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Power Grid: Québec/Baden-Württemberg» Forums » Rules

Subject: Ecological Power Plant Restrictions rss

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Jim Henderson
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Some people in our gaming group are interpreting the "Overview" section of the Quebec rules which states that "Once an ecological power plant has been added to the power plant market, it will remain until purchased by a player or removed when the number on it is lower than the number of cities power by any player" to mean that if an ecological power plant is the lowest plant in the market when everyone passes during the auction phase then you do not discard the ecological power plant! The Quebec rules after the "Overview" section under "Playing the Game" say nothing about this, so I contend that normal Power Grid rules apply whenever the expansion play rules do not specify a different procedure.

The rules for "Megawatts", which is the source for the Quebec map, support my contention. The English translation of the "Megawatts" rules states "If no plant is sold at all during the auction phase, remove the plant with the lowest value from the current market and replace it by drawing another plant from the deck."

Can anyone help us resolve this disagreement?
 
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Scott Wheelock
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Wouldn't that sentence mean nothing if you were right, since you'd be following the vanilla rules?

Edit: Ugh, totally forgot about Step 3-ing the highest plant, as stated below. Well, I don't know, then.
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Fraser
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I haven't seen the English edition rules as yet, but the quick translation from Mégawatts which was posted in early 2009 has not been called out as incorrect and states (amongst other things)

Translation wrote:
During Phase 5, never bury a green plant, if the highest plant is green, bury the highest non-green plant.
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H-B-G
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The overview section is merely a summary and is not, IMO, binding.

The only mention of this other than in the overview is under Phase 5, which states

English rules wrote:
When placing the highest power plant below the draw stack, never take an ecological power plant. Instead take the next highest power plant.


From this I take it that the only time you consider the type of plant when considering a discard, is during phase 5 in steps 1 & 2.

All that said, I think there is a wrong wording in the overview and it should actually refer to cities connected (not powered) by any other player, which would mean that green plants are discarded as normal during phase 4.
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Jake Troughton
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jrodgersh wrote:
Some people in our gaming group are interpreting the "Overview" section of the Quebec rules which states that "Once an ecological power plant has been added to the power plant market, it will remain until purchased by a player or removed when the number on it is lower than the number of cities power by any player" to mean that if an ecological power plant is the lowest plant in the market when everyone passes during the auction phase then you do not discard the ecological power plant!


I'm looking at my Mégawatts rules now, and (with the caveat that my French is not amazing, though I think it's up to this small task, and with the further caveat that I am currently very very tired) I do not see any statement to this effect. In fact, it seems pretty clear that the only changes from the normal rules are in preparation and phase 5.
 
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Alex Drazen
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I picked up Megawatts for kicks while in Quebec recently - my understanding (though I speak Spanish, not French) is that in the special rules for Quebec, the high plant isn't removed if it's ecological.

But this made me wonder: it is theoretically possible, although extremely unlikely, to have a market of 8 ecological plants (13, 18, 22, 27, 33, 37, 44, 50). Is no plant removed in this circumstance?

I also played a 2p in Quebec in which the bottom four plants were all ecological (50, 37, 27, 22, I think) early on. Does this mean we should still remove the highest plant from the top row? That just feels wrong... in any other Power Grid game, either the low plant comes out or the high plant moves under the deck (and I think both, on one board, maybe Benelux?).
 
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H-B-G
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alexdrazen wrote:
I picked up Megawatts for kicks while in Quebec recently - my understanding (though I speak Spanish, not French) is that in the special rules for Quebec, the high plant isn't removed if it's ecological.

But this made me wonder: it is theoretically possible, although extremely unlikely, to have a market of 8 ecological plants (13, 18, 22, 27, 33, 37, 44, 50). Is no plant removed in this circumstance?

I also played a 2p in Quebec in which the bottom four plants were all ecological (50, 37, 27, 22, I think) early on. Does this mean we should still remove the highest plant from the top row? That just feels wrong... in any other Power Grid game, either the low plant comes out or the high plant moves under the deck (and I think both, on one board, maybe Benelux?).


I haven't seen this discussed, so this is just our group interpretation (unless someone can point to a confirmation elsewhere), but we ruled when we played that the 50 plant is not ecological, although it doesn't use fuel.
 
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Alex Drazen
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Ah, makes sense. But what if the market was something like...

Current: 11, 14, 19, 25
Future: 27, 33, 37, 44 (all ecological)

Would the 25 be the plant that comes out and goes under the deck during the Bureaucracy phase during Step 1/2?
 
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Fraser
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A weird situation which may never occur, but yes the 25 is the highest non-ecological plant. So it gets buried.
 
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Alex Drazen
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I think the situation is most common in a 2p game in which the "random" plants removed are very high.

A standard game of Power Grid is comprised of 42 power plants. In a 2-player game, 8 are removed, and on the Quebec map, none of those removed can be ecological. This means that there are 34 plants in the 2p game. Eight of them are the standard starting market (03-08). The ecological plants are: 13, 18, 22, 27, 33, 37, 44 (but apparently not #50). Furthermore, you have a sequence 13-18-22 as the "first three plants" to come up.

So of the 34 plants, we can account for 11 of them, leaving 23 other plants, 4 of which are also green. So there are 19 non-green plants in the shuffled part of the deck in a 2p game, vs. 4 green plants.

Getting just one of the other wind plants (27, 33, 37, 44) before the 13 clears the top row is actually somewhat likely. This is because it takes at least 2 rounds in a 2p game for the 13 wind plant to reach the top row.

In round one, let's say the 04 and 05 get bought. The 13 and 18 will come out. Amusingly, during bureaucracy, the 10 (!) becomes the odd man out, and will likely never enter a 2p game on the Quebec map (presumably, by the time it returns, someone will have 10 cities). The new card drawn is the 22. So the market would become 03, 06, 07, 08, 09, 13, 18, 22 for Turn 2.

I'm not sure what anyone would want to buy here. Presumably, at least one player (the 05) sits. Thus either one plant is bought (the 08 by the 04-holder, who already has 2 coal?) and replaced or no plant is bought and the 03 comes out. The market is then 06, 07, 08, 09, 13, 18, 22, XX where XX is a random plant. There's a 4/23 (17%) chance at this point that plant XX is a green plant.

If both players bought (I guess the 05 holder could take the 03 for one turn?) the market is then 06, 07, 09, 13, 18, 22, XX, XX. Any combination of green/green or green/under 13 (of which the 11 and 12 could be in the deck) would result in a completely "green" future market. So there's a 6/23 x 5/22 (6%) chance of that happening.

Not impossible. The one 2p I did in Quebec, I think we had about 4-5 green plants on the market at one point, but they were mostly in the current market, not future.
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alexdrazen wrote:
Ah, makes sense. But what if the market was something like...

Current: 11, 14, 19, 25
Future: 27, 33, 37, 44 (all ecological)

Would the 25 be the plant that comes out and goes under the deck during the Bureaucracy phase during Step 1/2?
Karlsen wrote:
A weird situation which may never occur, but yes the 25 is the highest non-ecological plant. So it gets buried.

I'll dispute never. My first game on this map was a 4-player game, and, obviously, after the first 3 plants had been purchased, the 13, 18, and 22 were in the future market. After the fourth plant had been purchased, another ecological plant flipped. So the first plant that went under the stack was the #10.
 
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