Are there any rules to let you play a game of Warrior Knights solo?
Also, when my son and I play the two player game, we rarely get to attack one another before the games is over...are there any rules for spicing up a two-player game.. for example:
1. Having a third Baron that players play alternately
2. Having one or two extra Barons that act according to some pre-programmes or random set of actions?
3. Just having two Barons each, but only one will score influence.. so the other is a minor ally and just a spoling Baron against the enemy?
I don't think this game can be played solo because of the secret planning phase of action cards and very strong diplomatic aspect. A complete redesign would be needed to make solo available.
Most of the time I play with four or five players, but this is what speeds up the player conflict for us (should also work for two):
At the start of the game give each player two randomly chosen 100 cities. Setup the strongholds and nobles afterwards (nobles cannot be placed on other player's city).
This setup jumps over that boring first round where everybody just tries to grab neutral cities, so the players can go straight ahead for their necks.
Also the expansion Crown and Glory helps a bit to support the player conflict with it's town levies, forced march action and several invention cards.
The variants to extend the game lenght should make sure you've got to clash your opponent a few times, good ol' increasing the infuence pool (15 per player or more) or Revolt variant (drawing fate cards at the end of turn to see if game ends).
The player conflict greatly increased in our group once that new players understood these points:
1. Taking neutral city is 1 influence for you, but taking opponent's city is 1 influence for you AND -1 influence for him.
2. Regular army is practically immortal! Don't be afraid of battles, because even if you got your noble killed, it's no big deal (unless you've got some nasty cards on you like Broken line or No heir). Your nobles will come back at the end of the turn, or their heirs respectively.
3. With Mobilize forces you can move AND attack with multiple nobles (if they are in reach). Positioning your nobles on roads and attacking stronghold with two or three at once can win the game.
Regarding solo I've played a couple of games using the following rules. This is going from memory and doesn't necessarily cover all eventualities but whenever I came up against a potential problem I created a rule that I felt was fair and allowed the game to continue.
Firstly there's no point trying to introduce a mobile 'AI' baron with nobles and so on to play against as there's too many decisions that you would have to make for it and it's impossible to play with two hats on whilst trying to remain unbiased. So what i did was make it a game vs a static AI baron.
Here's some brief rule changes I made:
1) Planning Phase:
- The 6 AI baron's action cards were drawn randomly and placed into the 3 phase piles for the purposes of triggering the special phases. Where a discard lead to a choice of piles I used a dice to determine it randomly.
2) Action Phase:
- I removed Important Events from the game completely and took out the Important Events card from the neutral actions. Therefore the only uses for faith were for preventing revolts or blessing an expedition.
- AI baron markers were placed on the mercenary draft track as per normal and when the draft was triggered the AI baron in his turn always takes the highest merc card available to him but only 1 card.
- Battles. The AI baron starts with the usual 100 + 3 x 50 regular armies but no mercs or nobles. Everytime an AI baron city is attacked the AI baron defends with all his armies available plus the city's intrinsic strength. Casualties are assigned against the city first and then the AI armies starting with mercs. If the casualties inflicted on a merc card is equal to or greater than the merc strength then the card is lost immediately.
- Assembly. Only the top assembly card is 'voted' on at a time. The player can pay 8 votes to gain control of that card or 4 votes to have it discarded so the next assembly card can be voted on.
3) Upkeep phase:
- At the start of the upkeep phase before checking for victory, 1 unrazed city is drawn at random from the fate deck and that city (whether player or neutral) falls under the AI baron's control (if it was already an AI city then nothing happens). Only exception is if I have an army in that city hex in which case nothing happens.
- AI baron cities are not subject to revolt.
- Winning can only be achieved by influence and not by controlling over half the unrazed kingdom citites.
General rule - The AI baron always has sufficient gold to afford whatever it needs so effectively it doesn't have to pay for wages, always removes all casualty markers from his armies or a city as applicable and ignores collecting gold during taxation.