word is worth the most and multiply by the total number of dice rolled. Do not score the lesser of the two words. For instance, you rolled five dice and are able, after discarding your Splitter token, to use three dice and two of your tiles in one word and the remaining two dice and one of your tiles in a second word. The first word is worth 12 points and the second is worth 8. Your score for the round would be 60 (12x5) plus whatever tiles you had previously banked. Disregard the 8 points from the second word.

I've found these variants add some nice decisions to your early turns. Do I use short words to build up the dice multipliers or try to bank some big point letters early to spend for a token and it's added flexibility later in the turn. In testing, it seemed the Splitter token was a bit more useful which is why I made it cost slightly more of your banked points to obtain. By splitting you were also more likely to use all of your tiles and get the 20 point bonus for running out of tiles.

Let me know what you think and any tweeks which would make these variants better.

Thanks.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dave Myers
United States
Bend
Oregon
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Those are some good ideas for variant rules. You should keep playing with them and see how they flush out.

For me, push your luck should have meaningful consequences; that is what makes the decision to push or not so interesting. If you always have a fall-back, then pushing your luck is not as difficult a decision. In this game I like how I'm basically betting on my own ability to make words from a random assortment of letters. Now, I don't mind mechanics that mitigate that luck of the letter rolls (the re-roll with a vowel tile, for instance), and there is probably room for more mechanics that mitigate (like your Destructo and Splitter tiles), but too many mechanics like this may dilute that push your luck decision.

I like the interesting choices you add with these tiles, especially how to manage banked tiles, but the idea of a "safer way to push your luck" defeats the purpose of pushing your luck I think.

Some questions to keep in mind as you test these tokens:
Should unused tokens be worth points in final scoring?
Do they increase the length of the game?
Does it matter which word do opponents respond to after a Splitter token has been used?
Can opponents respond to "Destructo-ed" dice?
Is the price of the tokens balanced with each other and proportional to end game totals?

Let us know how the testing goes!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Finkle
United States
Oregon
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I think the tokens encourage one to push their luck further than they would in the regular game. I've had times where I pushed to seven or eight dice because I had a token on hand, something I would have never tried normally.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Finkle
United States
Oregon
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Here are my thoughts on your posed questions:

Should unused tokens be worth points in final scoring?
I don't think so. The idea with the tokens is that you have to sacrifice some of your points for the added flexibility that the tokens provide. If you can't utilize them, then those lost points are the consequence of pushing your luck with the token. I've also thought that players should be limited to having one of each type of token or maybe even only have one of each type of token in the game and the ability to pay to steal them from other players.

Do they increase the length of the game?
They don't seem to in my testing.

Does it matter which word opponents respond to after a Splitter token has been used?
I think perhaps just the dice from the higher scoring word should be passed around for opponents to use in their responses. Since there will probably be quite a few total dice in play when a splitter token is used, limiting the response dice will give the opponents a better chance of responding.

Can opponents respond to "Destructo-ed" dice?
I think that the Destructo-ed die is out of play and should not be used by the opponents for their responses.

Is the price of the tokens balanced with each other and proportional to end game totals?
I'm still figuring this out to an extent. The cost of 10 points for the Destructo and 12 for the Splitter seem to work fairly well. I wanted the costs to be challenging to reach and they could be even higher if you want to limit the use of the tokens. In my testing, the Splitter seems more useful (especially with its help in getting the 20 point "using all of your tiles" bonus) which is why it costs a bit more. I've considered pushing the cost to 13.

If you try out the variants, let me know what you think.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.