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Eminent Domain» Forums » Variants

Subject: Could this help 4 player rss

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Ross Lewis
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Ok as you would of noticed in a previous thread that i feel 4 player is to quick.
I have found that if you have more than 1 person going strong for warfare or colonize the game ends much to soon and the stacks deplete very quickly.
I thought maybe making the end requirements to 3 stacks might help but thought of perhaps a better way.

When you start the game everyone goes as quickly as possible to flip planets thus making players focus on warfare and colonize for the first few turns at least.
What if your starting planet is already flipped with perhaps one other planet (equal in value as each others random planet) also flipped.

This would than give you the options straight away of either Tech,Produce, Warfare and Colonize

This i hope would help in slowing the game down a tad and given every one the chance of exploring other strategies. I havnt tried this yet but wondered what you all thought
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Noah Sager
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Call me crazy, but an "expansion" with nothing but extra role cards and a sheet of influence counters would be great.
 
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David Etherton
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Well, anything that will help the game work better for your group is worth trying, but it's usually pretty straightforward to flip a planet on your second turn's action depending on your opening hand.

The ways to do it are detailed in other threads, but here are a few options:

1. If you have two colonize cards and politics, toss the politics for colonize, call colonize, tuck two, keep the last colonize in your hand for next turn's action.

2. If you have one colonize card and politics, toss the politics for colonize, call colonize, tuck two, and toss everything to guarantee you pick up your second colonize during cleanup for next turn's action.

3. If you have politics and warfare, toss the politics for warfare, call warfare, gather two armies, and keep the extra warfare to attack on your next turn's action.

Depending on what else ends up in your hand, you can often pull off research for your role on second turn.

One of the keys to this game is always trying to settle or attack as an action instead of a role -- it's more efficient.

-Dave
 
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David Etherton
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RequiemX wrote:
Call me crazy, but an "expansion" with nothing but extra role cards and a sheet of influence counters would be great.


Find three other people who love the game, buy an extra copy of the game, each person pays for a quarter of it, and divvy up the role cards and tiles. (About $7 per person if somebody gets it online with free shipping)

Of course you'll miss out on whatever cool new tech cards Seth is cooking up.

-Dave
 
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Chad Miller
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Quote:
Well, anything that will help the game work better for your group is worth trying, but it's usually pretty straightforward to flip a planet on your second turn's action depending on your opening hand.


I think OP's point is that if you aren't outright forced to spend your first turn or two doing this, a higher proportion of the game will be "interesting" turns.

Quote:
Call me crazy, but an "expansion" with nothing but extra role cards and a sheet of influence counters would be great.


I hope any expansion has extra tech cards. It's pretty annoying to have the same starter as someone else and have that someone else buy all the exact tech cards you would want because you're later in the rotation. My group has already houseruled 3p to have no duplicate starters and we outright hate 4p right now.
 
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Seth Jaffee
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size38waist wrote:
What if your starting planet is already flipped with perhaps one other planet (equal in value as each others random planet) also flipped.

I'll note that this is the same as turn 2 or 3 after you flip your starting planet, but it appears that your group does not start researching after flipping your starting planet (it sounds like you keep surveying and Colonizing/Warfaring).

It's also viable to go for a planet from the deck first, as opposed to your starting planet, so that you get a benefit like a symbol or hand size.

If you really want a longer game, I recommend trying the 3-stack approach. My biggest concern with that is that it doesn't encourage getting better at the game as much. Instead it rewards inefficient play by allowing it to compete with more efficient play. But if everybody prefers it, then by all means, you could play that way
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T K
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sedjtroll wrote:
If you really want a longer game, I recommend trying the 3-stack approach. My biggest concern with that is that it doesn't encourage getting better at the game as much. Instead it rewards inefficient play by allowing it to compete with more efficient play. But if everybody prefers it, then by all means, you could play that way


I don't really understand what you mean here. It seems like in this game you don't get a chance to try to do anything "efficient" because the game has ended already. How can you research, when, in order to fulfil the planet requirements of the decent research cards, you have to get out planets, thereby ending the game? How can you trade when, in order to get out sufficient planets to make it worthwhile, you end then game?

If anything I would say that this game, in it's 4 player format, encourages what you call "inefficient play" as it's only viable route to victory!
 
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Damien Seb. ●leoskyangel●
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I play games not to win, it's the gathering that's important - Thanks for the tip Cate108!
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No comments on your variant, but find it interesting. I'm interested to see how does the discussion goes.

I played 2 four-players games last night (all 4 players played the game few times). We do know about the game ending quickly in our previous games many times, so we often buy tech cards (heavily) that has symbols on them. Our VPs ran out first rather than the usual colonize/warfare deck.

Have you tried going this way? Focusing to get more symbols (to boost) on tech cards instead of trying to get the standard cards into your deck.

 
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Ross Lewis
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dtroy_de_rapcore wrote:
No comments on your variant, but find it interesting. I'm interested to see how does the discussion goes.

I played 2 four-players games last night (all 4 players played the game few times). We do know about the game ending quickly in our previous games many times, so we often buy tech cards (heavily) that has symbols on them. Our VPs ran out first rather than the usual colonize/warfare deck.

Have you tried going this way? Focusing to get more symbols (to boost) on tech cards instead of trying to get the standard cards into your deck.



Absoloutley i have tried to follow players roles wisely i have researched level 1 tech cards to try and support my strategy and give me more symbols but it all comes to late.

My suggestion of having two planets flipped as you start the game would perhaps stop the rush at the beggining to colonize and would alow players to look at other ways of winning. (This suggestion came from my friend who was playing the game and realised the game was going to be over in the next round) He felt frustrated like me because he also had a strategy in place.

I shall try it next time I play and leave some feedback on how it went.

By the way I love this game and im just desperate for 4 player to work
 
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Seth Jaffee
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Lord_Khoo wrote:
sedjtroll wrote:
If you really want a longer game, I recommend trying the 3-stack approach. My biggest concern with that is that it doesn't encourage getting better at the game as much. Instead it rewards inefficient play by allowing it to compete with more efficient play. But if everybody prefers it, then by all means, you could play that way


I don't really understand what you mean here. It seems like in this game you don't get a chance to try to do anything "efficient" because the game has ended already.

I am very curious about your games, because this does not match my experience at all.

Quote:
How can you research, when, in order to fulfil the planet requirements of the decent research cards, you have to get out planets, thereby ending the game?

You only need 3 planets out to get a level 3 technology. If you are careful about when you survey and for how many, that's certainly not impossible. It happens all the time in my games. Sure, in a 4 player game you shouldn't expect to get a Level 3 tech in play and use it turn after turn - at 4 players the 5 points for playing the L3 tech is really the reason to do it, and that 5 points is significant.

Quote:
How can you trade when, in order to get out sufficient planets to make it worthwhile, you end then game?

How many planets do you consider "sufficient to make trading worthwhile"?

Quote:
If anything I would say that this game, in it's 4 player format, encourages what you call "inefficient play" as it's only viable route to victory!

How often does your group follow roles vs calling it themselves? For example Survey - do you Dissent other player's Survey role and then call Survey yourself instead? This is the only thing I can think of that would generate an experience like you're talking about. If everybody does that, especially if you each want 6+ planets in play, then yeah - the Survey stack will run down quickly. But you are much better off if you follow someone else's Survey most of the time, and then do something better suited to your own strategy on your own turn.
 
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Ross Lewis
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In order to start getting influence points via tech cards you need two of the same planets, im afraid in my experience trying to achieve two planets of the same kind and flipping them and then having enough tech icons to get one is just out of reach in a 4 player game.

I do believe the best i've ever done in a 4 player game is 2 x level 2 tech cards (which gave me 4 influence) plus my 3 planets which gave 10 influence of which left me with a total of 14 points. This score was a rare one for me as generally if i dont hammer the colonize route i get around 10.

In this game above i still lost to the player who colonized planets for about 16 points and a couple of points worth of trade

I will keep trying to work out better strategy and hope i can improve my scores, just scratching my head at the moment
 
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Chad Miller
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Quote:
You only need 3 planets out to get a level 3 technology. If you are careful about when you survey and for how many, that's certainly not impossible.


imo this isn't very consistent with the idea that you should tend to follow other people's survey rather than calling it yourself. As in you can get lvl 3 on your first three planets but realistically speaking you won't especially with Prestige planets in the mix.
 
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Alex Brown
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I think what this game needs is a primer on how to best capitalize on opponent play.

The gist is that it's better to do your Settling/Attacking as an action and to be Following as much as possible where it means you will accomplish at least 2 roles that round.

In my first four or five games Research could have been overvalued, but I think mainly it's the easiest way to 'win' inefficiently. As in the player accumulating overpowering technology through Level 2s and 3s won (not via points, but abilities that let them do whatever they wanted).

My initial advice:

*Produce/Trade doesn't just get better as the game goes on, it gets exponentially better based on the rate at which the piles are depleting. You either win by taking all the influence (trading) or by piling. If players are taking too many of one stack, P/T like crazy, even with one or two worlds. At that level, VP totals will be small, other players aren't roleing for P/T so they are relying on random symbols, and in general no one is watching you anyway it seems!
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luke smith
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I have played a few games and definitely feel that the 4 player game benefits a lot from going to 3 stacks.

However, if you want a really exciting and close 4 player game, I suggest trying it without level 2 and 3 technologies and just go to 2 stacks. It does remove a valid winning strategy (research path) but it is much easier to teach to newcomers and helps the game move along at a fairly decent pace. Introduce the level 2 and 3 techs after a few games of people being familiar with level 1 tech.

I have found that people familiar with dominion can pick this up much quicker without level 2 and 3, because they are used to only 10 cards or so, whereas with all the techs out, the choices are very broad, and it can slow the game down to a snail pace.
 
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Dwight A
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sedjtroll wrote:
size38waist wrote:
What if your starting planet is already flipped with perhaps one other planet (equal in value as each others random planet) also flipped.


If you really want a longer game, I recommend trying the 3-stack approach. My biggest concern with that is that it doesn't encourage getting better at the game as much. Instead it rewards inefficient play by allowing it to compete with more efficient play. But if everybody prefers it, then by all means, you could play that way


I don't really think this is a problem of efficiency, as an efficient player will simply be able to continue along his efficient route to greater success. I don't expect the average game will end with the inefficient players suddenly catching up to the efficient players because the game was extended for another 6 turns. There's something to be said about an "efficient" player who can't maintain his lead, or for a player who sets up a killer strategy that takes an extra turn or two to execute.

I think this thread is more about preferred styles of play. As for me, I think the game can end too quickly sometimes, but it can drag on as well, depending on the Roles that people emphasize on their turns. I wouldn't mind some hybrid of the regular rules and the 3 stack rule, like: If three stacks run out, the game is over; if two stacks run out and any other stack has three or fewer cards in it, the game is over; if one stack runs out and any two or more other stacks have three or fewer cards in them, the game is over.

So, if when a stack runs out enough other stacks are low, the game will enter its final round. If not, it will continue until the next stack runs out, at which time you'll check for game ending again.

Or something like that. My point is that the game could continue a bit longer, or even for a long time if people are diversifying their Roles. But the quick ending is still possible if people are competing for the same Roles or emphasizing a single Role.

Something to consider about an option like this is that it strengthens an existing dynamic in the game: Control over when the game ends. Players who feel they have the upper hand and want the game to end would be able to strategically choose their roles so that the game would end on the first or second empty stack.

I'm not sure I like that. It doesn't seem very thematic.
 
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