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Reef Encounter» Forums » General

Subject: Open Scoring and 2P feedback rss

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jbrier
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I think open scoring makes a lot of sense. Most of my games are online on SpielByWeb and I use the notepad feature there to keep track of who has eaten what.
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Jeff Huter
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I've played a fair number of games at spielbyweb.com and like John I use the notepad feature to track what's been eaten. With that said, you don't have 100% knowledge at spielbyweb because you don't know what tile the other player's dropped in their parrotfish during setup.

I like this small amount of unknown information. Basically, your opponents have between 1 to 5 more VP than shown. Personally, I think this helps reduce AP and provides a nice risk/reward decision point (e.g., if I trigger game end now, I win unless John dropped a pink tile in his fish during setup). A 1 to 5 point swing may not seem like much, but I've had to consider this numerous times in competitive games at spielbyweb.

As for the advanced game, I've not played it much. But, based on my limited experience, it seemed to needlessly lengthen the game. Not a big deal for online play, but I'd likely pass for face to face play since the game tends to go a bit long with my group as it is.
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J C Lawrence
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I play open.
 
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Tony Bosca
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Eternity, said Frankie Lee with a voice as cold as ice; That's right, said Judas Priest, eternity, though you might call it paradise...
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We play 2P with closed scoring... I have a fairly easy time keeping track of my opponents' score, but as mentioned in other replies, you don't know the "setup meal".

One little problem, I guess you could call it a problem, is that in some 2P (prolly due to a little luck in the early lots and the initial draw, some games seem to race out. If anything, in 2P games that go this way, the 2nd player is at an advantage- given the extra tiles they start with.

...I think the expansion helps this last part a little bit.

Reef Encounter of the Second Kind
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Maarten D. de Jong
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ldsdbomber wrote:
Do most people prefer to throw tiles into the parrotfish or keep that information open, in general I'm finding more and more that open information makes for a better game, especially ones that require a decent investment in brain tissue.

I play closed, mostly; but if people want to play open I have no objections against it. I would keep the 'temporary nourishment' of the parrotfish a secret, though: this means you have to stretch yourself in order to be sure to beat an opponent. This approach works quite well in other games where such a small amount of uncertainty is present (Louis XIV, Jaipur).

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I've started mocking up some boards that use the games art (Z man to match mine) so that you can use wooden bits to update the strength of each polyp colour whenever a coral strength tile is flipped, and am toying between simply stacking eaten tiles by that board, or including a separate track that I can move wooden pieces along or into to show how many of each colour a player has so it becomes a realtime tracker of the score situation.

I think that your tinkering needs a plugged approach. You still need to perform the arithmetic of multiplying tile value with amount of tiles ingested, and since I already dislike the calculations near the end I would consider the mental update process everytime someone flips several coral strength tiles, or eats a coral, to be too much of a good thing. Regrettably Reef Encounter isn't as transparent as other titles in this regard. You could see it as a heuristic skill you can perfect by practising.

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Also, the 2P game, between equally matched players, and particular equally matched players who get beyond the noob stage, does the random distribution of the open sea tile batches become a problem in terms of deciding which player gets the upper hand? Just curious about that one....

Not in my experience. There is the occasional 'must have' selection, when a lot of 3 equal coloured polyps and a larva cube of a colour you desperately need appears. But this doesn't happen all that often, and there are occasions when people will grab just 2 polyp tiles because of a better overlap of cube and tiles, so I'm inclined to say that within reason things seem to work out. If it bothers you, you could always instate a house rule that 3 polyps should always come in 2 colours, although this will of course mean that what is on offer becomes samey in variation.
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