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Merchants & Marauders» Forums » Rules

Subject: Hiding cargo cards when buying and cheaters... rss

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Giancarlo Amente
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I searched and just couldn't find the answer to my question so here it goes.

My friend and I played a 2 player game last night and were wondering why you keep the cargo cards to yourself when you are buying. What does this accomplish game mechanic wise? How do you prevent someone from cheating and not getting rid of cards they should be for the Demand Token in the respective port they are buying from? Just overall wondering the point of keeping the cards hidden. Thanks everyone :)
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Bryce K. Nielsen
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you hide it so the pirate players don't know what you have.

As for cheating, the rules state that you have to show someone else the cards you bought if you are buying multiple (i.e. cheaper) copies. That rules is there exactly to prevent cheating.

-shnar
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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r1sefromru1n wrote:
What does this accomplish game mechanic wise?

Only one good is in demand at each port, so knowing what you had might affect decisions about where people might move. More importantly, it's true to the theme. This wasn't an era of instant communications. How would you conceivably know what somebody on the high seas had loaded from a port you haven't even visited?

r1sefromru1n wrote:
How do you prevent someone from cheating and not getting rid of cards they should be for the Demand Token in the respective port they are buying from?

I don't play with cheaters.
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Blorb Plorbst
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More importantly, it's hidden so another merchant can't figure out where you're headed, beat you there and change the demand token.

Issue 2: Don't play with cheaters.
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The reason for keeping cards hidden is to not broadcast which port you might be heading to next - especially if there's only one or two ports on the board that has a particular good in demand (with the possibility of your opponent/s being closer to it than you are).

When we play, we reveal the cards we're discarding to show that they match the good in demand before drawing new ones.

And no matter what game I'm playing, cheaters are not welcome.

Hope this helps.

edit: wow I'm a slow typer...

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Giancarlo Amente
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Great guys. This makes sense. Thanks for the quick responses!
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Bryce K. Nielsen
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Sungarden3 wrote:
When we play, we reveal the cards we're discarding to show that they match the good in demand before drawing new ones.

I'm pretty sure this is in the rules, that if you buy any cards at a multi-card-discount, you *have* to show someone else the cards you bought.

-shnar
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Carsten Jorgensen
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shnar wrote:
Sungarden3 wrote:
When we play, we reveal the cards we're discarding to show that they match the good in demand before drawing new ones.

I'm pretty sure this is in the rules, that if you buy any cards at a multi-card-discount, you *have* to show someone else the cards you bought.

-shnar


You are talking about two different things here (one talks discarding another buying).

Also one of the original question was about buying goods in demand - not if you could trick people into letting you draw new goods. If you just buy one good card, you should only pay 3 gold and so are not required to show it to someone (and so it could be a good in demand - no one could know you where cheating/making a mistake). So there is a potential for cheating - or hopefully more common - mistakes.
You could only solve this by always having to show someone all that you buy. Though I am more inclined to thrusting people - and actually also with buying at a discount (even if it is in the rules, that you must show one person the goods). It is a little bit of a spoiler that you cannot keep it all secret, I think. Of course this should only be when all understands how the discount and demand system works.
 
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Was George Orwell an Optimist?
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Randor20 wrote:
Though I am more inclined to thrusting people...

So I'm guessing you're more of a Marauder than a Merchant?
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Kevin 'Rocky' Robertson
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You could if you wanted have each other player (in a four person game) give the person two cargo cards, that they have seen but no-one else has, they won't know what was brought (well 1 might if multipals were brought), but this might slow down the port actions even more!

We in our group perfer to have it all open, so the player to left becomes the shop keeper and shows all the goods on offer, works for us, but maybe not for everyone

arrrh arrrh
 
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Carsten Jorgensen
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I finaly remembered another time you also have to trust players - and this is in an example in the rules. When two or more players cause a pirate to move, you have to ask each player how much money they have to deside which player the pirate will hunt for. But not by showing the money - you ask if they have over 15, over 10 and so on. It sure would be easy to cheat here too and especially if you went several rounds before buying anything with the gold you "forgot" to tell people about.

So again I would just trust people. Though maybe naive to trust any kind of merchant, even if they just have the role in a game ? They could be role-playing it just a little bit too much and trying to swindle everyone they meet - like all merchants (of that age mind you - merchants today are of course all honest people, who wouldn't dream of charging you twice what something is worth...).
 
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Christian Marcussen
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People who cheat in games should be fed to the sharks. arrrh
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Darth Mallen
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cheating?!? rather 'piratey' of your mates I suppose?

While thematic, I recommend powder pistol or rapier to deal with this scum.
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Carlos Alves
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This rule can prevent or help to cheat to buy goods with discount.
If you are playing with 4 players, the active plays wants to buy goods and discard the goods in demand in the current port after drawing a new, if has sold as the first action. Then draw the same number of cards he discarded. Repeat until all cards are different from that good in demand. Then he chooses to buy 3 copies of good in demand from neighbours zone port for easy money. He must reveal to his chosen other player to validate the move.

My question, if the others players trust the active player choice of the other player, by making a secret backstab on cheating. It may happen, but in my group there're no cheaters, only minor mistakes than can solve in the next play.

But you guys are saying that you don't play with cheaters, so that may mean that you will never play with your friend.

So i got a idea for this rule. Why don't ban the discounts when buying goods. You buy goods as normal without discounts. When selling the same copies, you added 1 gold coin per copy of that good as revenue.

Example:

- Official Rule -
--------------- BUY GOODS ------------------
-> 1 copy of Good --- Cost 3 Gold Coins per card
-> 2 copies of Good --- Cost 2 Gold Coins per card
-> 3 copies of Good --- Cost 1 Gold Coins per card
------------- SELLING GOODS ----------------
-> 1 copy of Good --- Receivss 3 Gold Coins per card
-> 1 Good in Demand --- Receivss 6 Gold Coins per card

- House Rule -
--------------- BUY GOODS ------------------
-> 1 copy of Good --- Cost 3 Gold Coins per card
-> 2 copies of Good --- Cost 3 Gold Coins per card
-> 3 copies of Good --- Cost 3 Gold Coins per card
------------- SELLING GOODS ----------------
-> 1 Good Not Demand --- Receivss 3 Gold Coins per card
-> 1 Good in Demand --- Receivss 6 Gold Coins per card
-> 2 Goods in Demand --- Receives 6+1 Gold Coins per card
-> 3 Goods in Demand --- Receives 6+2 Gold Coins per card

I believe this house rule will prevent cheating and doesn't need to increase the downtime to validate when buying goods. The incomes from the officials and for this house rules are the same.

In this way, the buying goods is always hidden to make it harder for pirates or evil merchants to guess your next destination.

Feel Free to try this house rule.
 
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Carsten Jorgensen
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You would earn the same amount of gold, yes. But only if you bought the 3 goods sold in demand at the same port. If you bought them in 3 different ports you would end up with 6 more gold than from the official rules.
And just as important - merchants would have a tougher time in the start since they could never begin the game by buying 2x2 goods at 8 gold. And later they could not buy upgrades and weapons quite as fast, since more gold would have to be tied up in their cargo. Pirates however would have a slightly easier time since their plundered goods would be worth more if they manage to sell 2 or 3 of a kind in demand. And so far in my games pirates have won most times - which I think is okay, as it makes for more interesting games, but I don't think the difference should be bigger.
The other players would also not get the "warning" that you just bought 3 of one kind (good for realism perhaps, but might do something to the game balance - and especially the end game, I think).

Though of course a good idea if you are really suspicious of the other players :-). Or if you want to weaken merchants and make it slightly easier for pirates.

However your version doesn't solve the potential cheat with not re-drawing cargo cards when you get goods that are in demand at your current port. You could do that by removing all of that type from the cargo deck, draw cargo cards and then shuffle the demand good back in again. But a veryyyy time consuming process, so not one I'll ever try :-).
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Carlos Alves
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I guess that you are right.

Quote:
You could do that by removing all of that type from the cargo deck, draw cargo cards and then shuffle the demand good back in again. But a veryyyy time consuming process, so not one I'll ever try :-).


Why not making a house rules. When you sell a good in demand on a port, you discard the good token as normal, but don't replace a new one yet, ony after 2 rounds, to make it more thematic.
This may solve the problem of discarding and drawing cargo cards from that demand.
But it's still needed to reveal his cargo cards discounts to a player of your choice.
 
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Carsten Jorgensen
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Sorry for "shooting down" your previous idea. Still it is good to just put them out there and hear what others think .

BGFreakDag2PT wrote:
Why not making a house rules. When you sell a good in demand on a port, you discard the good token as normal, but don't replace a new one yet, ony after 2 rounds, to make it more thematic.
This may solve the problem of discarding and drawing cargo cards from that demand.
But it's still needed to reveal his cargo cards discounts to a player of your choice.


Yes, this would work, I think. Maybe a small problem that you have to remember things for some rounds to come. But to expand a bit on your idea:

1) When selling in demand, you don't replace the token right away. Instead you wait until any ship leaves that port. This way you don't have to remember a few turns ahead or what ship sold the good in demand. Still noone can cheat and keep any new in demand cargo cards they draw (since there is none yet).

2) Alternatively it could be when a player moves away from a sea-zone where the port is without a demand token (so you have to move even further away). Though then you have to keep an eye on ports you are just sailing by, so perhaps not a good idea.

3) A much simpler version. You draw the new demand token after you finish all port activities (that is if you removed it after selling any goods in demand).

4) Or if you want the demand to change more than it does now, you could replace the token whenever someone ends a port activity (even if they didn't sell any goods - it would be a way to represent the NPC merchants selling goods).

Of course all of those ideas makes it slightly less likely to get more of one kind when drawing cargo cards (since you now keep all kinds of cargo cards). So actually this also makes it a little harder for merchants, but I think it is not as much, as your first idea .

Since there can be ports with no demand tokens in 1) and 2), those two would be slightly harder on merchants than 3) (as 1) and 2) gives them fewer places to score points, they might have to sail further). And of course this becomes a bit worse if you wait 2 turns to replace the token. 4) is also bad for merchants, since it would make it harder to plan a rute (pirates going in to sell 1 or 2 goods not in demand, but still changing the demand token). 1) and 2) hurts pirates a little too, but only a few gold now and then (unless you can have 3 cargo of course).

If any house rule makes it too hard for merchants, you can always reverse the order in merchant raid for pirates. The rule is that you:

draw 3 cards
roll seamanship and use special weapons for upgrades to skulls
then use any skulls for new cards, to exchange or discard.

In my first game we did it wrong, so it became:

roll seamanship and use special weapons for upgrades to skulls
draw 3 cards
then use any skulls for new cards, to exchange or discard.

The last (and wrong one) makes raiding harder since you cannot first look at the 3 cards and think it is hopeless to get 12+ gold this time. And then choose not to use any special weapons, but rather save them for the next raid (and so avoid going into port for new weapons saving some actions - one full turn actually).

edit: hmm... this did became a bit long snore
 
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Steve Duff
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Randor20 wrote:
BGFreakDag2PT wrote:
Why not making a house rules. When you sell a good in demand on a port, you discard the good token as normal, but don't replace a new one yet, ony after 2 rounds, to make it more thematic.


3) A much simpler version. You draw the new demand token after you finish all port activities (that is if you removed it after selling any goods in demand).


Neither of these two suggestions work, because they allow the player to illegally buy the good in demand in their current city (because you haven't revealed it yet, they don't know they should put it back).
 
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Carsten Jorgensen
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UnknownParkerBrother wrote:
Randor20 wrote:
BGFreakDag2PT wrote:
Why not making a house rules. When you sell a good in demand on a port, you discard the good token as normal, but don't replace a new one yet, ony after 2 rounds, to make it more thematic.


3) A much simpler version. You draw the new demand token after you finish all port activities (that is if you removed it after selling any goods in demand).


Neither of these two suggestions work, because they allow the player to illegally buy the good in demand in their current city (because you haven't revealed it yet, they don't know they should put it back).


Well, it wouldn't really have to be illegal anymore to buy the good in demand. Since it hasn't been revealed yet, players can not plan for it and buy lots of goods in demand. Which they can do in the rules now - if they cheat and keep cards they should have re-drawn (the original question).
But of course a player might get lucky and buy lots of goods they could then sell in demand next turn (with 8 goods in the game it would happen 1/8 times - or a bit better odds if you count what tokens are already on the board). So 1) would probably be the best of my suggestions.

That is if you want to change anything in the rules at all. I haven't played nearly enough to do that, though I doubt that I ever will (it is such a great game ). And as I wrote in an earlier post, you also have to trust people when it comes to how much gold they have on-board (for pirate hunt priorities). Unless you change that rule too of course.
 
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Ryan Caputo
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You could have the player set the cards face down on the table in piles that match and when selling flip over the pile, at least it would track someone buying multiples without having to show the cards.
 
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