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Kevin Klemme
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Mycelia Board Game Review

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Turn Order - Welcome Oliver

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14 Jan 2020 09:00 #306134 by oliverkinne
Turn Order was created by oliverkinne
Let's start 2020 with a serious topic and wade straight...

After you, Alphonse. No, you first, my dear Gaston!

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14 Jan 2020 10:16 - 14 Jan 2020 10:18 #306135 by ubarose
Replied by ubarose on topic Turn Order - Welcome Oliver
Today we are introducing our new associate writer and podcaster Oliver Kinne. So give him a warm welcome by reading his article and leaving a comment.

Also will be expanding our publishing week to Saturday with Oliver's reviews, so stop by this weekend to check it out.
Last edit: 14 Jan 2020 10:18 by ubarose.
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14 Jan 2020 10:57 #306136 by Space Ghost
Welcome Oliver!

I always liked the turn order in Dark World...random, but you got to shake the top of the castle to determine it.
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14 Jan 2020 12:12 #306140 by Shellhead
Replied by Shellhead on topic Turn Order
Good topic. If turn order is not crucial in terms of game balance, like in a co-op game, I like a simple clockwise turn order. If turn order is important, I like it to be another strategic element in the game, via bidding or some other way to seize the initiative. In one of my designs, I made initiative a push-your-luck element, where the first player was whoever had depleted their resources the most on the previous term. The game allowed for very direct interaction between players, so going first was an advantage, but being depleted made you more vulnerable to attacks by other players. Otherwise, I also like random initiative systems, especially a chit pull so nobody knows the turn order. Citadels has a great turn order, where there is a strategic element but the outcome is also secret until the turn plays out.
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14 Jan 2020 16:12 - 14 Jan 2020 16:15 #306146 by the_jake_1973
Replied by the_jake_1973 on topic Turn Order
Chit pull is my preferred turn order determination for wargames. Recent games like 1774 and 1812 make use of it nicely.
Last edit: 14 Jan 2020 16:15 by the_jake_1973.
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14 Jan 2020 17:17 #306147 by Jackwraith
Replied by Jackwraith on topic Turn Order
Welcome, Oliver!

I tend to prefer some means of establishing turn order within the game, rather than doing simple rotation. However, I can see the value of simple rotation because it's, well... simple! If the game is balanced enough that rotation is sufficient, that's usually a good thing.

But I like the strategic choices presented by, say, Star Trek: Ascendancy, where you bid resources on the cards at the beginning of each round. While that's often an important thing to fit into your overall plan, ST: A also doesn't rotate actions. You do everything you want before anyone else does, which is kind of a rarity in a lot of modern games. It's different in something like Cry Havoc, where the turn order is known going into the next round and is based on cards that have been played. So, instead of sacrificing resources, you're affecting your tactical actions by choosing to play certain cards that will move you up in the turn order, rather than doing something else. In contrast, placing a dude at the Jarl's Longhouse in Champions of Midgard guarantees you the first move in the next round, but it also shifts the whole rotation, so you're benefiting yourself, but you may also be benefiting the person(s) following you, as opposed to those at the end of the chain.

I think my favorite method is probably in Cyclades, though. You bid for turn order like in ST: A, but you're also bidding for particular gods and their associated actions. So, it's not just the ability to act first (and do everything, like ST: A) but also to be able to carry out a specific strategy. Meanwhile, the player(s) that doesn't get access to one of the gods ends up at the bottom with Apollo, which means more money, which means potentially greater ability to win the bid next round. There are a number of cool interactions in Cyclades, but I think that one is among my favorites. It's fairly elegant and tends to drive the game forward.
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15 Jan 2020 02:57 #306160 by thegiantbrain
Replied by thegiantbrain on topic Turn Order
Welcome Oliver.

One of the games I like most for its Turn Order is Roll Player. Although it is a simple turn order going clockwise round the table, it manages to make sure every person gets a chance to go first when picking dice. What you pick then determines what order you go in the shopping phase so there is an interesting choice to be made every turn.
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15 Jan 2020 03:15 #306162 by oliverkinne
Replied by oliverkinne on topic Turn Order
Thank you for the warm welcome everyone! I'm pleased to have been asked to become an associate writer for this amazing website.

Thank you also very much for your comments about turn order in games. It sounds like there is a huge mix of preferences, which I think is reflected in the many different implementations of turn order in the many games available in our hobby.

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