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A Few Acres of Snow» Forums » General

Subject: Twilight Struggle or A few acres of snow ? rss

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Mattias B
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I'm considering buying one of these games, which one would you recommend and what sets them apart in complexity etc? I realize A few acres is a deck building game.
 
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Thomas Büttner-Zimmermann
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Buy Twilight Struggle.
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Romain Jacques
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Difficult question, I am sorry I am not able to answer. I am glad I have both.
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Jean Gagnier
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sylvestris wrote:
I'm considering buying one of these games, which one would you recommend and what sets them apart in complexity etc? I realize A few acres is a deck building game.


If that's the extent of your knowledge about the games, you should probably do a bit more research rather than rely on people's opinions.

Both are about the same level of complexity. I enjoy both, but you didn't give us much information on which to base a recommendation.

My opinion? The tactical decisions in Twilight Struggle make it one of my favourite games ever, but A Few Acres of Snow relies much more on a long-term strategy. You know exactly what will come up in your deck for the rest of the game (but not the order) whereas in Twilight Struggle the odds of getting a particular card are around 50%, and you have no way to plan combinations before the start of a turn.
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Steve Ellis
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I own both and cannot imagine ever regretting it :)
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Martin Smith
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Try AFAOS on Yucata.de - it's a great little implementation and will let you see if you like the game.
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Bartow Riggs
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I think both games are great but if you are a fan of theme (in addition to strategy) and especially if you are a bit older and lived through some of the events in TS....I'd go with Twilight Struggle if I was going to get only one.
 
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Thomas P. Felder
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Just to swing the tide, I'd go for A Few Acres of Snow. I think it's much easier to grasp, it's far more beautiful and, last but not least, less expensive! :-)
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Clyde W
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I also own both and would say Twilight Struggle without a doubt. TS is more theme-rich, for certain, and while the USSR side is certainly easier to play, it's much different from the broken condition of A Few Acres, where the Brits when every game once the "broken" strategy is known.

There's little reason to reward sloppy game development, so go TS all the way!
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Christopher O
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Summer grasses / All that remains / Of soldiers' dreams. - Basho.
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Much different games, so the choice is really quite subjective.

Ask yourself the following 10 questions:

1. Is the mechanic of "deckbuilding" important to you in the game you buy?

a) No
b) Yes

2. When it comes to evoking historical events, which is more important?

a) It should evoke historical events in more detail at the expense of longer rules or playtime.
b) Less complex rules and shorter playtime should be more important than evoking historical events.

3 Do you prefer shorter, less complicated games?

a) No
b) Yes

4. Does your most likely opponent prefer shorter, less complicated games?

a) No
b) Yes

5. Which era are you more interested in?

a) 1945-1989 Cold War
b) 1680-1759 Colonial North America

6. How many times are you likely to play this game in a 1-2 year period?

a) Roughly 10 times or more.
b) Less than 10 times

7. Are you very interested in playing other CDG systems (Washington's War, For The People, Empire of the Sun)?

a) Yes
b) No

8. Do you prefer the evocation of direct conflict more, or do you prefer evocation of diplomacy and influence?

a) Diplomacy and influence.
b) Direct conflict

9. Would the idea that there is a strategy that, once known and correctly executed, gives an edge to the side that uses it bother you a lot, or would you be happy to play something that was still engaging between people learning the game together?

a) Yes, known strong strategies would bother me.
b) No, as long as the game is generally fun, that's no problem.

10. Does the idea of a good part of success revolving around successfully remembering what a specific card can do at a specific time and under what conditions seem daunting, or would you prefer not to have to use memorizing specific card effects and combinations be an important part of strategy?

a) I wouldn't mind focusing a lot of attention of memorizing cards and combinations.
b) I'd rather not worry about knowing the exact contents of a deck and concentrate more on adapting my own deck to the situation.

Tally up your answers. If you answered a) more often, you're probably more likely to get more out of Twilight Struggle. If b), then you should look at A Few Acres of Snow.

I like both games. I think Twilight Struggle is a better designed game overall, but for a number of reasons, including those covered above, I'd rather play A Few Acres of Snow under most circumstances; that's my preference, your mileage may vary.

(I'd actually play Labyrinth over either, but that's another thread)

Looking at the OP's game collection and the types of games in it, I would recommend AFAoS, unless the OP's intent was to eventually invest more time in learning more complex consims.
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Jean Gagnier
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BartowWing wrote:
but if you are a fan of theme (in addition to strategy) (...)


I think both games are pretty true to their theme, but even if I personally prefer TS, I'd give an edge to AFAOS on theme. TS shines as well, but I feel like there are more gamey elements in TS (such as discarding a card through the space race, or the headline phase) that are absent from AFAOS.
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Mike Willner
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Have to admit, this is the oddest comparison, intriguing!

Risking the eire of my colleagues:

I like A Few Acres, and play it frequently to fill in the odd 45 - 60 minutes at our game club ( www.nycwargames.com ). It is broken, and you have to make an effort to ignore the various auto-win strategies that have emerged. So, the fact that deck engineers who calculate and optimize the fun out of everything have broken this game puts it a notch lower on the scale for me.

Twilight is a gas, especially since at the age of 57 most if not all the events cited are in my living memory. No two games played the same, it is easy to learn and I never mind losing or winning. I'm sure the deck engineers could suck all the fun out of this one too, but I've not bothered to read the posts or follow any of the 'expert' commentary. So to me, this game is still a wide open, challenging, surprising fun experience.

My pick: Twilight.
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Mike Brewer
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TS is a much richer experience. But the game will take longer to play (90-180 mins).

AFAOS is quicker to play (30-60 mins?) and a novel design, but not a great game experience if the British player goes all out for a win using the dominant strategy.

I own both and am now trading away AFAOS.

 
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Mr. Blue
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Or go a third direction: 1960: The Making of the President. Great game, that one.
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Russell Grey
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I wonder what the OP decided upon.

I own both, but I find A Few Acres of Snow gets to the table more frequently. Mostly because my wife prefers playing this over Twilight Struggle.
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Frank Reynolds
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I approached this as which one would I most miss if I could only keep one of them, and it came down to TS. Simply more engaging and narrative in its gameplay.

So go with Twilight Struggle first. But when you want to get a game after TS, get AFAoS as you deserve to have both games in your collection.

 
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Francois-Xavier
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I don't own TS but AfAoS is a great game and probably one of my favourites. Ignore all the stuff about the broken strategy and just play it until you figure out the auto win strategy by yourself. Then you can go to the forums to try and find a fix. I do really love the theme and I like the French vs English speaker conflict, a bit like we have at home (the mrs is English and I'm a French speaker)
 
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