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Subject: Running out of renown tokens in 2p rss

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Martijn Weekenstroo
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Just finished our second play of the game with 2p with my girlfriend and we both really like it. We played with the advanced boards this time and ran out of renown tokens.. we couldn't find what to do so we decided that we should just keep score with cubes. Are the renown tokens limited? And did others also come across the same 'problem'? We also almost ran out of people btw..
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robbin van biljouw
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Same here, we took coins for passing further than 7 renown, as a houserule.
 
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Rob van Dalen
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We haven't encountered that in our two games so far. I guess that at the moment you take the last renown token you could write down the scores, collect all tokens, shuffle and continue with the new supply.

What do you refer to with 'people'? If it's the crew members, I'm quite sure they're limited by the actual number of tokens.
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ParisianDreams
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Re: Characters - IMO if you run out that's it. I've played this with 2P/3P and 4P and each time the characters run out quickly. There are not as many as there are in A&B.

For Renown, it does not mention if it's limited or not. Once the tokens are gone, you could easily keep score by taking 7 coins, since coins=points at game end. I've not ran into this in my 3 games.

Edit: Or as Rob suggests, since I've heard of people running out of money in their games, just re-shuffle the tiles.
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Martijn Weekenstroo
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Yeah with 'people' I meant crew. There definitely a lot less than above and below but it seems that running out of crew just is part of the game.

Like the 'write down score and just reshuffle' solution Take 7 coins also works but coins can be used for more things so might get confusing although its an elegant solution.

Thanks all for the response!
 
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Steve Cohn
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Would love to see Ryan himself or Brenna from RRG weigh in on this. The rulebook actually does say, in small font, on the bottom of page 4:
Rulebook p4 wrote:
Note: all components are limited in game by quantity except for coins, books, fish and wood. (emphasis mine)


Specifically fish, wood, books, and coins are unlimited. Everything else (i.e. pirates, sea serpents, crew, renown) is component limited. If it's a non-renown "goods" token, unlimited. If it's a card or card-like (crew) or renown, limited.

I guess you write down (or somehow track) the 7 points, but no longer take the resources? Though I like the idea of setting the claimed ones off to the side (after marking somehow who had what) and then when the pile is exhausted shuffle them all up and put them out again. Curious what Ryan or team might say on the topic, though!

~Steve
 
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Rob van Dalen
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You're absolutely right that the rulebook inplies that the renown tokens are limited, Steve.

However, I'd argue that not giving a bonus for every 7 renown during play is against the spirit of the game. It seems off to me that someone who generates a lot of renown during the first half of the game can get a lot of nice bonuses, but that someone who builds a slower engine and would cash more points in the later half would be excluded from that in case the renown tiles run out.

Any comments from Red Raven would be nice indeed!
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Dan Harrow
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The one key thing about the renown tokens is that they're not just there to give some bonus. They are keeping track of your renown! The track itself only goes to 6, so when you get the 7th and it resets your marker off the board, and you take the token to record that you have 7 renown.

The bonuses are nice, but the important part is that you continue to keep track of your renown with tokens or on paper.
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Rob van Dalen
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XeyneGaming wrote:
The bonuses are nice, but the important part is that you continue to keep track of your renown with tokens or on paper.


Hence my first post
 
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Dan Harrow
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Rob0Rider wrote:
XeyneGaming wrote:
The bonuses are nice, but the important part is that you continue to keep track of your renown with tokens or on paper.


Hence my first post

Yeah... I was agreeing with you.

What I truly don't understand, though, is how people are taking so long to complete a game of Islebound that they are actually running out of components... in two player games!

If you have enough coins to buy out the buildings, then the game should've ended already. Despite that the freedom exists to play for literally ever, the game clearly wasn't designed with that in mind.
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Rob van Dalen
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XeyneGaming wrote:
If you have enough coins to buy out the buildings, then the game should've ended already. Despite that the freedom exists to play for literally ever, the game clearly wasn't designed with that in mind.

Yeah, exactly! I'd assume that taking the initiative to end the game is beneficial. Although in a 2p game I can imagine that stalling the game might be an option if both players are unsure they can emerge victorious.
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John Burt
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XeyneGaming wrote:

What I truly don't understand, though, is how people are taking so long to complete a game of Islebound that they are actually running out of components... in two player games!

If you have enough coins to buy out the buildings, then the game should've ended already. Despite that the freedom exists to play for literally ever, the game clearly wasn't designed with that in mind.


We have played one game so far where we ran out of renown tokens (we used money as 7 vp markers). I can give you two reasons why we played to that point:

1) the advanced board enables several strategies for generating a lot of renown, possibly at the expense of getting money/influence/serpents&pirates, which slows your building. If your opponent has gotten way ahead on renown, then ending the game by buying buildings may be a bad move, and it might be better for you to get some of that renown yourself before the game ends. So, you get into an arms race for renown and after a few rounds all of the tokens are taken.

2) we like longer play times (60+min), especially with games like Islebound where setup/breakdown time is a pain. Rushing to build, while a viable strategy, would shorten the game to the point where we wouldn't want to play it, so we don't rush.

 
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Dan Harrow
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quill65 wrote:
We have played one game so far where we ran out of renown tokens (we used money as 7 vp markers). I can give you two reasons why we played to that point:

1) the advanced board enables several strategies for generating a lot of renown, possibly at the expense of getting money/influence/serpents&pirates, which slows your building. If your opponent has gotten way ahead on renown, then ending the game by buying buildings may be a bad move, and it might be better for you to get some of that renown yourself before the game ends. So, you get into an arms race for renown and after a few rounds all of the tokens are taken.

2) we like longer play times (60+min), especially with games like Islebound where setup/breakdown time is a pain. Rushing to build, while a viable strategy, would shorten the game to the point where we wouldn't want to play it, so we don't rush.


Yes, but in the case of your first point, it is definitely in your opponents' best interest to end the game more quickly by buying buildings if they have such a lead on everyone else.

To your second point, I'm not suggesting that you should "rush" to complete a game, playing faster or anything of that nature. More accurately, I'm suggesting that the problem of running out of components may often be caused by artificially inflating the game time past the point when the game should have naturally ended.
 
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Jason Monroe
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Anyone contact the designer for an official answer?
 
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Rob van Dalen
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belial1134 wrote:
Anyone contact the designer for an official answer?

Yeah, I just GM'd him
 
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Martijn Weekenstroo
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Hmm we also keep from buying buildings since it just doesn't give you points while doing other things in the game keeps generating points. I like the special abilities on the buildings but I find that having 3 or 4 gives you a good engine and the buildings that are on offer then are just not that interesting to buy.. The real trigger to buy buildings is the card where you can brag about your buildings and then we just convert all coins to buildings and that ends the game.
 
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Kim Williams
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We just ran out of renown tokens in our 2 player game this evening. We ended up using the cardboard wood tokens to replace them.

I'm kind of wondering if their needs to be an additional game end condition.

If neither person feels it's in their current interest to build to end the game then you just end up running out of everything.
 
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ParisianDreams
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entwife wrote:
We just ran out of renown tokens in our 2 player game this evening. We ended up using the cardboard wood tokens to replace them.

I'm kind of wondering if their needs to be an additional game end condition.

If neither person feels it's in their current interest to build to end the game then you just end up running out of everything.


I agree. It's not happened yet in any of my 3 games, as when I saw my husband conquering towns to get money etc. I started doing the same and buying up buildings to get the game over.

I don't find it that big of a pain to set up, personally.
 
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Steve Cohn
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entwife wrote:
I'm kind of wondering if their needs to be an additional game end condition.


Was just reading your other post (nice post!) and thinking the same thing!

Then came back to this thread to see what was happening on this conversation--as the two topics seemed at least semi-related--at least if one is interested in implementing a variant end game goal where running-out-of-7-pt-renown-tokens has an impact of some kind.

My concern with this approach is such a variant where a 2-player game runs out of renown tokens would still be fairly satisfying--the game might end sooner than desired, but still, you will get things done. Vs. a 4 player game, where due to the limited qty these tokens might run out much sooner--the game might end just as you are feeling like you are 'getting things going'?

I don't have an answer or suggestion, just general musings, but the posts are interesting to read.

If there were more 7-pt tokens (next expansion, anyone?), and the game had a varied set-up for X tokens to Y player count... That would actually be quite interesting, a variable set-up, some games you have the 7-pt tokens with books all included, sometimes none, sometimes a mix, same with the 7-pt fish tokens, etc. Once the "X tokens to Y player count" was calculated (and tested) it could potentially be a trigger for end game. But would require more tokens. And testing.

Otherwise, yes, the decision to end the game can be crunchy, as you may have the most points, your opponent(s) may use that last turn to over take you, and everyone is probably going around getting points, and more importantly, having fun!

I've occasionally felt that Above and Below was just 1 or 2 turns too short, if it was 8 turns long, in a two or four player game, everyone gets the same number of turns "being first". Then, if the board was flipped to nearly the same Reputation track but for 3 players, with the game running to 9 turns, and again everyone gets the same number of turns "being first". But both instances will need additional Cavern cards for exploration, as we have run out of those before the end of a normal game, let alone one with an additional turn. And testing. That said, there is a challenge of going second, or forth, in the game, knowing you will have one less "I'm first" opportunity and still trying to best your opponent(s).

So, that said, I wonder if Islebound would work with a similar turn-track type mechanic? Ideally something somewhat symbolic such as 12 turns, one for each "month" (and coincidentally equal amounts of "I'm first" for each player, regardless of count) and then possibly a final 13th turn for everyone (going with 13 full moons in a year for that explanation) but again, will need testing, doesn't seem like enough time...? Perhaps instead of a reputation bonus every few steps (or maybe that would still work, hmmm...), as in A&B, there could be a seasonal resource "bonus" every few turns, a coin here, a fish there, that type of thing. I'm sure it could be twisted into some kind of catch-up mechanic, too, if so desired (not sure I would...not sure it could be done fairly when trying to calculate points for 100+ pt games...)

Anywho, interesting thoughts, perhaps things Ryan himself is already working on as part of numerous other projects once Near and Far is finalized. (And what a great campaign, good for him and Red Raven Games!)

Fun stuff!
~Steve
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Ryan Laukat
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Rob0Rider wrote:
You're absolutely right that the rulebook inplies that the renown tokens are limited, Steve.

However, I'd argue that not giving a bonus for every 7 renown during play is against the spirit of the game. It seems off to me that someone who generates a lot of renown during the first half of the game can get a lot of nice bonuses, but that someone who builds a slower engine and would cash more points in the later half would be excluded from that in case the renown tiles run out.

Any comments from Red Raven would be nice indeed!


In our many tests, running out of renown tokens almost never happened. However, I have since decided it should be an end-game trigger and I will put this in the rulebook for future printings.

If the renown tokens run out, it triggers the last round. Players should keep track of renown points on the track with cubes until the game ends (so they will not gain any more bonuses for reaching 7 renown-- they will just leave the cube on the 7 space).
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Dan Harrow
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mechanicalfish wrote:
In our many tests, running out of renown tokens almost never happened. However, I have since decided it should be an end-game trigger and I will put this in the rulebook for future printings.

If the renown tokens run out, it triggers the last round. Players should keep track of renown points on the track with cubes until the game ends (so they will not gain any more bonuses for reaching 7 renown-- they will just leave the cube on the 7 space).

Thank you, Ryan!
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Ariel & Michelle Diaz-Nanasca
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Thank you, Ryan! We just played with the Advanced boards for the first time last night, and we surpassed the amount of renown tokens by A LOT close to the end of the game. We were wondering if we did something wrong.

The main way we got so much renown is by going to Rockslide for books and renown, and turning those books in at Thundrake for more renown. (We did keep in mind that we had to have enough people on deck in order to buy the books and renown. We think we read the rulebook correctly regarding doing the action multiple times within one visit.) We ended up using this strategy so much that we ran out of books twice in the game and had to use the tokens above the building cards to substitute for books.

By the way, Islebound is now our second favorite game, second only to Above and Below!

Thanks,
Ariel&Michelle
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Jason Monroe
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mechanicalfish wrote:

In our many tests, running out of renown tokens almost never happened. However, I have since decided it should be an end-game trigger and I will put this in the rulebook for future printings.


I have no doubts that the game was heavily play tested, but I'm shocked that running out of renown tokens almost never happened during testing, but quite a few have experienced this in the first month of it being received.

It's almost like there is a rule that didn't make it into the rulebook that we aren't using that the play testers did which kept this issue from popping up. Otherwise, I just don't get why this didn't seem to come up during testing. What are we doing that the play testers didn't?

I still enjoy the game, just a bit puzzling to me
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Kim Williams
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theboardgametutors wrote:
Thank you, Ryan! We just played with the Advanced boards for the first time last night, and we surpassed the amount of renown tokens by A LOT close to the end of the game. We were wondering if we did something wrong.

The main way we got so much renown is by going to Rockslide for books and renown, and turning those books in at Thundrake for more renown. (We did keep in mind that we had to have enough people on deck in order to buy the books and renown. We think we read the rulebook correctly regarding doing the action multiple times within one visit.) We ended up using this strategy so much that we ran out of books twice in the game and had to use the tokens above the building cards to substitute for books.

By the way, Islebound is now our second favorite game, second only to Above and Below!

Thanks,
Ariel&Michelle


Couple this with having the building which gives you a point for each book you gain and you make a large amount of points very quickly.
 
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Kim Williams
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belial1134 wrote:
mechanicalfish wrote:

In our many tests, running out of renown tokens almost never happened. However, I have since decided it should be an end-game trigger and I will put this in the rulebook for future printings.


I have no doubts that the game was heavily play tested, but I'm shocked that running out of renown tokens almost never happened during testing, but quite a few have experienced this in the first month of it being received.

It's almost like there is a rule that didn't make it into the rulebook that we aren't using that the play testers did which kept this issue from popping up. Otherwise, I just don't get why this didn't seem to come up during testing. What are we doing that the play testers didn't?

I still enjoy the game, just a bit puzzling to me


I wonder if there wasn't as much testing of the Advanced side - as far as I've read most of the running out of Renown tokens stemmed from playing on that side.
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