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Subject: Question on victory conditions and game length rss

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Oliver Kiley
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Hello all! Question about the revised version of the game.

I'm interested in pickling this up but also house-ruling it a bit to make make the game end a little sooner. It looks like the revised edition makes the game longer since:

#1 - each player only has one dragon rune at the start instead of two (the other being a fake, which would also delay the game if you falsey go after it?)

#2 - a player needs 7 runes to win - instead of six

#3 - you don't immediately win upon getting 6 runes, but need to hold onto them for an entire year (through all seasons).

So my question is this: If I grab the revised edition, can I still play using the old victory rules, or will something break horribly?

Moreover, if I want to play an even shorter game - is there a possibility of playing to say 5 dragon runes instead of 6 (or 7)?

For anyone who has played both editions, can you comment on how the revised rules do (or don't) add to the game length?

Thanks!
 
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Garrett
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In short, you can play the old victory rules just fine and it won't break anything. The revised edition is not a second edition, so most things are completely unchanged. The biggest differences are in component composition; the rules work the same.

I think, though, that if you want to play a shorter game, you may just want to play on a smaller map and decrease the number of runes necessary while still requiring all runes to be held for a year. See, the biggest complaint to the old rules was that the game sort of just stopped right when everything was getting interesting. You had games where someone who had a very weak army kind of stole the game from everyone else before major battles were even fought. The Road to Legend rules (requiring 6 runes to be held for an entire year) prevents these sorts of games that fall flat and encourages a final year of war as the players fight desperately to defend or conquer the dragon runes.

That said, I've never tried a smaller board with fewer runes, so that could be horrible idea. I'm just "thinking out loud," so to speak. I may have to try it the next time I play. But if you want to just play with the old rules, they are completely compatible with the revised edition.
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Oliver Kiley
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Thanks for the reply and further speculations

My main group tends to make any game last about 50% longer than most normal gaming groups (in fairness we're all good buddies so get on tangents talking about other stuff - but still...), so I'd like to keep things trimmed down.

I wonder if there is middle ground - play to 6 runes (instead of 7), possibly on a smaller map, and with a hybrid ending where you have to control it for TWO seasons or until the end of the current year, whichever is first.

Anyway, thanks for the your suggestions!

I also have a 6-year old daughter that loves this sort of stuff. This game is way to complex for her, but I can probably make a "kid" version of it where we just build up armies and fight neutrals to win runes or something simple like that. There's so much stuff in the box you could design a dozen different games with what you get
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Scott Lewis
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Mezmorki wrote:
I wonder if there is middle ground - play to 6 runes (instead of 7), possibly on a smaller map, and with a hybrid ending where you have to control it for TWO seasons or until the end of the current year, whichever is first.

That would work just fine, I'm sure.
 
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Cracky McCracken
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sigmazero13 wrote:
Mezmorki wrote:
I wonder if there is middle ground - play to 6 runes (instead of 7), possibly on a smaller map, and with a hybrid ending where you have to control it for TWO seasons or until the end of the current year, whichever is first.

That would work just fine, I'm sure.


I'm not sure about the smaller map part. The board is what it is. Playing to six runes with the one year victory cards yields a good game. The two season victory card idea would work, make the game a little shorter.

Respect the classics man cool RW is FFG at it's best.
 
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Cracky McCracken
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Sorting the game from baggies to trays might speed things up a bit.
 
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Scott Lewis
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Cracky wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
Mezmorki wrote:
I wonder if there is middle ground - play to 6 runes (instead of 7), possibly on a smaller map, and with a hybrid ending where you have to control it for TWO seasons or until the end of the current year, whichever is first.

That would work just fine, I'm sure.


I'm not sure about the smaller map part. The board is what it is. Playing to six runes with the one year victory cards yields a good game. The two season victory card idea would work, make the game a little shorter.

Respect the classics man cool RW is FFG at it's best.

The map size is variable anyway Especially with 2 players, and even 3, but if you get all the 2-space tiles and none of the 4-space tiles, you can have a tight map. (And with the expansion, the #12 tile can make it even smaller!)
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mike m
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our group plays with starting 2 pairs of real / fake runes (one pair in the home realm, one in the wild), play to 6 runes using Road to Victory or 6 years, which ever comes first.

We have a strict time constraint (approx 4 hrs), and this has been pretty good for keeping to that, while not compromising the epic feel.

The basis for our rules comes from this post - very well thought out. His conclusion made a lot of sense to me, in terms of incorporating Road to Victory without also making the game longer. He recommends 1 real rune at the start, play to 5, but we like the 2nd real rune, play to 6, bec it is the same game length, while undermining turtling a bit bec you require more space to hold your runes. It results in some nice competition for the rune spots out in the middle of the board. Who can ultimately get the most is often in doubt until the very end.

As he says, you could reasonably even lower it to start with 2 runes and play to 5 runes, while keeping the hard cutoff at 6 years. We tried it and liked it, but can occasionally result in a very quick game, so we now have it at 6 runes. But maybe that is the way for you to go since game time seems more of an issue for you.
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Jason Winter
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The longest game of this I have ever had was 10 hours. very competitive group though and we were still learning the game and looking up rules. typically it runs about 3 hours or less and we had a 4 player game go just under 2 hrs once. I do think this game is an excellent 2 player game. It runs about 1 1/2hrs. It really gets into the meat of the game and seems to have better balance and no 3 or 2 on 1 ganging up. After maybe 30 games of this I have found I like 2 player best. either way once everyone understands the game well enough it goes quick.
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Kevin Graves
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I like 2 player too, but found we had several games where the map just made it very difficult for one side. Since the problem seemed to be that the player who placed the last tile gets the pick of home areas, there was incentive for them to place a tile which made it hard to create balanced home area starrting positions. To fix this we make the 2nd player play the first tile, thus the sequence is

1. 2nd player places tile
2. 1st player places tile
3. 2nd player places tile
4. 1st player places tile, HR Setup areas, Runes
5. 2nd player places Runes, chooses HR

We have found this has led to more balanced maps.
 
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Scott Lewis
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The way we've resolved that is to re-pick first player after the map is built, so neither player knows who will be the one placing the Home Realm tiles and who will be picking first.
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Kevin Graves
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That's a good idea and forces both players to strive for a balanced layout.
 
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Alex Florin
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I have played with less runes several times to shorten the game, keeping the revised edition victory condition as well as the normal map size based on the number of players. It works very well.
 
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Atanasije Stojkovic
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Mezmorki wrote:
#2 - a player needs 7 runes to win - instead of six

#3 - you don't immediately win upon getting 6 runes, but need to hold onto them for an entire year (through all seasons).

So my question is this: If I grab the revised edition, can I still play using the old victory rules, or will something break horribly?

Moreover, if I want to play an even shorter game - is there a possibility of playing to say 5 dragon runes instead of 6 (or 7)?

For anyone who has played both editions, can you comment on how the revised rules do (or don't) add to the game length?

Thanks!


You only need 7 runes to win if you use the Alternative Cities from the game's expansion, most of which are quite powerful and have built-in runes themselves.

By the way, considering the game's already quite big length and overall complexity, I am inclined to recommend using the Alternative Cities with the standard 6 runes rule; of course you have to get the expansion for that. Or you could simply house-rule the expansion's cities into the game (I'm not sure, but I don't think there's any copyright infringement in that).
 
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Oliver Kiley
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Cracky wrote:


Sorting the game from baggies to trays might speed things up a bit.


What Plano boxes are these?
 
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Oliver Kiley
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SirWashington wrote:
The basis for our rules comes from this post - very well thought out.


Hopefully going to get this to the table this weekend. I played a few turns solo to work out the rules better. I'm planning to try the following:

Map Setup
Just to streamline this for the first play, we'll have one player setup the map (me), and that player will pick their home realm last (me). Basically, encourage one player to make a balanced map because they'll have the worst starting spot otherwise Use the normal map size for number of players, quests, etc.

Runes & Victory

- Map setup player: one real and one fake rune per player, randomized (face down so they don't even know) and placed in neutral/wild territory

- Each player gets one real and one fake rune to place in their home realm

- Play to FIVE runes to start the victory turn. You'll have 1 rune in your home at the start, so effectively need to secure 4 runes. 2-4 will be in the middle (depending on player count) but no one knows which ones are which at the start.

- Game capped at 6 full years - but may be capped sooner (see below)

- Modified Road to Victory (experimental!): Players place their victory cards TWO seasons away (instead of a full year away). Players can only place their victory card once per game. The game ends automatically at the end of the NEXT year once a player has placed a victory card.

[i]Examples: It's turn 4 in summer, and I'm the first to place a victory card. The card goes on Winter of this year. If I don't win on winter, then the game will automatically end at the end of the next year (year 5).




Let me break down my thinking on the last point a little bit.

Granted, I haven't yet played the game, but it would seem to me that placing a victory card (and thereby revealing your runes), paints a big fat target on your head. Having to hold onto those runes for a full year seems pretty daunting (especially knowing the kinds of table talk my gaming group gets into!). If the result of declaring your rune state is to invite attack and probably lose a rune, and therefore be unable to win with the victory card method anyway .... then isn't it just better to keep quiet and just wait until the final turn of the game anyway?

So, my idea was to reduce the risk somewhat by having victory cards placed only two seasons away instead of a full year. The timing becomes a bit more strategic. You probably want to to declare in the summer (placing victory card on Winter) as it's more likely for attack cards (mobilize/conquest) to already be played for that year, and you have a chance to win in winter. If you wait until fall, everyone will have a chance to attack you next spring (presumably).

The process of anyone placing a victory card means that the next full year if the last year of the game. This might lead to an interesting pile-on-effect that will encourage players to try to win as early as they can (by placing a victory card) once the first player does so - especially if they fail.

All in all, I think it will encourage the end game to wrap up more quickly without an inevitable drag to the end of 6 full years. At the same time, it doesn't have the immediate victory of the original version of the game, which I agree sounds a little anti-climactic given the hidden nature of the runes.

Thoughts?
 
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mike m
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Mezmorki wrote:
Just to streamline this for the first play, we'll have one player setup the map (me), and that player will pick their home realm last (me)

you might streamline this even more and use the first map in this post. i have played it several times and it was a good game each time. https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1556149/runewars-pre-made-m...

Mezmorki wrote:
So, my idea was to reduce the risk somewhat by having victory cards placed only two seasons away instead of a full year. The timing becomes a bit more strategic. You probably want to to declare in the summer (placing victory card on Winter) as it's more likely for attack cards (mobilize/conquest) to already be played for that year, and you have a chance to win in winter. If you wait until fall, everyone will have a chance to attack you next spring (presumably).

i predict it will be basically impossible to stop someone who has declared 5 runes. It is already very difficult to stop someone, though you are right that if you feel you can't defend all your runes, you might wait until the end.

my experience is that the game does not drag to the end (though occasionally there is one player who is clearly out of the running, and it might drag for them) - the last year is the most intense. but i get your purpose is to try to shorten the game, and you might achieve that either by making it more beneficial to declaring runes, or simply bec the 2 seasons after someone declares might be pointless if no one can take any real measures.

will be interesting to hear how it goes!
 
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