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Hero Realms» Forums » Variants

Subject: Solo Variant vs Tibus - "Loser" Variant? rss

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So last night I got punished by Tibus, losing 9 straight games out of 9. I was feeling kind of demoralized as I was going to bed, so while lying in bed I had an idea.

I've been playing a variant of Star Realms with students on the boat to work, where we separate the market deck by color into 4 smaller decks. We then (usually) deal out 3 cards per mini-market (you can also try 2 or 4, depending on the # of players), creating a total of 12 cards. Always having cards available in the color(s) you want adds an element of strategy that's a little lacking in the more luck-driven 5 card market.

Well, I've decided to apply this variation to Hero Realms solo play, and see if this will make the games a little closer against Tibus (the jerk). Maybe the player(s) will actually have a chance now. I plan on using a d-4 (die) to determine which card Tibus gains for that round, with a 1 corresponding to the top mini-market deck on down through 4 for the bottom one.

All other rules will apply as normal. Hopefully this won't make it too lopsided in the player's favor, but after realizing just how much luck is involved when vs. Tibus I was starting to get a little frustrated with it.

I'm going to try the mini-markets with 2, 3, and 4 cards and see which is the best fit for close games. I'm thinking 3 will be, but we'll see.

Any ideas for a name for this variant would be appreciated. So far, in my despair I'm leaning towards "the Loser Variant," since I can't seem to win, but I'm sure there's a better name out there.

Anyways, I'll post some updates once I play a few rounds at each mini-market number.

Cheers,
Ragamuffin

UPDATE: So after playing several games with the mini-markets at 2 and 3 cards each, Tibus seems almost too easy. No use trying it at 4...that wouldn't even be fair. Boosting his life doesn't seem to make much of a difference either, because once you have enough yellow cards, you're gaining more life than damage he can dish out.

I also tried a "Fairer Loser" variant, with only one of each color card in the market, and then rolling a d-4 to determine which color card came out for a fifth card. This way, you'd still only have 5 market cards, but you'd also have selections at what color combos you wanted to go for...at least to some extent. Sometimes you might want to buy that yellow or green, but they're too pricey, so you're forced to settle for blue or even red.

Which brings me to my next point: there are clearly superior colors/factions in the solo game vs. Tibus. Like not even close between certain colors. The following is my ranking of colors when vs Tibus:

1) Yellow/Imperial: by leaps and bounds yellow is far superior to any other color in solo mode. You need the lifegain to stave off Tibus' early assault. It is nearly impossible to win without yellow. In fact, I haven't been able to do it w/o yellow, though I've come close.
2) Green/Wild: a bit more useful than blue for its ability to nuke an action card of Tibus, and for its cycling ability, green comes in a solid second. Honestly, the best combination for beating Tibus is a Yellow/Green deck. Works very effectively together.
3) Blue/Guild: Blue has some card draw and some cool actions, but it's not necessary to buy. Still, when your options for green and yellow are too costly, or only damage with no lifegain or cycling, then blue is a decent option.
4) Red/Necro: red is essentially useless in solo mode. I've only been buying red if/when i have no other choice, or if there is an early Influence card on the table. There really isn't enough time to make the sacrifice ability worthwhile, as you won't cycle through the deck that many times before either winning or losing. It really just isn't suited for solo play (which makes sense, as the solo variant was a Stretch Goal and not part of the original gameplay).

I'm off to try to make the games even closer/fairer, as even with the Fairer Loser variant I still find myself able to pull away. My next idea is to try a "Tibus Beast" variant, in which I use the Fairer Loser setup from above, but add in the Nemesis Beast mechanic (using a d-20 instead of cards for extra damage). Maybe this will give Tibus a chance, as getting that yellow lifegain can get out of control.

Will update to let you all know how that goes...could be ridiculous for Tibus, but hopefully it'll even things out. It will certainly make yellow absolutely essential, but you know what it already was, in my opinion.

UPDATE #2: Well that was dumb, lol...Tibus Beast is way op. Oh well...worth a shot! Maybe with a mini-market deck of 4 cards a piece would make it doable...didn't try that yet. Tried it with 2 card mini-markets. Got annihilated

I think maybe the Fairer Loser variant is the way to go for me...need some more plays, though.

I also found out from another thread that when you draw a blue for Tibus, if you then draw a second blue you do NOT keep drawing cards, essentially chaining blues together. You only draw one extra card, regardless of color. It also, according to these responses, does not trigger the second card's ability...if this is incorrect, please let me know!

UPDATE #3: So apparently that last statement is incorrect. I wasn't satisfied, so I did a little research here on BGG and came across this, directly from WWG website:

3) Yes, you can "chain" blue cards for massive amounts of damage. This is intended- sometimes Tibus hits a massive streak and destroys people: that's his equivalent of "getting lucky"

surprise cry
 
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Matthew Guillemette
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I quite like this variant idea even for a 3-4 player competitive game. Reminds me more of a Dominion or Machi-koro style market. Worried that it might make for more AP, but certainly allows for more strategy, faction-wise. Will try it out this coming weekend and see how we like it. I'm thinking 2-3 per faction, available to all players.

(When playing 3-4 players we usually play hunter, with markets of 3 cards between each player, allowing each player partially shared markets...)

Thanks for sharing your creativity!
-Matthew
 
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Matthew Guillemette
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quick question... how does the red ability work with this variant? (Clear the market)...
 
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Schneu wrote:
quick question... how does the red ability work with this variant? (Clear the market)...


I've been playing it the same way...clearing all cards from mini-markets...with 2 cards per color, or even the "fairer" market (1 for each, plus 1 random = 5 total), doesn't seem to be that bad. With 3 or 4 cards per mini-market, I've found you run into the danger of running through some of the colors.

Thanks for the comments...hope you enjoy it!
 
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Vadim Deylgat
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I played Tibus 3 times today, but always with character packs. Beat him three times, but each time only just. The Wizard had 3 health left, the warrior 7 health and the ranger 10 health (though tibus had 3 different color cards out, so a single yellow would have triggered his 15 damage attack). I can imagine that playing Tibus without a character pack is a lot harder.
 
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Yes, he is much harder without the character packs. However, I did pick them up at WWG Con a month ago. After playing solo games with them, I can say with a fair amount of certainty that they tailored Tibus to be played with the character packs.
 
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