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Subject: Too Little rss

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I am reviewing this game after only one playing. The one play will have to be sufficient, because there won't be another.

I was asked by my FLGS owner to try this game along with a couple of other guys from our weekly gaming group. My initial reaction was not positive. The game appeared to be an around-the-casino gambling game, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that it is actually a casino/hotel building game, supposedly in the "Euro-game" style. I rushed through the rules quickly as others set up the board and bits. All are decent, except that the players' individual casino/hotel mats are printed on plain old paper, which means that even with care they will end up a little wrinkly, and you could easily tear or punch holes through them. They'll hold up, but they probably won't look great for long, unless you only play the game once ever, like me, in which case they're perfect.

OK, I've already made it clear that I disliked the game so much that I'll never play it again. Another review has covered the turn order and general description, so I'll just cut to the meat. There's nothing really drastically wrong with this game, and I don't hate it, there just isn't much to it, and what there is made nearly no impression on me.

Much of the turn order is simply record-keeping -- the heart of the game is when each player either bids on a room for their hotel (which most players will likely do most of the time they have this option), or chooses one of two other options, which allow rooms to be shifted, and in one of these cases, a free point is scored.

So, essentially, you buy rooms for your hotel/casino and put them on your play mat. Anyone expecting much more to the game than this will be sorely disappointed. The rooms only come in three simple rectangular shape/size configurations, and most of them have so many doors (important to placing them legally) that it is very easy to correctly place rooms as soon as they are purchased, making the option to shift already-purchased rooms virtually useless.

Technically, you aren't just buying rooms, you're bidding on them against the other players, but if you lose a bid, you can shift to bid on something else for about the same price and buy the room you originally wanted on a subsequent turn without any seriously averse effect. In fact, the bidding seems to be almost meaningless, as everyone in the game I played eventually acquired nearly identical rooms, with a couple of important exceptions.

The "exceptions" are three rooms, namely one "Theater" and two "Night Clubs" [I think, I don't have the game in front of me] which score a ludicrous amount of points. The winner will always own at least one of these three rooms, I suspect. To acquire these rooms, you will have to be the player with the most money who goes first when they first appear (randomly) for auction, unless you can't bid on them that turn (which happens randomly) then you would want to be the next person, so you can bid on them first on the next turn.

So, how can you arrange to be in the correct order? I suppose you save your cash and cross your fingers, which seems like a viable strategy to this game. Another strategy would be to buy the cheapest thing available each turn and save your cash, which can be traded for points at the end of the game. I actually also think that a viable strategy would be to save ALL your cash and take the free point option every turn, then turn your money in for points at the end of the game, without ever bidding on anything or adding any rooms to your hotel.

Overall, this game struck me as terribly bland. I got the feeling I was putting carboard cutouts on paper, not building a casino. Of the three players, two of us were regularly forgetting to do all of our record-keeping correctly because we were so disinterested in the game. As an added kick, one of the numbers you track, called Population [if I remember correctly] is almost meaningless, anyway. There are ways to get bonus points, and a "tech tree," but their importance in the game are minimal, as it seemed painfully unchallenging to achieve most of the bonuses, and the points weren't enough to sway the scores, which diverged mostly because of the few crazy-high scoring rooms. I won't play this game again, because I can't see trying to niggle a couple of more points out of getting a few bits of cardboard properly aligned.

This latest offering from Hasbro under the Avalon Hill name is certainly a competition in a box, since you try to outscore your opponent, but is that enough to make it a game? I didn't once feel like I was "playing" and I certainly wasn't having fun. I get much the same feeling with this game as I get when enduring a session of Amun-Re -- that I'm not playing a game, but I'm just engaging in manipulating a scoring system.
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Sean McCarthy
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A few comments.

I don't mind that you don't like this game, even though I personally do. I can easily understand that if you don't like Amun-Re, you might not like this one.

But your criticisms of strategic shallowness seem wrong to me. I think that one game probably isn't enough to understand what's going on.

You say the Night Club and Theater are crucial for winning. In my 3 games, I never got any of those buildings, and I can in 2nd, 2nd and 1st respectively. (And although the player with the Theater won the first game, the player with both night clubs lost worse than I did.) These are certainly strong buildings, but you have to do more to win than spend all your moeny on 8 points.

No, you couldn't win by saving up your cash and turning it in for points.

No, population isn't pointless. It's stupid to get way more population than money - but that's because of bad play. It's also stupid to get much more money than population. So what?

You say that all there is is maintainance and bidding. Congratulations, this is a bidding game! That's what you do. Also, when you bid well, I'm pretty sure it's more strategic than you make it out to be.

Sorry for being so harsh. It just really bugs me when people say there's no strategy, and there is. I still think you're a great person and all.
 
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Alex Rockwell
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Maybe you were disappointed because you wanted a gambling game and instead got an economic auction game (with some princes of florence board maangement thrown in).

I would say the game is similar to Amun Re in depth, and has quite a bit to it.


Also, I should note that there is the rule of Dan and Alex's game preferences, which states that if Dan likes a game, then I will probably dislike it, or think its just ok, and if I like a game, then Dan will dislike it, or think its just ok.

The corollary of this is that because I like a lot of games, Dan likes few games.

The only exception to the rule is Werewolf.
 
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I'm sorry that I wrote my English in English so I made it difficult for readers to understand, so I will re-state, in English, the parts I mistakenly formerly wrote clearly in English, so as to clarify. I will employ "extraneous quotation marks," primarily for humorous effect.

First, the big issue with the game is that it is one-dimensional (and tedious). You just bid on rooms, that's it. If you are a big enough monkey that you put the rooms in the wrong place, you will have to waste turns moving them around. I am not a big enough monkey to have had to do this, nor was anyone I played with. Perhaps if you play with nine-year-old players, they will spend turns moving their rooms around. This game will play unpredictably with people with lesser, or as-yet-undeveloped intellects, so, in these cases, you may disregard my review.

There is definitely some finite amount of strategy involved in deciding which room to bid on and how much to bid. In my opinion the game is more than a bit dull, and there is not forty dollars worth of strategy in making the which-room/how-much decision. For you, there might be. For me, there is not.

Population matters. It just doesn't matter VERY MUCH. It is "nearly extraneous." Tracking it becomes "tedious busy-work," like much of this game. If you ignore the population thingie and only count it up at the end of the game, you might still win it. No one will contest it very adamantly, because it isn't very important. The person who wins it will probably do so only incidentally, except in the unlikely event that they don't find this game to be a big, dull dud and they concentrate enough on playing this game to have a "population strategy." This would be "sad," because such a person would have "no life," and could spend their time playing "better games."

I was, as I said in English, "pleasantly surprised" that this was not a casino gambling simulator. Therefore it is "putting words in my mouth," to suggest that I didn't like the game because I was hoping that it WAS a casino gambling simulator. In fact, it more than just assuming something, it's suggesting the exact opposite of what I wrote.

To re-iterate, I played this game once, I thought it stunk the room up so much that I won't play it again, and I have clearly laid out the reasons why. Obviously, not everyone on the planet will agree with me, but I resolutely and sincerely stand by my observations.
 
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Brad Miller
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Ack! Dan's "turning" 'into' Grognads!
 
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david karasick
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You must have been playing some other game. We just finished playing a 3 player game and it was very enjoyable. The game rules are easy to learn and the bidding wars are minimal at 3 player . Anyone who dislikes this game has a "chip" on their shoulders, no pun intended. The components are routine but the game is not. Viva Las Vegas!
 
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Steve Perucca
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Actually, take a look at this reviewer's profile and you'll see that he rated Puerto Rico a 3 and Amun-Re a 1. He obviously likes the Catan series, which is normal. But some of his other ratings aren't consistant with the general BGG population.

So, I'd say this review doesn't reflect the general consensus. Personally, I perceive the game will be very enjoyable, maybe even preferable for some who like bidding/building games like Princess of Florence and Amun-Re (because of the varieties created from the Event deck -- though they are luck-based).

Plus, this reviewer doesn't even use the BGG "games-played" feature, so I can only speculate what kind of games he plays based on his ratings.

So, my recommendation is to take this review with a "grain of salt" and wait to see what other reviewers say. I own this game, but haven't played it yet. Hopefully, I can review it next week after I get my local buddies to play it with me. I anticipate some might not like it like this reviewer, but I'd say more than half will like it enough to play it again.
 
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These are the lamest replies to a review. If you disagree with something, try to be direct and say what it is, and we could maybe debate it or agree to disagree. I thought about defining the word "opinion" here, but I think it's beyond help.

"I never played the game, but this guy doesn't like Puerto Rico, so his opinion counts for nothing," is not a valid argument -- in fact, it's embarrassingly stupid. Perhaps that says something about those who like Puerto Rico.

Maybe we could call an end to the personal attacks and discuss games, but really, this game doesn't deserve much discussion. It's simple, it's random, it's not much fun. Why I even need to type this, I'm not sure, but here it goes: I know the whole world is not going to agree with me.

If you ever find yourself not agreeing with someone, take a deep breath and be happy you live in a place and time where free speech is purportedly legal. If you feel the need to make a reply to this review that goes something like, "you suck," or, "it is, too, fun," please hold that thought until you are on a website about Star Wars or video games, or, at least try playing the game before you weigh in on how good it is.
 
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Sean McCarthy
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Which comment are you referring to?
 
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Steve Perucca
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He's probably referring to my "with a grain of salt" comment.

All I'm trying to point out is that your dislike of a similar, BGG-popular game (Amun-Re) exhibits your dislike for bidding, building games. Your love of the Catan series exhibits your preference for random-production, trading, building games.

If I asked a democrat to rate G.W.Bush, I know what the answer would probably be. If I asked you to rate Princes of Florence (which you haven't yet), I know what the answer would be (based on your negative opinion of similar games).

That's all I'm pointing out to the general BGG population here. A democrat's opinion is generally meaningless to a republican, and vis versa.

BTW, some of the negative aspects of Vegas that you've pointed out, I could say the same thing about Catan. Catan is random. Everyone in Catan is essentially building the same thing.

Also, your satirical comment about publisizing every turn and saving up your money for points is absurd. That comment alone exhibits the passion rather than the rationale in your review.

Finally, I WILL give you credit for pointing out the big green, mega-point rooms. Indeed, those rooms can be game-winners.

So, other than the big green thingee, all I got from your review was (and after doing some background checking into your profile), "This reviewer doesn't like bidding/building games. Because Vegas Showdown is a bidding/building game, I don't like it."

Now, if you actually DO like Princes of Florence, I might be interested in reading your review to find out why you flip-flop.

That's all. No offense intended.
 
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I was referring to the comments that I disliked the game because I:

- don't like many games (Alex likes fewer games than me, he's just in denial about it. Ask him to play Twilight Imperium, or Settlers of Catan, or Doom, or Age of Steam, or Magna Grecia, etc, etc, etc.)

- was expecting a different kind of game (?)

- have a chip on my shoulder (against what? games in general?)

- don't like Puerto Rico (or the implication that I don't understand games very good if I don't like Puerto Rico, and my opinion should therefore be taken with a grain of salt)

I honestly think this is a screamer of a bad game. I panned it miserably in my review and made a few jokes because I thought it would be funny, and I would get some enjoyment after playing the game -- I certainly didn't get any enjoyment during playing it.

I really like Modern Art, Traumfabrik, Age of Steam, and other bidding games. VS is unusual in that, at least in the three-player game, there are many more things to buy each turn than bidders, so you can usually get something cheaper, later, without giving up much. With a few exceptions, you don't bid much, you just buy what you want. When something good does come up for sale, the guy who goes first can often just outbid everyone and get it, which makes the bidding pretty luck-oriented. In Modern Art and Traumfabrik, you sweat every buck you spend, and every little thing you buy affects the outcome of the game. In VS the bidding is not as taught, and since everyone buys a lot of Slots, for example, not every purchase seems all that important. Matter of opinion, sure, but it's not for me.

The building aspect of the game is really light. Slap 'em down as you buy 'em and you'll do fine. Honestly, has anyone played this many times and had to carefully move their rooms around and plan for them? It seemed very straight-forward to me, I mean, it took a little thought, but not much, and I never made an error that I had to correct, nor did anyone else I played with. That makes it seem too simple to be considered a serious game mechanic. There are plenty of ways to score points depending on how your rooms are placed, but I think any decent player given a particular set of rooms could maximize the points scored with those rooms without expending much time or mental effort.

You could take a few different tacks to the game, like trying to spend very little, or acquire a certain set of rooms, or make a large income, but it's far from having strategic depth. There aren't feints and ploys, flanking, maneuvering. There's no flow to the play, so that you must plan an opening, then set yourself to dominate the end-game play. You don't try to look weak where you are strong so as to capitalize on your opponent's mis-step. There just isn't much scope to the game.

By the way, I HATE Princes of Florence, but only because there is little interaction between players. You can almost go into seperate rooms to play, then get back together to compare scores at the end.

It's a little silly to say that anyone who likes bidding games will like VS, and it doesn't matter what non-bidding game people think. Trust me, I could find a bidding game you bidding game people would hate. Hoity Toity might be a good place to start.

Finally, and this is pretty much pure opinion, it's just frikkin dull. Buy a room, plonk it down, repeat. That is *IT*. Nothing more. It's just not anywhere near enough for me, and I'm astonished that so many people, possibly representing a general consensus, feel otherwise. I'll re-assert that this game is awfully thin, and I doubt owners of it will still be playing it in six months.
 
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Alex Rockwell
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ChaosOrdeal wrote:
I was referring to the comments that I disliked the game because I:

- don't like many games (Alex likes fewer games than me, he's just in denial about it. Ask him to play Twilight Imperium, or Settlers of Catan, or Doom, or Age of Steam, or Magna Grecia, etc, etc, etc.).


I think there moight be less LONG games that I like than you, but I think I like more games overall.

Twilight Imperium, yes I think it sucks. SoC I find too random. Doom I like pretty well, and I think its good, though not completely balanced. Age of Steam is good, but its kindof long, which is why I tended to not play it. Never played Magna Grecia, I have no opinion about it.
 
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ChaosOrdeal wrote:
It's a little silly to say that anyone who likes bidding games will like VS, and it doesn't matter what non-bidding game people think. Trust me, I could find a bidding game you bidding game people would hate. Hoity Toity might be a good place to start.


I like Hoity toity. I wouldnt call it a bidding game though...maybe blind bidding. Its more like rock paper scissors...its a psychology game where you try to chooser the move that beats the other players moves.


Regarding the vegas showdown room placement: its usually easy and occasionally tough. Which is good, because if it tough frequently, you would have to wait for people a lot to place their rooms. There will usually only be 1-2 times a game where you have a hard decision about it, but it is probably going to come up at some point.

Regarding the auctions, its all about getting what you need, and not overpaying for it. Having enough money to buy things that are cheap enough, and enough to slightly overbid the others when they want them. Given that you can see the price reductions coming, and the turn button going around, and how much money and income people have, turns ahead of time, you can plan for things most of the time (though occasionally cards will screw it up). Its not that random, though its not certain either.
 
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Lyman Hurd
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The "exceptions" are three rooms, namely one "Theater" and two "Night Clubs" [I think, I don't have the game in front of me] which score a ludicrous amount of points. The winner will always own at least one of these three rooms, I suspect. To acquire these rooms, you will have to be the player with the most money who goes first when they first appear (randomly) for auction, unless you can't bid on them that turn (which happens randomly) then you would want to be the next person, so you can bid on them first on the next turn.


Well I did enjoy my one playing of the game, bt I have to admit that this statement makes some sense. I ended up winning and it was almost directly attributable to the points I was able to gain from the Night Club. The sheer number of points did seem a bit disproportionate to the cost however if my fellow players had read the card as carefully as I had, the bididng might have been more competitive!

 
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Darrell Hanning
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Since your income is the lower of either your population or your income, it logically follows that population is as important as your income, which is inconsistent with the conclusion of the reviewer.

I've played this game four times, now, and if you're going through a whole game without rearranging rooms at any time, you are either buying only the small tiles, or not having to settle for tiles different from what you wanted, during the auctions, or not attempting to align the special features tile-edges, for bonus victory points. Which is not to say you can't win in this manner, but it does seem statistically unlikely, over the course of multiple playings.

I like the game because it's new, and it's different enough - but I'm more enthusiastic about playing it with the more casual gamers in my life, such as my daughter, than I am with the more serious gamers.

I'd play Vegas Showdown before I'd play many games I've bought in the past, but I also don't think it's the greatest thing since sliced bread. I would have liked differing layout maps for the player's buildings (an L shape would have been interesting, for example), and some good, 2-player rules. I don't think it's nearly as good with 3, either, as it is with 4.
 
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Steve Perucca
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I can't count the number of games I've disliked games after just one play for whatever reasons. However, on some occasions, I've revisted the game, played with someone who really liked the game and understood the strategies, afterwards becoming a fan of the game. Knizia's Poison sucked for me the first time I played it. However, I later bought it, played it with my family and other light gamers, and now really enjoy it.

So, I'd personally never review a game after just one play or base my decision to buy the game based on such a review.

Nevertheless, your review as a 1-timer has been helpful in my search for better win-strategies for Vegas Showdown.

You don't like Princes of Florence because of little interaction between players? I can understand that. I play Catan NOT to win, but because of the enjoyment of the player interaction, especially when I play it with my siblings.

I like AlexR's comment about perhaps liking more games overall. It's often easier to get players to play the games you really like if you'll at least pretend to enjoy playing games with them that they really like.
 
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Daniel Kearns
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Quote:

Actually, take a look at this reviewer's profile and you'll see that he rated Puerto Rico a 3 and Amun-Re a 1. He obviously likes the Catan series, which is normal. But some of his other ratings aren't consistant with the general BGG population.

So, I'd say this review doesn't reflect the general consensus. ....

So, my recommendation is to take this review with a "grain of salt" and wait to see what other reviewers say.


Zowie! Not liking Peurto Rico can actually hurt your credibility.
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Steve Perucca
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A gamer who doesn't like PR is akin to a Republican you doesn't like GWBush. Not mainstream, but factional.

This review was majorly helpful to the factional few, and only minorly helpful to the mainstream many.

 
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Robert Cannon
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dkearns wrote:
Quote:

Actually, take a look at this reviewer's profile and you'll see that he rated Puerto Rico a 3 and Amun-Re a 1. He obviously likes the Catan series, which is normal. But some of his other ratings aren't consistant with the general BGG population.

So, I'd say this review doesn't reflect the general consensus. ....

So, my recommendation is to take this review with a "grain of salt" and wait to see what other reviewers say.


Zowie! Not liking Peurto Rico can actually hurt your credibility.


Well I find hard to trust ANY review of someone who would rate Amun-Re a 1. Amun-Re is not broken, it doesn't cause warts and the box doesn't cut your fingers when you open it. It's alright if you don't like a game, but that doesn't necessarily mean the game is total crap. So, it tells me this person cannot be objective.
 
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Brad Miller
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I disagree. If played with certain groupthink mechanics going on, it is pretty broken. I know, because I've played with the same folks Dan has, and when I played, it did feel broken...
 
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Windopaene wrote:
I disagree. If played with certain groupthink mechanics going on, it is pretty broken. I know, because I've played with the same folks Dan has, and when I played, it did feel broken...


I can see this too. If you were the kind of person who didn't like Amun-Re, you could easily see it as broken. I myself am unhappy with the amount of positive reinforcement of the farmer/non-farmer strategies.


But I agree with the general sentiment being expressed in response to Dan's review: If you don't like games like Amun-Re or Puerto Rico, you're not the target audience for Vegas Showdown. As long as everyone's clear about that, I think this is a useful review.
 
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Brian Newman
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Thank you for your review. I'll go into my first playing of this game with some of your points in mind, especially about the Big Three rooms, and how easy it is to form the bonus diamonds.

Though I think randomly insulting strangers via keyboard is probably not a winning life strategy.
 
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ChaosOrdeal wrote:
The rooms only come in three simple rectangular shape/size configurations, and most of them have so many doors (important to placing them legally) that it is very easy to correctly place rooms as soon as they are purchased, making the option to shift already-purchased rooms virtually useless.

First, "renovation" is more a resort than an option. The aim when placing your rooms is to avoid having to renovate later. So if you (really) do not have to renovate, you have played well and it is not a problem of the game. But it is important that the choice of renovation is available, so that one who has built a not-so-good setup is not permanently screwed, etc.

Second, it really depends on which rooms you get. Many of the premier rooms, not only the Theater and the Night Clubs, have very few doors, especially those with red corners. Incidentally, they give significant amount of VP too. If everybody gets only the easy rooms, then it is easy to place everything, and the players who get the "big 3" will definitely win (because nobody else has anything to compete with them). But if players play a more balanced strategy, then it is not so trivial to optimize placements, and the winner will be the one who best balances many factors, including timing (early-game income vs. late-game VP) and getting the best bargain buys on everything (not just the big 3).

Third, the game is really clever in this aspect: early-game VP is not good timing, but the Lounges have the most doors (the only tiles with doors on all 4 sides), and really makes placement easy (especially, they are best for placement at an entrance). This balances out their usefulness in the early game.

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The "exceptions" are three rooms, namely one "Theater" and two "Night Clubs" [I think, I don't have the game in front of me] which score a ludicrous amount of points. The winner will always own at least one of these three rooms, I suspect. To acquire these rooms, you will have to be the player with the most money who goes first when they first appear (randomly) for auction, unless you can't bid on them that turn (which happens randomly) then you would want to be the next person, so you can bid on them first on the next turn.

To win, you will always need a number of rooms which give you high VP, but there are quite a few other rooms which give you 4 or 6 VPs too. Why can't I win with a Fancy Lounge and a Dragon Room (4 + 6 VP) instead of a 8/12 VP room? The big 3 are effective, but they are far from being unbalanced.

Saving up all your money to get the Theater (at the MSRP of $52) far from guarantees victory, even if the Theater does come up. If my opponents save their money for the Theater while I buy two more Fancy Lounges at one discount ($25) each, and I manage to put them together, I score 4 + 4 VP, plus 3VP for the diamond in the middle. So I'm now behind by 2VP (against 12 for the Theater plus one Publicity), no big deal. And there are then a couple of event cards which may give me the edge.

If I can get many tiles discounted twice or so, I'm pretty sure that I can easily beat those players who buy the big 3 at MSRP.

Quote:
So, how can you arrange to be in the correct order? I suppose you save your cash and cross your fingers, which seems like a viable strategy to this game. Another strategy would be to buy the cheapest thing available each turn and save your cash, which can be traded for points at the end of the game. I actually also think that a viable strategy would be to save ALL your cash and take the free point option every turn, then turn your money in for points at the end of the game, without ever bidding on anything or adding any rooms to your hotel.

These are all stupid strategies which stand no chance against a well-played balanced strategy, of looking for good value (bargains) for your buys, and balancing well the basic Petersburg/PR timing principles vs. tile placement restrictions.

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Overall, this game struck me as terribly bland. I got the feeling I was putting carboard cutouts on paper, not building a casino. ... As an added kick, one of the numbers you track, called Population [if I remember correctly] is almost meaningless, anyway.

This, coupled with another earlier comment of yours which said that everybody is getting the same rooms with no meaningful competition, reveals that your players are clearly lacking a basic understanding of the game.

One starts with 5 revenue and 8 population. So, to increase one's income initially, one needs to get revenue; population isn't useful until later. If the players understand this point, they will bid up the slot machines instead of settling for the not-so-useful (yet) restaurant. Then, someone will reach a point when his revenue approaches his population, so that he needs also to increase population in order to increase income. But if the players just play brainlessly and waste their money on too much population before they need it, then we will see your result that "population is meaningless".

If players understand the usefulness of Slot Machines at the start of the game, you'll see more bidding-up of them. If you buy something else and hope to get a Slot Machines cheaper next turn, you can't: you'll be over-bid again next turn!

You are building a casino, and it is important to start boosting your revenue early on. Don't let someone buy a Slot Machine for $5 (or even $7!) while you buy a Restaurant or get Publicity.

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There are ways to get bonus points, and a "tech tree," but their importance in the game are minimal, as it seemed painfully unchallenging to achieve most of the bonuses, and the points weren't enough to sway the scores, which diverged mostly because of the few crazy-high scoring rooms.

This is clearly false, just by looking at the magnitude of the end-game bonus points and the VP values of other rooms available.
 
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Todd Sweet
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As an added kick, one of the numbers you track, called Population [if I remember correctly] is almost meaningless, anyway.

I'm not going to get into anything, but that you might have missed a major rule and therefore you are judging the game incorrectly:

Collecting Income: "The banker gives each player an amount of money chips equal to the LESSER of that player's Population and Revenue numbers ($5 to start)."

Population is therefore very important because it relates to how much money you get along with your revenue number.

Anyways, I like the game a lot and whether you do or don't doesn't really bother me, but I just hope you play the game correctly before bashing it so much.
 
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Alan Kwan
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ChaosOrdeal wrote:
The rooms only come in three simple rectangular shape/size configurations, and most of them have so many doors (important to placing them legally) that it is very easy to correctly place rooms as soon as they are purchased, making the option to shift already-purchased rooms virtually useless.

After working on my strategy article, I can now see clearly what is so wrong with this statement. The rooms with "many doors" tend to be the ones which are the least valuable in many other aspects (weak printed values and no red corners). Doors score nothing. (Well, perhaps 3 points for connecting your Hotel with your Casino, but that's it.) I can now soundly, consistently beat such novice players by a large margin.

The games in which I have the most headache in placing my tiles, are usually the ones I win. Fancy Restaurants rock.
 
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