Hugh Grotius
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We're really enjoying this game, but I have several questions, mostly (though not entirely) about the rules.

1. In our first play of the Full game (with 2 players), neither of us played more than a couple Future Events cards, so Current Events from Age A sat in the "Current Events" pile all the way thru Age IV. Should we have removed them at the end of Age I? Likewise, a couple Future Events sat in the Future Events pile, unused, for the whole game. Did we play this right? (I found one thread here suggesting that we played it right, but it sure seemed odd to have Ancient Era events sitting around while we were building the Internet.)

2. Not really a rules question, but since it's on the same topic as question 1: Neither of us built up our military, and the Events I drew rarely seemed advantageous to me. So neither of us ever played Future Events. Is it unusual to avoid playing Events cards as we did?

3. Once we reached the end of the game, we had no Age III Events cards in the Current or Future Events decks. So we didn't score any of those events ever. Suppose, though, we'd had a few Age A, plus one Age III, Event in the Future Events pile. In that case we'd have scored that single Age III event (but not the Age A events) at the end of the game?

4. Also, do military cards in one's hand become obsolete, and thus discarded at the end of an Age? E.g., Age I Tactics at the end of Age II?

5. Everyone here talks about the game being too long, but in a way, we both felt the card-slide rules made it seem kinda short (even though the Full game did take us 2.5-3 hours)! We discarded any cards remaining in the first three slots, then slid down and replenished the Row, at the start of each player's turn. We were careful about obeying our hand limits for Civil Action cards (though we did draw Wonders without incurring the extra action point penalty, oops). The cards seemed to march by fast, staying on the board for no more than 2 or 3 turns, and before we knew it each age had flown by. Sometimes we felt wistful that all these interesting Wonders, techs and action cards were whizzing by, unused. Did we miss any possible constraint on the flow of the game?

Thanks in advance!
 
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David desJardins
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Burlingame
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Grotius wrote:
Neither of us built up our military, and the Events I drew rarely seemed advantageous to me. So neither of us ever played Future Events. Is it unusual to avoid playing Events cards as we did?


Yes, it's unusual. You know that you get VPs just for playing the Event, right?
 
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Hugh Grotius
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Yes, it's unusual. You know that you get VPs just for playing the Event, right?


I realized that halfway through the game and mentioned it to my opponent, but her reaction was "doesn't seem worth it, with what can go wrong." So we were aware of it as we were in the stage of the game where the reward would have been the greatest -- and we still didn't play the cards.

Anyway, in our next game, I plan to play the darned things, just to see how it affects the flow of the game.
 
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Steve Bachman
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Grotius wrote:
Quote:
Yes, it's unusual. You know that you get VPs just for playing the Event, right?


I realized that halfway through the game and mentioned it to my opponent, but her reaction was "doesn't seem worth it, with what can go wrong." So we were aware of it as we were in the stage of the game where the reward would have been the greatest -- and we still didn't play the cards.

Anyway, in our next game, I plan to play the darned things, just to see how it affects the flow of the game.

The Age A events don't include any negative effects. Having them sit through the end of the game not only throws away the points for seeding Future Events, but also the freebies from the Era A cards.

You played everything right except in point 4, any military cards that are not from either the current era or the one immediately prior are discarded, regardless if they are tactics, bonuses, wars, or held civil cards.
 
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David desJardins
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Ward wrote:
The Age A events don't include any negative effects. Having them sit through the end of the game not only throws away the points for seeding Future Events, but also the freebies from the Era A cards.


That's not a reason to play events, both players get those benefits when they come up.
 
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Tim Seitz
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Glen Allen
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DaviddesJ wrote:
Ward wrote:
The Age A events don't include any negative effects. Having them sit through the end of the game not only throws away the points for seeding Future Events, but also the freebies from the Era A cards.


That's not a reason to play events, both players get those benefits when they come up.

Not necessarily. The two if-you-have-an-unused-worker events only benefit players with unused workers. If your opponents don't have any, that's possibly more powerful reason to seed an event than the small culture bonus.
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Tim Seitz
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Grotius wrote:
Quote:
Yes, it's unusual. You know that you get VPs just for playing the Event, right?


I realized that halfway through the game and mentioned it to my opponent, but her reaction was "doesn't seem worth it, with what can go wrong." So we were aware of it as we were in the stage of the game where the reward would have been the greatest -- and we still didn't play the cards.

If you add up all the opportunities to play events, you're looking at about 36 incremental culture. If you're the only one to seed events, not only are you now way ahead on culture, but you have considerably more information about impending events and can plan appropriately.
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Daniel Corban
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The fact that you didn't build military is a major factor in why the events didn't seem worthwhile.
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Francesco Pessina
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For me, the main advantage to play an event is that you, and only you, will know what will happen in the "near" future and get prepared to it. Your opponents will not know what they will facing, and maybe can be cought unprepared.
For sure, playing events is worth it!
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M.J.E. Hendriks
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Agree. In one 2-player game my wife didn't play any Events in the first age, because she either didn't have any or they were really bad for her (I was ahead in military. This gave me a huge advantage over her! devil
 
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John Brock
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out4blood wrote:
Grotius wrote:

I realized that halfway through the game and mentioned it to my opponent, but her reaction was "doesn't seem worth it, with what can go wrong." So we were aware of it as we were in the stage of the game where the reward would have been the greatest -- and we still didn't play the cards.

If you add up all the opportunities to play events, you're looking at about 36 incremental culture. If you're the only one to seed events, not only are you now way ahead on culture, but you have considerably more information about impending events and can plan appropriately.

But that's only the case if only one player seeds events; if more than one player contributes, then you will only have information about your own contributions, will only be able to plan for part of the events, and will have very little control over when those events actually happen.

Which means that playing events can actually be quite risky; for example, I play colony A and plan to increase my military to take it, but meanwhile the other player plays colony B and plans the same! Which colony will actually show up first? Who will end up with which one? This happened in a recent game I played; my opponent had a much stronger military, but I was able to bid the cost of the first colony up quite high and then "let him take it", knowing there would be a second chance along any minute now. Having knocked down his military edge, when the second came around, it was mine for an affordable price. I ended up winning, largely because of this one play -- but it only worked because his colony came up first!

So, this ends up being classic "game theory". If nobody plays events, then nobody scores points, nobody takes risks, and nobody gains or loses as a result of those risks -- you're all equal. If everybody plays events, then everybody scores, everybody takes risks, and everybody has a chance of gaining or losing -- you're all equal. It's only when one person plays them and another doesn't that someone gets an advantage from it. But that means that each player always has a reason to play them -- either to be the only one, or to prevent the other person from being the only one!
 
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Tim Seitz
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If you're going to bring game theory into this then the answer, as you pointed out, should be obvious. You should always play events!

If no one is playing events, you can improve your outcome by playing events, therefore play events.

If your opponent is playing events, you can improve your outcome by playing events to counter his advantage, therefore play events!

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Hugh Grotius
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Thanks for the replies. In tonight's game, I played a lot of events, and I finally made a couple colonies. Even though I only made two, they were enough to really unlock my civ; the new, cheaper workers propelled me to my first win. (Over a nine-year-old! Hey, what can I say, she's smart! I can barely beat her at Race for the Galaxy, and she wins most of our games of Agricola. And she plays faster than me.)

I imagine I'll tire of TTA eventually, but for now I'm completely addicted. What a great design. I really didn't expect it to be this interesting.
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