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Subject: What are you going to build rss

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yschiew
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What are you going to build in a 4/5 player game when
both small markets are picked up before your turn comes in the first round
and both small warehouses are picked up after a couple of rounds, before you get to do so.

what 1 and 2 point buildings would u build? ; and what type of strategy would u go for if that's the case..

 
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Yehuda Berlinger
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Sugar Mill or Indigo Plant, in that order. Almost always nothing else, unless I'm feeling perverse.

Yehuda
 
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Andy Cassola
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Get a querry and buy the Indigo plant for free, save money and get the large market.
This is usually my strategy in this kind of situation.

 
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yschiew
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hmm, i won't be able to diversify right? since the small warehouse has been taken and if i craft - ship, my goods will be gone.

do u guys reckon a wharf instead of a harbor would be better from there?
 
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Jared Heng
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I have tried out this scenario on myself once after observing the playing styles in my group (4 players).Assuming player 4 (starting corn) tends to use a diversified strategy and you are player 1 (starting indigo),you should go for a specialized production strategy.By specialized,I do not mean that you only produce lots of ONE type of good and ship (end of story).That would not work well later in the game especially against experienced players.Instead,I would start with a small indigo plant and then get a tobacco/coffee building.In the meantime,get a quarry in round 1 and some corn in subsequent settler rounds to help your delayed production.You do not need to worry too much about not getting the small warehouse especially in a 4-5 player game when everyone is trying to outdo one another and prevent any specialized mass shipping strategy of one type of good.(which means your chances of throwing away goods is lower)Instead,sell your tobacco/coffee and get a library.With the help of the library,get a large indigo/sugar building and a wharf.By now people may start throwing away goods but your wharf is immune to that.

Note that the corn starter tends to have a cash advantage at the start while you need to spend cash on the small indigo plant AND add colonists to start production.The corn starter who gets a small market would usually try to sell the corn early and make some easy cash.As player 1 or 2,you will need to delay that for as long as possible by making defensive role choices even if it delays indigo production for the first 2 rounds.Later,you will be able to catch up very easily on that mere 1 or 2 VPs if you choose your roles well.The tobacco/coffee you sell would help you earn the necessary cash to get a library.
These suggestions do not guarantee victory but they will help you to even out the early cash advantage of the corn starters.
 
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John Richert
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The library is in the expansion I believe.

Anyway, I think the way to go in that situation is:
coffee/tobacco -> large market/office -> harbor/wharf

It is hard to say whether the harbor or wharf is better in a given situation. I find that the wharf is best if you have a warehouse and are producing a lot of one type of good. Otherwise, the harbor is typically better. My usual strategy has me producing one or two of all the commodities. Sure, I throw a lot of barrels out, but with the harbor, I maximize the use of the barrels I can ship.

Also, if you get the large market, you might need to get the office. I played a game recently that was marred by trade fear because I had both of the markets and was trading coffee. No one else took the trader, and they traded only the goods that I had. No one cleared the trading house so I could not trade. That threw the game in the hands of the shipper, since cash was so low. If I had taken the office then, before the harbor, I would have been able to trade easily and make 7-8 gold off each coffee. I would have easily won the game then, I still had a chance but did not read my wife correctly, wound up losing by one.

As I play this game more, I am beginning to value the large market more and more. Also, I find that if I get tobacco I tend to ship more than coffee, which I trade a good deal more. Also, if you go coffee, you might want to captain a bit more so you can get one or two coffee on a boat. This locks the boat up for you, and if you have the harbor and ship one coffee each captain phase you are increasing your shipping VP for coffee by 100%. Even if you ship two coffee you are increasing your shipping VP by 50%.
 
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Joe Mucchiello
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If I am player 1 on turn 1, I might not build anything since my 3 or 4 Dbs and unmanned quarry cannot get me a building I want. Being behind one building isn't that big a deal yet. And how turn 2 goes might invalidate anything I might buy in round 1. I'd rather hoard money in the first few turns then regret spending it (based on the way the plantations draw) in the next few turns.

Also, buying small warehouses too early can cripple the other players' ability to buy mid-game buildings they need. I don't see the need to worry about that in round 1 or 2.

But I'm no expert.
 
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Jared Heng
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I think John brought up a good point about getting the large market early.This is especially important for players 1 and 2 who do not have the early cash advantage as the corn starters.

Also, if you get the large market, you might need to get the office. I played a game recently that was marred by trade fear because I had both of the markets and was trading coffee. No one else took the trader, and they traded only the goods that I had. No one cleared the trading house so I could not trade.

An office is useful or you may wish to get a factory instead of an office so that your income is not solely dependent on taking the trader.This frees you up to take other important roles.

If I am player 1 on turn 1, I might not build anything since my 3 or 4 Dbs and unmanned quarry cannot get me a building I want.

I think getting a small indigo plant would still be useful even though you cannot man it immediately.This is for the sake of VPs.Each building round that you skip means that one or more of your opponents are gaining VPs over you from their new buildings.You don't need to worry about the quarry because player 3 would most likely take the mayor assuming player 2 takes the builder in round 1.This allows you to man your quarry immediately and by round 2,start taking the prospector or roles with $1 on them.By round 3,you should be able to build a large market while the others are saving up for some other building.This again gives you an advantage in VPs over those who did not build.Sell your indigo at the first opportunity you get with the large market bonus and don't worry too much about the one or two VPs gained by the corn producers.Money is especially important in the early game and even if you do not ship during the first 3 rounds,you can still catch up easily just by getting that nice building (and its VPs)you want.I would recommend getting the small indigo plant,large market and factory in that order because it works for me. (and taking corn plantations along the way) Of course,if you are able to get the small market in round 1,go for it before the small indigo plant because there are only 2 of them and you can save a lot compared to the large market.After all,the small indigo plant cannot be manned immediately.This will help you keep up with the starting cash advantage of the corn starters.

 
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Joe Mucchiello
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prgeek wrote:
If I am player 1 on turn 1, I might not build anything since my 3 or 4 Dbs and unmanned quarry cannot get me a building I want.

I think getting a small indigo plant would still be useful even though you cannot man it immediately.This is for the sake of VPs.Each building round that you skip means that one or more of your opponents are gaining VPs over you from their new buildings.

There will be more than 12 build phases in the game. That aside, in round 2, someone will Settle. Hopefully player 3 or 4. On that settler phase I hope to gain tobacco or coffee (tobacco is better). Then if I can, I can build a 5er (with 3 Db, 1 from quarry, 1 from builder priv), if I have tobacco, then my first building is a tobacco storage. On the next builder phase, I'll probably be cash poor. Then I can build a small indigo for free (with my quarry).

In fact, I have never paid a db for a small indigo when I'm first chair. I always defer getting the small indigo until I can get it for free. I might only worry about it in a 5 player game with everyone getting indigo plantations because of a freak initial tile draw.

The whole purpose of a quarry is to save dbs. If I buy a building before manning the quarry, then I should not have taken the quarry in the first round.
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I would recommend getting the small indigo plant,large market and factory in that order because it works for me. (and taking corn plantations along the way)
Why do I need two sources of income? I either want large market OR factory. Both is overkill. You are overfocused on money making in the early going. I prefer having monopolies early. YMMV.
 
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Jared Heng
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There will be more than 12 build phases in the game. That aside, in round 2, someone will Settle. Hopefully player 3 or 4. On that settler phase I hope to gain tobacco or coffee (tobacco is better). Then if I can, I can build a 5er (with 3 Db, 1 from quarry, 1 from builder priv), if I have tobacco, then my first building is a tobacco storage. On the next builder phase, I'll probably be cash poor. Then I can build a small indigo for free (with my quarry).

My suggestions are not the only way and what works well for me may not be the same for other groups.It all depends on the experience level of all the players.My views reflect those of an ordinary PR player who likes to have some (ok,lots of) fun.If everyone is almost as equally experienced,that 1 or 2 VPs can mean the difference between victory and defeat.The overall process of building sequences is mostly determined by the players' experience and their seating positions.Also,starting tobacco/coffee production before establishing at least 2 other low value goods like corn and indigo could be counter-productive.Your opponents may force you to ship your cash crop before you have a chance to sell them.

Why do I need two sources of income? I either want large market OR factory. Both is overkill. You are overfocused on money making in the early going. I prefer having monopolies early. YMMV.

Cash is very important in the early game and decreases in value towards the end.I try to get as much cash as possible at the start to grab any critical buildings that suit my position before anyone else gets them and leaving me with none.After that,I can slow down on the cash in exchange for increasing VPs.Monopolies can be useful but there are also trade-offs.Even if you manage to establish a cash crop monopoly early and lock a ship,your opponents could just as easily do likewise with lower value crops that you lack at a much lower cost.Usually,players produce cash crops for selling rather than shipping to justify the high costs of setting up production.This applies whether there is a monopoly or not.This is where the factory comes in.If you are unable to sell because the trading house is full or are forced to ship your cash crop,the money earned from the factory would help supplement your income and this could be significant.Monopolies can be broken but not your continuous ability to make money from a factory/selling if you play the right moves.This in turn translates into getting buildings that earn you VPs.
 
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Joe Mucchiello
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This is a thread on strategy. I am just pointing out the reader that the theory you espouse is not necessarily the best one. Mine may not be the best either. I just wanted to give time to the other side.

prgeek wrote:
The overall process of building sequences is mostly determined by the players' experience and their seating positions.Also,starting tobacco/coffee production before establishing at least 2 other low value goods like corn and indigo could be counter-productive.Your opponents may force you to ship your cash crop before you have a chance to sell them.

Just yesterday I had a functioning tobacco after round 3. I still managed to trade it because two opponents were fighting over coffee and the fourth opponent had sugar up and running. Thus at the end of round 2 I forced all three ships to have something on them. My tobacco could go nowhere but the trading house.

I've done this many times before. This is why I balk at statements like "don't go into tobacco or coffee before having indigo or sugar to back it up." The exception to that rule is, "unless the boats are already occupied by corn, sugar and indigo."
Quote:
Cash is very important in the early game and decreases in value towards the end.I try to get as much cash as possible at the start to grab any critical buildings that suit my position before anyone else gets them and leaving me with none.
I still think you over do it. The 5 you spend on large market could be used for an early factory or harbor. You take factory if you have diverse crops. You take harbor if you are specialized.
Quote:
Monopolies can be useful but there are also trade-offs.Even if you manage to establish a cash crop monopoly early and lock a ship
No, don't lock a ship with a monopoly. Use a monopoly to gain cash fast and build build build. The game I mentioned above, I didn't ship tobacco until someone else had access to tobacco in the 7th or 8th round. Instead, through trade and a factory, I built and manned 3 large buildings ending the game in round 11. Only lock a ship if you've gotten a harbor or wharf, and then only if you produce a lot of it. I built the factory in round 5 and had it and sugar manned in round 6. Indigo became manned in round 7 and after that it was easy to trade and craft as I desired. The one time they tried to slow me down, by not clearing the trading house, was the time I took trader myself with corn to clear it and being gov next round, still traded a tobacco the next round.
Quote:
Monopolies can be broken
Which is why you don't use them for shipping advantage, you use them for trade advantage. Once they are broken, then you start shipping the product. You now have someone who was frantically trying to break you monopoly working WITH you to maintain the ship duopoly. He's no longer the enemy.
 
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Jared Heng
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Thanks for the comments.Again,I do not claim that my methods are the best and what works for me may not work for others.However,it does not take an expert to know that your opponents can and will force you to ship your cash crop at an early stage if they are experienced enough.

I've done this many times before. This is why I balk at statements like "don't go into tobacco or coffee before having indigo or sugar to back it up." The exception to that rule is, "unless the boats are already occupied by corn, sugar and indigo.

It seems that you are playing against less experienced opponents.That is why one or more of them also start producing a cash crop before starting 2 other low value goods.This allows you the opportunity to force them to ship their coffee while saving your tobacco to sell.Experienced opponents will not let that happen so easily.

I still think you over do it. The 5 you spend on large market could be used for an early factory or harbor. You take factory if you have diverse crops. You take harbor if you are specialized.

Which is what I also do,depending on the situation.This is what makes PR so exciting because there is no one and only way to victory!The harbor is used for a diversified and not specialized strategy.The wharf is more appropriate for that.

No, don't lock a ship with a monopoly. Use a monopoly to gain cash fast and build build build.

Of course monopolies are great,but this also depends on the random plantation draws.Again,experienced opponents will try to force you to ship your cash crop early before you are able to make an early sale.My experience was that even when I got a monopoly early,another player would also establish his own monopoly and so when I sold tobacco for example,he will also sell his coffee and so any advantage I got was also minimal.It takes more than a monopoly to win by taking the right roles that benefit you the most while helping your opponents the least or even better,putting them at a disadvantage.

The one time they tried to slow me down, by not clearing the trading house, was the time I took trader myself with corn to clear it and being gov next round, still traded a tobacco the next round.

Clearing the trading house for everyone may work for or against you.While you use up one role action simply just to clear the trading house,you would have freed up your opponents to take other roles that may benefit them even more.Of course,if the trader card had some $ on it or you use a market bonus on your corn,it would at least be worth something.The next round you sell your tobacco,someone else may then sell his coffee and take the builder next,granting him first choice of any important buildings and perhaps even denying you the one that you want.This may not happen but the timing is also important.

Which is why you don't use them for shipping advantage, you use them for trade advantage. Once they are broken, then you start shipping the product. You now have someone who was frantically trying to break you monopoly working WITH you to maintain the ship duopoly. He's no longer the enemy.

Using monopolies for trading advantage is useful in the early game.Towards the end game,they would serve well as a shipping advantage when everyone else is forced to compete for any little space on the remaining ships.(unless they also have a wharf)I tried that many times and it worked well.Sometimes,it may also be possible that your opponents set up their own monopoly and get a wharf to neutralize your monopoly advantage.For example,while you lock a tobacco ship,he will then lock a coffee ship that you are unable to access.He then uses his wharf to ship his remaining goods.

 
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Jim Campbell
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The harbor is used for a diversified and not specialized strategy.The wharf is more appropriate for that.

The harbor is appropriate for almost any reasonable strategy, regardless of how diversified one's goods are. It makes *points*, so if you're shipping more than a little bit it's a great buy before the endgame.

My experience was that even when I got a monopoly early,another player would also establish his own monopoly and so when I sold tobacco for example,he will also sell his coffee and so any advantage I got was also minimal.

It's a game with 2 or more opponents, so evaluating a move as weak because it doesn't gain advantage over absolutely all opponents is flawed. It's common for the trader to be chosen by someone who makes the same amount as one of the other players, but considerable more than the rest. That's still a good move, since there will likely be opportunities to gain advantage at other times.

Clearing the trading house for everyone may work for or against you.While you use up one role action simply just to clear the trading house,you would have freed up your opponents to take other roles that may benefit them even more.Of course,if the trader card had some $ on it or you use a market bonus on your corn,it would at least be worth something.

The solo-trade move is a very big move in the first half of the game. Even if it's only for 2 doubloons total (bonus doubloon + trader bonus with corn, or corn + small market + trader bonus) that's approximately a 3-6 VP solo move. No one else gets anything during the move. In *addition* to that, it clears the trade house so that one can then trade another high-value good on the following turn. As long as one's trading position is reasonably good, that's also a benefit.

Jim
 
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Jared Heng
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Yes,I know that any building (except any "blacklisted" ones) is useful in the game.Of course,the extent of their usefulness depends also on one's strategy.


It's a game with 2 or more opponents, so evaluating a move as weak because it doesn't gain advantage over absolutely all opponents is flawed.

That was not what I meant.In the context of selling a monopoly crop to gain a solo selling advantage,that reasoning by itself may not be a good one because others can also sell lower value crops at about the same price with the market bonus.I guess it's just a play on the word "advantage".If advantage means being the only one who can make money early,then it may not be true.Of course,I would do the same as you mentioned in a real game.

The solo-trade move is a very big move in the first half of the game. Even if it's only for 2 doubloons total (bonus doubloon + trader bonus with corn, or corn + small market + trader bonus) that's approximately a 3-6 VP solo move. No one else gets anything during the move. In *addition* to that, it clears the trade house so that one can then trade another high-value good on the following turn. As long as one's trading position is reasonably good, that's also a benefit.

That was why I said it could both work for or against the player.Then again,it may not happen easily if one's opponents can anticipate that.
 
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