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Subject: Getting Discouraged (minor spoilers) rss

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Derrick Billings
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After game 5, I'm up to 27 Glory and the leader is up to 53. (The front runner got some Raid-promoting benefits and is basically immune to Permanent Enmity) Everybody else has won at least one game and is improving their setup hand over fist while I'm continually losing tempo.

I really don't know what to do at this point. I went completely on tilt last game when the Pirate King demanded gold, forcing me into some suboptimal buys first turn, and before I could set up my trading benefits he came back demanding tribute on turn 3 forcing me to dump my investments *again*. Basically every out I had to make some headway instantly turned into the Worst Possible Idea as soon as I went for it.
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Jackson Rodriguez
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Go for the milestones that are out there and get in on the glory fest.

Stop buying goods to sell them unless it's going to get you a milestone- buying goods is a trap.
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Nicholas
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Are you using your bonus stuff at the beginning? You could take 18! gold extra next game. Or some gold and some reputation.
And, as starting player, you have first shot at every available milestone.
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j n
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Getting hit by the event deck like that is pretty rough.

26 points behind should get you some pretty sweet starting rewards, that you should be able to use to build a glory-engine somewhat quickly.

Selling goods without a milestone involved is usually a trap, but buying for 3g each can be okay if you are going to be able to turn them into 8g discounts without spending too many actions sailing them around.

This is definitely not a game where you should pick one strategy and pursue it to oblivion. Finding an efficient path to glory based on the current stuff available is key. Getting yourself in the mood to do that should also help you adapt when the event deck decides to get mean.

If you aren't doing this already, it might be a good idea to start taking pictures of the board, milestones, unlocked upgrades/buildings/rules stickers, and everyone's permanent status/kept cards at the end of each game. I've been doing this and sharing the pictures with my group online, and it can make planning your next steps easier.
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J Kaemmer
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You get 6 bonuses at the start of the next game. Look at the available milestones and figure out how to leverage those to get there as fast as possible.

My wife was is a similar spot, she was 22 points behind me going into game 4. She was upset. So we sat down and talked it out. She had reserved an advisor that practically guaranteed her 1 milestone so we focused on how to steal another from the rest of us. She took 4 fortune tokens and 3 gold, and we figured out how she could optimally explore a certain type of site to get the other milestone.

Move&raid, upgrade&move, move&explore. We literally mathed it out so that she could not fail. End of turn 3 she had 9 glory. By turn 5, she won the game with her second milestone.

Sit down. Crunch the numbers. The large amount of bonus cash and fortune that you can start with means you get to set the pace for the game. Barring someone having an absolutely stupid-good advisor, you have first dibs on everything. Use that.

Do not be discouraged, just try to reformulate your approach a little.
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Becq Starforged
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Others have given good general advice. One thing I'd like to check on:

It sounds to me as though you got the same exact event twice in a single year. In general, this shouldn't happen. Each time you flip over a new event, you "dismiss" the old one (put it at the bottom of the deck). So most of the time, you shouldn't get that event back until one of two things happens:
1) The year ends -- during winter, the event deck is shuffled.
2) A milestone introduces a new event -- the new event is shuffled into the deck (which includes the events at the bottom of the deck).

Back to general advice:

There are events that punish accumulation of gold. The best way to combat this is to minimize selling for gold. Instead, consider converting goods directly into glory via treasures, upgrades, or structures -- each of which converts a good and 2 gold into a glory. This is often more efficient than selling, since it allows you to get 8 gold worth of benefit per good rather than 6. You'll need to sell from time to time to get seed money, but try not to accumulate too much at a time, and make sure you have a plan to spend the cash soon after. Always keep in mind that money is worthless at the end of the game; trading is a tool that must be used to generate glory, not wealth.

As others have noted, milestones are fairly critical to winning the game (and not only due to glory; you've probably seen by now other benefits). Always look over the milestones for the next game, and pick out one (or two) that you think you can get faster than the others. You actually want to be doing this in the last few turns of the previous game, because you want to keep an advisor that will help you -- which might mean buying an advisor that you don't need at the time, but which you'll need early in the next game.

If you're behind, you have a pretty significant advantage in the first couple of turns of the game, because you and go first,
(Box 1 spoilers)
Spoiler (click to reveal)
and start the game with bonus money/rep/fortune.

You can accomplish things earlier in the turn than the others, and have first shot at the best advisors. Use that to make sure you get the milestone you're aiming for!

One thing to beware of is the other players. One *disadvantage* of going first is that you don't know where the other players are heading.
(Box 1 spoilers)
Spoiler (click to reveal)
Try to avoid being an easy target. Keeping your ships together is often a strong advantage for two reasons: first, you get a little extra defensive boost. And second, YOU control which of your ships is attacked. Which means that you can put your goods on one ship, then use the other as a sacrifice, if you're raided.


One last thing. I'm not sure where you are in the campaign, but if you look at the types of things that get unlocked with each box, you might see trends or themes. There are points in the campaign where trade and/or exploration vary in importance, and you should try to adapt your chosen strategy to that. Don't lock yourself into a particular strategy exclusively.

I hope something in here helps!
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j n
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Becq wrote:
Others have given good general advice. One thing I'd like to check on:

It sounds to me as though you got the same exact event twice in a single year.


A closer read suggests they were different events.
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Becq Starforged
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lactamaeon wrote:
A closer read suggests they were different events.

Oh? It looks as though
(Multiple early even spoilers)
Spoiler (click to reveal)
the event(s) stole gold twice in the same year. Are there two of that particular card? We've kept the deck contents secret, so I haven't counted, and frankly I'm sure there are events I haven't even seen yet. My impression is that there are multiple similar cards, but they inflict different penalties, and only one is triggered by gold or affects accumulated gold (the others are glory-triggered, which shouldn't affect a trader who's engine is still building).


But that's why I asked it as a question.
 
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j n
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There's one you haven't seen yet then

Spoiler (click to reveal)

that attacks based on goods in province warehouse. It's even called "The Pirate King Demands Tribute


I think that's the one he's speaking of.
 
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Becq Starforged
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Ah, I see. I guess there's an advantage to having
Spoiler (click to reveal)
built up a massive event card deck quickly.

Carry on, then!
 
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jesse largent
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I've noticed this game has some luck based elements that can effectively screw with a person pretty badly or give them a huge advantage.

that being said, theres nothing to stop you guys from ganging up on first place either...
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Dirge Overdrive
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I'd just stop, provided you have other ways to game, and your game group won't excommunicate you for it. It doesn't sound like you're enjoying it.

Or go into NPC mode: stop caring about the outcome and just go through the motions (buying/selling/building) so you can remain involved with the game group. Poach some milestones that show up if they're low hanging fruit. Otherwise build, upgrade, buy treasure. Never concentrate your wealth or goods if there are enemy ships nearby. Focus on defense and on denying raid bonuses to the leader, as much to protect yourself and your assets as to drag the raiders down.

The game is luck-driven, encourages cruelty, and then makes you live with outcomes of the bad luck and viciousness for months. Turn order is hugely important, but can screw the player in last place overall just as a game is ending, when turn order changes to fit the current game's scoring. The core gameplay is clunky, takes too many hours and ends in too few turns. Saying "No thank you" to all that is a perfectly valid choice.
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