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Subject: Fighting the Turn Order Food attraction strategy. rss

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The Waffler
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I am looking for strategies for how to compete against an early food attraction buy, like DNANachos. Every game I have played (which has been 3-4 games), the person who has bought an early DNANachos or food attraction has won by 10 - 30 points, way ahead of everyone else.

Usually the people who bought the food attractions early are the ones competing for first.
The whole game is played where they pick everything first, have tons of money, and everyone else picks last, and has no where near as much money. Because of all the money they have they can get more dinosaurs, labs upgrades, specialists, and attractions, just cascading into an amazing game for them. While we struggle to keep up.

Because they can manipulate the turn order, making sure they just stay a couple VPs behind me, AND earn 6 extra coins for doing it. They always get the first and best pick of everything. You can also easily tell by their park and money that they are winning, even though VPs don't show them as "winning".

Anyway, that is why I am asking for advice on how to compete with this strategy, because like I said, they ALWAYS win by 10-30 points, in all my 3 - 4 player games.
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James Potter
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1. Make sure you're paying the correct cost for the attraction. Cost printed on tile + cost of row.

2. While they're initially investing in the attraction, use your money to upgrade paddocks, buy dna, and create dinosaurs. You can then assess whether or not to tank your VP by having too much excitement (not buying security) or to just hit the gas and try to get too big of a VP lead for them to catch up (buying security). Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.
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Kevin Marema
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fishlover21 wrote:
Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.


Also remember you LOSE 1 VP for every patron that gets eaten.

I haven't tried a no/low security approach yet and am curious how it's paying off for people.
 
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Chris Ferejohn
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Valenso wrote:
fishlover21 wrote:
Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.


Also remember you LOSE 1 VP for every patron that gets eaten.



And that's on top of not getting the VPs for placing them at a dino paddock/attraction as well.
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James Potter
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Valenso wrote:
fishlover21 wrote:
Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.


Also remember you LOSE 1 VP for every patron that gets eaten.

I haven't tried a no/low security approach yet and am curious how it's paying off for people.


Yes, read the previous sentence
 
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The Waffler
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fishlover21 wrote:
1. Make sure you're paying the correct cost for the attraction. Cost printed on tile + cost of row.

2. While they're initially investing in the attraction, use your money to upgrade paddocks, buy dna, and create dinosaurs. You can then assess whether or not to tank your VP by having too much excitement (not buying security) or to just hit the gas and try to get too big of a VP lead for them to catch up (buying security). Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.


Yes we are paying the correct cost for attractions. That is the one strategy I haven't tried, tanking my VP on purpose, building a lot of excitement and not caring about eaten people. Usually I have tried the first strategy, just trying to hit the gas and out run them in VP, but that has never worked.

So I will probably try that next, just letting people get eaten, and see how that goes.
 
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Brian Lewis
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monorico wrote:
fishlover21 wrote:
1. Make sure you're paying the correct cost for the attraction. Cost printed on tile + cost of row.

2. While they're initially investing in the attraction, use your money to upgrade paddocks, buy dna, and create dinosaurs. You can then assess whether or not to tank your VP by having too much excitement (not buying security) or to just hit the gas and try to get too big of a VP lead for them to catch up (buying security). Remember you get $1 for every patron before they're eaten by dinosaurs if you choose not to get security.


Yes we are paying the correct cost for attractions. That is the one strategy I haven't tried, tanking my VP on purpose, building a lot of excitement and not caring about eaten people. Usually I have tried the first strategy, just trying to hit the gas and out run them in VP, but that has never worked.

So I will probably try that next, just letting people get eaten, and see how that goes.

Also, remember you can buy DNA and then DISCARD an item from that row. So, if you go first, buy DNA (which will only help you) and then get rid of the food attraction.
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James Potter
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monorico wrote:
Usually I have tried the first strategy, just trying to hit the gas and out run them in VP, but that has never worked.


I find that it's also good to not obsess over keeping your security high enough to handle your total threat. It's okay to have 1 or 2 patrons eaten if you are able to create a new Large Carnivore (7 extra points at the end of the game, plus potentially $3 income).
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Brian Lewis
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Also like others have said - let a few people get eaten. For the food stall strategy to work, the would have to have enough security for people not to get eaten. In this case, let's assume you each have 4 patrons entering the park.

Player A with a food stall has enough security and places all 4 patrons, and uses DNAchos. He would earn $6 and 1 VP.

Player B does not have enough security and 3 get eaten. He would earn -2VP points that round. Depending on turn order previously, this could place him 1st in turn order.
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The Waffler
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scoresfilm wrote:
Also like others have said - let a few people get eaten. For the food stall strategy to work, the would have to have enough security for people not to get eaten. In this case, let's assume you each have 4 patrons entering the park.

Player A with a food stall has enough security and places all 4 patrons, and uses DNAchos. He would earn $6 and 1 VP.

Player B does not have enough security and 3 get eaten. He would earn -2VP points that round. Depending on turn order previously, this could place him 1st in turn order.


In theory that is how I think it would work, but in all the games I have played. The DNANachos guy has easily stayed a couple points behind everyone, so he can pick first.
He can tank his VP like everyone else, get his people eaten, and get bonus cash on top of it.
 
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Dustin Crenshaw
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monorico wrote:
In theory that is how I think it would work, but in all the games I have played. The DNANachos guy has easily stayed a couple points behind everyone, so he can pick first.
He can tank his VP like everyone else, get his people eaten, and get bonus cash on top of it.


Yep been my experience every time. They get the most money and go first. They are likely gonna win.
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Matt Smith
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Make sure you resolve phase 4 in turn order; each player fully resolving his park before the next player goes. If the food vendor player is first in turn order, he has to decide whether to get money or VP from his food vendors without knowing exactly how many VP each other player will score that round.
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Windy City Meeple
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I will always get a Food Attraction early. however i tend to take the money too much and lose out in the end in VP.
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Travis Schneider
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SeerMagic wrote:
monorico wrote:
In theory that is how I think it would work, but in all the games I have played. The DNANachos guy has easily stayed a couple points behind everyone, so he can pick first.
He can tank his VP like everyone else, get his people eaten, and get bonus cash on top of it.


Yep been my experience every time. They get the most money and go first. They are likely gonna win.


I've only played the game twice but both times this is exactly what happened. In both games, one player didn't get a food place until late and then it didn't help, one time being me. Even though I lead in points an entire game and didn't lose almost any patrons (if any at all), I came in last by a lot. And it's not even the fact I was last in turn order (which was frustrating since I could tell I wasn't winning at all), it was the issue that I was struggling with money, which limited my choices quite a bit. Sure, this was my first game and I can learn from my mistakes, but it made it seem like getting a food place is a must.

Jordan tried in our second game to not buy a food place and see what other options he could do. And he also lost by a lot. Isaiah had multiple food shops and the upgrade that reduces Paddock costs. So he always had a lot of money AND always went first since he could keep himself from gaining points. And because of this, there was no way to interfere from him taking all four objectives.

Sure, I'll need to play the game much more to analyze strategies and see if any of my current concerns turn into bigger problems. I trust playtesters, but I know some things slip through. And truly, I still love the game otherwise. I just know to be mindful of these two things-player order and food shops.
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Jeff Kingelin
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I can confirm going big dino(carnivores) and little security helped me control first player and eventually win.

In this game there were 2 others that each had 2 food attractions and I managed to be in first for most of the game once I started killing my guests.

I had turns where I lost 7 patrons due to low security but my excitement level was almost maxed so I had the cash to spend on other things.

I believe I actually had 9 points going into what ended up being the final round while the leader at the time had 35 or so. I ended the game with 93 points (58 from dinos.)

My focus was just getting the DNA to make at least a dinosaur a round and spent a ton in phase 2 just taking 2 advanced DNA and removing something.

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Dave Chandler
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The best I've got is a house rule that dinosaurs are also tracked on the VP track.

Avoiding points on the VP track only works because you can 'bank' them in dinos and objectives. Make the VP track tally everything (or at least dinos) and you're good again. The last player in points gets the benefit of going first as a catch up mechanic.
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Kevin P
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In the expansion there is a plot twist: Choose a random start player. During phase 5 all players bid money for turn order. Highest bidder going first, and ties keeping the current order. All money bid is spent.

I’ve played 2 games with this plot twist and it is amazing.
 
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The Waffler
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MrGencyExit wrote:
In the expansion there is a plot twist: Choose a random start player. During phase 5 all players bid money for turn order. Highest bidder going first, and ties keeping the current order. All money bid is spent.

I’ve played 2 games with this plot twist and it is amazing.


Hmmm... I think I would really like that plot twist. I will have to try it. Seems more balanced than the other first player way.
 
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Edwin Biggs
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monorico wrote:
MrGencyExit wrote:
In the expansion there is a plot twist: Choose a random start player. During phase 5 all players bid money for turn order. Highest bidder going first, and ties keeping the current order. All money bid is spent.

I’ve played 2 games with this plot twist and it is amazing.


Hmmm... I think I would really like that plot twist. I will have to try it. Seems more balanced than the other first player way.


There is another plot twist in the expansion that sets turn order to rotate clockwise each round.
 
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Roman Bode
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Played a game with a friend he 'accidentally' had no one survive his pack for around 5 turns. The addition of the Lawyer gave him a little bonus money and it allowed him to always get first pick.

It was a long game, so towards the end he turned his park into a point grinder and won clearly by the bonus dinosaur points at the end.
 
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Gavin Kinsley
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I actually like this idea of adding victory points to the track when they are scored, I wonder why it wasn't set up like this to begin with. I'm contemplating either doing this or just doing the clockwise 1st player rotation always as an option. Seems odd to me that the player that ends up winning the game is the one who just lets his patrons get eaten all game.
 
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