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Subject: A few clarifying questions rss

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Michael Ross
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Hello all,

I recently discovered and started playing Republic of Rome. I have played a couple times and read the rules (both living and stock) but I just want to make sure I was playing correctly.

1. I know the rules state that you may only have 5 intrigue cards in your hand, is there a limit on the number of senators in your faction?

2. Situation: If you have the 1st Punic War activated by Hannibal and then on the next turn you draw the 2nd Punic War (it goes face down in inactive wars until next turn). Next turn both wars are active with the multiplier with the commander bonus. If you defeat the 1st Punic war Hannibal transfers to the 2nd Punic War correct? If you only attacked the 1st Punic War would the Second Punic War be considered unprosecuted?

3. For assassination attempts, have you heard of any clever way to hide who has made the attempt (if playing in person)? The rules say you should announce the target and the senator making the attempt, however this kind of takes away the suspense and the overall idea of attempting an assassination.

Thanks for any insights!
 
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Mattias Elfström
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1. No limit
2. Sounds correct but I'd have to check the rules (are you playing AH or VG version?)
3. The assassination of Caesar was pretty public...
 
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Ronald Tin
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1. There is no senator limit.

2. I assume you mean prosecuting First Punic War in the same turn when Second Punic War is drawn.
2a. Practically yes but the actual sequence is slightly different. When you defeat First Punic War, Second Punic War does not exist. Therefore Hannibal goes to the Curia. When you eventually flip over Second Punic War, Hannibal immediately pairs with it. (Valley Games version had a different timing with AH living rules, if I remember correctly)
2b. Only face up active wars go to unprosecuted War at the end of combat phase. The delayed matching War is not yet active, so it stays face down.

3. Does not seem necessary to me. Maybe you could write down the senator ID on a piece of paper?
 
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Michael Ross
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Thanks all!

It looks as though I am grasping the rules correctly. My thinking on question #3 is:

If I announce that my senator is going to try and assassinate a senator of someone else, the whole table knows I am trying to assassinate others whether I succeed or not; get caught or not. Which obviously impacts my relationship with the rest of the table (positive or negative)

If compared to a real life scenario: this would be like the senators of Rome saying out loud "alright Caesar we are going to attempt an assassination." My thoughts are that assassinations are normally unannounced and normally want to conceal the individuals behind the assassination.
In real life they would have the following outcomes:
Successful, assassin not caught-does not reveal the conspirators (ideal)
Successful, assassin caught
Unsuccessful, assassin not caught- does not reveal the identity
Unsuccessful, caught.
The announcement in the game practically eliminates the benefits that come with the identity not being revealed and automatically attributes the negatives that come with being caught. I was thinking maybe during the Senate phase you could have "assassination envelopes" which every person turns in during this phase. If no assassination attempt is wanted by a player, then you mark the hidden card no attempt. If you do want to try, then you can mark the card with all required information that is needed with an assassination attempt. If the roll >=5 = successful and senator is not implicated. If a 4 = No result and senator is not implicated. If a 3 = No result senator is implicated. If <= 2 assassin caught attempt fails.
 
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Alan Richbourg
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You could look at negotiations in the same way. They would be secret as well generally, but in the game (iirc) only public negotiations are worthwhile.

Whatever the simulation value, the current rules certainly "work." An assassination is a big and dramatic event in the game, as imho it should be.

Another way to look at it is that in reality, every faction knows every other faction is out to get them. It's only who gets caught that matters.
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Mattias Elfström
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Try using the assassination rules as written and you'll see that they work great within the context of the game.
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Michael Ross
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Thanks for all thoughts. Just to clarify: I am not at all complaining about the rules or the game, I think they are brilliant. And Mattias, I agree to an extent: that they do fit into the context of the game.

Admittedly, there has only been one assassination attempt when I have played, so I lack considerable experience...however the scenario was: one player who didn't have the strongest faction tried to eliminate a power player before it was too late. The dice roll determined there was no action (3 or 4) The attempting player was then further ostracized by the power players because of the attempt.

Because of the nature of the game, it is obviously necessary to make alliances and break some at certain times: which is common knowledge amongst the table. Much like the show survivor. The scenario that I have contemplated, was to assassinate one of my "allies" power senator sort of as a preemptive strike. If the randomness of the dice roll dictates that there is no event, well... guess what? Now my "ally" knows at which point I'm trying to steal the game and am no longer working with him. If this attempt was hidden, I would still be able to work "with" him/her.*I agree that this being public knowledge still works within the context of the game as this can further contribute to the strategy of the game (when to attempt etc.)

Maybe I am not making sense due to my inexperience with the game. Thanks for the discussion!laugh
 
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David Damerell
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Assassinations are pretty strong anyway. The downsides are intended to be so drastic that it's only really a viable option when it prevents someone from winning the game.

If you did attempt an assassination to block someone else's win (or likely win) I don't see why the other power players would ostracise you for attempting it. They are trying to win too, and you have taken a risk they would otherwise have to have taken themselves.

If the downsides were not so drastic the game would be full of assassinations making it very hard to get anywhere.
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Michael Ross
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damerell wrote:
Assassinations are pretty strong anyway. The downsides are intended to be so drastic that it's only really a viable option when it prevents someone from winning the game.

If you did attempt an assassination to block someone else's win (or likely win) I don't see why the other power players would ostracise you for attempting it. They are trying to win too, and you have taken a risk they would otherwise have to have taken themselves.

If the downsides were not so drastic the game would be full of assassinations making it very hard to get anywhere.


Great point. It probably had to due with our inexperience, as the player who made the attempt probably saw it coming before we did.
 
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Ronald Tin
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Cmid21 wrote:
The scenario that I have contemplated, was to assassinate one of my "allies" power senator sort of as a preemptive strike. If the randomness of the dice roll dictates that there is no event, well... guess what? Now my "ally" knows at which point I'm trying to steal the game and am no longer working with him. If this attempt was hidden, I would still be able to work "with" him/her.

If you allow secret discussions and private agreements in your games, you could find another faction to do dirty work for you. Payment could be made via money, red cards or a future favour.

I don't do many assassinations because it's gambling when the odds are against you. But if I do, my major concern is not friendship. It's the immediate loss of influence and major prosecution against my faction leader.
 
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Keith Rose
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Did the game designer maybe have in mind the type of assassinations perpetrated against Caesar & Caligula? In these as I understand it both were very "public" attempts (more so with Caesar) with the killers & their intentions being immediately known. Both also succeeded of course, but either way one suspects the killers would have struggled to retain anonymity.
This is a truly wonderful game.
 
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Tom Giongo
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After dozens of games I've understood that assassination should never (never!) be part of your strategy: too aleatory, and if it goes bad, you lose too much.
Assassination is the last and desperate way to avoid an opponent's victory or to avenge yourself for an "humiliation" (when an opponent definetly crushes your faction). In an experienced group, when a player receives an assassination attempt, he already expected it, because he worked hard to deserve it!
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Michael Ross
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TomCommander wrote:
After dozens of games I've understood that assassination should never (never!) be part of your strategy: too aleatory, and if it goes bad, you lose too much.
Assassination is the last and desperate way to avoid an opponent's victory or to avenge yourself for an "humiliation" (when an opponent definetly crushes your faction). In an experienced group, when a player receives an assassination attempt, he already expected it, because he worked hard to deserve it!


Great point!
 
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