Recommend
1 
 Thumb up
 Hide
17 Posts

Rising Sun» Forums » General

Subject: Need help with bonsai rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
j s
United States
washington
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
What are your strategy tips for doing well with bonsai clan?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Felipe Bulhões
Brazil
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
Is the god of shopping on the board?

Try to draft the temple dog(Komainu?) as fast as possible and take four different virtues during the game. Double respect and righteousness are also great, but not mandatory(also rare). Take way of bushido early at summer if someone is also hoarding virtues. Your points will come from cards, specially from way of the bushido and form of the phoenix.

No shopping?

The strategy becomes way more dependent on the sets available. In general, you will favor marshal mandates over anything else. Try to get an ally on the first season, but you will mostly prefer to fly solo on summer(usually it will be your double mandate pick season). Just don't try to do a bit of everything. Your points will come mostly from sets of cards, poets or seppuku. If you manage to win wars, awesome, but you will have difficulty get more than four provinces. Hostages are also important on spring and autumn. They help you improve your awful season income.

In my most advanced table, Bonsai is Tier S+ currently.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jason
Canada
flag msg tools
mb
If they're S Tier in 3-4 player games.
They are definitely F Tier in 5+ player games

Shopping for seasonal cards and marshals for strongholds is obviously the best for Bonsai but they have to jockey for mandate position. In 5+ player games, they literally have to beg to at least get partnered with either of the top 3 mandate pickers at the start of the season.

I'm pretty sure veteran players would avoid giving Bonsai any of such mandates let alone pair with Bonsai for this reason.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kaganishu Khan
Germany
flag msg tools
mbmb
dsphere wrote:
If they're S Tier in 3-4 player games.
They are definitely F Tier in 5+ player games

Shopping for seasonal cards and marshals for strongholds is obviously the best for Bonsai but they have to jockey for mandate position. In 5+ player games, they literally have to beg to at least get partnered with either of the top 3 mandate pickers at the start of the season.

I'm pretty sure veteran players would avoid giving Bonsai any of such mandates let alone pair with Bonsai for this reason.


4 and 5 player games are virtually the same in balance/mechanics. 3 and 6 are the outliers that work differently. You are right though, ANY S-tier clan can be brought under control by the diplomatic aspect of the game. However, since everyone at an experienced table is a viable candidate to win, in my experience its about spreading your counterplay around. Its not help to me to block Bonsai, only to have Dragonfly win - and I am Lotus
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mr. Octavius
Canada
Chilliwack
BC
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
dsphere wrote:
If they're S Tier in 3-4 player games.
They are definitely F Tier in 5+ player games

Shopping for seasonal cards and marshals for strongholds is obviously the best for Bonsai but they have to jockey for mandate position. In 5+ player games, they literally have to beg to at least get partnered with either of the top 3 mandate pickers at the start of the season.

I'm pretty sure veteran players would avoid giving Bonsai any of such mandates let alone pair with Bonsai for this reason.


Please try to stay on topic. This thread is for advice on Bonsai strategy, not for complaining (yet again) about how your group is bad at playing Bonsai. I'd appreciate it if you could keep that to one thread instead of dragging that into every thread.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MaxFool
United States
Dallas
Texas
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Maebon wrote:
dsphere wrote:
If they're S Tier in 3-4 player games.
They are definitely F Tier in 5+ player games

Shopping for seasonal cards and marshals for strongholds is obviously the best for Bonsai but they have to jockey for mandate position. In 5+ player games, they literally have to beg to at least get partnered with either of the top 3 mandate pickers at the start of the season.

I'm pretty sure veteran players would avoid giving Bonsai any of such mandates let alone pair with Bonsai for this reason.


Please try to stay on topic. This thread is for advice on Bonsai strategy, not for complaining (yet again) about how your group is bad at playing Bonsai. I'd appreciate it if you could keep that to one thread instead of dragging that into every thread.


I don't think you provided any contribution to this thread either. Complaining about a complaint? Dsphere at least provided 1 viable strategy with his.
dsphere wrote:

Shopping for seasonal cards and marshals for strongholds is obviously the best for Bonsai but they have to jockey for mandate position.


Go figure..shake

But all things aside this "crappy" strategy may work for you. It is more based on the Sun clan but can be used with Bonsai. I have not used it myself but I hope to in the near future.

https://youtu.be/YpEf3LvPIFk

If you do use please provide an update. I'd love to hear how it goes.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
J Kaemmer
United States
Iowa City
Iowa
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
ValentineS wrote:
What are your strategy tips for doing well with bonsai clan?


Fighting a lot in the first season is a no-no. you probably shouldn't bank on getting a big WPT set-bonus either. The incredibly low seasonal income and low honor are a big problem for bonsai to overcome militarily. You will start real slow, but ramp up real fast.

The shopping spree technique works well enough, but keep in mind you are still limited by income. 4 coins means you can buy 4 "things" a season tops. That's season cards AND strongholds. So you'll probably have to make do with some free cards or skip a Marshall mandate or two. Personally, I'd rather take more cards than strongholds.

So how do you fix this low income issue? Get money obviously. Take some bribes, whore out your mandate choice to the highest bidder. Buy some season cards like Path of the Monkey, Way of the Salamander, or what have you. Hostage some Bushi/Monsters. Lastly, look for Harvests, they're more important to Bonsai than you'd think. P.S. Shikoku, next door to your starting province, gives 3 coins and that's not a coincidence.

Plan on taking a dive for the first battle or two each season in order to get the cash to win some of the later fights.

DO NOT go heavy Oni, it's a trap. There's not enough points there, especially since you ARE NOT going to do well at fighting, regardless of the big monsters.

Ideally you'd be flush with Virtues and get both Form of the Phoenix winter upgrades.

If Ryujin is not a Kami in your game (good luck!), your second pick is Susanoo. Buy all 4 Strongholds ASAP and watch the points roll in, 9 Kami phases, with even an average of 3 Strongholds throughout the game that's 27 VP. Pick up the Winter tile for strongholds? have another 12VP. Want both Winter Cards? Easy for Bonsai. We're talking a 40-50 VP by the end of the game for spending 4-5 coins max. Susanoo is much better than he looks.

Overall, your biggest advantage is being able to acquire multiple Winter Upgrades despite their high costs. Pick one to go hard on from the very first Season. Bonsai actually gets 2 mandate picks in Autumn in all player counts except 6 (again, probably not a coincidence). You'll have good leverage for alliances and one of the first Mandate Picks, so you can basically guarantee at least one Winter Season Card.

3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Charlie Theel
United States
St. Louis
Missouri
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I wouldn't be afraid to pay a coin to the first or second player and make a deal in order to secure increased mandate effectiveness.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Doe
United States
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I was Bonzai in a 3-player game (Turtle and Dragonfly were the others). i got lucky that the god of shopping was on the board, and proceeded to abuse him as much as possible. I was able to acquire some war upgrades that was granting me 11 coins and 4 ronin at start of war phase by Autumn. kami unbound was in play, and i had taken a few different provinces in Summer so my 'god' was strong. Add in the Daimyo upgrade and i was ready to pounce in Autumn.

I went from having 1 point going into Autumn, and finished the game with 75 after bonuses kicked in. Still lost however because we let Turtle run away with the deity that gives the favor per strongholds.

All in all it was a good game. I was able to play Train at least once a season, and 'bribed' my ally one time into the same. I focused more on 'monsters' and Shinto and less on Bushi, and it seemed to work out well for me. i would have done a few things differently, but i enjoyed playing as Bonzai.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mr. Octavius
Canada
Chilliwack
BC
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
maxfool wrote:
I don't think you provided any contribution to this thread either. Complaining about a complaint? Dsphere at least provided 1 viable strategy with his.


But now you're complaining about my complaint about his complaining? It's Complainception!

I suppose I could have thrown something obvious into my post like "Bonsai should make sure they are buying something every time a train mandate is played, so make sure you a coin available at all times" in order to technically 'contribute to the thread,' but for all practical purposes it contributes nothing and just wastes people's time.

The thing is my group is also bad at playing Bonsai, that is why I'm interested in the actual topic of the thread. As such, I don't think it would be appropriate for me to provide any strategies for a clan that my groups hasn't figured out yet. Even something that seems obvious, like starting with low honor and cheap training makes buying Onis a given, could turn out to be wrong...

iswearihaveajob wrote:
DO NOT go heavy Oni, it's a trap. There's not enough points there, especially since you ARE NOT going to do well at fighting, regardless of the big monsters.


This is surprising to me, but I can see the logic to it. I'll have to keep in mind next time we play that maybe the route to Bonsai victory has nothing to do with WPTs, and they should be focusing on anything else that gives points. Not going Oni also opens up the possibility of Seppuku for points and higher ranking on the honor track for tie breaks.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Felipe Bulhões
Brazil
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
Going all out on ONI could be a noob trap unless you manage to have enough coins to win battles on the first season. It's hard and very situational.

This game is not Blood Rage. In Blood Rage, the only the 3rd Era really matters. On Rising Sun, if you don't do well on the two first seasons, you are out of the game. Rising Sun is extremely punishing.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jason
Canada
flag msg tools
mb
Buying oni’s and expensive season plays to the strength of the clan’s ability.
Sadly, the mediocre income forces the need for a good harvest or coin engine to have a fighting chance during war.

So it’s a hard crossroad to balance i find to truely gamble go all in on oni route
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
arah
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Given your limited resources and honor you should focus on strongholds and cards.

Kami: Buy a card and VP/stronghold are good for you, so focus on them if they are there.

Mandates: You should play and bribe for your ally to Marshal or for anyone to Train.

War: You should have big, expensive monsters and some figures. Oni are good for you. You should have few coins and ronin on the early seasons, so just try to be a massive force in one province or spread to empty ones so that others can't outbid their victory easily. Later you can have enough resources to outbid your opponents and fight in multiple provinces. You should have more strongholds and more figure advantage so you can try to spread and seppuku to get a lot of VP and compensation to fight for the provinces you want.

Season Cards: You can try combos that are costly, since everyone else will be less likely to snag them.

Diplomacy: You want 2 Train mandates to be played every season or get the kami that allows you to buy more cards. You want other people to let you or your ally to have and play Marshal. You are not a big threat early, so make deals to secure the few provinces you can have force in. Late game you can be powerful because your strongholds produce a lot of units, and if you have enough cards bought.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alex Krasny
msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The whole "get ryujin and shop till you drop" is a great strategy but it requires players which will do exactly what you want and everything to go your way. On top of the primary problem: Ryujin is SUPER STRONG and every clan wants to own it and abuse it.

Other than that here is what you need:
1. You need to get an early ally who will help you marshal
2. You need to recruit so you can place 2 shintos on ryujin
3. You need to train before anyone else trains to get Komianu (this is a great setup in a 3-player game, as you will probably be 3rd to mandate which is perfect. But in any other player game someone might train before you because Komianu on Ryujin is very obvious and hugely beneficial)

Now you have spent 50% of your coins and spent 2 entire mandates specifically to lock up Ryjun. Hopefully this happened before the first Kami phase because it's possible someone else like Koi or Sun has also recruited to that Kami before you got to train and you lost 1 round of it already.

Great!

But look how many ways this falls apart? How do you do well with Bonsai without Ryujin? We have not found a way yet.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Felipe Bulhões
Brazil
flag msg tools
Avatar
mb
People also did well by focusing on Marshal + Susanoo + Stronghold winter upgrades. You should have a stronghold advantage and this usually translate to kami or board advantage. If almost everyone is getting 2+ strongholds, than our meta isn't really comparable. All our play throughs were four+ players so far.

They usually do well by exploiting point engines, not WPT. Your focus on the war phase should just be hostage taking and seppuku. And you will almost never will want an ally if you have a double mandate summer.

Ryujin is good for everyone, but cards are usually expensive,so people are often reluctant to hold for more than one Kami turn.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ernie Barrett
United States
Warren
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Played as Bonsai in a 3 player game Sunday.I stocked up on Oni, especially the ones more powerful if lowest honor. Also ended up with the one that gives victory points for each Oni you have if he wins a war province token. I was getting victory points for my strongholds from the Kami phase. Then I managed to grab both cards that give end game victory points per Oni you have. I won with 104 points.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Matt Hausig
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Recently had a 5 player game where I played as Bonsai. Kami unbound but no train kami in play.

Marshal was huge as I picked up Form of the Kannushi which let me move a shinto during the marshal phase and mitigated against being low honor in the shrine battles (it also led to an opportunity on the last mandate of the game (a marhsal) to stage a bidding war over which player would get to keep their kami into war phase. Kotahi was also useful. I didn't have the opportunity but considered taking the daimyo upgrade route. Autumn, I snagged both stronghold upgrades which pretty much sealed the game.

War phase had to be played conservatively, going tall after one province in Summer and Autumn and using the ronin god by itself in a late battle after sacrificing bushi in early battles to build up the coins needed to win the ronin bidding.

Overall, the variability of the train cards and player order will have a big effect on what strategy works for Bonsai but that flexibility and ability to shift strategies is also what makes Bonsai effective.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.