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Subject: 1st 18xx game this week and it's 1817 - advice? rss

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Jon Jones
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I'll be playing my first 18xx this week, 1817. I was wondering if anyone had any general advice as well as a specific methodology for preparing (rules+watch this play-through+don't forget this crucial concept etc)

Thanks in advance and happy gaming!
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Eugene van der Pijll
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jjones8086 wrote:
I'll be playing my first 18xx this week, 1817. I was wondering if anyone had any general advice as well as a specific methodology for preparing (rules+watch this play-through+don't forget this crucial concept etc)

Thanks in advance and happy gaming!

Are there experienced 18xx players at the table? Or is it all new players?
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Ludwig Seitz
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I would actually tend to say: Switch to 1830 or some other simpler 18xx, but since you seem to have made up your mind I'll just say: Good luck! Don't give up, don't play too conservatively. 1817 shines when people are taking risks.

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Edward Uhler
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Advice? Pick a different game for your first 18xx. I pray that there are more experienced players than not....
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Travis Dean
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eapeas wrote:
Advice? Pick a different game for your first 18xx. I pray that there are more experienced players than not....


This.

It's 2-3 times longer than most 18xx titles. It's a lot more complex rules-wise and strategy-wise. There is a lot going on and a lot to consider beyond what is difficult to grasp your first play in what's going on and what needs to be considered in a standard 18xx.


I can give general vague advice for first time playing 1817, but it would be much easier for somebody who's played at least a couple of 18xx titles before.
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Jon Jones
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Ludwig, Edward & Travis - Thank you! any advice will help. There will be 5 other players; all with between 2-10 years of 18xx play... I don't have the option of choosing a different 18xx as this is the title that the core group has played for some time now. I realize I will be in the dark for much of the first 5 or so games but any pointers would be great! Thank You in advance

Edit: Sorry to all for sloppy formatting. I'm still working out posting on the geek forums.

ps - Edward - Thank you for taking the time to make the podcast - it's become something I've come very much to look forward to!
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Eugene van der Pijll
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jjones8086 wrote:
Ludwig, Edward & Travis - Thank you! any advice will help. I don't have the option of choosing a different 18xx as this is thee title the core group has played for some time. I realize I will be in the dark for much of the first 5 or so games but any pointers would be great! Thank You

If the other players are 18xx regulars, playing the game becomes easier for you. At least you won't be responsible for following the rules

Some general 18xx tips:
* Don't expect to do well the first time(s). If you survive until the end, you're doing ok.
* Think twice before buying your second share in another player's company. Unless you like learning by experience
* When in doubt, buy a train (if your company doesn't have one of that type yet). This is not always the right decision, but it often is (and if not, at least you will get to see why).

And specifically for 1817:
* Buy shorts, but not too many in the same company. If you own -100%, there are ways to make you suffer for it!
That's as much as I have, having played it only once...

And enjoy the game. It is going to be an experience.
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J C Lawrence
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Sounds like Stephen Yu's group -- there's some great players there. You're in fine hands and it will be great. You'll be slaughtered, but that's to be expected. Just ask a few questions, listen carefully, watch intently and spend the next year thinking about what you saw and heard. AIR that's a group that usually knocks off 1817 in under 5 hours.

Broad advice? The privates are worth about 50% of face value (so you don't want more than 1 one maybe 2 (if both are cheap)), the 2+ trains are better than the 3 trains, there's a huge hinge point in the game half way through the 3 trains that you should watch for, and you should confidently expect to bankrupt explosively. It is possible that nothing dramatic will happen half way through the 3 trains -- not that you know how to see at least -- but the hinge point will be there and the game will turn on it none the less.
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Tucker Taylor
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Good luck, and have fun!

At the risk of tooting my own horn, I've created a two-page rules summary for 1817 that you might find useful. I've also literally just uploaded a revised version (no major changes) so you might want to wait until "version 1.1" gets approved.
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Glenn Martin
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https://www.boardgamegeek.com/filepage/126163/1817-summary-m...

Here's a summary of mergers and acquisitions that may help avoid confusion.

Also if there are a lot of loans out take out as many as possible. That way everyone can go broke together.
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Edward Uhler
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jjones8086 wrote:
Ludwig, Edward & Travis - Thank you! any advice will help. There will be 5 other players; all with between 2-10 years of 18xx play... I don't have the option of choosing a different 18xx as this is the title that the core group has played for some time now. I realize I will be in the dark for much of the first 5 or so games but any pointers would be great! Thank You in advance

Edit: Sorry to all for sloppy formatting. I'm still working out posting on the geek forums.

ps - Edward - Thank you for taking the time to make the podcast - it's become something I've come very much to look forward to!



In that case, go have fun and expect to get trounced and likely go bankrupt

And thank you for the kind words, I'm glad to hear you're enjoying it! New Ep. Thursday!
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Hans van der Drift
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clearclaw wrote:
the 2+ trains are better than the 3 trains,


JC, can you expand on this please? I have been thinking about it, but just can't see why they are better.
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J C Lawrence
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The 2+Ts rust softly, preserving cashflow and predictability and position, but the 3Ts rust immediately. The 2+Ts are guaranteed to run at least once, but the 3Ts might not ever run.
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Rebecca Carpenter
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clearclaw wrote:
The 2+Ts rust softly, preserving cashflow and predictability and position, but the 3Ts rust immediately. The 2+Ts are guaranteed to run at least once, but the 3Ts might not ever run.


All this and the 2+ are much cheaper.

A negative of a 2+ is the operating order needed to snag one of the four in the game means you're less likely to run the first round of greens, and you may have overspent on privates for the bidding power needed for the right operating order, and you may have had to buy less regular 2 trains or grown up early to afford a 2+. A 3T the first round they're out can be just as good as a 2+. The last couple of 3Ts can be poison. I feel pretty good when my company has 2+T, making people overextend for theirs may be even better.
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J C Lawrence
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That and the 2+Ts may well be running after the 3Ts have rusted.
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Rebecca Carpenter
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I've never seen a 2+ run after a 6T was bought. Has that happened in your games?
 
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J C Lawrence
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Twice. 3Ts -> 6Ts within one OR.
 
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Hans van der Drift
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Thank you... Back to my test map and paper to do the maths.
 
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clearclaw wrote:
Twice. 3Ts -> 6Ts within one OR.


Wow, a very last to operate company could afford a $650 train, and that is after the companies before it bought eight 4T and four 5T? Isn't that over $5,000 in trains in one OR? Was this an ORa? It's totally possible if most or all of the players started companies the previous SR, and or grew up companies that didn't have too many loans already, and if loan interest was low. Lots of variables to make 2+T absolutely superior to a 3T the first OR they're available considering the potential drawbacks of operating early enough to buy 2+. But certainly a plus to thd 2+.
 
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J C Lawrence
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The short version was that a lot of companies were floated (all 20 in one of the games, close to that in the other), loan interest was ~$60+ by the end of the SR and multiple players were subsequently crippled or ~bankrupted.

My subsequent wish and drive for most all games of '17 to tend in that direction...was not appreciated. They're so much more interesting.
 
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Ben Draper
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clearclaw wrote:
The short version was that a lot of companies were floated (all 20 in one of the games, close to that in the other), loan interest was ~$60+ by the end of the SR and multiple players were subsequently crippled or ~bankrupted.


We just had one of these on Sunday.

In an attempt to rust the sole 3 in two separate companies, I shorted them and started six new companies with the cash. Those new companies combined for roughly 25 loans, and participated in a buying frenzy, straight through the rest of the 4's, all of the 5's and into the 6's before the shorted companies ever ran their 3's.

During M&A, I consolidated my nine companies (three old, six new) into just four companies, two of which were spared liquidation the next M&A. So, the maneuver was quite costly.
 
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