Recommend
1 
 Thumb up
 Hide
15 Posts

Acquire» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Fairly simple? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Pap Qaq
United States
Scarsdale
New York
flag msg tools
I have mixed feelings about Acquire. On the one hand, I think it's an interesting market simulation that does a better job than most. As a straight game, however, it feels like there's a fairly straight forward strategy.

1) Merger bonuses - The early game is all about claiming the biggest / most merger bonuses. This is by far the best way to generate cash early game.

2) Dead money - By contrast, money stuck in large chains is pretty much dead as you'll never be able to cash it.

Ergo, the best approach is to be a meaningful part of small chains and to push mergers with larger chains.

3) Once in the middle game, holding is not as bad as it looks - At this point name control becomes all important as there's enough money to buy out any available shares. From here on out its about claiming further merger bonuses as holding become stagnant.

So that's my general impression. The question -

Am I missing anything?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Kandrac
United States
Grand Prairie
TX
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Perhaps the imbalances that can occur when one or more players capture the lion's share of the new company startup bonuses, simply due to luck of the draw. I'm open to be proven wrong about this aspect of Acquire, however.

Gg
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tim
United States
Frederick
Maryland
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Yes, I would say overall that is pretty much the strategy and if you can do all that you wrote you will probably win. Carrying it out consistently in all three stages as you wrote is fairly difficult. For example, a small chain can quickly grow early in the game by other players adding to it or merging into it thereby tying up your assets.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Brosius
United States
Needham Heights
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Long ago, we used to play with Bernie Norton. He pretty much always won. We weren't idiots, but he saw more than we saw.

I've noticed that the same people seem to win a lot. This suggests to me that there's more to the strategy than is obvious. (I'm not a good enough player to tell you what that is, though.)
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian Bankler
United States
San Antonio
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
"Keep Summer Safe!"
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb

I could paraphrase your comments as follows:
Quote:

I have mixed feelings about Chess. On the one hand, I think it's a great abstract that does a better job than most of capturing the feel of maneuver. However, I feel that the player who better gets an early material advantage almost always wins.

Would you consider that a fair critique of Chess?

Acquire is not as deep as Chess, but my point stands. Acquire does have implicit alliances and hidden information, which Chess lacks. I do think that any player who understands your points will win much more often than one who does not, just the same way that a Chess player who is conversant with pins, forks, discovered checks will beat one who doesn't, and that a player who also understands positional advantages (ala Nimzovich), imbalances (ala Silman) will beat an equal tactician who lacks that knowledge.

Back when there was an Acquire tournament at a gaming convention I went to, it seemed like of the 50-70 players, the final table often seemed roughly the same. Maybe the rest of them didn't understand your points, but I think there's at least a second level beyond what you've described. Maybe a third.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David desJardins
United States
Burlingame
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
There's also a hell of a lot more skill and control if you play with 3 players than if you play with 5 players.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tim
United States
Frederick
Maryland
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Bankler wrote:


Back when there was an Acquire tournament at a gaming convention I went to, it seemed like of the 50-70 players, the final table often seemed roughly the same. Maybe the rest of them didn't understand your points, but I think there's at least a second level beyond what you've described. Maybe a third.


There definitely is a layer beyond what the OP wrote but for me that is the basic strategy. The second or third layer is deciding or knowing what initial chains to invest in and how much. For example, would you invest in a chain that is in the middle of the board or near the edge? Do you start a new chain early when you haven't gained control over the one you just started? These are the second and third levels that one has to adapt to individual games depending upon the tiles you select. The one knock on Acquire is that, the luck of drawing good tiles. It definitely can impact the game but I've always said a good player with a good strategy can be competitive (maybe not always win) regardless of the tiles they get.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tim Koppang
United States
Westmont
Illinois
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
"It's a magical world, Hobbes, ol' buddy..."
badge
"For the listener, who listens in the snow, and, nothing himself, beholds nothing that is not there and the nothing that is." -- Wallace Stevens
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For what it's worth The Long View podcast dedicated an episode to Acquire. They cover the very basics, some of the strategy points mentioned by the OP, and also a little bit of the deeper level.

http://www.dicetower.com/game-podcast/long-view/long-view-ac...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Randall Bart
United States
Winnetka
California
flag msg tools
designer
Baseball been bery bery good to me
badge
This is a picture of a published game designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Bankler wrote:
Quote:
I have mixed feelings about Chess. On the one hand, I think it's a great abstract that does a better job than most of capturing the feel of maneuver. However, I feel that the player who better gets an early material advantage almost always wins.

Would you consider that a fair critique of Chess?

You nailed it.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Kandrac
United States
Grand Prairie
TX
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Barticus88 wrote:
Bankler wrote:
Quote:
I have mixed feelings about Chess. On the one hand, I think it's a great abstract that does a better job than most of capturing the feel of maneuver. However, I feel that the player who better gets an early material advantage almost always wins.

Would you consider that a fair critique of Chess?

You nailed it.


This is only true if one ignores the myriad of gambits where one player gains a strategic advantage via the sacrifice of a pawn, or even a minor piece.

Gg
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Pap Qaq
United States
Scarsdale
New York
flag msg tools
Gamegrunt wrote:
Barticus88 wrote:
Bankler wrote:
Quote:
I have mixed feelings about Chess. On the one hand, I think it's a great abstract that does a better job than most of capturing the feel of maneuver. However, I feel that the player who better gets an early material advantage almost always wins.

Would you consider that a fair critique of Chess?

You nailed it.


This is only true if one ignores the myriad of gambits where one player gains a strategic advantage via the sacrifice of a pawn, or even a minor piece.

Gg


Exactly and my immediate thought on reading the comment.

In chess there is material, initiative, position. You're missing a lot of the game if you focus on material.

However I agree that your general point is valid and I also anticipated that in posting my comment. Summarizing basic strategy for a game doesn't mean that there isn't a lot of "game" still to be played!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Pap Qaq
United States
Scarsdale
New York
flag msg tools
BoJack Horseman wrote:
I don't really understand why you're in two minds though. Acquire is what it is, a very streamlined, Classic and thematic game about managing investments with a layer of geometric placement.


Agreed as well and I think your post really hits on the key issue - it is an interesting game with a reasonably straight forward general strategies but a lot of wrinkles both on the strategic and tactical level. Simplicity can be a benefit as it focuses attention as long as there is room within the game to maneuver.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff W
United States
Parker
Colorado
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Yes, the strategies you outlined are fairly simple, but some people don't understand the ramifications of the strategies.

For example, I see people expanding their own companies (companies that they have the majority or 2nd majority) early in the game. You absolutely don't want to do this (unless you have some underlying plan). This is bad for several reasons:

1. The likelihood of your company being merged just went down because it just increased in size.
2. You just played a potential merger piece.

Both points are subtle but very important. You want to increase the size of the companies that are around your company, so that your company can be merged into them (not the other way around). And that if you hold on to pieces that grow companies, they sometimes turn into merger pieces.

I see a lot of people griping about being unlucky and unable to draw merger tiles. Yet, I see them constantly playing tiles that expand companies.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Darcy Dueck
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Go try your "simple strategy" at http://acquire.tlstyer.com/

Those guys will blast you out of the water. Acquire is a detailed-strategy tile laying game. You will be lucky to get more than $20,000 against these people.
 
 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.