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Subject: First game with 6 newbies: 6, 7 or 8 districts to end the game? rss

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Benoit Flageol
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I'm one of them.

I'm getting this game for my birthday and I plan to play it for the first time with 5 other people who never played it before.

I learned all the rules online and I also made a quick reference sheet to teach it to everyone.

Should we play with the end game condition of 8 district or do you recommend that I lower the end game condition to 7 or even 6 since we are all new?

Of course I will be using the base game and not the expansion.
 
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Nidale wrote:
I'm one of them.

I'm getting this game for my birthday and I plan to play it for the first time with 5 other people who never played it before.

I learned all the rules online and I also made a quick reference sheet to teach it to everyone.

Should we play with the end game condition of 8 district or do you recommend that I lower the end game condition to 7 or even 6 since we are all new?

Of course I will be using the base game and not the expansion.
For me, it's moreso about time. 5p games take about 1 hour to 1.5 hours. Just make sure everyone's in it for the longer haul. For gameplay differences, I think it's worth messing up a bit of gaemplay if it means shaving half an hour or more off game time. My post on similar topic here for more info....

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/article/8912304#8912304
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Benoit Flageol
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Do you recommend switching the Warlord for the Diplomat even tho it's our first game?
 
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Nidale wrote:
Do you recommend switching the Warlord for the Diplomat even tho it's our first game?
Warlord's cleaner and easier to explain, but unless your group's on the "slower side" in picking up even simplier concepts, you could use Diplomat for variety. FWIW, the designer's preferences is to use the original chars and purple district cards, as he feels those are most balanced and fun to play.
 
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Lars Wagner Hansen
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Personally I'll never play Citadels with more than 4 players again.

I actually think Citadels works best with 2-3 players, where each player gets two roles.

With 5+ players you get to long game-time, and it's not fun for the player who is hit repetedly by the assassin (which lead to prolonged game-time, and downtime for the affected player).

I would consider switching the Assassin for the Witch, which hurt less.
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James Newton
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I recently played with 4 people who knew the game, and we fitted 3 or 4 games into one afternoon - so no more than an hour per game, and some were shorter. When I have played with more it has sometimes gone on longer (or felt like it) which I suspect is because we have also played with newbies who are often also non-gamers, and so they have take longer over everything.

I would suggest that if you are all learning the game, then play it as it is supposed to be played (up to 8, standard cards) and accept that it will take longer while you are learning it. Then, once you know the game as designed, you can consider tweaking it for a quicker/nicer game.

I would definitely recommend finding/making player aids which list the characters and their abilities, as that is something that new players always seem to want to know. Note that the game comes with player cards with the turn summary on one side and the scoring on the other.

The other this that I would stronly recommend is sleeves - at least for the character cards. The black borders wear fairly quickly from being repeatedly picked up (we play on a wooden table), shuffled and handled every turn. After the first few games I noticed this and realised that the cards from the expansion (which comes with the base game nowadays) would be obviously less scuffed and distinguishable. In fact, once I got some sleeves, I ended up shuffling, placing and picking up the expansion cards a few times just to make them look the same.
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Ze Masqued Cucumber
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Same as the above.
FYI there's a very nice player aid available here, in French :
Note : there's a typo on the architect ability, he doesn't receive any coin.
 
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Benoit Flageol
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Roolz wrote:
Same as the above.
FYI there's a very nice player aid available here, in French :
Note : there's a typo on the architect ability, he doesn't receive any coin.

Really nice, thanks!
 
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Andrei Ivanesei
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I only have one thing to add:

Swap the Assassin with the Witch. The Assassin has major flaws in my opinion: can't be countered and getting assassinated sucks. There's no reason to not pick it if you can. Yeah, you dont get a +1 gold coin / district like other characters do, but you dont have any weakness. You cant be countered in any way

The Witch on the other hand can be countered (none pick the bewitched character - the witch looses half the turn) and if you are bewitched, you still get to draw cards or take 2 gold coins.

Other thing to consider:
- if you include the Alchemist or the Navigator, make sure to have the Thief in play. These 2 characters generate a huge amount of gold and if you dont counter them, they will dominate the game
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Branko K.
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Nidale wrote:
I'm one of them.

I'm getting this game for my birthday and I plan to play it for the first time with 5 other people who never played it before.

I learned all the rules online and I also made a quick reference sheet to teach it to everyone.

Should we play with the end game condition of 8 district or do you recommend that I lower the end game condition to 7 or even 6 since we are all new?

Of course I will be using the base game and not the expansion.


6 districts, remove all the purple cards, introduce a 30 second time for role selection.

You don't want your first game to drag, especially with that number of people. And with Citadels and certain kinds of people the game will die faster than a Sean Bean's character.
 
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Jim Marshall
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Definitely not 8 districts - I never play to more than 7.

For a first game, 6 may be best, but I'd up it to 7 once players are familiar with mechanics and roles (shoudn't take long - it's pretty simple).

With 6 ineperienced players, there is likely to be quite a lot of downtime especially in the role selection part of the turn.

I prefer the standard characters. I played with the optional ones a few times, but it seemed to upset the balance of the game. The standard characters are all good under the right circumstances.

The Assassin (and to an extent the Thief and Magician) can be brutal, but it is quite a confrontational game. That's how it's meant to be.
 
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Laurence Parsons
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Play with the rules as standard. Only introduce variants once you are familiar with the game. (surely good advice for any game). This will enable you to evaluate the game for yourselves, and also gives 'official' answers to any rules question. I'd also stick with the original roles and buildings.

I often play 6 players, and it doesn't drag as much as some suggest. Just make sure that all your players are happy to play at a 'learning' pace and that they appreciate this is not a 30-minute game.
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