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Subject: Early turn victories rss

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K Peterson
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I've owned the Dune boardgame for 10 years now, and have only been able to sneak in a game a few times. One of the last times I played (5 years ago) was with a group of friends who were new to the boardgame. So, we were quite inexperienced to the strategies of the game - and the result of our first game was very unexpected.

The Harkonnen player took a very aggressive stance in Turn 1 - he drop-shipped tokens onto an available sietch, and ornithoptered another group of tokens over to Arakeen. As the Atreides, I prepared myself for battle, while the Spacing Guild was the only faction that had the opportunity to contest his control of the sietch. Well, the battles both went the Harkonnen's way, and we were all stunned when we discovered that he had won the game - in the first turn.

I'm not sure, now, if we'd made a mistake during play, or if it was just a perfect storm opportunity that allowed his victory. It was pretty disappointing, as you can imagine. (On the spot, all of the players suggested a house rule to up the victory condition to 4 strongholds).

I'm curious how much of a fluke this scenario is. How likely is it for the tide to swing one player's way, really early in the game, leading to a solitary victory in just the first few turns?
 
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Glenn McMaster
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Excluding the Guild and Fremen special conditions, the most likely solo victories seem to be the BG residual and Harkonnen on T1. So your experience was mainstream fluky. Not an expected event, but if in the realm of the unexpected, but pretty much average. One great trick by the Harkonnen is to claim spice poverty before going for it, hoping that the others will forget that he collects spice as he kills opposing leaders.
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Matt Smith
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We have early victories (turn 1 or 2) happen a number of times, especially with the Harkonnen (and sometimes the Atreides) because they can both do exactly what you just described, shipping into one stronghold while moving into another. Add to that the Harkonnen's general fist-full of cards, and you've got a pretty dangerous pitbull ready to charge out of the gates right at the start.

Upping the SOLO victory conditions to 4 strongholds? That's pretty extreme. He had a stroke of good luck where the stars lined right up, so this sort of knee-jerk reaction, well, is pretty silly. You will simply never see a solo victory if you change that. Just sayin.

You didn't say, but how many players were in the game?
 
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Michael Marvosh
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krp471 wrote:
I've owned the Dune boardgame for 10 years now, and have only been able to sneak in a game a few times. One of the last times I played (5 years ago) was with a group of friends who were new to the boardgame. So, we were quite inexperienced to the strategies of the game - and the result of our first game was very unexpected.

The Harkonnen player took a very aggressive stance in Turn 1 - he drop-shipped tokens onto an available sietch, and ornithoptered another group of tokens over to Arakeen. As the Atreides, I prepared myself for battle, while the Spacing Guild was the only faction that had the opportunity to contest his control of the sietch. Well, the battles both went the Harkonnen's way, and we were all stunned when we discovered that he had won the game - in the first turn.

I'm not sure, now, if we'd made a mistake during play, or if it was just a perfect storm opportunity that allowed his victory. It was pretty disappointing, as you can imagine. (On the spot, all of the players suggested a house rule to up the victory condition to 4 strongholds).

I'm curious how much of a fluke this scenario is. How likely is it for the tide to swing one player's way, really early in the game, leading to a solitary victory in just the first few turns?


Disappointing for you. Awesome for the Harkonnen. Bragging rights for years.

Nothing wrong happened here. Solo wins in this game usually come as a surprise to somebody. They're very tough to accomplish if everyone's being vigilant. Whomever is going last in the round is a BIG threat, so watch out for this kind of stuff.
 
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K Peterson
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We had four players in the game: Atreides, Harkonnen, Emperor, and Fremen.
 
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Dan The Man
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Fewer (than 6) people means an early victory is more likely...
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Dan The Man
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krp471 wrote:
We had four players in the game: Atreides, Harkonnen, Emperor, and Fremen.


But you mentioned Spacing Guild...
 
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Clay Peterson
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Having only 4 players makes this more likely, if Harkonen went last in player order so he could move nine troops to arakeen in that first move it would also make this victory more likely.

That said it is a terrifying thing to do. If you lose a large number of troops early in the game, when alliances come around you will get a crappy ally. At least with my gaming group, and the fact that solo victories have almost never happened. (I am going to brag that I managed to pull one off as the guild in turn 3 once) but this can only occur if the other players make mistakes and don't see it coming.

When we play the first couple turns are played fairly conservatively because everyone is jockeying to be in the strongest position for the first nexus.
 
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Bruno
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Had the luck of getting the turn 1 victory once, with Harkonnen of course. Got a good deal on treachery cards with at least a weapon and a 'Hajj', which allowed me the luxury of even attacking a softer target than Arrakeen.

The Harkonnen can be formidable in the first turn. Lots of troops on location, one fortress, ornithopters, double up on treachery cards and no shortage of traitors.

It was one of my best gaming moments ever, especially as it came immediately on the back of a turn 4 win which prompted the group to "play another one" as we had plenty time left. Needless to say, they didn't want to do a third. laugh
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j kim
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Haj card is a favorite for an early game upset.
 
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K Peterson
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Brainfart on my part. That should have been Spacing Guild instead of Fremen.
 
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Tom zieveraar
Belgium
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I tried a similar tactic with a 2player game, I was Harkonnen, my friend Atreides. Ofcourse, then you do need 4 strongholds but I was determined to boot the Atreides out of Arrakeen immediately to restrict their movements. Bad luck of leader's choice as I used the one traitor I had against the Atreides, my friend had an easy pick as he used the one leader he knew couldn't be a traitor. (I had a weapon to kill him, but with my traitor that didn't happen ofcourse)

I lost 15 tokens on the first turn, needless to say I didn't make it.

It's a risky strategy, but if it works, you do seem to be taking a strong position.
 
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