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Subject: Any tested variants to speed up Scout? rss

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Ray Zhang
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Philadelphia
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A few variants are posted in this forum but none seem to have been tested much. Does anyone have a go-to variant for quickening the Scout phase?
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Graham Robinson
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cim2phat4u wrote:
A few variants are posted in this forum but none seem to have been tested much. Does anyone have a go-to variant for quickening the Scout phase?


Our house rule* is that no one gets to do a second draw until everyone else (who wants to) has done their first. Tends to be a little waiting for the guy who's wanting to do three or four draws, but it does make it as parallel as possible.

* - Not that we enforce this in anyway, but it is the etiquette of the game for us.

Cheers,
Graham
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Scott Russell
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One thing I've used sometimes to speed it up.
Pick someone that isn't exploring and give them the bag.
Then those that are ask for a number of tiles after they set aside their returns. It really does seem to streamline the process.
 
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Paul Glickman
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therealbuserian wrote:
cim2phat4u wrote:
A few variants are posted in this forum but none seem to have been tested much. Does anyone have a go-to variant for quickening the Scout phase?


Our house rule* is that no one gets to do a second draw until everyone else (who wants to) has done their first. Tends to be a little waiting for the guy who's wanting to do three or four draws, but it does make it as parallel as possible.

* - Not that we enforce this in anyway, but it is the etiquette of the game for us.

Cheers,
Graham


This seems like it would have the exact opposite of the desired effect. If I were forced to be slow on me 4 scout turns, the game would unquestionably slow down. This just just forces everyone to go as slowly as the slowest person.
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Scott Russell
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Another tip is that when explaining the rules, stress that at no point should the person put the bag on his lap or on the table in front of him, but behind his arms. (It's amazing to me how often that seems to be the natural resting place for the bag after drawing.)
 
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Graham Robinson
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Paul G wrote:
therealbuserian wrote:
cim2phat4u wrote:
A few variants are posted in this forum but none seem to have been tested much. Does anyone have a go-to variant for quickening the Scout phase?


Our house rule* is that no one gets to do a second draw until everyone else (who wants to) has done their first. Tends to be a little waiting for the guy who's wanting to do three or four draws, but it does make it as parallel as possible.

* - Not that we enforce this in anyway, but it is the etiquette of the game for us.

Cheers,
Graham


This seems like it would have the exact opposite of the desired effect. If I were forced to be slow on me 4 scout turns, the game would unquestionably slow down. This just just forces everyone to go as slowly as the slowest person.


No, it speeds the game up. I've played it enough this way to know the truth of this. I may, however, be explaining it badly...

If you hog the bag while you do all your draws, everyone else has to wait for you to finish before they do their draws. Total time equals the sum of all the time taken by everyone doing all draws.

However, if you draw your tiles, then immediately hand the bag to someone else to do their draw, they can be drawing while you are examining the tiles you got, deciding which side to build, considering which tiles you'll discard this time, etc. Once you're practiced at handing the bag on, waiting for the bag is rarely a significant factor. The limit is the person who has most decisions to make. We give them the bag first, and it is normally back to them before they're ready for a second draw anyway. (And if they are ready early, let 'em jump the queue - it is more an etiquette than a rule thing.)

Cheers,
Graham
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Ray Zhang
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Thanks guys, although these are more like etiquette rules than variants. I'm asking more about changes to game rules to speed up the game.

For example, you draw only 1 tile per Scout die regardless of how many tiles you discard. Looking for something like that which people have already discovered to work well.
 
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Ryan Keane
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This is more a setup variant:
1. Take all the tiles out of the bag and put them into 3 or 4 shuffled stacks around the table. Place an unused starting tile face down on top of each stack, simply to cover the top tile.

2. During Scout phase, play as normal for each scout die, taking 1 or more new tiles from the top of 1 or more stacks of your choice, and placing any discarded tiles to the side.

3. Then return discarded tiles to the bottom of the stacks.

If you want to better simulate the bag, you need to reshuffle the stacks before the next round. If you want to delay recirculation of discarded tiles more similar to Race, then keep discarded tiles set aside until one or more stacks runs out and only then shuffle them and create new stacks.


Personally, I feel the decision of using double-sided tiles rather than single-sided cards with top-half world and bottom-half development was a poor design choice.
 
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Ryan Keane
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cim2phat4u wrote:

For example, you draw only 1 tile per Scout die regardless of how many tiles you discard. Looking for something like that which people have already discovered to work well.


That would be bad. Then every tile you discard is like you wasted a previous Scout.
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Rich Charters
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We play in the "mistaken" way described by the OP. We pull tiles from the bag once (and only once) per turn.....no redraws. If you use 2 dice, you pull 3 tiles all at the same time (+1 tile for every tile abandoned) and keep the best of the 3. So you only can get one new tile per turn.

With this house rule, multiple scouts only give you better odds of finding a good tile, they don't allow you to get multiple tiles in a turn.

This house rule changes the game, but doesn't ruin the game. It does make the most confusing and slowest part of the game extremely simple and fast....to us it is an improvement.

Waiting for someone to look at 15 tiles for us is a non-starter....we'd be done with the game by then!
 
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