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Subject: Only 2 cards ... (?!) rss

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Angora Patio
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I started to play Shadowrun: Crossfire [again ...] and I just played a solo game with 2 runners: human decker and elf mage (maybe not the best combination, but ...).
I remember this game is hard, but I just wanted to check a few basics to see if I don't make it unnecessarily harder.
Can I really only draw 2 cards at the end of my turn, when my hand is depleted to 3 or less cards?
I end up with my characters having only two cards in hand facing obstacles with 6 levels (it's from the 'one bullet hole'/'easy' deck ...), dealing 2 damage ...
Did I miss a rule, like 'draw up to your starting hand size' (which would be 4 for both the elfs and the humans), or am I just having a really bad combination of [missing ...] strategy, strong obstacles and bad black market cards?
 
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Chris Gordy
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It is correct that it is not draw two cards if you have 3 or fewer cards. You can supplement this with cards you buy from the market (remember, they go directly into your hand).
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zwalex wrote:
I started to play Shadowrun: Crossfire [again ...] and I just played a solo game with 2 runners: human decker and elf mage (maybe not the best combination, but ...).
I remember this game is hard, but I just wanted to check a few basics to see if I don't make it unnecessarily harder.
Can I really only draw 2 cards at the end of my turn, when my hand is depleted to 3 or less cards?
Correct. 3 or fewer cards at end of turn allows a card draw of 2 cards

Quote:
I end up with my characters having only two cards in hand facing obstacles with 6 levels (it's from the 'one bullet hole'/'easy' deck ...), dealing 2 damage ...
What did you buy?

Quote:
Did I miss a rule, like 'draw up to your starting hand size' (which would be 4 for both the elfs and the humans), or am I just having a really bad combination of [missing ...] strategy, strong obstacles and bad black market cards?
No, no rule missed.

Kill things quickly, take their credsticks, buy more stuff and walk away victorious.
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Alexandre Santos
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Yep, also avoid the temptation of hoarding credits for big risky purchases, you'll be toasted before you can spend them.
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Kurt R
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It's better to kill one thing than wound several, so on some turns it's best to hoard your cards (unless you have 4+). Holding 3 cards on a turn (b/c you can't kill anything) then drawing 2 and buying 1+ from the market means you should be able to kill something the next turn.
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byronczimmer wrote:

Quote:
I end up with my characters having only two cards in hand facing obstacles with 6 levels (it's from the 'one bullet hole'/'easy' deck ...), dealing 2 damage ...
What did you buy?
Nothing, because I didn't had money, as I could only do less than the necessary 6 level damage to the obstacle[s].
Obstacles with 6 levels of damage, that do two damage, should not be in the 'regular/normal' obstacle deck ...
 
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Thanks everybody for your replies. I notice that I have to learn, but also think that I really had bad luck drawing strong obstacles right in the beginning.
I [re]watched some playthroughs and there it looked a lot easier. Either the reviewers rigged their obstacle decks for the playthrough, or they were really lucky drawing [relatively] week obstacles.

Another issue also seems to be that this game seems to really be geared towards 4 players, with all 4 roles and their base decks in play.

The additional Nuyen as 'compensation' for a 2 player game does not help a whole lot, as what you are really missing are the cards in the color of your secondary role - at least at the beginning. So when you draw a strong obstacle that is assigned to you because of the color of your secondary role, I think you are pretty much screwed ...
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Todd F
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FWIW I saw exactly this same phenomenon in playing Dragonfire today (the D&D re-theme of this game). I think the game is ONLY balanced for 4p; certainly 2p is untenable.
 
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Alexandre Santos
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zwalex wrote:

Obstacles with 6 levels of damage, that do two damage, should not be in the 'regular/normal' obstacle deck ...
I like it, it prevents players from having a sense of security, and is pretty thematic. In Shadowrun nothing should be taken for granted, and sometimes you get very nasty surprises.

I don't know if you're playing with the Shadowrun: Crossfire – High Caliber Ops expansion, which has a much easier starting mission (ancients something). I exclusively play 2p (with two runners), and it's pretty ok.

There's also a "client" mission which I heard is much easier, although I did not try it myself.

You might also want to try a micro fan expansion inspired by the two lands in Magic the Gathering and the Bless in Dragonfire. It also makes the game much easier at 2p, and is pretty well done.
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Sebastian Zarzycki
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glax wrote:
FWIW I saw exactly this same phenomenon in playing Dragonfire today (the D&D re-theme of this game). I think the game is ONLY balanced for 4p; certainly 2p is untenable.
It’s exactly right.
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rattkin wrote:
glax wrote:
FWIW I saw exactly this same phenomenon in playing Dragonfire today (the D&D re-theme of this game). I think the game is ONLY balanced for 4p; certainly 2p is untenable.
It’s exactly right.
I have completed 2 full campaigns of Dragonfire with 2 players.
I have played Shadowrun Crossfire to 135 karma with 2 players.
Please don't spread incorrect rumors.
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Sebastian Zarzycki
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byronczimmer wrote:

I have completed 2 full campaigns of Dragonfire with 2 players.
I have played Shadowrun Crossfire to 135 karma with 2 players.
Please don't spread incorrect rumors.
I fail to see how this should be a proof that the game is properly balanced around 2 players. Masochists are everywhere. Congrats on your achievements, I guess. Your experience is as good as mine, when it comes to stating opinions. For the record, I've played over 50 games of Shadowrun: Crossfire before finally reached my conclusion: 2p is way more swingy and luck-prone, in other words: just not fun. Yes, skill matters and it could be a difference between lost and won game. But more often than not, nothing could save you from the loss.
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rattkin wrote:
byronczimmer wrote:

I have completed 2 full campaigns of Dragonfire with 2 players.
I have played Shadowrun Crossfire to 135 karma with 2 players.
Please don't spread incorrect rumors.
I fail to see how this should be a proof that the game is properly balanced around 2 players. Masochists are everywhere. Congrats on your achievements, I guess. Your experience is as good as mine, when it comes to stating opinions. For the record, I've played over 50 games of Shadowrun: Crossfire before finally reached my conclusion above.
What's your win rate?
How much Karma did you get to?
Did you enjoy those 50 games?

 
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Sebastian Zarzycki
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Around 80, IIRC, I remember we've tried the dragon. Not all of these games were 2p, but 2p games winrate was about 1 games out of 5, so ~20%. I obviously count win as "non-abort" run. I wanted to enjoy the game, and I liked it a lot at the beginning, but after a while we just grew frustrated with the randomness of obstacle deck and gave up. We've tried some games with 2 players with 2 hands (so 4p essentially) and we instantly felt the difference. It's just that it wasn't particularly fun to play it that way.
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Rob Davis
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I had a large reply written up on Tuesday but the site crashes ate it. Sorry it took me so long to getting back around to you.
zwalex wrote:
Thanks everybody for your replies. I notice that I have to learn, but also think that I really had bad luck drawing strong obstacles right in the beginning.
It happens. Sometimes a lot. It's just the nature of the beast since you're dealing with 3 random decks, plus each player's deck. Dragonfire mitigates this a little by reducing the size of the Obstacle and Crossfire deck. It's something that could happen to Crossfire when the Prime Runners set comes out. (Soonish)

Quote:
Another issue also seems to be that this game seems to really be geared towards 4 players, with all 4 roles and their base decks in play.

The additional Nuyen as 'compensation' for a 2 player game does not help a whole lot, as what you are really missing are the cards in the color of your secondary role - at least at the beginning. So when you draw a strong obstacle that is assigned to you because of the color of your secondary role, I think you are pretty much screwed ...
You really should go out and buy High Caliber Ops since 2 players is going to be your primary mode of play. The two new classes in it are dual-color so they directly address your last point.


Also, character selection is a lot more important in 2 player games. I would suggest never playing elves or dwarves in 2 player games.*

- Dwarves don't start with enough cards in hand. Almost half of the Normal Obstacles have 3+ Gray for their first damage track, so chances are a dwarf can't do anything on it's first turn.

- Elves don't have enough HP. Nearly half of the Normal Obstacles have Attack 2, which means there's a good chance any Elf could lose half of it's HP on turn 1.

Humans and Orcs start with enough cards in hand that odds are you should be able to kill at least 1 obstacle on turn one. They also start with enough cards that you'll have a chance of drawing your secondary class color's card. No the Ork won't be able to buy any cards on his first turn, but its more important to kill stuff and prevent damage on turn 1 than to buy new cards.

Trolls don't have quite as many cards to start with, but they have enough HP that they can absorb an extra round of damage if they can't help out right away.


* If you are absolutely tied to playing a dwarf/elf (I have a friend who always has to be a dwarf**) there are stickers that will address those short-comings, but to earn them you're going to have to face those issues until you earn the Karma to buy them. That could mean losing a lot more games up front.

** And he's not even short! I don't get it.
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davro33 wrote:
Also, character selection is a lot more important in 2 player games. I would suggest never playing elves or dwarves in 2 player games.*

- Dwarves don't start with enough cards in hand. Almost half of the Normal Obstacles have 3+ Gray for their first damage track, so chances are a dwarf can't do anything on it's first turn.

- Elves don't have enough HP. Nearly half of the Normal Obstacles have Attack 2, which means there's a good chance any Elf could lose half of it's HP on turn 1.

Humans and Orcs start with enough cards in hand that odds are you should be able to kill at least 1 obstacle on turn one. They also start with enough cards that you'll have a chance of drawing your secondary class color's card. No the Ork won't be able to buy any cards on his first turn, but its more important to kill stuff and prevent damage on turn 1 than to buy new cards.

Trolls don't have quite as many cards to start with, but they have enough HP that they can absorb an extra round of damage if they can't help out right away.


* If you are absolutely tied to playing a dwarf/elf (I have a friend who always has to be a dwarf**) there are stickers that will address those short-comings, but to earn them you're going to have to face those issues until you earn the Karma to buy them. That could mean losing a lot more games up front.

** And he's not even short! I don't get it.
My favorite duo 2p has been a human Social Adept and a dwarven Drone Rigger.

Yes, the dwarf favored +card features, but it doesn't have to directly be a card. Prep-work is a wonderful way to add that third card.

Let the dwarf go second and it's fine.
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Rob Davis
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I love Prep Work for my Face. Especially if it allows me to get a Negotiation early.
 
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davro33 wrote:
...
You really should go out and buy High Caliber Ops since 2 players is going to be your primary mode of play. The two new classes in it are dual-color so they directly address your last point.



Also, character selection is a lot more important in 2 player games ...
Thanks, Rob!
High Caliber Ops is on my buy list ...

I also just got Dragonfire and will try try the solo (2 character) version there. I heard Dragonfire is a lot more 'forgiving' and read in the rules for 2 players, that you can compensate 'missing colors' of characters with the possibility to swap a starting card with the green 'Bless' card.

Thanks again!
 
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