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Subject: How To Approach Each Edict rss

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Ryucoo
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Ok so this game is great and we enjoyed our first couple of plays last night. I remember mucking about with Dragon Master when I was young and this is a fantastic reimagining of that game. I’m also a fan of the game Hearts, so Edicts like “Don’t take any (family)” feel familiar and I know where the strategy is regarding how to best play my cards; I can also roughly explain the basic approach to new players.

However with the less familiar Edicts a rough plan isn’t leaping out at me yet! I wondered if there were any fans of the game out there, or if the designers themselves, might chip in with some of the basics on how to handle them? With such a varied and deep strategic game, I thought it would be fun to discuss.

Just the beginner Edicts to start with…

Don’t be the first player to take three tricks:
So unlike X<suit>, I guess you can’t be burning your best cards early doors on safe hands, so will be saving your high cards until late game when it doesn’t matter?

Don’t take any 2s or 3s:
This seems tricky (no pun intended) to me – how does one avoid picking up cards with such a low value? No ideas how to play this one, other than hoping you have a lot of 1s…

Don’t take any 6’s:
This makes a little more sense: 1-5 are basically safe cards, play those until the coast is clear to lay your trick taking cards safely, and look to burn your best cards on safe hands. Is there anything I’m missing here?

Don’t take the first or last trick:
I guess you don’t want to lead the last trick, so you don’t want that killer end game streak where you keep taking everyone’s discards! Middle game is time to burn your best I suppose…

Don’t take the last of (family):
This one seems the most intriguing. I suppose you burn through your highest as best you can, beginning with that family. It will usually come down to somebody having the 2 and somebody else having the 1. Bit of counting involved – if you have the 1, you know you are safe to win anything until it gets towards the end game, where of course you don’t want to end up leading the last trick with it, unless you know a higher of the suit is out there! If you have the 2, you are kinda safe too but know you can get busted by the 3. And so forth up the chain… Man, it makes my head spin a little!

I look forward to hearing people chipping in with a basic approach to these very different Edicts.
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JR Honeycutt
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Hey there!

In my experience, a lot of the game is voiding suits (setting yourself up to not have any cards in a suit so you can freely play off-suit), and counting cards.

Don’t be the first player to take three tricks:
As above - void yourself quickly and you'll be fine. If you get the lead, lead your lowest card in your smallest suit (the one you have the fewest cards in).

Don’t take any 2s or 3s:
Voiding is the way to do this - sure, you can play 1's, but that's a step towards the effective goal of "don't take any tricks with 2's or 3's in them" which makes it easier to frame.

Don’t take any 6’s:
Same as above, with more flexibility.

Don’t take the first or last trick:
Same - if you're void on the suit that's led in the last trick, then you're fine. If you're struggling with that, you can do a pretty good job here by just treating it as "don't lead the last trick" and you'll be 75% likely to be successful


Don’t take the last of (family):
This one is a card counting exercise! There are 9 cards in each suit... which means that if a suit is led twice and all three players follow suit (8 cards total) there will be one card floating around. That card will either be led (in which case the person who leads it will get it) or it will be played when that player is void in another suit (in which case the player who leads will get it).

Pay attention to how many cards are left in each suit. Let that guide when you take tricks (or when you avoid leading).


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Ryucoo
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Great stuff, notes have been taken!

Cracked the game out for a new bunch last night. Wasn't sure how well it was going down at first but after a few hands everyone was really into it. The variation of the edicts really keeps things interesting right to the end, the scoring is nice and easy to manage and the component quality makes what is a simple/small game feel important enough to be a main game on games night.

One player had a bit of a problem separating the colours - the blue and purple are a little close, and on the other hand the purple and red are somewhat similar too. If the colours were lighter and more saturated, this would be better. But we always called out the colours anyway and she got used to the symbols reasonably quickly.

The mark of a great game is the yearning to play it again. Love it and thanks for the tips.
 
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John Furlong
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While how to approach some of the more basic edicts seems obvious to players experienced at trick taking games, the game is given a second level of depth by the "sinner" aspect of the edicts.

Take "Don’t be the first player to take three tricks:". This edict might seem an obvious choice to take if you have a hand full of low cards. But that is just a setup to another player to take the sinner side of the card. An opponent with 2 nines or nine-eight combo will take the sinner side and run the first three tricks using the ring for the third trick. It's a very simple play.

So if you are the ruler and want to take the "Don’t be the first player to take three tricks:", you clearly need to have some good cards to defend against such a play.

I think that's what makes this such a classic game. Some of the edicts are hard to predict - "don't take pairs" or "don't take 6's" and the easier to understand edicts require some thought because you don't want to set up someone to take the sin.
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