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Vast: The Crystal Caverns» Forums » Variants

Subject: Dragon vs Cave or Cave vs Dragon rss

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Massimiliano della Rovere
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I have played this role variant twice: once against a human player and once playing it in solo mode.

I think this is combination is very hard for the Cave, because:
* the dragon's movements, while underground, are not hindered by Dark Tiles and Walls and, when awake, Wing cards (Gem) are an easy way to overcome walls and landslides
* Dragon Gems, while not a source for Omen token, are useful for the dragon and nothing can remove them until the Cave is collapsing
* once a good part of Sloth cubes are in Wakefulness track, the dragon can use cards (and gems) to Slither cubes onto the single slots in the Pride section and has no reason to uncover more tiles, effectively slowing down tile deployment rate

I think that in this role variant, dragon gems should be treated like Treasure and Crystal token, a source for Omen tokens.

What do you think?
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Kyle
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The Cave should use Past Plunder as often as possible.

The Dragon can pick up one, maybe two treasures each turn, and once it has picked up four the cost/benefit ratio for going after more drops off considerably.

Once the Cave gets more treasures on the map than the Dragon can reasonably pick up each turn, it can start to steamroll.
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Massimiliano della Rovere
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Woelf wrote:
The Cave should use Past Plunder as often as possible.

The Dragon can pick up one, maybe two treasures each turn, and once it has picked up four the cost/benefit ratio for going after more drops off considerably.

Once the Cave gets more treasures on the map than the Dragon can reasonably pick up each turn, it can start to steamroll.


I think this game really deserves a strategy guide (I know some people like to discover strategies on their own) for each "role variation".

Kyle, you could add a wiki to the Vast website
 
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Massimiliano della Rovere
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5 games in a row with the Cave vs Dragon roles (I play it in solitaire).

The Cave never won. Each time the dragon escapes there are not less than 10 tiles in the tile stack (plus the 3 in the Cave's hand).

Either I am playing some rules wrong, or it is really really hard for the Dragon...
 
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B C Z
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It's hard for the Cave.
 
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Kyle
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The Cave is difficult to play solo well because of how extensively it uses the hidden tile information.
Knowing, even subconsciously, where specific tiles (especially Events) are located tends to give an unfair advantage to the Dragon.



A few other things to look at:
1) Make sure the Dragon is only removing one Sloth cube per category each turn. In particular, revealing multiple Event tiles in the same turn will not remove multiple cubes. You also can't get credit for revealing an Event tile AND for not moving or placing a second/third gem on the same turn.

2) The Cave needs to be very deliberate with placement of tiles the Dragon wants.
---Try to keep Crystal tiles as far from the entrance as possible, and avoid (at all costs) putting any in a straight line from the entrance. Every time the Dragon needs to change direction it costs an extra Wing.
---Try to place Event tiles in places where revealing them will add multiple new tiles to the map.
---Try to cluster Events so the Dragon reveals several at once. Only the first each turn counts, so any extras that get revealed are wasted by the Dragon, but help the Cave.

3) The Cave should use Spores when possible. Every use pushes back against the Dragon's victory condition and will slow it down. Don't bother once it wakes up because you can't put it back to sleep no matter how many cubes get returned.

4) Don't move any of the Dragon's cubes at the start. That's meant to offset the Cave running away with the game in the later stages, but if the Dragon is winning too easily you don't need it.
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B C Z
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Woelf wrote:
2) The Cave needs to be very deliberate with placement of tiles the Dragon wants.
---Try to keep Crystal tiles as far from the entrance as possible, and avoid (at all costs) putting any in a straight line from the entrance. Every time the Dragon needs to change direction it costs an extra Wing.
---Try to place Event tiles in places where revealing them will add multiple new tiles to the map.
---Try to cluster Events so the Dragon reveals several at once. Only the first each turn counts, so any extras that get revealed are wasted by the Dragon, but help the Cave.


Watching the Dragon be upset when they reveal 3 Event tiles in a single action is priceless.

Also, try to make it likely that the Dragon will reveal empty sides as often as possible, since the Cave can't light up tiles on their own.

If the Cave is forced to drop a crystal too close to the entrance, the Dragon *will* find it that is most likely the tile they'll use to surface once awakened.

Figuring out a way to make that as far away from the Entrance (in both distance and not in a straight line) should be an early goal for the Cave.

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Yan Bertrand
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byronczimmer wrote:

If the Cave is forced to drop a crystal too close to the entrance, the Dragon *will* find it that is most likely the tile they'll use to surface once awakened.

Figuring out a way to make that as far away from the Entrance (in both distance and not in a straight line) should be an early goal for the Cave.

Well, isn't that 90% up to luck, really?
 
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