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Subject: Drafting Military cards like civil cards. rss

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CHAPEL
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In our last playing of a full game, one of the players came up with the thought of why we can't draft military cards like civil card. In this way the military deck isn't as luck driven. The idea(which could use some tweaks) was:

pull the top 6 cards from the military deck.

the first three would cost the normal 1 military action, the next three would cost 2 military actions, then it the top card would go to discard(or maybe not), then the military cards would shift left like the civil actions for and filled for the next player.

This way you have the same level of control as you would get in selecting the military cards as the civil cards. I don't think this would add too much more time than it already takes.

Any ideas?

Added: Some players may want to keep their selection private, so maybe also allowing the player to instead pull from the top of the deck like normal, if nothing is liked.

DISCLAIMER: Not that I think it works the way it is now, just a tweak to mitigate luck a little.
 
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Geeky McGeekface
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It's an interesting idea, Michael. You'll probably have to try it out to see if it needs any tweaks. For example, will the military cards recycle too quickly (I'm assuming you'll have to burn the card at the top of the list, to keep things from stagnating)? Will Age III events be automatically snapped up? Will knowledge of the picks (such as Defense cards) make the game too calculating? Above all, will it lead to too much downtime?

Actually, you might want to require that each player's first pick come from the face down stack. I say this not because I crave hidden information, but to make things like aggression and colonization less deterministic.

If you try it out, let us know how it works.
 
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Dave Eisen
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I really have no problems with the military cards mechanic (although I'm not sure I agree with the limit on 3 cards per turn) and don't want to slow the game down with a drafting mechanic.
 
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Tim Fiscus
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dkeisen wrote:
I really have no problems with the military cards mechanic (although I'm not sure I agree with the limit on 3 cards per turn) and don't want to slow the game down with a drafting mechanic.


I've gotta agree here. This game is one of my favorites (see my review "Czech It Out" for more), but there is a lot of fun tension surrounding the unknown military holdings of the other player. Is he/she holding a defense or colonization card? What about Agressions? If I know that my opponent hasn't "drafted" any agressions, I can let my military lapse a bit. I don't think I like that change, nor the inevitable length that this variant would add.
 
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CHAPEL
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Larry Levy wrote:
It's an interesting idea, Michael. You'll probably have to try it out to see if it needs any tweaks. For example, will the military cards recycle too quickly (I'm assuming you'll have to burn the card at the top of the list, to keep things from stagnating)? Will Age III events be automatically snapped up? Will knowledge of the picks (such as Defense cards) make the game too calculating? Above all, will it lead to too much downtime?

Actually, you might want to require that each player's first pick come from the face down stack. I say this not because I crave hidden information, but to make things like aggression and colonization less deterministic.

If you try it out, let us know how it works.


Great questions. I figure at first you'll have 2 military actions. You are right burning the first card may not go over well, as it may burn through to quickly. Maybe instead bury it to the bottom of the current age deck, so that it will have to come back up later if the age doesn't end.


Does this take some of the tension out of the game? Well depends on what you are looking for. If you know a person has an aggression, you will plan accordingly, or if you know he has defense,you may play differently. The way it is now, you just "hope" one way or another(which is fine), and try and play a well rounded defense/offense. This is just an idea, for groups that want to have more control of the determinism of the military actions. Which yes, may add more time to a players turns.

This is just another way to approach it. Is it a good idea, who knows? Just different. I was just addressing questions we have in "our" group. Some may not like this idea. I'm certainly not trying to fix something that's broke, on the contrary, I like it the way it is.

Here is a quick layout I made for what I was stating above:

 
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Mark Hamzy
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dkeisen wrote:
I really have no problems with the military cards mechanic (although I'm not sure I agree with the limit on 3 cards per turn) and don't want to slow the game down with a drafting mechanic.


You need a well balanced draw of the military deck: cards for defense, cards for offense, victory cards, etc.

In the last game that I have played, I never drew a defense card! Which is painful, for both defense and colonization.

In other games that I have played, I have not drawn a good tactics card to match my military. I remember another person drew tons of useless tactics cards.

Yes, it may slow the game down. However, the game is slow to begin with. And people are used to the drafting mechanic already.

Maybe another alternative is to create four individual military decks. It could give people a better chance to draw what they need.
 
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Mik Svellov
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dkeisen wrote:
I really have no problems with the military cards mechanic (although I'm not sure I agree with the limit on 3 cards per turn) and don't want to slow the game down with a drafting mechanic.


I believe the limit was installed to avoid players from getting too strong. You can hold and use a lot Colononisation cards before you are forced to discard next round.

Removing the limit may need the discard segment to be moved.

But all in all am I satisfied with the way the game runs and feel no need to tinker with it. Uless someone comes up with ways to reduce the overall playing time, which another drafting round will not do.
 
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CHAPEL
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Great Dane wrote:


But all in all am I satisfied with the way the game runs and feel no need to tinker with it. Uless someone comes up with ways to reduce the overall playing time, which another drafting round will not do.


We've gotten our 4 player Advanced game to under 2 hours. So what's the issue there?
 
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That's tremendous, Michael, and good news for the rest of us. Of course, the real way to play is the Full game , but based on your Advanced game time, you should be able to squeeze in a 4-player Full game in 3 hours or a bit more, which is fantastic. I don't necessarily see us reducing our usual 4-hour duration for a 3-player Full game by much, but it's nice to see that some groups can really zip through the game. No wonder you're considering things like Military card drafting!
 
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CHAPEL
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Larry Levy wrote:
That's tremendous, Michael, and good news for the rest of us. Of course, the real way to play is the Full game , but based on your Advanced game time, you should be able to squeeze in a 4-player Full game in 3 hours or a bit more, which is fantastic. I don't necessarily see us reducing our usual 4-hour duration for a 3-player Full game by much, but it's nice to see that some groups can really zip through the game. No wonder you're considering things like Military card drafting!


Our first full game was 6 hours. But then again my first game of Die Macher was over six hours! I think with four experienced(& Non AP players ) players a full game can take 4 hours or less.

This variant may not take off well it sounds. But I did like your Age III VP variant, which I will try to get played in the next full game.
 
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Mik Svellov
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MWChapel wrote:
We've gotten our 4 player Advanced game to under 2 hours. So what's the issue there?

The issue being that *I* am not playing with your group!


And I would probably slow your game down anyway.
I actually enjoy taking my time and see what my fellow players are up to. And that means we can't save time tidying up while the next player takes his turn.

And when we know the game well enough to play it without pausing for thought we will find it boring and instantly throw ourselves upon the next new game instead...
laugh
 
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Tom Scull
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I would love to try this tweak out in the near future.
But I would also suggest a variant that my group came up with that works well.
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/1608131

When we lasted played with this tweak it seem to have a nice balanced draw between players.
Also creates a great flow of events in the final turns.
It doesn't slow down the game at all.

Give it a try.

 
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Daniel Becerra Aller
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Just to keep the uncertainty of the cards drafted, mayb you can just use the same variant Michael put out, but every other card will be face down.
I mean, you will always have 2 face-up and three face-down cards on the track.

So, if there's a card you want, you can pic it up knowing than the other players will know what it is. But you can always take the face-down cards instead.


 
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