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Subject: 2p? rss

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Richard Ham
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So one person, as of today, has voted for the game's player count playability and stated that it's good with 3, 4 and 5. SOOOO, would said person feel like stepping forward to advise why he (or she) doesn't believe it's a good 2p game? Thanks!
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Barry Hood
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Seconded. I've pledged to grab an early bird but if I don't/can't find out more about how this plays two-player I may have to drop out before the end, since that's the majority of my game time and I have an abundance of games waiting to fill the times when there are more players. I'm basically looking for a way to justify this purchase to myself, other than I like the theme and designer
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TS S. Fulk
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I'm printing out a PnP version of the game this weekend. I'll probably play 3 players (if my middle son wants to play an "ugly" prototype) but can try some 2-player games with my oldest son.

You guys can do the same if you are crafts/PnP inclined.
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Alex Katsoufis
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My guess would be that the 2 player option didn't get the vote cause the game (kinda) loses the secret identity aspect wich I guess makes the game more fun.
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Christoph M.
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I played the pnp version with just two, and will play again. While it's fun, it's not great - while secret identity is ok, the bidding mechanic is not made for two players. As is usually the case with bidding.
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Craig Groff-Folsom
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Piscatella wrote:
My guess would be that the 2 player option didn't get the vote cause the game (kinda) loses the secret identity aspect wich I guess makes the game more fun.


How so? Even if both players are on the same side, the one in last place could switch gears and play for the shared loss (essentially a tie) instead of losing by supporting the other side. Or am I misunderstanding how the War/Revolution mechanic works with 2p?
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Martin Wallace
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If both players are on the same side then moving either marker up the war/revolution track is a wasted action, which is why you would not want to do this until you were sure the other guy is not on the same side.

The game is still being polished, but with the emphasis on 3+ players. 2 players is always a special case. I would accept that the game at the moment is not as good as the 3+ game. However, I'm hoping to take some time soon to work on rules just for 2 players, just to see what can be done to improve the experience. One idea that comes to mind is giving players game cards to start with, choosing five from a possible ten. A case of watch this space.

Martin
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Tomas Inguanzo
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Frog1 wrote:
If both players are on the same side then moving either marker up the war/revolution track is a wasted action, which is why you would not want to do this until you were sure the other guy is not on the same side.

--Or if you were ahead on points and only needed a few more to end the game.

Also, if your opponent is loyalist his player agent can't die or go mad. Secret factions also affect the use of the double agent tokens for Holmes and Moriarty.
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Manuel Ingeland
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Any further opinions here?
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Matthew Porosky
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Any more on this? My wife and I have played it four times. The first couple were learning the rules games but for the next two we knew the rules well. It just wasn't that fun for two. We really want to like this game (the theme is fantastic). If Mr. Wallace could post a 2 player variant I'd be up for it but as of now it is moving towards my resale pile.
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I love the game but can't imagine it being any good with less than three. So far We have played with either four or five players and it is great. In fact, the game length stays fairly tight with more players instead of drawing out and being too long like many other games (see Mage Knight).

Is there any way you and your wife can get enough play with other people to make it worth while? You could always move to Alameda, CA and play couples with my wife and I!
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Matthew Porosky
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Well, you have convinced me to keep it for the time being Tokhuah! I wish I could move to the Alameda sunshine! Sounds fun. If you ever find yourself in Seattle we can try a game of ASIE at one of our board game cafes. The Seattle grey/drizzle is starting to wear me down but the city's Superbowl excitement is definitely making things interesting. I'll update when I get a chance to play with more players. Cheers!
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that Matt
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Well, I see from rahdo's final thoughts that he concluded "this game just does not work as a two-player game."

I can't resist a prod on the thread, though. Any more thoughts on this game with two players? I'm not seeing much in the variants section, and I'm assuming from the blank space here that no official modifications have been revealed...
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Richard Ham
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tumorous wrote:
Well, I see from rahdo's final thoughts that he concluded "this game just does not work as a two-player game."

I can't resist a prod on the thread, though. Any more thoughts on this game with two players? I'm not seeing much in the variants section, and I'm assuming from the blank space here that no official modifications have been revealed...


I should say, doesn't work for us, because we don't like the sort of back & forth area control contests you see in games like Twilight Struggle. If that's your cup of tea though, maybe it'll still work?
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that Matt
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rahdo wrote:
I should say, doesn't work for us, because we don't like the sort of back & forth area control contests you see in games like Twilight Struggle. If that's your cup of tea though, maybe it'll still work?

Sadly, my wife and I have found that very issue rubbing us the wrong way in games such as Discworld: Ankh-Morpork. I've avoided games that appear to have the same tendency, but A Study in Emerald just looks so damn interesting...

(Not to get too far off topic here, but Hobbes made a thoughtful blog post on the two-player tug-of-war issue with a great analogy: "Aside from excessive 'cutthroatiness,' two-player tit-for-tat can be just plain boring. When I move, you make a countering move, which I counter, which you counter. It's like trying to beat your partner in a three-legged race.")
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Richard Ham
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tumorous wrote:
rahdo wrote:
I should say, doesn't work for us, because we don't like the sort of back & forth area control contests you see in games like Twilight Struggle. If that's your cup of tea though, maybe it'll still work?

Sadly, my wife and I have found that very issue rubbing us the wrong way in games such as Discworld: Ankh-Morpork. I've avoided games that appear to have the same tendency, but A Study in Emerald just looks so damn interesting...

(Not to get too far off topic here, but Hobbes made a thoughtful blog post on the two-player tug-of-war issue with a great analogy: "Aside from excessive 'cutthroatiness,' two-player tit-for-tat can be just plain boring. When I move, you make a countering move, which I counter, which you counter. It's like trying to beat your partner in a three-legged race.")


Oooh, I like that! Yeah, I can't imagine how Twilight Struggle is the top rated game on BGG... just mind boggling to me. It takes a special approach to area control to work really well with 2p. Battle for Souls is one that comes to mind
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Lawcomic
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This is not a two player game. I'd argue it doesn't really start to shine until you hit 4.
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Sam Carroll
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rahdo wrote:
Oooh, I like that! Yeah, I can't imagine how Twilight Struggle is the top rated game on BGG... just mind boggling to me. It takes a special approach to area control to work really well with 2p. Battle for Souls is one that comes to mind


I find that TS does work well in that regard. The multiple uses for Ops mean that there are ways to shut your opponent completely out of an area (via coups or realignments), or more frequently to make it too expensive for your opponent to compete in. Then the events on the cards can lead to nasty surprises - or less frequently, pleasant suprises when your event gets played by your opponent. The way scoring works (with scoring cards coming up in the draw, so only one player will know that, say, South America will score this turn) leads to some bluffing and doublethink.

In short, it's far from the move-countermove-countercountermove that's suggested above.
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Rick Collins
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I'd be keen to see a two player variant. It's been beyond a year since Martin's last comment on it. It would be great to hear if there has been any more consideration of what might make for better 2 player variants.
 
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Richard Descarreaux
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What happens with the 2 players variant to Martin Wallace? Someone news???
 
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Rauli Kettunen
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Haven't had any issues with 2-player, hell, preferred 2-p to the couple of 3-p. With 2, it's full PvP from start to finish, you're trying to outinfluence, outblock, outkill the other guy, or just running up the X Track faster than him, even if you're on the same side, if you have more Track-movers than he does, you have more control over when the game ends. Plus, takes less than 60 minutes to play, more like 45 min or under.
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birchbeer
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rickdcollins wrote:
I'd be keen to see a two player variant. It's been beyond a year since Martin's last comment on it. It would be great to hear if there has been any more consideration of what might make for better 2 player variants.


ive been working on a 2-player variant that uses a pretty crafty 'dummy player'. I'm writing up the rules now and also working on PnP version. I should have rules posted in files section soon, but waiting on artwork to get cards made for some of the other mini-expansions I'm working on.

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birchbeer
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Just uploaded my new 2-player variant for ASiE--Agent Sunday--in the files section.

Rahdo gave ASiE high marks in his review, but found the 2-player variant offered in the rules a bit underwhelming since the faction elimination mechanic was basically null and it turned into an I-take-this-you-take-it-back Ping Pong match.

This variant resolves that.

Please give it a go. Hope Richard can find some time to dig up his box and try it out with Jen.

P.S.
I think this might even work well with three players, so if someone wants to try it out I'd be interested in feedback on that as well.
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Thomas
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bamonson wrote:
Just uploaded my new 2-player variant for ASiE--Agent Sunday--in the files section.

Rahdo gave ASiE high marks in his review, but found the 2-player variant offered in the rules a bit underwhelming since the faction elimination mechanic was basically null and it turned into an I-take-this-you-take-it-back Ping Pong match.

This variant resolves that.

Please give it a go. Hope Richard can find some time to dig up his box and try it out with Jen.

P.S.
I think this might even work well with three players, so if someone wants to try it out I'd be interested in feedback on that as well.


Was there ever any "official" variants or tweaks to the game? Has anyone else tested this new fan variant?
 
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that Matt
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LunarSoundDesign wrote:
Was there ever any "official" variants or tweaks to the game?

Nope.
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