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Subject: 4-Player Cut-throat (ie. non-partnership) rss

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Jeff Michaud
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Played KoS for the 1st time... and it was a 4 player game so we followed the rules and played "partners". However to me the way it played was not overly exciting. I would think every man/woman for themselves (no partnerships) would be more existing.

Has anyone actually played this way (cut-throat)? I did read the designer's notes at the end of the rules and see that originally 4 players were not with playing as partners and do kind of see the reason for it but wonder if the reason given (ties too likely anyway) is really that common.
 
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Joel J
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You should try it out and let us know how you liked it. I imagine for me it would be much less the likelihood of ties that would be the problem, and much more the chaos factor.

Of course, I will do the usual and say that once everyone understands the game, which takes a while, the team game as it is, is really tense. It's very hard to be on the same page as your partner since most of your plans will be very complex, while at the same time, if you can coordinate well, you are so much stronger than an individual. Since there's only two teams, there's much less chaos in terms of which faction is likely to win than the 3p game, but there's much more unknown with the communication breakdown between partners. It presents some interesting decisions.
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Joel J
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Actually, now that I think about it more, I would say the tiebreaker issue would probably be as much of a problem for me as the chaos. Since about 90% of the time you're playing with the tiebreaker in mind, I think it would be very hard to figure out just where you had a true advantage. Probably someone could match you almost any way you go. But anyway, I don't want to discourage you from trying it out
 
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Peer Sylvester
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The 2player-partnership-game is the most difficult to master. So I recommend playing a different number of players first. However, if you play with 4 and its your first game, you may ignore the "Dont discuss" - rule, if it helps you (although I know at least one game group were this advice backfired; they over-analysed the game and came to the conclusion, nobody could ever gain an edge and stoped playing!)

Of course youre welcome to play 4players cutthroat. It may work out, but there is a big chance of a game were nobody could archieve anything meaningful, which is frustrating. But that doesnt have to be the case (I played this variant several times and about a third worked out OK).

Have fun!
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Jeff Michaud
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fwiw, I did find a session report (in the form of a review) of a 4-player cut-throat game at http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/263513
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