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Subject: Identical number of turns per player rss

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Martin Matt
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In very tight games, sometimes a player wins the game playing the final tile and his direct opponent complains about the disadvantage of having taken one less turn than the winner. Indeed, players who act first often have the advantage of playing one more turn than any other(s) player(s).

To avoid this, we stated that at the end of the game, all players shall have played equal number of turns..
(Note: double turns are considered one turn as usual).

To accomplish this, we ruled the following:
At the beginning of the game, a number of tiles equal to the double of the number of players are randomly chosen and placed aside (remaining concealed from all players) - this tiles comprise the "extra tile reserve". Players must not pick up tiles from the "extra reserve" while any tile is available in the normal tile reserve. Once the normal reserve is vacant, the game proceeds normally with players picking up tiles from the extra tile reserve.
The game ends when the player on the right of the starting player ends his first turn in which he has picked up from the extra reserve tile.


Exs: In a 4-player game, 8 tiles must be randomly picked up to form the extra tile reserve.
Player A is the first player to pick up a tile (from the normal tile reserve), player B takes the second turn, player C takes the third turn and player D follows.
Case a - player B picks up the last tile from the normal reserve and play it. Then player C should take is turn picking up a tile from the extra reserve. Then player D takes his turn and the game ends.
Case b - player D picks up the last tile from the normal reserve, plays it and ends his turn. The game proceeds until player D ends his next turn.
Case c - player D picks up the last tile from the normal reserve and plays it where he has a builder. So he picks up another tile (now from the extra reserve) and ends his turn. The game is ended !
 
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brian
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I don't usually get involved in variant discussions because everyone has the right to play how they want. I just feel compelled to once again speak against the necessity of having drawn equal tiles / have equal turns.

1) Equal tiles does not = equal scoring opportunities.
2) A player who might lose with less turns did not play well enough on defense and so canimprove upon play on his own (without the additional tile).
3) The Builder (if you use that expansion) tears the idea all apart. Equal turns mean nothing if one player manages to place a significant number of more tiles than other players. Which again is a consequence of better play.

Ok, I'll back away now. Good luck with your variant!
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Gláucio Reis
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
1) Equal tiles does not = equal scoring opportunities.

Correct. The game certainly has enough randomness and player interaction to sustain your statement. But that's not the point. There is no disadvantage for going first, and one extra turn is always good. We can argue on how much of an advantage that is, but it surely exists.

Quote:
2) A player who might lose with less turns did not play well enough on defense and so canimprove upon play on his own (without the additional tile).

Again, that's not the point.

Quote:
3) The Builder (if you use that expansion) tears the idea all apart. Equal turns mean nothing if one player manages to place a significant number of more tiles than other players. Which again is a consequence of better play.

You are still missing the point. I believe it is fine for the OP if you play more tiles as a consequence of better play, but not if that happens for mere seating order. In other words, it's the number of turns that matters, not the number of tiles. And the sole reason for having a tile reserve is the builder. Otherwise, you might just remove the proper number of tiles from the game before it starts.

Personally, I don't feel the need for such a variant, but that is probably because I play Carcassonne always with family and non-gamers. Interestingly, though, at least as an indication that the issue is real, in Carcassonne: The Discovery there is an optional rule to remove a number of tiles, so that everyone has the same number of turns.
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brian
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GSReis wrote:
ColtsFan76 wrote:
1) Equal tiles does not = equal scoring opportunities.

Correct. The game certainly has enough randomness and player interaction to sustain your statement. But that's not the point. There is no disadvantage for going first, and one extra turn is always good. We can argue on how much of an advantage that is, but it surely exists.

If this were true then the game winner would always come from the pool of players that had X turns. The loser would always come from the pool that had X-1 turns. If you can gatehr data that supports that, then you have a case.

But I can guarantee you seat order has no impact in the games I have played.

Furthermore, there is no guarantee that another tile will score you anything. Most people are looking to close a city and get only road tiles or vice versa. So maybe the last tile continues a feature that grants you an additional road or an extensio to a city that gives you another point. We struggle to place the last couple pieces anyway and look to just maximize our point padding. So a secondary back-up to this is showing me that games are decided by a few points when a typical game has well over 100 points or even more depending on the number of players.
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Gláucio Reis
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You quoted me, but it seems you didn't read what you quoted, so let me repeat: The game certainly has enough randomness and player interaction to sustain your statement. Got it? And it's pretty obvious that better play more than compensates for the small disadvantage of having one turn less. I'm not arguing with you. The point is that there is a disadvantage, no matter how tiny it may be.
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brian
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GSReis wrote:
You quoted me, but it seems you didn't read what you quoted, so let me repeat: The game certainly has enough randomness and player interaction to sustain your statement. Got it? And it's pretty obvious that better play more than compensates for the small disadvantage of having one turn less. I'm not arguing with you. The point is that there is a disadvantage, no matter how tiny it may be.

OK. Let me re-quote what you said:

Quote:
There is no disadvantage for going first, and one extra turn is always good. We can argue on how much of an advantage that is, but it surely exists.

1) There is no proof that an "extra turn is always good." It is almost never bad (as it typically can't hurt you - but it might be an extremely rare case that you are forced to place it in a position that helps your opponents due to placement restrictions - I have seen it twice but not during the end game - so it could hurt you), but not always good. It may do absolutely nothing for you. That was my point, you got that?

2) There may be an advantage in certain cases. But not always. It may give you zero advantage. You see?

So that's the point. Got it?
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Gláucio Reis
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One extra turn is always good in the sense that it is an extra opportunity, not that you will always be able to benefit from it. Given that each turn you get a random tile draw, that should be painfully obvious. But, yeah, you're probably right and Leo Colovini is just stupid for adding a rule to deal with that perceived advantage. shake
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brian
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GSReis wrote:
But, yeah, you're probably right and Leo Colovini is just stupid for adding a rule to deal with that perceived advantage. shake

By that logic you could say KJW is an idiot for overlooking the perceived advantage in the original game and ALL subsequent iterations of the game. In fact, he is so foolish as to have ignored it in every single expansion as well.

It might be that Colovini HAD to change it because he jacked up the basic concept of leaving meeples in place untii scored. This is an opinion for sure: Discovery is the worst of the Carcassonne off-shoots. So if the shoe fits...
 
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Carl Olson
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ColtsFan76 wrote:
GSReis wrote:
But, yeah, you're probably right and Leo Colovini is just stupid for adding a rule to deal with that perceived advantage. shake

By that logic you could say KJW is an idiot for overlooking the perceived advantage in the original game and ALL subsequent iterations of the game. In fact, he is so foolish as to have ignored it in every single expansion as well.

It might be that Colovini HAD to change it because he jacked up the basic concept of leaving meeples in place untii scored. This is an opinion for sure: Discovery is the worst of the Carcassonne off-shoots. So if the shoe fits...


Oh come on, guys. Let it go. An extra tile clearly has the "potential" to score an extra point or more. As other threads have made clear, it seems to not make enough of a difference that people care, even in tournament play. If you want equal turns, do it. Why is this even an issue, let alone a public one?
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Gláucio Reis
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carlj wrote:
An extra tile clearly has the "potential" to score an extra point or more. As other threads have made clear, it seems to not make enough of a difference that people care, even in tournament play. If you want equal turns, do it. Why is this even an issue, let alone a public one?

You summarized it pretty well. I still had a word or two to say, but you are correct that this is a non-issue. I'm probably trying too hard to make one person understand that, and it's clearly not worth the effort. I will stop here.
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Martin Matt
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Hello, Brian
You wrote:
Quote:
I don't usually get involved in variant discussions (...)
Good luck with your variant!


I felt very honoured with your exceptional involvement in variant discussions and I sincerily thank you for the good luck wish.

Although I do not agree with your objections (and I subscribe Glaucio's comments to them), I admit that my (our) variant is not "popular".
I am not really concerned about this but surprised since ...
a) ... our proposal is quite simple and does not affect the "mechanics" of the game nor the strategy of play... just a few tiles placed aside...
b) ... I realise that my group is too much competitive...

I recognize it is reasonable to accept that the "one more turn" occurrence is just one more element of luck among a lot of them throughout the game. Fine!
We dislike such option (especially when it is easy to be avoided) but it´s our problem indeed! If nobody cares about it, our proposal should be ignored.
It´s just a matter of taste! (and I realise we have a bad taste, but it´s ok!).
 
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norman rule
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MattMartin wrote:
The game ends when the player on the right of the starting player ends his first turn in which he has picked up from the extra reserve tile.


At the risk of stirring things up, I don't think our group would look kindly on leaving any tiles unplayed.

If you desperately need a certain tile, and you KNOW it still hasn't been played, you want every opportunity for it to come in to play. We've had games where the last tile drawn is a cathedral, which completely changed the leader board.

Obviously, this is more of an issue when the last tiles are the more "unusual" tiles from the various sets, but we've had players wail "I just need a curve!" on their last draw. Knowing that any "desperately needed" tile was still in the bag at end game would cause a great deal of frustration.

And just an observation about 1st player advantage: I checked out stats (yeah, we're geeky that way.... we've recorded win/loss for every game played at our house for over a year) and one player has won 67% of the Carcassonne games we've played. We average about one game every two weeks. We do a "meeple drop" for start player, so it's reasonably unbiased, and most of our games are 5-6 player. If there's a start player advantage, we aren't seeing it.

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Martin Matt
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Norman,
I don´t want to insist in my proposal neither convince you (neither anyone else) about it. Clearly our rule will not result in your group for the reason you've mentioned. I will not defend our variant anymore (although we prefer it). So ignore it, please.

Nevertheless, let me say some words about your comments that could be said independently of the variant I posted:

Quote:
If you desperately need a certain tile, and you KNOW it still hasn't been played, you want every opportunity for it to come in to play.


It´s true! However, you cannot be sure you take it. Your opponents have identical chance to pick it up instead of you, what should be bad to you (or not). You may insist that the "opportunity to get it" is enough to you. Ok, I do not discuss that. Our group accept such possibility like a "neutral" pick up, so that´s not a problem for us. Different feelings different rules. No problem!

Quote:
(...) one player has won 67% of the Carcassonne games we've played.(...) If there's a start player advantage, we aren't seeing it.

Your statistic only shows that the player who has won 67% of the games is clearly the best player. It´s expected the best player wins more times than any other player.

A much more complex analysis would be required (and I am not sure it can reveal the tiny advantage of taking one more turn). A very simple approach should be comparing, for each player, the ratio win/loss in games in which he’s played "one more turn" than at least one opponent (not only the starting player) with the ratio win/loss in games in which he’s played "one less turn" than at least one opponent ... (Have you recorded this?)
I guess nobody has made it yet ... what for anyway ?!?
Playing a lot of games allows to define more accurately "the best" player, so who plays many games don´t care about such tiny advantage of taking one more turn. (I do understand this).
Since we don´t play so many games as you do, we cannot wait for the statistic "verdict" on the best player. So each game is like a "verdict" for us and we feel that winning with the "additional turn" is not fair. (The second in the ranking picks up an "additional" tile, plays and eventually wins. This has occurred twice with our group! ).

It seems to us like to win having the advantage (say) of scoring 10 points (instead of 9) for completing a cloister when you are the starting player. Surely this can decide a game - not often indeed - but considering a lot of games with random starting players and players with different skills, the overall result would be a tiny advantage that could be ignored since all players get this advantage approximately the same number of times. So this rule could be considered "unfair" while playing a few times although it can be considered "fair" when playing a lot of times. This is our point.
However, this seems that is not a problem to anybody else! So no problem at all!

Thanks for your comment.

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ColtsFan76 wrote:
GSReis wrote:
ColtsFan76 wrote:
1) Equal tiles does not = equal scoring opportunities.

Correct. The game certainly has enough randomness and player interaction to sustain your statement. But that's not the point. There is no disadvantage for going first, and one extra turn is always good. We can argue on how much of an advantage that is, but it surely exists.

If this were true then the game winner would always come from the pool of players that had X turns. The loser would always come from the pool that had X-1 turns. If you can gatehr data that supports that, then you have a case.
Well, a correlation that those with X-1 turns lose more often to those with X turns would be good enough for me.
 
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