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Subject: Why 99% does not recommend it for 4 players? rss

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Lawrence Hung
Hong Kong
Wan Chai
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We have a group of 4 players thinking to get into something great, kind of wargame, kind of joy together for the feast of Christmas. This game comes up to our mind. When I check the poll of the no. of people suitable for this game, I am surprised to see it is not really meant to be a game for 4 players but 3 at best. It is even a game for 2 much better than a 4 players game. Curious mind wants to know why. Can someone share his or her experience with us?
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Bartosz Rzepka
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99% not recomand it for MORE than 4 players. For 4 players there's only 56% who not recomands it.
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Jason Rupp
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It's because the downtime is huge with 4 players. First off, the game will probably take 5 hours but also there's a lot of time before your next turn.
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Guido Gloor
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There's one sole reason for the game being worse with 4 than with 3, 2 or even 1 (even for those who prefer multiple players to one): Game length. When you have to wait for three other players (and their turns aren't incredibly interactive for the other players), the game goes rather long - its length scales linearly with the number of players, and you're looking at anywhere from 4 to 6-7 hours for a full game with four.

You misread the poll though - 99% do mark it as "not recommended" for more than 4 players. For 4 players, it's "only" 55.6% that don't recommend it. Still the majority, but I would've been really surprised about 99% for four
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Chris Casinghino
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In one word: downtime! This is a very long game even when played solo. Turns often take 5 minutes or more. With 4 players, you are looking at a 6+ hour game, most of which you'll spend waiting.

I have a few friends who don't mind 4-player. But if you decide to try it that way, make sure everyone has played a few times first. With 4 new players it could easily be a 10-hour slog.
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Christopher Dodge
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Lawrence Hung wrote:
We have a group of 4 players thinking to get into something great, kind of wargame, kind of joy together for the feast of Christmas. This game comes up to our mind. When I check the poll of the no. of people suitable for this game, I am surprised to see it is not really meant to be a game for 4 players but 3 at best. It is even a game for 2 much better than a 4 players game. Curious mind wants to know why. Can someone share his or her experience with us?


I don't have the game yet (getting it for Christmas) but I have been reading all of the posts here. My understanding is that each player's turn takes so long that, if there are four players, the wait for your next turn is too long.
 
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Jason Rupp
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If anyone is listening, this would be a perfect async game for iOS :D I'd be willing to play 4 player then.
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Ernest S
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I taught 3 new players and it took us 5 hours from box open to finish. It was still a blast and time went by very quickly.

As others have said, downtime between turns is the biggest drawback. Each player must puzzle out their turn and it's difficult to do so before your turn as things (board, available cards, available mana, etc) change constantly.

Although I would prefer fewer players and solo, I would still play a 4-player game because this game is so awesome.
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Georg D.
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Lawrence Hung wrote:
We have a group of 4 players thinking to get into something great, kind of wargame,

I wouldn't call Mage Knight a kind of wargame. Although there are rules for PvP it doesn't happen very often and although you shouldn't ignore what your opponents do you don't have to adapt your play that strongly as you do in most wargames.
 
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Eric Lai
Hong Kong
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It's definitely NOT a wargame Lawrence, its horrible with 4, like many above has mentioned, I've played it solo and two players and between you and me it was the same fun solo and with two players. So don't bother.

4 players in Hong Kong? Play Mahjong

How about Lords of the Sierra Madre (second edition), it was the last 4 player game I played and it was a lot of fun. Sword of Rome, Successors (third edition), The Republic of Rome are all better choices.

Hey! Count me in and I will give you some 5 player options!
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Daniel Nedeljkovic
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The game is quite unbalanced with 3, let alone 4. The 3rd, and, especially, the 4th player are left with little to nothing meaningful to do because the 1st and the 2nd player will get the best stuff.
 
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Lawrence Hung
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Wan Chai
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Garfink wrote:
It's definitely NOT a wargame Lawrence, its horrible with 4, like many above has mentioned, I've played it solo and two players and between you and me it was the same fun solo and with two players. So don't bother.

4 players in Hong Kong? Play Mahjong

How about Lords of the Sierra Madre (second edition), it was the last 4 player game I played and it was a lot of fun. Sword of Rome, Successors (third edition), The Republic of Rome are all better choices.

Hey! Count me in and I will give you some 5 player options!


Well, I guess we cannot play Mahjong in a club of wargaming.....downtime shouldn't be an issue for us, especially we are all newcomers to the game. I don't have Lords of the Sierra Madre (second edition), and I don't care about the subject. Sword of Rome would be a good choice 'cos I haven't played it for quite some time. The game is in the warehouse though. It takes me time to retrieve it back. We have played Successors (third edition) on many occasions already and so we don't want to play it again so soon with Alexander's body at hand. The Republic of Rome would be too complex, too long for the group. It is really an excellent game though. I have considered Onward, Christian Soldiers too but people seem not to be interested in crusaders thing.

Yep, I read the poll wrong. If the game sounds good, even though it is not a wargame, the group would still be interested in. 6 hours seems about right for an afternoon session too.

 
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♫ Eric Herman ♫
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Those polls can be very inadequate...

For example, with 4 players who know the game well (or can learn well enough), who like involved deterministic games, who don't mind some time between their turns to think about their next move and observe what everyone else is doing, and have several hours to play... MK is highly recommended. Heck, even 5 players under those circumstances.
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♫ Eric Herman ♫
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Floating World wrote:
The game is quite unbalanced with 3, let alone 4. The 3rd, and, especially, the 4th player are left with little to nothing meaningful to do because the 1st and the 2nd player will get the best stuff.


I don't think that's true at all. For one thing, you choose the tactics and turn order each time. And though on the very first turn there may be some advantage for the player going first to be able to kill the nearest marauding orc to gain a little fame, in the long term there are meaningful options and choices for each player that make much more of a difference than the initial turn order.
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james napoli
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I would not play this with 4 players.

There can be a lot of downtime between turns and it can be a fairly solitaire game experience.

This game requires a high level of commitment not only for the owner/teacher but for all those involved.

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James
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Digger Cook
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This game is long. But, it's also awesome. Fewer players is better, but if all of you know what you are getting into and have the time, I say go for it.
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Bill Stivers
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I love this game with others! I would play it with 4 anytime. If you enjoy playing with your group then this will be a hit too. In fact I only play this game solo to learn the game better.
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Daniel Corban
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I think the complaints of length stem mainly from so many new players. Someone who learns and plays the game at the local game store will undoubtedly come home six hours later wondering why anyone would play the game with four players. With at least one very experienced player at the table keeping people moving and immediately answering questions, as opposed to digging through the rulebook, the game is a little over an hour per player if people are slow.

With veterans at the table, the game can be very quick. I played a two player game with both of us knowing the game perfectly, and it was complete in less than two hours. I played a game with two other first-timers, and it was around three hours. You just need a "guru" at the table to answer questions. If find your group reaching for the rulebook more than once in a game, you are going to slow the game down. Everything you need to know should be immediately accessible via someone's brain and reference cards.

All my times mentioned are for the full conquest game with no PVP. With PVP, the game will be shortened significantly, as players will tend to end the round one turn earlier than without PVP. This is because it is bad to have an empty hand of cards when someone may attack you.
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Nathan Hortness
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I own this game.
I love this game.
I doubt I will ever play anything but solo.
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Daniel Corban
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ND3G wrote:
I own this game.
I love this game.
I doubt I will ever play anything but solo.

That's a shame since we are in driving distance of each other.
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Ryken C

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ND3G wrote:
I own this game.
I love this game.
I doubt I will ever play anything but solo.


I am in this camp. I tried a two player game with my brother, and it just wasn't as much fun. I'd maybe try a 2-3 player game with people who had played it at least 5-6 times already, but that's it.
 
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Ryan McLelland
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I have played solo, with 2, and with 4 (2 total newbies). The game is long, but its still fun. With experienced players 4 would be totally fine. I would recommend teaching the game in smaller groups, but if people are okay with a longer game, and aren't terribly prone to AP then it works fine with 4.
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Gian Le
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I just bought a copy of the original + the expansion and will be looking to start playing with 5 people.

From what i've read, 5 players seems to be a big no no?

We play a lot of Resident Evil DBG and countless hours of Heroscape so im sure it won't be too bad...right?
 
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Hubert AMG
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Sorry for this sophisticated comparison, but isn't Monopoly (together with Talisman and tons of other games) having similar downtime with multiple players
And these are still very popular
 
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Guido Gloor
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Giangsta wrote:
From what i've read, 5 players seems to be a big no no?

Start with 2 or 3 players, with the intro scenario or a Blitz Conquest. That'll take 3-5 hours easily, the first game at least.

When everybody knows the rules and can handle themselves without asking you whether a keep's occupants are revealed or not on day or night when somebody is standing next to it, then you can judge for yourself whether 5 players will work with your group.

Definitely don't start with 5 players at first. It's not only the total playing time that will be annoying, but also each individual player's downtime.
 
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