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Subject: Why can some cards marked "Coup Excuse" only be played during coup? rss

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The Grouch
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I have the 1985 West End Games edition. On the back page of the rules in the section marked "Component Summary" and the subsection marked "The Cards:" there's a list which reads in part:

- The following event cards may be played at any time:
...
Annual Street Festival
United Nations Condemns
...
- The following event cards may only be played during Coup"
...
General Strike
Dock Strike
Slum Riots
Demonstrators
Student Protest


All of the cards I've listed in the excerpt above are marked "Coup Excuse". For the "any time" cards this makes sense. Rule 27 states:

Starting a Coup

At the beginning of each turn, the "Coup Exuse/No Excuse" marker is fliiped to its "No Excuse" side. During the turn, it is flipped to the "Coup Excuse" side if any of the following happens:
- The Budget is defearted;
- The Minister seizes the Chamber of Deputies;
- Any player is successfully assassinated;
- A card which says "Coup Excuse" is played.
...
You can start a coup by:
- Playing an Event card which causes new counters to be placed on the map. This includes student mobs, rioters, strikers, demonstraters,...


To me the marking "Coup Excuse" on the aforementioned cards (which put red units, like student mobs, rioters, strikers, demonstraters on the board) is confusing - if those cards can only be played during a coup, how can they be played to cause a Coup Excuse? Is the "Components" section of the rules wrong (option A)?

On the other hand, because those cards place units on the board - starting a coup, incidentally - which would seem to imply that the "Components" section is correct and that those cards are incorrectly marked (option B).

A final alternative is that these cards actually work as both a Coup Excuse and to start the coup simultaneously, meaning that even if a player was not at his Headquarters and there was No Excuse for a coup, he could start one with one of these cards (option C).

So which is it?
 
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Neil Whyman
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Long time since I played this so take this with the same degree of caution that one would have before going to the bank!

I think it can be played to start a coup in the absence of any other excuse. I seem to recall that the coup excuse permits the Minster of Internal Security to take the option of concentrating his 4 units at the start of the coup. So in this way it differs from starting a coup by placing other new units on the board.

Better check that though. Anybody else care to comment?
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Børge N
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bill_andel wrote:

A final alternative is that these cards actually work as both a Coup Excuse and to start the coup simultaneously, meaning that even if a player was not at his Headquarters and there was No Excuse for a coup, he could start one with one of these cards (option C).

So which is it?


My group has always played by this alternative, as it clearly makes the most sense. The reasoning behind this is that "...may only be played during Coup" should be interpreted as "...may only be played during the Coup segment". (There is always a Coup segment in each turn, but not necessarily a Coup.)
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Philip Thomas
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Option C.

Those cards can be played to start a Coup. The units then appear on the board. If they are red units, the Minister of Internal Security can respond by sending all police units to one of the spaces the red units appeared in, a particularly effective move if he played the card! The player of the card(s) then takes the First Rebel card and the Coup begins. Note that non-rebels may not shoot during the first turn of the coup, so if the police aren't on the rebels side they could get beaten up (Or the police player could fire back, becoming a rebel, and then side with the President at the end of the coup).

Probably it could be clearer in the rules. The cards can also be played later on in the coup, and several cards can be played at once. I forget the procedure on who is First Rebel if two players try to start a coup at once.
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The Grouch
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What's interesting to me is that the other cards marked as "play only during coup" I did not list in my excerpt are "Bank Guards", "Christian Militia", "Helicopter" and "Home Defense" (or something like that - don't have game with me at the moment) are NOT marked as "Coup Excuse". So presumably you could play these during Coup phase to start a coup, but only if there were already an Excuse.
 
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Ze Masqued Cucumber
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Philip Thomas wrote:
Option C.

That's how we play as well.

Philip Thomas wrote:
I forget the procedure on who is First Rebel if two players try to start a coup at once.

As far as I know there's no procedure for such cases, so the quicker to "act" becomes the 1st Rebel (I don't think it has ever been a serious issue during our sessions).


bill_andel wrote:
What's interesting to me is that the other cards marked as "play only during coup" I did not list in my excerpt are "Bank Guards", "Christian Militia", "Helicopter" and "Home Defense" (or something like that - don't have game with me at the moment) are NOT marked as "Coup Excuse". So presumably you could play these during Coup phase to start a coup, but only if there were already an Excuse.

Yep.
 
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Roolz wrote:

Philip Thomas wrote:
I forget the procedure on who is First Rebel if two players try to start a coup at once.

As far as I know there's no procedure for such cases, so the quicker to "act" becomes the 1st Rebel (I don't think it has ever been a serious issue during our sessions).


There is no official rule on this, but in the few cases we have had a timing issue (like when two players have stated clearly they want to start a coup, even before the coup phase starts), we go clockwise around the table, starting from the President.
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Philip Thomas
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bill_andel wrote:
What's interesting to me is that the other cards marked as "play only during coup" I did not list in my excerpt are "Bank Guards", "Christian Militia", "Helicopter" and "Home Defense" (or something like that - don't have game with me at the moment) are NOT marked as "Coup Excuse". So presumably you could play these during Coup phase to start a coup, but only if there were already an Excuse.


Yes, thematically speaking that is because those are 'defensive, law and order' mobilisations, the middle classes rallying for hearth and home. As such they don't consitute the excuse for a Coup that strikers, rioters and demonstrators do. So the police don't get sent out to supress the right-wing forces, who incidentally are also armed, unlike the rabble (unless someone plays Farm Strike).

Of course, the right-wingers can side with the rebels against the President, just as the rabble can be pro-president, once the coup gets going. And if you control both, you can mix your rioters with your Christian militia and fight the enemy together.
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bestia immonda
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I also use option C, with the exception that there's no automatic Coup start, only a Coup Excuse.
 
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The Grouch
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It's worth noting that I've become more familiar with the rules since posting this question - can't imagine why whistle - and it turns out that *ANY* card which place new units on the board starts a coup. It's just that some have a built-in excuse and some don't.
 
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Danny Stevens
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So to summarise for cards that place units on the map.

They may only be played during the coup part of the turn.

If there is no coup in progress then
1) If there is no "Coup Excuse" only those marked "Coup Excuse" can be played
2) If there is a coup excuse then any of them can be played
In both cases a coup is started and the player playing the card(s) becomes first rebel.

If there is a coup in progress then any of the cards may be played to bring new units onto the map. During the rebel only turn the minister may move police to respond to red units that have been placed on the board without becoming a rebel.

Is that right?
 
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Simone Ferrari
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Danny from Tower wrote:

They may only be played during the coup part of the turn.

If there is no coup in progress then
1) If there is no "Coup Excuse" only those marked "Coup Excuse" can be played by a player who isn't in the HQ. A player in the HQ can play any cards.
2) If there is a coup excuse then any of them can be played
In both cases a coup is started and the player playing the card(s) becomes first rebel.

If there is a coup in progress then any of the cards may be played to bring new units onto the map, without making the player a rebel, even if he played the cards during the Rebel only turn. During the rebel only turn the minister may move police to respond to red units that have been placed on the board without becoming a rebel.


Fix'd!
 
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