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Subject: 3 Bot Questions!!! rss

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Here are a few bot questions I haven't been able to answer via the forum. Let's go!

1. The first instruction for Post Conference Implementation for the Churchill and Stalin Bots say, "Implement A-Bomb Research." What does this mean? Surely they're not always supposed to dump 3 production markers as die-roll modifiers?

2. I'm never sure how/when the Bots should advance/not advance Second Front and USSR Declares War on Japan, and with how much priority. This is the single most unclear part of the Bots for me. Can anyone suggest a list of priorities?

3. Regarding how the Bots Advance Issues, see the photo below. Let's say Stalin has 5 points with which to, according to the Bots, "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." Would Stalin

a) Randomly choose between "US Directed Offense" and "Pol-Mil 2/2" because they are closest.

b) One of the other options (A-Bomb, UK Production, UK Directed Offense).

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1: A-Bomb - I would say it's just saying to do the roll but no production spent on modifiers. Only the US modify and only in the last couple of conferences.

2: they would pick these conditionals (if they're on the table) as basically a random choice. The US only puts second front if it can put it in the middle. USSR and U.K. will grab them randomly to be jerks.

3: If the staff card providing the five doesn't have an issue associated with him, then definitely A. But if he has, say, a bonus on production, then he'll grab the UK production, regardless of the closer issues.

So the way I see it is issue associated with card, then failing that, closest issue to track, with random pick as necessary.

My own question: when a boy debates an issue, and all of his staff cards can bring it onto his track, is it purely random which card is used?
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gatorskin wrote:

3. Regarding how the Bots Advance Issues, see the photo below. Let's say Stalin has 5 points with which to, according to the Bots, "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." Would Stalin

a) Randomly choose between "US Directed Offense" and "Pol-Mil 2/2" because they are closest.

b) One of the other options (A-Bomb, UK Production, UK Directed Offense).



The issues already on the Soviet track wouldn't be eligible to be moved.

In this scenario, a '5' will move ANY of the visible issues onto the USSR track. With no clause of 'having the issue end as close as possible to Papa Stalin', wouldn't all of the issues except those already on the USSR track be eligible, and thus be decided randomly among them?



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Yeah, that's my question. Is it a totally random roll, no matter how close/far they are?
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gatorskin wrote:
Yeah, that's my question. Is it a totally random roll, no matter how close/far they are?


It is, to parse the sentence on the bot sheet:

1 - Move an issue onto the Soviet track if possible. Choose randomly if more than one can be moved onto the track successfully - distance is irrelevant except for the stated limit that eligible issues must reach the Soviet track.

2 - If that isn't possible then move an issue as close as possible to the Soviet track. If more than one issue can be brought to the closest possible distance (i.e. two issues can be moved to within 2 spaces of the Soviet track, and no other issue can be brought as close or closer) then choose randomly between those issues.
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Ah, so distance doesn't matter for your #1, but it *does* matter for your #2.
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So you're all viewing "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." as a priority list? I.e., if you can, advance an issue onto the Soviet Track. Otherwise move the issue which you can pull closest to the soviet track. And in both cases, if there's a choice, pick randomly?

I've been viewing it as all part of one clause. So advance an issue onto the Soviet track, with the priority going to the issue that's closest to the Soviet track.

That'll totally make a difference!
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Deanolium wrote:
So you're all viewing "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." as a priority list? I.e., if you can, advance an issue onto the Soviet Track. Otherwise move the issue which you can pull closest to the soviet track. And in both cases, if there's a choice, pick randomly?

I've been viewing it as all part of one clause. So advance an issue onto the Soviet track, with the priority going to the issue that's closest to the Soviet track.

That'll totally make a difference!


I am pretty sure the "priority list" interpretation was triggered by a response from the designer somewhere in the forums. It was already my interpretation since it says "closest to Soviet track" not closest to the end of the Soviet track, which would suggest the other interpretation. Once an issue is anywhere on the Soviet track, it is as "close" as it can get to that track so where on the track it ends up is not relevant.

Also, if you are executing the bots properly they should be using cards in order from 2nd highest to lowest, so if the bot is trying to maximize the effectiveness of a card, it would consider any issue that can reach its track, not just the closest.

It also makes the most sense from a gameplay perspective as the more unpredictable the bots are the bigger the challenge. The game is way too easy solo if the bots lose their unpredictability. Players who "choose" the "most sensible" issue to advance instead of rolling randomly seem, anecdotally, to enjoy the game less.


Seems I was remembering badly!

MarkHerman wrote:
Shako wrote:
Hello,

here is the way I play:
- 1st choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track onto the active Bot track. If a choice is needed, I choose the closest from the active Bot.
- 2nd choice: If not possible, I move an issue which is already onto the active Bot track (so possibility to capture it).
- 3rd choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track toward the center of the table.


Correct


That being said, I have had great success using the priorities I originally answered with, in spite of them disagreeing with Mr. Herman's answer. Given his usual responses, I don't think he would mind at all...
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Helpful!

I'd also gladly take other opinions on this question I asked:

2. I'm never sure how/when the Bots should advance/not advance Second Front and USSR Declares War on Japan, and with how much priority. This is the single most unclear part of the Bots for me. Can anyone suggest a list of priorities?
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gatorskin wrote:
Helpful!

I'd also gladly take other opinions on this question I asked:

2. I'm never sure how/when the Bots should advance/not advance Second Front and USSR Declares War on Japan, and with how much priority. This is the single most unclear part of the Bots for me. Can anyone suggest a list of priorities?


The priority and conditions for these are pretty clearly articulated on the bot sheets. What exactly are you confused about? I would love to help but I am not sure what is unclear to you.
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Rev. Bastard: I think I have it figured out! But thanks so much for helping.
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OK, one more question. Mark Herman has gone on record as approving this:

- 1st choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track onto the active Bot track. If a choice is needed, I choose the closest from the active Bot.
- 2nd choice: If not possible, I move an issue which is already onto the active Bot track (so possibility to capture it).
- 3rd choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track toward the center of the table.


The only problem here is that the Bots often just leave tasty issues they'd surely want just laying unclaimed in the center space. What about adding:

-4th choice: I try to move an issue from the center space onto the active Bot track.

In fact, I almost feel like this should be the 3rd choice, not the 4th. Or should I just trust Mark? (I should probably just trust Mark.)
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reverendunclebastard wrote:
Deanolium wrote:
So you're all viewing "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." as a priority list? I.e., if you can, advance an issue onto the Soviet Track. Otherwise move the issue which you can pull closest to the soviet track. And in both cases, if there's a choice, pick randomly?

I've been viewing it as all part of one clause. So advance an issue onto the Soviet track, with the priority going to the issue that's closest to the Soviet track.

That'll totally make a difference!


I am pretty sure the "priority list" interpretation was triggered by a response from the designer somewhere in the forums. It was already my interpretation since it says "closest to Soviet track" not closest to the end of the Soviet track, which would suggest the other interpretation. Once an issue is anywhere on the Soviet track, it is as "close" as it can get to that track so where on the track it ends up is not relevant.

Also, if you are executing the bots properly they should be using cards in order from 2nd highest to lowest, so if the bot is trying to maximize the effectiveness of a card, it would consider any issue that can reach its track, not just the closest.

It also makes the most sense from a gameplay perspective as the more unpredictable the bots are the bigger the challenge. The game is way too easy solo if the bots lose their unpredictability. Players who "choose" the "most sensible" issue to advance instead of rolling randomly seem, anecdotally, to enjoy the game less.


Seems I was remembering badly!

MarkHerman wrote:
Shako wrote:
Hello,

here is the way I play:
- 1st choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track onto the active Bot track. If a choice is needed, I choose the closest from the active Bot.
- 2nd choice: If not possible, I move an issue which is already onto the active Bot track (so possibility to capture it).
- 3rd choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track toward the center of the table.


Correct


That being said, I have had great success using the priorities I originally answered with, in spite of them disagreeing with Mr. Herman's answer. Given his usual responses, I don't think he would mind at all...


I read it more the way you do, as opposed to the response to Shako's questions from Mark. I would never have come up with those priorities from the player aids... I have just been playing it so that I randomly choose between any issues that could reach the bot's track first, and if there aren't any, randomly choosing among the others.
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smittyohio wrote:
reverendunclebastard wrote:
Deanolium wrote:
So you're all viewing "advance an issue onto the Soviet Track, move an issue closest to Soviet track, if choice pick randomly." as a priority list? I.e., if you can, advance an issue onto the Soviet Track. Otherwise move the issue which you can pull closest to the soviet track. And in both cases, if there's a choice, pick randomly?

I've been viewing it as all part of one clause. So advance an issue onto the Soviet track, with the priority going to the issue that's closest to the Soviet track.

That'll totally make a difference!


I am pretty sure the "priority list" interpretation was triggered by a response from the designer somewhere in the forums. It was already my interpretation since it says "closest to Soviet track" not closest to the end of the Soviet track, which would suggest the other interpretation. Once an issue is anywhere on the Soviet track, it is as "close" as it can get to that track so where on the track it ends up is not relevant.

Also, if you are executing the bots properly they should be using cards in order from 2nd highest to lowest, so if the bot is trying to maximize the effectiveness of a card, it would consider any issue that can reach its track, not just the closest.

It also makes the most sense from a gameplay perspective as the more unpredictable the bots are the bigger the challenge. The game is way too easy solo if the bots lose their unpredictability. Players who "choose" the "most sensible" issue to advance instead of rolling randomly seem, anecdotally, to enjoy the game less.


Seems I was remembering badly!

MarkHerman wrote:
Shako wrote:
Hello,

here is the way I play:
- 1st choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track onto the active Bot track. If a choice is needed, I choose the closest from the active Bot.
- 2nd choice: If not possible, I move an issue which is already onto the active Bot track (so possibility to capture it).
- 3rd choice: I try to move an issue from an opponent track toward the center of the table.


Correct


That being said, I have had great success using the priorities I originally answered with, in spite of them disagreeing with Mr. Herman's answer. Given his usual responses, I don't think he would mind at all...


I read it more the way you do, as opposed to the response to Shako's questions from Mark. I would never have come up with those priorities from the player aids... I have just been playing it so that I randomly choose between any issues that could reach the bot's track first, and if there aren't any, randomly choosing among the others.


I know this is an old thread, but it discusses exactly the issues I'm having on my first read through of the bot charts. In fact, I posted a recent thread on this.

I have to say, I did see Mark's response, but it seems so far away from what the rules seem to state, that I have to question whether it is correct. I scoured the forums to see if there was ever another affirmed view on the topic, but didn't find one. So, what is the correct answer? Mark's response, or something else?

Thanks,

Colin
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Also, regarding the second segment of the bullet:

Quote:
moves an issue closest to the XXXXX track


Does "closest" refer to the start or end point of the issue?

Thanks,

Colin
 
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Mark’s anwser was correct. That being said, Mark (and the rules) make it very clear that the bots are meant to be used more as guidelines.


ColintheFlea wrote:
Also, regarding the second segment of the bullet:

Quote:
moves an issue closest to the XXXXX track


Does "closest" refer to the start or end point of the issue?

Thanks,

Colin


End point.
 
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supermaxv wrote:
Mark’s anwser was correct. That being said, Mark (and the rules) make it very clear that the bots are meant to be used more as guidelines.


ColintheFlea wrote:
Also, regarding the second segment of the bullet:

Quote:
moves an issue closest to the XXXXX track


Does "closest" refer to the start or end point of the issue?

Thanks,

Colin


End point.


Are you saying that because Mark is the designer, and his word counts? Or because that is how you also read the rules, and Mark just confirmed what you thought?

Thanks,

Colin
 
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ColintheFlea wrote:
supermaxv wrote:
Mark’s anwser was correct. That being said, Mark (and the rules) make it very clear that the bots are meant to be used more as guidelines.


ColintheFlea wrote:
Also, regarding the second segment of the bullet:

Quote:
moves an issue closest to the XXXXX track


Does "closest" refer to the start or end point of the issue?

Thanks,

Colin


End point.


Are you saying that because Mark is the designer, and his word counts? Or because that is how you also read the rules, and Mark just confirmed what you thought?

Thanks,

Colin


Because he’s the designer and it fits the internal logic of some of his other solitaire designs.
 
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Ah, OK. Then I think my decision to put it up for sale is probably the right choice for me. I picked it up this week, but of course, wasn't able to review the bot charts beforehand. Knowing that there are disconnects this large, and knowing myself, this probably isn't going to be the right fit.

Oh well. You win some, you lose some.

Thanks,

Colin
 
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FWIW I actually tried steering / warning you away from Churchill two years ago on a thread at 1PG as it seemed to be the antithesis of the kind of solitaire game system you like. I hope you find what you are looking for.
 
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supermaxv wrote:
FWIW I actually tried steering / warning you away from Churchill two years ago on a thread at 1PG as it seemed to be the antithesis of the kind of solitaire game system you like. I hope you find what you are looking for.


Oh, I only blame myself. It was a touch and go decision, but a Miniature Market sale got me to bite. I probably shouldn't have. Lesson learned. I want to be a wargamer, as the topics are interesting to me, and that's what keeps me making the wrong choice. But I probably am not one. I'm hoping I can turn it around quickly.

Colin
 
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There is a much more "specific" set of solo rules by a user that work very well. Might be worth giving them a try before you jump ship!

Never Surrender - A Solitaire Scenario for Churchill
 
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