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Subject: What's the general consensus? rss

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Lee Benson
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I've been hearing lots of mixed things about this game. It looks fantastic and I'm a fan of the mechanics and theme. I'm also interested in the idea of playing this cooperatively and competitively but have heard some negative things about various formats. I've created a poll with my questions, which hopefully will help people with their purchasing decisions once this hits stores. Please only take the poll if you've actually played the game; no speculating.

If you have comments, feel free to leave them below. If you have other questions you want to see answered, please add those as well. Thanks!

Poll: Consensus on Martians: A Story of Civilization
A few questions for people who have bought and/or played Martians: A Story of Civilization.
1. Are you happy with your purchase of this game?
Yes, very.
Yes.
I'm indifferent.
No.
No, I wish I could get my money back.
I didn't buy it.
2. How well does each format work?
  Doesn't work; possibly broken. Not fun, but technically works. Works fine and is generally enjoyable. Works well; I enjoy playing it this way. Works perfectly; I love playing it this way!
Cooperative
Semi-Cooperative
Competitive
Solo
3. Just how confusing is the rulebook?
This game is practically unplayable without the FAQ.
It's difficult, but understandable.
It's not difficult, but could be better.
It's easy to understand.
4. Martians is rated a 4 on the BGG Weight scale. How complex is it really?
It's not complicated at all. You can play it with new gamers. (eg Forbidden Desert, Bohnanza)
It has some depth but is pretty accessible. (eg Suburbia, Village)
It's no more complicated than your standard Euro. (eg Le Havre, Agricola)
I've played Vlaada games that are more accessible. (eg Mage Knight, Through the Ages I/II)
5. How intense/unforgiving is it?
If you mess up once, you're out of the running.
You can recover from mistakes, but it's not easy.
It's easy to recover; there are catchup mechanisms built in to the game.
6. How much of a factor is randomness/luck?
A huge factor. You can plan all you want, but still get screwed.
A definite factor, but one you can usually mitigate.
An easily mitigated factor.
Not a factor at all.
      44 answers
Poll created by Zepheus
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David Luchetti
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Based on what I've seen, I'm glad that I pulled out of the Kickstarter.

A somewhat similar themed game which is fantastic is Terraform Mars ...
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StevenE Smooth Sailing...
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I am wondering if I should have backed the game... I was not sold based on the demo videos. I am hoping to see some more reviews and a chance to play at Strategicon in Jan.
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Paul Mclachlan
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I've played this game twice now and think it's great.

The only issue I have is with the rule book, very poorly laid out.

One of the guys in my group intends to do a re-organisation of the rulebook and post it up here. Not sure how long it will take as he has a couple of issues in his personal life that will effect how much time he has to do this over the next month or so.
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Eduardo Cruz
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I've only played 2p coop, and don't understand why people keep saying that's too easy.
Maybe i got some rules wrong (I've read the manual 3 times), and on the 3 times that I played get 2 victories right on the last round of the last cycle.

The rulebook could be better, there's are some errors (2 instead of 3 upgrades on the greenhouses, the number of crop tiles), the structure of it is clumbersome, but once you've played everything puts together.
The luck is a bit to high for a strategic euro, and can hurt the semi-coop. and competitive modes.

So far I'm happy with the purchase and eager to try the other modes.
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Alexandre P.
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You have forgotten the case "I'm a backer but didn't picked it up at Essen so I can't answer to your poll before February".
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Lee Benson
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Xahendir wrote:
You have forgotten the case "I'm a backer put didn't picked it up at Essen so I can't answer to your poll before February".


Yeah, I knew the sample population would be small as there are currently only 107 ratings. I figured it wouldn't hurt to ask those who had already received it.
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Sandra Dageroth
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I'm also really happy I backed this one and picked it up in Essen. Yes, the layout of the rules is some of the worst I've ever encountered but once you have played it, everything clicks together. And once you know how a round/turn/cycle works all you have to do is figure out how to best make use of all available actions based on the scenario goal(s). Really looking forward to playing this again.
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Joe Pilkus
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Lee,

Alexandre makes a great point...I'm enthusiastic, but I'm also behind the scenes trying to make it better. Several months hence, when most of the Backers have received their game, I'm curious as well as to the responses.

Cheers,
Joe
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Christian Kremer
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I am glad I backed the game on KS, though I maybe have to point out that I never planned to play it competitive firsthand.

I really like the idea of overcoming the challenge of inhabitating the mars in a cooperative way.

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Lee Benson
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Despite the small sample size, I feel like I've received some good data out of this. To sum up some things:

Of the different play modes, Cooperative seems to be the most popular with 80% of people saying they find it at least generally enjoyable. Competitive is extremely divided with people seeming to either love it or dislike it — if anyone wants to discuss this, I'm sure it would interesting.

To break it down even further:
57% think Cooperative works well or perfectly
44% Semi-coop
36% Competitive
22% Solo


As of Dec. 7th:
53% think Cooperative works well or perfectly
40% Semi-coop
33% Competitive
18% Solo
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Alexandre P.
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I have wtached a "how to play" video of this game and the explainer spend all the video saying "I have not played it cooperatively yet but It's clearly designed as a cooperative mode, this is an other example" and he details each part of randomness of the game that, in his opinion could piss off eurogamers in a competitive game but would be accepted in a cooperative game (as every one works together and you only have to deal with a temporarly disadvantaged player).

Is this the consensus ?
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Anthony Ferrise
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Thanks for creating the poll. I've been waiting for a bit of insight on this game. I was tempted to back the Kickstarter, but ultimately didn't - mostly due to the complexity that seemed very clunky.

I'll still wait for reviews, but judging based on some of those responses this is a game that will sit firmly in the 'Want to Play' column, not the 'Owned' column.
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Lee Benson
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tonyf55 wrote:
Thanks for creating the poll. I've been waiting for a bit of insight on this game. I was tempted to back the Kickstarter, but ultimately didn't - mostly due to the complexity that seemed very clunky.

I'll still wait for reviews, but judging based on some of those responses this is a game that will sit firmly in the 'Want to Play' column, not the 'Owned' column.


Anthony, I'm glad you got some use out of it. Despite some misgivings, I was able to obtain a copy and give this game a try. I'm working on an in-depth review of the game now which I hope to post by this weekend. It will only be one opinion but hopefully it will spur some discussion.
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Stuart Cresswell
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This release is still shrouded in mystery for various reasons it seems. I failed to make time to check it out at Essen despite noticing it was pretty on the table and knowing it features mechanics that I would enjoy.

Interesting to hear that Ed Uhler from Heavy Cardboard collected a copy in his whopping haul of spoils shipped back to Denver.

Any commentary about mitigation for randomness is always valuable feedback on assessing the effectiveness of a design. Any comments about how well the gameplay suits the theme setting?

I must confess to being a fan of tackling games with sketchy rulebooks. There's something enjoyable and rewarding about conquering them to master and teach a game when it turns out to be a gem.
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Xavi Bové
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This game has nothing to do with TM but the theme...
I'd say that in the coop mode this is a game similar to Pandemic, Scape fire rescue and other coops with action points system, while TM is a hand management fully competitive.
If you like this kind of coops and enjoy the theme, go for it, is not that mess... it demands some extra effort when reading the rules but thats all.
For Spanish speakers you can listen our last podcast title with a review on both games TM and Martians a Story of Civilization.

Enjoy playing
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Bjørnis
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hey, this is actually a very good way of understanding if a game is for you or not. It should be implemented on each game on BGG.com. If you throw in one more questdion to uncover if this game is similar to other games, ie. "if you have agricola, this game is not needed in your collection", it would be very useful
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Joe Pilkus
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Dugy wrote:
I've only played 2p coop, and don't understand why people keep saying that's too easy.
Maybe i got some rules wrong (I've read the manual 3 times), and on the 3 times that I played get 2 victories right on the last round of the last cycle.

The rulebook could be better, there's are some errors (2 instead of 3 upgrades on the greenhouses, the number of crop tiles), the structure of it is clumbersome, but once you've played everything puts together.
The luck is a bit to high for a strategic euro, and can hurt the semi-coop. and competitive modes.

So far I'm happy with the purchase and eager to try the other modes.


Eduardo,

I too have played a number of tight, tense, and exciting games. I'm under the impression that many folks have missed a few rules...most notably, the one in which you don't get back your Action markers unless you spend a Time Unit to do so.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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