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Power Struggle» Forums » General

Subject: Bribery is normally a bad thing, isn't it? rss

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Nacho Facello
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It is possible to win the game without bribing or accepting bribes, but it would be very difficult.

First of all, if you are offered a bribe and refuse, you pay a penalty (get rid of an employee), so you might become an easy target if people want to advance in the bribery track.

Second, you bar yourself from the tool of using bribed privilege cards.

Third, and most important, the game is won by the first person to make four points, out of a possible six. Those are four tracks on the board (one of which is bribery), getting three external consultants, and beating your archenemy. So that leaves you five possible points. And there's a chance than your archenemy objective card includes the bribery track, so you would have to forget about that part too. So yes, it's possible to win, but just barely, and you'll be handicapping yourself for the duration of the game. It could be interesting to try it if you're the only experienced player playing against newbies.

That being said, I only played six games or so, and never saw anyone take the bribery point — maybe it's an issue with my group, but we tend to see the bribed cards as not that valuable since they're discarded by resigning.
 
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Dave Eisen
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Bribery is a fine way to get a VP. It does require starting early as there is no way to turn your bribery engine up to overdrive as there is with other VP objectives which can be acquired in bunches by spending money or tossing away workers.

The risk that a bribed benefit will be removed has never stopped us. Usually resigning a department head position is a poor use for an action and it is generally not often done. When a department head seems likely to resign, this is pretty visible on the board and it reduces (in many cases to the minimum) the amount spent on the bribe.
 
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Christopher Giroir
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dkeisen wrote:
The risk that a bribed benefit will be removed has never stopped us. Usually resigning a department head position is a poor use for an action and it is generally not often done. When a department head seems likely to resign, this is pretty visible on the board and it reduces (in many cases to the minimum) the amount spent on the bribe.


Same in my group. Spending an action ONLY to deny someone else a power they bribed is a big cost for very little gain.
 
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Rion Hanson
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wait i thought the bribed action card is returned tp the right owner/side when you elect new heads.
 
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Christopher Giroir
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nitroburn1 wrote:
wait i thought the bribed action card is returned tp the right owner/side when you elect new heads.


It definitely is. But you can still have powers become unusable. For example, I bribe controller away from the player on my left. Then on their turn they immediately resign from controller. This renders my bribe worthless. The controller for next round still gets the card flipped up again next turn, but I can not use the power I bribed for this turn.

In this thread people mentioned bribes not being popular due to that possibility and a couple of people (me included) responded by saying we didn't think that happened often enough to prevent bribing. Bribing is too good (due to the corruption points, and due to the awesome powers) to not take advantage of them due to the risk.
 
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Dave G
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Kelsin wrote:
nitroburn1 wrote:
wait i thought the bribed action card is returned tp the right owner/side when you elect new heads.


It definitely is. But you can still have powers become unusable. For example, I bribe controller away from the player on my left. Then on their turn they immediately resign from controller. This renders my bribe worthless. The controller for next round still gets the card flipped up again next turn, but I can not use the power I bribed for this turn.

In this thread people mentioned bribes not being popular due to that possibility and a couple of people (me included) responded by saying we didn't think that happened often enough to prevent bribing. Bribing is too good (due to the corruption points, and due to the awesome powers) to not take advantage of them due to the risk.


We played our first game yesterday, and almost every time a power was bribed from someone they immediately resigned the position and made it useless.
 
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Dan Schaeffer
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dkeisen wrote:
Bribery is a fine way to get a VP. It does require starting early as there is no way to turn your bribery engine up to overdrive as there is with other VP objectives which can be acquired in bunches by spending money or tossing away workers.

The risk that a bribed benefit will be removed has never stopped us. Usually resigning a department head position is a poor use for an action and it is generally not often done. When a department head seems likely to resign, this is pretty visible on the board and it reduces (in many cases to the minimum) the amount spent on the bribe.


I'm curious why you say resigning a divisional head is a poor choice of an action. It gives you at least one seat on the Board of Directors (i.e., money at payout time plus a shot at election to Chairman) or a consultant (i.e., 1/3 of a point); and it can screw someone out of a privilege they have just paid you to get. The only downside is you don't get the privilege at the next Directors' Meeting, so you don't have that bribe-bait in the next round, but you typically have other actions to get yourself positioned for the next round anyway. This game has a lot of "f*** you" attributes, and that seems like a clear one to me.
 
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Martin G
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Golux13 wrote:

I'm curious why you say resigning a divisional head is a poor choice of an action. It gives you at least one seat on the Board of Directors (i.e., money at payout time plus a shot at election to Chairman) or a consultant (i.e., 1/3 of a point); and it can screw someone out of a privilege they have just paid you to get.


Well one reason is that you can get all that stuff except the screwage without spending an action at all, by allowing the division to be taken over by someone else. Actions are very limited in this game so they all need to be getting you towards your goals. Another is that if you keep doing this, people will stop trying to bribe you, so you'll struggle for corruption points. I only tend to resign when I've set up to take a couple of managers up to the board with the divisional head, and take over the chairmanship too. And I'd only do that if influence was one of my goals.
 
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Dave G
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qwertymartin wrote:
I only tend to resign when I've set up to take a couple of managers up to the board with the divisional head, and take over the chairmanship too. And I'd only do that if influence was one of my goals.


Uh, yeah. Which you can't do without spending an action. And which can be very valuable.
 
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djgutierrez77 wrote:
qwertymartin wrote:
I only tend to resign when I've set up to take a couple of managers up to the board with the divisional head, and take over the chairmanship too. And I'd only do that if influence was one of my goals.


Uh, yeah. Which you can't do without spending an action. And which can be very valuable.


I was explaining why resigning can sometimes be a poor choice of action. I didn't say it was always a poor choice of action.

Also, if people are doing this 'almost every time', then it becomes less valuable for most of them. The people who do it first will have their board members pushed out of the board before they count towards the chairman's election.
 
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Dan Schaeffer
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qwertymartin wrote:
Golux13 wrote:

I'm curious why you say resigning a divisional head is a poor choice of an action. It gives you at least one seat on the Board of Directors (i.e., money at payout time plus a shot at election to Chairman) or a consultant (i.e., 1/3 of a point); and it can screw someone out of a privilege they have just paid you to get.


Well one reason is that you can get all that stuff except the screwage without spending an action at all, by allowing the division to be taken over by someone else. Actions are very limited in this game so they all need to be getting you towards your goals. Another is that if you keep doing this, people will stop trying to bribe you, so you'll struggle for corruption points. I only tend to resign when I've set up to take a couple of managers up to the board with the divisional head, and take over the chairmanship too. And I'd only do that if influence was one of my goals.


Yes, you can get the Board seat without an action if someone takes over the division, but you can't plan for that, because it happens only if someone else puts Departments in your Division. Also, in that case, you get only one Board seat, whereas if you resign, you take all your Department heads from the same Division with you, giving you a larger and more secure bloc on the Board.

As for one of your goals being influence -- it seems to me that getting influence should always be one of your goals anyway. A point is a point, and when you're looking to get 4 out of 6, any one of them is as good as any other. Same with consultancies.
 
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qwertymartin wrote:
I was explaining why resigning can sometimes be a poor choice of action. I didn't say it was always a poor choice of action.


Well, I was asking why you said it's "usually" a poor choice. I am sure there are times when it's not your best move, and times when it's not a good move, but I'm not sure that's usually the case.
 
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Martin G
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Golux13 wrote:
qwertymartin wrote:
I was explaining why resigning can sometimes be a poor choice of action. I didn't say it was always a poor choice of action.


Well, I was asking why you said it's "usually" a poor choice. I am sure there are times when it's not your best move, and times when it's not a good move, but I'm not sure that's usually the case.


I didn't say "usually",
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Golux13 wrote:
Yes, you can get the Board seat without an action if someone takes over the division, but you can't plan for that, because it happens only if someone else puts Departments in your Division.


That's not true - assuming there are already some other players' offices in the division, you can plan to use the restructuring action to move your offices away, hopefully to take control of a different division.

Quote:
Also, in that case, you get only one Board seat, whereas if you resign, you take all your Department heads from the same Division with you, giving you a larger and more secure bloc on the Board.


Yep, which is why I said that I tend to use the resigning action only when I can take a couple of other managers up to the board along with the division head.

Quote:
As for one of your goals being influence -- it seems to me that getting influence should always be one of your goals anyway. A point is a point, and when you're looking to get 4 out of 6, any one of them is as good as any other. Same with consultancies.


I find that to have a chance of winning, you need to pick the 4 VPs you're going for early and not put any effort into moving up tracks that aren't your goal. Some of them don't combine well: influence and consultancies, because they both come mainly from division heads; or shares and main departments, because they can both need lots of money.

The path of least resistance is to go for the three VPs on your archenemy card, because then the fouth one comes naturally. But if you face stiff competition from your archenemy, you may need an alternative plan. Corruption is the one VP that seems to 'just happen' as you can rack up points on other players' turns.
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qwertymartin wrote:
Golux13 wrote:
qwertymartin wrote:
I was explaining why resigning can sometimes be a poor choice of action. I didn't say it was always a poor choice of action.


Well, I was asking why you said it's "usually" a poor choice. I am sure there are times when it's not your best move, and times when it's not a good move, but I'm not sure that's usually the case.


I didn't say "usually",
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Well, you answered my question, so I naturally thought you were backing up his "usually." (It surely had nothing to do with something like me not realizing you were not the person I was responding to! whistle)

Let me rephrase: I was asking why it's "usually" a poor choice... etc.
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qwertymartin wrote:
I find that to have a chance of winning, you need to pick the 4 VPs you're going for early and not put any effort into moving up tracks that aren't your goal. Some of them don't combine well: influence and consultancies, because they both come mainly from division heads; or shares and main departments, because they can both need lots of money.

The path of least resistance is to go for the three VPs on your archenemy card, because then the fouth one comes naturally. But if you face stiff competition from your archenemy, you may need an alternative plan. Corruption is the one VP that seems to 'just happen' as you can rack up points on other players' turns.


We've played it only once, and I botched it badly early on (by not recognizing quickly enough how certain situations worked with the mechanics). I wound up with a lot of Main Departments,even though I had no Archenemy-based reason for getting them, and completely punting on one of my "focus" tracks.

I'd say more, but really I'd rather just forget the whole thing.

Seriously, we all enjoyed the game a lot and I'm looking forward to more plays.
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Golux13 wrote:

Well, you answered my question, so I naturally thought you were backing up his "usually." (It surely had nothing to do with something like me not realizing you were not the person I was responding to! whistle)

Let me rephrase: I was asking why it's "usually" a poor choice... etc.


Fair enough I don't know if I'd say 'usually' but I did think you underplayed the downsides when you said:

Quote:
The only downside is you don't get the privilege at the next Directors' Meeting, so you don't have that bribe-bait in the next round


I think a more important downside is the opportunity cost of spending an action resigning when you might have been able to get most of the benefits by being replaced. There's also the downside of putting other players off bribing you, which will reduce your income and corruption points.

Resigning can be a powerful move, but I would say 'usually' only when you've set up for it and can take a couple of other managers up to the board, preferably near the end of a round when no one can respond.
 
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Golux13 wrote:

We've played it only once, and I botched it badly early on (by not recognizing quickly enough how certain situations worked with the mechanics). I wound up with a lot of Main Departments,even though I had no Archenemy-based reason for getting them, and completely punting on one of my "focus" tracks.


Sounds a lot like my first play. By the time I'd realised what I should be doing, the game was almost done, I had a bunch of points on tracks that weren't doing anything for me, and no way of coming back.

Quote:
Seriously, we all enjoyed the game a lot and I'm looking forward to more plays.


Yeah, I think it's superb. My second and third plays were great because I could strategise right from the beginning. Can't wait to get in a game where everyone has a few plays under their belt as it's so hard for new players to compete.
 
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