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oliverkinne
September 18, 2020
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Bots Up Board Game Review

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September 17, 2020
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September 15, 2020
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Min-Maxing

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Letterpress Board Game Review

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Short Cut to Remote Gaming Forum (29 Aug 2020)

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06 Apr 2020 08:31 #308941 by charlest

Gary Sax wrote: They're never going to win if you're playing a table that's too afraid to take their benefits to advantage themselves at the cost of increasing their win percentage. I can totally see how this dynamic would play out, though. Conservatism is the heart of being a new player for a lot of people.


Totally agree with you and Jackwraith. I really enjoy playing as the River Folk. I constantly point out that whoever didn't win should have been buying more cards.

In your setup the Duchy woudl have benefitted mensely from purchasing cards, that is a tough sell though if the player wasn't totally comfortably with the Duchy.
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06 Apr 2020 09:07 #308943 by hotseatgames
Honestly, I wish we had chosen to play Lords of Hellas.

I think the full name of Root should be Root: Inconsistent!
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06 Apr 2020 09:48 - 06 Apr 2020 09:51 #308946 by Disgustipater
If no one is buying from you, start playing the Otters like the mafia. Threaten to wreck their shit if they don't buy something.
Also, the otter player needs to be very proactive about selling their wares. At the beginning of every player's turn, remind them you have stuff they want and make sure they know why they should buy a particular thing.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 09:51 by Disgustipater.
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06 Apr 2020 10:29 #308947 by Jackwraith

hotseatgames wrote: Honestly, I wish we had chosen to play Lords of Hellas.


Save me, jeebus... What I would give to play either of those right now...

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06 Apr 2020 12:11 - 06 Apr 2020 14:06 #308954 by Jexik

hotseatgames wrote: TLDR, fuck the river folk


I've had a blog post kicking in my head for months about why they're my favorite faction. Now I'm gonna have to write it, just for you. And me.

EDIT:
therewillbe.games/blogs-by-members/7768-...e-to-the-otters-root

DOUBLE EDIT: Other people here had good points. The Duchy was the only real faction that might have bought stuff from the otters (since the Vagabond can't), and it was likely the first time for the Duchy and Conspiracy on those new factions so it would be hard to wrap your head around how the Otters' services might help. Try a standard Birds v. Cats + something not Vagabond game and you can see them doing better.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 14:06 by Jexik.
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06 Apr 2020 14:23 #308969 by dysjunct
I taught my 5yo how to play Crazy Eights. It's better than the various other games she likes (even the "hobby" kids games like Ghost Fightin' Treasure Hunters). Plus it is teaching her great skills. Manual dexterity for handling and cutting cards, mocking me when she wins, etc.
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06 Apr 2020 14:47 - 06 Apr 2020 14:48 #308974 by hotseatgames

Jexik wrote: DOUBLE EDIT: Other people here had good points. The Duchy was the only real faction that might have bought stuff from the otters (since the Vagabond can't), and it was likely the first time for the Duchy and Conspiracy on those new factions so it would be hard to wrap your head around how the Otters' services might help. Try a standard Birds v. Cats + something not Vagabond game and you can see them doing better.


FYI, the Vagabond CAN purchase from the Otters. They have to exhaust 1 item per required fund, and then the Otters have to put their OWN units in the payment box. At one point, I was actually going to buy a card from the Riverfolk, but they had all their units on the board and thus couldn't pay their own fee.

Also worth noting: the lake map makes this faction all but worthless, since river travel is only a raft ride away to anyone.

I'll also point out that one of the reasons I don't care for them relates to one of their ways to score points... doing nothing. They can earn points by sitting on a stockpile of funds. As you mention, there are likely better ways to make points, but if someone doesn't see that, or for whatever reason, it appears that the game is rewarding them for doing nothing on their turn.

You also bring up a good point about pricing their services at 1. If a service is priced at 1 and only 1 other player buys a service, then the Riverfolk get screwed since they get 2 funds of their own units if the payment box is empty. I would be very interested to know if Leder Games every tested the rule to be as follows, which sounds better to me:

If your payment box has less than 2 warriors in it, place your own warriors in it until it has 2.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 14:48 by hotseatgames.
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06 Apr 2020 14:57 - 06 Apr 2020 14:59 #308976 by Disgustipater
Otters thrive on the lake map. They can freely move between any coastal clearings regardless of rule, and can even take the ferry for a free card regardless of rule. It’s such a pain in the ass for other factions to move around that Riverboats become pretty valuable. They also basically control the ferry since they can move it as far out of the way as possible to make sure the Riverboats get purchased.

Unrelated: I really don’t like the lake map in general, irrelevant to faction.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 14:59 by Disgustipater.

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06 Apr 2020 15:18 - 06 Apr 2020 15:19 #308980 by hotseatgames
Interesting; in our game (granted we only played the lake one time), nobody ever even used the raft, and in fact, one player crafted a power to travel on the river just like the otters can. Such a card shouldn't exist in the game since it goes further in eliminating the need for the riverfolk.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 15:19 by hotseatgames.

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06 Apr 2020 15:29 #308983 by Jackwraith
That was the Exiles and Partisans deck. It has cards that emulate most of the other factions in one fashion or another. I still haven't played any games with it.

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06 Apr 2020 17:24 - 06 Apr 2020 19:15 #308994 by Jexik

hotseatgames wrote: FYI, the Vagabond CAN purchase from the Otters. They have to exhaust 1 item per required fund, and then the Otters have to put their OWN units in the payment box. At one point, I was actually going to buy a card from the Riverfolk, but they had all their units on the board and thus couldn't pay their own fee.


Crazy! Not sure how I missed that, tucked away in the Law of Root. It's pretty expensive though compared to the Cats or Lizards doing the same. Considering that just two items usually means doing a quest. Maybe if there's something you really want to craft like coins or a sword and no one is biting.

hotseatgames wrote: Interesting; in our game (granted we only played the lake one time), nobody ever even used the raft, and in fact, one player crafted a power to travel on the river just like the otters can. Such a card shouldn't exist in the game since it goes further in eliminating the need for the riverfolk.


I'd say the main need for the Riverfolk is to inject cards into people's hands. It's done in a more efficient way than the Vagabond does it, and it really helps the Cats and Birds in a way that helps the WA and Vagabond less since it's more expensive for them to buy services. The only times that I've really seen the waterways come into play was for the Eyrie to do wacky things to fulfill their decree.

I haven't played the lake yet so can't comment there. Same goes for the exiles and partisans deck really, but I'd be surprised if there aren't cards that people would like to buy in there.
Last edit: 06 Apr 2020 19:15 by Jexik.

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06 Apr 2020 18:41 #308996 by Erik Twice

Gary Sax wrote: They're never going to win if you're playing a table that's too afraid to take their benefits to advantage themselves at the cost of increasing their win percentage. I can totally see how this dynamic would play out, though. Conservatism is the heart of being a new player for a lot of people.

I've seen this happen in many games and it's very frustrating.

I don't think it's so much conservatism as it is fear of doing something wrong. Newbies tend to be scared of "looking dumb" or being ripped off. They would rather slowly sink that put themselves into what seems to be a risky proposition. I'm biased here, but often people just outright refuse to make deals with me because I'm "too good" and working with me seems emotionally risky to them in ways that doing nothing is not.

Pointing out how they come ahead or why they would benefit does not work. You can't reason people out of a thought they did not reason themselves in. And competitive arguments don't work either, because they are not trying to win, they are just trying not to look dumb. It's a self-justificating fear.

The worst thing about this, is that it creates games that are downright miserable. First, if you are the Otter player or whatever, you are not even playing the game. You are deprived of any and all agency and cannot play on any reasonable manner. And the other players will also have less fun and, depending on the game, will slowly get locked of their own agency as well. I often see this in 18XX, where players never take risks and end up taking the path of a drawn-out loss spiral over ensuring their own future.

Disgustipater wrote: If no one is buying from you, start playing the Otters like the mafia. Threaten to wreck their shit if they don't buy something.

This does not work. They see it as proof that what they are doing is right. I mean, you are being mean to them, aren't you?

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06 Apr 2020 21:18 #309000 by n815e
Has anyone played Hellenica from Mr B?

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06 Apr 2020 23:08 #309002 by RobertB

Erik Twice wrote:

Gary Sax wrote: They're never going to win if you're playing a table that's too afraid to take their benefits to advantage themselves at the cost of increasing their win percentage. I can totally see how this dynamic would play out, though. Conservatism is the heart of being a new player for a lot of people.

I've seen this happen in many games and it's very frustrating.

I don't think it's so much conservatism as it is fear of doing something wrong. Newbies tend to be scared of "looking dumb" or being ripped off. They would rather slowly sink that put themselves into what seems to be a risky proposition. I'm biased here, but often people just outright refuse to make deals with me because I'm "too good" and working with me seems emotionally risky to them in ways that doing nothing is not.

Pointing out how they come ahead or why they would benefit does not work. You can't reason people out of a thought they did not reason themselves in. And competitive arguments don't work either, because they are not trying to win, they are just trying not to look dumb. It's a self-justificating fear.

The worst thing about this, is that it creates games that are downright miserable. First, if you are the Otter player or whatever, you are not even playing the game. You are deprived of any and all agency and cannot play on any reasonable manner. And the other players will also have less fun and, depending on the game, will slowly get locked of their own agency as well. I often see this in 18XX, where players never take risks and end up taking the path of a drawn-out loss spiral over ensuring their own future.

Why would I take the advice another player gives me, unless it's a learning game? I don't think ignoring advice from the other players is necessarily a bad thing, especially if I'm a newbie. In a game like Root you don't have any friends, you just have people smiling at you.

Erik Twice wrote:

Disgustipater wrote: If no one is buying from you, start playing the Otters like the mafia. Threaten to wreck their shit if they don't buy something.

This does not work. They see it as proof that what they are doing is right. I mean, you are being mean to them, aren't you?

I'm usually not this big of a prick to total strangers, but I'm more than willing to let friends and relatives know that you go Mafia on me, you're now on the top of my list and you aren't winning this game. Mutual Assured Destruction - it's not just for the 20th century anymore.
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10 Apr 2020 11:43 #309131 by Disgustipater
5-player game of Hyperspace. My original feelings on the game have not changed, and have actually gotten stronger. I liked playing it even less than the first time. There’s just no progression. You can do anything you want at any time. Big thumbs down from me.
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