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Subject: Train purchases and solo variant train purchases rss

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Jimmy Okolica
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Lots of questions...

1. Starting a company:
A. Rules say at the beginning of the game, every company starts with (at least) one train. Do the companies pay for the train out of their initial cash or is it free? We played the trains were free.
B. When a company starts later in the game, do they immediately buy/get a train from the train pool? If so, do they get it for free or half price? We played they get one of their choice immediately but half to pay half-price for it from their treasury.

2. Buying a train during “Run Trains”:
A. If a company is without a train (and thus aren’t withholding), can they buy a train from the train pool? We played they can.
B. Can the president contribute cash for a trainless company? We played he/she can.

3. Creating a forced train buy:
A. Can a president voluntarily scrap obsolete trains to create a forced train buy? We played he/she can.

4. Solo game:
A. Are there two 2-trains total or 2+2 (like in the multiplayer game). If the company that starts with an extra 2-train starts, does he get his extra 2-train?
B. Since there are no trains in the train pool, does a new company then have to wait and buy a train from the bank for full price by taking an action card as one of the player’s two actions?


As an experienced 18XXer, it’s definitely different. My biggest concern is I’m not sure who I can play it with. I’m not sure that 18XXers that don’t play euros will play it and I’m not sure that euro gamers will enjoy it. It seems like it fits into the economic game players (Winsomes, The Estates, Arkwright, City of Big Shoulders, etc.). Anybody had problems getting non-euro 18XXers to play it more than once?
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Roel van der Hoorn
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1A: Free.
1B: They can buy one immediately from the pool for full price (last line in the white box in the rules). Why do you think half price?

2A: It’s a little unclear, but I would say that you can.
2B: Yes. And this is the only time a president can add their own cash to buy a train.

3A: Yes.

(The Estates is more or less an auction game, not so much an economic game, imo)
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Jimmy Okolica
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Thanks for the responses! I have no idea why I thought obsolete trains were half price.

Any idea on the solo play questions?
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Mark Morrise
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Butterfly0038 wrote:
4. Solo game:
A. Are there two 2-trains total or 2+2 (like in the multiplayer game). If the company that starts with an extra 2-train starts, does he get his extra 2-train?

My understanding is that you start with one #2 train, for free. If you or Gulliver start with Lilliput National Railway, then you or Gulliver start with two #2 trains. There are two #2 trains in the train deck.
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Mike White
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So re 2A are we saying a company with no trains, which therefore has zero revenue and further this is the only way to have zero revenue:

-cannot Pay Dividends
-so by default is Withholding
-its share price reduces
-and it MAY buy from the train pool
-the president of the company can top up the company treasury where the treasury has insufficient funds (edit) in respect of this purchase?

And another clarification on the above, the President can top up in similar fashion as part of a standard buy trains action when buying a new train.
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Matthew Berard
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Butterfly0038 wrote:

3. Creating a forced train buy:
A. Can a president voluntarily scrap obsolete trains to create a forced train buy? We played he/she can.


Being a complete newb, could someone elaborate a bit more on this? Companies aren't required to own trains in this game so I'm not sure how one would force a train buy...
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Jimmy Okolica
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Slim Chalkey wrote:
So re 2A are we saying a company with no trains, which therefore has zero revenue and further this is the only way to have zero revenue:

-cannot Pay Dividends
-so by default is Withholding
-its share price reduces
-and it MAY buy from the train pool
-the president of the company can top up the company treasury where the treasury has insufficient funds (edit) in respect of this purchase?


Yes

Quote:

And another clarification on the above, the President can top up in similar fashion as part of a standard buy trains action when buying a new train.

Only if his company doesn't have a train (i.e., it's a "forced train" buy).
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Jimmy Okolica
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Eraelan wrote:
Butterfly0038 wrote:

3. Creating a forced train buy:
A. Can a president voluntarily scrap obsolete trains to create a forced train buy? We played he/she can.


Being a complete newb, could someone elaborate a bit more on this? Companies aren't required to own trains in this game so I'm not sure how one would force a train buy...


"Forced train buy" is a term from other 18XX games. In most other 18XX games, a company is required to own a train and the end of its turn and if it doesn't have enough money to buy one, the president must contribute his own cash (and sell shares if necessary to have enough cash).

In 18Lilliput, there is no concept of "forced train buy". However, the rules say that if a company doesn't have a train and the president takes the buy train(s) action, he can contribute his own funds.

What is less clear is if the company doesn't have a train during the "run trains" step and he has no dividends to play. I interpret that as "holding dividends" which means that he can buy a train from the train pool. I also interpret that when the rules say he can "buy a train", they are including the fact that if the company doesn't have sufficient cash and no train that the president can contribute his own cash.
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Ken Bush
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Butterfly0038 wrote:
What is less clear is if the company doesn't have a train during the "run trains" step and he has no dividends to play. I interpret that as "holding dividends" which means that he can buy a train from the train pool.

The way I read the rule is that the chairman must choose not to distribute dividends in order for the price to go down or buy trains. If there are no dividends then there is no choice so price stays the same and no train buy. I must admit i’m Not near the rules now so only working out of memory.
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Jimmy Okolica
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klbush wrote:
Butterfly0038 wrote:
What is less clear is if the company doesn't have a train during the "run trains" step and he has no dividends to play. I interpret that as "holding dividends" which means that he can buy a train from the train pool.

The way I read the rule is that the chairman must choose not to distribute dividends in order for the price to go down or buy trains. If there are no dividends then there is no choice so price stays the same and no train buy. I must admit i’m Not near the rules now so only working out of memory.


Myeh. I agree it's interpretation. I'd argue I'm choosing to hold my $0 dividends and thus the price goes down and I can buy a train. It doesn't say that the dividends have to be above $0 to hold them. But, I completely agree it's open to interpretation.
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Mike White
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The rules do read as:

"If the company does not pay out a dividend the share price falls..” etc

It’s pretty clear that it’s an either/or situation. And I think pretty clear that if you pay nothing you therefor follow the withholding process.
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Paul Cockburn
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Rules, page 7 (near the bottom): "A company is not required to own a train. If a company doesn't own a train and wants to purchase one and doesn't have enough money to buy one, the director of the company may make up the deficit from his private assets. After the purchase the company has £0 of treasury."

I think it is clear that the only time a player may contribute to any company expenditure is when the company has no train and it wants to purchase one. If a company has only obsolete trains it may first discard them to become a company without trains.

This thread has me wondering about the timing of such a purchase. Presumably this can only happen either when taking the 'purchase train' action (buying from stock or from another company) or when withholding dividends (buying from the train pool). (It can't happen when starting a new company - which will always begin with at least £450 and will always be able to afford a train from the train pool. Trains costing over £400 will never appear in the train pool.)

With only obsolete trains in a company, is it legal to run those trains, generate income, withhold dividends, then discard the obsolete trains and buy a new train with help from the director's private assets?
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Mike White
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I would think that's allowed due to the "any time" timing in discarding obsolete trains.

I was wondering about the situations when the chairman can add funds, specifically whether it's permitted under Founding, and Withholding. I have no reason to doubt you are right in that it's a moot point for founding, but I'm still not clear whether you can do this as part of Withholding.

I'm inclined to think Yes. My reasoning being that there do seem to be rules in this ruleset that are under specific headings that also apply elsewhere. This I suspect is another example.

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Roel van der Hoorn
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mathmethman wrote:
Trains costing over £400 will never appear in the train pool.

Maybe not in solo variant maybe, but in the "normal" game a 3D and/or 4D can (and will) appear in the train pool.
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Roel van der Hoorn
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mathmethman wrote:
With only obsolete trains in a company, is it legal to run those trains, generate income, withhold dividends, then discard the obsolete trains and buy a new train with help from the director's private assets?

Yes.
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Jimmy Okolica
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RvdH83 wrote:
mathmethman wrote:
Trains costing over £400 will never appear in the train pool.

Maybe not in solo variant maybe, but in the "normal" game a 3D and/or 4D can (and will) appear in the train pool.


Actually, in the solo variant, trains never appear in the train pool unless a player puts one there.
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Paul Cockburn
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RvdH83 wrote:
mathmethman wrote:
Trains costing over £400 will never appear in the train pool.

Maybe not in solo variant maybe, but in the "normal" game a 3D and/or 4D can (and will) appear in the train pool.

You are right.

I was thinking of the solo game where the only time a train enters the train pool is if it obsolete. Or, come to think of it, if Gulliver doesn't have room for a new train in either of his companies and therefore has to discard the oldest. So (now I think about it) I was wrong even about the solo game.

In which case it is conceivable that on starting a new company, it may need a contribution from its owner's private assets in order to buy the train it wants.

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Mark Morrise
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mathmethman wrote:
if Gulliver doesn't have room for a new train in either of his companies and therefore has to discard the oldest.

When Gulliver discards a train, it does not go to the train pool. “If Gulliver’s company is at its train limit, the train card with the lowest number is rusted (out of the game) to create space for the new train.” The following sentence of the rules says this likewise applies if Gulliver has too many trains due to a phase change. (Page 15, bottom two bullet points.)
 
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Paul Cockburn
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markmorrise wrote:
When Gulliver discards a train, it does not go to the train pool.

Quite right. I'd forgotten that.

So assuming I haven't overlooked any other rules, I was partly right when I said that trains of value over £400 never appear in the train pool. This is indeed true for the solo game.
 
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