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Subject: Glass Beads For The Win rss

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dan schnake
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That's too much dough unless it's murder. And if it's murder, it's not enough.
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Whilst demoing a different game in the Z-Man booth at Gen Con, I noticed Ascending Empires. Loved the idea of it.

Did some quick browsing on BGG about the game with my iPhone. The comments about the board pieces fitting together gave me some pause, but... had to buy it anyway.

The board I received had a better fit than the one I saw being demo'd. It lays pretty flat, but yes, seams are seams. I did a bit of work getting some pieces to lay down better, but I didn't have to resort to an exacto knife. Despite the nice fit, there's no getting around the seams.

For the small ships, crossing some seams just takes you off course, or worse, flips your ship up on its side and rolls it right off the board. Kinda humorous, but not what I wanted.

More iPhone browsing, and I followed a suggestion in this forum. I purchased glass beads in the right 4 colors. $7. I've pimped a few games, but I can't recall anything I've done with such a good payoff. The ships slide smooth and true. Highly recommended.
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David Stahler Jr.
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Definitely elevated this game to a whole new level. They have some weight and requires a fine touch, but they glide nicely and look beautiful on the board.
 
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Phisto Nation
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danman wrote:
I purchased glass beads in the right 4 colors. $7.


Size, weight...where did you buy them? Just curious due to your reported success with play.
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dan schnake
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That's too much dough unless it's murder. And if it's murder, it's not enough.
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Bought 'em at Gen Con. The brand is "Eldritch Gems" and a number of rpg and gaming supply shops sell them.

It could be that any old glass bead will do, but this particular brand is a darn good match on color and size to the small ships in AE.

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David Stahler Jr.
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I bought the classic Chessex game stones (@$2 a set, I think). They too are pretty much the same size as the ships. They have a flat side that allows them to sit solidly on the board with enough of a rounded edge to glide over the board seams without disruption.
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Phisto Nation
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danman wrote:
The brand is "Eldritch Gems" and a number of rpg and gaming supply shops sell them.


Wheelockian wrote:
I bought the classic Chessex game stones (@$2 a set, I think).


Cool deal, I'll look into both vendors and buy (maybe both) to see what fits for my groupies. Thanks!
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Andrew Bogenhagen
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Has anybody considered incorporating these into a variant. My proposition is that you start the game with the unpredictable wooden discs, and then as a reward for gaining some level on the tech tree you gain the tech breakthrough that gives you acces to ships that handle better and are less prone to navigational problems that send them hurtling into the unknown. I would suggest giving this benefit early on the tree, probably as an additional benefit to getting all first level techs, or to buff up whatever level 2 tech the groups deems to be most underpowered. It would let you pimp your game, and give things a bit more flavor at the same time. Whadda you think?
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Ian Cooper
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I really like the idea.

Another simple way to do this would be to just start all players out with the normal two wooden starship discs. But all new starships that are brought into play from building cities will be the shiny glass bead starships. Players will always have the original two wooden starships, so this turns the glass bead starships into a unique resource without having to change any rules.
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David Tinney
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I have to agree here I use round glass beads and they work fantastic! They glide smoothly and do not hesitate over the seams. Not once has a seam bothered the ships for me since I switched.
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