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Subject: That's a lot of bull. rss

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Lewis
United States
Overland Park
Kansas
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It's a snow day today, so I thought I'd take a few minutes and do a little academic exercise: If all the stars were aligned (in other words, theoretically), what is the most cattle I can acquire and hold on my farm at the end of the game?

Looking through the Occs and Minors, I see opportunities to increase and house my herd, but I decide to start simpler and look first at the family game.

One thing is clear: For one to four players, the first time cattle can be available is round 10. So, assuming cattle show up there and you have the chance to grab two in round 11 (to breed) and the rest in round 14, and you have adequate space, the most you can get to is 8.

But for 5 players, cattle is ready to roll in round one ("Pay 1 Food for 1 Cattle"). This was my focus. To reach the maximum, I assumed the other players did not interfere with my needed actions and accumulations (remember, this is theoretical). I also held myself to receiving no begging cards. Finally, I was not the starting player (began with 3 food).

If we just looked at straight cattle accessibility, 25 is the most that can enter the game (one each for all 14 rounds [food-for-cattle], 5 for the cattle space by round 14, and 6 for the harvests). To accommodate them with minimal resources and actions, I'll fence two pastures of two farmyard spaces each, one with two stables (16 capacity) and the other with one stable (8 capacity). My hut can hold the 25th. So that was the target I set.

Here was my result:

Round 1: 4W(4), food-for-cattle (f->c)
Round 2: Build Stables(2), f->c
Round 3: 3W(9), f->c
Round 4: Fences(6), Fishing(4f)

Harvest: My fish feed my 2 people (the only two I will have the entire game), and my cattle breed to 4. My first cattle was in my hut, but then I had space for 2 more in my stables. I fenced those for a holding pen and moved my hut animal there. Since I didn't take a cattle in round 4, the highest I can reach by game end is now 24.

Round 5: Storehouse(5f), f->c
Round 6: Build Stable, f->c
Round 7: Traveling Players(7f), f->c

Harvest: My third and final stable is outside of but adjacent to my pasture. Cattle breed to 8. Food count after feeding is 5.

Round 8: 3W(15), f->c
Round 9: Fishing(5f), f->c

Harvest: The wood is more than enough to fence my second pasture next round. I feed and still had 4 food left. Cattle count 11 after breeding.

Round 10: Fences(5), f->c
Round 11: Storehouse(6f), f->c

Harvest: I'm done with needing wood as I fence two more farmyard spaces including the third stable. Food count still holds at 4, and 14 cattle almost fill my first pasture.

Round 12: Traveling Players(5f), f->c
Round 13: Fishing(4f), f->c

Harvest: Food ends at 7, enough to get through the next and last harvest without having to take more. Cattle number 17.

Round 14: Cattle(5), f->c

Harvest: I feed and have two excess. Cattle breed to 24, completely filling my two pastures.

So I miss the maximum possible by just one. I don't see how to get around that miss, but if you do, or if you see any errors, let me know.

It was a fun mental exercise, however impractical.
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Nate Johnson
United States
Vernon Hills
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dlewis2 wrote:

One thing is clear: For one to four players, the first time cattle can be available is round 10.


I am overcome by the urge to be pedantic. I am seeking treatment.

In the meantime . . .
Other ways to get cattle before Round 10 with fewer than 5 players:
Cattle Market (E60)
trade 1 sheep for 1 cattle (pass left)
Farmer (E160)
each fencing after the next gains 1 cattle
Clay Seller (E186)
trade 4 clay for 1 cattle
Cattle Whisperer (E201)
cattle in round +5 and +9
Stockman (E213)
2nd Stable = 1 free cattle
Cattle Breeder (K295)
receive 1 cattle
Sheep Farmer (K297)
exchange 3 sheep for 1 cattle
Veterinarian (K304)
minor chance of 1 cattle throughout the game
Animal Breeder (K307)
Whenever you fence unused spaces to create at least one new pasture, you can buy a pair of animals: 2 sheep for 1 food, 2 wild boar for 2 food, or 2 cattle for 3 food.
Animal Trainer (K342)
Whenever you take food from a “Traveling players” space, you may immediately use it to buy animals: Pay 2 food for each sheep or wild boar and 3 food for each cattle.


Ah. I feel much better.
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Lewis
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Limey Sponge wrote:
dlewis2 wrote:

One thing is clear: For one to four players, the first time cattle can be available is round 10.


I am overcome by the urge to be pedantic. I am seeking treatment.



That's okay, Nate . . . pedantry can be a good thing.

I saw a few of these cards, but thought the exercise would lead to a severe headache, and that's no fun on a snow day. So I thought I'd begin with the family game, which doesn't include minors or occs. One day I might delve deeper into the total answer.

But your list helps -- I appreciate it!
 
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Kasper Baack
Netherlands
Enschede
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I made it to 17 in practice. Milking stool gave some nice bonus pts.
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Lewis
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Kasper wrote:
I made it to 17 in practice. Milking stool gave some nice bonus pts.


That's impressive!
 
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Philip Thomas
United Kingdom
London
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Limey Sponge wrote:
dlewis2 wrote:

One thing is clear: For one to four players, the first time cattle can be available is round 10.


I am overcome by the urge to be pedantic. I am seeking treatment.

In the meantime . . .
Other ways to get cattle before Round 10 with fewer than 5 players:
Cattle Market (E60)
trade 1 sheep for 1 cattle (pass left)
Farmer (E160)
each fencing after the next gains 1 cattle
Clay Seller (E186)
trade 4 clay for 1 cattle
Cattle Whisperer (E201)
cattle in round +5 and +9
Stockman (E213)
2nd Stable = 1 free cattle
Cattle Breeder (K295)
receive 1 cattle
Sheep Farmer (K297)
exchange 3 sheep for 1 cattle
Veterinarian (K304)
minor chance of 1 cattle throughout the game
Animal Breeder (K307)
Whenever you fence unused spaces to create at least one new pasture, you can buy a pair of animals: 2 sheep for 1 food, 2 wild boar for 2 food, or 2 cattle for 3 food.
Animal Trainer (K342)
Whenever you take food from a “Traveling players” space, you may immediately use it to buy animals: Pay 2 food for each sheep or wild boar and 3 food for each cattle.


Ah. I feel much better.


Unfortunately you missed the previous sentence of the original poster- which said he was just considering the family game...meeple
 
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