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Subject: Best general/average building strategy (no expansion) rss

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Tomas Hejna
Czech Republic
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Hi all,
my girlfriend really loves this game and after quite a lot of plays against AI she took up this almost unbeatable build-order (namely in 2 player's game):

1st year:
(stone)
Spring: Guard Tower / Barricade
Summer: Statue / Guard Tower / Palisade / Barricade
Autumn: Blacksmith / Statue / Guard Tower / Palisade / Barricade

2nd year:
Spring: Crane / Chapel / missing from 1st year
Summer: Crane / Chapel / missing from 1st year / nothing
Autumn: Barracks / Chapel / Crane / missing from 1st year

3rd year:
Wizard's Guild / missing from above

4rd year:
Church / Stable / missing from above

5th year:
Stone Wall / Town Hall / missing from above
(and during the winter all free/needed resources to soldiers via the Barracks)

In Summary:
- all the buildings from the Wizard's row, plus Statue, Palisade, Barricade, Crane, Chapel and Church; than the rest is up to you (always build the Crane before 3. and 4. level buildings)


We are playing with variant 1k6-1k6+1 King's forces... and this strategy (depending on throws and available resources through the game) brings in almost each ending about 45-50 VP... which is really hard to beat with all other strategies without taking too much risk.

I'm trying different builds against her, but usually (i.e. unless taking much higher risk than she) I simply cannot catch up to her VPs angry


Do you have the similar experience with this build-order or am I missing something?

-X-
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Stephen Groves
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
There are certainly different strategies that can produce similar results. I always go for the Inn and the Market as soon as possible and end with scores around 50. Admittedly, this is in 4 or 5 player games where other player's interference is a real concern - the Market minimises this problem.
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Tomas Hejna
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
sevorges wrote:
There are certainly different strategies that can produce similar results. I always go for the Inn and the Market as soon as possible and end with scores around 50. Admittedly, this is in 4 or 5 player games where other player's interference is a real concern - the Market minimises this problem.


And which buildings do you build next? Or other strategy to get 45-50 VPs? I usually could not cross 40 VPs that easy - if I choose other build-order.

To build Inn and Market translates to approx. -4 VPs.
 
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Chris Linneman
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
In 2p games, I usually average 50-55 following an Embassy strategy. My top score was 62, I believe.

The idea is to get the Town Hall/Embassy built as soon as possible, to provide a regular income of VPs. I usually build out to the Blacksmith for defense, the Statue for VPs, and the Inn to get the +2 chips to be converted using the Town Hall. Any extra builds go along the Fortress line for cheap extra defense and to hopefully win some of the VPs for winning winter battles by the most.

One advantage of this strategy is that the buildings are cheap, so you will build more than any other strategy. This is helpful in getting the King's Reward bonus VP each year.
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Tomas Hejna
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
QBert80 wrote:
In 2p games, I usually average 50-55 following an Embassy strategy. My top score was 62, I believe.

The idea is to get the Town Hall/Embassy built as soon as possible, to provide a regular income of VPs. I usually build out to the Blacksmith for defense, the Statue for VPs, and the Inn to get the +2 chips to be converted using the Town Hall. Any extra builds go along the Fortress line for cheap extra defense and to hopefully win some of the VPs for winning winter battles by the most.

One advantage of this strategy is that the buildings are cheap, so you will build more than any other strategy. This is helpful in getting the King's Reward bonus VP each year.


But without Barracks you still need to influence some military leaders or the Stable are vasted... and if you don't have the option (in 2p game it is quite frequent), you will not have more strength than your opponent probably. Also, the Town Hall's VPs bonus is quite costly: without Inn it slows all the further building a lot.

So IMHO the strategy I described above remains much stronger in 2 player game (or at least my experience tells me this). I tried the Embassy strategy also, but the win-ratio with it is only about 1:4; also, in 2pl. game I rarely accumulate 50-55VPs through it (as you are saying) - it is only about 45 VPs generally.

Can you write down your build-order?
 
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Rob Flowers

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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
I can usually score over 50 with a modified Embassy strategy.

Year 1 - Inn, Guard Tower, Palisade
Year 2 - Stable, Blacksmith, Barricade
Year 3 - Town Hall, Embassy
Year 4,5 - as many top row buildings as possible, always get
Statue, Chapel. Sometimes I make it to Church, otherwise I pick up
either Stone Wall or Barracks instead and use Town Hall more.

I start picking up the 5 spot at least once a year once I get stables. Then the 10 spot once it gets really dangerous. In year 5 if the enemy is a 9, I usually have to abandon the Church and pick up the 5/10 spot again and/or the Stone Wall.

As the other poster said, these are generally cheap buildings and can keep you in the race for most buildings. Also, the key is to NOT use the Town Hall every turn, it's better to hold out enough resources to reach the Church.

Before this, my favorite was a modified Farm strategy:

Year 1 - Inn, Guard Tower, Palisade
Year 2 - Market, Blacksmith, save resources for next year
Year 3 - Farm, Barracks, buy soldiers for defense
Year 4,5 - get to Wizard's Tower, then as many top row as possible

Use barracks to supplement defense, pick queen as often as possible. I just found this was a much more variable strategy.
 
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Jeff Bridgham
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
I like this order of building:

Year 1: Inn, Palisade, Guard Tower
Year 2: Barricade, Crane, Blacksmith
Year 3: Stable, Stone Wall, Fortress
Year 4: Statue, Chapel, Church/Barracks
Year 5: Church/Barracks, Wizard's Guild/Cathedral, maybe Town Hall if I have enough resources left over

The first three years are usually very doable unless you have terrible rolls (which will side track any strategy!).

Years 4 and 5 are more flexible and depend on how the resource gathering has gone. I have always gotten at least four of those buildings up. This method will get you at least 40pts even with bad rolls. With average rolls you should be at 45-50. With good rolls you will be at 55+

Jeff
P.S. If your luck holds up your best strategy is the farms. With lucky battles you will be 50+ on average rolls, but you will be taking your chances at the end of the year to do that.
 
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Tomas Hejna
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
Epworthian wrote:
I can usually score over 50 with a modified Embassy strategy.

Year 1 - Inn, Guard Tower, Palisade
Year 2 - Stable, Blacksmith, Barricade
Year 3 - Town Hall, Embassy
Year 4,5 - as many top row buildings as possible, always get
Statue, Chapel. Sometimes I make it to Church, otherwise I pick up
either Stone Wall or Barracks instead and use Town Hall more.

I start picking up the 5 spot at least once a year once I get stables. Then the 10 spot once it gets really dangerous. In year 5 if the enemy is a 9, I usually have to abandon the Church and pick up the 5/10 spot again and/or the Stone Wall.

As the other poster said, these are generally cheap buildings and can keep you in the race for most buildings. Also, the key is to NOT use the Town Hall every turn, it's better to hold out enough resources to reach the Church.


The year 3 is really hard - to build all the Crane, Town Hall and Embassy you'll need 2 gold, 4 wood, 4 stone... that's a lot of, usually not so easy to acummulate at that time (I could finish the Embassy only about 1 time in 5 tries). And when I compare the play to the strategy I posted in the start, this is slightly worse - a bit more risky and more roll dependant... win ratio was about 1(this):2(girlfriend's) in about 10 games on PC (I played both sides).
 
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Eric Engstrom
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
Oh man, by reading all of these posts I just realized that we've been playing wrong. We allow each other to build any building we want during the build phase as long as we can afford it; not the correct way which is by tier from 1 to 4.
Although it was wrong, it actually lead to a very good games where the strategies were incredibly diverse between players.
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Greg Hallam
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
bungeeboy wrote:
Oh man, by reading all of these posts I just realized that we've been playing wrong. We allow each other to build any building we want during the build phase as long as we can afford it; not the correct way which is by tier from 1 to 4.
Although it was wrong, it actually lead to a very good games where the strategies were incredibly diverse between players.


Intriguingly, the game probably still "works" doing this - its just a different angle on the game. Whicch is a testament to the solidity and flexibility of the basic mechanics..
 
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Rob Flowers

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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
XehutL wrote:
Epworthian wrote:
I can usually score over 50 with a modified Embassy strategy.

Year 1 - Inn, Guard Tower, Palisade
Year 2 - Stable, Blacksmith, Barricade
Year 3 - Town Hall, Embassy
Year 4,5 - as many top row buildings as possible, always get
Statue, Chapel. Sometimes I make it to Church, otherwise I pick up
either Stone Wall or Barracks instead and use Town Hall more.

I start picking up the 5 spot at least once a year once I get stables. Then the 10 spot once it gets really dangerous. In year 5 if the enemy is a 9, I usually have to abandon the Church and pick up the 5/10 spot again and/or the Stone Wall.

As the other poster said, these are generally cheap buildings and can keep you in the race for most buildings. Also, the key is to NOT use the Town Hall every turn, it's better to hold out enough resources to reach the Church.


The year 3 is really hard - to build all the Crane, Town Hall and Embassy you'll need 2 gold, 4 wood, 4 stone... that's a lot of, usually not so easy to acummulate at that time (I could finish the Embassy only about 1 time in 5 tries). And when I compare the play to the strategy I posted in the start, this is slightly worse - a bit more risky and more roll dependant... win ratio was about 1(this):2(girlfriend's) in about 10 games on PC (I played both sides).


Oops, sorry, forgot the Crane. I'll try it again, but I think I shoot for Crane/Town Hall year 3 and Embassy beginning of Year 4. That still gives 6 points for the Embassy.
 
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Andrea Chiarvesio
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
greghallam wrote:
bungeeboy wrote:
Oh man, by reading all of these posts I just realized that we've been playing wrong. We allow each other to build any building we want during the build phase as long as we can afford it; not the correct way which is by tier from 1 to 4.
Although it was wrong, it actually lead to a very good games where the strategies were incredibly diverse between players.


Intriguingly, the game probably still "works" doing this - its just a different angle on the game. Whicch is a testament to the solidity and flexibility of the basic mechanics..


I must try it... with the expansion, maybe... unbalanced, but funny!

Sometimes we designers worry too much about balancing the game and such things (at the end, there will always be some real geek pointing out that the game is unbalanced blah blah blah...) and we should focus more on the "fun" side of gaming
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Tomas Hejna
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Re: Best general/average building strategy?
Well, after many different games with AI or with self VS self I must admit that mine girlfriend's strategy is simply the most effective. Yes, it is not always winning - but it comes with clear winning ratio of approx. 80% of all games played. And here is why (IMO):
1) great resource / building flexibility during all the first 3 years
2) buildings with the most guaranteed basic VPs
3) solid & sufficient defense with only small risk
4) obtainable building's resources even with 5 players through all the 5 years
5) probably the best dices / resources / defense / risk / VPs ratio

bungeeboy wrote:
Oh man, by reading all of these posts I just realized that we've been playing wrong. We allow each other to build any building we want during the build phase as long as we can afford it; not the correct way which is by tier from 1 to 4.
Although it was wrong, it actually lead to a very good games where the strategies were incredibly diverse between players.


Maybe this could solve the whole problem - because the previous building's requirements usually translates to some not so optimal builds -> like having Farms with -1 to defense as a prerequisite to Merchant's Guild, which is almost useless at the time you could build it.

I like your "accidental game variant" and I must try it - but probably with some limitations: like paying 1 additional sack resource (i.e. of any resource) per each building skipped.
 
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Rob Flowers

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I'm going to have to try yours a few times to see.

The incredibly geeky side of me went through and added up the costs of all the buildings and the resulting VP (keeping in mind expenditures required through Stables or Barracks to maintain a safe military).

For both your and my strategy, I got a base of 33 VP from spending 39 resources (assuming you also purchased Stables and either Town Hall or Stone Wall). However, mine has the Inn, which can make a big difference in terms of flexibility, and in providing extra points from the Town Hall if not used. So I'm still a bit biased towards mine
 
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Anders Pedersen
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I usually start with the Palisade, then head straight for the Embassy. After that I focus on battles.
I build the Statue when I cannot build anything else, and try to get the Chapel towards the end.

Getting the Embassy in year 2 is fairly easy, due to the Crane being already build. This means the Embassy will normally yield between 13-15 points in all. Add in the possible points from the Town Hall, and this strategy has never given me less than 50 points.

We have talked lately about changing the ability of the Crane, to affect all other rows but it's own. This way the Town Hall will not necessarily be build right after the Crane, and the Embassy will take some effort too.
 
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Gabriele Pezzato
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The following strategy proves almost invincible to me as I win 99% of the times (only with particularly unlucky dice rolls I lose):

1. Get wood as your first resource
2. By the first summer build the Inn and the Palisade
3. Next, build asap the Stable and the Market
4. Complete the military row with Stonewall and Fortress
5. From now on till the end of the game, concentrate on the clergy row and build as many of the following buildings: Statue, Chapel, Church, Cathedral

I usually play with the alternate winter reinforcements (soldier tokens): I don't usually bother with soldiers (advisors 5,10,18) in the first year. From the 2nd year on and as soon as I have the Stable, I try to get soldiers at least 1 time per year and try to preserve my n. 4 token for victory points (bear in mind that with the Stonewall you also win drawn battles!)
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