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Subject: Played a game, do these scores seem right? rss

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Mike Horsepool
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Just played a game the other night, and the final scores for our fist time playing where something like
21, 12, 10, 8.

Does this seem about right? It was insanely hard for us to make any progress due to how tight money is, and upkeep of the trains. No one really started scoring until about turn 6.

Just curious if I should reread the rules to see if I missed something, or if that seems about right?
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Anthony Simons
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First of all, were you playing Basic or Standard?

Scores of eight to twelve seems unusually low for our games, but it may be down to the type of game played and the player mix. Track links alone usually score around these amounts for a four-player game.

Do you have a breakdown of scores? I can see this happening if the players in question continually ship for income alone, but that's like the players hardly built anything and made few shipments.

Did you score for track links?
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Mike Horsepool
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Standard game. We did score track links. Only 1 of us (The man off in the lead) made more than 1 VP delivery. The rest of the time was spent just trying to keep our heads above water. I'd also like to note that the cube distrobution was terrible and for the most part only 3 link deliveries were possible.

The gameplay seemed right, but the difficulty we had getting up the income track didn't seem right. I re-read a few rules as we played, but I couldn't spot anything I might have overlooked.
 
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Anthony Simons
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It sounds like it might just be a case of inexperience with the system, then. I don't mean that in a negative way, either; many of us playing Steam started out playing earlier games in the same family so familiarity with those systems made Steam easier to grok.

I think after everybody has had a few plays you'll see a lot more VP shipping; from what you've said I don't think you've missed much. As a matter of interest, though, you did remember to add in scores for final income?
 
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Mike Horsepool
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We did

I was thinking that too, it's a rough go the first time around. And our cubes didn't help any. Just seemed like unusually low scores and an uphill battle to get out of the negatives.
 
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James Nathan
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Just played our first game the other night and that was roughly our scores as well; agreed that it's probably just inexperience with the system.
 
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Knock knock open up the door it's Riel
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Wow, that does seem low. I haven't played standard Steam yet, but only 1 VP shipment per player must be unusual. Is it really that hard to get your income up in standard Steam?

Did you pay your upkeep in income instead of money? That's the only thing I can think of...
 
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Mik Svellov
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There is no question about the scores being low.
However, I can easily see why new players may have played cautiously and not knowing when to begin going for VP's instead of income. Not to mention being able to spot the most efficient track building and shipping opportunities.

Have fun discovering the opportunities, and I am sure your scores will soon double!
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Stan Smith
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Mike, we missed a key rule that I discovered by reading the geek (including a rules posting):

- You play the delivery phase twice per turn, and one of those times you can upgrade your train (for free) rather than delivering a cube.


We played the delivery phase once, train upgrades were always allowed but at a cost of 4+level.


Stan
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Mike Horsepool
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stanpaulsmith wrote:
Mike, we missed a key rule that I discovered by reading the geek (including a rules posting):

- You play the delivery phase twice per turn, and one of those times you can upgrade your train (for free) rather than delivering a cube.


We played the delivery phase once, train upgrades were always allowed but at a cost of 4+level.


Stan


Looking at the rule book, there it is. I read the section on "Moving a goods cube" and not "Phase 3." when playing on saturday. But it appears I missed it when I read the rules the first time too.
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Pasta Batman
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That would do it. BTW, I played Steam basic yesterday for the first time. No prior experience except for one game of RRT, and I was very struck by how difficult it was to keep our heads above water and make headway up the VP track, especially after reading the comments here dissing the basic game. Obviously we have a lot to learn, and I'm really looking forward to it.
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Steve K
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stanpaulsmith wrote:
We played the delivery phase once, train upgrades were always allowed but at a cost of 4+level.


Stan - it sounds like you were playing in the same game as Mike, in which case there might be a further rules issue.

Mike said you played the Standard game, but you say train upgrades cost money. In the Standard game, all actions are free (any "cost" is effectively built into the turn order auction bid). Only in the Basic game do some actions have a cost.

You also say "train upgrades were always allowed". You probably got this right, but just to check: the only two ways of upgrading trains are to choose the Locomotive action (so at most one player can do this each turn) or to forfeit one of your two goods movements. You cannot simply pay for a train upgrade any time you like.
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Anthony Simons
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Steve's right; I think another run through the rules may be in order. It was easy for me (and the others in our group) to grasp the rules as we're all AoS veterans. However, being firmly entrenched in that groove, it was also very easy for us to miss some of the nuances and differences in Steam.

Two that spring to mind are that bids may start at $0 (something we're not liable to do anyway) and the high bidder has to outbid himself if somebody else chooses the turn order action and he's the only bidder left (whereas in AoS the turn order action did not preclude the passing player from outbidding the current high bidder).

There are other rules you might miss/might have missed; I suggest a scan of the forums here before your next game.
 
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Mike Horsepool
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We did both of the bidding things correct. Just the Trains and Delivery Twice we did wrong from what I've been reading. Someday I'll get the rules to a new game 100% correct the first time.laugh
 
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Rob Keys
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Huh...

My Group only shipped once too, and we barely caught that upgrades are free on the shipping phase. I realized our mistake today when i read a session report and scores managed to get well into the 50s.

This was our first train game (other than Ticket to Ride ), and i felt like the rules glossed over the minor detail of two shipments now that i have re-read them. I just feel better that i'm not the only one!
 
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Pasta Batman
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AngstAK wrote:
This was our first train game (other than Ticket to Ride ), and i felt like the rules glossed over the minor detail of two shipments now that i have re-read them.
I think the glossing was done by the reader in this case. The double-action is mentioned in the listing of the six phases, and referred to extensively throughout the Move Goods/Improve Locomotive section on page 11.
 
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Mike Horsepool
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pastabatman wrote:
AngstAK wrote:
This was our first train game (other than Ticket to Ride ), and i felt like the rules glossed over the minor detail of two shipments now that i have re-read them.
I think the glossing was done by the reader in this case. The double-action is mentioned in the listing of the six phases, and referred to extensively throughout the Move Goods/Improve Locomotive section on page 11.


I didn't read page 11, but I did read page 12, like three times during the game looking for what it was I was doing wrong. Is it in the phases quick sheet? Hmm, didn't see it.

But this is how I teach games. Play a once, feel something is wrong, then check the geek
 
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Pasta Batman
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MrThou wrote:
pastabatman wrote:
AngstAK wrote:
This was our first train game (other than Ticket to Ride ), and i felt like the rules glossed over the minor detail of two shipments now that i have re-read them.
I think the glossing was done by the reader in this case. The double-action is mentioned in the listing of the six phases, and referred to extensively throughout the Move Goods/Improve Locomotive section on page 11.


I didn't read page 11, but I did read page 12, like three times during the game looking for what it was I was doing wrong. Is it in the phases quick sheet? Hmm, didn't see it.

But this is how I teach games. Play a once, feel something is wrong, then check the geek

No worries, it is the same way with me, I usually commit at least one whopper on every first game I introduce. I'm not aware of any 'phases quick sheet', but that would have been a good thing for Mayfair to provide. I was talking about the listing of the phases on page 5.
 
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Mike Horsepool
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That's what I ment. Page 3, my bad. The back page would have also been a handy spot to list everything. Ahwell. Even with the insanely hard uphill battle it's still a good game. There are a few games where I like the unofficial "I can't read the rules right" harder varient is better.
 
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