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The Hell of Stalingrad» Forums » Variants

Subject: Tournament Game rss

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Steven Cunliffe
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I have had a request to produce tournament rules for the Hell of Stalingrad. I wanted to get the opinions of some all our BGG expert gamers. What goes into a good set of tournament rules? What makes a fun tournament? What aspects of THoS do you think would work well in a tournament. Finally how long should a tournament game last?

Steve
 
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Jeff Collins
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For most CCG's, CMG's and such, tournament rounds last about 50 minutes to an hour. Most of them are ran in Swiss style, so you would be looking at 4-5 rounds for an entire tournament. Usually it would take about 6 hours total, with short breaks in between rounds added in.

Just off the top of my head, after playing Stalingrad about 15 times now, is that a three turn game could be managed in about an hour if the campaign cards were removed and use all, or most, of the formations from the start for each side. You would also have to have something for games that do not finish, but need to be called for time. Having 6 or 8 guys waiting for a game to finish isn't ideal.

For us, a full 6 turn game usually lasts about three hours, but that may not be the norm for everyone. A couple of games have lasted only an hour and a half, with a couple of others going up to four.

We play at least once a week, so we would be willing to test any suggestions you have.




 
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Steven Cunliffe
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Jeff,

The suggestion I would have for a sample tournament game would be to play a 3 Turn game with two Building Districts. Each Player would choose one of the four Districts to be in the game. If you could play a 3 Turn/ 2 District Game once with Campaign Cards and once without and see which way you prefer.

Thanks,

- Steve
 
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Jeff Collins
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It looks like we have a game lined up for Friday this week for sure and possibly Tuesday.

I'll report back either Wed or Sat.


 
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Jeff Collins
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We were able to get in two games:

The first, we played two buildings, three turns, with campaign cards. On the second turn, the Soviet player's card moved the time track forward, so it was really only two. Total play time was 45 minutes, with a Soviet win and the German player only capturing one district.

The second game, we played without the campaign cards and drew reinforcements, one per building. This one was a Soviet win as well, with the German player unable to capture the last building. This game also brought up a situation that we have not previously experienced. I was the Germans, and she was the Soviets. On the first turn of the building, I depleted two of her units, both of them starting formations, so they were burned and removed from the building. On the second turn, I depleted her last unit on the building and it had a depletion effect of sacrificing two rifle units, that she did not have, forcing a retreat. So, the Soviets have no units on the building, at all.

While this may be covered in the rules, we couldn't find it, and just played on, with the Soviet player doing hold actions/reloading hand to place forts, forcing an early Break Test. Was this the correct action?

Needless to say, she gave me the stink-eye for doing that, and I just said, "Welcome to Hell." :)

Both ways were fun and ended in less than an hour - the second taking about 55 minutes, including rules lookup for the desertion of her units.


 
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Steven Cunliffe
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Telling someone "Welcome to Hell" is the proper greeting when playing Stalingrad

As for your questions:

You have to deplete a Soviet Starting formation twice to permanently remove it from the game. The formation is not burnt until it is actually destroyed. Many people have been destroying the Starting Formations when they are 1st Depleted but this is not the case.

You played it correctly anytime a player has no formations at a building all they can do is use Reloads/Hold Actions

I hope this helps...

Steve


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Steven Cunliffe
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Also Jeff that is awesome that you were able to finish the games so quickly. Based off of your success I am going to add a future option for a basic/tournament game that is 3 Turns and 2 buildings!

Great Job.

Steve
 
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Colin Houghton
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Jeff

You've played Stalingrad 15 times?> Wow!

Can I ask you some questions...?

Can I ask you... is it complex (ie ASL is complex, and Conflict of Heroes is medium)

Can you play it solo?

If you don't play it for a month, is it easy to pick up again, or do you have to do a complete re-learn of the rules?

Is it fiddly? Are there components and countersa ll over the show?

Cheers

 
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Jeff Collins
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Colin

HOS isn't anywhere near as complex as ASL. I haven't played COH, but I can say that HOS is a bit more complex than say Memoir 44, but not overly so. We learned the game from a demo at Origins, then over the course of about two games on our own and we've been going strong since.

Stalingrad Steve (the designer, above) has posted some solo rules in the files section here, altho I haven't tried them out.

I would think if you haven't played for awhile, that a quick scan of the rulebook would suffice to get you back into it. As far as mechanics go, HOS isn't very complex, but the strategy can be. And wow, it sure is fun!

As far as fiddly goes, there are quite a few unit counters and they move a bit off and on buildings, but we quickly learned to sort each unit into it's own pile or stack (I use stacks, she uses piles) and it's become second nature.

Each building tracking card has it's own counters, but there are only three on each card, so easy to take care of and you only battle for one building at a time.

If you have any interest at all in the theme, like card driven games, don't mind just a bit of luck, and like your games confrontational and have a great "mess with the other player" aspect to them, you can't go wrong with HOS.

 
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Will Miner
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I own both ASL and COH and my wife and I have played HOS at least 10-12 times. I thought HOS is not as complicated as COH. It is fast-paced but the 6 turn game can take up to 3 hours. In the many games that we've played, the end game was decided by whether or not the Germans take the last building in the last turn. To some degree, HOS reminds me of Upfront with plenty of decisions to make -- hold, play an action card, reload hand -- this game sees a lot of table time at our house.
 
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