MacDouglass Kinnick
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Are there any game mechanic related reasons why it would be advantageous to split up instead of traveling as a pack?

Per the latest rules, traveling as a pack is advantageous because it requires less action card draws to get the party from point A to point B.

However, I can think of no reason why it would be advantageous to split up.

Although this is an experience/storytelling game, mechanically, it is also an action efficiency game, and I can think of no action efficiencies that are gained by ever splitting up.

Furthermore, I can think of no risk reduction strategies brought about by splitting up. Even if you stay as a pack, you don't have to participate in an action, so you can still avoid any negative consequences of an action.

These questions get to the heart of how much of a co-op game this actually is. For example, there are plenty of reason in Pandemic for your character to be on the other side of the world as your teammate's character.
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Raymond Dickson
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Off the top of my head, one of the conditions you can get throughout the game is paranoia. To get rid of it you need to end your turn on a space with no other adventurer.

That may have changed since the earlier versions though
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Daniel Wilmer
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MacDouglass wrote:
Are there any game mechanic related reasons why it would be advantageous to split up instead of traveling as a pack?

Per the latest rules, traveling as a pack is advantageous because it requires less action card draws to get the party from point A to point B.

However, I can think of no reason why it would be advantageous to split up.

Although this is an experience/storytelling game, mechanically, it is also an action efficiency game, and I can think of no action efficiencies that are gained by ever splitting up.

Furthermore, I can think of no risk reduction strategies brought about by splitting up. Even if you stay as a pack, you don't have to participate in an action, so you can still avoid any negative consequences of an action.

These questions get to the heart of how much of a co-op game this actually is. For example, there are plenty of reason in Pandemic for your character to be on the other side of the world as your teammate's character.


Ok having reread the alpha rules and recalling as best I can the demo from Essen last year here's my breakdown to pros and cons.

Pro to joint actions

Multiple options to reduce action card draw and make success more likely
Use of multiple Items

Cons to joint actions
Magnifies the bad stuff for a fail
Only keep one idea card per action, not per player
Can Burn through items faster
Gain experience slower (still in the game but now in the adventure deck - presume this will still only apply to the active player)

Reasons to split up
Explore faster
Events may split players up - activate two things at once (will be a solo alternative if such a thing in game) or one way moves.
Lack of a certain item may leave a player out of a certain area
Personal story exposition - My character would never get on a boat with you after you left me to the wolves.


At the Essen 2015 demo, there were lots of decision points as to whether to move and act separately or together. Firstly it was actually quite fun and adventurous to split up. 'You take that side of the island and I'll take this side'... 'No, I'll go and look up here first'. It actually felt like exploring on your own terms. When something interesting shows up, everyone congregates together to make sure they have the best chance of managing it. Travelling is fairly quick and painless once somewhere is explored so there was all the fun and very little negative for splitting up for adventure reasons. But there were often plenty of dangers that would result in shouting for help.

For pure efficiency it might make sense to do every action together but it is so easy to agree or disagree with a decision that players often decided not to join in or move off in a different direction.

As an example; there was one card that showed some jagged rocks/causeway with a turbulent sea. A small island (if I remember rightly) was also visible in the distance. If you had a raft (we discovered later) there was a bonus to draw a different adventure card number but neither of us had one. The demonstrator advised us to look closely at every card before deciding whether to act. Neither could agree if we should go, one player noticed a sharks fin very similar to the rock formation shapes. This convinced some not to go for it, but one figured this was their moment. It didn't end well.

In terms of dealing with alpha players it seems to me this game is great.

Roll on release!
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Daniel Wilmer
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Rereading your post I'm not sure I answered it that well.

The mechanics would indicate that pure coop for every action would make the most sense.

However the presentation of the game is a push-your-luck exploration and the risks for each action are not transparent. There are random factors to the travel events, multiple adventure cards of the same number with different outcomes, varying amounts of success points on each action card drawn. These can all be mitigated with more players but some outcomes are just bad. Sometimes only the images on the cards give a clue as to what will or may happen.

This leads to the human factor - for me the joy of coop games. In pandemic it is easier to see the 'best play' based on odds. The human factor is focused on solving that puzzle and inevitably one player will reach that 'solution' first and then share that with the table. Depending on how this is done an alpha player is easily born.

With 7th Continent, the elements are much more difficult to 'puzzle out'. Of course a raft would be better to cross water if you had one, but not everyone is going to agree whether to stick their hand in a hole (also in the demo). The human element here comes to the fore as imagination and engagement in the story unfolds. There were puzzles of course and I expect after playing for a while decision making gets more prudent. This I doubt will interfere in players agreeing on some things and not others, with the fluid agency not to get involved on the actions they disagree with, quite unlike pandemic.

This doesn't make one game better than another, but it seems harder to reduce 7th Continent down to mechanics.
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Becq Starforged
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Do I recall correctly that one player can "teleport" to the other player for free? If so, then let's say you discovered the use of a particular symbol marked on the terrain, and know that that symbol was three cards back the way you came. Option one might be to backtrack together, then return (6 moves). Option two might be to have one player backtrack, then teleport back (3 moves). Or the "forward" player could continue moving forward in the meantime, allowing the backtracking player to teleport farther.

Of course, it's been a while since I looked over the rules, and some changes have occurred since then, so I could easily be giving a bad example.
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Kristoffer Björkman
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Becq wrote:
Do I recall correctly that one player can "teleport" to the other player for free? If so, then let's say you discovered the use of a particular symbol marked on the terrain, and know that that symbol was three cards back the way you came. Option one might be to backtrack together, then return (6 moves). Option two might be to have one player backtrack, then teleport back (3 moves). Or the "forward" player could continue moving forward in the meantime, allowing the backtracking player to teleport farther.
Of course, it's been a while since I looked over the rules, and some changes have occurred since then, so I could easily be giving a bad example.


Some right and some wrong.

Characters have a movement cost discount (one less action card per involved character) when moving to a terrain card where there is already another character (or a fire figure) present.

But basic movement is always "teleporting" to a (reachable) terrain card, no matter how many (uninterrupted) terrain cards are between. (rulebook page 19)

 
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Even though this is a necro thread, the question it asks is useful. With final release rules I think the only consistent con to always taking joint actions is:

- Negative effects can fall on all involved players.

Sometimes when my kids and I are adventuring, we'll leave a player behind if we're doing an out-and-back expedition to reduce movement cost when we return. But being able to retain character-specific skill cards (a few of which are very powerful) is reason enough to always involve as many players as possible for every action. Unless of course not all players want to take a particular action.
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Becq Starforged
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For clarity,
kribjo wrote:
But basic movement is always "teleporting" to a (reachable) terrain card, no matter how many (uninterrupted) terrain cards are between. (rulebook page 19)

Correct. Note also that the cost to travel is based only on the card you move from, not the destination or any of the cards in between.
Quote:
Characters have a movement cost discount (one less action card per involved character) when moving to a terrain card where there is already another character (or a fire figure) present.

Incorrect. The discount (assuming the characters travel together) is a single card regardless of number of characters either in the starting group or at the destination. (If the characters decide to move individually, then each would pay the cost separately, but each would get the discount.)
Edit: my statement was incorrect. As pointed out by those below, the modifier boxes on all characters performing the travel action can be applied, making it -1 card per character participating. Whoops! That's what I get for playing mostly solo...

As an additional option, a group of characters performing *any* action (including movement) together can choose to reduce the cost of the action by any number, but they also have to increase the number of stars required by that same number. This might occasionally have value for movement, though certainly not in the starting area.

Matt_W wrote:
Even though this is a necro thread, the question it asks is useful. With final release rules I think the only consistent con to always taking joint actions is:

- Negative effects can fall on all involved players.

This is true, though it will generally come to play when you've played through the area previously and have a good idea what to expect from a certain action.

Quote:
Sometimes when my kids and I are adventuring, we'll leave a player behind if we're doing an out-and-back expedition to reduce movement cost when we return.

I used to think this, but I'm not convinced any more. I think the best way to handle this sort of scenario is to explore the fog in the other direction (the way you plan to head after the side trip) to put the tile down (but don't move there yet), then do the out-and-back together, then teleport past your original location to the defogged tile together. I can't think of a situation in which that extra "free" tile of movement isn't at least as good as (and often better than) the discount for teleporting back to the character waiting on the original tile.

Edit: With the correction mentioned above (and below), I think you can get some added efficiency from using an "anchor" character when using 3+ characters in areas with larger movement costs.
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Aaron Bredon
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Becq wrote:
For clarity,
kribjo wrote:
But basic movement is always "teleporting" to a (reachable) terrain card, no matter how many (uninterrupted) terrain cards are between. (rulebook page 19)

Correct. Note also that the cost to travel is based only on the card you move from, not the destination or any of the cards in between.
Quote:
Characters have a movement cost discount (one less action card per involved character) when moving to a terrain card where there is already another character (or a fire figure) present.

Incorrect. The discount (assuming the characters travel together) is a single card regardless of number of characters either in the starting group or at the destination. (If the characters decide to move individually, then each would pay the cost separately, but each would get the discount.)

Each character has a brown box cost modifier, and if moving together, each character can apply their modifier, and since brown box effects stack, it is -1 per character moving.
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Kristoffer Björkman
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Becq wrote:
kribjo wrote:
Characters have a movement cost discount (one less action card per involved character) when moving to a terrain card where there is already another character (or a fire figure) present.

Incorrect. The discount (assuming the characters travel together) is a single card regardless of number of characters either in the starting group or at the destination. (If the characters decide to move individually, then each would pay the cost separately, but each would get the discount.)

What makes you say that, do you have anything to back it up or is it just your interpretation? I think you maybe haven't read page 11 of the rulebook carefully enough.

Since there are some common misconceptions surrounding the characters' movement cost reductions I also quote from the BGG 7th Continent FAQ v1.1:
Quote:
Does the movement bonus for moving onto a tile with another explorer or fire miniature stack?
Yes, when moving towards a tile that has an explorer or a fire miniature on it, all explorers participating in the movement action can apply one or more cards in their inventory and/or hand to help with the action.[8] This includes the special walking ability to reduce the cost of the action by 1. So three explorers moving onto a tile with a fire miniature could reduce the cost of the walking action by 3 just by using their special ability.

Does the walking bonus for moving onto a tile with another explorer or fire miniature work for all types of movement?
No. As the symbol on the character cards indicates it only works for regular walking actions, not for walking through snow or swimming.[9]
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Becq Starforged
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You are absolutely correct; I withdraw my comment.
 
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With the expansions facing the elements and the devourers, I can see situations where I don't want to enter a tile with the whole group to mitigate the cost of leaving it...

But it is indeed a rare case to separate our characters, but it is cool when it happens! I hope the designers will investigate this mechanics a bit more with the new kickstarter.
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MacDouglass Kinnick
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batman14 wrote:
I hope the designers will investigate this mechanics a bit more with the new kickstarter.


+1. Totally agree.
 
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