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Race for the Galaxy» Forums » General

Subject: Does this play well with 3 players/learning curve? rss

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Glen Oakland
Australia
Inman Valley
SA
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Really want this this game, but all I can see is 2&4 players listed for being the best. Unfortunately I only get to play with my 9&11 year old(unless my wife can play Ticket to Ride or Settlers), and am also wondering if it will be too steep a learning curve for my 9 year old. She hates Puerto Rico(too boring), but loves Starfarers and Hive. Not worried about my 11 year old. She loves Puerto Rico and Galaxy Trucker. Have to be careful with my 9 year old, because if I have to check the rules non stop for the first few games, she hates it(re galaxy trucker most recently). And the theme has to be good, like in Starfarers or Ticket to Ride. Hope someone can shed some helpful light, because my 11 year old and I really want to get rftg, and I know it is supposed to play well with 2, but I always look(barring Hive) for games the 3 of us can play. Too much info - hope not.
 
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Joe Kundlak
Slovakia
Bratislava
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Glen,

it all depends how she will be able to grasp the whole game. There is indeed a learning curve, especially to get into the "Get cards - settle worlds/developments - pay for them with cards - use the abilities corresponding to phases - earn VPs/new cards..." thing. I guess the icons would not be a bigger problem for a child than a grown-up, just the whole gameplay might.

But it is always the cause of trying as everyone is unique and what settles with your child, might not with your neighbour's one.


EDIT: spelling mistake
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Alex
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It has a steep learning curve, but a clever 9 year old should be able to grasp it. If she can understand Puerto Rico she should be able to understand Race. It plays fine with 3.

You may want to play a couple games with your 11 year old before introducing your 9 year old if she can't stand it when you check the rules, as this can be a bit tough to learn all at once.
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Eric Brosius
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Needham Heights
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I think 3 is the best number for Race!

Some people like 2-player games because that gives them more control and those people check 2. Others like as many as they can fit in and those people check 3.

There is absolutely no downside to playing Race with 3. Go right ahead with confidence.
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Glen Oakland
Australia
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Thanks for those helpful comments. Yes, even though my 9 year old can play PR, she finds it boring(much to our dismay), but I can, as was suggested, first learn and play with my 11 year old to get the hang of it so it will flow better when we introduce her to it. This tactic I think would have worked well with PR and other games she gets put of with by my constant rules checking. In hindsight, I realize now that for a 9 year old, sitting there and waiting for your dad to read a rule is rather disrupting if not a little boring, when you just wanna play the game. Good lesson learnt I believe. And I am glad to see it will play well with 3. Am very excited to acquire it now. Pity it's 10.30 at night here in Oz, or I'd be off to the store.
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Branko K.
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I.. am not sure whether the game is that well suited for 9 and 11 year olds.

In my experience, even adults with extensive boardgaming backgrounds are known to respond rather unpredictably to RftG. It's a wonderful game, but the learning curve can be punishing. I've had rather traumatic experiences with teaching this game and while I will always be happy to play a round, I'm not sure I could be persuaded to teach it to anyone ever again.

I'm more inclined to suggest something like Dominion, especially if you want to play with children. But if you and the kids have enough patience and are willing to put enough effort into passing that steep curve, you are certain to enjoy RftG quite a lot.
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Everett Scheer
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baba44713 wrote:
I.. am not sure whether the game is that well suited for 9 and 11 year olds.

In my experience, even adults with extensive boardgaming backgrounds are known to respond rather unpredictably to RftG. It's a wonderful game, but the learning curve can be punishing. I've had rather traumatic experiences with teaching this game and while I will always be happy to play a round, I'm not sure I could be persuaded to teach it to anyone ever again.

I'm more inclined to suggest something like Dominion, especially if you want to play with children. But if you and the kids have enough patience and are willing to put enough effort into passing that steep curve, you are certain to enjoy RftG quite a lot.


One of the biggest learning steps is the iconography on the cards. IMO kids are better at figuring these things out (akin to learning a new language) than adults even. And on the contrary, My group recently tought this game to the local AP guy, and he responded fairly well (and wasn't any more AP than I would expect for a new player)
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Daniel Hammond
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I would recommend the following:

If you have a friend that has it learn the game from someone that knows how to play. I am a huge gamer with 30 years experience and it takes some serious focus to get the mechanic while understanding the bonuses. If you are learning and teaching it will be much worse. Then having learned it, teach it with hands down with the basic starting hands. If they are both PR players you can quickly relate their choices to PR. Explore relates to Prospector that every one does and the bonus is to either get an extra card or have a better chance of finding a card that is really useful. Develop relates to a build action. Settle lets you buy or conquer new land like the Settler action. Trade is like a trade action followed up by a captain action. Consume is a captain action with double VP. Produce is like craftsman action. Show each new player how their cards fit together. Explain how the bonuses work and are listed on each card in the same place. Then help them play the game as much as they need you to. For the record I taught my wife and son. My wife who likes PR hated it (no REALLY hated it). My son will play it but it didn't wow him. Both really like Pandemic. I unfortunately really, really liked it but don't really have anyone to play with. Good luck!
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Glen Oakland
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Some more thoughtful comments,and I'm back on the fence again? This game really does seem to be a difficult one to decide upon buying when I regard all your comments on balance. Usually it is not so hard to figure out which game to get next,due to the emotional excitement and hype on BGG - I've been a sucker for that. Though I do use the Geek to research before hand, and have bought and played some brilliant games(I own only 26 games), this one does seem to put the cat amongst the pigeons.I think after you have a few failures with the family, you get more AP, especially when money is not so easy to come by. However one good deciding factor is the reasonable price, be it only for cards. But putting that against having to learn those rules...oh the HORROR. I Don't mind if the game gets some play. But imagine how I felt after reading the rules to Powergrid for God knows how long and my kids take one look at it and go "Now Way, na ah." Grrrr...That was my fault. I wanted it, just like Puerto Rico(can't tell you how much I want Agricola). I shall bide my time. Kids grow; and maybe I might be able to muster the energy to drive a 100kms to the nearest games group. Enough of my whingeing, I need to make my mind up...this isn't a therapy session.
 
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Branko K.
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Well the rulebook and the reference sheet should give you a slight heads-up what you're in for.

OR if you are not that impatient, Tom Lehmann promised there would be an official free online version of the game soon, so it might be worth it to wait a bit for a chance to actually try the game out. For free. Of course, since no date has been given, "soon" can be a really relative term..
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Glen Oakland
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baba44713 wrote:
Well the rulebook and the reference sheet should give you a slight heads-up what you're in for.

Thanks for that link.
Will definitely do just that.
 
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