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Subject: Streamlined Vinci - Imagination of the new gameplay rss

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Jan B.
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With this posting I would like to concentrate on the streamlining "Small World" has experienced compared to "Vinci".

Certain changes have been made to accelerate the gameplay and to increase transparency. While I am looking forward to this "modernization" (or Euro-transformation), it might limit the replayability of "Small World". But that remains to be seen.

The following changes will make the gameplay more fluid:

1. Separation Rule
You are now allowed to conquer regions directly adjacent to your declined race. One thing less to be concerned about. Experienced players may use this as a strategy to protect their declined race. Good rule. And I don't think that this will make the game more stagnant. In Vinci this rule was needed to keep the board moving, but in Small World there are enough rule changes, which will make the game really dynamic. Additionally it will make the diplomacy trait better. I didn't like it before, now I may do.

2. Cohesion
You don't need to protect the cohesion of your realm. When your territories are disconnected due to your own decision or an attack, you don't have to concentrate on uniting them again. On the other hand, it will speed up the attack process as you can concentrate on basic concepts like attacking regions which benefit your race advantages. From my point of view, keeping in mind the effects of the cohesion rule made Vinci too complicated. Of course, many liked that rule. But I think this decision was coherent with the other rule changes.

3. Reinforcement Dice
The dice will be used like a cop-out for poor planning from non-experienced users. It will make the game easier and more forgiveable. Just concentrate on regions which benefit you most and try to get them, without counting or counting what the most efficient distribution of attack tokens would be. More experienced users may develop strategies for a more efficient use of the reinf. dice to keep the game challenging for themselves. It will certainly add randomness, but to a manageable extent. If the dice sucks, I will abandon him without further ado.

4. No hidden defense bonus
Every defensive bonus is embodied by a token. Race tokoens, caves, forts, mountains etc. count as 1. And then you add 2 for the region itself and this part of the attack calculation is done. "Hidden bonus" in Vinci was to count mountain and forest regions and to keep "militia" in mind. This will make the planning of your attack phase much easier. And it keeps the gameplay overall coherent.

5. More fluid decline phase
If you decide to decline just swith over your race tokens. No distracting and unwieldy decline tokens are needed. Basically I really like the "switching over" of tokens. Uwe Rosenberg, the game designer of Agricola, Le Havre and Bohnanza, likes to double-use tokens as well. I'm a huge fan of this practice.

6. Scoring Equality
Every region scores as one point. That's great for fast counting, esp. for your declined race. It was really difficult to keep track of those regions that count and those that don't (mountains, esp. confusing with mountaineers). In Small World you just count all your regions and add a optional bonus for your race. Easy.

7. Score keeping
Keeping track of the opponents score and acting accordingly was tiring for non-competitve gamers. Now everyone can concentrate on those actions that benefits themselves most. Only very competitive groups will really count points. But most groups will have much more fun with the missing transparency in this case.

Bottom line. Small World is easy and transparent and concentrates on its core "USP": declining, rebuilding of very different races. Just from reading the rules and from my experiences with Vinci, I think this new game offers a good balance for part-time and advanced gamers. Especially the flawless attack and counting phase are very attractive to me.

Skipping the cohesion and separation rule will enlarge the focus on the declination of races further and will make expansion sets more valuable and quite essential for extended replayability.

Because of the streamlining, I have slight concerns about the replayability. Advanced gamers might feel handcuffed in their tactical and strategical decision making, when everything is so easy to calculate (besides score keeping). But I hope that the presence and the effects of the opponents, which will have the ultimate freedom to play up their race' strength, will keep this game challenging for everyone.
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Mik Svellov
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Quote:
4.No hidden defense bonus
Every defensive bonus is embodied by a token. Race tokoens, caves, forts, mountains etc. count as 1. And then you add 2 for the region itself and this part of the attack calculation is done. "Hidden bonus" in Vinci was to count mountain and forest regions and to keep "militia" in mind. This will make the planning of your attack phase much easier. And it keeps the gameplay overall coherent.

But players still has to remember which kind of token award you defensive bonus:
Hole-in-the-Ground, Hero and Dragon tokens should not be added
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Jan B.
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Quote:

But players still has to remember which kind of token award you defensive bonus: Hole-in-the-Ground, Hero and Dragon tokens should not be added


Correct, those tokens have to be recognized differently.

But technically that aren't bonus tokens... those tokens prohibit any attack of the region they are in. It will be common to place those very important tokens besides the usual stack of race and defensive tokens to point out: don't touch this

I think the basic message should be clear. Count the number of tokens added by two and you got your yardstick for an attack. The exceptions (Halflings, Heros, Dragons) only prove the rule.

But they aren't hidden. You can be sure that the Halfling will place his hole-in-the-ground very prominently on the board
 
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H-B-G
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Interesting article, although I'm not sure streamlining is the word I would use. Considering the range of special powers in compariosn to Vinci, with the addition of new exceptions to the rules given by the likes of Ghouls, Sorcerers, Elves, Seafaring & others together with the addition of that die. It all seems a little more complicated. I would have said that if anything Vinci is a streamlined version of Small World.
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Mik Svellov
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kent_bro wrote:
But technically that aren't bonus tokens... those tokens prohibit any attack of the region they are in.

Which is why the Hero and Dragon should have included that "STOP" sign shown on the Special Power tokens.
That would have been more useful than the Mountain tokens.
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Allen Doum
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The removal of cohesion and the adding of the "May not attack" locations seem to complement each other. If you had to worry about cohesion, it would be more difficult to bypass the prohibited places.

Players will still get an advantage for keeping their races together, as they can protect borders to discourage attacks, while leaving the areas behind the lines with one token.

I think taking the Flying race will paint a big target on your forehead. I certainly would make a priority out of forcing that race into decline.
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Jan B.
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Quote:
Quote:
kent_bro wrote:
But technically that aren't bonus tokens... those tokens prohibit any attack of the region they are in.

Great Dane wrote:
Which is why the Hero and Dragon should have included that "STOP" sign shown on the Special Power tokens.
That would have been more useful than the Mountain tokens.


I recognized that the "STOP" tokens have all the same shape. Not that alarming than your proposal, but DoW gave indications about them being exceptions.

Anyway... while playing I would propose to stack "bonus" tokens together, while placing those exceptional tokens beside the real stack.
 
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Jan B.
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DaveD wrote:
It all seems a little more complicated. I would have said that if anything Vinci is a streamlined version of Small World.


Thank you for reading and replying to my thread :)

As you know I think Small World will be far more easier to grasp and will have a more fluid gameplay.

Most important for unexperienced players will be to understand their own benefits. That fits the gameplay as all other player's tokens are passive. The active player needs only be aware of his own skills and start distributing the stacks. While distributing he has to keep far less exceptions and rules in mind compared to Vinci.

In a next step (and that will keep the game challenging for advanced players) the active player should keep in mind the benefits of the other races, because he should know how to harm them most efficiently. But that will come by time. To start "Small World" and have fun with it, the barriers have been diminished.
 
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Mik Svellov
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kent_bro wrote:
I recognized that the "STOP" tokens have all the same shape. Not that alarming than your proposal, but DoW gave indications about them being exceptions.

But then they decided it was better the gamers figured it out by themselves?

Quote:
Anyway... while playing I would propose to stack "bonus" tokens together, while placing those exceptional tokens beside the real stack.
Seems reasonable - as long as they don't cover other important information in the space.
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Jan B.
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Great Dane wrote:
kent_bro wrote:
I recognized that the "STOP" tokens have all the same shape. Not that alarming than your proposal, but DoW gave indications about them being exceptions.

But then they decided it was better the gamers figured it out by themselves?


I never saw the real game board and I can only imagine how confusing all those coloured tokens etc. might be. But in a sense, yes. The players should be able to figure this out. As I already stated, Small World makes it only a must to understand the own benefits, while allowing for really basic strategy to not really care for the other benefits. You will learn soon enough if you attack a dragon's pit ;) The opponent won't allow it, when he's aware of his own race. So (without knowing how wildly coloured the clustered game board will be) I see no problems.

Great Dane wrote:
kent_bro wrote:
Anyway... while playing I would propose to stack "bonus" tokens together, while placing those exceptional tokens beside the real stack.
Seems reasonable - as long as they don't cover other important information in the space.


Remains to be seen. I have no idea how clustered the board will be.
 
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Mik Svellov
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kent_bro wrote:
I never saw the real game board and I can only imagine how confusing all those coloured tokens etc. might be.


Actually, I haven't heard of anyone having difficulties playing the original game, and I don't expect they will have with the new game either - which is why I find the UGLY mountains completely unnecessary.

And - as I have pointed out - if they really wanted to make it "Vinci for Dummies", then have missed a few other obvious opportunities.
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Jan B.
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Sorry, but why didn't you reply this directly at the beginning of the thread? I had the impression you've been nitpicking, but only now I am aware of your position. If you already stated that you dislike the mountains and the basic decision to the revision somewhere on BGG, I didn't recognize. Should I?

Coming back to my statement:

It increases transparency, that

1. one token represents one defensive bonus.
2. every region scores one point.

You said it wasn't necessary (I disagree), resp. if those changes are made, they should have been implemented smarter (I wait and see).
 
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