Recommend
5 
 Thumb up
 Hide
28 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

Agricola» Forums » General

Subject: "Official 2-player fix...." rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: agricola [+] [View All]
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Ponton wrote:
[COLOR=#000080]Official 2-player fix
As pointed out already by another user, the official fix is to add the 3-player family game action card "take two different building materials" at the start of the game. I've found, it not only fixes the expansion 2-player game, but also the basegame which suffered from extreme denial strategies.[/BGCOLOR]


http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/487052/the-design-is-gre...

Apparently, according to this, there is an 'Official 2-player fix' which is recommended for using in Farmers on the Moor and also the base game. Now, I can't find any reference to this in the base game's forum so I thought I'd bring it to prominence...

I can obviously see the advantages of alleviating extreme denial strategies in 2-player Agricola, although I personally, have not really been exposed to this type of play. So.... while I hadn't considered this before for the 2-player 'full game', I do think it would have some merit in the 3-player 'full game' which has always felt the most tight of all. (In this case it would replace the 'Choose one of any resource' action card which in imho is extremely poor)

2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Hanno Girke
Germany
Berne
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Jambo wrote:
I do think it would have some merit in the 3-player 'full game' which has always felt the most tight of all. (In this case it would replace the 'Choose one of any resource' action card which in imho is extremely poor)


The "Choose any one resource" action already is a fix; it has replaced the card "Take exactly 1 stone, not accumulating".
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hanno wrote:
The "Choose any one resource" action already is a fix; it has replaced the card "Take exactly 1 stone, not accumulating".


Interesting. Except on very rare circumstances, I always hate using an action to claim only a single resource. It feels like such a waste. Obviously this particular 'fix' doesn't change this impression.

I wonder, why would Uwe's proposed fix for 2-player elect to add an action card that is twice as good as the one used in the 3-player game?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tor Sverre Lund
Norway
Trondheim
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Jambo wrote:
I wonder, why would Uwe's proposed fix for 2-player elect to add an action card that is twice as good as the one used in the 3-player game?
'cause it's twice as hard to block someone in 3p? Basicly it's not a valid strategy at all most of the time. yes, you might hinder one player, but you're leaving another player free to do whatever in addition to probably making a sub-optimal move for yourself.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls

Lacombe
Louisiana
msg tools
badge
Suddenly a shot rang out! A door slammed. The maid screamed. Suddenly a pirate ship appeared on the horizon! While millions of people were starving, the king lived in luxury. Meanwhile, on a small farm in Kansas, a boy was growing up.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Rather than adding a new card, we've been using the variant of replacing the non-family "Day Laborer" space with the Family game version of the same space: "Take 1 food and 1 Building Resource of your choice" rather than "Take 2 food".

It's obviously not official, but it's been working very well for us.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Gawain wrote:
'cause it's twice as hard to block someone in 3p? Basicly it's not a valid strategy at all most of the time. yes, you might hinder one player, but you're leaving another player free to do whatever in addition to probably making a sub-optimal move for yourself.


But that doesn't explain why one couldn't have simply added the 'Choose a single resource of your choice' action card to the 2-player? The query was regarding the choice of the action card and why they chose one that was twice as good at collecting resources than the comparative action card used in the 3-player game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Tannhauser
United States
San Diego
California
flag msg tools
ya gotta bunny/duck it in your head
badge
"I looked at my hands, I understood that one fine day, one fine evening to be precise, they would no longer be hands but some other awful thing." —Jack Kerouac
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't get this at all.

I've played 30+ two-player games with my wife, knock-down/drag-out affairs where we actively try to torpedo each other's efforts. The games are always tense, and very close. She won our last game by two points. (Which was typical, both in the beating and the closeness.)

Never have I felt two-player needed any kind of fix.


9 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alex Chen
United States
Colorado
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
It's funny you should mention this; this is actually a house rule that I regularly use for 3-p games. Most of my games are 3-p and while it's very fun, I feel it has definite problems in comparison to 4-p.

1. There isn't enough reed, making cards like the Landing Net brutal, swingy, and unfun.

2. Stone is a bit tight. This isn't too much of a problem but it does make baking pretty bad in general.

3. There isn't enough food. 4-p gets Traveling Players and 2-p gets a ton of animals lying around. 3-p gets nothing in that respect. Also because baking sucks in 3-p, all 3 players tend to try to get Cooking Hearths and the result can be pretty brutal.

4. And this is the big one: the third player in 3-p gets hosed. This is because there are only two good spots on the board in the first round of 3p: Occupation and 3W. After that the options suck: plowing a field and taking 1G are both way worse than 3W and 1 Occupation. Moreover if player 2 decides not to take SP then player 3 is forced to take it. At that point if he doesn't have a free playable minor he is pretty much toast.

Adding "Take two of any resource" actually fixes all of these problems.

1. There is now a lot more reed in the game. Landing Net is still super strong, but its use is less obnoxious. Now, instead of taking 1 reed every round to screw your opponents, you take the any two resources every round to get a reed, stone and 1 food.

2. Early stone is now almost as easy to get as it is in 4-p, which makes baking better.

3. Because baking is better, there is usually more food in the game.

4. Now, the third player has a viable action to take with his first move. It's still not as good as 3W or 1occ, but it's definitely better than 2W, PF, or take grain. It also enables him to take SP easier, since he can take the resources he needs with his first action.

My one caveat is again to decide how to deal with cards like Resource Seller, which get much stronger when the card is in play.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike T
United States
Maryland
flag msg tools
Avatar
I don't know about FotM, but I don't think the 2 player base game needs fixing. Yes, resource blocking is brutal, but I don't see anything wrong with that.

However, I do agree with Alex about the 3 player game.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Josh Martin
Canada
Mississauga
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This "official fix" sounds interesting, but can we actually get an official weigh in on it? This thread just links to another thread on the same topic, but neither one has an official ruling by Hanno or Uwe.

Also, I'm surprised to hear that 2P needs a "fix". After about 150 plays, many of them 2P and 3P, I've never really had any problems with 2P. That said, I certaintly wouldn't mind an additional action card to open things up- this is a game where I always find myself wishing I could enjoy my farm more, but by the time it looks good and is efficient, the game is essentially over, so adding more resources/options would make farming life a bit easier in the early goings.

I'm in agreement with an earlier post about the 3P game- the 3rd player in the first round certainly gets hosed, not to say that they can't win, but they don't have the options available to them in a 2P, 4P, and 5P game.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jim Rogenski
United States
Marietta
Ohio
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I know this may be heretical, but in our house we routinely play 2 player games with 3 player cards. We even play a 4 player game with 5 player cards! This has been the best approach to making the competition for resources a little less cutthroat. Any other variation that we have tried has made the game too easy and therefore boring. This variation makes the game slightly easier but it still retains the intensity of the normal game. We are still struggling to get that "one last thing" done by the end of round 14. Scores run in the mid 40's with the winner topping 50 usually. But no one feels that it was too easy because of the abundance of resources.

We don't much care for whether it is an "official" variation or not. It works for us and our gaming group.
4 
 Thumb up
0.05
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeff Suchard
United States
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
The "2-player fix" we use at my house is adding the accumulating 1 Wood card from the 4-player game.

I saw this on some other thread and have used it ever since. It opens things up a bit, although maybe not as much as taking any resource of your choice. End scores tend to be higher for both players by 5-6 points, maybe more, since I haven't really kept close track of it. But it makes the game seem more 'constructive', rather than 'cut-throat'. That's a good thing, since the 2nd player is usually my wife.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jack Smith
United Kingdom
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmb
Its not needed at all unless you want the 2P less competitive. That will suit some and not others.

This is the sort of game you can tweak forever but never get the right balance as what is balanced for one group is not for another.

I'm happy to play the game just as it is, warts and all.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike T
United States
Maryland
flag msg tools
Avatar
jsuchard wrote:
The "2-player fix" we use at my house is adding the accumulating 1 Wood card from the 4-player game.

I saw this on some other thread and have used it ever since. It opens things up a bit, although maybe not as much as taking any resource of your choice. End scores tend to be higher for both players by 5-6 points, maybe more, since I haven't really kept close track of it. But it makes the game seem more 'constructive', rather than 'cut-throat'. That's a good thing, since the 2nd player is usually my wife.


I'm not going to tell you you are wrong: games are for players, and "official" doesn't mean much if it works for you. Adding more wood, though, wouldn't make the 2 player game less cutthroat for me, since Reed and Clay are more easily blockable in the first place. I think the best way to play "non-cutthroat" two player games is to, well, play non-cutthroat two player games. Blocking is a choice.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Grzegorz Kobiela
Germany
Hanover
Lower Saxony
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Editor at Lookout Games
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hm, I'm wondering, why you, Mike, aren't happy about the fix. Haven't you been the guy who claimed clay denial is a sure game winner in 2-player? The additional action card fixes all common denial problems. It also fixes the lack of stone in the early game. I don't see why this is less cut-throat.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike T
United States
Maryland
flag msg tools
Avatar
Ponton wrote:
Hm, I'm wondering, why you, Mike, aren't happy about the fix. Haven't you been the guy who claimed clay denial is a sure game winner in 2-player? The additional action card fixes all common denial problems. It also fixes the lack of stone in the early game. I don't see why this is less cut-throat.


I'm not unhappy with the fix, I think no fix is needed. There's a difference.

I don't think clay denial is a "sure game winner," I think it's an important and often overlooked strategic consideration.

I also didn't accuse any proposed variants of being "less cut-throat," though I do think adding the "Take 2 Different Resources" would reduce player interaction.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Grzegorz Kobiela
Germany
Hanover
Lower Saxony
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Editor at Lookout Games
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
smcmike wrote:
I also didn't accuse any proposed variants of being "less cut-throat," though I do think adding the "Take 2 Different Resources" would reduce player interaction.


Oh, I'm sorry, this part wasn't referrring to any of your posts.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The lack of stone in the early game in 2-player does cut out at lot of potential strategies, and also rules out baking with the stone oven.

One thing not considered with the proposed fix for 2-player (and for 3-player) is the potential interaction with the 'Through the Seasons' expansion. Thinking about it, we always play with this expansion and it's probably why I haven't really noticed any issue with 2-player before. Autumn's ability of 'one less resource needed for building a major improvement' if often how we make up for lack of early clay or stone.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mike T
United States
Maryland
flag msg tools
Avatar
Now that I've thought about it more, I am willing to accuse the "fix" of making the game less cutthroat. The fun part of the 2 player game for me is the extremely high level of player interaction. Adding more spaces, and particularly spaces with static resources, reduces interaction and makes the game less demanding.

4 
 Thumb up
0.25
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tibs
United States
Amherst
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I've never had a problem with the 2p game as is, but the idea of extreme resource denial strikes me as an un-fun way to win: nobody has a farm they're really proud of. Clay and Stone Ovens haven't been an issue either, really.

I will try this "fix" a few times, because I'm curious. If it's successful, maybe I'll print out a 2p action card laugh
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Daniel Harms
United States
Seattle
Washington
flag msg tools
You "fix" resource blocking by taking the First Player action.

Tada!
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Mikula
United States
Washington
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Being something of a pedant when it comes to rules, I'd love to see a link to where this "official" statement was made. But at first blush it seems like it would solve my problems with the two player game.

To be fair, all of my two player games have been against my wife, so we may have some groupthink going on, but I've consistently noticed that the first person to get a fireplace has a huge advantage. (Especially if that person gets to take a pile of sheep, but we rarely let that happen anymore!) Still, animals are relatively abundant in the 2p game to the point that baking is a far inferior way of feeding--even if you have good improvements for it. Compound that with the fact that you may not be able to get stone until round 7, and vying for that first fireplace becomes a no brainer. And, of course, clay denial is always a viciously effective strategy.

I think people are confusing the idea of a game being cutthroat with being interesting. Games with my wife are always cutthroat, but when they follow nearly the same path every time they quickly become less fun. With stone available from the start and clay less blockable, suddenly all sorts of strategies open up in the early game.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
HandEyeProtege wrote:
Being something of a pedant when it comes to rules, I'd love to see a link to where this "official" statement was made. But at first blush it seems like it would solve my problems with the two player game.

To be fair, all of my two player games have been against my wife, so we may have some groupthink going on, but I've consistently noticed that the first person to get a fireplace has a huge advantage. (Especially if that person gets to take a pile of sheep, but we rarely let that happen anymore!) Still, animals are relatively abundant in the 2p game to the point that baking is a far inferior way of feeding--even if you have good improvements for it. Compound that with the fact that you may not be able to get stone until round 7, and vying for that first fireplace becomes a no brainer. And, of course, clay denial is always a viciously effective strategy.

I think people are confusing the idea of a game being cutthroat with being interesting. Games with my wife are always cutthroat, but when they follow nearly the same path every time they quickly become less fun. With stone available from the start and clay less blockable, suddenly all sorts of strategies open up in the early game.


I agree with this totally.

We've also found baking bread to be an far inferior way of feeding than cooking animals in 2-player. The fact that stone doesn't appear until round 7 at the earliest means most of the minor improvements requiring stone are considered 'bad draws', and it also means stone major improvements have less impact on the game, like for instance the stone oven.

Like I said before, perhaps the reason I haven't noticed this as much is because of the Through the Seasons add-on in which the Autumn action space allows Major improvements to be built for one less resource (i.e. Stone!).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tibs
United States
Amherst
Massachusetts
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't like Through the Seasons with Farmers of the Moor. It's strange that you don't have to heat your house any more in the winter than the summer. Actually I don't like it in general. I was thinking of making a deck-driven version of Seasons that changed your fuel and food requirements, as well as randomly adding the effects from the Seasons card.

So, I've played the 2p nonstop. It is great. You can build an oven early if you want to, and it's harder to block resources to other players (which is a sad unfolding of a 2p game).

Anyway, here are a couple action cards:


The full version


The family version

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jamie Pollock
Scotland
Edinburgh
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Interested to hear that you didn't like Through the Seasons. I'm thinking that if were to use this 'fix' I might not need to use Through the Seasons again! The only reason we were using it was for the variable resource amounts season to season and the special Autumn ability of reducing the resource requirement for a major improvement. Both Summer and Winter's action aren't particularly good.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.