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Martians: A Story of Civilization» Forums » General

Subject: Placing and Resolving Demand Tokens rss

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Greg Moore
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I am starting this thread because I am absolutely convinced that many people (including some of the videos) are making incorrect assumptions about this game and playing it wrong. My comments apply to all but the COM.4 competitive mode.

Assumption 1: You only use a number of quarters equal to the number of players. This is not stated in the rules and is wrong. All 4 quarters are always in play, regardless of the number of players, The only thing that changes, based on player number, is the numbers of demand tokens placed, as shown in the box on pg. 11. These tokens are placed on quarters Q1 to Q4 and then repeated as necessary (food with 3 or 4 players does this). It is important that players do not just pile them all together in the first quarters.

Assumption 2: When resolving the quarters summary phase, the worst that can happen is each player loses 1 action marker for disease and 1 for hunger. This is wrong. Many people are missing the first paragraph of the Quarters Summary Phase on pg. 17. It says "In this phase each of the quarters should be settled separately, starting with the first quarters on the left (Q1)." This is reinforced by multiple repetitions of the phrase "in these quarters". This means that there will be 4 separate quarters resolutions with a possible penalty in each one of the 4. If player(s) completely ignore disease and hunger (or even just hunger), they will lose all their action markers to the quarters and need to spend a lot of time and money to get them back. Ignoring disease and hunger is not a viable strategy if this game is played correctly.

I understand these rules are a little hard to master but I also think they are far better than some people think. You just need to read them closely and not make any assumptions that are not written in the rules. Please let me know what you think or why you think I am wrong.
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Joe Pilkus
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Greg,

I think most folks know my stance on this issue, but I'll simply state that my interpretation, as follows"

Regarding Assumption #1.: You place tokens up to the number of "players" in the game. Thus, in a two-player game, you do not place any tokens in Q3 or Q4.

Regarding Assumption #2: I agree that each Quarters is handled separately, but only to the number of "players" (see Assumption #1).

I'm curious to read the comments.

Cheers,
Joe
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Justin J
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Joe,

I still agree with Greg since the rules never specify that the living quarters are limited to the number of players with exception being competitive mode.

That said, I would actually love to hear your feedback after playing a game based on Greg's interpretation of the rules.
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Joe Pilkus
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CaveHinds,

With an impending snow storm here in the D.C. area, I'm not heading to work tomorrow, so I may actually get the game to table.

Cheers,
Joe
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Justin J
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Have fun and be safe. I'm on southside of VA and we're just missing out on the snow.
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Greg Moore
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Joe

Can you tell me what part of the rulebook leads you to believe your interpretation of Assumption 1? I don't see anything that says that the number of players matches the number of quarters used and I don't believe that would be consistent with the rest of the rules.
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Dieter van Loon
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I'm also with Greg on this part of the rules.
Would love to get some official confirmation as they just posted a video on kickstarter where the token placement was completely wrong.
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Erik Downie
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Greg, I've been playing the same way as Joe. I can say that my interpretation, as I've mentioned in another thread, came from playing competitive first. Each quarter gets 1/1/2 tokens. Then I noticed the number of tokens to be put into the quarters in solo/coop mode as those amounts multiplied by [Player Count]. That led me to assume you only put tokens in [Player Count] quarters. It also keeps the scaling of hunger the same for player counts.

For example (ignoring disease and oxygen), if we didn't clear any hunger at the end of the cycle:
A = Spreading out over Q1-Q4
B = Using only [Player Count] of quarters.

Solo/2 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 2 action markers placed

3 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 3 action markers placed

4 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 4 action markers placed

Seems a bit unfair to penalise lower player counts by taking away more action markers.

But I am with everybody here in that I'd really like to have an official response though.
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Dieter van Loon
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Vyking wrote:
Greg, I've been playing the same way as Joe. I can say that my interpretation, as I've mentioned in another thread, came from playing competitive first. Each quarter gets 1/1/2 tokens. Then I noticed the number of tokens to be put into the quarters in solo/coop mode as those amounts multiplied by [Player Count]. That led me to assume you only put tokens in [Player Count] quarters. It also keeps the scaling of hunger the same for player counts.

For example (ignoring disease and oxygen), if we didn't clear any hunger at the end of the cycle:
A = Spreading out over Q1-Q4
B = Using only [Player Count] of quarters.

Solo/2 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 2 action markers placed

3 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 3 action markers placed

4 player:
A: 4 action markers placed
B: 4 action markers placed

Seems a bit unfair to penalise lower player counts by taking away more action markers.

But I am with everybody here in that I'd really like to have an official response though.


Hi Erik,

Not sure i'm following your math there. Each corporation has a total of 3 markers so we have an upper limit of "Corporations X 3".

This is what I come up with:
Solo/2 player:
A: 6 action markers placed (Corps(2) x Quarters with hunger(4), limit:6)
B: 4 action markers placed (Corps(2) x Quarters with hunger(2), limit:6)

3 player:
A: 9 action markers placed (Corps(3) x Quarters with hunger(4), limit:9)
B: 9 action markers placed (Corps(3) x Quarters with hunger(3), limit:9)

4 player:
A: 12 action markers placed (Corps(4) x Quarters with hunger(4), limit:12)
B: 12 action markers placed (Corps(4) x Quarters with hunger(4), limit:12)

Seems like not spreading the tokens just makes it easier on 2-player mode instead of keeping the linear count(6-9-12 vs 4-9-12).

Note: I play with the rule that all quarters are used except in competitive mode.
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Erik Downie
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That reads to me like you're placing too many action markers down. The errata in the rules state you place ONE action marker in a quarter that has any number of hunger, not one per player as the original wrong rules are written in the rulebook.

EDIT: Just noticed you responded in the other thread about this. Too many threads of this open. RedImp! Hurry up and clarify everything!
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Delith Malistar
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man.
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I never thought about this because the videos I watched showed the resources all clumped together but wow, I think you opened my eyes!


Page 6 of the manual.
Quote:
The player's place tokens in the quarters. The players place one token in each of the quarters, starting with Q1, then moving to the next quarters, ending with Q4.

This is for the starting oxygen tokens. In a 2 player game, there are only two tokens (3 player, 3 tokens and 4 player, 4 tokens) but reading that at face value, it doesn't mention anything about a quarter for each player. In fact, in the first paragraph of Co-op mode it states "..technologies and the quarters on the board, are shared." Rereading this again, I'm inclined to side with Greg's thoughts that all 4 quarters are used, though in a two player game, Q3 and Q4 might not be used for much except for hunger tokens.


Also on Page 6.
Quote:
The player places 2 oxygen tokens in the quarters (one in Q1 and the other in Q2)

If it was merely player count for Quarters, then the two tokens would be placed on Q1. Argument could be it's based on corporations, of course. This rule is also written out with the exact wording for semi co-op.


Manual P.11 wrote:
The tokens are always placed from the leftmost quarters Q1 to the Q4 on the right. The players place one token of each type in each of the quarters and move to the next quarters. If there are more tokens than quarters, they should still be placed, starting again from Q1.

This is what Greg alluded to in his original post. This is also the rules for Solo, Co-op, and Semi Co-op. Com.4 has different rules. Anyway, I think this is pretty self explanatory. Again, thank you Greg for showing me this in a different light. I was beginning to think this game was too easy with the loophole of just ignoring tokens and paying your way through it. It just didn't *feel* right and now I think this is why.


You can't viably ignore these demand tokens and think you can win the game. That just doesn't make sense for a game that went through any kind of testing. So by spreading out the tokens, we just made the consequences of ignoring the tokens up to 4 times more harsh. I think this is the intended way to play and will be doing this from now on.

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Krista Donnelly
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I also hadn't been reading things this way, but will try a game resolving quarters separately. I was feeling uneasy myself about the "ignoring the demands" strategy which is very viable when you only lose 1 action marker to the residence and 1 to the infirmary, no matter how many tokens are left.
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Joe Pilkus
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Greg,

The rules prove ambiguous enough, so at the risk of duplicating my posts from another thread:

I guess this is the crux of my argument/thematic interpretation regarding that which you find curious. In any game, you will always have more Hunger tokens (unlike Disease and Oxygen is simply a 1-1 ratio for the Quarters) than Quarters (as you never play with one one set of colors), thus...

2-player (4 Hunger tokens)
Q1: 1st Hunger token
Q2: 2nd Hunger token (back to Q1)
Q1: 3rd Hunger token
Q2: 4th Hunger token

3-player (6 Hunger tokens)
Q1: 1st Hunger token
Q2: 2nd Hunger token
Q3: 3rd Hunger token (back to Q1)
Q1: 4th Hunger token
Q2: 5th Hunger token
Q3: 6th Hunger token

4-player (8 Hunger tokens)
Q1: 1st Hunger token
Q2: 2nd Hunger token
Q3: 3rd Hunger token
Q4: 4th Hunger token (back to Q1)
Q1: 5th Hunger token
Q2: 6th Hunger token
Q3: 7th Hunger token
Q4: 8th Hunger token

I hope that makes sense.

Otherwise, after placement in a 3-player game, following the literal interpretation of the rules in which you would place three Oxygen tokens, three Disease tokens, and six Hunger tokens, the end state would look as follows:

Q1: one Oxygen token, one Disease token, and two Hunger tokens
Q2: one Oxygen token, one Disease token, and two Hunger tokens
Q3: one Oxygen token, one Disease token, and one Hunger token
Q4: one Hunger token

I have to say, even at the risk of some hubris, I'll never set-up the game this way, as it doesn't make thematic sense.

Cheers,
Joe
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Delith Malistar
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Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man.
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The Professor wrote:

I have to say, even at the risk of some hubris, I'll never set-up the game this way, as it doesn't make thematic sense.

Cheers,
Joe


I understand how it might not make thematic sense, as in the literal example, those colonists living in Q4 somehow can breathe and stay healthy but go hungry while those in the other quarters are worse off. I can somewhat justify it because all quarters are connected on the board and maybe thematically, the oxygen purifiers are located closer to Q4 but the kitchens are by Q1 or something. It's weak, but I can live with it because doing it the way I was doing it breaks the game and makes it unplayable for me when you can just ignore most of the tokens completely for such a small penalty.

I think the main point is to force players to really take into consideration those demand tokens before just saying "I'll ignore them, take the small penalty and make up the difference in the next round with just a few coins compared to actually working towards clearing the tokens."

To me, that thought process breaks the game more so than breaking the theme. Granted, I haven't put as many hours into the game as you have (by a long shot from what I see) so I'll have to try it a couple more times to really get a feel for it. I've only ever played with lumping all resources into one quarter in my solo games. Even using two quarters would be better than the way I was doing it.

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Joe Pilkus
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Delith,

It's interesting that this issue has been raised as I never thought of putting all of the tokens in one Quarters. Having said that, until Mitchell posted his original thoughts on "ignoring the tokens" I never thought of it as a viable strategy.

I can get my head around distributing the tokens across the Quarters, but also having to suffer the penalties for not clearing them, as well. I enjoy this game because the Events take this game from a simple puzzle (once you've figured out the formula, you just repeat it every time), to one in which you must react to the unknown. Coupled with this, you don't always have ready access to the Experts, Assistants, or Landing Pad tiles you need to garner income.

Hope you're enjoying the game, and please let us know what you think of the various ways to distribute the tokens and let us know which one you settle upon to make your game experience great.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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