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Subject: Explain this to an idiot rss

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Ryucoo
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Hi, this game looks great and sounds like a cracker. But I'm just not quite getting it - might be lack of sleep or I'm just a bit of a muppet but: what is the point of winning tricks in this game?

I get that you are trying to take tricks that don't break the rules, else you pay the ruler a fine. Got it. But in other trick taking games don't you usually count up how many tricks you have won and this somehow adds to your score or aids your game in another way, like making you first player, or the Caller of trumps or whatever? In this game it doesn't seem to matter how many tricks you've won. Winner of the most tricks doesn't get any florins, nor does he become the next ruler or anything. So why try and win tricks at all? Is that the point? Is the strategy to try and not win tricks? What is my strategy here?

Sorry, it's probably so obvious I'm missing it - but I don't get why I should try and win tricks while avoiding the edicts - why win tricks at all if you gain nothing from it?

Help an idiot, let me know!

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Justin Jacobson
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Every trick you don't take is one that someone else is taking. It's never good to take tricks (unless you're sinning of course). For the ruler, it's really about opportunity cost. If you take forbidden cards, that's money you don't get if someone else had taken them.

When I'm teaching the game, I often reference Hearts. Indulgence is like Hearts on steroids. In hearts, the rule is "don't take any hearts or the queen of spades". Or, you can try and shoot the moon and take all the hearts and the queen of spades. But it's never inherently good to take tricks. In Indulgence, there are 20 rules ("edicts"), and shooting the moon is called "sinning", but same principle. This is a special kind of trick-taking game, sometimes called an "evasion" game.

Hope that helps.
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João Menezes
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You start the game with 30 florins and you can only earn more if you are the ruler (and the sinner doesn´t win the hand). So you are, most of the time trying to avoid losing your money.
 
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Evan Stegman
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Ryucoo wrote:
...what is the point of winning tricks in this game?

...


This is a trick avoidance game: you don't want to win tricks. There are some circumstances you might want to take tricks but but generally speaking, the goal is avoiding taking tricks that hurt you; not taking tricks.

Other examples of trick avoidance games:

Hearts
500
Sticheln
Pepper
Trickster
 
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Kevin Bodman
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Hi,

As others have said, this is mostly trick avoidance.

However if you are last to play in a trick and there is no penalty card played, you could win this one giving you the lead for the next trick, which may give you an advantage.

Regards
 
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Ryucoo
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Ah, ok - so you are playing cards in the hope to draw out winning cards from the other players?

So if a blue 5 is played, and I have a blue 3 and a blue 6, I can (and should) play the 3, right?

Otherwise I guess it's tactical to play a card close to the highest, but not higher than it - so you burn through your 'best' cards?

It's a loooong time since I played a trick taking game, as you can tell I'm not very knowledgeable about the subject!


EDIT: ahhhh, now I see. If I know or think the trick will not contain penalties, I could try an win it with my highest card to burn it (and thus reduce my hands winning potential). So I'm really trying to burn my highest cards in the safest way possible.
 
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Elstree
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That's the basic gist, but Indulgence is what is sometimes called a "variable contract" game, which means that what you are trying to accomplish (or more accurately, avoid) changes from round to round.

In Indulgence, the contracts ("Edicts") are things like "don't take any of the blue suit", "don't take any sixes", or "don't take the first or last tricks". The strategy can change depending on what the Edict is that round. For example, if you're trying to avoid taking cards of the blue suit, you might try to void your hand of another suit so you can rid yourself of your blue cards more quickly. If you're trying to avoid taking the last trick but you have a bunch of high cards in your hand, you might want to seize the lead during the middle of the round to rid yourself safely of your highest cards, and then try to throw away the lead when there are just a few tricks remaining. Things can get even harder if you choose to "sin" i.e. attempt to take all the forbidden cards.

This is the real appeal of Indulgence to me. Unlike games like Spades or Hearts, where you have the same goal round after round (leading to rather mechanical and monotonous card play) Indulgence keeps things fresh by forcing you to adapt your card play to a new contract every round.
 
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