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Subject: 3 Player Triumvirate rss

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Kenny VenOsdel
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To start off I really like the idea behind Triumvirate. The variation on trick taking is great and provides a much different focus than most trick taking games. I have two room mates right now, so I am trying to come up with a way to extend the concept behind Triumvirate to work for 3 people.

Note: This is a work in process. I have not been able to test the idea yet but am posting it here for feedback and criticisms. I have written this assuming that the reader has a basic understanding of the game Triumvirate.

3 Player Triumvirate uses 4 suits instead of 3. You can use a standard deck of cards for this purpose.

Card Breakdown:

Senators: 2,3,4,6,8,10,Q(12)
Legion: 5,7,9,J(11)
Small Mob: K(0)
Big Mob: A(1)

To represent the fourth suit, use the purple disks provided in the game.

Spades = black
Hearts = red
Clubs = yellow suit
Diamonds = purple

3 Player Triumvirate follows the same format as the standard game. That is, players are playing out tricks to elect consuls and will pledge support cards at the end of a hand. Whoever pledges the highest value of support to the consul who gets elected wins.

Each round, deal the cards out evenly to all the players to a maximum of 15 cards in hand. Any extra cards are set aside and will not be used that round. Play starts to the left of the dealer and the dealer passes each round.

To win a hand, a suit must take 4 tricks instead of 3. Players must still follow suit when possible. After one suit takes 4 tricks, players may choose to pledge a card from their hand. This is done in the same fashion as the regular game except players may pledge a maximum of 4 cards in the game instead of 3.

There are 2 mob cards in this version, a big mob (ace) and a small mob (king). The small mob has a card value of zero and functions in the same way as the mob from the base game. The big mob has a card value of 1 and functions in the same way as the small mob except a big mob of a different suit may out trump a small mob. However, a big mob may never out trump another big mob.

Example: P1 leads an 8 of hearts. P2 trumps with a K of clubs (small mob). P3 still has to follow suit and out trumps with an ace of hearts (big mob). P3 and hearts win that trick.

When a suit wins its 4th hand (it wins a hand after already having 3 markers on the board) the game is over and whoever has pledged the highest value in that color wins.

That's about it. I realize its not quite an ideal variant since it doesn't use the original cards, but I could not figure out a way to make a 3 player version with the cards available.

I have two points for consideration that I won't be able to decide on without testing and feedback.

1. Should the large mob be worth 1 point to pledge? The reason I think it should be is that you could then pledge an 11 and a 1 in a color and tie someone who pledged the 5 and 7.

2. Ties. If the large mob is worth 1, then there is a possibility of a tie in pledges. The fix for this is that the player who pledged the highest value card in that color wins.

Feedback appreciated. I'm on my way to mark up some playing cards with circles and squares in the corners!
 
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sunday silence
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am I missing something? What do you do with the fourth suit? Pretend there is another person trying to be the leader of Rome? I have no idea, but that is what I am forced to conclude after reading your rules.

Can you please explain this? Players in the game are now pledging for a possible fourth dictator. But then doesnt that mean the hand can go to 13 tricks? 3 + 3 + 3 + 4= 13

Jeezus, I am more confused than ever.
 
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Jason Webster
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I do believe so. 4 leaders are trying to become emperor. Also 13 tricks are the max it would take to win a hand.
 
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sunday silence
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thanks for giving some feedback.

I confess the concept of a three player game of this is very interesting and I have been working on one. Definitely think four suits is the way to go with that.

On the pledging issue, one way to cut down on ties is to make the pledge values a Fibonacci sequence: 1, 2, 3, 5, 8. You can still get ties, however you can tie break based on how many cards are pledged. So you pledge 2/3 and I pledge 5 you win because you used two cards. It seems like a cleaner system. Also I never liked the idea of being restricted in what cards to pledge; I like the idea of being free to pledge whatever card you want.

Getting back to my original comment, I am not sure at this point if that was really criticism or confusion. I think there are systems out there where you can play with less tricks and still get an outcome. Like the old trick taking game Hombre. It's 9 tricks and whoever gets the most tricks wins, there are ties but that might be OK.
 
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