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The Oregon Trail Card Game» Forums » Variants

Subject: Possible variation? Purchase supplies rss

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Mark F
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Hi all,
The one thing I felt this game was missing was the ability to purchase supplies at the beginning of the game -aside from hunting, that was my favorite part of the original computer game when I was a kid.

The goal was to change as few rules as possible while replacing the initial random supply card draw at the beginning of the game with a point buy system.

My wife and I based the following variation on the number of supplies, the number of calamity cards that required a specific type of supply, and the related ratios. I then replaced the amount of initial supply cards per player with a number of points (coins). The goal was to allow players to draw a similar amount of supply cards that they would with the original random draw rules, while adding a cost/benefit strategy...

I have only tested it with two player games so far, so please let me know if you think it won't work with more players, If there are any tweaks that are worth adding, and/or any other issue.

Variant:
Instead of drawing a certain amount of supply cards per player as stated in the rule book, the players get the following:
2-4 players - 9 coins
5 players -7 coins
6 players - 6 coins

Players then purchase supply cards with their coins (a randomizer could be added to see who picks first if needed - not sure yet - if played in a true cooperative manner, I am not sure that it would matter.)

Supply card costs:
Medicine, spare parts = 1 coin each
Water, bullets = 2 coins each
Clothes, oxen, food = 3 coins each

After purchases are made, game continues with the original rules, starting with player born closest to willamette Oregon.

My very initial card counts seemed to indicate that in total, the amount of supply cards in the point buy variant (per player group) average out to be about equal the amount of starting supply cards per player in the original rules. (I believe in a 6 player game the group had two extra supply cards in total than they would have in the original rules) BUT I SUCK AT MATH, so take that with a grain of salt...


All feedback is appreciated.
Thanks!
Mark
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CP Face
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That's a good idea. I'm going to try it out next time I play.
 
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Alex Johns
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Huntersville
North Carolina
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I really like this and fits perfectly with the theme of the game. I am also no math wizard, so can't say anything about the coin amounts, but still love the idea.

just a thought, what about a conversion chart for trading/selling goods unneeded to forts and towns along the way? I know, every good is needed, but for those who like to count cards, if the calamities left in the deck won't need water, for example, and one person is flush with water (pun intended), would be nice for way to trade should you happen on a town or fort along the way as I'm sure happened in the times. would be nice to plan ahead for the forseeable calamities and not waste two supply cards to trade for the one you need later on.
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Michael Ptak
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How easy does the game become if you just pick the 5 supply cards at the beginning? Is there really a need to assign values to the supply cards if one supply card doesn't stand out above the rest?
 
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Alex Johns
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copied the below from forum in STRATEGY section regarding supplies and how often the are used:

"Ammo

Ammo is always the first thing I get rid of. It can't save your life, and the best you can do is to trade it for a Food card if you're lucky enough to draw one of the two hunting Calamities in the deck. Never pick this one from the Shop.

Oxen

Dead Oxen is a relatively rare condition, but if it shows up and you don't have an Oxen card, it's an instant failure for the whole party. It's a good idea to make sure the party has at least one of these cards available, maybe two.

Spare Parts

A broken wagon is more common than dead oxen, but it can be mitigated by a die roll. Still, it's an instant failure if it comes up, so I try to keep at least two of these in the party's hands if possible.

Food and Clothes

Starvation and Extreme Cold are relatively uncommon Calamities, and they only affect a single party member. I give these about middling priority.

Medicine and Clean Water

There are many Calamities that can be solved with Medicine and Clean Water, but many of these Calamities aren't immediately life-threatening; the party can go a great distance before Measles or Unclean Water has any consequences. Moreover, there's more of them in the deck, and your party is likely to get a lot of them at the outset. It's a good idea to keep a few of them on hand, but they're probably the most likely to go if I need to make a sacrifice and I've already ditched my Ammo."


 
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Jerry Schippa
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Sun Prairie
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I think the game needs currency badly. I like the idea of shopping at the beginning. But I would also say that whenever a town is played, have the supply deck shuffled and lay out maybe 7 cards for purchase and everyone can purchase at this time starting with the player who placed the town.
 
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