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Subject: Resolution of ties rss

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Ulrich Roth
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The rules state:

"In case scoring a lane results in a tie, the lane stays in the game for now.
Continue to play out the next turn as usual.
Score effects do not apply any longer."


That leaves quite a few questions open, e.g.:

- Will the tied lane be scored eventually? If so, when and how?
- To what extent can a tied lane be subject to players' actions and card effects?
- What happens if the players have won one lane each, and the tied lane is the third and last?

Beyond the technical aspect, I wonder if keeping a tied lane in play enhances the game-play sufficiently in order to justify the resulting loss in elegance (and perhaps clarity).
The designers must have thought so, since the occurence of ties would be very easy to avoid in the first place.
Of the many conveivable solutions, my favourite would be to simply ban or punish ties, i.e. either:
"It is not allowed to place the 4th card to a lane creating a tie."
or
"Whoever plays the 4th card to a lane creating a tie, loses that lane."
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Dario Reinhardt
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Hey Ulrich,

thank you for your very interesting thoughts here. And maybe we have to get clearer about ties in the rulebook. Ties only happen, if a lane is very close. So this rule kind of makes those interesting moments, even a bit more intense.

But you are totally right, that this creates a bunch of exceptions. At the moment your questions would be answered as follows:

- Will the tied lane be scored eventually? If so, when and how? -> as long as it really is tie, it does not score. BUT: If Scoring effects e.g. Sellsword allow one player to win the lane, it is scored.
- To what extent can a tied lane be subject to players' actions and card effects? -> A tied lane behaves same as any other lane. The only difference to another lane is, that at least one player has four cards in one lane. But even this can be changed and the lane can be turned back into a lane that would still not be scored (e.g. by destroying or moving the 4th card of a player)
- What happens if the players have won one lane each, and the tied lane is the third and last? -> Also in this case, everything behaves normal. In most cases the player with more money gets the next card and wins the Scoring phase after his own deployment phase.
 
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Fabian Fischer
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Essentially the idea is that you just follow the normal game rules after a tie happened. You keep playing the lane as usual, and you keep scoring it as usual (until it's not a tie anymore). It's a special case, yes, but it doesn't create a lot of gameplay exceptions otherwise.

We could forbid players to create ties in the first place of course, but doing your strength calculations to find out that you're not allowed to take an action isn't as interesting as finding out that you have the option to tie a lane (and having to consider the future implications of following that line of play). So we felt keeping a tied lane in play as its own piece to the complexity puzzle was simply the rule that adds the most potential depth to the game.
 
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Ulrich Roth
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Nachtfischer wrote:
Essentially the idea is that you just follow the normal game rules after a tie happened. You keep playing the lane as usual, and you keep scoring it as usual (until it's not a tie anymore)
So, to all effects and purposes, the tied lane is treated as any normal lane? Thus, it is also allowed, for instance, to place a fifth card there?

If the lane gets scored when "its not a tie any more", actually that could happen instantly, if you apply the rule that score effects no longer count. If both sides have different amounts of score effects on their side of the lane (which is quite likely) and these are taken away, the tie is already broken.

Another point that needs clarification is if additional cards played into the tied lane do or do not activate their score effects, if they have any, or if all score effects are banned from this lane permanently.
 
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Fabian Fischer
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Yes you can play a fifth card there. Why wouldn't that be the case? A lane is scored if a player has "4 or more" cards according to the rules.

The lane doesn't get scored "if it's not a tie", it simply gets scored in the scoring phase that happens at the end of a turn. Just as before. You just don't have to do the math if it would be exactly the same as last time.

As for the Score effects, they also trigger again every scoring phase. Actually not too many rules change in case of a tie. You just keep doing what you did all the rounds before.
 
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Ulrich Roth
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What does the phrase in the rules

"Score effects do not apply any longer."

refer to exactly, then?

If it weren't there, I guess I would find it all much easier to understand.

Thanks for your patience...
 
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Fabian Fischer
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It's just there to make sure you're not for example doubling strength with the Fairy every turn again and again (4, 8, 16...). Everything just goes back to its base strength and effects resolve again next time.
 
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Ulrich Roth
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Ok, thanks, now I get what the rules are intended to mean.

Perhaps the corresponding paragraph in the rules could be expanded into something like this:

Resolving ties

If scoring a lane results in a tie, the lane stays in the game for now.
It is treated like any other lane, i.e. cards can be placed there and it can be subject to card effects.
Score effects are deactivated until the scoring phase of the next turn, when they will be reactivated, etc.
As soon as, in the scoring phase of a future turn, the lane is no longer tied, it will be scored (and then closed).

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Fabian Fischer
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I think that would indeed make it clearer. We'll consider changing the section when we revise our game rules. Thank you very much for bringing this up, Ulrich.
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