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Subject: Best way to learn Agricola rss

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Prime Time
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My son really wants Agricola. I would really, really like to have him and I play it before we get it. There are not any options to play it locally with somebody else (I live in a pretty rural area). I know it can be played online, but how do we know how to play it before I jump online and try? Are there any good recommendations or helps? Thanks!
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Laura Creighton
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http://play-agricola.com/Agricola/Images/pages/rules.html

download the pdf and read. Ask questions about how the online version works in their own forums to discuss exactly that. For help with strategy: go here and post questions in the Agricola strategy forum http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/31260/agricola or on the play-agricola forums.
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Brian Schwartz
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I went on Youtube and watched a few video reviews. That really helped me. It was my first strategy game and when I unboxed it, I literally had no idea how to begin playing it!
 
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Johan Haglert
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The rules for the family game is very simple.

The rule book is well written and short (I wonder if the family rules wasn't an exception though? As in written as additional rules but it's really less rules.)

You can learn the game with no problems and then play it.
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Sean T
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There are two online play options on the Agricola page.

http://play-agricola.com/Agricola/Board1/Agricola.html
http://www.boiteajeux.net/

I have not played either, but it is worth checking out.
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Chris Ferejohn
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aliquis wrote:
The rules for the family game is very simple.

The rule book is well written and short (I wonder if the family rules wasn't an exception though? As in written as additional rules but it's really less rules.)

You can learn the game with no problems and then play it.


None of these things are true. Seriously. I have very smart friends who at least have some game experience who said that trying to learn Agricola from the rulebook was an experience so frustrating they still talk about it years later as the "worst date night ever".

If you can't find someone to teach you, watch the Scott Nicholson video, especially if you don't have a lot of experience learning games from the rulebook.

Definitely agree you should start with the family version.
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Harper Hobbs
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How I introduce it:

1) No Jobs Cards
2) No Minor Improvement Cards
3) Pay 1 food for "adult" at harvest / "baby" is 0 food

This method allows new users to get more workers to the fields earlier and allowing the user to begin learning to diversify. Having to worry too much about food at harvest can get in the way of a beginner learning. Once the point system is understood we will add in the Jobs and Improvements.

Then when it gets stale move on to the other decks.
 
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Josh Bodah
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I found the rules pretty intuitive (by comparison I had a harder time with Red November and still haven't played that game correctly). The Mayday meeples helped a lot. I tried playing it online first, but I never really got what I was doing.

Frankly I'd recommend just buying it. It really deserves to be where it is on the charts in my opinion, and I don't think it's that complex (I feel like I could easily teach the family version to my mom who has only played light card games like Lost Cities, Haggis, and Battle Line).

The only difference I might suggest is coming up with a variant where you aren't competing for actions in your first game (let each player take each action once during their turn) so they can learn how everything fits together

As far as the rulebook goes, it did the job. It's a little scatter brained, but the game makes a lot of sense after you've gone through a round or two.
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Fernando Robert Yu
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Once you have the physical copy you can also play a couple of games solitaire, so you can get a hang of the rules and gameplay first before teaching it. That was my approach and that helped me a lot in teaching the staff of my FLGS, who now love the game.
 
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John Heynes
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As previously mentioned, the Board Games With Scott video is one of the best ways to learn Agricola.
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The way I taught myself is what I think works best:

1) Pull up a PDF of the rules. Give em a read-through soyou at least have a gist of what is going on in the game.

2) Start a game on http://www.boiteajeux.net/ between just you and your son. Why that over play-agricola? Boiteajeux actually runs the game for you. So if you try to do an illegal move, it will just not allow it.

3) If you're not sure why the site didn't allow something, go back over to the rules, see if you can find where that rule is covered. If you can't find it there, just google it, you'll probably get a result linking to one of the agric forum posts here explaining the rule.

4) If/when the rule you were wrong on screws up the game, simply quit the game that's going and start over.

Go through that process a few times and you should both understand the game pretty well.
 
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Prime Time
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These are fantastic suggestions. I'm going to watch the video with Scott, read the rules, listen to "How to Play Podcast" of Agricola, then get on boiteajeux.net and play a few games with my son.

All this leads to another question:

How does the online version of the game compare to the 'feel' of playing the real game?
 
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Melissa
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My husband & I learned to play by watching a walkthrough/How to Play video. It made the game incredibly simple to learn for us. I can't remember the name of the video but the guy kept saying "...as such" a lot, so it shouldn't be too hard to find the right one

Once you get the basic game down (I'd recommend at least 5 plays), it's pretty easy to start complicating it for even more of a challenge.
 
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David
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aliquis wrote:
The rules for the family game is very simple.

The rule book is well written and short (I wonder if the family rules wasn't an exception though? As in written as additional rules but it's really less rules.)

You can learn the game with no problems and then play it.
Hahaha. Good one!

The Agricola rule book currently ranks as the worst rule book in my collection. It only beats the German Munchkin rule book through it's massive size and, well, because it's for a game I actually want to play...

Once you've learned the game I suggest you get a play under your belt as soon as possible. Maybe even a solo game (which is quite fun). And then make sure you don't shelf it for too long or you'll forget again.
 
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Richard S.
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We watched the same video

 
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David Buckley
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cferejohn wrote:
aliquis wrote:
The rules for the family game is very simple.

The rule book is well written and short (I wonder if the family rules wasn't an exception though? As in written as additional rules but it's really less rules.)

You can learn the game with no problems and then play it.


None of these things are true. Seriously. I have very smart friends who at least have some game experience who said that trying to learn Agricola from the rulebook was an experience so frustrating they still talk about it years later as the "worst date night ever".

If you can't find someone to teach you, watch the Scott Nicholson video, especially if you don't have a lot of experience learning games from the rulebook.

Definitely agree you should start with the family version.


From my memory of my first game of Agricola (full version). I didn't find it so simple to learn and that was with someone teaching me. I also recommend starting with the family version. Even then I would not describe the rules as "simple" let alone "very simple" and I'd be astonished to find anyone who would outside of gaming circles.
 
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J Holmes
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Shane Larsen
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Agricola is hard to learn from the rules.

Agricola is easy to learn from someone who already knows how to play it.

So just click on the link below and learn the way the rest of us did:

Board Games with Scott 051 - Agricola

P.S. Feel free to fast-forward through his _quirky_ intro (as many of his videos have).

...Or if you're ever in the Salt Lake area, I'd be happy to teach you.
 
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