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Subject: Minimal number of place tiles per player number rss

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Alexandre Santos
Belgium
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Limiting the number of available place tiles drastically enhances Orléans re-playability by changing the game conditions and the viable strategies at each play.

It also offers the advantage of lowering analysis paralysis and downtime by limiting the amount of interactions to take into account during play.

In order to maximize these advantages while avoiding degrading the game experience, I would like to find what is the minimal number of place tiles one should draw per player count.

A popular variant at 2p is to take away half of the I and II tiles, which leaves 5 tiles of both type I and II tiles (5 tiles /player). I suppose that this variant has been sufficiently tested to be considered viable (if you think otherwise please comment)

On the other hand by taking into account the drafting rules (allowing the exclusion of one place tile / player with a total of 20 place tiles in the base game), it would seem that 8 type I and 8 type II tiles is a viable count for a 4p game (and thus 4 tiles/player). I don't know if this could be extended to 5 players (3 tiles per player).

Based on this, I'm wondering if the following numbers of place tiles would be viable:

1p - 8 tiles (4 type I and 4 type II) - 8 tiles/player
2p - 10 tiles (5 type I and 5 type II) - 5 tiles/player
3p - 12 tiles (6 type I and 6 type II) - 4 tiles/player
4p - 14 tiles (7 type I and 7 type II) - 3.5 tiles/player
5p - 15 tiles (8 type I and 7 type II) - 3 tiles/player

I left higher tile numbers/p at lower player counts in order to preserve sufficient play depth through place tile comboing, since the total number of tiles is sufficiently reduced to bring about re-playability and lower AP.

Do these numbers seem correct to you, or one could further lower (or increase) the number of place tiles as specific player counts?

It seems to me that place tile reduction starts degrading the game experience if a specific tile draw only allows one obvious dominant strategy that will be developed by the first player that can snag a certain tile because of turn order, while the other players (or some players) are unable to develop viable alternative or compensatory strategies.

Do you see other issues appearing with a low number of place tiles?
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Aernout Casier
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AlexFS wrote:
Do you see other issues appearing with a low number of place tiles?

Yes, it means whoever goes for a tile strategy first will probably be the only one going for any.

There are so many tiles available, that I do not see any problem in simply taking some at random, rather than limiting their number for all.
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Alexandre Santos
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AernoutMJC wrote:
AlexFS wrote:
Do you see other issues appearing with a low number of place tiles?

Yes, it means whoever goes for a tile strategy first will probably be the only one going for any.


Yep, this is what I was alluding to. The question is how to minimize this problem while preserving the advantages of a low tile number.

Quote:
There are so many tiles available, that I do not see any problem in simply taking some at random, rather than limiting their number for all.


The issue is first to define what is "some at random". As for the problem it's as I mentioned : low tile number reduces AP and increases re-playability.

Yesterday I played the "dignitary" solo scenario, which removes nearly half of the tiles available, and draws randomly 5 type I and 5 type II tiles, which is 1 more tile for each type from what I was suggesting for 1p games.

The result seemed to allow different strategies to be developed, for instance with 3 sources of income, 2 knowledge producing tiles, automation, etc.
 
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This is great, thanks for sharing.. I would like to mix this with some sort of way to randomize the tiles each round as the game goes on.
 
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Damon Asher
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Jefferson
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I think it is important for the strategy of the game that you can see all the tiles that are available at the outset. However, I also don't like always having so many to choose from, especially once you add some expansions. I think a nice balance between variability/strategy/decision space is to randomly use 8 I and 8 II tiles, regardless of player count. This approximates the official "expert variant" of the base game, without the tedious process of players having to choose which tiles to exclude.
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drasher25 wrote:
I think it is important for the strategy of the game that you can see all the tiles that are available at the outset. However, I also don't like always having so many to choose from, especially once you add some expansions. I think a nice balance between variability/strategy/decision space is to randomly use 8 I and 8 II tiles, regardless of player count. This approximates the official "expert variant" of the base game, without the tedious process of players having to choose which tiles to exclude.


I don't think it would hurt the game at all considering how many there are. I think maybe displaying 4 each round then refilling them from a face down stack once one is purchased would be interesting.
 
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