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Subject: How does the game get balanced by number of survivors? rss

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Chris Miller
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I've looked over the rules but haven't played yet, so maybe I'm missing something. I don't see any mechanic in the game that balances out the opposition depending on if you're starting with 4, 5, or 6 survivors. The spawn rate is the same, the zombies get a turn only after all survivors have taken a turn, and their abilities don't change.

Wouldn't the game be too easy with 4 and/or too hard with 6 given that the zombies would not be adjusted either way?
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Adam Vajcovec
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I wondered the same thing early on. There is no method for balancing for different player counts that I've seen. Sentinels of the Multiverse made changes in later editions because it had this problem too and from what I've read it was a real balance issue. I picked up Zombicide anyway but I suspect it may need some house-ruling.

I mostly play solo so it might be as simple as finding the sweet spot (4 seemed to be the recommendation in the videos) and only playing with that many survivors. Otherwise maybe activate the zombies after x number of player turns? I'll have to play it first. Maybe it won't be that big of an issue.

Actually, there are two things that could smooth this out. One is that the spawn depends on the highest Danger Level of all the survivors, though this could be mitigated with careful play. The other is the possibility of finding a zombie when searching. More players means more searching and more zombies? Maybe? Not sure how much it'll help, we'll just have to play and see.
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Jon Simpson
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One consideration might be the search function, thats going to create zombies for each character that does a search and presumably they will need to do that if they want items.
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Alex Holker
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I'd expect the game to be hardest with 4 players and easiest with 2. The number of survivors goes 4, 6, 6, 4, 5, 6, but controlling more survivors per player makes you more flexible - both by letting you swap the order in which your survivors activate and because you don't have to worry about diplomacy.
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Chris Miller
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BaseTwelve wrote:
...

Actually, there are two things that could smooth this out. One is that the spawn depends on the highest Danger Level of all the survivors, though this could be mitigated with careful play. The other is the possibility of finding a zombie when searching. More players means more searching and more zombies? Maybe? Not sure how much it'll help, we'll just have to play and see.


On the first point, I think more players makes this easier since they spread the same number of zombie kills across more survivors.

Searching actually might be part of the answer, since the group starts with the same equipment and larger groups would means more survivors with only pans.
 
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Scott Hill
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Doesn't noise come into this as well?

Don't yet have the game (:sad face: at being in the UK), so have only read the rules, but...

As each survivor is equivalent to 1 noise token, the larger the team the noisier it is.

And, whenever the team gets split up, the larger group will attract the Zombies.

So, with 6 players, you could have one or two survivors off opening doors and searching all over the place, but the remain 4 or 5, even doing nothing, in a group together, could make more noise than the one or two that are separate.

Not sure that will make a huge difference, but it might.
 
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Chris Miller
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Noise doesn't generate zombies though, it just attracts them. If the turn will spawn 6 zombies, it's 6 zombies regardless if there are 2 or 6 survivors, and regardless of how little or much noise they made.

The louder group will attract the zombies but that is also the same regardless of the number of survivors.
 
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seb seb2
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humm i think you have a fixed number of survivors in each scenario...?
you dont play a scenario with the number you want.
or maybe i am wrong.
 
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Chris Miller
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Belsamoreth wrote:
humm i think you have a fixed number of survivors in each scenario...?
you dont play a scenario with the number you want.
or maybe i am wrong.


Scenarios do not have fixed number of survivors.
 
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Scott Hill
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MillertimeRC wrote:
Noise doesn't generate zombies though, it just attracts them. If the turn will spawn 6 zombies, it's 6 zombies regardless if there are 2 or 6 survivors, and regardless of how little or much noise they made.

The louder group will attract the zombies but that is also the same regardless of the number of survivors.


Yes, but, if you have 5 survivors in a tight group, they represent 5 noise tokens by themselves, even if they don't do anything, which means you could have one other survivor off somewhere else generating up to 3 additional noise tokens every turn, and he'll just be ignored by the zombies (unless they can see him) - making it tougher for the main group.
 
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Killa Mini's
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Easiest answer : play the game. I pre-read the rules and It still wasn't until I sat down and had a 2 hour playtest that all engines were a go. In terms of balancing..It's gonna be up to the owner to add or take away more complexity based on your preferences after playing lots. Have fun.
 
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Scott Hill
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Killaminis wrote:
Easiest answer : play the game.


That's easy for you to say, sitting there in the US, with your copy already delivered, and all!

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Bob Barker
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There is no scaling built into the game at all.

More characters makes the game much easier. You can spread out the xp so you don't level quickly, plus you get an extra 3-4 actions per player. So basically, ignore the suggested character per player count and play with at least 5 chars for the first few games, or 6 if you keep getting hosed.

Some people suggested a total action count for the survivors turn, then it wouldn't matter as much the number of characters.

Personally, I think it would be best if the zombie spawns scaled some how, but I haven't seen any suggestions for that.
 
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Since the game was not written to take into account any sort of scaling. (A major, major flaw of the game), I'd imagine the scenarios were all written to be challenging for 6 heroes in the game.

That said, we plan on playing every game with 6 heroes.

We tried less and it was not fun.
 
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Jack J.

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My friends and I played several scenarios last night. There were 7 of us and we used El Cholo, Nick, and Dave.

I think Nick is just over the top. Toughness is a real asset. The player using him was really in character and playing it John Mclain all the way. A complete loner. I used to think Wanda was a game changer due to her movement. But Nick. Dang. That man can just wade in. El Cholo is next after that.

The games did not seem to have any sort of the suspense it had when I played solo with 5 survivors, but was still extremely fun. We more or less were competing Legolas/Gimli style for zombie kills. we wanted orange levels!! I don't know if this was because we play tabletop strategy as our mainstay hobby and we had no problem or balance of so many players.....with 3 promos. We did play scenarios 1-3. We had abominations enter the board....but always seemed to have a molotov at the time. Ned with a flashlight is just insane. He and dave were best friends. Fattys were just annoyance since every one pretty much carried (by that time) 2 strength weapons.

The only part I find a little weird is that you can search a room until you get what you need. I guess the only pressure to get out is zombies piling up outside. Even still 7 players....lots of chances to get good loot. especially using Ned and Doug who have good chances of spreading the wealth around. The first scenario was particularly easy since we found all the food we needed and just had to go out to get the objective markers.

The 3rd scenario was probably the most problematic. We ended with half the players wounded. Still we all made it out for all three scenarios.

Next time we are going to try adding two spawn points for each player over 6. Not all the guys made it last night and next time we will have a couple more players.

Custom scenarios are in order though. with that many guns maybe a scenario where you need quiet....something like if noise tokens on the board get to 7 then an abomination comes to check it out.

Still this is a great game. Maybe we just had a really good night and the dice were with us, but it seemed like we could always handle the situation.
 
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JR Wr
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My thought was to have spawn points based on survivor count.
1 spawn for each survivor till 3.
And 1 spawn for every 2 survivors, or part there of, past 3.
ie.
Survivors = Spawn points as follows
1 = 1
2 = 2
3 = 3
4 = 4
5 = 4
6 = 5
7 = 5
8 = 6
9 = 6
10 = 7
and so on
 
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