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Subject: Oh Boy, first five player games lasts over 6 hours! rss

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Catherine Short
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Bristol
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I strolled into the local monthly games meeting with lots of time to play games. I was then approached by someone asking if I was interested in playing either Android or Battlestar Galactica: The Board Game. At the point I had played neither game, so was up for both.

After a quick poll with people the decision was Android, which I was quite pleased about as I was very interested in playing. We then got the warning from the owner of the game that it would take a long time to play. The box said 2-4 hours, and as there were five of us I thought it would be nearing the four hour mark. I had a lot of time, and thought I could get another game in before I had to leave, so was willing to give it a try. There were two people who had played the game before and three newbies.

We sat down at 1.30pm and the board started to be set out. Luckily the owner had tuck boxes for each character so the set up was quite quick and easy. The rule book was huge and after everything was explained all the new players had a confused expression on their face. Luckily it made a lot more sense after the game had started.

I was playing the character Rachel Beckmann, a bounty hunter who had to get lots of money for victory points. The whole game just oozed theme. With all the flavour text and different plots I felt I could easily get into my character. I have only role played once, and really enjoyed it, but can see how this is a bridge between games and role playing. My boyfriend is an avid role player and hates these kinds of games as he thinks role playing is strictly better. He likes board games and role playing to be kept separate.

So straight away I had to wonder whether every character was equally matched. After one play I can not make a comment on this, but feel that it would pretty hard to accomplish this, even with a lot of play testing. Rachel has a slow car, so can not travel very far each move. Added to the fact that she starts in the moon, it is slow to get down to earth unless she somehow gets a drop ship.

So we are about four days into the twelve day game and the clock is approaching 4pm. It hadn’t felt like we were taking that long. There was a lot of talking going on and laughing which helped the time fly by. We mused over the flavour text and tried to get Caprice to go insane.

At about day nine I felt like I wanted the game to end. It was about 6.30pm and we had been sitting at the same table for 5 hours. I realised I would not be able to get another game in before I had to go, but so far I had enjoyed the group of people I was playing with and the game. We finally started packing up at about 7.30pm, so the game did speed up as we went along. This is understandable as everyone was getting to grips with the rules. With regards to the strategy of winning, that is still going to take a while to get to grips with. As every different character has different strengths and weaknesses, multiple plays will only just scratch the surface of what the game has to offer.

Overall I had an enjoyable afternoon. I was a bit disappointed I only played one game, but I did enjoy playing Android. I definitely think this was helped by the group of people I was playing with. As you have to play bad (twilight) cards on other people to keep playing your good (light) cards this is not really a game for people who hold a grudge. Everyone has to be a little bit evil so the game can progress as intended. There were a few times I was stuck with twilight cards I wanted to play on others, but could not play as the conditions were not satisfied. Therefore I was not able to play light cards very easily in my turn.

This game could definitely be played with five players in four hours if you exclude setting up, packing away and every player has played the game before. I would like to play this again if I have the time and other people want to play it. Another person new to the game said it would be a good 2 hour game, which I can kind of agree with as well. This was my first role playing board game I have played before and I am looking forward to trying others like Arkham Horror.

Floyd won the game with 43 points and Caprice was a close second with 41 points. Interestingly Floyd had the same suspect for both innocent and guilty, but they were killed off quite early in the game. So rather than concentrate on adding counters to the suspects he picked up victory points from the conspiracy and getting the tokens off the board. Caprice got the guilty suspect right and the extra 15 points was a huge boost.
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Jorge Arroyo
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Nice session. Usually I'd say that this is not a game to learn and play for the first time with so many players, but it looks like you did enjoy it We're playing 2 player games in about 2h so once everyone knows the rules well, it's certainly possible to play it in a much shorter time...
 
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Geoff King
United States
Annandale
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cj1582 wrote:
So we are about four days into the twelve day game and the clock is approaching 4pm. It hadn’t felt like we were taking that long. There was a lot of talking going on and laughing which helped the time fly by. We mused over the flavour text and tried to get Caprice to go insane.

cj1582 wrote:
Overall I had an enjoyable afternoon. I was a bit disappointed I only played one game, but I did enjoy playing Android. I definitely think this was helped by the group of people I was playing with.


This is exactly how I'd like any five hour game session to go. Yeah, I can see being disappointed at not getting to play other games, but if you had fun playing the one marathon Android session that's what really counts.
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Craig Rose
United States
Walnut Creek
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In my games, it's been one hour per player. Aside from the first game, a 4 player game which took almost five hours, subsequent 4 players games have been running in 4 hours and the 3 player games have been running in 3 hours.

As of yet, I have not played a 5 player game, but I don't think it's something I want to tackle.
 
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Emivaldo Sousa
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Against my own advice I ventured in a 4-player Android session this Sunday. All of the other players were newbies and didn't read the rulebook prior to the encounter. So, I had to explain the rules, then explain all my house rules and we started about 3 PM and finished around 10:30pm (with a break for snacks).

The game would not be my first choice for 4 players, It is about the only game I have that I don't like to explain and definitely seven hours is too much for what the game is. But, hey! I was with good friends, everybody was in an excellent humor and the afternoon turned out great.

The added time is natural for us as we are not native English speakers. In a game with that amount of text it is quite normal.
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Simon Crowe
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Our first game was 5 players and took 7 hours. So the fact that I'm eager to play again speaks of how much I enjoyed it all the way through.

For new players I would advise looking through BGG for useful bits and pieces. There's an excellent beginners rules explanation, and some good reference sheets too.
 
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