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Subject: First game with 4 players. rss

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Ryan Mayes
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I am playing Battlestar Galactica this weekend. It will be the first time for all of us.

I thought I would have 5 or 6 players but it turns out there are only going to be 4 of us. I wanted to know if I should try to dig up extra players or will 4 still provide a great experience? Also, is there anything I should know about a four player game going in?

Thanks.
 
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Mindy G
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5 would definitely be optimal, but 4 is still a good game, in my opinion. We usually have to play with 4. Someone will probably say not to use the Sympathizer, but since it's your first game, I think you should experience it as designed and then later you can start making adjustments more to your liking. What that is, if you haven't read the rules, is a balancing mechanism for the 4 and 6 player game. If the humans are doing too good at the Sleeper phase one person turns into a sorta half cylon, and if they are not, then they get to keep another human but they end up in the Brig, which can be hard to get out of it.
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Everybody has their own preferences, and some are generally more loved by the BSG community as a whole then others (yes, 5p games for one), but I'd say just try it as is. If you don't like something try other variants (e.g. FFG has an official no-smympathizer variant). Some preferences may be a bit "out there" (e.g. I ran into people who only play BSG with 5p, where as other people say you should only play your first game of BSG after you've played Shadows Over Camelot before, so you'll better appreciate BSG for what it is :rollseyes: ) that it's better that your group develops their own.

BTW, I am in the camp that prefers to play BSG with 5p, but unlike others, I only prefer 5p slightly more. I'm waay happy playing BSG with any number of players (3 - 6), and 7p with the Pegasus exp.


http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_minisite_sec.asp?eidm...

http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/ffg_content/Battlestar_Gal...
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Todd Warnken
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Our group normally plays BSG with four and it works fine with no modifications.
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Darren Nakamura
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I'd say if at all possible, try to get a fifth. I can half agree with playing the game as originally designed in order to form your own opinion (regarding the Sympathizer), but as is it does add another rule that players will have to be considering while swamped with all the other troubles that first time players have. Getting a fifth player fixes that, AND makes for a more interesting time as a Cylon.
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Robert Stewart
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It's a better game with 4 players who are all keen to play than with 5 players, one of whom doesn't really want to - three hours is wearing enough if you are having fun...

Becoming a lame Cylon through Sympathiser is kinda the worst of all possible worlds - you miss out on getting to time your reveal, you don't get a reveal power nor a Super Crisis, and you can't activate the Cylon Fleet. On the other hand, the sympathiser mechanic does improve the game balance for 4/6 players, and, from what I hear, none of the official alternative mechanics are entirely convincing either - Cylon Leader and Sympathetic Cylon both need the Pegasus expansion, and rely on the (reportedly flawed) Agenda cards, while No Symp requires a seemingly aritrary dial adjustment (and lets the Cylon draw a third skill card on their turn).

I'd suggest playing it as written first time out - unless you're metagaming by manipulating the dials to force the Sympathiser to stay on the humans' side, the added rules only come up for the player who actually gets dealt the card (and whoever's keeping track of the rules), so it doesn't add significant complexity.
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rmsgrey wrote:
It's a better game with 4 players who are all keen to play than with 5 players, one of whom doesn't really want to - three hours is wearing enough if you are having fun...

Becoming a lame Cylon through Sympathiser is kinda the worst of all possible worlds - you miss out on getting to time your reveal, you don't get a reveal power nor a Super Crisis, and you can't activate the Cylon Fleet. On the other hand, the sympathiser mechanic does improve the game balance for 4/6 players, and, from what I hear, none of the official alternative mechanics are entirely convincing either - Cylon Leader and Sympathetic Cylon both need the Pegasus expansion, and rely on the (reportedly flawed) Agenda cards, while No Symp requires a seemingly aritrary dial adjustment (and lets the Cylon draw a third skill card on their turn).
Newbies won't be able to get over this, but once I tried out being a cylon a few times, it actual does make for an exciting challenge to do more with less. Super crisis cards are for many intents and purposes, as flawed as Agenda cards.... Massive Assault has singlehandedly won more cylon victories than I can think of, and people complain how Human Fleet wasn't used enough.... well, there ya go! It's an artificial way to push that location on people, but the whole sympathizer thing was artificial to begin with.

I'd say the other annoying thing that people have with the game is simply by beating the odds, they're moreso cylons or humans across many of their games... one or the other. Hell, these people choose Boomer/Baltar just so they can get their "cylon" on, but STILL end up human anyuways Just the nature of the game is all.
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Ryan Mayes
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Thanks everyone. What all of you has said makes sense. I am going to stick with 4 and play the rules as written. Thanks for your suggestions. I'm getting pumped for my first game of BSG.
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Mindy G
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We will expect a sesssion report by Monday!
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