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Subject: Central Supply Variant (for 2 to 5+ players) rss

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Kirk Roberts
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I wanted this game to accommodate more people. This variant does that and — in my opinion — evens out the game play. If I’ve incorporated one of your ideas, I hope you consider it as a compliment. Please enjoy.

Setup
Put the crocodile in the middle. All other animals go into a central supply. The first player gets the red die. Play proceeds around the table.

Basics (rules introduction)
This is how I introduce the game.
1. In this game we’ll be stacking animals on top of the crocodile. The goal is to avoid causing collapses.
2. On your turn, you will roll the die and then add an animal from the supply to the stack on the crocodile. There are some variations and restrictions which I’ll explain in a bit.
3. If you ever directly cause a collapse — even if it isn’t your turn — you take any one of the fallen animals in front of you as a scorekeeper and return the rest of the fallen animals to the supply. If any of the stack remains, it stays as-is.
4. When there is a collapse, the current player must still finish their turn. There can be multiple collapses in a turn.
5. The game ends when X total fallen animals have been collected. (Note: X is perhaps the number of players, or any number you want. See Game End Options for other ideas.)
6. The person with the lowest number of collected fallen animals is the winner. There can be multiple winners.

Variations / Dice Actions
I recommend all of these variations for a little spice and so everyone gets to directly interact with the stack on their turn. (But you could play with the original rules if you want.)
1. Placement color restriction: when initially placed an animal cannot contact another animal of the same color. Any animal can contact the crocodile (it is a different green).
2. Roll a 1: place any animal from the supply on the crocodile stack.
3. Roll a 2: place any animal from the supply, touching exactly two other animals (can include the crocodile). If there are no animals on the crocodile, simply place any animal.
4. Roll a ?: the other players tell you what animal to place. If the placement color restriction is being used, ignore it when being told what animal to place.
5. Roll a Hand: place any animal from the supply using only your “off” hand.
6. Roll a Crocodile: if 3 or more animals are already on the crocodile, rotate the crocodile 90 degrees (one quarter-turn); do not place an animal. If less than 3 animals are on the crocodile, instead of moving the crocodile place any animal from the supply.

Details (can be shared during the game)
1. It’s okay to use the piece you are placing to (attempt to!) adjust the stack. It is NOT okay to touch the stack in any other way.
2. If only the animal the current player just placed immediately falls off, it is NOT collected as a fallen animal. The current player must try to re-place it successfully.
3. If any animal(s) fall(s) off without obvious blame, return all fallen animals to the supply and continue play.

Game End Options
1. End the game whenever it’s time to play a new game. Perfect for true filler situations.
2. End the game when any player has collected X fallen animals (perhaps 3).
3. End the game when all animals of a certain type have been collected (e.g. all the sheep). Perhaps that type HAS to be collected if it is one of the fallen animals.
4. End the game when X total fallen animals have been collected (total among all players). Perhaps equaling the number of players, e.g. if 5 players are playing the game ends when 5 total fallen animals have been collected.
5. Make up your own end condition.
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Monica B.
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Re: Central Supply Variant (for 2 - 5+ players)
These are clever and awesome. Can't wait to try it out, we love the stock rules but these, especially the modified dice, seem like they will kick up the suspense a notch or two. Nice work!
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Kirk Roberts
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Re: Central Supply Variant (for 2 - 5+ players)
Thanks, Monica! I can't take credit for it all, some ideas have been taken from other posts in the forum. Definitely the crocodile rotating, maybe others.

This is the only way I want to play this game now. Hope you enjoy it!
 
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Chris Mcpherson
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Re: Central Supply Variant (for 2 - 5+ players)
We own every set of Animal upon Animal and have played the game a lot! We burned out on it a bit and I had always disliked the basic rules but never was able to find a perfect variant. I just read your whole post and definitely think this is a solid option and will probably try it out tonight.

We have always used the current piece to be able to adjust the stack so I love that you included that.

I also really like that a collapse only results in 1 collected animal and promotes constant building and always going up.

I love the color restriction variant and all the other ones and plan to use them all at once.

Hopefully, this will bring my beloved animals back to the table!
 
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Kirk Roberts
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Re: Central Supply Variant (for 2 - 5+ players)
Re4isnumber1 wrote:
We own every set of Animal upon Animal and have played the game a lot! We burned out on it a bit and I had always disliked the basic rules but never was able to find a perfect variant. I just read your whole post and definitely think this is a solid option and will probably try it out tonight.

We have always used the current piece to be able to adjust the stack so I love that you included that.

I also really like that a collapse only results in 1 collected animal and promotes constant building and always going up.

I love the color restriction variant and all the other ones and plan to use them all at once.

Hopefully, this will bring my beloved animals back to the table!

Awesome, thanks for your notes!

This variant (and collection of variants) has certainly invigorated the game for me. In addition to being more fun as a "featured" game I've found that this has become the PERFECT filler so I tend to bring it often. You can literally play it for just a few minutes, and it has a highly variable player count. Great for those times when another table says "five more minutes" and you're skeptical that's true (but it might be). Dump out the pieces, have someone roll the die, and explain as people take their turns. End whenever you want.
 
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Kirk Roberts
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This game came out again after a long layoff and we played two players with this variant. Still love it over the rules as written for any player count. Now the only thing I wish I could change about the game is to make the pieces all a little bigger for more table presence!
 
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Chris Mcpherson
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Finally got around to pulling this game out. Immediately came to find these rules. Played with my son, to 5 points, a best out of three. So far we both won one game. We are about to play the tiebreaker but had to pause for lunch. I think these rules are going to get this game back to the table a lot more. This will be our 51st game of Animal Upon Animal, yeah!
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