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Three Kingdoms Redux» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Emperor Wei rss

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Jon Snow
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I just finished my first solitaire and live player games of Three Kingdoms Redux (a short session report should appear soon). Both games ended on Turn 8 when Wei became the Emperor. As Wei, I decided that I'd generally be better ending the game more quickly. As Shu in the live game, I fought him tooth and nail a couple of times, but the best result was only when the two allies managed to deprive him of a gold collecting option, so even though he won the Emperor controlling action space, he was not able to advance on the rank track!

In both games, the other two states were almost never able to win the control Han Emperor space!

Wei did in fact win the first game, but barely:
Final Score: Wei 29, Wu 28, Shu 27.

Wei did not win the second game:
Final Score: Wei 12, Wu 36, Shu (Me) 31.

So my questions for more experienced players are:

1. Do you also find Wei very strong in going for the Control Han Emperor space?

2. Is it generally beneficial for Wei to try and end the game relatively early?

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Dvonn Yinsh
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It is very strong for any of the three kingdoms to go for the emperor track. Wei does not have an advantage there. Remember that the Han space alternates between an administrative and military action.

Ending the game early is situational. Any of the three kingdoms will only do that if they're going to win the game. Otherwise, why would you?
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Jean-Yves Moyen
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The emperor space is a powerful space for a lot of various reasons (that's why it's so damn expensive). Wei having more generals in the early game has a slightly easier time to get it, but soon Wu has the same number of generals (or even more if one Wei general stays with the emperor…)

Thus said, I do find the Wei score on your second game very low. Being emperor should grant 10 VP by itself (5VP for the rank + 5VP for 1st place in the rank category). Thus a total of 12 VP means that Wei basically did not manage to get any points elsewhere. This probably shows that exclusively pursuing the emperor is not a really viable strategy…

I'm also a bit surprised by Wei not having the gold to pay for the emperor. Wei starts with 3 gold, so a single "Demand Tribute" action is enough to reach 5 gold, enough to go to emperor. And there is little way for the other players to prevent Wei from demanding tribute in the early game (or to send Cao Cao to Develop Marketplace and Collect taxes on turns 1-2, for 4 gold). As Wei, if I'm planning an emperor rush, I'd certainly make sure I have the gold before the other realise what I'm doing an try to block the gold flow…
And of course, if the other start blocking the gold generating space on turn 1, that mean they're not taking the military spaces and I can just change strategy…

I've seen a pure emperor rush by Wei once, where he ascended on turn 5. We (I was Shu) only realised he was rushing by turn 3 or so. On turn 4 Wu made a weak attempt to block him, and on turn 5 we computed that only Wu could block him and only by sending all his generals to the emperor, Wu preferred to use more action to score elsewhere (borders, tribal relations, development, …) In the end, Wu won.
I have a global feeling that while the emperor is a very good spot, an emperor rush is not really a winning strategy… (it could depend on the generals, of course).
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Dvonn Yinsh
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Arguably, the Emperor track is the strongest of all the scoring tracks. It is so hotly contested in our group, no one kingdom ever gets a solo run at it. While Wei has an administrative advantage in the early game, he rarely gets a military advantage. Our Wu and Shu players always has a military-5 so that Wei doesn't get an uncontested run at the emperor track.

Our group is some 25+games in, and rarely has anyone gotten 12 VPs. The player who gets to Emperor rarely gets the 2VP Han token.
Remember that the Han token does NOT change hands in the last round of the game. The player who got Han in the penultimate round gets the 2VPs. The only way for an Emperor to get 12 VPs is if he got Han back to back in the last two rounds of the game. That's just poor gameplay if the other two kingdoms allowed that.
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