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Trent Hamm
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A group of us have decided to give Twilight Imperium a try. None of us have ever really played before - one person in the group tried a demo or something at a convention several years ago. I'm the one who has been designated to read the rules and more or less teach it.

I think I have a decent grasp of the rules and the general flow of the game. I'm looking for suggestions for making this teaching process and the first game or two of TI go well.
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Martin DeOlden
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Set a time limit for your first game as it is going to be longer then usual and this first game is more for getting to understand the rules and the playstyle of the game.

Use the least amount of rule variants in the first game. You can add those in from the book as you get to know the game better.

Use one of the preset up maps in the rulebook to help speed up the game and they are fairly balanced as well, that way your group can focus more on actual game play then the set-up rules for the first game.

DO NOt use SET (Simulated Early Turns) for your first game as this will remove some very needed learning time for playing the games first few turns plus SET is a bad variant (IMHO).

If you have one the Shattered Empire expansion then use those Strategy Cards otherwise the base set is fine to learn your first game on.

Go to FFG website and download the latest 2.4 FAQ as that will help in a lot of questions.

If you have any in game questions you can always stop and post a quick question on the boards as someone is usually online to answer within a few minutes.
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Dmitry Vensko
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Playing full game at once could be frustrating imo - without familiarity with technologies and strategy cards.

A few days ago I've introduced the game to my son. We started without Strategy cards, goals etc - just activation sequence. Then added 5 of Strategy cards, to see how they work together. Finally started to add goals, research, all cards and so on.

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Skolo
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there is FAQ 2.5 now, so use that
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Uriah Harding
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I would honestly suggest not playing a full ten point game. My group started with a six point game and it went really well and didn't scare anyone off then had them wanting to play more.

I would, as stated by Martin, use only the basic Vanilla rules without any variants at first. My group wanted to jump straight into leaders being added but we refrained, thankfully. We did end up playing with leaders after a couple of games and decided they weren't any fun to use to begin with so we were gald that we waited.
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Scott M.
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There is a lot of good advice here , in addition please look at the following link:


Awesome 3 Player Twilight Imperium 3rd ed. Tutorial graciously created by "Fastfingers":

IT is a 3 player Tutorial of TI, what makes this different is the fact that if you go through the tutorial (about 1 hour reading and images) you will have in fact played a 3 player 6 turn game of TI. IT covers almost every aspect of the base games functions and situations, specifically for new players. IT is how i learned. When i had my first real game i already felt i know how to basically play.

If you find it useful let Fastfingers know, im sure he will apreciate it!
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Martin Presley
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Aside from specific set-up recommendations (I love creating the galaxy!) I'd say don't get too hung-up on marginal rule cases and focus on keeping the game moving and having fun. If there's a rules dispute, just vote on it and roll with it.
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Benson Propst
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All of the advice posted so far is outstanding.


I spent hours preparing for the first playthrough because I desperately wanted to get some people hooked on the game so it would get future plays. I played a game for the first time with my two brothers this past weekend, and it went great.

These are some humble recommendations (some of which have been mentioned already).

1. Explaining the rules of the game - I explained the game more like a video game tutorial for any current system (360, PS3, etc. Instead of inundating everyone with every single little rule that could come up, I just waited until a game situation demanded rules to be explained or clarified. This worked great because my brothers felt like they could digest the game in smaller doses and hear the rules within the context of the game phase/round.

2. Preset Map - I didn't do this, but wanted to. For some reason I forgot about the preset maps in the main TI3 rule book. Definitely use a preset map. It will get you into the game quicker, and will reduce the feeling of, "we've already spent 30-45+ minutes talking/setting up the game and we're still not quite ready to play!?!?!"

3. Which Variants. We only used the the "Age of Empire Variant." Nearly every thread I've read on "new player suggestions," has recommended this variant. It is the ONLY variant we played with and we enjoyed seeing all of the goals we could go after from the very beginning of the game.

4. Player Aids - Print out a legible tech tree. I traded for my copy of the game and one was included. Look under the "FILES" section on the TI3 entry within BGG, there are two or three great Tech Tree player aids.

http://boardgamegeek.com/filepage/21615/techtree-ti3-pdf

Also, print out a player aid for the game pieces (ships, ground forces, with their special abilities).

http://boardgamegeek.com/filepage/36815/tech-checklist-with-...

5. Emphasize having fun - The first time around my brothers and I forgot some of the rules (space dock production limits), firing PDS's when the deep space canon tech came into play, etc. We let people take mulligans when they forgot a certain rule as well. In the end, I wanted the expereince to be fun so they wouldn't be turned off from the game.

6. Race selection - completely random.

7. Game Ending Points Needed - We started at only needing 6 points, but when left it open to play longer once someone got to 6 points. We ended up playing to 10 because people were having fun.

They are now hooked and I'm already trying to plan our next TI3 game with more people, and we all think it was a fantastic game.

Best wishes!
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Jack Smith
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Ask players to work out roughly what they want to do before it is their turn. This substantially reduces down time. Avoid players with excessive AP if you can, this game won't work well for them or the rest of the group.
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muthrali the relentless
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Halfinger wrote:
Ask players to work out roughly what they want to do before it is their turn. This substantially reduces down time. Avoid players with excessive AP if you can, this game won't work well for them or the rest of the group.


Sorry, what does AP mean?
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Trent Hamm
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muthrali wrote:
Halfinger wrote:
Ask players to work out roughly what they want to do before it is their turn. This substantially reduces down time. Avoid players with excessive AP if you can, this game won't work well for them or the rest of the group.


Sorry, what does AP mean?


On BGG, it almost always means "analysis paralysis" - when someone spends an excessive amount of time evaluating options on their turn.
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Trent Hamm
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The first play was a big success. Everyone enjoyed it with no big rules problems, and we ended with two people crossing the ten point threshold.

There is real interest in playing again, but there is big interest in playing with five or six players instead of three. We all feel it would make for a richer game.
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Benson Propst
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Congratulations! You have created more TI3 junkies. laugh My group shared the same sentiments as yours. Super glad you and your group enjoyed your first play. Just out of curiosity, what aspects did people like about the game?

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Trent Hamm
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Bendalf wrote:
Congratulations! You have created more TI3 junkies. laugh My group shared the same sentiments as yours. Super glad you and your group enjoyed your first play. Just out of curiosity, what aspects did people like about the game?



Race differences (and the fact that different races would make for very different games), the abundance of routes to victory, and the negotiation at various points.
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