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Subject: Quick-play / Newbie-friendly Variant rss

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Twinge
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I played this at BGG CON, and for inexperienced players a full game seemed to take far too long - 45 minutes doesn't feel at all right for a game of this nature. So a few of us playing changed the scoring to make it a 15-minute game instead.

1) If you knock your ball off the board, place the ball back in the square it came from and end your turn. Knocking a ball into a square in one of the columns on your far left or right (other players' starting area) is the same as knocking it off the board.

2) Getting a ball across the board to the starting area across from you is worth 4 points. (If you land on an enemy ball, they move it to another starting square (empty if possible); you can never capture a piece in a starting row.)

3) Capturing an enemy piece is worth 2 points. There are no prisoner exchanges.

First player to 12 points wins. The player to the left of the winner begins the next game.
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Sean Gregory
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Good ideas.

The rules always seemed a bit poor for this attractive game.

New players often knock all their balls off the table too soon, too, so good idea to offer a 2nd chance.
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Hilko Drude
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What are you doing!? I don't even know you!
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I might be playing something wrong (haven't read the rules in ages), but even with newbies, this never takes remotely close to 45 minutes? Actually, marbles that are knocked off the board shorten the playtime in my opinion (and it does happen to me, of course, even though I have played it quite a bit).
 
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Twinge
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HilkMAN wrote:
I might be playing something wrong (haven't read the rules in ages), but even with newbies, this never takes remotely close to 45 minutes? Actually, marbles that are knocked off the board shorten the playtime in my opinion (and it does happen to me, of course, even though I have played it quite a bit).


Sounds correct - the printed rules at BGG Con officially said balls knocked off were removed from the game, but someone had written in that they go back so that's how we played the first time. Putting them back AND trying to go for a full game (until a player can't move anymore) runs far too long.
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1 Lucky Texan
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Any suggestions on how to use the black ball?
 
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Sean Gregory
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I play the black ball just as it says in the rules: You can play that ball on your turn instead of one of yours. If you hit the black ball into a spot with another ball it is removed from the table. If the black ball (we call it the Death Star)is hit off the table it is put back into one of the four center spots.

I like the black ball. It is a feared object on the table. Also, when someone is out of balls to hit, they get plenty of fun just playing the ball on their turn. They could be protecting their lead or just playing "king maker".

This game suffers from its poor rules, and they have needed plenty of modification at our house. But the game is still here and we just played it last week!

Good luck.
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1 Lucky Texan
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sgregory wrote:
I play the black ball just as it says in the rules: You can play that ball on your turn instead of one of yours. If you hit the black ball into a spot with another ball it is removed from the table. If the black ball (we call it the Death Star)is hit off the table it is put back into one of the four center spots.

I like the black ball. It is a feared object on the table. Also, when someone is out of balls to hit, they get plenty of fun just playing the ball on their turn. They could be protecting their lead or just playing "king maker".

This game suffers from its poor rules, and they have needed plenty of modification at our house. But the game is still here and we just played it last week!

Good luck.


yeah, I hauled it up to my FLGS last game night and folks had a lot of silly laughs with it.

thanx for replying!
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