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Subject: VP award for greenery tiles is too large? rss

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Pavel Kourganov
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Hi all,

After about a dozen of TM plays I feel like greenery tiles give too much VP. When you place the greenery tile, it usually gives you 1TR right away, which impacts your income. Then you get 1VP at the end of the game for each Greenery tile you own. Then you get 1VP per each your city per each Greenery tile. Most of the time you want the tile near the city you own. So that Greenery tiles genereally give you 3-4 VP.

Yes, if oxygen level is at maximum, you'll not get +TR. And yes sometimes Greenery tiles are placed not touching any of your cities purely for a single VP. And more of yes - pretty often it is not only your city that benefits from it on the board.

But let's compare. Temperature rise cost 14MC and bring you +1TR. You can pay for temperature with heat that is fairly cheap. Ocean tile cost 18MC and bring you the same +1TR. But there are less oceans than temperature rises, and tile is a tile - you can have resources from the map, you can have MC cashback from having your tile next to another Ocean tile. Then we have Greenery tiles that cost 23MC and bring you 1-4 (or even up to 5) VP. And they are still tiles that can have even more cashback, claim resources from the map. You can pay for Greenery with trees that are more expensive then heat to procude but easily collectable from the map.

I uderstand that during end of the game everything in your corp should matter. MC production lets you compete for Banker, Stell and Titanium lets your compete for Miner. Heat and Energy lets you compete for Thermalist. Trees let you put tiles and get direct VPs. But then tiles lets you compete for the Landlord award. And bring you too much VPs for its cost besides.

Does anyone thinks the same? Perhaps someone considered cancelling VPs for simply owning the Greenery tile? So at the end of the game you only get VP for placing a Greenery tile next to your city. And for winning the Landlord. And if you don't have a city with a free space next to it, or if Landlord was not founded - then it is your problem, same as having too much steel and titanium without Miner award, or too mush heat without Thermalist award.
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Florian Ruckeisen
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Dertarr wrote:
Does anyone thinks the same?

I don't, and that's after over 30 multiplayer games.
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RyuSora
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The game have a lot of strong combos and strong strategies, thats why there are several 'take that' cards. As the DESIGNER have stated previously "the 'take that' cards are a MUST for the game". If you are going strong on the plant production strategy, you are vulnerable to several events, and vulnerable to animals that eat plants. If i simply ignored all these facts and all my 40 games of tmars, i would simply agree with you. But thats not that case, so i will simply say that Greeneries strategy is ok.
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Dertarr wrote:
Then we have Greenery tiles that cost 23MC and bring you 1-4 (or even up to 5) VP.

That's not really a fair comparison. In order to get more than 2 VP from a greenery tile, you also have to have cities - which also cost a good deal. Standard project cities cost 25. And most card cities reduce your energy production. If you're fortunate enough to get 5 points from a greenery tile - 1 from TR, 1 at the end of the game, and 3 for adjacent cities - then you've earned it!
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Jason Tan
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There are quite a number of "take that" events that directly affect plant resources. So while plants and greenery tiles gives a good VP haul, it's more risky than the other resources. If you're on the unlucky side of things or got into the crosshairs of other players' events, focusing on plant production could even be bad. So no I don't think they're overpowered.
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Dan Cain
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Snapshot wrote:
Dertarr wrote:
Does anyone thinks the same?

I don't, and that's after over 30 multiplayer games.


After over 100 plays I don't either.
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Erik Twice
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You have to remember that greeneries, while important, have several inherent drawbacks.

First, they don'actually improve your economic engine. Spending your time and effort in plants won't let you draw more cards or gain much more resources, it will only give you VPs.

Second, they are both limited and can be taken advatange of by the other players.That is, if the other players start playing cities right the greenery player is left in a worse position than them as they reap the VP benefits without the investment. Worse of all, you are letting them play the high-oxygen cards.

The VP protential of greeneries can also be greatly curtailed by raising oxygen early. If someone gets out one of those iron smelters oxygen will max out extremely quickly reducing the VP potential of greeneries.

I think forests have to be recognized a one of the biggest VP makers in the game but there's more to it than just getting more plants.
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Josh Casey
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One of your opponents could build 3 cities around your greenery. Up to two more with special cards!. That's like a negative 3 point play. Greeneries clearly need buffed.

All joking aside, placing a greenery is better than raising temperature. Plant production also costs a lot more, is more vulnerable to destruction, and requires good tile placement to shine. Owning the cities to get the most out of your greeneries is also costly. Your opponents can also build cities next to your greeneries to score their own points and take key tiles away from you.
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Tiago Soares
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lastalchemist wrote:
Snapshot wrote:
Dertarr wrote:
Does anyone thinks the same?

I don't, and that's after over 30 multiplayer games.


After over 100 plays I don't either.


Absolutely no!

Don't forget that in multiplayer the VPs for greeneries aren't (or may not be) exclusively yours.
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Short answer: No

Long answer: See above posts
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Ted Morris
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Quote:
Does anyone thinks the same?


Nope.

The value of greenery tiles varies a lot in my games. If we've increased the O2 value without using greenery tiles, it makes them less valuable. If you're smart about your city placement you can take advantage of other players greenery tiles so they are less valuable to whoever played them.

I haven't felt the need to house rule greenery tiles after about 20 plays. I don't think I ever will.
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Peter Bakija
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Dertarr wrote:
Does anyone thinks the same? Perhaps someone considered cancelling VPs for simply owning the Greenery tile?


As noted, greenery is fine.

Yeah, when you make a greenery hex, you get a TR bump from the oxygen going up, and then a VP at the end of the game for owning the greenery. But your opponents can also get VPs by putting cities next to your greenery (and if you are making a lot of greenery, your opponents will likely be doing this aggressively), so making a lot of greenery is also giving your opponents a lot of free VPs.

Making greenery is also expensive--$23 by default (bumping temperature or dropping oceans are a much cheaper way to increase your VP/Income engine); 8 plants which are hard to get a lot of the time and a whole lot of the time, you save up 5 or 6 plants, are all "I'm gonna get a greenery for free next turn! Woo!". And then an asteroid hits.

Like I suspect that a lot of your argument about greenery is based in "Econoline seems to win a lot!" more than "Greenery is too good!". Econoline is pretty good, especially when you just start playing, as they are easy to understand and have a built in engine. But in games with 3+ players, if everyone realizes this and just always bombs Econoline's plants, and takes advantage ov their greenery with well placed cities, they turn out to be just pretty average.
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Pavel Kourganov
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Yes, you can try to counter the greeneries with placing cities in good spots. How much do you get by doing that? 2VP most of the time. If you're lucky to get especially good place then it is 3VP. Almost unreal is 4VP (at the moment of placing a city). The city cost 25MC and give +1MC production. The greenery tile cost 23VP and bring the same 2-3VP on their own. And +TR if oxygen is still below max. There is no much need in trying to place cities unless there is a really good spot. You can spend the same money to place a greenery on your own.

And greeneries may allow you to compete for Banker.
 
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Jeff K
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And city tiles allow you to compete for builder. No, I'm going to agree with everybody else. I have lost count of my TM games, but I can only think back to once when I took the board by storm with greeneries. And that was only because I was playing ecoline corp and my opponents were not paying careful enough attention to what I was doing. Youi can only produce enough greenery to overwhelm the board when you have synergistic plant/microbe cards, and if your opponents are allowing you to get them in the draft, then it is on them. Otherwise with no draft, that many together is unlikely.

For normal greenery, you are inviting others to score with their cities as much as you are scoring with the actual tile, so no I don't buy your argument at all.

As far as your comment with "only 2VP maybe 3 for cities with greenery adjacent," you do realize that your greeneries must be placed next to each other if at all possible, right? This creates lots of high scoring pockets for cities, if you are putting down that many greeneries. Most of the time cities scoring 2VP is actually the lowest we see, not the highest.
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Marcus S
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Dertarr wrote:
Yes, you can try to counter the greeneries with placing cities in good spots. How much do you get by doing that? 2VP most of the time. If you're lucky to get especially good place then it is 3VP. Almost unreal is 4VP (at the moment of placing a city). The city cost 25MC and give +1MC production. The greenery tile cost 23VP and bring the same 2-3VP on their own. And +TR if oxygen is still below max. There is no much need in trying to place cities unless there is a really good spot. You can spend the same money to place a greenery on your own.

You just can't base all the math and assumptions on the cost of a standard project... Generally standard projects really shouldn't be used that much... There are much more efficient ways to place cities than standard projects.
Who cares how many points your city is worth when you play it? It could be worth zero when you play it, but it may still be worth playing because if you are playing greeneries then it will most likely be worth 4-6 by the end.
Dertarr wrote:
And greeneries may allow you to compete for Banker.

How exactly? There is no scenario I can think of that a greenery leads to Mc production except Protected Valley... Cities are much more useful when competing for banker.
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Peter Bakija
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Dertarr wrote:
Yes, you can try to counter the greeneries with placing cities in good spots.


It isn't a matter of "countering" greenery. You spend a bunch of money on greenery. I spend less money on cities and get the same VPs (you spend $46 on two adjacent greenery; I spend $25 on a city where they meet. We get the same end of game VP bonus). You are putting work and resources into setting me up to gain VPs. It is about a wash, VP wise, but I come out ahead money wise. Allowing me to compete with the TR boost.

Other than analysis on paper, what is making you think that greenery is overpowered? Do you see endless games where Econline wins? Do you see endless games where other corps win by spamming out greenery? Is this all just theoretical?
 
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Stefan Tymoshyshyn
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Dertarr wrote:
Yes, you can try to counter the greeneries with placing cities in good spots. How much do you get by doing that? 2VP most of the time. If you're lucky to get especially good place then it is 3VP. Almost unreal is 4VP (at the moment of placing a city). The city cost 25MC and give +1MC production. The greenery tile cost 23VP and bring the same 2-3VP on their own. And +TR if oxygen is still below max. There is no much need in trying to place cities unless there is a really good spot. You can spend the same money to place a greenery on your own.

And greeneries may allow you to compete for Banker.


Why don't you just house rule it to suit your needs. You're obviously alone in your thinking and won't change anyone else's views. Or do you think the designer got it wrong?
 
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Pavel Kourganov
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>> And greeneries may allow you to compete for Banker.
For Landlord, surely. Sorry

Sometimes the games do go unbalanced, so I just want to gather opinions before doing any houserules. And yes, it seems that noone supports my doubts.
 
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Florian Ruckeisen
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I recommend reading the advice on how to counter Ecoline. Since Ecoline's strength obviously lies in producing greenery, the same principles apply to any greenery-heavy playstyle.
 
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Peter Bakija
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Dertarr wrote:
Sometimes the games do go unbalanced, so I just want to gather opinions before doing any houserules. And yes, it seems that noone supports my doubts.


Like, what do you mean "games go unbalanced"? Like, do you mean "Someone won, and they had a lot of greenery"? Or, does Ecoline win all the games, so you think it is that greenery is too powerful? Or do you see that every single game, the person who plays the most greenery wins?

Give us something to work with here.
 
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Joshua Reubens
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The "take that" cards are garbage... they are the worst part of the game... they basically hit a random player so in a four player game that means you have a 33% chance to hit the player that is doing the best (out of the competition). Honestly, other than the length of the game, it is the thing that makes this game iffy for me.
 
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Marcus S
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thaos52002 wrote:
The "take that" cards are garbage... they are the worst part of the game... they basically hit a random player so in a four player game that means you have a 33% chance to hit the player that is doing the best (out of the competition). Honestly, other than the length of the game, it is the thing that makes this game iffy for me.

Umm... no? Name one card where the target is random? You get to choose who you target, and quite often can choose to target no one and not perform that part of the card.
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Örjan Almén
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thaos52002 wrote:
The "take that" cards are garbage... they are the worst part of the game... they basically hit a random player so in a four player game that means you have a 33% chance to hit the player that is doing the best (out of the competition). Honestly, other than the length of the game, it is the thing that makes this game iffy for me.


They aren't random but they are situational, which is both good and bad for both the one playing them or getting hurt by them. It's all about timing your actions both in when and where to attack and how to plan your defense. This is a major part of the game to focus on both your own game and all other players game at the same time.

This is one of the reasons this game isn't a multiplayer solitaire as many want it to stand out as in their campaign against it. You can't sit down in the boat just focusing on your own actions, you need to follow the whole game, calculating risks vs possibilities. Plan your actions so you don't risk your plants (and everything else that can be attacked) more than necessary.
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Pavel Kourganov
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bakija wrote:
Like, what do you mean "games go unbalanced"? Like, do you mean "Someone won, and they had a lot of greenery"? Or, does Ecoline win all the games, so you think it is that greenery is too powerful? Or do you see that every single game, the person who plays the most greenery wins?
Give us something to work with here.


Yes, I still have an impression that Greenery tiles tactic is too powerful, and most of the time people should try to pursue it. I can't say that Ecoline is overpowered though, as other corporation do also have other bonuses that can help building the greenery, like increase in MC production , having many MC at the start and so on. My IMHO is that Tharsis Republic is the strongest. Some corporation do feel weak, but this is another topic.
The tactic with cities+surround with Greeneries brings you the most VP per your effort spent unless you're a lucky enough to get some strong combo. Yesterday I managed to beat Greenery with Saturn Systems by having 6 Saturn cards and about 40VP in cards overall, including 12VP from Science Lab, two cards with 1VP per Jupiter tags and 6 Jupiter tags overall. This was pure luck and I managed to get hand on 3 very strong cards two generations before the finish.

Asteroids, especially the costly ones, are also too powerful. Often the person who finds a couple of them early in the game is the winner. And yes, the Greenery guy also has chance to get the "take that" asteroids and hinder you even more. When you play with 4-5 players, targeting one Greenery guy just gives chances for the other Greenery guy.

The cheapest VP are Milestones, and this mechanic is just brilliant. Then go awards (even better mechanic!). But the next go Greenery tiles with large gap to all the rest. Greenery tiles lets you compete for both Gardener and Landlord. I wait with anticipation for Hellas and Elysium where there are other milestones and awards.

PS. By "Sometimes the games do go unbalance" I meant that it is completely possible that games go out unbalanced by the design. The designers aren't saint. And this topic is for me to find out if the Greenery tiles tactic here makes the game unbalanced in terms of "you should not try other tactics unless you have a really strong card combo"
 
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Pavel Kourganov
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As I mentioned in the first post, I consider houseruling the VPs for Greenery tiles on their own. But I don't want to do it unless I get this idea supported by you folks in the form of "seems interesing and fair, I want to try it in my games too", as I don't want to be arbitrary with my players.

It might be "Get 1VP per 2 Greenery tiles you own at the end of the game". It will make Greenery less powerful but still powerful.
 
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