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Subject: broken because of scoring? rss

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Jonathan Kandell
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One thing I don't get about this little game: the scoring of the cards bears no relation to the strength of the card. Am I missing something?


Card, #Beats, Pts
4, 6, 1
5, 5, 2
6, 4, 2
7, 4, 2
8, 4, 3
9, 4, 3
10, 5, 3
11, 5, 3
12, 6, 3
13, 6, 3
16, 6, 4
 
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John Farrell
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If you were expecting symmetry, you've missed out :-). But I like that you're motivated to play the 16 because it's worth big points, and the other player knows that and is motivated to play the 4 so you can't score them.
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Jonathan Kandell
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I am trying to see where you're going, but help me see it....
I understand that things don't have to be symmetrical, but shouldn't the value of each card bear some relation to its power? Things get even more peculiar if you compare the point value of each card to the average point value of the cards it can capture:

Card, Pt value, Avg Pts it can capture
4, 1, 3.2
5, 2, 2.8
6, 2, 2.5
7, 2, 2.3
8, 3, 1.8
9, 3, 2.3
10, 3, 2.4
11, 3, 2.6
12, 3, 2.7
13, 3, 2.8
16, 4, 2.5

So, e.g. the 8 gets 3 points even though it only captures 1.8 pts, same as the 13 which captures 2.8 pts! The 5, which also captures 2.8 pts worth of cards, only earns 2 pts. Etc.

There seems to be an almost random connection. So how does one plan any kind of strategy?
 
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John Farrell
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jkandell wrote:
So how does one plan any kind of strategy?


You start by knowing everything your opponent knows, and then being trickier than him. If you have the 16, I suspect you really want to score it. So if I have the 4 and the 12 and you have the 7 and the 16, my guess is that you will try to play the 16 to beat the 12... so I play the 4 and you miss out. Or maybe you know I could figure that out, so you play the 7 to beat the 4 and discover that I played the 12 because I figured you'd do that. The points are not related to power at all, they introduce new asymmetry and motivations.

If you're smart enough, it's a kinda random game, but there are a lot of things to keep in your head so maybe many people aren't smart enough. I know I do well at it. What do you expect for 3 bucks and 5 grams? Another great game in this style is Xe Queo!.
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Jonathan Kandell
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Friendless wrote:
jkandell wrote:
So how does one plan any kind of strategy?

The points are not related to power at all, they introduce new asymmetry and motivations....
If you're smart enough, it's a kinda random game, but there are a lot of things to keep in your head so maybe many people aren't smart enough. I know I do well at it. What do you expect for 3 bucks and 5 grams? Another great game in this style is Xe Queo!.


Hey, Xe Queo is one of my few "9" games; I even posted a "house rule variation" to flush out more game and extend the rounds. (http://boardgamegeek.com/article/2743320#2743320).

I hear you on the "lot of things to keep in your head" with Pico. It works really well as solitaire for that reason. Sure there's no bluff, but there's enough in your head to keep your mind busy.

Regarding the scoring, I suppose if I keep in mind that both players get to play the same hands then any point values, no matter how arbitrary, will work. It's just the topography of the land, so to speak. But my worry remains that without any rhyme or reason (look at that chart!), the scoring then becomes more of a "smoke screen" to bluffing and strategy rather than a "motivator". For want of a better word, the game loses some elegance compared to, e.g., Xe Queo. I wonder how game would change if the points of the most powerful cards were inversely related to the points they win.

I admit it's already a bit much for us to be discussing a game that only costs $3 and takes 5 minutes to play. But hey, it's BGG.
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