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Subject: My first (partial) play impressions rss

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Steven Durst
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I just received my kickstarter copy of RtE Saturday and got a 4 player game in with my gaming group on Sunday. We only played halfway through (all the Early chips) before 1 person had to leave so this is only a partial play.

Setup: 4 players, France (me), England, Sweden, and Poland. Favorites passed out. I recruited several military and science favorites hoping to get a few territories and increase my lead on the science track (of which I was already on spot 1). Poland went heavy science faves, and England and Sweden did a fairly even spread with some anti-catholics mixed in.

I won't go turn by turn but some highlights (military first). On turn 2 I attempted to invade England's (my girlfriend's devil) territory of Luxemburg. I caught her by surpirse and managed to roll 11 dice to try and make 3. I failed miserably with only a single 6. The next turn she attempted to punish me by trying to take my northernmost port in France and she rolled 12 dice, and she failed with only a single 6. The only other battle was from Poland who attempted to invade a def 2 city in the Ottoman Empire. As I was allied with Poland (Catholic alliance I did not interfere but both England and Sweden applied a single luminary to the defense). Poland got to roll 22 dice and failed to get a single 6. So from just our few outings in the military world, it was going to be tough. Though to be fair, statistically speaking only Poland's attack had the odds on it's side to roll enough 6s. No territories were taken. England and France played piracy cards on each other after their failures at battle for the rest of the game.

Even though I didn't have many cultural luminaries, I had several others that got me advanced up the arts/culture track very quickly and I secured both medals and was sitting on the top spot at the end of our shortened game. Poland initially got the first medal on the science track but faded back after being bypassed from Poland who was atop the science track (with the medal) at the end.

Both Poland and myself were slacking on religion and the anti-catholics got the religion track all the way over to their side before the Catholics started making a comeback on the last 2 turns (but still fell short).

Final (partial)score:
France: 5 (2 arts medals, 3 for being top arts guy)
England: 2 (2 for anti-catholic track)
Sweden: 6 (1 science medal, 2 anti-catholics, 3 for being tops science)
Poland: 3 ( 1 science medal, 1 second place arts, 1 for second place science)

So Sweden squeaked me out by a point, the difference being the religion track (which I ignored to my detriment). Winning the cultural tracks at the end was a beefy 3 points, so was obviously very important.

Conclusions:
The game was a little slow at start as I explained the rules (or had to look up again to verify) and people had to do alot of reading to see what their cards could do. A couple of combos came up for people (I had one luminary that advanced 2 on the arts track and had to pay 5 money but I had a favorite that canceled the money cost making a free 2 arts). It seemed that in order to be successful at military conquest, one had to have alot of military luminaries (and a military favorite to guarantee some fight every turn). Money helped too but I overspent on my first conquest and ended up not being able to pay my upkeep the following turn after a timely piracy against me by England.

I really enjoyed the game and am really looking forward to getting a full game of 7 people in to make a truly epic experience. Do set aside quite a bit of time for your first game though but it went pretty smooth by the 3rd turn or so. I give it an 8 out of 10.

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Francisco Pizarro
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Glad you had a good time Steven and thanks for the write up!

Don't forget (and I added this to the FAQ as it's an easy rule to overlook) that the Ottomans get a base defense value of 15 when defending on land which is subtracted from the attacker's total. When Poland attacked the Ottomans and the Swedes and English aided the defenders, was 22 dice the correct number? (if so that's a LOT of attack cards and coin!)

If we are ever able to do a 2nd printing we'll add those base numbers to the map.

--bill



 
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Steven Durst
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Francisco,
No we played that wrong so bad on us. I explained it wrong that non-players had no power level and everybody was allied with them. So I guess it should have only been 7 dice. So attacking is really really hard in this game.

So to follow up, the FAQ says you have to pay 5 politics to attack a non-player Major Power (such as Ottomans) but do you have to ally (pay 5 politics) with them to help them out against other powers? And if so, does this count as the 1 ally limitation for Poland?

Where in the rulebook does it state the 15 land/10 sea power for Ottomans?
 
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Francisco Pizarro
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The top of page 9 under Major Powers.

edit -- yes you have to exhaust the 5 politics to ally with the Ottomans (or any non player Major Power).
 
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