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Subject: Why the rule against multiple machines of one color? rss

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Teacher Fletcher
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Four plays into Container and liking it a lot.

Why, however, do we have the rule against multiple machines of one color on a player's board?

Seems like it would create interesting shifts in supply and demand if we allowed players to specialize / concentrate on one or two colors. That player could never truly monopolize, as he maxes out at 4 machines and there are 5 of each color.

What say you? Might this be a twist usable for a veteran's variant?
 
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Steve Duff
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I might be mis-remembering, but I believe you don't produce 1 to 1. IE, you can produce 2 black items from just one machine. So more than 1 isn't needed.

edit: sounds like I'm wrong. whistle
 
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J C Lawrence
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Lawnjob wrote:
Why, however, do we have the rule against multiple machines of one color on a player's board?


I suspect it is mostly a newbie protection rule, a protective guardrail in a game which already has problems with player suicides. That said, i can think of vanishingly few cases in which I'd want to build dupliacte machines given their capital cost.
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Daniel Corban
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I agree. It would generally be a bad idea to have multiple machines of the same color. I don't think it would harm the overall game, but it would be a bad investment.
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Teacher Fletcher
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clearclaw wrote:
Lawnjob wrote:
Why, however, do we have the rule against multiple machines of one color on a player's board?


I suspect it is mostly a newbie protection rule, a protective guardrail in a game which already has problems with player suicides. That said, i can think of vanishingly few cases in which I'd want to build dupliacte machines given their capital cost.


A clear reason I can think of would be game-length control. If one container set is already gone from the supply and you know Orange is next to go, you can build an extra orange machine so that you are draining it of two every time you produce. This would give you an advantage if you were already ahead.

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J C Lawrence
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Lawnjob wrote:
A clear reason I can think of would be game-length control. If one container set is already gone from the supply and you know Orange is next to go, you can build an extra orange machine so that you are draining it of two every time you produce. This would give you an advantage if you were already ahead.


I've certainly ended and won a game by purchasing a machine and immediately producing, but those situations are rare and fragile with good players.
 
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Daniel Corban
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BrenoK wrote:
In our first play of the expansion, a player built a 2nd and a 3rd black factory, exhausting the supply, so that the black container would be rare (since he would very rarely produce anything). I don't remember the value of the black container in his card, but he won that match (actually, it was a tie between him and another player, in a 5-player game).


There are cheaper ways of making a certain color "rare". He may have won if he hadn't wasted time investing in two machines that you admit he rarely used.
 
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Kevin Nesbitt
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The one-machine-per-colour rule was a final version decision/request made by Thomas and Benno in order to encourage ease of play. Given that this was not nearly the biggest of changes I made during development, I felt that this was acceptable. It *does* help new players avoid making big mistakes, so in that regard it's a good idea.

The design of the expansion, with the Gold containers, allows for less opportunity to "lock out" someone from production, as nobody can be stopped from production of gold containers (should they want to produce them). This means that the idea of monopolizing production of other colours became possible again.



*Bear in mind that I'm no longer representing Valley Games and the official opinion of Valley Games may now differ. I'm merely speaking as the developer of the base game and the designer of the expansion.
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Nathan Morse
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So, yeah, about that expansion....
 
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Kevin Nesbitt
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Unfortunately, I no longer have access to any information regarding the release of the expansion. The last I had heard was "February", but that's clearly no longer the case.
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Teacher Fletcher
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What I've taken from this discussion is that there is no reason whatsoever to prevent multiple same-color machines among experienced players (say, a group where everyone has played at least 3 times). I believe I will now be playing without this restriction in my group.
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Kevin Nesbitt
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Just so you know, the final version of the expansion rules for monopolization of factories calls for a pool of each factory colour one less than the number of players.

For example, if you have 4 players, play with 3 of each factory colour.

This helps to actually simulate the effects of a monopoly, as well as allowing the monopoly to scale with the number of players.

Remember that while a monopoly *can* be successful, you are permanently occupying your valuable production sites, and once they're full, that's it.
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J C Lawrence
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otrex wrote:
Remember that while a monopoly *can* be successful, you are permanently occupying your valuable production sites, and once they're full, that's it.


The bigger limitation is that a player cannot discard a machine from their board. If a player could discard a machine, there would also be the question of whether it was returned to the supply or discarded from the game.
 
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Kevin Nesbitt
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I believe you could force a situation where you'd lose a factory by intentionally not being able to pay your debts. In this case, the factory would be returned to supply, effectively "breaking up" the monopoly.

Still, I don't know why you'd ever want to do this to yourself, as you'd almost certainly end up in dead last.
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