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Subject: House rule: 5 lira for Merchant Encounter instead of 2 lira. rss

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VJKRGN KL
Malaysia
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We find the 2 lira payment on merchant encounter (meeting another already existing merchant on a tile) is hardly a deterrent.

We are now thinking of increasing the payment to 5 lira. Hopefully this would improve the game and influence a lot of tactics in the game. Any thoughts?
 
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Mike Aust
United States
Bloomington
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vjkrgn wrote:
We find the 2 lira payment on merchant encounter (meeting another already existing merchant on a tile) is hardly a deterrent.

We are now thinking of increasing the payment to 5 lira. Hopefully this would improve the game and influence a lot of tactics in the game. Any thoughts?


What if it was an incremental increase, i.e. it starts at 2, but increases the more gems you get? It could be 2+(gems*2) or gems +2 for cost. I think 5 at the start of the game would be pretty steep.
 
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VJKRGN KL
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mlaust10 wrote:
vjkrgn wrote:
We find the 2 lira payment on merchant encounter (meeting another already existing merchant on a tile) is hardly a deterrent.

We are now thinking of increasing the payment to 5 lira. Hopefully this would improve the game and influence a lot of tactics in the game. Any thoughts?


What if it was an incremental increase, i.e. it starts at 2, but increases the more gems you get? It could be 2+(gems*2) or gems +2 for cost. I think 5 at the start of the game would be pretty steep.


Good suggestion but anything incremental makes it harder to track. Can be 5 lira if the cash with the player is 5 or more and if it's less than 5, it can be 2. If it's harder, it's fine as that will make players look for alternative solutions and that's where the game gets interesting.

When you have a filled your wheelbarrows with storage spaces and frequently visit the markets, the cash balance is always about 15-20 coins, so the 2 lira doesn't mean anything. Whereas 5 lira can have an influence on their plans.
 
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Der Einsielder
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vjkrgn wrote:
We find the 2 lira payment on merchant encounter (meeting another already existing merchant on a tile) is hardly a deterrent.

We are now thinking of increasing the payment to 5 lira. Hopefully this would improve the game and influence a lot of tactics in the game. Any thoughts?



Why should it be "deterrent"?

Merchant love to trade - they do not want to be deterrent (otherwise they make no business).


From a gaming point of view:
The idea behind is not to block out others completely - this could kick others completely out of the game. This is not intended.
It's just intended to make that move a little harder.

And by the way: If A gives B 2 lira A now has 4 lira more compared to B. That's nearly as good a the 5 lira action card...

From my games: Recently I was delayed 2 rounds from finishing the game by this rule. Due to this I only finished 3rd instead of 1st...

Conclusion: Absolutely no need to change this rule.
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VJKRGN KL
Malaysia
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Einsiedler wrote:
vjkrgn wrote:
We find the 2 lira payment on merchant encounter (meeting another already existing merchant on a tile) is hardly a deterrent.

We are now thinking of increasing the payment to 5 lira. Hopefully this would improve the game and influence a lot of tactics in the game. Any thoughts?



Why should it be "deterrent"?

Merchant love to trade - they do not want to be deterrent (otherwise they make no business).


From a gaming point of view:
The idea behind is not to block out others completely - this could kick others completely out of the game. This is not intended.
It's just intended to make that move a little harder.

And by the way: If A gives B 2 lira A now has 4 lira more compared to B. That's nearly as good a the 5 lira action card...

From my games: Recently I was delayed 2 rounds from finishing the game by this rule. Due to this I only finished 3rd instead of 1st...

Conclusion: Absolutelgy no need to change this rule.


Well, deterrents are basic elements of game mechanics. While there are multiple options and routes, the risk and reward should be suitable attached or else everyone will have the same route and approach and the game gets stale. The 2 lira charge makes a difference in the early part of the game but in the second half, if you exploit the generous markets, you're gonna be rolling in money and then the 2 Lira thing doesn't even matter and stack up goods, sell goods and buy rubies in a loop.

Don't know how this works in 3-player games. Have only played 2-player games.
 
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Joel L
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In my experience the 2 lira makes a difference at every stage of the game. Early game it's obvious because every player is short on money. Late game players have more money, but they are trying to buy more expensive things (i.e. rubies). I've seen on more than one occasion a player blocked from buying a ruby because they needed 2 more lira.
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David Tolin
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Beaumont
Texas
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I'm with the others--I don't think this rule needs to be changed. In my experience, the game is extremely tight. The win is usually down to a single turn, and everyone is very close. Missing out on a tile or action in the early game due to the 2 Lira penalty is all it takes to move you from 1st place to 2nd or 3rd.

The game seems very balanced, as is, to me. But I've only played with 4 players. Never with 2.
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Sean Geraghty
Ireland
Kilkenny
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It's your game, play how you want. However, I think the rule is fine as is.

This should be moved to variants.
 
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