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A Few Acres of Snow» Forums » Variants

Subject: Countering ultra-thin deck abuse rss

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Mike Smith
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Apologies if anybody else has suggested this as the core of a cure for the over-efficiency of the British ultra-thin deck strategy:
Don't allow a player to draw right back to 5 if the Draw deck runs out beforehand. Only shuffle at the end of the player turn.
This penalizes a really thin deck without affecting anything else in the game.
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Ray
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Another way of wording it:

The check for reshuffle cant happen "mid-action" and the drawing of cards for home support is during action thus it can only draw cards in the deck up to what available and cant trigger/utilize a reshuffle.

or another way:

Home support can only draw cards that are in the draw pile at the time it was played.
 
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Mike Smith
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No, thats not quite what I am suggesting. I am suggesting that at the end of your turn, when you refill your hand, you only get to pick up what is currently in the Draw pile. Only then do you shuffle the Discards to make a new Draw pile, which could not then be drawn upon till the next turn. The great thing about this is that it is simple and the thinner your deck the more often it will hit you.

The same would apply if the Draw pile runs out during a Home Support action i.e you could not draw any further cards till the next turn.

This rule might leave a thinnish deck quite efficient, but will make an ultra-thin one (such as is necessary for the Halifax Hammer) totally inefficient.
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Ray
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Ah I see. you are proposing a separate phase, a shuffle phase. that occurs after the fill your hand phase -- and is the only time shuffling occurs.

Pity the guy that uses his whole hand with only 1 card left in the draw pile.

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Mark Mitchell
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Mantuanwar wrote:
Apologies if anybody else has suggested this as the core of a cure for the over-efficiency of the British ultra-thin deck strategy:
Don't allow a player to draw right back to 5 if the Draw deck runs out beforehand. Only shuffle at the end of the player turn.
This penalizes a really thin deck without affecting anything else in the game.

Seems like a good idea.
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Clyde W
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Seems so but isn't.
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Mike Smith
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Tell me why not then, you tease....

It hits in one simple rule the over-efficiency of both the Home Support card and the ultra-thin deck used in the Halifax Hammer. It also aids France at the beginning (10 cards in deck compared to 7). Whats the objection? Does'nt do enough to penalise British or does too much to help the French?
 
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William Boykin
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For BJ.....
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Match play the game.

Play once as the French, and once as the Brits. Combine the two scores.

Easy Peasey.

Darilian
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Eugene
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And if each side wins once as the British with a Quebec siege?
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Charlie Theel
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Even if you can score that somehow, who would want to play a game and switch sides where there's one dominant strategy. It'd get boring fast.
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Clyde W
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Mantuanwar wrote:
Tell me why not then, you tease....


Quote:
Pity the guy that uses his whole hand with only 1 card left in the draw pile.
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Mike Smith
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I don't pity him. He is probably a Brit using the Halfax Hammer. It won't hit someone with a thicker deck very often. Plus you can optimise your previous actions so you are not left wanting e.g. draft rather than use cards. Two left in the draw pile - I only use two cards so I will still have a hand of 5 (unless I am willing to go into next turn with less).
Its meant to penalise the thinner decks so its not much use if it does not impose some kind of crimp on you. To my mind the good thing about it is the thinner the deck the more you suffer. A nice counterbalance to the problems of a bloated deck.
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Mike Smith
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Any suggestion to cure the problem needs playtesting...
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Charlie Theel
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This just seems to disrupt the flow of play too much. It's almost as if you're punished for cycling through your deck quickly - which shouldn't be the case.

For instance, this will hit the Brit several times in the early going of the game. It seems a bit awkward and inconsistant, having a much larger affect on play in addition to nerfing the HH.

I think Home support first, delayed draft, fortify Louisberg is a better option personally.

Or, using the supply idea posted elsewhere so that you must maintain supply by sea. A change like that seems cleaner and keeps the flow of play more consistent.
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Christopher Dearlove
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Mantuanwar wrote:
I don't pity him. He is probably a Brit using the Halfax Hammer.

Or any Briton on turn 2 of the game with two cards in draw pile, having used three cards on turn 1. Or just any player towards the end of a deck.
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Mike Smith
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Yes Chris, so the British player needs to build his deck not keep it ultra-thin! Thats the fundamental problem that has emerged - the HH strategy is a killer because an ultra-thin deck is too efficient at money-raising, and because coupled with Home Support you can get newly drafted military cards straight into the hand and into action without ambush. None of this makes any particular historical sense, its just a function of the deck-building mechanism that the game employs.

My suggested change knocks that on the head in a simple way. It rewards the thicker deck, and yet the thicker deck remains an unwieldy beast in other ways. You don't have to use more cards than there are currently sitting in the Draw pile. You may want to, and indeed still can, but will have a card deficit in the next hand if you do.

So the British are going to be slowed a little at start while they build their deck. I think thats a good thing, provided it does not favour the French too much.

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Christopher Dearlove
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Mantuanwar wrote:
Yes Chris, so the British player needs to build his deck not keep it ultra-thin!

Any first British action that uses three cards - including ones you want to encourage such as settling, hits the need to immediately shuffle. So it's a bad idea.
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Mike Smith
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Chris, why does it matter that the British are a bit crimped at the beginning? Thats the point! They will still have 3 actions before the French have their second. If they draft or settle they will start increasing their deck. I want them to increase their deck because it nerfs the HH and also makes for a more dynamic and interesting game.
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Mike Smith
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I have playtested this once now and I felt it worked well. British victory on points by 1 point. Lots of long-running sieges (Albany, twice at Port Royal, Louisbourg), of which only one succeeded, a British capture of Port Royal.
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Christopher Dearlove
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Mantuanwar wrote:
Chris, why does it matter that the British are a bit crimped at the beginning? Thats the point!

No, the point is to crimp them from doing what you don't want them to do. Also crimping them when they go in the direction you do want them to go is a bad idea.

Quote:
If they draft or settle they will start increasing their deck.

But if they settle (using three cards) then they will instantly hit the 'fix' you are suggesting.

Anyway, it's academic in one sense. It's not actually important if you or I think it's a good idea, but rather if Martin does. I'll make you a prediction though. Martin won't go for any change that disrupts a British opening that settles on turn one from playing a normal second turn with five cards.
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Mike Smith
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But in the meantime I like the game and want to play it.
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Mike Smith
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Played another game using this variant. Another British win, ending after a long struggle with the fall of Quebec. It was an open game with both sides making use of Governor to trim their deck back after settling.

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Mike Smith
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I have playtested this a few times now and am pretty convinced it does the trick. Its my standard way of playing until I see a better suggestion.
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Gustavo Vazquez
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And if a third person stays behind the British player to hit him in the head with a hammer every time he tries to do the Hammer? shake

This strategy doesn't seem to work. If the British player is smart, he can build his deck so he will always buy 4/5 cards before the pile runs out.

AND it would be extremely boring seeing the players counting the drawn deck every time it gets near the end, so the could see how many cards it's worth spending. The game stops being fluid.

AND it can be terrible for the blameless French player. Buying just 1 or 2 cards is a punishment that doesn't make sense, it's too strong.

Better use the (real) hammer...
 
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Mike Smith
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I am not sure you understand the proposal, or the need for it. Its to stop the British player making a ton of money from an ultra-thin deck, and to stop him (or the French) using the Home Support card to draft a card and get it into the hand and play it in the same turn. My suggestion stops both in a simple way.
 
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