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Subject: Help me please make the first play a success rss

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tiduz 99
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Hello All,

Picked this game up on the weekend as I haven’t purchased any board games for a while and as my play group used to play Warhammer it seemed like a good fit.

I did debate buying this game last year as I wanted to get my friends into board games. However I decided to pick-up Mage Knight in the end as at the time I was a little apprehensive around games that rely on the luck of a good dice roll.

I have come here to ask for some guidance on how to introduce this game to friends. My play group are sadly very rigid when it comes to trying new things. It tends to be a real mission to get them to leave Magic the Gathering for a weekend and try something a bit different.
To put this into perspective I only managed to get them all to play half a game of Dungeon Lords before it was condemned to gather dust in my cupboard. Occasionally I mutter “we should give Dungeon Lords a proper chance” only to be shot down!


With the above said I am just after some tips on how to present this game and whether there are any gotcha's which new players tend to slip up on when first playing...


Please help me board game lovers!
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Ed Bradley
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IF they aren't immediately won over by the evident genius and wonder that is Chaos in the Old World then I suggest you get rid of them and find new friends.
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Ron
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If you've played WFRP, then your friends will surely like it, and after looking at the game board, they will immediately want to play! (at least, that happened when I presented the game to WFRP group). It oozes the same atmosphere as the role playing game. It's dark and gritty. Grim and perilous. Just as the Warhammer world.

So my advise would be, go in with the theme! Explain the rules while referring to the Warhammer world! This is no dry Euro, this is a fine Ameritrash game with a heavy story built in it.

If you've played WFB, then you probably even have some painted minis to use! Great, even more atmosphere!

The rules aren't hard to teach. I'm sure, once the general idea of how to play the game settles in, you Warhammer friends will like that game!

Hail Sigmar!
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Gert Meyer
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+1 for selling the game through the theme.

Also, CitOW relies a lot on clever card play. And each god has a unique deck. Mention this up front as well. This should appeal to MtG players.

When it comes time explain rules, skip over the details of the Old World phase and Drawing phase and start with the Summoning phase and introduce the figures and cards first.

Dungeon Lords is a quite heavy Euro, albeit with a nicely integrated fantasy theme on top of it. It is very fiddly with lots of little rules and interacting bits and pieces. CitOW will be a lot closer to what they are used to in terms of complexity, bookkeeping, and pacing.
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tiduz 99
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lol to the finding new friends! laugh

Some good suggestions so far. Keep the coming please.


One of the group played as Chaos Space Marines in the table top figure game so this should be a good cross over for him in terms of theme.
Thanks for the reassurance that this game is quite easy to understand but difficult to master.


If it is not too much trouble could someone summarise the play style of each god? I think that if I tell them roughly how each god wins from the beginning this may ensure everyone enjoys the first play through. I don't want them to have a bad first game because their play style works against the chosen gods strengths if you see what I mean.
 
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Ed Bradley
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tiduz99 wrote:
lol to the finding new friends! laugh

Some good suggestions so far. Keep the coming please.


One of the group played as Chaos Space Marines in the table top figure game so this should be a good cross over for him in terms of theme.
Thanks for the reassurance that this game is quite easy to understand but difficult to master.


If it is not too much trouble could someone summarise the play style of each god? I think that if I tell them roughly how each god wins from the beginning this may ensure everyone enjoys the first play through. I don't want them to have a bad first game because their play style works against the chosen gods strengths if you see what I mean.


If you're familiar with warhammer you can work this out for yourself!:

Khorne - wins by killing people.
Nurgle - wins by spreading disease through populous areas.
Slaanesh - wins by corrupting the local nobles and seducing their opposition.
Tzeentch - wins by annoying the crap out of everybody with their shenanigans
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Gert Meyer
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tiduz99 wrote:
If it is not too much trouble could someone summarise the play style of each god? I think that if I tell them roughly how each god wins from the beginning this may ensure everyone enjoys the first play through. I don't want them to have a bad first game because their play style works against the chosen gods strengths if you see what I mean. :)


There is a small strategy guide for each god at the back of the rules. You could copy those and give them to the corresponding players after you draw gods.

But quick summary:

Khorne gets Dial ticks very easily and is a little shortchanged when it comes to scoring points. He profits the most direct from other players' mistakes and therefore tends to dominate newbie games quite often.

Nurgle has the longest Threat Dial and it is not realistically possible to win with him in any other way than points. Be careful not to Ruin regions too soon. As Nurgle you will want to grind out some Domination points from the valuable regions before they pop.

Tzeentch is the god of cards. Cheap and plentiful cards means he can often stall and have at least 2-3 Power left when everyone else is spent. Affords him a lot of flexibility. He has the most Cultists. I would say he can do both Dial and points at 50/50 odds depending on the intial token placement and which Old World cards get drawn along the way.

Slaanesh has some of the most interesting cards. But they need to be used wisely as they can be expensive. He can grind out points in many interesting ways. He also has the shortest Threat Dial and can be very strong on the Dial if lots of Nobles get placed early in the game.
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tiduz 99
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Thanks for the summary Gert. I think that it probably all they need to know for their first game. I will consult the rule book when home.

I realise the game is best played with 4 people and 3 if you must. However just for the purposes of learning the base mechanics of how a turn plays out...can I play with 2 players or is there something fundamental in the rules that prohibits it?
I am not expecting a well rounded game I just wanted to get to grips with the game before playing properly.

 
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Gert Meyer
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There is nothing in the rules that prohibit it. But the game is designed to have the powers balance each other out. That is best achieved with 4 players, but still mostly works with 3 (in my opinion).

However, with 2 I think that goes out the window. The game will still work from a mechanics point of view, but the gameplay experience will be broken.

So by all means, try it out to get the rules down. But do not expect the experience to be anywhere near what it should be. If you have the time, you could also just play against yourself and control all 4 powers, so you get to see all the cards in action.
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James
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This is an incredible game but a big step up from what they might be expecting from a board game (some groups are more tolerant of complexity in RPG's). For that reason I recommend printing off some key player aids. I recommend Universal Head's rules overviews here, Bigguyruy's player guides here, and Pastabatman's power summaries here. They might not refer to them, but the last thing you want is to be flipping through the rulebook or players mystified as to what they can and should do.

I would definitely sell them the game through theme. One of the best things about this game is that the theme matches the mechanics. You win as the god to the extent that you play like the god's personality. This is their chance to be evil and evil in their own special way. To help make that point, I recommend you send out e-mails with links to the following video review by the much loved Robert Florence. They'll laugh and they just might be champing at the bit to play the game without a sales job on your part.

http://boardgamegeek.com/video/1339/chaos-in-the-old-world/d...

Finally, I advise you go ahead and let the players know each god's basic strategy -- especially Khorne's. Khorne wins by killing other minions. He should chase them; they should run away. It is not game breaking or offering a spoiler to have everyone know this; believe me. If they don't realize this in the first one or two turns then they will realize it on turn three and then they'll be playing for another hour being angry at the game, probably losing because of incorrect play early in the game, too late in the game to change matters. Telling them this upfront will allow them to have a learning game and an authentic, enjoyable game, too. Chances are this title won't gather dust.

Good luck!
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Pasta Batman
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Brother Jim wrote:
... and Pastabatman's power summaries here.

Hey, glad to see someone is getting some use out of those. FYI, there is a much more graphical (and less wordy) version here.
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Gert Meyer
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pastabatman wrote:
Brother Jim wrote:
... and Pastabatman's power summaries here.

Hey, glad to see someone is getting some use out of those. FYI, there is a much more graphical (and less wordy) version here.


Oh, those are fantastic. They will be a big help when teaching this to new people in the future.
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James
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pastabatman wrote:
Brother Jim wrote:
... and Pastabatman's power summaries here.

Hey, glad to see someone is getting some use out of those. FYI, there is a much more graphical (and less wordy) version here.

Absolutely; we never play without them (added an overdue to the file)! Thanks for the heads up on the updated file; I had missed that.

Well done, Pastabatman; these should really come with the game.
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tiduz 99
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Printed all three of the files off this morning so I am ready to play with two players this week.

Come the weekend I should then fingers crossed have a 4 player game organised.

Very excited to have my first play..been watching some of the rule primer videos on here and feel this game will be exciting and easy to pick up!


Thanks for all the help. Please post anything else that may be helpful
 
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tiduz 99
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As said before I realise that a game is best suited to 4 so this is what I will strive for.

With two players and even three the game may feel broken. My question is can I limit this some what by excluding certain gods in a 2 player and 3 player game.



So for a two player game to come to terms with the rules and phases should I leave Khorne and ? in the box so it is not horrible broken?

For a three player game should I leave Nurgle in the box?

(The above Gods mentioned were just examples)

 
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Gert Meyer
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For the 2-player to be even remotely playable I would probably take out Khorne. Simply because it would just be a game of cat and mouse. Part of Khorne's challenge is to decide who and where to strike. With only one other player there isn't much there. Better to play it as a straight area majority game then.

But even more importantly I would consider pre-ruining Norsca and/or the Badlands. The board will simple feel too big and wide open with only 2 players.

As for 3 players, I think it works with any combination of gods. But the experience will change dramatically depending on who is left out. Particularly if Khorne is not there to chase Cultists down it will feel completely different.
 
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Colin Sham
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gert74 wrote:
As for 3 players, I think it works with any combination of gods. But the experience will change dramatically depending on who is left out. Particularly if Khorne is not there to chase Cultists down it will feel completely different.


There is a set of threads on the strategy section that discuss how the game feels and what each god should do when 1 of the 4 is left out. In the situation where Khorne is not around, it falls on Nurgle (and the 1 cost 1/1 plaguebearers) to balance out Slaanesh and Tzeentch.
 
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