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Subject: 1 action vs 2 action variant rss

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Z D
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Has anyone considered not allowing a second action each turn within a generation? Obviously one could still take as many turns as they want/can before passing in that generation but wondering if this helps speed things up (particularly for those with AP) without losing too much.

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).

Thoughts?
 
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It would change the game significantly in some areas, i.e. when you raise the temperature or oxygen levels two steps in a row to get a bonus, or similary you need to a first action to be able to the resources or prerequisites for the second action which you are beating another player to or want to do before another player has their turn.
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What if I've got enough resources to raise a global parameter twice and receive the bonus... Would I only be allowed one action and give that bonus to someone else?

I don't like the idea of being limited to one action.
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Derry Salewski
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You just have to teach people to get in the right mindset, not change the rules.
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Jiroooo
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When we play, if you dont declare that you want to do a second action then its assumed youre only doing one. And if you do want to do a second action, better do it immediately or within a reasonable (30 sec) time.
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I listened to a podcast (but I can’t remember which) where a play tester said they implemented the two action rule because otherwise the second player could only, at best, match the first player.
 
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It seems to me that this would make the situation even worse. If a player has AP every turn, now he's going to have twice as many turns to do the same number of actions.
 
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Désirée Greverud
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Chigatterun wrote:
When we play, if you dont declare that you want to do a second action then its assumed youre only doing one. And if you do want to do a second action, better do it immediately or within a reasonable (30 sec) time.
this is how we sped things up for my family. Do your first action and if you have one immediately, do your second; otherwise next player. This way you can still do 2 if you are going for a bonus or want to make sure you claim that milestone you just achieved but if you are just going to spend 5 minutes picking a card to play, you can think about that while everyone else goes.
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Pedro Estêvão
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zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
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Rikard Johansson
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This has change little bit with Colonies, since grabbing those trades is a bit like worker-placement. But it used to be, and still is in general, much better to save your actions as long as you can.

As a general rule of thumb, never do 2 actions in a row unless there's a clear benefit to it, or a great risk of waiting.

Just teach your friends this and it should be fine.


In my group we always start a turn by saying "I'm doing 2 actions this turn", and if we don't, we're implicitly saying we're doing only 1 thing.
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Peter Bakija
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zdsb wrote:
Has anyone considered not allowing a second action each turn within a generation? Obviously one could still take as many turns as they want/can before passing in that generation but wondering if this helps speed things up (particularly for those with AP) without losing too much.
It would make certain parts of the game a lot harder to take advantage of successfully (building greenery, getting milestones) and certain parts of the game more effective than originally designed (asteroids burning plants: see above).

The way to fix the "I took one action, and now I'm staring blankly at the board, trying to figure out what my next one is, and the whole game state is constantly a surprise to me" issue is to encourage people to only take two actions if it is actually important. And if they have taken one action, and they don't know immediately that they need to take a second action (which will generally be obvious to everyone at the table; they suddenly have 8 plants! They suddenly have 3 cities and no one is Mayor yet!), they should pass their turn and figure out their next action when it isn't their turn.

Only occasionally is it important to take 2 actions in a particular turn. But when it is important, it is important (you want that greenery before your plants explode or you want that milestone before it gets yoinked, or you want that second temperature step to get the heat production bonus, or whatever). So you don't want to remove the option of 2 actions. You want to convince the people you play with to, ya know, play smarter and faster.
 
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michael ray
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PSantos wrote:
zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
It would speed it up for our group for sure. Players can use the other players turns to map out what their second action would have been, to use as their 1st action next time around. Allowing them to AP while others are playing, instead of while we're all waiting on them.

I saw a variant a while back where they gave people 5-10 seconds after their first action and if they weren't actively doing their second action at that point it was a pass. I would consider something like that before dropping to just 1 action.
 
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squegeeboo wrote:
PSantos wrote:
zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
It would speed it up for our group for sure. Players can use the other players turns to map out what their second action would have been, to use as their 1st action next time around. Allowing them to AP while others are playing, instead of while we're all waiting on them.

All of which they can already do with the written rules simply by declining a second action if they don't know immediately what it will be.
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michael ray
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DaveD wrote:
squegeeboo wrote:
PSantos wrote:
zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
It would speed it up for our group for sure. Players can use the other players turns to map out what their second action would have been, to use as their 1st action next time around. Allowing them to AP while others are playing, instead of while we're all waiting on them.

All of which they can already do with the written rules simply by declining a second action if they don't know immediately what it will be.
Yes, they 'can', this would force them to. Nothing like watching an AP person stare at the board for 2 minutes and then decide not to do a second action. And then watch them do it the next turn, and then the next turn, and then the next turn.
 
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H-B-G
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squegeeboo wrote:
DaveD wrote:
squegeeboo wrote:
PSantos wrote:
zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
It would speed it up for our group for sure. Players can use the other players turns to map out what their second action would have been, to use as their 1st action next time around. Allowing them to AP while others are playing, instead of while we're all waiting on them.

All of which they can already do with the written rules simply by declining a second action if they don't know immediately what it will be.
Yes, they 'can', this would force them to. Nothing like watching an AP person stare at the board for 2 minutes and then decide not to do a second action. And then watch them do it the next turn, and then the next turn, and then the next turn.
Don't change the game when the problem is with the players.
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michael ray
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DaveD wrote:
squegeeboo wrote:
DaveD wrote:
squegeeboo wrote:
PSantos wrote:
zdsb wrote:

I ask because I've noticed people often have a really good idea of what they want to do with their first action, but then sit there thinking about what they might possibly do with the second (for fear that not taking the action will be a bad play).
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

It is only when you have something in mind that requires 2 steps - usually the first being the fulfillment of a prerquisite for the second (say, getting a tile on the board to claim a milestone or placing two tiles in a row to deny an opportunity to your opponent) - that it will make sense to use your two actions.

But, if that is the case, then you will already have thought of the 2-actions as a single move. That is to say, if you are hesitant/don't have a clue about your second action, it is unlikely that it will make any difference if you take it now or in your next turn.

So, in short, I don't think it would speed the game. It would likely slow it down more.


* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
It would speed it up for our group for sure. Players can use the other players turns to map out what their second action would have been, to use as their 1st action next time around. Allowing them to AP while others are playing, instead of while we're all waiting on them.

All of which they can already do with the written rules simply by declining a second action if they don't know immediately what it will be.
Yes, they 'can', this would force them to. Nothing like watching an AP person stare at the board for 2 minutes and then decide not to do a second action. And then watch them do it the next turn, and then the next turn, and then the next turn.
Don't change the game when the problem is with the players.
It's a variants thread, specific to AP and 2 actions per turn and how to help resolve it. Having an actual issue with the suggestion is one thing, saying "Don't change the game" contributes nothing.
 
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Jiroooo
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I can see this variant stalling the game. Players just building their engine because they dont want to raise temp or oxygen one step so the next player gets the bonus. This could result in a longer game.
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Z D
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Thanks all for everyones feedback and thoughts. This is one my first posts since I love the game and want to do whatever I can to prevent my gaming group from getting turned off from it, thereby limiting how much I can get it to the table. I hadn't considered how big an impact it could be with moving global parameters or claiming milestones, and agree, it would change the game.

1 common thought below is to encourage players that a 1 action turn is often better than a 2 action turn (because it extends how "deep" you will have turns in that generation), unless you are specifically trying to achieve something (a combo move that allows you to grab a bonus on global parameters, claim a milestone, place a greenery, etc). I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around how to best explain that...

If I play devil's advocate, I might argue that if there's fundamentally 6 things I want to do, getting them done in 3 turns vs 6 turns 'seems' better. Of course the game state changes each turn, thereby potentially giving you more options that might open up...but that's harder conceptually to grasp, I feel, especially for players new to the game. It's understandable for people to feel like they need to 'maximize' their turn (i.e. take two actions), rather than plan to maximize that generation (maybe this speaks to the nature of people as poorer long term planners?!).

In the end, I'll probably just emphasize that 1 actio is often a better strategy than 2 actions, unless trying to achieve something very specific. Hopefully they'll just take it to heart and play that way without an explanation of why. Otherwise maybe we'll implement the you get 1 action (default) but can "declare" your ability to take a second action.

Thanks all...still curious if there's any more suggestions. 😁.

Ps - I'm pretty satisfied with game length (the AP hasn't been that bad)...our first game was 3 people and took 2 hours. Game 2 with same people took 1.75 hrs. It's more just having to constantly ask "r u done with your turn...or are you taking that second action?". Followed by a frenzied review of their cards, often resulting in no second action anyway.
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I think a 1-action turn can be the smart play, but I'm not convinced it is "usually" the smart play. Sure, if any of your plans could become better by waiting, then wait. But any interactions with the play area (placing a tile, trading at a colony, grabbing a milestone, funding an award) could end up getting worse if you wait too long. In addition, whenever you act to change the game state, you may be disrupting someone else's plans that are based on the current game state. How many times have you thought to yourself "I hope it comes back to me while I can still... grab that spot on the map/trade with that colony/get the award for cheap/play this project while it still qualifies with requirements"? Probably not a lot, but probably not rarely either.

Also, I would suggest this: the more choices you have, the more AP is possible. Late in the game when you have a pile of resources and a number of options, AP can get bad. By taking 2 actions, you deplete resources and options, clarifying your decisions later in the generation.

This game will always be AP-prone. In some cases going to 1 action will improve it, in other cases it will prolong it. Player count and play styles will interact with this.
 
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zdsb wrote:
It's more just having to constantly ask "r u done with your turn...or are you taking that second action?". Followed by a frenzied review of their cards, often resulting in no second action anyway.
In our two player games if we only want one action we take that action and say "pause", otherwise take the two actions and say "That's my two".
 
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Other option is to allow to play simultanously with previous player (as a first action):
- pure production cards
- pure TR/VP effects
- blue cards with action
- blue actions that simply add resources (microbes, floaters, animals)
- effects that allow to draw cards
- SP: sell patents, power plant

Any action which increase Global Parameter and/or places a tile needs to be played in standard way. Same for claiming awards & milestones. Also actions which affect other players and Colonies stuff.

This overlap probably would quicken things, however will also make tracking game harder.

Definetely, skill needed for beginners is to learn how to observe game and choose best options at the same time.
 
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Rikard Johansson
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SJS1971 wrote:
In addition, whenever you act to change the game state, you may be disrupting someone else's plans that are based on the current game state. How many times have you thought to yourself "I hope it comes back to me while I can still... grab that spot on the map/trade with that colony/get the award for cheap/play this project while it still qualifies with requirements"? Probably not a lot, but probably not rarely either.
And the counterexample to this is: How many times have you not done something because you're afraid of what an oppnenet would do if you leave a huge vunerability open. Well, if they've "tapped out" of the generation you don't have to worry about that. This is a huge factor in why you only want to do 1 action. That and the ability to change your plans and react to what your opponenents are doing.

But! If you need that tile-placement or anything other (it's really crucial). Then do your 2 actions. But you're not really playing a solo-game, you also want to mind game your opponents into thinking you still have a trick up your sleave. Force them to play it safe by trying to stay in the game as long as possible.
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Isnt this why having the option for 2 actions is better than forcing only one action per turn?

and yes stalling is a very good tactic. Several times i would just discard a card as my action for about 5 rounds in a row to see if my opponent will raise a parameter to what I want.
 
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PSantos wrote:
Which is curious, because the "standard" move in the game is a 1-action round. This is because you don't want to speed up your turn and be forced to pass too soon, leaving the ground open for your opponents to have several actions in a row.*

Hoogard wrote:
As a general rule of thumb, never do 2 actions in a row unless there's a clear benefit to it, or a great risk of waiting.

Just teach your friends this and it should be fine.
Wow. I would say that as a rule of thumb, do 2 actions unless there's a clear benefit to stalling. I feel like you're usually racing to get things down, and it's only near some few triggers where it actually matters. And in our group 1 per would make the game go slower as we're often very efficient.

As far as "multiple actions in a row" goes, I feel like that threat is a bit overvalued as well: in general if someone has more actions than you then they'll have them in a row at the end of the generation no matter whether you're all taking 1 per round or 2 per round. The only way you give an advantage is if you're taking 2 and they're taking 1.

Different play styles.....
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PSantos wrote:

* Off-topic: a few days ago, I was talking to a friend of a particular game in which you could continue playing after your opponent(s) had passed, but would suffer a penalty for doing so. But just couldn't remember which, now matter how I tried. Does anyone have an idea which game it might be?
The Networks? The best rewards when passing go to the players who pass early.
 
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