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Subject: Set Series: The Leadership Cards rss

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Grant Rodiek
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Another day, another set series. This is set four, which means we're past the halfway point. Also, after covering several "normal" sets (and there are more normal than not), I wanted to cover one of the two more...eccentric card pools.

Leadership is inspired by how a great leader can magnify the efforts of a civilization. A great general can turn a small army into the greatest fighting force on the field, and an inspiring politician can rally their people to a cause.

The great Roman consuls were no different.

The Leadership cards are quite bad honestly with the game's primary mechanism of choosing an action and modifying it with others. You want to be careful with how many leaders you have (too many cooks can spoil the broth). But, one or two can really optimize your deck into something fierce.

Let us get into it!


The Top Row (from left to right)
We begin our post with the most difficult card to explain in the entire game, I kid you not. The card is a VERY good card, but I've never found a way to explain this relatively simple card in a way that makes perfect sense. But, let's try again.

This card has no action. But, in addition to its Leadership modifier (the laurel wreath), it has two question marks. You can use this card to follow - not modify (unless used for its laurel wreath) - any per action twice. We'll break this down.

The game has two action types. Most commonly is the per action. Such as, "gather green cubes equal to the number of swords played." Put another way, per the number of swords played.

The other action, used most commonly for improving your civilization level, means that if you play a card to follow, you only do it once. Even if you play a modifier, or a card to follow with two modifiers, you only do it once. You toggle it on, or off. You cannot enhance.

Back to this card - follow any per action twice. Let's say Foxus Aurelius plays an Agricultural card that says "Gather green cubes equal to sickles played." Beaver Antony can play this leadership card and gains two cubes...because they followed twice.

But, if Foxus played a card to increase the civilization level, which is a binary action, Beaver would have to use a different card to follow.

There are two of these cards in the deck.

The middle card continues the Leadership set's penchant towards flexibility. You can gather green OR black cubes - not both. But, you gather them using the icon of your choice! Let's say you have this card and three mallets in your hand. You probably don't want to put those mallets in your trade row. And, as you have three, it's less likely your opponents have many of them. So, you can say "We're gathering black cubes for mallets." You then get three black cubes (for three mallets) and your opponents must also follow with mallets to get black cubes.

This card is a great way to turn a deck focused on one thing into another thing.

There are two of these cards in the deck.

The far right card requires you spend a cube of your choice to play it. If you don't spend the cube, you cannot play it at all. You can then play not one, but TWO other cards from your hand. This card is also excellent if you're building a highly varied deck, or if you need to gather just one or two cubes and then build.

One thing to note, and this is one of my favorite parts of the game: every card you play can be followed. So, yes, you get bonus actions, and that seems super good (looking at you, Magic players). But! Your opponents also get to use those actions by following. It's a great thing.

The Bottom Row (from left to right)
The far left card is the best way to store cards in the game. Storing cards is very useful for a few reasons. One, it effectively leans your deck, but the card stored is still counted for VP and Monuments at the end of the game. Two, every card stored can provide its modifier to ONE of your actions each, each turn. They cannot be used to follow (so be mindful of storing an oak leaf), but they can enhance your actions.

The first action of this card lets you store one card per laurel wreath played. This can be followed. The second action provides 1VP per card currently stored. Those points will really add up if you get that engine going. This bottom action cannot be followed.

There are two of these cards in the deck.

The final action is a favorite card. It lets you use any two cards in any trade rows. You must use two different cards, as each card can only be used once. And, remember that the cards in the trade row are treated as if played from your hand. This means a.) you can modify them and b.) your opponents can follow them.

This card is very powerful, but also highly varied. It may let you use that increase civilization level card...if someone doesn't recruit it first. You may have a ton of very good options...or none! I love it, and it plays into the game's novel mechanism of recruiting cards.

If you have any questions, ask away!
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Rachel Bruner
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Okay, I've read the rules, watched both videos, read all of these posts about each card, and reread the rules. Everything is pretty clear now except "the most difficult card to explain in the entire game".

I re-read the above and I think I've got it, but I'd like to clarify just to make sure.

The rules for the "follow any per action twice" card (bear with laurel wreath and two question marks) are:

1. Its laurel wreath can be used to modify or follow an action card that requires the laurel wreath modifier.
2. When using its "follow any per action twice" ability it:
a.) can be used to follow the active player's action card regardless of the action card's modifier type (ie. you're not limited to following only leadership cards, you can follow any other card type: agriculture, science, etc),
b.) can be used to follow a per action,
c.) cannot be used to follow actions that have the binary symbol, and
d.) allows you to repeat any action a second time.

Basically the "follow any per action twice" lets you follow the action as normal the first time, then do it again a second time because of the effect of this leadership card.

And you don't use this ability as the active player but only when following?

And you don't have to play another card to match the active card's modifier?

Did I get it or am I misunderstanding any of this?

Thanks!
 
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Grant Rodiek
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lovemyfire wrote:
Okay, I've read the rules, watched both videos, read all of these posts about each card, and reread the rules. Everything is pretty clear now except "the most difficult card to explain in the entire game".

I re-read the above and I think I've got it, but I'd like to clarify just to make sure.

The rules for the "follow any per action twice" card (bear with laurel wreath and two question marks) are:

1. Its laurel wreath can be used to modify or follow an action card that requires the laurel wreath modifier.
2. When using its "follow any per action twice" ability it:
a.) can be used to follow the active player's action card regardless of the action card's modifier type (ie. you're not limited to following only leadership cards, you can follow any other card type: agriculture, science, etc),
b.) can be used to follow a per action,
c.) cannot be used to follow actions that have the binary symbol, and
d.) allows you to repeat any action a second time.

Basically the "follow any per action twice" lets you follow the action as normal the first time, then do it again a second time because of the effect of this leadership card.

And you don't use this ability as the active player but only when following?

And you don't have to play another card to match the active card's modifier?

Did I get it or am I misunderstanding any of this?

Thanks!


Hi Rachel -
I've been busy and haven't been able to address this. I'll do so now!

1. Correct.
2b. Yes. If someone plays an action for "Gather Green Cubes equal to Sickles," you could play this to get two green Cubes.
2c. Correct. If someone plays an action for expanding their civilization, this card cannot be used to follow that.
2d. Correct. Think of it as a card with two modifiers, basically, but for anything.

Only when following.
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Rachel Bruner
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HerrohGrant wrote:
Hi Rachel -
I've been busy and haven't been able to address this. I'll do so now!

1. Correct.
2b. Yes. If someone plays an action for "Gather Green Cubes equal to Sickles," you could play this to get two green Cubes.
2c. Correct. If someone plays an action for expanding their civilization, this card cannot be used to follow that.
2d. Correct. Think of it as a card with two modifiers, basically, but for anything.

Only when following.

Excellent! Thanks so much for answering my questions. I'm happy that I correctly understood how the card works. Woot!
 
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Tim Tix
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HerrohGrant wrote:
Only when following.


This is why you didn't simply use two oak leaves instead of the questionmarks, right?

I'm trying to understand the iconography as I'm about to put together my PnP.

Another question I have: The binary action symbol (which I struggle to understand... arrow up and such)... Am I correct that you basically could have left this symbol out? Because a "per action" is always distinguishable by the "x modifier" and the actions in the right box have a "can't be followed" symbol anyway?

Thanks!
 
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Grant Rodiek
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TimTix wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
Only when following.


This is why you didn't simply use two oak leaves instead of the questionmarks, right?

I'm trying to understand the iconography as I'm about to put together my PnP.

Another question I have: The binary action symbol (which I struggle to understand... arrow up and such)... Am I correct that you basically could have left this symbol out? Because a "per action" is always distinguishable by the "x modifier" and the actions in the right box have a "can't be followed" symbol anyway?

Thanks!


Tim: Correct!

Worry less about what the symbol really means. It's only called out in a few cases, and those cases are pretty consistently done (for fairly obvious reasons once you play a time or two). It isn't really a thing easily communicated in a single symbol, so we chose a symbol that looked distinct and fit on the card.

I probably could have left it out, but I think it would have been more confusing. In the rules, it's nice to say "actions with this symbol" as opposed to "actions with an absence of this case."

grant
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Tim Tix
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Thanks, Grant.
 
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Joshua Danish
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Hi Grant,

If you followed the 2nd card with the first, would you get to collect 2 or 3 cubes? The symbols suggest 3 but the explanation (follow twice) suggests twice with the laurel being ignored?

Thanks!!
 
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Grant Rodiek
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jdanish wrote:
Hi Grant,

If you followed the 2nd card with the first, would you get to collect 2 or 3 cubes? The symbols suggest 3 but the explanation (follow twice) suggests twice with the laurel being ignored?

Thanks!!


2.

Laurel = Modify (or follow once, but why do that).
? = Follow Twice, no modify
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Joshua Danish
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Thanks!
 
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Cliff Fisher
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If you're using the "play 2 trade row cards" Leadership card, can you pick cards in your own trade row? Or is it safe to assume that your trade row is always off-limits to you?

It's interesting that the 2nd leadership card (B/G per ?) requires the symbol specified by ? to follow instead of Laurels. Nice to see that clarified here as well.
 
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Grant Rodiek
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solanthos wrote:
If you're using the "play 2 trade row cards" Leadership card, can you pick cards in your own trade row? Or is it safe to assume that your trade row is always off-limits to you?

It's interesting that the 2nd leadership card (B/G per ?) requires the symbol specified by ? to follow instead of Laurels. Nice to see that clarified here as well.


Don’t assume an sxception where none is stated. The rules say you can never recruit from your trade row. They don’t say anything about card use.

The card says use two cards in trade rows. That means any.
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Thanks!
 
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Bill Simoni
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HerrohGrant wrote:
Let's say Foxus Aurelius plays an Agricultural card that says "Gather green cubes equal to sickles played." Beaver Antony can play this leadership card and gains two cubes...because they followed twice.


I'm not grokking why Anthony can use "the hardest card" to follow an agricultural card. I thought the laurel wreath needed to be on the played card before this card could be used to follow.

Q1: What am I missing in the rules?

Perhaps I am being too strict in my interpretation of the follow rule.

Q2: to follow, does your card need to match the symbol on the left middle edge of the played card or simply any of the symbols of the "per modifier" actions?`

Thanks for helping me clear this up.
 
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Grant Rodiek
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billsimoni wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
Let's say Foxus Aurelius plays an Agricultural card that says "Gather green cubes equal to sickles played." Beaver Antony can play this leadership card and gains two cubes...because they followed twice.


I'm not grokking why Anthony can use "the hardest card" to follow an agricultural card. I thought the laurel wreath needed to be on the played card before this card could be used to follow.

Q1: What am I missing in the rules?

Perhaps I am being too strict in my interpretation of the follow rule.

Q2: to follow, does your card need to match the symbol on the left middle edge of the played card or simply any of the symbols of the "per modifier" actions?`

Thanks for helping me clear this up.


Hi Bill -

Q1: Typically, yes. You must follow actions by playing a card from your hand with a modifier symbol that matches that on the played card. Typically in this example, that is the agricultural sickle.

however, the entire value of this card is that it lets you follow anything (that is non-binary of course) twice. It's a wild double follow. Those question marks basically indicate: use these question marks as any symbols - sickles in this case - to follow a per action twice.

This card is an exception (hurray, card games!) and that is its value. I hope that is now clear!

Q2: To follow an action, the card you play from your hand to follow must match one of three conditions:

1. Most Common: The symbol on the left side of the card must match the symbol indicated on the played action. If the action says "Gather black cubes equal to spears," you must play a card showing a spear.

2. Second Most Common: The symbol on the left side of the card must be an Oak Leaf. This acts as a wild to modify OR follow.

3. Least Common: The two cards (one unique, with two copies) covered in Q1. You can use the question marks as a wild follow, twice.

grant
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Bill Simoni
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Thanks, Grant. Now I have to tell my son he was right - so grating!

Following is easy (re: Q2); I started overthinking it.
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billsimoni wrote:
Thanks, Grant. Now I have to tell my son he was right - so grating!

Following is easy (re: Q2); I started overthinking it.


Generally while my games have a lot of options, I try to make each one individually simple and compact.
 
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Quote:
The middle card continues the Leadership set's penchant towards flexibility. You can gather green OR black cubes - not both. But, you gather them using the icon of your choice! Let's say you have this card and three mallets in your hand. You probably don't want to put those mallets in your trade row. And, as you have three, it's less likely your opponents have many of them. So, you can say "We're gathering black cubes for mallets." You then get three black cubes (for three mallets) and your opponents must also follow with mallets to get black cubes.

For this card, say I want to modify the card ability with mallets, so I tuck a mallet card underneath. Could I also tuck a card with a laurel wreath on it, since that's the actual symbol on the edge of the card, in order to keep it out of my trade row? Or are the edge symbols only considered as Follow/Modify symbols, and don't necessarily reflect the suit required to Follow/Modify during the Action phase? And it just so happens that in most cases the edge symbol matches the action symbols on the cards, excepting the Leadership cards?

I think this suit is the one I'm finding most unintuitive, so I'm having the hardest time parsing it's iconography.
 
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Grant Rodiek
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constancy wrote:
Quote:
The middle card continues the Leadership set's penchant towards flexibility. You can gather green OR black cubes - not both. But, you gather them using the icon of your choice! Let's say you have this card and three mallets in your hand. You probably don't want to put those mallets in your trade row. And, as you have three, it's less likely your opponents have many of them. So, you can say "We're gathering black cubes for mallets." You then get three black cubes (for three mallets) and your opponents must also follow with mallets to get black cubes.

For this card, say I want to modify the card ability with mallets, so I tuck a mallet card underneath. Could I also tuck a card with a laurel wreath on it, since that's the actual symbol on the edge of the card, in order to keep it out of my trade row? Or are the edge symbols only considered as Follow/Modify symbols, and don't necessarily reflect the suit required to Follow/Modify during the Action phase? And it just so happens that in most cases the edge symbol matches the action symbols on the cards, excepting the Leadership cards?

I think this suit is the one I'm finding most unintuitive, so I'm having the hardest time parsing it's iconography.


Every single leadership card is a wild exception and the iconography was a big challenge.

If this game were to be signed, I would just replace these cards to make it easier for a larger audience.

I would say though to keep them simple. Here you’re combining a few pieces to make the card harder. They really are simple, they’re just so different.

No, you can’t tuck the Laurel. If you declare mallets, that is what you can use. You’re using the ACTION, not also combining its modifier. In fact if you use mallets, the default laurel modifier on the action card does nothing.

Now, if you said Laurels, then yes you can tuck them and yes you can use the card’s default laurel on it.
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Quote:
You’re using the ACTION, not also combining its modifier.

During my 1st play, I think my issue was that I was considering the edge/modifier symbols as the required symbol for any follow/modify activity, rather than looking at the actual ACTION on the card to direct me to the appropriate modifier. That was ok for most of the cards, but those danged bears were throwing me for a loop. I think I'm good to go now.

Now that I have a better understanding, I'm thinking these cards are pretty cool. I really think maybe a card deconstruction in the rules might be a nice fix, rather than the possibility of pulling the Leaders out of the deck. If I fixated on the wrong part of the card, maybe other people would too. Thanks Grant!
 
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constancy wrote:
Quote:
You’re using the ACTION, not also combining its modifier.

During my 1st play, I think my issue was that I was considering the edge/modifier symbols as the required symbol for any follow/modify activity, rather than looking at the actual ACTION on the card to direct me to the appropriate modifier. That was ok for most of the cards, but those danged bears were throwing me for a loop. I think I'm good to go now.

Now that I have a better understanding, I'm thinking these cards are pretty cool. I really think maybe a card deconstruction in the rules might be a nice fix, rather than the possibility of pulling the Leaders out of the deck. If I fixated on the wrong part of the card, maybe other people would too. Thanks Grant!


The last two pages of the rules cover ever card.

If I license this to a publisher they’ll want to move a lot more copies. My games have a steep learning curve that is acceptable to some but not most people. There are a handful of things I’ll do to streamline the game to be more broadly accessible. It’ll still be good, just easier.
 
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Quote:
The last two pages of the rules cover every card.

I get that, but the explanations are really succinct. I came to these forums directly after playing to understand what I misunderstood from playing only after a rules read. These card set descriptions are very helpful. I'll just say that an anatomy of a card example might have helped with my basic confusion about these Bears, that seem to be the outliers in the game. Again, I thank you for the help.
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constancy wrote:
Quote:
The last two pages of the rules cover every card.

I get that, but the explanations are really succinct. I came to these forums directly after playing to understand what I misunderstood from playing only after a rules read. These card set descriptions are very helpful. I'll just say that an anatomy of a card example might have helped with my basic confusion about these Bears, that seem to be the outliers in the game. Again, I thank you for the help.


Sure. With my games I'm pretty limited in budget and components. I could have added 1-2 more pages of notes...but that has cost implications and makes it tough. While I know the rules should have everything - and for many players they do - for many they don't, which is why I try to provide so much support here with Q&A, blogs, videos, etc.

Thanks for your patience.
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HerrohGrant wrote:
The final action is a favorite card. It lets you use any two cards in any trade rows. You must use two different cards, as each card can only be used once. And, remember that the cards in the trade row are treated as if played from your hand. This means a.) you can modify them and b.) your opponents can follow them.

If I modify this card with one other, does that allow me to repeat the use of one of the trade row cards? Is modification considered ANOTHER action or in this case is it essentially allowing me to use 4 different trade row cards rather than 2 trade row cards twice?
 
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constancy wrote:
HerrohGrant wrote:
The final action is a favorite card. It lets you use any two cards in any trade rows. You must use two different cards, as each card can only be used once. And, remember that the cards in the trade row are treated as if played from your hand. This means a.) you can modify them and b.) your opponents can follow them.

If I modify this card with one other, does that allow me to repeat the use of one of the trade row cards? Is modification considered ANOTHER action or in this case is it essentially allowing me to use 4 different trade row cards rather than 2 trade row cards twice?


The card does not say use two trade row cards per Laurel. It says use two trade row cards.

In all cases, never assume a modification is possible unless it explicitly says per modifier, or in the game’s explicit case, “x <icon>”

 
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