Andrew Wood
United Kingdom
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As the subject suggests which one is better out of the peat charcoal kiln or the foresters lodge.

I'm going to argue that it perhaps depends on if you are going down the baking route or the animal route, but would value others insight.

The costs: foresters lodge costs more 2 wood and 1 clay so requires 3 actions to get while the peat charcoal kiln costs just 1 stone which only requires 1 action.
(I'm assuming level 1/2 complexity here as level 3 in 2/3 player mode makes stone more difficult to get early on)

The benefits: foresters lodge gives you potentially 10 wood assuming you get a horse and turn all your forests into wood. (substitute 1 point per 2 wood you don't want for bonus points)
The peat charcoal kiln gives you potentially 6 fuel assuming you get a horse and turn all your moors in fuel. (substitute 1 point per 2 fuel you don't want for bonus points)
In most cases 6 fuel is worth 6 wood, as you need to heat your house and while you can get other improvements to help you, if you can get a total of 15 fuel from your 5 moors then you are not going to have heating problems during the game assuming you renovate at some point as well as grow your house.

If you are going down the animal strategy then the foresters lodge is more valued as it gives you more wood for fences

However, if you are going down the baking route, then you might want to slash and burn some of those forests into fields, you don't need wood for fences but of course still need fuel for heating your house.

Comments most welcome,
 
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Allen Hoffmann
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I think it is situational depending on which minors you pull.

if you pull "home wood" then the lodge is clearly superior. 5 1pt squares that also work as stables?? sign me up!

it is also a way to "do more" with less actions. those squares don't need to be dealt with, they are already worth 1pt each. as much as a 3-5th field or a 2nd-4th 1square pasture.

however that can limit your expansion if you don't plan accordingly.

on the other hand, peat kiln is fantastic if you have peat hut, peat moss, etc or other ways to easily spend the surplus fuel
 
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Geoff Burkman
United States
Kettering
Ohio
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I agree with Allen that it's highly situational. So far, I've found that both Majors are typically lessened in value by the time one can grab them, simply because prior special actions have pruned away one or more of the relevant Forest/Moor tiles. Extra card help is a definite plus. It could be, though, that my crew and I haven't mastered the intricacies of taking special actions yet.
 
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Merric Blackman
Australia
Waubra
Victoria
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The Peat-Charcoal Kiln is something I've taken in almost every game I've played so far. It's superbly easy to take: Day Laborer and then Major Improvement will give it to you. Take a horse second turn (keep it in your house) and then your moors give you 5 fuel each rather than 3 - and fuel is generally in very short supply in the game.

Once you add in the minor improvement cards, they become a lot more situational. Consider the Thicket, which places two more forest tiles on the board - suddenly, the Forester's Lodge becomes one of the most powerful minor improvements! (Certainly in the game where that occured, I never worried about wood!)

Cheers,
Merric
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Allen Hoffmann
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Both of them provide specific bonuses that must be leveraged properly.

The peat charcoal kiln provides early fuel advantage. however if you are coasting on that rather than using it to aggressively play black market or clandestine work, you are wasting its true potential. Indeed I am finding that aggressive use of that spot is important. Combines well minors that provide fuel in order to cash out the bonus points at the end of the game.

The Foresters Lodge is a mixed bag. Definitely useful if you are planning to fell all of your wood, a 2c1w investment for 10w in return. Also with careful planning can be very points and actions effective.

Another strategy is a minimalist approach. Not removing the forests, adding more if you can, and using them for 1pt squares. equal in value to either a 1 square pasture or a plowed field. This is to save special actions, in order to use horse and playing cards when possible.

For example. I had drafted Home Wood (you can store 1 non sheep animal on any forest tile) and Surveyors Map (1 field, moor, forest downstream)

My end game farm had 3 stone rooms, a 4 square 2 pasture (stabled), 2 plowed fields, 6 forest tiles all holding animals
my final animal count was 1 sheep, 1 boar (forest), 4 cattle, 10 horses

either clear cutting or minimalist, I think the lodge is the better card because both of its uses are valid and can be enhanced by certain minors.

However there are times when you should NOT play the foresters lodge. If you have the Sowing Machine (lets you sow when you slash) or the tool shed, other minors that encourage you to slash rather than fell.
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Marc Thompson
Canada
New Westminster
British Columbia
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I'm actually kind of surprised by the conclusion here. In my view the Peat Kiln is the easiest picks you can buy. It costs next to nothing (1 stone is absurdly easy to get) and will generally give 6 fuel by the end of the game, plus the VP for the major improvement. This seems like a really good investment.

On the other hand, the Forest version requires 2 different resources to take, and they are resources which you often need early in the game. More importantly, burning through your forests is a questionable strategy, since forests can also be turned into fields. Considering that there's not many cards that give you free fields in FOTM, that's something that should be considered.
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Matt Shields
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Fugitive_Unknown wrote:
I'm actually kind of surprised by the conclusion here. In my view the Peat Kiln is the easiest picks you can buy. It costs next to nothing (1 stone is absurdly easy to get) and will generally give 6 fuel by the end of the game, plus the VP for the major improvement. This seems like a really good investment.


It also seems like it depends a lot on the number of players and whether you're using the "Family Version" side of the board or not. (Which I take it most people are, since it sounds like most aren't playing with occupations.)

If you are playing with 3 players, and you are using occupations, then the only way to get the one stone is to spend an entire action taking one stone. OTOH, if it's 4 players, and I can take RSF, which I want to do anyway, it's functionally a much cheaper improvement because I'm paying for it with my spare change.
 
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Bryann Turner
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DL+1s is a common opening move in many of my FotM games so that the charcoal kiln can be purchased.
 
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Mike T
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Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.
 
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smcmike wrote:
Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.


but in a 3 player, 3rd complexity level game, you can't get stone until later in the game. seems like this is an issue.
 
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Bryann Turner
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mekane84 wrote:
smcmike wrote:
Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.


but in a 3 player, 3rd complexity level game, you can't get stone until later in the game. seems like this is an issue.


If you really want it, you can take the Take 1 Resource space and take a Stone. I'd say that would be a good move for the 3rd player with his second peep.
 
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btizo wrote:
mekane84 wrote:
smcmike wrote:
Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.


but in a 3 player, 3rd complexity level game, you can't get stone until later in the game. seems like this is an issue.


If you really want it, you can take the Take 1 Resource space and take a Stone. I'd say that would be a good move for the 3rd player with his second peep.


I was thinking that was just available on family side of the action card?
 
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Mike T
United States
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I grabbed the Kiln in round 1 in a recent 4p level 3 game, and it served me very well. I pretty quickly upgraded to a 3 room clay hut, grabbed a Furnace (forgetting to take the extra fuel it provided), and was more than set for fuel for the rest of the game. I had enough to tithe to the Village Church twice and get the full Kiln bonus at the end without wasting any wood.

Right now, I'm leaning toward thinking the Kiln is better, for a couple of reasons.

1) It's cheaper. You can play it Round 1. You don't have to worry about chopping up your moor before getting it out, and wasting part of its advantage.

2) The advantage is easier to maximize: chopping up 3 moors will give you 15 fuel, enough to heat all the way through (with smart management) for only 3 special actions. You'll need to heat your house either way, and so you're either going to have to cut up those moors regardless or burn wood.

3) The Forester's Lodge bonus points discourage using the Lodge to cut wood, and both discourage slash and burn. In comparison, the Kiln's bonus fits with its use.
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Marcel Van Assen
Netherlands
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Dear farmers, after thinking a lot about the question - kiln or lodge? - I came to a short and probably unsatisfying answer:

It just depends...

Sorry guys, but that's it, really. It depends on your other cards.



 
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Riku Koskinen
Finland
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btizo wrote:
mekane84 wrote:
smcmike wrote:
Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.


but in a 3 player, 3rd complexity level game, you can't get stone until later in the game. seems like this is an issue.


If you really want it, you can take the Take 1 Resource space and take a Stone. I'd say that would be a good move for the 3rd player with his second peep.


We have played FotM mostly with 3-players and always with occupations. We randomly determine our seatings and the starting player, and for some reason I've been the 3rd player for way more than 33 % of the time. I quickly started to take the Kiln the first or second round by using one action to take the single stone. One stone with one action seems bad, especially when compared to the RSx squares in 4/5-player game, but there usually won't be that good squares left for the player in the third position anyway, and barring stone producing occs/minors in hand, you can't really have the early Kiln in any other way than to take the one stone.

Usually our 3-player game starts with first player taking a free occupation and the second player taking either of the special actions. Then the 3rd player has basically the choice between 3 wood or a special action, of which the special action is likely the better one. So I usually take the horse or some other special action in this position, and use the two family members to pick one stone and then go to build major improvement to get the Kiln with the stone, as these two squares are rarely blocked by either of my opponents. And if I took the horse, I already have the heating issue solved for many harvests with 15 pieces of fuel in my farmyard.
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Padish wrote:
btizo wrote:
mekane84 wrote:
smcmike wrote:
Yeah, it seems to me that if you want the Kiln, you'd better plan on grabbing it in Round 1, or early in Round 2.


but in a 3 player, 3rd complexity level game, you can't get stone until later in the game. seems like this is an issue.


If you really want it, you can take the Take 1 Resource space and take a Stone. I'd say that would be a good move for the 3rd player with his second peep.


We have played FotM mostly with 3-players and always with occupations. We randomly determine our seatings and the starting player, and for some reason I've been the 3rd player for way more than 33 % of the time. I quickly started to take the Kiln the first or second round by using one action to take the single stone. One stone with one action seems bad, especially when compared to the RSx squares in 4/5-player game, but there usually won't be that good squares left for the player in the third position anyway, and barring stone producing occs/minors in hand, you can't really have the early Kiln in any other way than to take the one stone.

Usually our 3-player game starts with first player taking a free occupation and the second player taking either of the special actions. Then the 3rd player has basically the choice between 3 wood or a special action, of which the special action is likely the better one. So I usually take the horse or some other special action in this position, and use the two family members to pick one stone and then go to build major improvement to get the Kiln with the stone, as these two squares are rarely blocked by either of my opponents. And if I took the horse, I already have the heating issue solved for many harvests with 15 pieces of fuel in my farmyard.


yeah that actually doesn't sound too bad. you have terrible options if you're 3rd player in a 3 player game in the first round, so really any alternative is likely not that great either: the 2nd occ square costs 2 food, there's no RSF, and no 2 clay square.
 
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