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Battlestar Galactica: The Board Game» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Semi-broken 8 player game rss

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Neil
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Eight of us got together last night to play games. I decided, perhaps unwisely, to suggest that we try an eight player game of BSG.

The Players

I was the only experienced player in the group. Three others are regular gamers who had played one game of BSG previously. The rest (half the group) were newbies.

Variant

We modified the game as follows (see this thread for background discussion):

-Each player receives one extra skill card from within his/her skill set
-Humans win if they jump at 9 distance
-Dials start two ticks higher
-3 humans, one sympathetic cylon leader, 3 cylons
-Pagasus expansion without New Caprica

I knew this was a bit slanted in favour of the humans (given the players I thought the humans would need some help). It turned out to be slanted too much.

Highlights


-- I knew on the first couple of skill checks who two cylons were. They outed themselves by playing cards against a skill check that only they could have played. One of them was so anxious to prove his humanity when I called him out that it only confirmed my suspicions. (I was right)

-- I tried to airlock one of the cylons. The skill check failed by 2. That was fine. But then when I drew a crisis card. The card was the one which says that if you fail the skill check, the current player is executed on a roll of 1-4. We failed the skill check and I rolled a 1 and was executed -- much to the entertainment of the toaster I had just tried to take out.

--Humans won with morale at 2 and everything else safe.

Observations and Conclusions

The game was fun but broken (or nearly broken).

The downtime was a bit much. While this was largely because most people were new to the game, the number of players made it worse.

With 8 players, it took less than one go around the table for Galactica to jump each time. Since it took 4 jumps to reach 9 distance (2, 2, 2, 3), each player had only 4 or 5 turns for the entire 3.5 hour game. That is too few.

Fewer turns per player hurt the cylons more than it did the humans. As one player observed, it is easier for humans coordinate their actions. The cylons, however, are mainly working alone. For example, it takes at least two turns for a cylon to play a super crisis card: one turn to go to the Resurrection Ship to get the card, the other turn to go to the New Caprica location to play it. It took a cylon almost half the game to play that one card.

One newbie ended up with two cylon loyalty cards. Since the turns were so few, by the time he got around to revealing one card and infecting someone else with the other, the game was one turn away from being over.

A possible remedy for the above problems is to lengthen the jump prep track by 1 or 2. But I think a better solution is to skip the 8 player game altogether and break into two groups instead. I don't regret playing with 8 players. It was fun. But it was also gruelling at times and a bit frustrating for the cylon players. Next time I'll suggest we stick to playing games with the optimal number of players.

With fewer players, each player gets to make more decisions during the game. With more players and fewer decisions, there isn't as much game to experience. I just hope that some of these players will be willing to play BSG again.

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Carl Bussema
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Lansing
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Re: semi-broken 8 player game
If you were playing with Pegasus, you should have passed off the extra loyalty card right away either as soon as you revealed (post-sleeper) or as soon as you received it during the sleeper phase (revealed pre-sleeper).

That said, two 4-player games might have worked better!
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Neil
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Re: semi-broken 8 player game
InfoCynic wrote:
If you were playing with Pegasus, you should have passed off the extra loyalty card right away either as soon as you revealed (post-sleeper) or as soon as you received it during the sleeper phase (revealed pre-sleeper).

That said, two 4-player games might have worked better!


Yes that's how we did it (when you reveal post sleeper phase, you reveal only one card and pass the other card or cards to another player of your choice).

 
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