Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
14 Posts

Runewars» Forums » Variants

Subject: Influence bid for starting locations...? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Chris J Davis
United Kingdom
London
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Overtext pending moderation...
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The thought occurred to us after our game today that it might be a better idea to have an influence bid for starting location instead of just doing it according to a random player order.

Firstly, does anyone agree?

Secondly, can anyone suggest ideas as to how this would be best implemented? Would races need to start with more influence to enable this bid? Would this give far too much of an advantage to the elves? Would map setup need to be changed in some way (i.e, who decides where the starting region markers are placed) to keep things fair?

All responses appreciated!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nathan
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
I don't think it will fix anything.

Currently the player who places the starting location markers is the last to place his home kingdom. This appears to incentivize the starting player to try to choose roughly equal locations, or at least to make sure the worst location is still playable.

Using influence will just allow the races with the most starting influence to get the best spots. Having all the races start with equal influence would be unbalancing as well.

The problem as I see it, is that unbalanced maps can seem unfair. A lot of experience with Twilight Imperium, which had a similar mechanic to build a modular map, taught me that inexperienced players are more likely to build unbalanced maps. What I would sometimes do in that game is build the board for the game, with a sense of fairness in mind, since I built the board I would be the last to choose. Once players had played the game a couple of times we started using the map building portion.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrew
United States
flag msg tools
mbmb
It is possible for players 2-4 to place their pieces in ways that force the placement of the home realm markers in certain areas. It isn't always up to the first player if the 4th marker is playable.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrew
United States
flag msg tools
mbmb
That being said, I don't think this would fix it. I like the idea of drawing again once the board is laid out to see who gets to pick the first home realm marker.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
flag msg tools
NFHS Football & Basketball
badge
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I've never liked the idea of bidding for starting positions, personally, be it this game, Twilight Imperium, or other games. I can't even really say why, but it just seems that there's always something lacking with it, something that I think starts the game out on the right foot.


However, if someone was to do an influence bid thing, I think an earlier poster makes a good point - it favors the Elves and the Humans, who have more starting influence.

Rather, why not try an inverse bidding system, like some people do in TI3. Basically, the highest bidder picks first, but gets 0 extra influence. The next highest bidder picks second, and gets influence equal to the difference between his bid and the highest bidder. The next highest from there goes next, and gets the difference between HIS bid and the highest; IE all players other than the first get influence equal to the difference between their bids. Maybe breaking ties using the "printed starting influence" if needed.

I don't know if it would work, and I have no desire to try it myself, but I thought I'd throw it out there.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris J Davis
United Kingdom
London
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Overtext pending moderation...
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
sigmazero13 wrote:
I've never liked the idea of bidding for starting positions, personally, be it this game, Twilight Imperium, or other games. I can't even really say why, but it just seems that there's always something lacking with it, something that I think starts the game out on the right foot.


However, if someone was to do an influence bid thing, I think an earlier poster makes a good point - it favors the Elves and the Humans, who have more starting influence.

Rather, why not try an inverse bidding system, like some people do in TI3. Basically, the highest bidder picks first, but gets 0 extra influence. The next highest bidder picks second, and gets influence equal to the difference between his bid and the highest bidder. The next highest from there goes next, and gets the difference between HIS bid and the highest; IE all players other than the first get influence equal to the difference between their bids. Maybe breaking ties using the "printed starting influence" if needed.

I don't know if it would work, and I have no desire to try it myself, but I thought I'd throw it out there.


I'm not sure how that would work. As far as I can see, the difference would never be higher than three, which would mean (if there are players who are dead-set on having first choice) that the bid could just keep going around the table forever.

Unless you mean that they perform a blind bid as is normally done in the game... but then what are they bidding with? Do you mean just give the players, say, 10 "temporary" influence at the start of the game to bid with?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris J Davis
United Kingdom
London
flag msg tools
designer
badge
Overtext pending moderation...
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
wardac wrote:
It is possible for players 2-4 to place their pieces in ways that force the placement of the home realm markers in certain areas. It isn't always up to the first player if the 4th marker is playable.


Yes, this is what we've found. There is pretty much always one very preferable spot and one unwanted spot, and it has affected our games greatly.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Cameron McKenzie
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The best way is do a seperate bid for every position. There is no limit to the amount you can bid, but if you pay more than the amount of influence you start with, the excess amount you owe is resolved by giving extra influence to the other players.

So first, everyone auctions for who gets to place first. After this is done, the remaining players auction for going second, etc. Whoever goes last will therefore not pay any bid.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
flag msg tools
NFHS Football & Basketball
badge
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
bleached_lizard wrote:
Unless you mean that they perform a blind bid as is normally done in the game... but then what are they bidding with? Do you mean just give the players, say, 10 "temporary" influence at the start of the game to bid with?

Yeah, blind bid works. You aren't bidding with "your own" influence, you are bidding "how much am I willing to give the other players." If one player really really really wants to go first, and bids 100 influence, and the next player doesn't really care and bids 5, the first player is effectively giving the other players 95+ influence to start the game (in addition to whatever they start with.

There's no limit (other than what is reasonble) to what you can bid. The first player still gets his starting influence as normal; the other players just get MORE than they normally would.


Again, I don't know how well it would work in practice with Runewars. But I know a lot of people use a similar system in TI3 (with Trade Goods instead of Influence), and although I personally have no desire to try it, the system apparently works rather well. (In TI3, it's usually used with pre-set maps where the home systems aren't all on the edge, but mixed in with the galaxy, some spots are better than others).
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nathan
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
bleached_lizard wrote:
wardac wrote:
It is possible for players 2-4 to place their pieces in ways that force the placement of the home realm markers in certain areas. It isn't always up to the first player if the 4th marker is playable.


Yes, this is what we've found. There is pretty much always one very preferable spot and one unwanted spot, and it has affected our games greatly.


I completely agree this can happen. It often seems to be caused by a spot with access to poor resources. In Twilight, trade goods can be used to replace production provided by planets, so it helps with a poor resource start. Influence doesn't serve the same purpose in Runewars, what good will the extra influence do for a poor starting position?

I thing starting the last player with a free resource development would be better, at least that attacks the actual problem of poor starting locations for all the races in an equal way.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Lewis
United States
Thornton
Colorado
flag msg tools
NFHS Football & Basketball
badge
Dread Our Coming, Suffer Our Presence, Embrace Our Glory (Solonavi War Cry)
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
ngoike wrote:
Influence doesn't serve the same purpose in Runewars, what good will the extra influence do for a poor starting position?

Because influence can directly lead to Dragon Runes, which help you win the game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Cameron McKenzie
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
ngoike wrote:
Influence doesn't serve the same purpose in Runewars, what good will the extra influence do for a poor starting position?


Ask yourself this. Does the person with the poor starting position stand a reasonable chance of winning if he has unlimited influence? If you answered yes, then there is some influence value that correctly "compensates" for the poor starting position, and a bidding system will work. Even if that amount of influence is unusually high, if being in the bad position is really so bad then people will bid that high.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nathan
United States
Minneapolis
Minnesota
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
MasterDinadan wrote:
ngoike wrote:
Influence doesn't serve the same purpose in Runewars, what good will the extra influence do for a poor starting position?


Ask yourself this. Does the person with the poor starting position stand a reasonable chance of winning if he has unlimited influence? If you answered yes, then there is some influence value that correctly "compensates" for the poor starting position, and a bidding system will work. Even if that amount of influence is unusually high, if being in the bad position is really so bad then people will bid that high.


I don't agree. If you are trying to fix a problem, focus on the actual problem. Making changes to other mechanics is only likely to introduce other problems. Just like unlimited influence would only unbalance the game.

A simple example to show this in the game already. Does the race with the most starting influence have any ability to recover from a bad starting position? If not, than why would adding more influence be an aid for such situations?

The elves require additional food to be successful. Without the ability to hold/defend enough spaces to store the dragon runes you can't win. The highest starting influence doesn't alter this in any way; it's dependant on your resources.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Cameron McKenzie
United States
Atlanta
Georgia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Quote:
I don't agree. If you are trying to fix a problem, focus on the actual problem. Making changes to other mechanics is only likely to introduce other problems. Just like unlimited influence would only unbalance the game.


If unlimited influence would unbalance the game in favor of whoever gets it, then some amount of influence has to "unbalance" it just the right amount to make up for starting in a worse position.

Quote:
A simple example to show this in the game already. Does the race with the most starting influence have any ability to recover from a bad starting position? If not, than why would adding more influence be an aid for such situations?


Races that start with the most influence are disadvantaged in other ways, so they hypothetically have the same "potential" as any other race, and are similarly hurt by a bad starting position. The extra influence in this case is in addition to a race's regular starting influence. Starting with 5 influence might not be enough to make up for a bad starting position, but starting with 10 might be.

Quote:
The elves require additional food to be successful. Without the ability to hold/defend enough spaces to store the dragon runes you can't win. The highest starting influence doesn't alter this in any way; it's dependant on your resources.


So what you are saying is that even if the elves in this situation had unlimited influence, they'd still be the worst off? I thought you said giving anyone unlimited influence was unbalanced.

If X influence is too much, and Y influence is too little, some value between Y and X is just right.

As for fixing the problem, there's really no way to ensure that a variable board setup is equal for all players. The only option is just to design a predetermined board setup that is balanced for all players, and use it every time. But that's boring.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
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.