Author Topic: Carcassonne spin-offs  (Read 5005 times)

Offline asparagus

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Carcassonne spin-offs
« on: July 15, 2014, 01:56:36 PM »
I have no interest in the variants of Carcassonne (or at least the incompatible ones). So I have to ask rather than find out for myself: Are the variants anything other than just rebranding? Could you for example merge all the rules of the variants back into the main game?

Linkback: http://www.carcassonnecentral.com/community/index.php?topic=890.0
« Last Edit: January 25, 2015, 08:17:57 AM by MrNumbers, Reason: Changed thread\'s name »

Offline whaleyland

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Re: The variants
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2014, 06:01:49 PM »
Which "variants" are you talking about? Do you mean spin-off games? Fan-expansions? I'm not aware of any "official" variants.

Offline asparagus

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Re: The variants
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2014, 10:54:13 PM »
Which "variants" are you talking about? Do you mean spin-off games? Fan-expansions? I'm not aware of any "official" variants.

Yes I meant official spin-offs such as South Seas, the Winter edition etc.

Offline Paul

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Re: The variants
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2014, 11:40:01 PM »
I own Discovery which is quite different to the regular Carcassonne.

It has some interesting features. You can remove your follower even if features are not completed and you score by completing mountains or certain features has a city / harbour.
  Only read the rules ones and never played it (yet) but it certainly takes a new perspective.
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Offline whaleyland

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Re: The variants
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2014, 11:45:23 PM »
I figured as much:

Ark of the Covenant — Pretty easy to add the concepts to the base game, though sheep and wolves would have to be added to tiles (they don't work like the new expansion). The ark itself works much like the fairy and the temples could easily be worked in as an alternative to cloister rules (perhaps use cults to differentiate).

The Castle — Very different all around. There are no placement restrictions and the board itself is constricted in size.

Hunters & Gatherers — Rivers have fish and lakes, fields have animals, forests have gold. All could be adapted to the base game (and maybe already has been via a fan expansion).

New World — I adapted elements of this game into The Reconquest of Gaul a few years back. Check for it in the expansions section.

Winter Edition — Identical to the base game except for the snow.

Wheel of Fortune — Basically an expansion with a bunch of extra tiles.

The City — The walls add an interesting element and could probably be added to the base game, though I can't remember how this game really plays. The art is terrible and the game is the most boring of the tile-based spin-offs.

The Discovery — Never played but I've heard it is hard to adapt.

Kids of Carcassonne — Simpler version of the main game. Pretty easy to adapt, though it would t work as an expansion.

South Seas — Never played but the concepts are quite a bit different from the main game and would be difficult to adapt.

Offline danisthirty

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Re: The variants
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2014, 05:18:38 AM »
I've played South Seas quite a lot and I'd say it's too different to merge with the original Carcassonne. For one thing you only have 4 meeples which seems low but you can reclaim rather than deploy if you have none left in your supply. Also, you don't score points for completed features, you win tokens which you use in certain combinations to "buy" points.

I've only ever played 2-player games against my wife and our games tend to be far more friendly and less competitive than normal Carcassonne. She prefers this, but I miss the cut-throat element to some degree.

Overall, some of the changes are more subtle than others but it feels very well balanced and includes some excellent ideas.
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Offline asparagus

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Re: The variants
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2014, 01:31:09 PM »
All good stuff but not really answering my fundamental question. Apart from the commercial owners of HiG and allied companies would anyone be negatively impacted if these variant expansions did not exist?


Offline Paul

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Re: The variants
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2014, 02:12:41 PM »
Question: Are the variants just a rebranding?
  Answer: No. Each has at least one significant rule change to classify this as a spinoff because it varies largely from the original. This even if the basis of the idea is always present: To draw and lay a tile.

Question: Could you merge all the rules of the variants into the base game of Carcassonne?
  Answer: In most cases, if not all, most certainly.

One of my many Carcassonne projects is just that, to make the spin offs compatible with the base game and it's expansions. I'll make it official once the solid work is done. Teaser: It's already partially out there by others, posted somewhere on this forum.  :-X

Offline whaleyland

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Re: The variants
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2014, 06:54:06 PM »
All good stuff but not really answering my fundamental question. Apart from the commercial owners of HiG and allied companies would anyone be negatively impacted if these variant expansions did not exist?
Nobody would be negatively impacted if Carcassonne didn't exist. This isn't a logical or fair statement. I quite enjoy some of the spin-offs but no single game, regardless of its branding, origin, or owner, is so important that its loss would be a great loss to society at large.

Offline asparagus

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Re: The variants
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2014, 11:09:51 PM »
Nobody would be negatively impacted if Carcassonne didn't exist.

Really?  My life would be much poorer.  Much more boring. Of course I would not know it because I would not know that Carcassonne could have existed.

This is pretty much the situation in my childhood. I knew games existed but I did not know that other people who might play with me existed. To get  a game of monopoly I had to put my teddy bears in a circle.

Offline daliles

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Re: Carcassonne spin-offs
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2016, 10:48:36 PM »
I agree. Without Carcassonne, I would not proceed beyond Settlers, nor would I have discovered multiple paths to victory in other games.
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Offline whaleyland

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Re: Carcassonne spin-offs
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2016, 11:06:28 PM »
I agree. Without Carcassonne, I would not proceed beyond Settlers, nor would I have discovered multiple paths to victory in other games.
I will agree somewhat with this sentiment. From 2005 - 2007, I was Catan-only. I barely knew of other games. I only discovered Seafarers and Cities & Knights in late 2006. Carcassonne came as a surprise in Spring 2007 when I decided on a complete whim to buy the Big Box. That being said, I had played a few rounds of Toulouse online between games of Catan with some friends on AsoBrain Games and knew it was fun. I'd say most of the games since them have derived from my own research, not necessarily from my previous experience with Catan or Carcassonne, although an advertising insert in the Big Box may have broadened my awareness of other games...maybe.


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