Brandon Ketchum
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I know, it sounds crazy not to use that card as an event, as it immediately swings a province to your control and is difficult for Rome to re-take.

I played a game recently, however, where I cursed my luck in getting it on turn 1. Why? Because I took Syracuse, and was thrilled about it, and...I was powerless because the Roman player simply went down and besieged it, re-taking it in 2 turns. In those 2 turns, I was in no position to sail to Sicily and try to break the siege. Hell, playing it on turn 1 as an event gives Rome the entire game to re-take it.

Should Carthage just use it as a 3 ops card on Turn 1, because it is removed from the game if played? An interesting question, I think.
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John Rodriguez
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stout_rugger wrote:
I know, it sounds crazy not to use that card as an event, as it immediately swings a province to your control and is difficult for Rome to re-take.

I played a game recently, however, where I cursed my luck in getting it on turn 1. Why? Because I took Syracuse, and was thrilled about it, and...I was powerless because the Roman player simply went down and besieged it, re-taking it in 2 turns. In those 2 turns, I was in no position to sail to Sicily and try to break the siege. Hell, playing it on turn 1 as an event gives Rome the entire game to re-take it.

Should Carthage just use it as a 3 ops card on Turn 1, because it is removed from the game if played? An interesting question, I think.


Well he had to spend troops and ops to make the siege. That card probably burned up 3 of his at least and tied up forces he could be using elsewhere. I'd say it was worth it.

The only time it might be be worth it to play is if you can use it to activate a general to fight a battle in which you are confident you will achieve a crushing defeat against a large force. The OPs your remove and the tactical advantage you get might be worth more than a 2 point swing - especially if it is don earlier in the game so you have a good shot at getting the card again.
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Glenn McMaster
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It's routine for Carthag not to play Syracuse in the early turns (1-4). Turn 7-9 you play it. Turns 5-6 - probably.


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Alexandros Boucharelis
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GLENN239 wrote:
It's routine for Carthag not to play Syracuse in the early turns (1-4). Turn 7-9 you play it. Turns 5-6 - probably.




I totally agree!
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Russ Williams
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I've had several games where Carthage never got the Syracuse card during the whole game, which makes me nervously imagine having it in an early turn and not using it, only to never have it again.
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Björn von Knorring
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If you get Syracuse in the early part of the game I would advise against using it. Even if you don´t get another chance it is an enormous threat to the romans. If you are entering round eight or nine in a close game and Syracuse hasn´t been played must take into account that you might get it which case Rome might do some really bad decisions.

And furthermore; if played early in the game Rome can usually take it back relatively easy with Varro for example (a task that fits his ability. Or lack of...)
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Russ Williams
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myth1202 wrote:
If you get Syracuse in the early part of the game I would advise against using it. Even if you don´t get another chance it is an enormous threat to the romans. If you are entering round eight or nine in a close game and Syracuse hasn´t been played must take into account that you might get it which case Rome might do some really bad decisions.

Agreed, that is possible. Or Rome might themselves have gotten the card and thus knows it won't be played.

I agree all else being equal, I'd love to play it as a 2-point surprise swing in the last turn, rather than in turn 1, for example, when Rome has plenty of time to react to it and recover Syracuse.

But it is a definite gamble to intentionally not play it if you get it in an early turn. Basically it seems to boil down to whether you want the "bird in the hand" now or to wait for the possible "two birds in the bush" later.
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Riku Riekkinen
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I like to play it early and use active strategy to bring Rome down. It gives 2 PC swing per turn & very important -1 to sail rolls.

Carthage gets -1 from Mago, -2 from starting the sail from New Carthago, -1 from Syracure... meaning you can't sink. Usually I anyway leave Mago back because he can do amphibious harashing better than others. Mago can take Habsurbal with him. Drop Habsurbal & Forces to the port and continue with Mago only (or perhaps 1CU, so he can stop one movement).
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Riku Riekkinen
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Quote:
Is there ever a time the Carthaginian player should NOT play Syracuse Aligns with Carthage as an event?


I wouldn't play it turn 5-7 if Carthage had only Africa & Spain provinces. And Rome enough troops to defend its territory. As the leave a last straw chance.
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Per Sylvan
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The card is best used in the end of the game.

Play it in turn 1-6 , and it is very easy for Rome to place a 'spare' '1' general (like Varro), on Syracuse, and use all those useless '1' cards to siege Syracuse to oblivion..

I would say, the one time that Syracuse is best played as an event, is when you have presence on Sicily w an army already, or can ship one over with relative safety (say , only bounce on a '6')
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Riku Riekkinen
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I feel I should warn about not playing Syracuse as an event again. Syracuse is the event that allows Carthage to do naval harashment and/or it eases Hannibal overrun (Hannibal converting a lot of Italy thus dumping Rome in vicious circle where it must always replace a lot of PCs at the start of the turn giving Carthage time to do things) by giving province count & distracting romans to Sicily. Always not playing Syracuse as an event will cause you probably to never learn those strategies, leading to sitting in Cisalpine & hoping for the best. You sometimes still get Syracuse late, so you get to see the other side of the coin as well.

Notably all the wargameroom champs (me, Bruce & Charles) & current WBC champ James Pei play Syracuse almost without doubt during the first hand it comes. Keith Wixson said he doesn't like to play it turns 1-3, if he doesn't plan to send an army to Sicily also.
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Tony Chen
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Sieging Syracuse isn't free. I'd be hard pressed not to play it.

If Rome is spending resources sieging Syracuse (3 or 4 turns on average?), he isn't doing stuff in Hispania, or checking Hannibal in northern Italy.

Of course depending on my hand, if I am short on 3OP cards then I might use it to fill up the empty cities at the start of the game instead.
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Tony Chen
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Perry wrote:
The card is best used in the end of the game.

Play it in turn 1-6 , and it is very easy for Rome to place a 'spare' '1' general (like Varro), on Syracuse, and use all those useless '1' cards to siege Syracuse to oblivion..

I would say, the one time that Syracuse is best played as an event, is when you have presence on Sicily w an army already, or can ship one over with relative safety (say , only bounce on a '6')
Even so sieging Syracuse is not free (3 or 4 turns average?) It is free only if sitting a Varo-like general in southern Italy maintaining status quo is a good strategy. I don't think it is.

I think a directly related question is, should Rome send a general into Hispania on turn one or two? I like to do that and that is where I'd like to spend my cards on, so staying in southern Italy to retake Syracuse comes at a huge opportunity cost. I guess if your plan was to sit there guarding southern Italy to begin with then yeah, it's pretty easy; but I don't like to do that.

Like I said, I think it all hinges on whether the Roman player likes moving into Hispania early.
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Per Sylvan
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Riku Riekkinen wrote:
I feel I should warn about not playing Syracuse as an event again. Syracuse is the event that allows Carthage to do naval harashment and/or it eases Hannibal overrun (Hannibal converting a lot of Italy thus dumping Rome in vicious circle where it must always replace a lot of PCs at the start of the turn giving Carthage time to do things) by giving province count & distracting romans to Sicily. Always not playing Syracuse as an event will cause you probably to never learn those strategies, leading to sitting in Cisalpine & hoping for the best. You sometimes still get Syracuse late, so you get to see the other side of the coin as well.

Notably all the wargameroom champs (me, Bruce & Charles) & current WBC champ James Pei play Syracuse almost without doubt during the first hand it comes. Keith Wixson said he doesn't like to play it turns 1-3, if he doesn't plan to send an army to Sicily also.


Well, Riku, have to hand it to you...I have switched over to your camp now...I am playing Syra as an event now when I get it, just about everytime...

I would definitely play Syracuse as an Event in T1-T3 - during this time, Rome will struggle to devote any resources to re-siege it (especially if Carthage is playing aggressively).

I would be especially delighted to get it in T1 (waiting to play it, until Longus has moved off)..It will give the sailing bonus and of course, the provincecount swing as well, which, combined with an early (T1) Hannibal entry into Italy, will put Rome under immediate pressure...


I would definitely play the event in T7 to T9 - that is a given...It is not likely I would get it again!


In T4 to T6 - it *could* be considered for NOT playing...The specific circumstance, would be if Hannibal is already dead, and Carthage is unable to pressure Rome. Then, I would switch to a target of getting 9-9 provincecount on T9, thus defending up until T9, then try a province steal on last turn - where Syracuse would be one potential threat, that Rome must consider...

...and that last paragraph would be answer to the original posters query; ..if you should ever elect *not* to play Syracuse, for its event effect..
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Brandon Ketchum
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Let's put it this way--I'd love it if the Carthaginian player passed up plying this card early, were I playing the Romans. Considering you have less than a 50% chance of ever seeing the card again (sometimes far less than a 50% chance, if there are enough reshuffles), and considering how much of a headache it can cause the Romans, AND the benefits it gives the Carthaginians in the meantime, I think it's a terrible idea not to play the card when given a chance.
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Einmal ist keinmal
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I'm just going to echo those who would play it at the first turn drawn. I think it's quite possibly the most powerful event in the game.
 
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