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Subject: 2 player game for experienced players rss

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Jonathan Powell
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My wife and I have played RftG 30+ as a two player. We have never used the 2 player variant(for experienced players) where each player uses 9 action cards and chooses two of them.

Just wondering how most people play and enjoy RftG as a two-player game. Standard rules or variant for experienced players? Which do you prefer and why?

By the way we only have the base game and don't plan on buying any of the expansions (if only I could just get the cards and extra start worlds!)
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Brian McCormick
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My wife and I have played RftG 100s of times in the 18 months we've owned it. We haven't used the 2-role-per-turn variant a single time (nor do we plan to any time soon). Restricting the game to 1-role-per-turn maintains that light tension of trying to guess what your opponent will do and hoping to capitalize off their choice.

I'd highly recommend getting the expansions. If you've already sunk 30 games into the base set, then why not get the first expansion? My wife and I use the 1st and 2nd expansion, but we haven't even bought the third.
 
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Both seem fine, but as I've gotten used to the 2p adv. game, that's what's natural to me. Picking III + IV$, I+1 + II/III, or III + V are some of the nice combos to abuse. P/C works twice as fast since you can pick both of them yourself. Double explore seems desparate, but fun at the same time. I also play 3p to 6p games, so I try to switch away from 2p games just so I don't get too used to being able to I and III in the same phase, or be wary of settling a windfall world when I have a IV power for VP.

AFAIK, there never was a variant to play 2p with just 7 action cards and picking one per round, but I'll have to check the rules on this later on.


Hell, I've seen someone one of my groups insist that if we play with 3p, everyone should get to choose 2 action cards as well from all 9 of them.
 
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Brian McCormick
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ackmondual wrote:
AFAIK, there never was a variant to play 2p with just 7 action cards and picking one per round, but I'll have to check the rules on this later on.

The rulebook notes that you can use the additional cards for the "Advanced" 2p game, but that new players should not use them right away, iirc.
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Jeff Chamberlain
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I've played race many times, and when we play 2 player, we always play with the advanced 2p rules.

That said, i hate playing the game 2 player because I find the game boringly easy when you can pick two actions per round. Playing that way doesn't really teach you how to play the game in larger groups either because the obvious strategies in cases where you can pick two actions in a round just don't work when you are picking 1 action per round.
 
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Piper Jackson
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Yep, in regular 2p, you only choose 1 action per round. Just try it out on Keldon It is slower moving than 2pa (where you play two actions per round), and there are some subtle differences, but for the most part, switching back and forth between them is not so hard.

In short, don't be afraid of trying two player advanced if you already are comfortable with the game. Many people consider it to be the best way to play. Certainly, most online games are played that way. And if you haven't tried playing regular 2p, it's an interesting change from 2pa, especially when played with all the expansions.
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Jeff Thompson
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I would like to add that picking 2 phases in no way diminishes the importance of thinking about what phases your opponent is going to play.

You have to be careful during the turn. Not only is guessing your opponent's phases an important part of the game, but also playing the turn based on what phases your opponent picks. I think this aspect is heightened with the pick 2.

I can't imagine playing 2 player with only picking 1. It seems like it would be too easy to figure out what your opponent is doing after a turn or 2. Or at the very least it simply won't matter.

I've found that in 2 player games using the "pick 2" rule, games last anywhere from 6 to 8 turns. It is truly a race.
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Bartjan S
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Since we started playing the experienced 2p-game, we never went back again. I truly believe the 2p-experienced version makes the 2p-game much more strategic and tactical to play.

With 2 actions to choose each turn, you are more able to plan ahead you way to victory, and as well you are better able to anticipate on the actions you think your opponent will choose.

I might even go so far to say, that we enjoy an 2p-experienced play even more than a normal 3p-game.

So to conclude, I would DEFINITELY recommended playing the 2p-experienced rules at least once!
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Jeff Chamberlain
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The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.
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Chris Berger
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Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.


Yeah, but the other thing about the 2p Advanced game is that it's easy to fill up your tableau quickly to keep a produce/consume chain from racking up too many VP's. Really, it's just a faster game overall, but not inherently unbalanced compared to 2p Basic (or Standard, or whatever it's called - I don't want to call it Standard because 2pa is much more common).
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Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.
Many of the player counts are different. We have 2pa. Then there's 3p where there's typically an "odd man out" (e.g. 2p will do P/C while the 3rd primarily builds cards, or vice versa). 4p there's more "symmetry". 5p and 6p, I find myself unable to keep up much with anything going on across the table (like you're playing 7 Wonders ).
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Jeff Thompson
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Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.


6 to 8 turns. If you are playing 2pa games that last 9 turns or longer, you are not playing fast enough.

Setting up a "powerful" produce/consume engine and then employing it in 6 to 8 turns is not easy. It's still only 1 path to victory, and certainly not a path that presents itself in every game. If that's all you have, you probably won't win (unless you get all 24VP). Key cards for this are the "Comet Zone" type cards where you draw a card when you produce. Unless the x2/produce combo grabs 8VP per turn or so, it isn't going to win.

 
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Jeff Chamberlain
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Tompy wrote:
Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.


6 to 8 turns. If you are playing 2pa games that last 9 turns or longer, you are not playing fast enough.

Setting up a "powerful" produce/consume engine and then employing it in 6 to 8 turns is not easy. It's still only 1 path to victory, and certainly not a path that presents itself in every game. If that's all you have, you probably won't win (unless you get all 24VP). Key cards for this are the "Comet Zone" type cards where you draw a card when you produce. Unless the x2/produce combo grabs 8VP per turn or so, it isn't going to win.



I never said that was all you have and that it was an easy way to win. My point is that it is an option that doesn't even exist without the 2-action-per-player rule.
 
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G K
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Another vote here for 2pa. At the very least give it a try! With 2pa you are still considering your opponents plays just as much, but everything seems to unfold quicker. It's tough to go back to playing regular 2p.

Also, I think that "advanced" is perhaps kind of a misnomer even though it's described as such in the rules. Guessing it's only called "advanced" so that you don't try to learn/teach with 2pa... once a player has got even a few games so that they understand all the rules and mechanics there is nothing more difficult about playing or understanding the 2pa game.

(edit) correction: It's been brought to my attention that the rules don't even use the terms "advanced" or "variant" to describe the 2 player game (for experienced players)- this is mostly BGG slang for it I guess. All the more reason not to be afraid to try it!
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Bartjan S
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It's a RACE! And as with every sort of race, you want to use the best possible engine, to get you to the finish line as quickly as possible.
 
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My wife and I played one or two games without the advanced rules but never looked back after that. Almost 100 plays later we're still enjoying it a lot - it is our favourite 2 player game.
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Serge Levert
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The main benefit to 2pa is that games are nearly twice as quick, so you can play more games! It's also pretty much the standard way to play 2 players, you don't hear very much talk about ppl playing 2p with 1 role card each. There's just not that many ppl that play it that way once they've tasted 2pa.

Tompy wrote:
It seems like it would be too easy to figure out what your opponent is doing after a turn or 2. Or at the very least it simply won't matter.

Yeah, phase choice in 2pa is as or more interesting than 2p-3p+ because there are more combinations possible. E.g., in regular 2p, your opponent can only be playing 1 of 7 possibilities. In 2pa, he can be playing any 1 of 18 interesting combinations. 2pa is quite different from 2p/3p+, and it is interestingly different.

Klintus Fang wrote:
I never said that was all you have and that it was an easy way to win. My point is that it is an option that doesn't even exist without the 2-action-per-player rule.

IMO engines are played very similarly in 2pa vs 2p regular/3p+. 2pa just condenses the produce turn, then consume turn, into 1 turn. The only real difference is that you can't double produce in 2pa, but that's a very advanced play that most people don't even know exists. Not to mention you would almost never double produce in 2p, it's more of a 3p+ play anyway.
 
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Chris Berger
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entranced wrote:
The only real difference is that you can't double produce in 2pa, but that's a very advanced play that most people don't even know exists. Not to mention you would almost never double produce in 2p, it's more of a 3p+ play anyway.


Seems like more of a Puerto Rico play to me. Do you mean that you produce again hoping that someone else picks Consume on the second turn? I can see that, but if they don't it's kind of a waste...
 
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Serge Levert
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arkayn wrote:
Seems like more of a Puerto Rico play to me. Do you mean that you produce again hoping that someone else picks Consume on the second turn? I can see that, but if they don't it's kind of a waste...

Yeah, but it's generally used near the end of the game, when you have just produced, expect someone else to consume, and know the game will end on builds on the next turn. You can't x2 - V - x2, but you can V - x2 to get a half-crank this turn and end with an x2 on the final turn.
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entranced wrote:
In 2pa, he can be playing any 1 of 18 interesting combinations.

I count 23 combinations; maybe you mean that 5 of these are uninteresting?
7 unique phase choices (E+1,E+5,D,S,C:T,Cx2,P) choose 2 = 21 + D/D + S/S.

(After thinking: Let me guess, E+1/x is not interestingly different from E+5/x)
entranced wrote:
The only real difference is that you can't double produce in 2pa

You can't double consume either. Or you can, but it is 33% slower.
C/P; x/C; C/P etc.
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mumushanshi wrote:
entranced wrote:
In 2pa, he can be playing any 1 of 18 interesting combinations.

I count 23 combinations; maybe you mean that 5 of these are uninteresting?
7 unique phase choices (E+1,E+5,D,S,C:T,Cx2,P) choose 2 = 21 + D/D + S/S.

(After thinking: Let me guess, E+1/x is not interestingly different from E+5/x)

Nah you are right, 23 combos. I screwed up the fact there's 2 different explores.
 
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Jeff Thompson
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Klintus Fang wrote:
Tompy wrote:
Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.


6 to 8 turns. If you are playing 2pa games that last 9 turns or longer, you are not playing fast enough.

Setting up a "powerful" produce/consume engine and then employing it in 6 to 8 turns is not easy. It's still only 1 path to victory, and certainly not a path that presents itself in every game. If that's all you have, you probably won't win (unless you get all 24VP). Key cards for this are the "Comet Zone" type cards where you draw a card when you produce. Unless the x2/produce combo grabs 8VP per turn or so, it isn't going to win.



I never said that was all you have and that it was an easy way to win. My point is that it is an option that doesn't even exist without the 2-action-per-player rule.
 
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mumushanshi wrote:

You can't double consume either. Or you can, but it is 33% slower.
C/P; x/C; C/P etc.


Well, picking IV$ and IVx2 in the same round may not be what some people think as "double consume", but it still counts.
 
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Piper Jackson
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$/x2 is a rare play, but every so often it's the right move. For example, if you realize calling V is helping your opponent too much, you can crank your engine one last time while still filling up your hand to call builds on the next turn. Not a combo I'd usually consider or suggest, but it can be strong depending on the situation.
 
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Jeff Chamberlain
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Tompy wrote:
Klintus Fang wrote:
Tompy wrote:
Klintus Fang wrote:
The thing I find frustrating about the 2p advanced game is that it is easy to setup produce/consume chains to a powerful effect on your score, while if there are more than 2 players, that is far more difficult (and dangerous). In that respect, i feel like 2p advanced simply is a different game.


6 to 8 turns. If you are playing 2pa games that last 9 turns or longer, you are not playing fast enough.

Setting up a "powerful" produce/consume engine and then employing it in 6 to 8 turns is not easy. It's still only 1 path to victory, and certainly not a path that presents itself in every game. If that's all you have, you probably won't win (unless you get all 24VP). Key cards for this are the "Comet Zone" type cards where you draw a card when you produce. Unless the x2/produce combo grabs 8VP per turn or so, it isn't going to win.



I never said that was all you have and that it was an easy way to win. My point is that it is an option that doesn't even exist without the 2-action-per-player rule.


Easy to set them up != easy to win.


My point is that if you have decent consume power and worlds to feed them, you can do an end-game run of consumex2/produce that you can then rinse repeat which can be difficult for your opponent to out run if he doesn't have a chain of very good cards ready to play or get very lucky with his own draws. That is a very viable and often powerful way to close the game when you have 2 actions per turn if your consume powers are good ones. In multiplayer, you can't make an end game run like that which repeats because chaining consume and produce is just too slow with one action per turn.

I understand that 2 actions at a time speed things up and there is nothing wrong with that. But it strengthens the value of consume powers because of their end game utility in ways that just doesn't happen in multiplayer, which I play more often.

More generally it makes for less interaction in my experience because though it is still important to predict what your opponent is doing, it is far less necessary to try and time your own actions to feed off your opponent's because with two actions you can more easily feed yourself. The ability to power your own consumption engine in the end game is just an example. Since I usually play multiplayer, and enjoy the aspect that requires you to chain off your opponents, I find 2pa to be interesting but less so. Still a good quick game though.

That isn't a problem.
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