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Noah Gadea
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I came up with this variant as part of an upcoming tournament for my game group. Please let me know what you think.

Factions and player mats will be randomly distributed, like normal. However, once dealt, allies may swap factions, player mats, or both as they see fit.

During the game, allies may move through and occupy the allied territory, but control will be held by only one of the two players.
A player can only produce and/or spend resources from territories under their own control.

A Mech cannot transport the workers of their allied faction, nor can they pick up resources from territories they don't control at the beginning of or during their movement.

Allies cannot engage in combat with each other (no star trading).

An attacker may find themselves engaged in combat with defenders from both opposing factions. When this happens, the defenders may still only commit a total of 7 Power between their dials, but they may quietly discuss with one another how they want to allocate the Power between their dials. Combat cards may be played by both allies up to their total mechs in the contested territory, respectively.

Any combat bonuses (unlocked by Mechs), apply as normal. An attacker engaged with 2 defenders can apply their combat ability two both opponents and, likewise, both defenders can apply their combat abilities to the sole attacker.

A victorious attacker still only places 1 Star for a combat victory against 2 defenders

In the event of a defensive victory with 2 defenders, the player with the fewest placed stars places their star (if there's a tie, the player who committed more Power places the star--if still tied, the allies may choose). If one player is unable to place a star due to combat star limits, the ally may place a star by default (unless they're also at their limit).

At game end, the player with the most coins earns their team an automatic win IF their ally is ranked 2nd or 3rd. If their ally is ranked 4th, then allies will total their points together and the team with the highest combined total will be the winning team. This is done to ensure that allies don't focus entirely on the success of one faction at the neglect of the other.

Territory Control Heirarchy:

Most Mechs + Characters > Most Characters > Most Mechs (i.e., If one ally has 3 mechs and 0 characters and the other ally has 2 mechs and 1 character, the second ally would have control)

If still tied: Most workers, structure placement breaks ties.

If still tied, the player with the closer home base has control. And if still tied, no one has control.

Update, Friday August 12, 2016


Finally got to actually try this variant yesterday. By chance, allies were staggered in turn order and position. Rusviet & Saxony vs Crimea & Polania.

Given our relative positioning, we found allies not having a ton of interaction with one another. Crimea & Polania made a point of meeting up and making an exchange of resources, but it seemed like a bit of a little frivolous endeavor than a worthwhile journey. One idea we had: Allow players to move between and thereby transfer resources directly between allied mines. So we both have mines up, I can pop over to my ally's area to boost his defense, to drop off some goodies, or even to simply expand methodically.

Another, more intangible, feeling we were left with was a sense that the game ended all too soon. One idea we had: Change the end-game condition to, "The game ends when one team has placed all 12 of their stars. I think this would further encourage allies to not neglect one another.
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Ken Kuhn
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I would love to hear how this goes for your group. It's an interesting idea for sure.

Two questions:.
1. How often can control shift between allies? I think there needs to be more rules around this aspect of the game or else your ally could produce and you could use resource, maybe that's the point but I don't know.

2. What is the draw for you and your game group to play semi-cooperatively instead of competently?

Cool idea. Thanks
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Christian B
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This is pretty neat. I've had a similar idea to this, but after I started sorting through "control of territory" rules like these, I quickly scaled back down to these simple adjustments:
Play as normal, with the following exceptions:

the team with the highest average score wins;
Limit 1 Star from Combat against each player.

So "Star swapping" would be allowed between allies, but only once. It's more of a "successful negotiation" than a successful combat. All the same factors are considered: retreating workers = loss of popularity; "losing" faction must reveal at least one power to draw compensatory combat card, etc.
(Note that there is still a 2-star total limit for stars achieved for combat, except for the Saxony player; these are unchanged. This does however create a 3-star total limit for Combat for Saxony in a 2v2 game. I'll have to evaluate if this "under-powers" Saxony- but I suspect not. Saxony could still achieve up to 5 stars altogether from combat and objectives, as opposed to the usual 3.)

With the Averaged scoring, it may even be feasible to play 2 vs 3, or possibly 2v2v1, but I'll have to sift through these, and if there are more- or less- balanced combinations of factions &/or player mats for teams.

Using these rules, I'm toying with the idea of a slightly "Axis & Allies"-themed team game once the expansion comes out: Saxony and Togawa, vs Rusviet and Albion...
whistle

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Noah Gadea
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kuhnk wrote:
I would love to hear how this goes for your group. It's an interesting idea for sure.

Two questions:.
1. How often can control shift between allies? I think there needs to be more rules around this aspect of the game or else your ally could produce and you could use resource, maybe that's the point but I don't know.

2. What is the draw for you and your game group to play semi-cooperatively instead of competitively? (*ftfy*)

Cool idea. Thanks


1. The answer to this question and this issue is addressed in the original post. It would shift as often as the unit quantity in a given territory shifts. If Ally A has 2 mechs in a territory and Ally B has 1, and Ally A leaves, then the territory control is relinquished to Ally B. A player can only produce and/or spend resources from a territory they control. So if a player doesn't control the territory, they can't spend those resources even if their ally could.

2. I often feel like there aren't enough team v team games in the hobby. In this instance, however, I wanted to plan a Scythe tournament, but only about half of the guys in my game group are all that familiar with the game. I figured co-op might be the fastest way to make the tournament a reality for the group.
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Noah Gadea
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LuckySweep wrote:
This is pretty neat. I've had a similar idea to this, but after I started sorting through "control of territory" rules like these, I quickly scaled back down to these simple adjustments:
Play as normal, with the following exceptions:

the team with the highest average score wins;
Limit 1 Star from Combat against each player.

So "Star swapping" would be allowed between allies, but only once. It's more of a "successful negotiation" than a successful combat. All the same factors are considered: retreating workers = loss of popularity; "losing" faction must reveal at least one power to draw compensatory combat card, etc.
(Note that there is still a 2-star total limit for stars achieved for combat, except for the Saxony player; these are unchanged. This does however create a 3-star total limit for Combat for Saxony in a 2v2 game. I'll have to evaluate if this "under-powers" Saxony- but I suspect not. Saxony could still achieve up to 5 stars altogether from combat and objectives, as opposed to the usual 3.)

With the Averaged scoring, it may even be feasible to play 2 vs 3, or possibly 2v2v1, but I'll have to sift through these, and if there are more- or less- balanced combinations of factions &/or player mats for teams.

Using these rules, I'm toying with the idea of a slightly "Axis & Allies"-themed team game once the expansion comes out: Saxony and Togawa, vs Rusviet and Albion...
whistle



"Team with the highest average" leaves things open for one ally to try to skyrocket while the other is neglected. I specifically sought to avoid that possibility. It's also functionally identical to "team with the highest score" since teams would have an even number of players.

Now, if 2v3 were a thing, that'd be a different beast. I still don't think highest average would be very compelling though. The team with more players would naturally win more often (unless turn sequence was executed differently, so that a turn would pass back and forth between Team 1 (Players A & B) and Team 2 (Players A & B & C): 1a-2a-1b-2b-1a-2c-1b-2a-1a-2b-1b-2c-etc-etc.

To each their own, but I don't see anything compelling about allies "play-fighting" with each other. Players just wouldn't not do that--it'd pigeon hole players into too specific a tactic. I'd be a little irritated to see players pull stuff like that in traditional Scythe, let alone 2v2.
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