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Subject: The Gate. Why? rss

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mike tauman

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I have read through the rules and I taught my g/f how to play last night and we played our first game. Obviously 2-player leaves a bit to be desired but at least we fully understand the game mechanics now. This weekend we hope to play 3-way.

Here is my question. Why the Gate? We never took it and I could not conceive of a reason to take it. You don't get any special Denier discount by going to the gate... if you did I can see maybe after my g/f passed I could take the gate for 1, then move to an unoccupied building in Phase 3 that would have cost me more than 1 to occupy during phase 2.

Also if the Gate took place AFTER the bridge/provost move I could see taking the Gate because I was afraid if I took a building far down the road it would be inactive, and at least with the Gate I could maybe find some other less attractive but active building... but since the Gate goes first it is before ALL provost movement so that's not it.

Is it solely for people who just are not sure what they want to do and they want to see what everyone else does first and then later choose which of the 2-3 remaining unoccupied buildings they want? Even in 2-player early on we occupied every building almost... I can just imagine in 4-5 player every building might be occupied on every turn, making the Gate completely worthless.

So I was hoping someone would tell me what the advantages are of taking the Gate - when does it help or when should I worry if my opponents take it?
 
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Philip Thomas
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Good question, I am also interested in the answer, will be hopefully explaining Caylus for the first time on Saturday...

 
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Michelle Zentis
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blakjaks wrote:
Also if the Gate took place AFTER the bridge/provost move I could see taking the Gate because I was afraid if I took a building far down the road it would be inactive, and at least with the Gate I could maybe find some other less attractive but active building... but since the Gate goes first it is before ALL provost movement so that's not it.


Yeah, I don't get the gate either. Even if it took place after the "move the Provost 3 spaces" but before the bridge, it would be much more attractive.

I've probably played a good 10 games of Caylus, and I think I've seen the gate used MAYBE twice.
 
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mike tauman

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The one thing I just thought of, although it seems silly, would be if the only buildings left I either do not need or do not want (b/c it is an opponent's building lets say and I don't want him getting the prestige point) but I do not want to pass right now because it will be important for me to be the LAST player to move the provost... I spend a couple coins and throw my worker in the Gate? Now if everything else is occupied or my opponents have a similar problem they are compelled to pass before me, allowing me to be at the end of the provost-bribing phase?

I guess there may be a time where this is a slight benefit, but it is placing the worker merely to postpone passing, as opposed to the "benefit" of the gate where you can move your worker on to any unoccupied building. I mean if the sole purpose was passing-position why call it a Gate just make it a local tavern where your worker can hang out and drink for a few hours and then stagger home. laugh
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David Tolin
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I didn't see a lot of use for it, personally, during the one 3-player game I played, but here's an idea:

If you've placed a marker on the Provost, meaning you'll be moving it this round and influencing which buildings get activated, you could also place a marker on the gate. This way, you could force everyone else to place all of their markers before seeing where you place *your* final marker.

It might be helpful to keep others from knowing how far down the line you intend to activate buildings (i.e., how far out you place that last gate marker).

That's the only strategic reason for it that I could see, but I'd be curious to hear other ideas about it.
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mike tauman

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caesarmom wrote:
blakjaks wrote:
Also if the Gate took place AFTER the bridge/provost move I could see taking the Gate because I was afraid if I took a building far down the road it would be inactive, and at least with the Gate I could maybe find some other less attractive but active building... but since the Gate goes first it is before ALL provost movement so that's not it.


Yeah, I don't get the gate either. Even if it took place after the "move the Provost 3 spaces" but before the bridge, it would be much more attractive.

I've probably played a good 10 games of Caylus, and I think I've seen the gate used MAYBE twice.


I am glad I am not alone in this. I know I only played just 1 game but I consider myself to be a decent tactical player and I am pretty good at seeing the angles in most games I play... and I sat there when explaining the game last night and telling my g/f what the gate does and then I stopped for 2-3 minutes trying to figure out any possible benefit to the Gate and I was stumped.

I'd hate to think the Gate is extremely powerful and I am just too stupid to see its benefits... I mean I am getting older but I am not that old yet!
 
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Kai Peters
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Until recently, I would have said that the gate is completely worthless.
By now, I've found exactly one opportunity where it was good: to get to the castle as last player when you're in a front position.
Suppose you could provide four batches while your opponent could provide five. Now, if you get in first, whatever you do, your opponent can overtake you by one and take the favor. If you're last, he must provide four or five batches to boot you out, and if he does, you can provide only one batch and save the rest to take the favor (probably) in the next turn. If he doesn't, you can decide whether to go over him or not.

This was the only use the gate had for me, but when needed it's pretty powerful. All other combinations (such as with the guild) didn't work out for me.
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mike tauman

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Stargaze wrote:
Until recently, I would have said that the gate is completely worthless.
By now, I've found exactly one opportunity where it was good: to get to the castle as last player when you're in a front position
Suppose you could provide four batches while your opponent could provide five. Now, if you get in first, whatever you do, your opponent can overtake you by one and take the favor. If you're last, he must provide four or five batches to boot you out, and if he does, you can provide only one batch and save the rest to take the favor (probably) in the next turn. If he doesn't, you can decide whether to go over him or not.

This was the only use the gate had for me, but when needed it's pretty powerful. All other combinations (such as with the guild) didn't work out for me.


Hmm this is interesting. I was thinking getting to the castle first would be beneficial since you get the favor on a tie, but perhaps getting in last to force your opponents' hand is a better play.

Still I would think it better to wait until your opponent plays into the castle, and then just walk in right behind him. Why Gate first? Unless you are afraid, in a 4-5 player game, that before the guy with 5 batches goes to the castle other people will start passing and then it will cost you a lot more to follow him in, whereas you take the Gate right away at a lower cost, let your opponent walk into the castle, watch 2 other people pass and then you would have saved a couple coins.

Very interesting scenario I can see that happening on occasion. Thanks!

Any others?
 
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Robert Rossney
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I see that another person has given the same answer (more or less) while I was writing this. Nonetheless:

The gate's a way to mount a fight at very little cost to yourself. The most common scenario I've seen in which the gate is used:

Player A has sent a worker to the castle. It seems like he's going to gather enough resources to build two building pieces, depending on where he places his remaining workers.

Player B has enough resources to play two building pieces now, but he's low on money. He wants to stop playing workers as soon as possible. He also doesn't want to send a worker to the castle unless he's certain to get a favor out of the deal.

If B puts a worker on the gate, he can wait until after all placement is done and then assess whether or not A will have enough resources to play two building pieces. If A does, he sends his worker to any somewhat-useful building that's still available, and saves his resources to work on the castle next turn. If A doesn't, he sends his worker to the castle.

"But," you may say, "it doesn't matter if B gets his favor this turn or next." Probably true, except if B gets it this turn, he's not just getting himself a favor, he's depriving A of a favor.

"But," you may say, "isn't it better for B to just place his worker somewhere useful, and just wait till next turn?" Not necessarily. Placing the worker on the gate continues to pressure A into gathering enough resources to build two building pieces, even though B has passed out on worker placement. And if A gives up, B gets a favor.

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Adam Smiles
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The Gate can be a very useful building. As has been pointed out, combining the gate with the provost move space is a very powerful combination. As you can hide your intentions on how far down the road the provost might be going.

It's also useful for delaying other decisions. Like deciding after everyone has passed, whether or not you want to go to the Castle. If Bob goes to the castle, he could deliver more batches than you and win the favor. But if Carol goes there with out Bob, you can deliver more batches and steal the favor from her. Since both Bob and Carol have more money than you, you'll be passing before they finish placing all of their workers.

There's also the case of, "will scoring take place this round or not?" If your decision about which building to go to is based on the game clock than you need to see alot more information before you can decide where your worker should go.

While many of the other buildings are very straight forward, the power and advantages of the gate are a bit more subtle. The useful of the gate may also depending on the play style of the group. Certain play styles may make the gate more useful and other styles may make it a very ineffective choice.
 
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Gary Heidenreich
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Only played once so I don't remember. If you place a worker at the gate early, it cost one to place, correct? Now, when all is said and done and he decides to place it on another building, that doesn't cost anything, correct? That (if my thinking is correct) AND the ability to move the provost last can be a vaild strategy at points in the game.
 
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Kai Peters
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blakjaks wrote:
Still I would think it better to wait until your opponent plays into the castle, and then just walk in right behind him. Why Gate first? Unless you are afraid, in a 4-5 player game, that before the guy with 5 batches goes to the castle other people will start passing and then it will cost you a lot more to follow him in, whereas you take the Gate right away at a lower cost, let your opponent walk into the castle, watch 2 other people pass and then you would have saved a couple coins.


Not only that. If two players know they both want to get to the castle and they both have several batches to burn, they both know the risk of going in first.
This is not needed if you're the only one with batches to burn. If you can secure the favor for one or two batches, do so as first supplier.
 
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mike tauman

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Some very excellent answers. Thank you all very much. It was bothering the heck out of me since last night because I knew there had to be a reason for this space!

I kind of like the hiding-your-intentions with the provost more than the castle theory because although I understand that you might want to sneak in behind someone and make them buy as many loads as they can to assure the favor, the flip side is once you realize you cannot beat someone in the castle you probably won't go there, and they may be able to build just 1 batch, get the favor, and still have ample resources to go back next turn and still beat you out. I would almost rather hit the castle first, spend my batch and FORCE them to spend at least 2... yes they get the favor and I don't, but at least I have depleted their cube supply so they can't get favors in back to back turns.

However with provost movement the one thing I saw last night was, when my g/f sent a worker to a building far down the road, I KNEW she wasn't intending on backing the provost up and I could slide into a building right behind her not worrying so much about provost movement. Had she taken the Gate I would not know for certain what her plan was and I might have been more hesitant to go down the road.

Definitely a subtle but intriguing option, taking the gate.

The thing that still concerns me is, lets say just in that example above, you want to hide your intentions so you take the gate instead of a building down the road. Now someone else takes the building you originally wanted for yourself. Sure you might be able to beat them out with the provost, making their worker essentially useless, but whether you win or lose that battle, you lost the use of that building you initially wanted to occupy this turn which may have other repercussions.

I guess the only other question I might have then, in this vein, is that I only played the 2-player version last night, and even with just 2 of us it seemed most buildings wound up being filled or close to it especially the first half of the game. In a 4 or 5 player game with a potential of 30 workers in play, are there really a lot of unoccupied buildings after phase 2 is over? It would seem to me that workers would be all over the place fighting to get into those key buildings especially once people start tearing buildings down and converting them into residences, which would even lessen the value of the Gate since it would hide your intentions but once everything is filled up, it doesn't make a difference what your intentions were you are stuck with a worker you have no use for which you paid hard earned cash for.
 
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Seth Jaffee
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As has been mentioned in various forms in this thread and others, the gate is a very useful building in Caylus. It is useful because it is versatile. It is true that it would be more useful if it occurred directly after the provost-mover, and I would prefer it that way, but the game designer/playtester has mentioned in these forums that they found the Gate too powerful that way. *shrug* I doubt that's true, butt hat's the decision they came to. The question that remains for us is, how to make the most out of that decision:

1. "Hiding intentions". I don't know that I'd phrase it like that, I think about it less like "I want that building, but I don't want people to know that yet" and more like "If the provost moves forward I want that building, and if it moves back I don't." Thus, I frequntly (especially in 2 player) choose the provost mover and then the Gate. My intentions are not hidden, if my opponent plays near the provost, I will jack him out of his buildings. If he does not, I can jump in onthe good buildings sown the road. Sitting on the Gate and the provost mover is a good threat, it's like bluffing, but it works whether they call your bluff or not. This works extremely well every time a good building is built near the provost in a 2-player game, and it works sometimes in a 3 player game as well. It's possible that in 4 or 5 player this tactic is less useful on account of too many people working together to move the provost, but then with 4 and 5 players the game is not much fun anyway - too chaotic.
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Obviously 2-player leaves a bit to be desired but at least we fully understand the game mechanics now. This weekend we hope to play 3-way.

I urge you to reconsider your opinion of 2 player Caylus... it's likely the best way to play the game. 3 player is also good. I prefer either or both of those to 4 or 5 player, which I find too chaotic and not much fun.

2. Getting into the castle late. Again, I prefer to look at this another way... rather than be concerned with who's building how many batches, if someone else already went to the castle (so you are not first), and you intend to go to the castle, then why not play in the Gate instead? You lose nothing, and you gain the ability to change your mind. You also prevent anyone else from using the Gate, thereby keeping opponents from having more options. If you ever intend to go in the castle and not be first, then there's no reason not to use the Gate.

Now, sometimes it DOES matter if you're first in the castle, or at least in there before a particular player. In that case you can't count on the Gate to help you out, you have to place in the castle.

A good point has already been brought up in this thread, what happens when 2 players have a lot of cubes? If I can send 4 batches and you can send 5, you want to be behind me in tha castle. That way I have to choose - do I spend my cubes and risk not get a favor? Or just send 1 batch and not get a favor? If I can send 5 and you 4, it's similar... you want me to make the choice: send all 5 to get the favor, or just spend one and let you get it. If I choose the former, you can just send 1 batch and have a bunch left over. If I choose the latter, you send the 2 batches and get the favor. The only benefit from going first in either of those cases is being able to send the same number of batches the opponent can send, thereby securing the favor as cheaply as possible.

I don't know how clear that last paragraph was, but if you understand that sometimes it's better to be in the castle last, then maybe you can see why the Gate is a good choice - it guarantees you a spot in the castle, and you'll be last.

3. Biding time. All by itself, placing 1 more worker so you don't have to pass could be useful at one point or another. That's irresective of where you place. There are times when you have several buildings you might like to go to, and you can be pretty sure your opponent doesn't want to go to them (like the Jousting Field or the Lawyer if he has no purple, or sometimes the mason or carpenter when they don't have the cubes for it) In this case it's nice to place in the Gate to keep your options open. Suppose for example you would like to build either in the Mason or the Carpenter, but for one you need the gray and for the other you need the brown. If you place on the Mason your opopnent could place on the gray, and if you place on the carpenter he could block the brown. you could then place on the Gate so you don't have to decide until you see which resources you'll have. Not a perfect example, but it illustrates another possible use of the gate.

4. Someone else controls the Provost. related to number 1... if someone else places in the provost-mover, you could recklessly place near the provost to get a building, but risk getting screwed later - especially in 2 player. If you instead place on the Gate, then you can wait and see if the opponent places workers down the road, you can guage if they will be moving the provost foreward or back, and you can slip in to a good building if they decide to go foreward.

The Gate has it's uses, and I've been happy with using it many times. It is subtle, so I see why people would be hesitant to use it, but if you try it out I think you'll find it's usefulness. It's not so powerful that you want to use it first thing every time, but it certainly has it's uses.
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Matthew Fisk
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I can see its use is a 2-3 player game possibly. I have played almost exclusively 4-5 player games (mostly 4) and placing on the gate is pretty much suicide unless you are bluffing on castle building. Even with the buildings built almost to game end every one of them can be occupied by players, if you place a worker on the gate in the end you will find yourself with NOWHERE to place that worked except in the castle as EVERY OTHER space has been taken. That or you get a small bonus if very few people have spent money on turn order and you can sneak in 2nd or 3rd place.

The usefullness of the gate certainly dwindles in a four-five player game.
 
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Ian MacInnes
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The gate is one of the most interesting buildings in the game. It gets played most turns in 2 player because it is usually better to be second in the castle (except when the walls or tower phase could end or when both players have few cubes). With over two players it is more situational. It is obviously intended as a late pick but I have found in this game that late picks are a lot more important than they seem.

Contrary to popular belief I find two-player to be the most fascinating version of the game - it's like a tennis match, back and forth with an occasional error, forced or unforced. Another key building in the first half of the game for 2 player is the Guild Hall. If you can pass last and have sufficient cash you have nearly complete control over which buildings will activate.
 
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mike tauman

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Great post sedjtroll. After reading your post as well as the replies above I definitely can see the usefulness of the Gate, whereas this morning I thought it was wasted space on the board.

I am not so sure I like it yet but after playing just 1 game how do you really know what works best and what doesn't work at all in any game?

As for the 2-player game, even though more people usually leads to more chaos in most of these types of games I tend to enjoy them more. Fewer players can often lead to a more strategic game since you can really plan on what your one opponent is going to do and how to thwart their efforts, whereas with 5 players there are so many people doing so many different things you just cannot defend against them all at once, so from a purity perspective I can see 2-3 way games being preferred.

4-5 way games to me are usually more of a social event than a strategice battle for bragging rights and I tend to find those games more unpredictable and more enjoyable, and winning, although I always want to win, takes on a secondary role.

It seems to me like a game like Caylus was really designed for 4 people, perhaps 5. In the 2 player version there are a couple things missing. First of all the Stables are not in play, and I think one of the most intriguing things about this game is that you have to send a worker to the stables to up your turn-order the next turn. Secondly, the Inn didn't even come into play in the game I played last night, and upon reading the rules I thought the Inn would be HUGE. I got it early, my g/f kicked me out a turn later, and after that I found I didn't even need it. For the most part, once one of us passed, the other was ready to pass. Only once all game did I spend 3 deniers to place a worker before passing.

I can envision jockeying for position in the Stables and the advantages of holding the Inn to be extremely important in a 4 or 5 way game. However, say you play 5th in a round... 4 players already placed workers ahead of you limiting your selection. If you go right to the stables (to get to first next round) then there may be 4 LESS buildings open by the time you pick again in THIS round. Placing your first productive worker after 8 buildings are taken is a pretty big disadvantage, and its making tough decisions like that that I enjoy the most.
 
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mike tauman

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Sylvus wrote:
I can see its use is a 2-3 player game possibly. I have played almost exclusively 4-5 player games (mostly 4) and placing on the gate is pretty much suicide unless you are bluffing on castle building. Even with the buildings built almost to game end every one of them can be occupied by players, if you place a worker on the gate in the end you will find yourself with NOWHERE to place that worked except in the castle as EVERY OTHER space has been taken. That or you get a small bonus if very few people have spent money on turn order and you can sneak in 2nd or 3rd place.

The usefullness of the gate certainly dwindles in a four-five player game.


That was exactly what I was thinking. Even in just 2-player we occupied most of the buildings on every turn, even late in the game since we had cut down 5 of the neutral buildings and made them into residences, it seemed that our 12 workers filled most buildings (except the Gate) each turn.

The thing is that my girlfriend is a passive player and just enjoys playing. She is not a cutthroat win-at-all-costs player and on many occasions I could have totally burned her with provost movement. But when its just the two of us I "play nice". In fact when the Bailiff was 2 spaces away from the Tower I could have spent just 1 denier to push the provost up a space forcing the final turn in the game but since I would have won (I won anyway) I chose not to do it to give her another chance.

Keeping that in mind, since the two of us play a fun but less strategic game, the Gate was fairly useless.

 
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Dan The Man
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Basically, most of the uses have been described.

A clarification: many times, even when the big dog gets to the castle first, a lesser player can force him or her to convert more cubes at little cost by coming in behind (in the example, the 5-batch player will need to spend 4 batches to get the favor, while the 4-batch player will have 3 batches vs. 1 batch to start the next turn. Or, the big dog may play 3 batches, giving you the choice, so be prepared for the possibility).

The possessions of other players will modify the outcome and need to be considered. Playing FTF allows some negotiation in this whole process, though collaboration is possible on BSW as well.


Now, you will find, the more experience you have, the more you will use the Gate (and the fewer the number of players, the more you will use the gate).

There may be a time, after you've played a bit, but are still not quite comfortable with the whole thing, where you overuse the Gate, but this phase will not last long!

BEWARE that the Gate may prove a strong temptation on the (not quite realized) last turn - and you can blow your chance of shipping (building in the castle, thus devaluing your cubes) by delaying your placement on the castle...

If it looks like there are enough loads out there (in possession and on the road) to fill the tower section, don't get caught being late to the show - whether you choose the Gate or not! Best to ship and not get a favor, than to have the most cubes but not be able to ship; first, because cubes not used to build get devalued by 2/3+, second, there are the section scoring favors you will lose out on. VPs are VPs!
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Gary Bradley
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Still I would think it better to wait until your opponent plays into the castle, and then just walk in right behind him.


There are a number of reasons, but the obvious ones are that either he hasn't gone to the castle yet because he the majority of cubes and thus thinks he can just waltz on up there with a late worker. Hence you hit the gate early to ensure you will be behind him.

I'm surprised there is so much confusion over this very powerful building. In the early game, you usually want to be FIRST at the castle if you are going at all, because you can calculate from what is on the board that NO ONE can out-build you, hence being first there guarentees the favour. However in the mid- to late-game, this is no longer true. Many people have a ton of cubes, there are many resource buildings available and the provost could end up anywhere. At this point in the game you almost always want to be LAST to the castle in most situations as there are so many unknowns. Last is now better than first.


Quote:
I kind of like the hiding-your-intentions with the provost more than the castle theory because although I understand that you might want to sneak in behind someone and make them buy as many loads as they can to assure the favor, the flip side is once you realize you cannot beat someone in the castle you probably won't go there, and they may be able to build just 1 batch, get the favor, and still have ample resources to go back next turn and still beat you out.


NO! You still go to the castle from the Gate even if you cannot out-build them. Your presence behind them can force them to overspend. Say I can build 5 batches and you can only build 4. If I am last at the castle then I will out-build you by precisely one batch every time, guarenteeing me the favour. However, if I am first there, how many do I build? One, two or three and you will out-build me and steal. Four? Then you will build one batch (or even zero) and dominate the game from then on with your cube mastery.

Consider further the specific situation of the end game (last few turns). People often have a huge stock of cubes and plan to use their final castle favours on the build track to build Prestige. If you are behind them in the castle and force them to overspend even by just one batch, you can often have quite a big effect on their building capability when they win the favour. [Look out for the Tower section being dangerously full though, you don't want to be last in this situation.]


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It would seem to me that workers would be all over the place fighting to get into those key buildings especially once people start tearing buildings down and converting them into residences, which would even lessen the value of the Gate since it would hide your intentions but once everything is filled up, it doesn't make a difference what your intentions were you are stuck with a worker you have no use for which you paid hard earned cash for.


Correct. The Gate is pretty much for castle position-juggling, not hiding your worker placement intentions. I've never seen it used to occupy a standard building by stealth, because as you say, all the best stuff is gone by then. The one exception is the 2-player game where provost movement is well-defined (less chaotic) and thus you can use the Gate to see if a powerful late buildings is going to be safe or not.


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I urge you to reconsider your opinion of 2 player Caylus... it's likely the best way to play the game. 3 player is also good. I prefer either or both of those to 4 or 5 player, which I find too chaotic and not much fun.


Agree 100%


 
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david landes
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There is an earlier, longer discussion on this under the following listing:

"The Gate - Has it been popular with anyone else's group?"

A couple additional twists:
We have found the Gate useful in turn order situations. If one is currently second or third in the order, but comfortable with one's current position, but not comfortable with the next position down... then using the gate to respond to someone else who chooses to move up (by also choosing it) is a good "holding" tank. If no one wants to move up, the position can be used to supercede the person in the Inn. Or to take a weaker, but still desireable leftover, or even take a riskier downhill space after you have seen who else is playing risky downhill (and who is not and has enough money to play spoiler).

It can also be used to buy time if one does NOT want to be out of the worker placement business and to put one's self later in the passing order to be in position to protect a risky downhill investment.

Also, after the worker placement is done, one has a fair first guess of whether the provost will cause the bailiff to move 1 or two spaces. If two spaces would end the building in a section of the castle, and it is important to have another piece of the castle in the old section, then the gate preserves the right to get in on the action... or if it looks like the provost will only move the bailiff one... to use one of the earlier alternatives.

In short, and not being an expert by any means, the Gate may not be the strongest place to play, but it is good for hedging your bets among a number of other plays all of which are worth more than the coin spent, and it is also good for bridge (passing spaces) turn order if one needs to delay to protect important downhill investments. This makes the Gate a more indirect play, but not necessarily useless or weak.
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Alex Rockwell
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One of the most significant gate uses, in 2 player, is when you both have a lot of cubes. You want the gate, so that you cna make sure you are second at the castle. Then the other guy has to either blow everything, to get the favor, and you make 1 batch, and beat him the next ocuple, or you just make one more than him. Of course, when you both have few cubes, the advantage is in going to the castle 1st.

There are also a lot of tactics with it ,especially if one player is going to have to pass early. If the other guy has to pass early, you can go gate. Then, if he wants stuff at the edge of town, he has to waste one of his few workers on the provost mover, otherwise you will go there and screw him. If he doesnt, then you go to one of them after he passes.

If you are the one who has to pass early, the gate helps you not get screwed as bad in the same way, and makes your opponent spend one of his extra workers on the provost mover, so he doesnt get as far ahead.
 
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Michel Condoroussis
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Quote:
I urge you to reconsider your opinion of 2 player Caylus... it's likely the best way to play the game. 3 player is also good. I prefer either or both of those to 4 or 5 player, which I find too chaotic and not much fun.


I have played twice now, once with 3 and once with 5. I find 5 to be better. Although it is longer and takes more thought since it seems there is never enough buildings, it really emphasizes the use of the Stables and the Inn. Which we almost never used in a three player game. The cost of 4 or 5 gold to play a piece after others have passed makes the Inn huge and with 5, buildings are always limited, so playing last hurts a lot, so the Stables come in to play a lot. Either way though, I love the game.

Pezpimp
 
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Scott Rubin
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I didn't read this whole thread since it's pretty long. But if anyone already said what I'm about to say then I apologize for being redundant.

The reason to use the gate is as an option to take the castle. You put a worker in the gate. Then after people have passed and it becomes expensive to choose a building you decide whether to go to the castle or not. If nobody went to the castle you can get the favor. If other people did go for the castle then you can go for a building. That's what I mostly use the gate for.
 
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Jeff Dawson
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Apreche wrote:
The reason to use the gate is as an option to take the castle. You put a worker in the gate. Then after people have passed and it becomes expensive to choose a building you decide whether to go to the castle or not. If nobody went to the castle you can get the favor. If other people did go for the castle then you can go for a building. That's what I mostly use the gate for.


Yes, that plus, in many cases it is better to be second to the castle in the middle game. Let's say both you and your opponent can both send four batches to the castle (especially in 2er). If your opponent wants the favor he needs to send four batches. You can then send one, and your opponent had to pay dearly for a favor. You can generally get a couple of "cheap" favors after that in the next couple of rounds because you have such a huge cube advantage over your opponent.
 
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