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Subject: Best way to jump in solo? rss

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Felix Rodriguez
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Hi All,

So for now, I plan to play this Solo, as it will be a few weeks till I can get someone crazy enough to play this with me. So, what's the easiest way to play solo here? There seem to be a lot of options which is making me confused.
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Adam
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Kaelistus wrote:
Hi All,

So for now, I plan to play this Solo, as it will be a few weeks till I can get someone crazy enough to play this with me. So, what's the easiest way to play solo here? There seem to be a lot of options which is making me confused.

I'm not sure if you can play it with just the basic game, but I found the CEO variant from this playthrough to be very interesting. It seemed like the board meetings forced the player to keep the game moving forward, but I haven't dug into other variants yet.
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Francisco Colmenares
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I've heard good things about the CEO Solitaire variant, Hermes Falls also works. These are in the reference guide. I believe both of them can be played with just the Basic rules (but with the addition of the Solar Cycle as a clock)
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Adam Gastonguay
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Yeah, CEO is the most sandboxish of the solitaire variants. Unfortunately, ALL of the solitaire bits require using all of the modules, which can be a bit overwhelming.

My recommendations:

Play a basic game by yourself. Just one company using the basic rules. Spend 2WTs for every bit of tech. Try to make factories. This will take a long time. It'll be a pain in the ass. You'll wonder how in the hell you're supposed to do this with other people trying to fight you for parts.

Eventually, though, you'll be able to slap together a rocket and you'll make a factory. Then you'll be making black cards from it, and you'll see the awesomeness that black cards bring and how far you can get with those.

THEN add the Supports module. Do the same thing, play by yourself. 2WTs for each tech and 2 WTs for each support. Get 4WTs for free market. Build factories. See the NEW black side of cards. Add in slingshots because they don't really add much rules-wise. Suddenly you're flying around the solar-system, and you see the possibility to reach Saturn, Uranus and further. Oooo, you start to see why people love this game.

Events? Sure, let's through those in. What's the worst that'll happen? WHAT BLEW UP!?!?!?!?

THEN add your Bernal. Well this is nice, you can boost out of that stinking Van Allen belt and know right away if that blows everything up. And it moves? And you can sell those sweet, sweet black cards way out in space? Awesome!

THEN add colonists. Awwwwww yeah. Now we're cooking with fire.

THEN add futures. Your sandbox is almost complete.

Through this all, you're just playing for fun, there's no other players trying to stop you, but you're finding that bad math and your own mistakes are stopping you and you're constantly restarting because halfway to Ceres you go "D'oh, I can't use that Radiator," or "Wait, I forgot to do a mass adjustment. I can't land there! Dangit!" But by now you're making less and less mistakes and you're building massive mass drivers out in the OORT belt ready to throw a hollowed-out asteroid filled with brave colonists ready to populate a new star.

THEN add the boardroom filled with a-hole investors. Then you have to race.

After that, try to do Werner's Star. You thought the investors were in a hurry? Try a kid dying of cancer!

The other solitaire bits are a fun diversion from those two.

Oh, and multiplayer? You'll love all the knowledge you've gained from doing this, but then you'll see just how evil your friends can be when you're putting your last WT on the line for that Reactor you HAVE to have to make your rocket worth a damn, and NASA, who happens to have an extra WT because you just launched something outbids you out of spite.....
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Adam Gastonguay
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colmenarez wrote:
I've heard good things about the CEO Solitaire variant, Hermes Falls also works. These are in the reference guide. I believe both of them can be played with just the Basic rules (but with the addition of the Solar Cycle as a clock)


Oh yeah, I forgot, Hermes fall uses only the Supports module. That's a fun one, too. Plays quickly and dooms humanity if you fail.
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Gator Skin
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I don't have it in front of me, but the 3rd edition looks to have several solo scenarios. No idea which to start with, though (I haven't played yet!).
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Erich Cranor
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I played in a teaching game a couple years ago so I wasn't truly starting from scratch. But all the important details were gone after that much delay so I still feel like I was trying to learn the game.

Although introducing in steps would have been my instinct, I wanted to try CEO so I threw everything in. Sure that made for a lot of delays to read rules, and a few rollbacks. But that's no problem with solitaire, and I think the experience was fine. (great really)

I think the modules are more necessary for group play where rules questions bogging things down is much more problematic.

Also, I was playing on tabletop simulator and that made rollbacks when needed pretty easy. I might still choose that option for solo CEO runs even after my copy arrives, rather than tie up the table space.

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Felix Rodriguez
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gatorskin wrote:
I don't have it in front of me, but the 3rd edition looks to have several solo scenarios. No idea which to start with, though (I haven't played yet!).


It does. It has 4 solo scenarios + Interstellar. But one of these is a somewhat idiotic mini card game and the rest all looked like not the easiest thing to learn the game.

CEO doesn't specifically say you need modules but since the victory condition is to accomplish a future, you at least need that and dependent modules.

I will follow Adam's advice. My box arrives tomorrow!!
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Victor Caminha
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Kaelistus wrote:
CEO doesn't specifically say you need modules but since the victory condition is to accomplish a future, you at least need that and dependent modules.

I will follow Adam's advice. My box arrives tomorrow!!


Sorry, I had forgotten to state in the CEO rules the need to use at least one of
the following modules: Colonists, GW/TW thrusters, Freighter.

That said, I heartily recommend what Adam said about experimenting solo without a scenario first. You probably don't want to learn High Frontier with a shareholder meeting breathing down your neck
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Greg Love
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Not really on topic, but you may find this interesting:

Otherworlds reveals visions of the solar system captured by robot spacecraft:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-16/otherworlds-space-sola...
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Bart Rachemoss
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CthulhuKid's advice is amazing! The only thing I would add is to watch Rahdo's runthrough of High Frontier. I think it will help you learn how to play the basic game by yourself which is the first step in CthulhuKid's recipe for High Frontier nirvana.
 
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BitJam wrote:
CthulhuKid's advice is amazing! The only thing I would add is to watch Rahdo's runthrough of High Frontier. I think it will help you learn how to play the basic game by yourself which is the first step in CthulhuKid's recipe for High Frontier nirvana.

Is this the only youtube video of this wonderful game? I hoped there would be much much more...
 
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Dom Rougier
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Casey080 wrote:
I hoped there would be much much more...


What kind of thing were you looking for?

I've been meaning for ages to do a video, but not a tutorial - more a "what does a burn mean" kind of thing, illustrating the concepts. A bit like this really.
 
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Brendan McGuire
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I'd pay* to see some in-depth tutorials for 3rd Edition.


* compliments
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Dom Rougier
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I wrote this the other day, as a brief "this is what the basic game of High Frontier looks like".

The challenge of doing a detailed tutorial is just the breadth of the thing - there's a gulf of difference between "how the rules work" and "how to play", and even just "how the rules work" isn't especially easy.

It's still tempting to do something though.
 
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Bart Rachemoss
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Casey080 wrote:
Is this the only youtube video of this wonderful game? I hoped there would be much much more...

There are 23 videos on BGG for the 2nd edition but IMO Rahdo's runthrough is far and away the best one for learning how to play. I think creating a good teaching video for this game is a real challenge. Undead Viking left the following comment under Rahdo's video:
Quote:
WOW - well done. This game is a monster...and you pulled it off. I have tried to sit down and do a video on this sucker about a half dozen times...and you did it.

If I could somehow give you a thousand thumbs I would, but instead, just bask in the glow of my admiration and respect.

Rahdo and Jen did not enjoy the High Frontier experience and now they stay away from it and other games like it, such as Leaving Earth. It was possibly the worst gaming experience they've ever had. Maybe there is a problem with finding a non-empty intersection between people who know/enjoy this game and people who are skilled in making excellent teaching videos. I'd love to see a Ricky Royal video for HF3e but I don't think it's ever going to happen.

The rulebooks for this game have also been a big challenge. They've been greatly improved in the 3rd edition but there is still room for further improvement. I'm reminded of this xkcd cartoon. Perhaps making a good teaching video is even more challenging than making a good rulebook.

I hope this 3rd edition inspires the creation of more videos and other tools to help make this game easier for newcomers (including me) to get into.

I see I've been ninja'ed. I'd pay money for a good video tutorial for HF3e.
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Dom Rougier
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...okay, I'll give it a go.

It will have to wait until I have the 3rd ed in my hands (end of the month in the UK, hopefully), but fundamentally there's no reason why it can't be done - I've taught the thing enough times.

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Adam Gastonguay
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I tried to make my very wordy playthrough basically a transcription of what a video from me would be. I don't have the capability to make a video, so the written word is all you can get from me, I'm afraid.

If I could figure it out (or someone was willing to act as Technical Assistant), I'd gladly do a Twitch session or something of me playing a solo game using Tabletop Simulator, describing all the parts and rambling on and on while I'm playing.
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Pawel Garycki
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And when you are familiar with CEO, try Expert Modules combined with CEO via the variant rules posted on BGG "CEO link to Expert Modules". There are also reference sheets available for the Exploration module to be linked with.
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Erich Cranor
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improove wrote:
And when you are familiar with CEO, try Expert Modules combined with CEO via the variant rules posted on BGG "CEO link to Expert Modules". There are also reference sheets available for the Exploration module to be linked with.

Thanks for calling attention to that! I've been thinking of trying for a starshot win in my CEO game since my Tw thruster seems to support such bold plans. I love the idea of that continuing straight into Intersteller.
 
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Pawel Garycki
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pinbot wrote:
improove wrote:
And when you are familiar with CEO, try Expert Modules combined with CEO via the variant rules posted on BGG "CEO link to Expert Modules". There are also reference sheets available for the Exploration module to be linked with.

Thanks for calling attention to that! I've been thinking of trying for a starshot win in my CEO game since my Tw thruster seems to support such bold plans. I love the idea of that continuing straight into Intersteller.

So you'd also love continuing the HF game from predecessors like Bios Genesis, Megafauna and Origins. There are going to be updated editions of these. You will then start as a primordial life element and end up exiting Interstellar map.
CEO Link to Expert Modules will definitely get you into Interstellar even without a corresponding future. If you are familiar with that link, you may also try "Visions of the Future Glories" variant which adds new glories, some of them Interstellar. There are also technology demonstrations which will enable you to prepare for the Interstellar adventure with some extra abilities.
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Jesus Berjano
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After all this comments my copy can't come soon enough! Saved this thread, it will come very handy when I open that box for the first time. Thanks a lot guys
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Greg
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CthulhuKid wrote:


Play a basic game by yourself. [...]


Is this a fair summary:

The game itself is enough of a challenge that playing the basic game and then adding modules can satisfy as a solo play??

I am also contemplating getting this just for solo play because I fear getting my group to try it.

Can I compare this to Mage Knight Board Game, whose base game has one solo scenario that can satisfy for many many plays?
 
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Pawel Garycki
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HF Solo scenarios require Colonization(advanced) modules. But you can always simulate a 2 player game just to be familiar with the game.
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Erich Cranor
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I'd say solo HF is comparably entertaining to solo Mage Knight and that MK complexity falls between basic HF and HF will all the options.

Note that Mage Knight solo offers more in immediate puzzles with each turns--I mean it's relatively rare in solo HF (at least in CEO) that you have to immediately adapt your longterm plan due to an unlucky event compared to the conundrums in MK with every new hand or tile flip.

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