Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
17 Posts

Xia: Embers of a Forsaken Star» Forums » Rules

Subject: Economy Wheel Rule Concern rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Kain Phalanx
msg tools
Specifically the rule that buying from Smuggler's Den still has you removing cubes from the economy board. I'm leaning towards that it shouldn't and would like it thought over again.

From my understanding there are two distinct types of merchant, lawful and unlawful. This is important because they should have actually played differently before, but there was no reason to since both could just go back and forth between two planets. The economy wheel finally fixed this issue and I love it. Now what it has the lawful merchant doing is the same as the merchant npc, going to each planet in order. This way the economy board doesn't have any other negative effect to you. But since that route involves two lawful planets, you really don't want a bounty. Even with the smuggler setup (Ghoststalker>Lone Drifter>Long Haul) it's still a needless headache for a number of reasons.

So what the unlawful merchant is good at actually was going back and forth between two planets. Smuggler's Den exemplifies this by being a one-way trade post. With the aforementioned setup you'd be able to exploit a short trade route from Smuggler's Den even to a lawful planet longer and potentially quicker than others. But here's the problem now, you can't do this unless other players supply the appropriate economy.

Perhaps you still think going to the same two planets is still too boring or whatever to be allowed, but another rule from the economy wheel brilliantly already alleviates this. When one type of cube is in demand, there's a 1k credit incentive to trade to that planet. What this would allow the unlawful merchant to do is repeatedly return to Smuggler's Den and follow in the wake of lawful merchants, who should be buying 6 cubes at a time, and get that extra bonus. This is actually fine because the ideal amount of cargo for the unlawful merchant is 4 cubes instead of 6 (Long Haul's shuttle's cube limit is evidence of this), which is 1k less profit. Being an unlawful merchant is already inherently riskier since a bounty means you're a bigger target and sometimes you'll have to risk a planetary shield run.

Also it doesn't make sense thematically since Smuggler's Den is basically the black market. It shouldn't play nice with the economy like Loathe doesn't.

tl;dr Please change the official rules so that buying from Smuggler's Den takes cubes straight from the supply.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Derek Dyer
United States
Iowa
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Quote:
Specifically the rule that buying from Smuggler's Den still has you removing cubes from the economy board. I'm leaning towards that it shouldn't and would like it thought over again.
It's been thought over, and extensively playtested. For most of playtesting goods from Smuggler's Den were "counterfeit", did not come from the economy board, and could not be sold at Loathe.

The final print stuff is pretty close to wrapping up, if not done already. This isn't something that is likely to be changed (again).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ira Fay
United States
New Haven
CT
flag msg tools
designer
:-)
badge
Fay Games logo
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Kain Phalanx wrote:
tl;dr Please change the official rules so that buying from Smuggler's Den takes cubes straight from the supply.
Thanks for your thoughts, Kain. Out of curiosity, have you playtested the current rules? Please keep in mind that I have personally playtested XIA ~40 games, and I'm sure Cody has done way more than me. Furthermore, we have listened to feedback from dozens of playtesters who have played many more games. I mention that just to remind you that we're making pretty informed choices at this point. That's not to say the game is going to be perfect for everyone, but simply that we've done our homework.

Regarding your suggestion, I'm not sure I understand what problem you're trying to fix. You want Smugglers' Den to be even more powerful than it already is? By buying from the Economy Board, players who use Smugglers' Den are limited in some way. If they could buy from the supply instead, then they could by any type of cargo, only limited by the storage space in their ship. With the new Cargo Pod outfits, that can get pretty large, easily 10+ for a Tier 3 ship, even after accounting for a good engine and shields.

We certainly made an intentional choice to limit the power of short trade routes in the expansion, because that was one of the most consistent critiques of the base game. As is, Smugglers' Den is still one of the most powerful sectors, since many of the new missions can start there, and you can buy any cube that's available. I certainly wouldn't want to make Smugglers' Den even more powerful by letting players buy unlimited cubes of any type directly from the supply.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kain Phalanx
msg tools
At no point did I suggest that informed choices weren't being made. I merely stated things from my theoretical perspective and how one particular decision seemed strange to me, therefore needing a change.

Cargo pod outfits are a big consideration that I had forgotten about because I don't like them and don't intend to use them. I can see how that changes things. Thank you for explaining your reasoning.

I suppose my suggestion as simply stated wouldn't work, but it wasn't my intention to simply allow unlimited bulk purchases from Smuggler's Den. I just don't want it to be part of the same economy as the five normal planets. Something additional like even just sharing economy with Loathe would have to be added. There just doesn't seem to be anything particularly interesting about being an outlaw merchant as is, and no incentive to do it, when it seems to me like it's supposed to be an intended play style.

I had offered one scenario where it could take advantage of the in-demand rule if it weren't part of the same economy. Since it is, the cubes necessary to fulfill it will be exhausted. I had also thought that maybe there would be interplay between merchants, cutting ahead to exhaust supply to mess up routes, but that doesn't seem to work. I like the economy wheel and think it's necessary, but it seems like potential is being wasted. There's no point in an economy if the only purpose to limit the actions of one ship.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Derek Dyer
United States
Iowa
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Quote:
There just doesn't seem to be anything particularly interesting about being an outlaw merchant as is, and no incentive to do it, when it seems to me like it's supposed to be an intended play style.
There's no "intended playstyles", or maybe a better way to phrase it is that all playstyles are intended. Either way it amounts to the same thing. Xia is a sandbox game that lets you play however you want.

If you're trying to metagame the system, dissect it, and look at what are the most effective ways to win... That doesn't really work with Xia. For starters, the board state is going to be fundamentally different from game to game, and what is best in one will not be in another. Also as the board is revealed, missions get easier and become a more effective route to FP than in the early game. So always being fluid is the best strategy.

Further, take into account that when Cody started designing Xia he did not have a lot of experience with boardgames. He modeled the game off some of his favorite video games, and developed it from there. Honestly this may be one of my favorite things about the design of Xia. It was designed from the ground up to be a sandbox, not from the outside in as a game.

Quote:
I had also thought that maybe there would be interplay between merchants, cutting ahead to exhaust supply to mess up routes, but that doesn't seem to work.
What makes you say that?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ira Fay
United States
New Haven
CT
flag msg tools
designer
:-)
badge
Fay Games logo
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Kain Phalanx wrote:
There just doesn't seem to be anything particularly interesting about being an outlaw merchant as is, and no incentive to do it
OK, I think that's the crux of your concern, right? If so, we should understand what you mean by "outlaw merchant," and then consider if there are rewards for going that route.

If "outlaw merchant" means "a merchant strategy that involves an outlaw planet," then I can tell you with confidence that there are many reasons to go that route. The new explore tokens, as well as the new Tier 1 ship, often give you 1 of a random cargo cube. You can pretty easily get 2, but it's likely they'll be different. In that case, going to Loath to sell both and get a FP is great.

As you mentioned earlier, cargo types can go in demand, and there's an event that's particularly relevant to Cyber. If you want a particular type of good and the planet that sells it hasn't been discovered or isn't in a convenient location, go to Smugglers' Den to buy it or Kei to trade for it.

Also, there are cargo missions that require a diversity of goods. Stop by Kei to trade or Smugglers' Den to buy what you need, and then get a financial reward and a FP from the cargo missions.

Overall, I encourage you to play a few games, and then I'll be curious to know if your opinion has changed at all. It's one thing to analyze theoretically; it's another to play and see how it actually feels. That said, one of the wonderful things about Xia is that you can make the sandbox your own, so if something doesn't work for your playgroup, of course feel free to make house rules to improve your experience!

Thanks again for the discussion.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kain Phalanx
msg tools
I consider the economy wheel to be a fix to the base game, but those are interesting enough points I suppose. Thanks for the input.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Gipson
United States
Joplin
Missouri
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Kain Phalanx wrote:

Also it doesn't make sense thematically since Smuggler's Den is basically the black market. It shouldn't play nice with the economy like Loathe doesn't.


I would disagree about the the thematic part. Economically, one of the biggest critiques and complaints, about anything that is a Black Market good (illegally downloading music for example). Is that people trading on the black market are killing the demand or profit for the product and there is money lost by those people wanting to trade lawfully.

Although, now I am thinking thematically, I like the idea of marking illegal traded goods (perhaps some similarly colored, but cubes marked as illegal somehow) that if recovered, could be turned in for an additional bounty. Giving players an incentive to capture and recover the illegally traded goods (ie shoot them out of their cargo holds and recover them) to be turned into the law for credits or fame.

So I do think there should be some sort of interaction between the lawful and unlawful ways to do trade. Whether it is the way it is done or not, I am not sure, but it certainly looks like a huge improvement from the previous game (before this expansion, we would often house-rule that if you draw a tile that sets up two planets next to one another that would create an instant 1 sector trade route, shuffle and draw a different tile. Now we don't have to do that)
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Smith
United Kingdom
Solihull
West Midlands
flag msg tools
http://www.youtube.com/user/SmoothCJS
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm definitely in the camp that buying from Smuggler's den 'should' come from the economy board - Those resources have to come from somewhere, so I see it as being that they're stolen goods and hence come from the same place.

I do like the idea of 'marked' goods. You could even have it be a choice - When buying from smuggler's den, get 2 unmarked cubes for 1k, or 3 marked cubes for 1k. Selling the marked cubes would then either be only at Loath or by a dice roll elsewhere (Which on fail would lose you the goods and give you +1k bounty). Additionally, if someone takes you out while carrying marked goods they could get credits for it.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Imelin Cain
msg tools
mbmbmb
ira212 wrote:

As you mentioned earlier, cargo types can go in demand, and there's an event that's particularly relevant to Cyber. If you want a particular type of good and the planet that sells it hasn't been discovered or isn't in a convenient location, go to Smugglers' Den to buy it or Kei to trade for it.


I just played a game that I think exemplifies this issue. I started off with a ship and outfit for trading and maybe some mining. The other player in a 2p game went the opposite direction and discovered Loath and Smuggler's Den right next to each other.

He ended up making about 3 runs between the two quickly, which nearly emptied the economy board. By the time I got to tier 3, there were 3 cubes left on the board and 3 resources were "in demand". This put my Trade strategy in the garbage, and I had to turn to mining. This was still a very fun game, and we love the new rules, but this seemed like a glaring oddity that someone could quickly exploit to empty the Economy Board, forcing everyone else out of the Trading game.

Edit: As far as I can tell, the only way to right that ship, so to speak, is to mine and then sell on normal planets. But at that point, you're almost helping other people Trading as much as yourself, if you can just mine and go sell it all at Loath.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Derek Dyer
United States
Iowa
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Quote:
This was still a very fun game, and we love the new rules, but this seemed like a glaring oddity that someone could quickly exploit to empty the Economy Board, forcing everyone else out of the Trading game.
Good.

So am I understanding this correctly? This was a game that due to a random configuration of events was largely different from most of the games that you've played? That this game required adapting to a new or different strategy than you would have otherwise employed?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Sky Zero
United States
Illinois
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Calinor wrote:
Quote:
This was still a very fun game, and we love the new rules, but this seemed like a glaring oddity that someone could quickly exploit to empty the Economy Board, forcing everyone else out of the Trading game.
Good.

So am I understanding this correctly? This was a game that due to a random configuration of events was largely different from most of the games that you've played? That this game required adapting to a new or different strategy than you would have otherwise employed?


What he said.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Imelin Cain
msg tools
mbmbmb
Calinor wrote:
Quote:
This was still a very fun game, and we love the new rules, but this seemed like a glaring oddity that someone could quickly exploit to empty the Economy Board, forcing everyone else out of the Trading game.
Good.

So am I understanding this correctly? This was a game that due to a random configuration of events was largely different from most of the games that you've played? That this game required adapting to a new or different strategy than you would have otherwise employed?


I understand what you're getting at - that this game forces new and interesting strategies. Yes, it might have been a rarity that Loath and Smuggler's Den ended up next to each other, and a rarity that someone was able to exploit that configuration to affect others' strategies.

But the 'oddity', that I pointed out in the rules, is that because Smuggler's Den allows you to buy any type of resource from the Economy Board, and then Loath let's you sell any type of resource not to the Economy Board, they could drain the Economy Board of it's actual functionality. Now, I don't mind that in itself - that's an interesting twist in the game. But, the recourse is the problem. How do you go about replenishing the economy in any given game? You HAVE to mine, and then you HAVE to sell at the appropriate planet (not Loath). The Buy spaces on planets become worthless until you do. What's the reward for that behavior? Maybe 1000cr. I'd be hard pressed to think of a time when it would be good to switch to mining strategy in order to replenish the Economy Board, then go BACK to a Trade strategy to use it. You might as well stay with Mining, especially when Loath is already on the board and you can just go there to dump your stuff and not give anyone else an opportunity to Buy from planets.

See what I'm saying? Loath becomes a sink with a downward spiral. There isn't a good recourse for it. As I believe Ira or Cody pointed out, you can't just take Smuggler's Den out of the Economy Board, or else they would be able to buy unlimited resources. Then you have to put caps on Buying from Smuggler's Den. And then you're adding more edge-case rules to the game, of which there are already a ton.

We may end up house-ruling this, which I am 'loath' to do. I want them to still adhere to the economy, but both act more like Black Markets, while not making it impossible to do normal trading. Not sure how to do this yet.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Jordan
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
new user
cgrory wrote:

But the 'oddity', that I pointed out in the rules, is that because Smuggler's Den allows you to buy any type of resource from the Economy Board, and then Loath let's you sell any type of resource not to the Economy Board, they could drain the Economy Board of it's actual functionality. Now, I don't mind that in itself - that's an interesting twist in the game. But, the recourse is the problem. How do you go about replenishing the economy in any given game? You HAVE to mine, and then you HAVE to sell at the appropriate planet (not Loath). The Buy spaces on planets become worthless until you do. What's the reward for that behavior? Maybe 1000cr. I'd be hard pressed to think of a time when it would be good to switch to mining strategy in order to replenish the Economy Board, then go BACK to a Trade strategy to use it. You might as well stay with Mining, especially when Loath is already on the board and you can just go there to dump your stuff and not give anyone else an opportunity to Buy from planets.

Surely mining without switching to trade is the worst option in that case? You're just giving someone else a good trade, either to Loath or the +1000cr-per-step trade cycle you rejected. In that situation, you either mine-to-trade or choose one of the many activities that are not dependent on the economy board.

Note that you can choose to sell & buy in the same turn, blocking anyone else from using your contribution to the economy board. That sometimes restricts your upgrade options, but has no movement/action cost.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian Torrens
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
jaj22 wrote:
cgrory wrote:

But the 'oddity', that I pointed out in the rules, is that because Smuggler's Den allows you to buy any type of resource from the Economy Board, and then Loath let's you sell any type of resource not to the Economy Board, they could drain the Economy Board of it's actual functionality. Now, I don't mind that in itself - that's an interesting twist in the game. But, the recourse is the problem. How do you go about replenishing the economy in any given game? You HAVE to mine, and then you HAVE to sell at the appropriate planet (not Loath). The Buy spaces on planets become worthless until you do. What's the reward for that behavior? Maybe 1000cr. I'd be hard pressed to think of a time when it would be good to switch to mining strategy in order to replenish the Economy Board, then go BACK to a Trade strategy to use it. You might as well stay with Mining, especially when Loath is already on the board and you can just go there to dump your stuff and not give anyone else an opportunity to Buy from planets.

Surely mining without switching to trade is the worst option in that case? You're just giving someone else a good trade, either to Loath or the +1000cr-per-step trade cycle you rejected. In that situation, you either mine-to-trade or choose one of the many activities that are not dependent on the economy board.

Note that you can choose to sell & buy in the same turn, blocking anyone else from using your contribution to the economy board. That sometimes restricts your upgrade options, but has no movement/action cost.


This.

If you mine, when you sell, you can purchase from the same planet on the same turn, plus possibly earn a demand bonus. I see the concern, but I can't imagine this happening in every game. I find that winning this game requires you to adjust your strategy on the fly. If someone was "spamming" the Loath-smugglers den strategy, I may me tempted to alter my outfits and go on offence, earn a bounty and put a stop to it. It really depends on the landscape of your current game.

I'll be playing my first game with the expansion this week. I'll see if if I can manage an AAR soon.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dante
United States
Katy
TX-Texas
flag msg tools
The fact that people are complaining that the Outlaw planets are ruining the economy is just icing on the cake for me. Loving this game. Some people see exploiting these planets as a problem, well do something about it. become a bounty hunter and handle the problem. Ignore it and just be an explorer. Just do missions and shuttle people around or research for people. Just don't do the one thing that will help your opponents and then complain that you are helping your opponents. There are plenty of options in this game to get famous.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Gipson
United States
Joplin
Missouri
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
wildinferno wrote:
The fact that people are complaining that the Outlaw planets are ruining the economy is just icing on the cake for me. Loving this game. Some people see exploiting these planets as a problem, well do something about it. become a bounty hunter and handle the problem. Ignore it and just be an explorer. Just do missions and shuttle people around or research for people. Just don't do the one thing that will help your opponents and then complain that you are helping your opponents. There are plenty of options in this game to get famous.


This is spot on!

I have played without the expansion a countless number of times, and several times now with the expansion. The Economy board and the other aspects of the expansion really adds a lot of balance to the game. I had a loath / smugglers den combo right next to one another, and i abused the combo, but didn't come close to winning. Between missions and going on the offensive, there are many other ways to win.

I found my last game most interesting, one player was sporting the swamp rat and went full offense, but took out the NPCs so to draw less attention to himself. He realized quickly that the punishment for dying, wasn't all that harsh, so he sported missles, lasers, and engines with no shields ... equipped pierces and became very deadly and scary. Taking out a ship on just about every turn.

While the rest of us collected a ton of money and upgraded our ships, he got to 12 VPs way before we did, and while he planned on upgrading his ship, and was sitting on the cash, he never did.

By the time we realized what he was doing, we couldn't re-equip our ships offensively fast enough, to try to put a stop to him.

We lost, because we didn't react fast enough. He equipped offensive, which kept our space from him, but he didn't come after us, allowing us to ignore him, and then he got a big lead by taking out the bad guys. Cinderbeard came out this game, and he was even doing us a favor by taking him out ... problem is Cinderbeard is worth 3 VPs!

But I like the fact that the game can take a lot of different directions now, the game before that was peaceful spreading out, galaxy farmers.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.