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Subject: Making All the Wonders Equal rss

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Steven Albano
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So... It was brought up in another thread, and this has been bothering me for some months now. (I know, I'm insane. Whatever.)

I believe that all the wonder boards in the base game are basically even.

However... It was brought to my attention that there is a board where 1 side is always better than the other. ALWAYS. (Okay... maybe 99% percent of the time.)

And that is Ephesus! Its side B is so much better than its side A, that it is scary!

Let's compare what happens when you build each stage of the wonder and compare.

Side A, Stage 1 - 3VP, 0G - 3 total VP
Side B, Stage 1 - 2VP, 4G - 3 total VP with 1 gold to spare

Now, so far, Side B is better. It has a higher total worth and is much more flexible. Let's see what happens when we add Stage 2 to the mix.

Side A, Stage 1&2 - 3VP, 9G - 6 total VP
Side B, Stage 1&2 - 5VP, 8G - 7 total VP with 2 gold to spare

The only benefit given to Side A is its total amount of gold once they both get to Stage 2. However, that really isn't that great a benefit. The difference of 1 gold really doesn't matter that much in the long run, and it comes at the disadvantage of being 1 whole victory point behind Side B.

Not very good at all. What we have to take into consideration too is that so far both sides and stages have had equal resources. If something was different, the comparison between the two would be much more difficult to make, but as they are equal, you can see that Side B is just better.

Let's check out what happens when you add the final stage into the mix.

Side A, Stage 1&2&3 - 10VP, 9G - 13 total VP
Side B, Stage 1&2&3 - 10VP, 12G - 14 total VP

The final difference here is that Side B gets a total of 3 more coins than A. All in all that doesn't seem like a very huge difference, but there is a clear distinct advantage here that just is not prevalent in other Wonders.

It is also important to note that final resource cost to build the third stage of the Wonder are different. A needs one Papyrus and B needs Glass and Cloth. There are many different ways of interpreting which one is harder, and I have been trying to justify to myself that getting Glass and Cloth in a game is much harder than just Papyrus to justify the difference between the Wonders' power, but I just was unable to do it.

SOOOO.

To keep this from getting too long, has anybody else noticed it? Does it bother anyone else?

I think making A's Stage 2 give you 12 gold would make them exactly even in the total amount of point you get to at the end, but allow them to function completely differently in the game. With A you get a windfall probably somewhere in Age II but B gives you steady gold throughout the game.

Thoughts?
 
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B C Z
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Reston
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I think things are allowed to be different.

Have you run a similar cost analysis on every other wonder?
 
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Jacek Deimer
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Generally B-sides are better on every wonder except Olympia (A-side has quite good second stage), or at least more interesting.
Usually we play A-sides only when teaching new players!

Also third stage on all A grey-resource boards requires 2 of the same manufactured resource and that may be hard to get. So I wouldn't say they are perfectly balanced.

WHen you add Roma, Byzanthium, Petra and 2 promo boards to he mix you will see greater variance in wonder abilities. So looking for perfect balance may be hard. You have just to adapt to your wonder or ignore it in your strategy.
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Jordan " ; " Czop
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Me having Ephesus side B last night didn't stop my wife from a crushing victory of 79 to 50. Hell, my game was so bad last night I think the Free City might have even beat me!

Check out this thread for an in depth analysis of balancing: http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/691370/some-complex-strategi...

The cards are more difficult to balance than the wonder boards.
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Steven Albano
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No, I wasn't saying that Ephesus was the worst wonder, I was saying that Side B was just much better than Side A.
 
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M. B. Downey
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Side B on the Pyramids gets you 5 extra points AND allows you to deny another card to someone without having to discard for money. Side B is better.

I think almost all of the side B Wonders are better than their side A counterparts.
 
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Steven Albano
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But Side B of Giza forces you to build all 4 stages to be better than the first. Sometimes that just doesn't happen or doesn't work out. While it can more reliably get your more Wonder points, it is definitely less flexible.
 
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M. B. Downey
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You may think it's less flexible, but I still maintain that it, like almost all Side B Wonders, is better than Side A.

You yourself said it can more reliably get you more Wonder points. Sounds better to me. What's your definition of "better"?
 
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Steven Albano
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Well, Side B can reliably get more VP than all other Wonders, that doesn't make it better than all of them.

It is more resource and card heavy to get those points. Side B requires that you dedicate the early game getting those resources while Side A is a lot more flexible.
 
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Steven Albano
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Well, let's have a quick comparison of all the different sides of the Wonders.

And remember, my main complaint about Ephesos is that side B is better through the first two stages and the costs to build the stages are identical. Ephesos is still even better at the end of the 3rd stage and doesn't even have a necessarily harder cost. If Ephesos B had a much more difficult stage 3, then I wouldn't be having this problem. It's just how similar the first two stages are that bothers me.

Gizah
First, side B requires you to not be as flexible in the number of cards you devote to getting Wonder slots. If you put a third card down for a stage, you must complete the fourth stage otherwise side A would have been better.
Second, the resources for side B are incredibly more difficult to get and require much more effort. It's four different resources (not including quantity) while side A only needs wood and stone.

Olympia
The sides have vastly different strategies. I don't think you can necessarily compare them.

Alexandria
Different costs of the stages.

Babylon
Side B allows you to be more flexible in that you don't need to build the 3rd stage to get Science. The A side somewhat pushes in that direction. However, the costs of the stages are different on both.

...

>>

So... I'm tired and was going to go through them all, but I don't feel like I can or need to go through them all. This is mainly because all the others boards seem to have different varying costs so that makes no side necessarily better than the other. Because Ephesos is exact for the first two stages, we can compare on every little detail and just see that B is better.
 
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