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Subject: A Little Strategy Tip rss

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Ben Stanley
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I enjoy this game more the more I play it, and my family cannot get enough of it. They always want to play.

At first I won about as much as one would expect: the statistical average based on player count. So I assumed that it felt like there was some meaningful choice on some turns, but that choice was pretty obvious and luck was strong enough that it didn't matter too much.

But I recently changed my approach with the guards: I had been guessing based on what had the most left in the unseen cards (to maximize probabilistic likelihood) if I didn't have a good sense of what others were holding. The last dozen games or so, I have been far more likely to guess for the very card I held in my own hand, one that was quite unlikely (if not impossible) to get one of my opponents out of the game, but extremely effective at giving them the wrong impression about my hand, which was actually far more beneficial.

It's hilarious to guess your opponent has the princess (when actually you do), have them say no, then use a baron to compare against you because they are holding the countess, only to lose!

I have been on an unbroken winning streak my last dozen games . . .
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Russ Williams
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Blue Steel wrote:
The last dozen games or so, I have been far more likely to guess for the very card I held in my own hand

Shhh! Don't tell your family!
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Deb Wentworth
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I used to use that strategy playing Clue as a kid - you're right, every effective in throwing them off the trail!
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Antonio Tang
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Thanks for this amazing tip. Keep 'em coming!
 
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Dezza
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Other bluffing strategies I can think of are throwing out the countess when you don't have the king/prince and holding cards in such a way to make people think you have the princess (or a high card), either by making it 'obvious' that you're not discarding that card (eg. always in the left hand), or by constantly mixing your cards around.
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Game Guy
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Blue Steel wrote:
I enjoy this game more the more I play it, and my family cannot get enough of it. They always want to play.

At first I won about as much as one would expect: the statistical average based on player count. So I assumed that it felt like there was some meaningful choice on some turns, but that choice was pretty obvious and luck was strong enough that it didn't matter too much.

But I recently changed my approach with the guards: I had been guessing based on what had the most left in the unseen cards (to maximize probabilistic likelihood) if I didn't have a good sense of what others were holding. The last dozen games or so, I have been far more likely to guess for the very card I held in my own hand, one that was quite unlikely (if not impossible) to get one of my opponents out of the game, but extremely effective at giving them the wrong impression about my hand, which was actually far more beneficial.

It's hilarious to guess your opponent has the princess (when actually you do), have them say no, then use a baron to compare against you because they are holding the countess, only to lose!

I have been on an unbroken winning streak my last dozen games . . .


Clever. The only downside is if the the Countess "Barons" you, any remaining players know you have the Princess.
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Andrew Tuepah
Canada
Prince George
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Do other players see your card if you Baron? Secretly to me says just between the carded players?
 
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Shane Is Board
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Also try holding onto a guard till late in the round if you can; can be surprisingly effective.
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Edward Bolme
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tuepak wrote:
Do other players see your card if you Baron? Secretly to me says just between the carded players?


Just the players involved.
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Tables
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tuepak wrote:
Do other players see your card if you Baron? Secretly to me says just between the carded players?


No, but once you compare, if someone discards the Countess and says "I lost", well... what could the other person possibly be holding whistle?
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D.M. Jones
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...before I forget.
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Yeah, holding a guard till late (when you have more info) is a great tactic. Also means you are imune to guard attacks.

The Baron seems to be the big concern when you are trying to use the 'hold a guard' tactic. If someone else plays the baron against you, you are in trouble! And if you pick it up you are forced to abandon the tactic. But when it works, and you can use a guard late in the round...you often have things narrowed down.

Still, love the tactic and it should be a tool in every player's arsenal. Just don't use it all the time.
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James Douglas
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I have been thinking of another theory with the completely wild guesses.
Princess-Guard combo
You are usually better off guessing a character that has doubles (Priest, Baron, Handmaiden or Prince). In this case you should probably never wildly guess the Baron because if the Baron is played against you you will win (probably a good reason not to guess Baron if you have the Countess either). You want to keep the Baron in the game. The Prince card played against you is a sure loss, so you should probably guess Prince in this case. A priest could also be a tough card against the princess because you are not likely to change cards so it is a good second choice guess.

Guard-Guard combo
This is the opposite of the Princess-Guard combo. A baron played against you will cause you to lose so guess the Baron for your own protection. A Prince and Priest have little effect as the guard is easily gotten rid of and it is not a big deal if it is discarded or known by others (Baron not included).

Not sure if any of this makes sense, but I just started playing this weekend and was thinking about different strategies during lunch. I thought I would share and see if it made sense to others. It may be common knowlegde, but we play the game so quickly that I doubt the others have put it all together. I think guessing the card you have is good sometimes, but my group would catch on if I always did it.
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Robert Stewart
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douglasiv wrote:
I have been thinking of another theory with the completely wild guesses.
Princess-Guard combo
You are usually better off guessing a character that has doubles (Priest, Baron, Handmaiden or Prince). In this case you should probably never wildly guess the Baron because if the Baron is played against you you will win (probably a good reason not to guess Baron if you have the Countess either). You want to keep the Baron in the game. The Prince card played against you is a sure loss, so you should probably guess Prince in this case. A priest could also be a tough card against the princess because you are not likely to change cards so it is a good second choice guess.

Guard-Guard combo
This is the opposite of the Princess-Guard combo. A baron played against you will cause you to lose so guess the Baron for your own protection. A Prince and Priest have little effect as the guard is easily gotten rid of and it is not a big deal if it is discarded or known by others (Baron not included).

Not sure if any of this makes sense, but I just started playing this weekend and was thinking about different strategies during lunch. I thought I would share and see if it made sense to others. It may be common knowlegde, but we play the game so quickly that I doubt the others have put it all together. I think guessing the card you have is good sometimes, but my group would catch on if I always did it.


If other players know that you base your guesses on what you have in your hand, that tells them more about what you have in your hand; if you ignore the other card in your hand, then you're more vulnerable to lucky guesses from the other players, but give them less to base those guesses on.

Early in the game, my Guards will usually look for a Prince (or the highest double-card that no-one's yet played). Later in the game, I'll take account of my other card.
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Edward Bolme
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Charlotte
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Handmaiden is our universal default target. Because we don't want people getting protected later in the game.
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Jan-Willem van Leeuwen
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douglasiv wrote:
The Prince card played against you is a sure loss, so you should probably guess Prince in this case.


Why is that so? You simply get a new card and play on; you don't lose when you have to discard the princess because of the prince, do you?
I looked it up, and the rules of the dutch version specifically say you don't lose in this case...
 
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Edward Bolme
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Then the Dutch translation is inaccurate.
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Jan-Willem van Leeuwen
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Strange. I've looked up an english version of the rules (not on BGG), and a dutch version (on BGG). The dutch rules on BGG are different from the ones that came with my copy.

They make an exception for the princess when she's discarded because of the prince: that player does lose.

However, this exception is not in the English rules, there it just says: "That player discards his or her hand (do not apply its effect) and draws a new card." which is what is in my Dutch version.

Apparently, the rules have been updated. Thematically, I guess the version where you lose is better.
 
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Bruce Murphy
Australia
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The AEG rules are... creative.

B>
 
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Edward Bolme
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The AEG rules also say that "if you discard the Princess--no matter how or why--she has tossed you letter into the fire. You are out of the round."

No exception made.
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Bruce Murphy
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edbolme wrote:
The AEG rules also say that "if you discard the Princess--no matter how or why--she has tossed you letter into the fire. You are out of the round."

No exception made.


The original rules explain the difference between passive and active powers and don't require the players to figure out which if the conflicting absolutes of Prince and Princess take precedence.

B>
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Ole Enes Ebbesen
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I resently played this game A LOT against my colleague during a work trip.
When doing that you get to really know our opponent, and I found it quite important (and fun) to change my tactics from time to time.

When going on a loosing streake, I turn from deduction to wild guesses (as it gives your opponent less information about your hand).
Sometimes I guess the card I have in my hand to throw him off, sometimes I guess what would kill me.

But beeing unpredictable in a bluffing game might not be so bad.
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Ole Enes Ebbesen
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And I guess I'm stating the obvious, but:

If you have the Princess, the Priest and the Prince are the dangerous cards, and you "should" guess them with your guards.

If you have two guards, the Baron is your enemy.

I tend to put that into the equation on what to choose when playing my guards.

Someone else here was saying that they guessed Handmaids the most, but for me Handmaids are what I guess the least, because they don't kill me.
And I also usually play the handmaid right away when I get one, just to survive as long as possible.
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Gavin Burchell
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Actually the handmaid can kill you. We recently had a game where there were three players left. Two players played the Handmaid, and on the third players turn he had prince and princess. he couldn't play the princess, so he played the prince, but with both Hamdmaids in play he could only target himself, forcing him to the discard the princess...game over!
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Brian P
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I think you can still target somebody with a handmaid, they just get to ignore the effect so generally you wouldn't want to.

I generally guess Handmaid if they haven't had a chance to play yet, and then never guess it since they'd probably have played it if they had it.
 
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Matheus Affonso
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Link774 wrote:
I think you can still target somebody with a handmaid, they just get to ignore the effect so generally you wouldn't want to.

I generally guess Handmaid if they haven't had a chance to play yet, and then never guess it since they'd probably have played it if they had it.

Not really. They can't be targeted. If you have a Prince and there are two players left, both with Handmaids out, you must target yourself.
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