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Subject: Card Balancing suggestion (and a suggestion re: the dice) rss

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Gary L
Canada
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Hello, all!

I just picked this game up--I haven't even 'baggified' the pieces yet--but it occurs to me that the following may be a great way to balance the card-drawing:

The cards effectively may be split up into two groups:

A) start-game cards (favouring scoring outside of the city)
B) end-game cards (favouring scoring in a large city).

During the game, discard the cards into two separate discard piles--starters and enders.

Then, to set up the deck for the next play:

1) shuffle each discard pile
2) set 1/2 of the 'enders' aside to be the bottom of the new deck
3) shuffle 1/2 of the 'starters' and the other half of the 'enders' together to create the middle part of the deck
4) put the remaining 'starters' on top of the deck.

Voila! Everyone gets great starting cards at the beginning, great ending cards at the end, and a mix during the middle of the game when both may be useful.

This is theoretical--I'll be playing it for the first time tonight or tomorrow--but I'd love to have Mason vets try it out and let me know what they think.

THE DICE

For those who are allergic to dice and who wish to mitigate the randomness somewhat, why not try what ol' R.K. did in Genesis? Either place the TWO colours of houses as rolled, OR place ONE of your own choice (regardless as to whether or not you rolled a wild).

Salutations,

Gary LaPeare
 
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Nick Fisk
United Kingdom
Stoke on Trent
Staffordshire
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To be honest, I think it's completely unnecessary.

Sometimes the "large city" cards are never worth much ... we've had plenty of games end with no cities, or maybe one small city.

If you've had a poorer hand dealt to you, the skill in the game comes from manipulating the score and your hand to improve your chances.

Why not play it a few times following the rules, and see what you think ?


N.

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Tomello Visello
United States
Reston
Virginia
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violin man wrote:
I just picked this game up--I haven't even 'baggified' the pieces yet--but it occurs to me that the following may be a great way to balance the card-drawing:
I've had my copy plenty longer. I even use it for "Gateway" purposes. I don't see the problem.

see also: http://boardgamegeek.com/article/1752221#1752221

 
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Carl Olson
United States
Connecticut
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violin man wrote:

I just picked this game up--I haven't even 'baggified' the pieces yet--but it occurs to me that the following may be a great way to balance the card-drawing:


In our group, when a noob wants to "balance" the game, we open up a second set, turn all the cards face up, and tell them to choose any cards they like. Often times, we can finish the entire game before they decide, and then we move on to something else.
 
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Todd Redden
United States
Manchester
Connecticut
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Part of the fun of this game is knowing what cards to hold on to and which ones to dump. Most games never end up with "large cities", and there are still some random elements which can't be controlled by such manipulation, such as getting the towers=on=the=water cards early before any/many cities form. It could be tried as an alternative, but I don't think it's necessary, the game always works fine as-is.
 
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Stven Carlberg
United States
Decatur
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What the other guys said.

Don't try to "balance" the game. There are plenty of opportunities to trade out cards if you don't like the ones you've got. Accept the challenge and enjoy!

 
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Caleb
United States
Seminole
Florida
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tmredden wrote:
Part of the fun of this game is knowing what cards to hold on to and which ones to dump. Most games never end up with "large cities", and there are still some random elements which can't be controlled by such manipulation, such as getting the towers=on=the=water cards early before any/many cities form. It could be tried as an alternative, but I don't think it's necessary, the game always works fine as-is.


I came across this thread a while ago and didn't have much to add, except that in my experience games were mainly ending with a big city on the board.

However, as I've been playing quite a bit on Yucata lately, I've experienced many games where only very small cities get built, and in some cases where the game ends with only 2 or 3 cities on the board. This severely cripples the 'big city' scoring cards and generally keeps scores low.

I've come to the conclusion that new players dramatically over-estimate the situations where merging cities is a good idea. Essentially, if a new player is holding a good big-city card they almost always merge, expecting that card to be worth lots of points. And it is. Except, it may be that an opponent is holding 2 or 3 big-city cards and is super-pleased that you've helped him by starting a big-city arms race. Generally it's almost never worth it to create a big city unless you have several (definitely at least 2, but probably at least 3) cards that benefit from big cities. I think once players realize this, big cities become less common, and all the scoring cards come more into balance. I've revised my rating of this game upward based on my plays on Yucata with experienced players - it's a real treat. I'm thrilled to have picked this game up on a lark when it was $10 on Amazon some years ago.
 
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