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Catan: Traders & Barbarians» Forums » Rules

Subject: Fishermen of Catan question rss

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Moe45673
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I broke it out for my first time and played with some friends recently. It passed with flying colors. The fact that harbors were now way more valuable made it that there was almost no intersection that was a bad starting point and the game was so cutthroat!

Anyhow, my question is this: We played that each time someone got a fish, they'd take it out of the upside down scrambled fish pile. Then when they paid, they put it back into the upside down scrambled fish pile and scrambled it again.

I only noticed later the rules say to create a discard pile. How does either way affect the game?
 
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James Newton
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The difference is in the likelihood of picking up any particular fish tile.

There is a small, subtle effect in that if the early pickups are 3-fish tiles then later ones must be 1-fish (and vice-versa) if used fish are not shuffled back into the supply. Whereas by shuffling used fish back in immediately, it allows someone to get really lucky (or unlucky) and get mosly 3-fish tiles (or mostly 1-fish tiles) throughout the game.

However the larger effect is with the old boot. Playing by the rules (not shuffling used fish back into the supply until all the original ones have been drawn), the old boot must be drawn within the first run through the tiles, which virtually guarantees that it will come into play. If you shuffle discards back in immediately then a game could go on and never see the old boot.

I would say that the designer's intent was that the boot always comes into play when using fisheries, providing its disadvantage to balance the advantages of playing with fisheries. This is why I would say that you really should play according to the rules and only shuffle the discards to make a new supply when the original supply runs out.
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Moe45673
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Ahhhhh. I hear that.

However, I've played twice with Fishermen (just got T&B recently) and both times the old boot was fished out so it didn't occur to me that there could be a game where it wasn't. I'm also not much of a card counter, especially when other people are using the cards.

A thought: if you play with 4 people and each one takes out fish tokens, then the shuffled pile will start to dwindle over time making the odds of the next pick being the old boot greater and greater so I'm unsure if I really see it as an issue.
 
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Reiner Dr. Düren
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I've played once the game with 6 players and although a lot of fish tokens were drawn - the last one was the old boot. If we would have put them together when they were used, probably the old boot would have been not drawn. And finally the old boot decided who the game won since it was a very close game.
 
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Ron H
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Can you trade the old boot multiple times, or do you just give it away once to the highest scoring player?

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Jonty
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During a player's turn, after rolling the dice, the player can give it to another player who has the same or more VP. So it can be passed around back and forth.

rongammer wrote:
Can you trade the old boot multiple times, or do you just give it away once to the highest scoring player?
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