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Subject: 1856 and 1870 rss

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Todd Jarvis
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OK, I'm extremely interested in these games. I have read everything that I have been able to track down about them. What I want is a complete rule set for each game. So far all I have found is a summary for 1830 and then an article the specifies the differences between 1830 and 1856 and 1830 vs 1870. Is there anywhere that I can get a copy of the rules for either of these games? Mostly 1856.
 
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Here you go:

http://thor.prohosting.com/~civilian/1856.en.htm
 
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Todd Jarvis
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Thank you!
 
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I'm looking at those same two games myself, and the gist that I'm getting is that 1870 is very long (8 hours or so), but more forgiving than 1856. 1856 is supposed to be tougher, but 2 or 3 hours shorter. I'm leaning towards 1856 myself.
 
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Todd Jarvis
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I have been leaning toward 1856 myself, but wanted more clearification. The rules have helped my decision alot. Your report of an 8 hour (give or take) would be a deal breaker. I can handle 4 hrs (after I get a handle on a game--more for the first few), but it sounds like 1870 would never hit the table.
The more toughness of the games doesn't really sway me other way, well maybe toward 1856.
Thanks again for the responses!
 
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J C Lawrence
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A lot depends on your group. I've known of groups that play 6 player 1870 in around 3 to 4 hours on a regular basis. I've also known groups that couldn't finish 1870 in less than 8 hours if you paid them. Other than that I agree with your general comparison of 1870 and 1856. 1870 is bigger slower and more gentle. 1856 is more a child of 1830: tighter, meaner, nastier.
 
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John Elbl
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I have played both 1856 and 1870. My preference of the two is 1856; but here is a rough summary:

Both games can be long... they are definitely in the 'heavy' category of gaming goodness. You are an investor that runs companies that you have heavily invested in. Your competitors are doing everything they can to twart you: hurting your train runs, trashing your stock, stipping a company of assests then dumping it on you, making your company's trains obsolete thereby forcing you to pay out of pocket... The game came be brutal, which adds to its enjoyment

1870 has some features such as stock protection, and a 'soft stock ledge' which makes stock market trashing not as harsh. Stock repurchase and connection runs are also associated with 1870. 1856 is a cash tight game. I have seen more bankruptcies with 1856 than any other 18xx game. The shortage of initial capital, low floating requirement, loans, and the borg -I mean- Great Canadian Railroad (which is formed from companies with outstanding loans) characterize 1856.

Both games can be long, but I have not felt one drag... However, I tend to enjoy heavy style games. I have started getting into 18xx during the past 8 or so months. Now, many Euros just don't appeal as much.

If time is a consideration, you may want to check out some 18xx 'kits' that are shorter, such as 18AL, 18GA or 18VA (all still available; although don't plan on an immediate order-then-ship via a brick and mortar store).

There are several geeklists about 18xx games that would prove quite useful.

 
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Ron K
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'80' maxlength='250'> </td> </tr> <tr> <td width="15%" align="right"><b>Avatar OverText</b></td> <td width="85%"> <input type="text" name="overtext[avatar]" value="Train Game anyone?
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1870 rules: http://www.pbemitalia.it/figf/1870pbem/rules1870.rtf

1856 rules: http://thor.prohosting.com/~civilian/1856.en.htm
 
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Nate Sandall
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How many players will you typically have? They both play with three players but really there's almost too much money in the game which removes a lot of the tension. Both play excellent with four. With 5 1870 starts to have problems in that the players who do not start railroads in the first round have an awful time trying to catch up to the players who do. The low share limits, stock price shelf, and price protection make it really hard to reign in the leaders. I suspect the problem is even worse with six players but have yet to play either game with that number. Five player 1856 was quite harsh yet quite fun.
 
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Nate Sandall
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Quote:
I have seen more bankruptcies with 1856 than any other 18xx game.


Hmmm maybe you should play 1841

Seriously though if you're not going to have the money for a permenant train after you pay off your loans, you're better off using the Canadian government as your safety net - as a way of unloading your liability. Hanging onto a company that's dragging you down is a common mistake in any 18xx game.
 
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What sort of playing time do you folks get for 1856 with various numbers of players?
 
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Nate Sandall
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4-5 hours but we use an excel spreadsheet to calculate dividend payouts and then pay them all out at the end of the operating rounds.
 
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John Elbl
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Cavedog_pdx wrote:
Quote:
Hmmm maybe you should play 1841


I really want to play 1841. It's so difficult to find a copy. cry

And yes... I have tried to trade for both of the ones up on BGG.

The biggest time saver we have found with 18xx games is Poker Chips. They greatly speed up the game, due to ease of calculating cash and evaluating a company's cash.

Now, I would not want to play an 18xx without poker chips. I feel that it cuts as much as an hour of playing time off a long 18xx game.
 
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J C Lawrence
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Elf__Man wrote:
The biggest time saver we have found with 18xx games is Poker Chips. They greatly speed up the game, due to ease of calculating cash and evaluating a company's cash.


If you move to a spreadsheet on a laptop instead of poker chips you can likely easily save another 45+ minutes per game over and above the time you saved with the move to poker chips.
 
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Jason Gische
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1870 will definitely take longer, but it doesn't need to go over 6 hours unless you're playing very slowly. Take off an hour if you use poker chips. (I've never used a spreadsheet for the entire game, but always do for the final round.) I find it unlikely that you'll get much below 4 hours for 1870 unless you are really flying.

1856 is clearly the shorter, less forgiving game. But bankruptcies are mainly a problem in the early game, and should only happen to newbies who don't understand the brutal underfunding your railroads start with.

As with most 18xx games, more players usually make them game go faster rather than slower, since you have less railroads that you are personally running to worry about.
 
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J C Lawrence
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gische wrote:
As with most 18xx games, more players usually make them game go faster rather than slower, since you have less railroads that you are personally running to worry about.


While I've heard this before, more than once, I've not found it to be true simply due to the facts that the more players in the game the (generally) more viable the investment strategy is (invest in other players more than building and running your own companies), thus the more support and reason there is for the stock market jugglers to exercise their trade, and as a result the longer the more active/interesting stock rounds tend to be (such as the 100+ minute stock round in last weekend's 18C2C game or the 90 minute SR in my last four player 1856 game).
 
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Gavin Wynford-Jones
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Elf__Man wrote:

The biggest time saver we have found with 18xx games is Poker Chips. They greatly speed up the game, due to ease of calculating cash and evaluating a company's cash.

Now, I would not want to play an 18xx without poker chips. I feel that it cuts as much as an hour of playing time off a long 18xx game.


How does using chips make a difference? Just curious.

Gavin
 
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Bill Byrd
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gavingva wrote:
Elf__Man wrote:

The biggest time saver we have found with 18xx games is Poker Chips. They greatly speed up the game...


How does using chips make a difference? Just curious.

Gavin


With poker chips it is easier to grab the amount you need from stacks. They are also easier to handle [1]. It makes little difference in a single transaction, but it has a tremendous additive effect over the hundreds of transactions in a game of 18xx. That being said, I intend to use a spreadsheet for my next session to see if we can shave another hour off the longer titles.

Another beneifit of using chips is that they take up a little less space on the table.

And they're cool...

Bill

[1] Players should be advised to set stacks of chips on the table when making payments. If players attempt to hand chips to each other, as they are used to doing with paper money, chips will be dropped and the game board will suffer.
 
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J C Lawrence
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gavingva wrote:
How does using chips make a difference? Just curious.


All questions of how much money someone has or is in a company treasury disappear. A quick glance reveals all. This can smooth and speed the decision points of when it is safe to sell down (eg sell all but your director's share and yet still be confident of retaining control of the company because you know quickly and easily exactly how much money each other player has and what it would cost them to take it away from you). All money exchanges are faster: paying of dividends, collections of withheld dividends, purchases of privates, payments for difficult terrain are simply faster due to the comparative ease of counting out N chips versus counting out N bits of script and carefully double checking that they are the right denominations and that none of the bills are folded or doubled. In fact most chip transactions can be done by feel rather than counting: a stack this high is that much, and a stack that high is >that< much. No counting, just simple familiarity. Chips are far easier to keep sorted, to arrange usefully, to estimate for financial calculations, to receive in payment, to insert into your current holdings, etc.

Where time is lost with chips is because many/most people just love riffling and playing with them, but that is a far smaller factor.
 
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Occu Pant
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Is this a publicly available spreadsheet? And do you use it for the whole game or just the final operating round? I am looking for an easy to use spreadsheet to run the whole session in a game coming up this weekend. Thanks for any help that you can provide.


Cavedog_pdx wrote:
4-5 hours but we use an excel spreadsheet to calculate dividend payouts and then pay them all out at the end of the operating rounds.
 
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Morgan Dontanville
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I'd start with 1860.
 
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J C Lawrence
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sisteray wrote:
I'd start with 1860.


As a first 18xx? While 1860 is a great game tht I love, no. It is too weird, contains too many McGuffins from both the base 1829 branch of 18Xx and the 1830 branch. Either go for one of the simpler 1830 derivatives (like one of the small state games), or for 1825.
 
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Shane Beck
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My personal disinclination to play 4 player 1856 stems from the fact the the three best companies are in the west while the fourth player is stuck in the east playing the welland or some other lame company. Starting the fourth company really sucks in 1856.
 
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Occu Pant
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Just to clarify, this will not be the first 18xx that this group has played. At least one of the players has played 1856 at least once before. And most of the others have played at least one of the shorter (i.e. 18AL) games at least once. But none of us has ever played with a spreadsheet. So, we are looking for a source of an easy-to-use spreadsheet (hoping for one as nice as the spreadsheet that was used to run the teaching game of 18AL here on BGG last year).



clearclaw wrote:
sisteray wrote:
I'd start with 1860.


As a first 18xx? While 1860 is a great game tht I love, no. It is too weird, contains too many McGuffins from both the base 1829 branch of 18Xx and the 1830 branch. Either go for one of the simpler 1830 derivatives (like one of the small state games), or for 1825.
 
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Michael Pargman
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Shane Beck wrote:
My personal disinclination to play 4 player 1856 stems from the fact the the three best companies are in the west while the fourth player is stuck in the east playing the welland or some other lame company. Starting the fourth company really sucks in 1856.


Excuse me, but CPR is by far the best company to start since you can easily get three trains running very early in the game. If two or three companies start in the west, they will eventually help each other by building a great track. Especially when the brown tiles arrive, and they can develop the cities very quickly to boost their incomes. But that is mainly a benefit against CPR when the T4's arrive and if the company has two trains, and a few tokens can easily change the prospects for CA or LPS.
 
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