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Subject: How well does it scale? rss

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Josiah Miller
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I see that it is recommended with 2, 3, or 4... but how well does it scale between these player numbers? Scalability is becoming a major selling point for me as I am trying to be more selective with my game purchases. Has anyone played it with all 3 combinations that can shed a little light on what is missing (or not) when a full compliment of players is unavailable?
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Here is an excerpt from the rules that describe the setup for a 2 and 3 player game. Basicly, everything remains the same as a four player game except that you're reducing the number of docking ports available at each facility and you're increasing the number of colonies each player has to land on the planet.


3 Player Variant
Each player takes seven colony tokens. Take the ships of the unclaimed color, turn them all so that the 1 faces are on top, and use them to cover docking ports marked with three dots.
> One ship at the Solar Converter,
> One ship at the Lunar Mine,
> Two ships at the Orbital Market,
> Two ships at the Shipyard.
These ships will stay in place throughout the game and may not be moved, removed, or changed. At the beginning of the game, player two receives one fuel token and player three receives one ore token.

2 Player Variant
Each player takes eight colony tokens. Take the ships of the unclaimed colors, turn them all so that the 1 faces are on top, and use them to cover all docking ports marked with dots.
> One ship at the Solar Converter,
> Two ships at the Lunar Mine,
> Two ships at the Orbital Market,
> Three ships at the Colony Constructor,
> Four ships at the Shipyard.
These ships will stay in place throughout the game and may not be moved, removed, or changed. At the beginning of the game, player two receives one fuel token.
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Josiah Miller
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Thanks for the resonse. I am really excited about the game and pleased to see it uses a limited option variant as opposed to a ghost player. In my opinion, this makes for a less confusing gaming experience when 4 players are unavailable.

Cheers and congratulations on what seems to be already such a success story!
 
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Tory Niemann
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brotherjo wrote:
Cheers and congratulations on what seems to be already such a success story!

Thanks!

I designed Alien Frontiers with four players in mind, so it really hums with four. Three is still great with a lot of interaction and some limited choices.

What I didn't anticipate early in the design phase (but was very pleased with) is how brutally cutthroat Alien Frontiers turned out to be with two players. Since there's only one other player, anything you do affects them directly and any aggressive action you take can be seen as a personal vendetta.

With the right players the two player game is more civil and friendly, but with the really right players, it can be down right fierce.
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