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Subject: What I like and dislike rss

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Jack Smith
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This is not a review just observations about the game after several plays and why I often pick it over other games I may wish to play. I really like the game so my negative comments do not really detract from my own game experience:

Good points:

1. Easy to play. There is only one unit type (influence) and the game concepts are simple. You therefore get to the point of fighting your opponent rather than the game mechanics quickly.

2. Event cards give two options only. Ops or event, very easy. The depth comes from the interaction and timing of cards as well as having to deal with your opponents events. This does not add to the complexity but makes the game very interesting with agonising choices throughout.

3. Takes a minute to set up. As a wargamer I love that aspect.

4. Game balancing options if you want them such as the optional cards and the China Card variant.

5. Its simplicity and apparent lack of aggression appeals to non wargamers.

6. It plays quickly and it's easy to see how well you are doing at any given time.

7. No game mechanics seems forced and the ones that are there, such as the Defcon track, play an important role in the game. There is no part that seems unnecessary or useless.


The bad:

1. The rules are not as good as they could be. Scoring cards..are they event cards too? Also, the examples of when an opponent's cards are discarded to the pile or removed from the game are inconsistent with the rules layout and in one example not stated at all.

2. The errata is mixed with the faq, includes a large chunk from the first edition and a lot of it could be included in the rules supplied, perhaps as an appendix. As a result we get a lot of questions that should have been answered in the core rules.

3. Not enough higher value counters (due to the switch to having control colours without increasing the counters)

4. The Cold War was really the West versus the East and two political systems. The game does reflect that in the cards but the whole US centric approach gives the impression is was a war against two super powers only and where only they had influence in the world. That was not the case (I'm being devils advocate as I realise it is simpler to do it the way it was done)

5. I like this game so much I'm finding less time to play other games. I blame TS for being too good!
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Good post..thumbsupthumbsup

Mostly agree with what you write.
Adding some more high value counters is my biggest wish.
All the 1's are a bit to much, adding some more 6 and 7 and 8's would be fine, I guess.

Fluent game play is a big bonus. No need for constant rule-referring during the game (once you get used to the rules).

Cheers, Haring
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Bartow Riggs
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I use red and blue pawns for the action rounds. (six of each color for the first three turns and 7 of each color thereafter.) Move a pawn off the board each time an action is taken. We have found less mistakes are made that way (i.e - forgetting to move the action round marker.)

Here is a picture of what I use:
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Jack Smith
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BartowWing wrote:
I use red and blue pawns for the action rounds. (six of each color for the first three turns and 7 of each color thereafter.) Move a pawn off the board each time an action is taken. We have found less mistakes are made that way (i.e - forgetting to move the action round marker.)

Here is a picture of what I use:


That's a good idea. Normally it is easy to know which action round you are in but sometimes it is tricky to work out. We often forget to advance the counter.
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Evgeny Reznikov
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We have a twin card row near the board.
The top row is USSD played cards for this turn, bottom row is US. After play, each card is placed in the appropriate row - this makes it easy to track how many rounds were played.
The cards are all discarded when the turn ends.
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Nigel Clarke
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azuredarkness wrote:
We have a twin card row near the board.
The top row is USSD played cards for this turn, bottom row is US. After play, each card is placed in the appropriate row - this makes it easy to track how many rounds were played.
The cards are all discarded when the turn ends.


Sounds good but how do you know which card should be discarded and which should be removed from the game (starred event played)? Memory? Face down vs face up?
 
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Anders Olin
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Quote:
5. I like this game so much I'm finding less time to play other games. I blame TS for being too good!


I somewhat agree with this statement
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Nigel Clarke
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Halfinger wrote:
This is not a review just observations about the game after several plays and why I often pick it over other games I may wish to play. I really like the game so my negative comments do not really detract from my own game experience


Hi Jack,

I agree with your good points. I have listed some bad points, in my current opinion.

You asked me to report back when I played again.
We played last Saturday - 10:30 to 17:00.

We both enjoyed the game, there are buts from my point of view though.

Time.
Maybe it's cos we are new but the game takes too long - too much scope for AP (my opponent isn't the quickest player, but he's not too slow).
I just cannot justify that much time playing one game - golf's bad enough!
Someone replied to me that they play their games in 2 hours - right now that's an unachievable goal for me.

Cards.
I still do not like playing cards with my opponents events on, it seems that your turn is just reacting to those bad events. One turn I had 1 USSR event (mine this time) and 8 US events. The whole turn really dragged as there wasn't much I could do proactively.

Game for boys.
The game excludes my wife and daughter - they do not like the subject matter.

One-sided.
Playing the game OOTB, ie. no China variant and no optional cards, the USSR player is difficult to beat. We both want to play as US again, to try and discover the right strategy to win as US.

I have currently ranked this game as a 7. That is probably harsh, maybe I'll move it to an 8 soon, but sorry gentlemen (and ladies who enjoy this game), it won't get a 10 from me.
Of course, I need to play more times so who knows?
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Jack Smith
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Thanks for the update. My experience is a bit different,

Time

With one player it also took me 6 hours. I saw this going down though quite a lot. There's a lot of choices which experience cuts down on I think. 3 hours is more than reasonable now.

Cards

Dealing with my opponents events is part of the game I really like. I like the decision of when to play them and whether I should play them early in the game to get them discarded before they can cause too much damage. Of course this is purely a matter of preference.

Game for Boys

Fair enough but I play the game with 3 females who enjoy it. The subject matter (and the US centric approach which I felt would hold less interest for me) is one reason I delayed buying the game for years. As it turned out this wasn't an issue for me but I was lucky in that regard.

USSR

I have not yet seen this which I have put down to the luck of the draw for the US in the opening hand as well as inexperience. For now I have left out the optionals as like you I want to see how it can play out with the US. So far it's been about even.



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Alex Brown
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Halfinger wrote:

4. The Cold War was really the West versus the East and two political systems. The game does reflect that in the cards but the whole US centric approach gives the impression is was a war against two super powers only and where only they had influence in the world. That was not the case (I'm being devils advocate as I realise it is simpler to do it the way it was done)


Interesting. I think the game does a great job of showing how the USA and USSR drove all important international events of the era, and the slide from communist revolution to capitalist inevitability is a beautifully designed concept.
 
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Jack Smith
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Alex Brown wrote:
Halfinger wrote:

4. The Cold War was really the West versus the East and two political systems. The game does reflect that in the cards but the whole US centric approach gives the impression is was a war against two super powers only and where only they had influence in the world. That was not the case (I'm being devils advocate as I realise it is simpler to do it the way it was done)


Interesting. I think the game does a great job of showing how the USA and USSR drove all important international events of the era, and the slide from communist revolution to capitalist inevitability is a beautifully designed concept.


Certainly the US was the main player but it was far from the only one. It is the same with Labyrinth which takes the practical view terrorism started in 2001 when it was the inevitable consequence of terrorist events occurring for several years before then (from 1980)

But more sophistication is given by the card events anyway so I have no issue with it. Anyway to do anything else would complicate the game to the point it would probably ruin it.

But I have no interest in playing a game with US only or any particular country for that matter in what was a global conflict. As it turns out the game is global so that's fine. But for anyone interested in the cold war they may give the game a pass purely because it does not seem international. That's exactly what I did until I researched it more.
 
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Conor Hickey
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banzai123 wrote:
[q="Halfinger"]

Time.
Maybe it's cos we are new but the game takes too long - too much scope for AP (my opponent isn't the quickest player, but he's not too slow).
I just cannot justify that much time playing one game - golf's bad enough!
Someone replied to me that they play their games in 2 hours - right now that's an unachievable goal for me.

Cards.
I still do not like playing cards with my opponents events on, it seems that your turn is just reacting to those bad events. One turn I had 1 USSR event (mine this time) and 8 US events. The whole turn really dragged as there wasn't much I could do proactively.

Game for boys.
The game excludes my wife and daughter - they do not like the subject matter.

One-sided.
Playing the game OOTB, ie. no China variant and no optional cards, the USSR player is difficult to beat. We both want to play as US again, to try and discover the right strategy to win as US.

I have currently ranked this game as a 7. That is probably harsh, maybe I'll move it to an 8 soon, but sorry gentlemen (and ladies who enjoy this game), it won't get a 10 from me.
Of course, I need to play more times so who knows?


Time: you will get quicker with time but this is not a fast game - 2 1/2 to 3 hours is regular for a game that goes to Final Scoring. The way to justify the time spent is to ask yourself are you enjoying it? If you are then who cares how long it takes? It's no more a bad use of time than is playing golf, or watching TV, both perfectly fine activities if you are enjoying yourself.

Opponents cards: again this will improve in time and you will, if you are still playing, come to see that it is great to have a hand of your opponents cards that you can get rid of early - but this is something that only comes with experience.

The whole essence of TS is crisis management, dumping your opponent's event for least benefit to him, while getting the most out of your events and his play of yours - I have to say this is a pretty fundamental aspect of the game and if you do not think you will come to like then TS is probably not for you.

For boys: my wife loves this game, so it's not just for boys but yes the subject will matter will not appeal to everyone, or indeed to many people - this is true of all games.

One-sided: with the Optional Cards the win rate is 50/50 but you do need to have some idea of strategy for each side in the Early War - check out some of the articles on bgg - I found them invaluable when I started out - particularly check Philip Thomas's card strategy guide.

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Jack Smith
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I suspect those of us with a Wargame background consider 3 hours to mean a filler game, which for me it is I don't care how long something takes, it is the enjoyment I get during that time which matters.

The 'women wont like it' thing is from the faulty logic on BGG which goes like this:

1. Man does not like games, it is because he is not a gamer

2. Woman does not like games, it is because she is female

You can then extend that faulty logic to any game you like.

Forums such as the womens' section just promote this stereotype.

Of my family the only person who does NOT play games of all sorts on a regular basis is male.
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Richard
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Actually, I've found as a newbie there can be some very short games. The classic "play a card that allows your opponent to do an op in the last round on Turn 1" is a good way to have a 30-minute game.

My friend and I, who are learning this game together, played our third and fourth game in just over three hours total. One game ended on Turn 4 due to USSR's control of Europe and the other in Turn 6 to USSR's 20 VPs. Our goal is to make it to the Late War!
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Daniel Dunbring
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Halfinger wrote:

The 'women wont like it' thing is from the faulty logic on BGG which goes like this:

1. Man does not like games, it is because he is not a gamer

2. Woman does not like games, it is because she is female

You can then extend that faulty logic to any game you like.

Forums such as the womens' section just promote this stereotype.


The really funny part is that the womens' section in question just doesnt understand that they promote this stereotype and they don´t want to understand either. If I was to use the faulty logic mentioned above I could say that because that some individuals (who happen to be women) in the womens' section clearly lacks intelligence and logic, ALL females lack intelligence and logic.

When you try to focus on the wrong things (getting femininity valued equally with masculinity) you forget that femininity and masculinity are definitions who shouldn´t be locked to your sex, but to your individual personality.

But again, the womens' section on BGG are not the shapest knives in the box...

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banzai123 wrote:

Game for boys.
The game excludes my wife and daughter - they do not like the subject matter.



I disagree with this too. This is my wife's favorite game because of the excellent rules and because of the crisis management aspects. She doesn't know much about the subject matter except that there is no Soviet Union anymore.

I'm not saying that everyone will like it but I feel that this game is good enough where understanding the subject matter enhances the playing, but anyone who loves games may enjoy it without it.

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DarkTori wrote:
banzai123 wrote:

Game for boys.
The game excludes my wife and daughter - they do not like the subject matter.



I disagree with this too. This is my wife's favorite game because of the excellent rules and because of the crisis management aspects. She doesn't know much about the subject matter except that there is no Soviet Union anymore.

I'm not saying that everyone will like it but I feel that this game is good enough where understanding the subject matter enhances the playing, but anyone who loves games may enjoy it without it.



Gonna have to throw my experience into this one two. So far, I have played 24 games of TS, 22 of them have been with my girlfriend. By the way, she usually wins.
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Firestata wrote:

But again, the womens' section on BGG are not the shapest knives in the box...



You do realize that some of us do read other forums, don't you? But hey, thanks for the slam.

Speaking as a woman, I love this game, but struggle to get my husband to play it. I like the history, the map, and the steep learning curve. It's not gotten old yet for me. Even if I'm not the sharpest tool in the box.

Edited for: I don't want to rehash the previous long thread about why the women's subforum exists. My feelings on the subject are there. However, I wish that people would be more cognizant that we aren't locked in over there. We're reading the same threads as you are. Try and use a little courtesy when talking about us. Just because we disagree with your viewpoint doesn't render us stupid.



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Firestata wrote:
Halfinger wrote:

The 'women wont like it' thing is from the faulty logic on BGG which goes like this:

1. Man does not like games, it is because he is not a gamer

2. Woman does not like games, it is because she is female

You can then extend that faulty logic to any game you like.

Forums such as the womens' section just promote this stereotype.


The really funny part is that the womens' section in question just doesnt understand that they promote this stereotype and they don´t want to understand either. If I was to use the faulty logic mentioned above I could say that because that some individuals (who happen to be women) in the womens' section clearly lacks intelligence and logic, ALL females lack intelligence and logic.

When you try to focus on the wrong things (getting femininity valued equally with masculinity) you forget that femininity and masculinity are definitions who shouldn´t be locked to your sex, but to your individual personality.

But again, the womens' section on BGG are not the shapest knives in the box...



You are right in saying that I don't understand how the Women and Gaming forum promotes the stereotype that women don't like games because they are female when most of the active threads are by women discussing games and gaming?????

Also, the ones promoting that stereotype on the Women and Gaming forum are almost always male. I personally don't see anything wrong with having a corner of BGG that doesn't measure my value based on the size of my breasts.

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Kathy Sheets
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she2 wrote:
Firestata wrote:

But again, the womens' section on BGG are not the shapest knives in the box...



You do realize that some of us do read other forums, don't you? But hey, thanks for the slam.

Speaking as a woman, I love this game, but struggle to get my husband to play it. I like the history, the map, and the steep learning curve. It's not gotten old yet for me. Even if I'm not the sharpest tool in the box.





And this is one of the reasons why we have a women's section. Because some of the self-described sharpest tools in the box are offensive and we just get sick of it.
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Firestata wrote:

The really funny part is that the womens' section in question just doesnt understand that they promote this stereotype and they don´t want to understand either. If I was to use the faulty logic mentioned above I could say that because that some individuals (who happen to be women) in the womens' section clearly lacks intelligence and logic, ALL females lack intelligence and logic.

When you try to focus on the wrong things (getting femininity valued equally with masculinity) you forget that femininity and masculinity are definitions who shouldn´t be locked to your sex, but to your individual personality.

But again, the womens' section on BGG are not the shapest knives in the box...

Are you just trolling? If not, I think this attitude pretty much explains why women would rather talk to each other. Back on topic I happen to like TS, although I don't get to play it as often as I wish I could. I agree with OP's other points.
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banzai123 wrote:
Game for boys.

My TS playing girlfriend salutes you.

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Jack Smith
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I think now is a good time to play the Duck 'n' Cover card
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Halfinger wrote:
I think now is a good time to play the Duck 'n' Cover card


Or we will bury you? Lol.

Jack, seriously, good thread. I was enjoying reading it until the interruption.
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Evgeny Reznikov
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banzai123 wrote:
azuredarkness wrote:
We have a twin card row near the board.
The top row is USSD played cards for this turn, bottom row is US. After play, each card is placed in the appropriate row - this makes it easy to track how many rounds were played.
The cards are all discarded when the turn ends.


Sounds good but how do you know which card should be discarded and which should be removed from the game (starred event played)? Memory? Face down vs face up?

Either face up/face down, or place the to-be-removed cards sidewise (tapped)
 
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