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Puerto Rico» Forums » Variants

Subject: Olde Town Auction Variant rss

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Mario Lanza
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I have a group of friends who plays the same few games over and over. So when a game grows old, they sometimes look to add new twists. This is one of their better variants.

Each player is given 7 coin for a pre-game auction.

The auction consists of:
* the buildings (at normal cost)
* colonists in bundles of 2 – number of pairs equals number of players (costs 2 coin per pair)
* plantation tiles, one of each including a quarry (costs 1 coin per tile)

A starting auctioneer is chosen randomly.
The auctioneer puts an item up for bid by making a starting bid himself.
The initial bid on an item can be as much as 3 under its cost (allowing for bargains).
The bid on an item continues until everyone but a lone high bidder has passed.
Won colonists can be immediately allocated.
The auctioneer position passes clockwise.
When only one player has money left, he may spend his remaining capital (no bargain prices!).

Afterwards:

Players receives their normal starting capital adding it to any auction capital they conserved.
The player to the left of the player with the least valuable plantation (quarry outranks coffee) becomes the governor.
If no plantations were taken, randomly assign the governor.
The colonist ship is loaded according to building vacancies causing the first couple mayor rounds to be colonist rich.

This variant accelerates the development process by allowing players to start with semi-established tableaus. It shaves a third off the normal duration and makes it interesting to see how certain starting positions fare against others.
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Andrew Miller
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So when you list the costs of the plantations and colonist pairs, are those just minimum starting bids?

For buildings, it seems you can bid below cost, at cost, or in the case of heavy competition, above cost. So what's the meaning of the "(at normal cost)"?

EDIT: I forgot to mention that this variant sounds REALLY cool, and I'm excited to try it out.

--ElSoy
 
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Mario Lanza
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ElSoyokaze wrote:
So when you list the costs of the plantations and colonist pairs, are those just minimum starting bids?


No. Those are the normal cost. You could still bid less (up to 3 less, which basically means 1 for a colonist pair). You obviously couldn't bid less than 1 for a plantation.

ElSoyokaze wrote:
For buildings, it seems you can bid below cost, at cost, or in the case of heavy competition, above cost. So what's the meaning of the "(at normal cost)"?


Correct. You can bid 3 less for things if you want. That is, you could bid 1 for a small warehouse instead of 3. You could bid 3 for a coffee factory instead of 6. It doesn't mean you'll win it at that cost if others bid more. But generally you'll get a bargain, because you could always put up another coffee factory on a later turn.

Also, when you're the last guy left with money, you'd have to buy the coffee factory at cost (i.e. 6). Last guy left gets no discounts. Here's where you'd have to pay 2 for a colonist pair.

"At normal cost" was just meant to convey that buildings are already marked with their prices. Colonist pairs and plantations are unmarked, because (in a normal game) you can't buy them.

Once the game has begun, everything else is normal rules. None of the variant rules would remain.

Let me know what you think. I played it twice last night and thought it was good. My friends have played it way more than that.
 
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Andrew Miller
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Gotcha. I just hadn't realized that those parentheticals applied only to the last guy to have money.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to playtest this for a while. The only people I'll be around for the next couple of months are entirely unfamiliar with Euro games (though I taught them PR last night for their first game!).

--ElSoy
 
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