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Topics - Decar

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General / Community Discord Server
« on: August 19, 2022, 10:15:30 AM »
Some of you know that we've been experimenting with Discord; as Slack seemingly has became less popular.
Discord is a social platform for instant messaging and chat room.
After learning the skills, I'm finally (mostly) confident that it's safe and ready for the general public to join us.

Thank you to everyone who's joined already and help test out the functionality!

If you want to join:
  • Click this link:
  • Register or sign into Discord if you need to
  • In the #welcome channel you'll need read and accept the community rules and click the Blue-tick

We've broken down the channels into different sub-categories which are applicable to certain roles.
To assign yourself a role go to #roles and click the emojis for the topics that you're interested in.

If you need any help getting started, you can either use the #help channel, or you can message us here.

General / Most fun game of Carcassonne played?
« on: August 18, 2022, 02:17:22 AM »
Doom Shark started the thread : Least fun Carcassonne game you've played?

I think it's only fair to consider the game you've had the most fun playing too!

News and Events / Essen Spiel 2022 meetup
« on: July 06, 2022, 01:59:31 AM »
Some folks from CarcC are attending Essen Spiel later this year. It runs from October 5-9th.

I'll be there with Dan, Willem and RichTheFish from Thursday until Monday.

We're thinking of organizing a stop-and-say-hello session; that often acts as a good break from the chaos in the main fair.

Alternatively, we can meetup for a little longer, perhaps later in the day, perhaps I can book a table in a local restaurant for some dinner too.

No doubt there's time for a game of Carcassonne, and maybe that new promo or expansion... if it's not too foggy.

Let us know when you're attending, and if you'd like to say hello!

We're meeting upstairs in the front foyer of the Messe at 2pm on Thursday and at 2pm on Saturday.
We'll likely be watching potions of the tournament held on Sunday.

One of the biggest benefits of making friends on forums is having someone to play games with.  It's been pretty tricky over the past few years, and although playing online has it's advantages, for me it's certainly not nearly as fun.  Another advantage is having someone to share the burden of shipping costs; dividing up the expense can sometimes make those hard to acquire things a little easier to bear.  Over the past year or so a few of us on the forum had started to collect a... mass of things for each other.  So we scheduled some time to meetup... and play some games.

Last Saturday, Dan, RichTheFish, Willem, and I decided it was time to meet up in the D20 Cafe in Watford, and UncleWills (+ Jr) joined us too!  It's a place we visited a few years ago, and although they take a while to serve biscuits, they were pretty quick delivering us some burgers.

It's tradition to play Carcassonne at a Carcassonne meetup.  So we started with something that Dan brought along, thanks to WallacePrime!

That's right....Cubeassonne (I hope I spelled that correctly).
We played with the, play the side the thumb was on after you draw it out the bag.

I really enjoyed playing this, and it's a brilliant idea. Thanks a lot Chris!  I would say that by only using the base tile configurations there's a very big incentive to trap other players.  There's almost more chance.  But I enjoy the fair way that tile counting is removed from the game.

Farms still saw a major swing for Dan, and although I made a crude attempt to join the party, Dan edged a comfortable lead:

Next up was a short game while we waited for lunch.  I think it's called Robin.  This is probably the least interesting photograph I could take of the game... it's of the empty board:

This was an interesting set collection game, where players have to auction their cards to perform actions.  The cards are also the suites you want to complete your sets, so you're moving up and down the track to draw more cards, or pull cards from the discard.  I'd not played it before but I'd happily play it again in the hope of developing some tactics.  Dan won this one about 3 rounds before he noticed :D

Next up was Snowdonia:
I've played many times on Yucata with Rich The Fish, and a few times with Dan, but it was the first time Willem had played.

This is becoming one of my favourite games. I love how the sequence of actions influence other players, and how the game always seems to offer you good paths to take, but you're always just a few actions away.  I also really like how the Contract cards guide players to their end games while also providing important boosts.

I especially like this game because it's set in Wales; and at least this time I was able to stop Dan's winning streak and claim my first victory of the day, by one point!

Next we played Pathways.  The game created my our forum's very own Franks.  We were lucky enough to receive a prototype copy of this dexterity-strategy game:

We played as teams, and there's a lot of fun to be had—plenty of lucky shots, and plenty of tactical plays, surprisingly few table nudges, but in the end RichTheFish and I are UK national team champions:

Pathways offers some variations that are played on a mat too:

I'll be writing up a little more about this v.soon!

Next up was Quacks of Quedlinburg. I've played this once before, and Rich is somewhat of a pro, we played with his copy.

Willem took an early lead, and managed to keep it convincingly.  I went bust early on, and incapable of moving my start token round the soup bowl.  I had a incredible amount of unluck drawing white token after white token.....

It's a fun game, push-your-luck is always a neat mechanism, even if you don't have any to start with.  I also like the rat tail catchup mechanism; I think it can give a necessary boost to help players who were lagging behind.

Congrats Potion Master Willem:

With only a few minutes to go we played Carcassonne Wheel of Fortune. Which Rich hadn't played before:

My luck came back here as I earned a lot of early points for simply doing not very much.  An early farmer helped me maintain control of a central farm, and although Dan took the majority, I was able to sneak back on with my last move (also denying Willem 6 points) because I used a curved bridge to connect a road:

To be honest, I always find WoF far too random.  Giving points left right and centre to players for little to no good tactical play.  Similarly some players are struck with negative results too.  Also the wheel becomes totally useless after all the wheel tokens are used up which is something that few people can be bothered to count.  So you're left wondering if those last people on the wheel will have been worth it.  On the plus side the tile configurations and additional tiles are nice and make for a good game with 4 players.

So that was it!

Here we all are:

Another grand day out in London.  It was great catching up with everyone!

Most importantly however, the crew was kind enough to venture across Watford to find a Fish and Chip Shop that sold Rock Fish.
Which is something that just isn't available in the South Wales region.
Thanks so much!

This closes off the report of the GBRBGWEGB -
The Great, British Rock and Board Game Week End Great Britain

News and Events / Mists over Carcassonne
« on: February 24, 2022, 03:34:49 AM »
News post today about the new expansion / spin-off for Carcassonne

Dense fog covers the meadows of Carcassonne, swallows up entire farmsteads and creeps up to the city walls. Even the bravest of knights tremble and their armor clatter when they hear the monks' tale: "The mist brings forth the souls of the Cathars, hunted during the Crusades. They come back for justice!"

With this spooky story we delve into the theme of the new game in the popular Carcassonne series, Fog over Carcassonne. The game, which is scheduled to be released in the fourth quarter of 2022, has several special features: on the one hand, it is a completely independent game that introduces a cooperative mode in Carcassonne for the first time, on the other hand, all the material can be transferred to the huge integrated into the Carcassonne world and can also be used as an extension.

Fog over Carcassonne as of Feb 2022
In cooperative mode, you will join forces and appease the spirits together. To save everyone, you must contain the spread of the mist and the ghosts within, contain the haunted earth in the cemeteries, and use the spooky haunted castles to your advantage. The game is played according to the well-known rules of Carcassonne in terms of placing tiles and collecting points. But for the first time, everyone must work together to keep as few ghosts from appearing as possible and survive three days. If too many ghosts have appeared or the days have passed before enough points have been collected, you will lose the game together.
Can you save Carcassonne together?

- A total of 45 meeples in two new forms
- 60 Carcassonne tiles (compatible with all other Carcassonne versions)
- some other special parts
- different levels of difficulty

The author of the new game is Klaus-Jürgen Wrede, who also created the original game and a variety of expansions for the extensive Carcassonne world.
With “Nebel über Carcassonne” we are now breaking new ground that will delight fans and new players alike.

Of course, we will also announce details about the functions as an extension in the course of the year.

News and Events / ZAMEK – DODATEK SOKÓŁ (The Castle: Falcon Expansion)
« on: February 09, 2022, 07:20:59 AM »
The Expansion for the Polish edition of Carcassonne: The Falcon will be available in April!


General / I'm scared to go to Carcassonne because....
« on: February 03, 2022, 06:01:07 AM »
Finish the sentence:

I'm scared to go to Carcassonne because.....

News and Events / An Interview with Board Game Arena
« on: February 01, 2022, 02:27:02 AM »
I doubt that many of you need an introduction to the online board game system Board Game Area (or BGA).
The site was founded in mid-2010 (in French only), and has now grown to host over 430 different games, support 45 languages; and the almost 7.6 million users play over 100 thousand games each day.

Here on Carcassonne Central, most of us come across Board Game Arena when looking for a popular implementation of Carcassonne.
I reached out to their team with some questions I thought we’d all like to know the answers to.

I was extremely happy and surprised to have a response in a matter of days (hours really) from Ian Parovel who is the Art Director (UI/UX & P.R) at BGA.
He had also shared the questions with Grégory Isabelli the CEO and founder of Board Game Arena.

Below are some extracts from my exchange, I hope you enjoy them:


Initially, I wanted to find out more about what it means to support Carcassonne on the platform; what sort of development effort does it take, and what considerations do Board Game Area have to consider to keep Carcassonne operational.

What are your other top performing games, and how do they compare?
Ian: For now Carcassonne is still in the top 3 and has been for years.
But as we add new games, the top 10 list is ever changing. 7 Wonders is still doing very well. Azul and Splendor, while released recently, are doing very well and have a good audience, and 6 Nimmt has always been a favorite of our users.
Unfortunately we cannot share the exact numbers, due to publisher-side non-disclosure agreements.

When you started BGA, which games did you prioritize?

Greg and Ian : We are gamers, so we prioritized the games we liked :)
However, to add a game on BGA, we need to get the proper authorization from its publisher, and this was not easy since we knew nobody in the game industry.
Fortunately, some extraordinary publishers gave us the chance to work on excellent games despite being a niche website.

How long Carcassonne has been on BGA and how long did the implementation take?

Greg : Carcassonne has been online on BGA since 2016.
It is difficult to say how long the implementation took because we worked on it several times, improving it and adding some expansions.
Usually developing a game on BGA is a 2 months job so I would say 2 months in total.
Have you ever had to resolve some weird bugs?

Ian : BGA is based on the most popular platform there is : web browsers.
Unfortunately, we have to keep things updated at all times, and weird bugs happen pretty often.
Fortunately, our bug tracker can help us keep a look at them 100% of the time, and most of the issues are identified and cleared in less than 24h.
Once we release a game, we make sure it would be bug-proof for a long period of time, but sometimes it happens that a feature needs some more work.
That's also why we release them, in most cases, in Alpha first, then in Beta for a group of qualified game testers, then to Gold.

With the rise in mobile phones supporting web-browser standards, it has meant that players can seamlessly switch between desktop and mobile during a game.
Carcassonne works very well on mobile browsers, but be careful placing your meeples!

Greg : For Carcassonne specifically, the most difficult bugs concerned the fields, since fields may be quite big and their limit should be very accurate.
If you mess up with a single tile, you can split a field in two or extend it while it should not.

Interestingly for those that don’t know, Board Game Arena’s implementation of Carcassonne supports the current (3rd) edition farmer scoring and a first edition style that scores 3-points per city (first edition scored 4-points); as well as the first-edition 2-points for a small city.  This must make the calculations for fields and majorities even more complex.
Is Carcassonne computationally expensive compared to other games, in terms of CPU or storage?

Greg : Board games in general are not CPU intensive because they are intended to be played by humans.
Once loaded, the games mostly require bandwidth to link exchanges and movements between players. But that's mostly it.

Ian : The game itself is not bigger or smaller than others.
The main resource it consumes is storage for replays.
And there's Terabytes of them. (popularity is a critical game-changer here)

I suspect server capacity is always an issue for you, especially when the pandemic first started. What approaches or technologies do you use to maintain good service?

Greg : We are using pretty common technologies for the web, using server redundancy to increase reliability and scalability.
Our approach over the years has been to learn from our mistakes: if it happens that the service crashes, we put in all our effort to make sure it does not crash twice for the same reason.
Whatever the projects we have in progress, stability is our main priority.

Ian : The pandemic was a surprise for us, and we managed to handle the traffic in a few days.
This case never happened before and now we're prepared to face pretty much any event.
We do a lot of daily checks, but like any service, things could happen.

Next, I wanted to find out a little bit more about the types of Carcassonne tournaments that are played on Board Game Area. So I asked DanisThirty for some more information about some of the tournament's he's played in. Here are a few:

WTCOC 2020
As far as I'm aware, this was the first time an online teams competition had been run for Carcassonne so it was new territory for everyone.
Of the 21 teams that took part, Japan beat Russia in the final with Germany and Romania making up the top 4.

MSO 2020
When COVID-19 prevented a physical UK Games Expo from taking place as usual, the UKGE went online and allowed a number of national board game championships (including Carcassonne) to be combined with MSO's annual board game championships that were being held online using BGA.
As a result, the 2020 UK Carcassonne Championships were contested by a field of over 100 players from all over the world, and were won by a Portuguese player who declined the opportunity to represent the UK at the next world championships after finishing 2nd in the Portuguese national championship the following year.
The place was offered to the Romanian runner-up instead, who joined his brother (the former world champion) and three other players from Romania at the 2021 world championships.

ETCOC 2020
Following on from the success of the World Team Championships, the European Team Championships attracted 14 teams from across the continent.
The UK got as far as the semi-final before losing to Germany who went on to beat Russia in the final.

WTCOC 2021
The World and European team events of 2020 were a huge highlight for many Carcassonne players in the absence of an official world championship, so it was no surprise to see a record number of teams in the 2021 World Team Championships.
Of the 29 teams that took part, Japan retained their title from the previous year; thus ensuring a third set of silver medals for the Russian team.

MSO 2021
The MSO held their annual "Pentamind" competition online again using BGA, but this time as an independent event without being affiliated with the UKGE which has been held earlier in the year as a physical event with in-person national championships.
The MSO's Carcassonne championship was won by Alexey Pegushev of Latvia and UK.

ETCOC 2021
22 teams from Europe competed against each other in another thrilling teams competition that saw the Russians finally claim their first online teams title.

As well as these events, there are weekly knockout and "single-elimination" events organized by our forum member Leven.
There are also Swiss-style tournaments that all players are welcome to join.
Dozens of other events are created each week using a variety of formats.

BGA has become the preferred platform for tournament play, seeing the Japanese, UK, and Spanish national teams selected using your platform.
Do you know how many tournaments are run?

Ian : Plenty. It is difficult to give a significant number because you have really small tournaments with only few players and large tournaments with many players.
From the famous ones hosted by Mind Sports Olympiad, Youtubers, officials... with close to 300 000 tables created monthly, that's something that's for sure, pretty famous.

How many games are part of tournaments?

Greg : We might be close to 10% of overall games that are tournaments.
From small 4 players tournaments to thousands of players, that's something a bit complicated to calculate exactly.

Are there additional features that you plan to implement to help tournament play, such as a turn-timer, like chess-clocks?

Ian : It's already in ;) And not only for tournaments: for all games on BGA you have a timer to make sure your opponents play on time, depending on the settings you've chosen.
From realtime to turn-based types, there are options to suit your available time to play  ;)
To wrap up, I wanted to find out a little bit more about the types of games that are played on the platform and the sheer scale of Carcassonne games played.

Would you be able to answer the following statistical questions:
How many games of Carcassonne have been played on the platform?

Greg : Around 5.2 Millions and counting.
I wonder how games have been played with the real box since the initial release?

Ian : Probably more than you think, as it's my favorite game.

Greg : So maybe millions too :)

(The previous edition stated that 12 million copies have been sold. So I hope at least half of them got played  ;) )

What has been the most number of Carcassonne games in a day?

Greg : Around 14000.

What has been the most number of concurrent Carcassonne games being played at once?

Ian : That's close to impossible to say, as the number is changing every second.
But as we speak, 27th January 2022, 3:14PM we have more than 4500 games in progress, realtime or turn based.

(And at 31st January 2022, 10PM there are 5500!)

How does the spin-off Hunters and Gatherers compare in terms of active players and games played?

Greg : Pretty good actually compared to most games on BGA, but obviously way less than the base game.

(And at 31st January 2022, 10PM there are about 330 active games)
Looking across all the games of Carcassonne played, what is the most popular player count?

Greg : The real deal seems to be 2 players. But playing digitally is way different than what you're looking for IRL. Two players is the favorite setting players are looking for. By far.
Is it possible to see the number of active games, or players, on a monthly basis, since the game was implemented?

Ian : Unfortunately, it's not our role to share such information, as they're all up to board game publishers' will.

What is the highest score achieved in a Carcassonne game?

Ian : That's also something we cannot extract with valuable information to answer your question, and it would require a lot of work.
Should we take into account games where users are only testing the game?
And what about games played between friends just to try to exploit the game scoring system?
Not all games are played in a way we can extract this information with certainty.
But you can have a look at the biggest tournament games results on Board Game Arena to have an idea of how high some users can get ;)
Are you able to compare top-ranked players' ability to score points against lower ranked players?

Greg : As Ian said, that would be possible, but will require a lot of analysis work on our side to extract this exact information. But I'm quite intrigued, too.

I decided to wrap up with some questions about where they saw the future of digital gaming.

Where do you see the future of Carcassonne on the BGA platform?

Greg : We like this game particularly, and would like to see as many expansions as possible on BGA.
This game is particularly good on large screens, and BGA allows you to take advantage of this, so we know that players are particularly attached to this online adaptation, and we want to satisfy them :)
I think the advantages of digital board gaming are well known, but I would like to ask you which you think are the most important aspects?

Greg and Ian : Our approach at BGA is to consider that we are only making adaptations of (great) board games, and not some kind of video games.
Our goal is to provide an experience as close as possible to the real games.
Thus, our main focus is to provide you with real, human opponents, anytime.
So I would say that the major advantage is this one: being able to play any board game, any time.
Also do you see any unexpected trends that occur due to digital implementations? As an example, I think I've seen some strategic games have effectively been 'solved' because a large number of good players are able to quickly and concurrently test their tactics.  Do you think this has, or will ever happen, to Carcassonne?

Greg : This may happen for some really simple games, but for the vast majority of games this does not happen, and certainly not for Carcassonne.

Ian : It all depends on game richness and complexity.
Solved games are mostly the ones giving "fixed information".
But will it be possible to "solve" a game with some randomized components? I don't know.
But there's plenty of useful information for publishers and game designers to learn from them.


I found the answers to these questions very interesting.  I think what comes across is how important physical gaming is to Ian and Greg, as well as their huge enthusiasm.  I really appreciate that they could take the time to answer these questions and give us a little insight in how everything works over on Board Game Arena.  I'm sure you would like to extend that thanks too.  Perhaps having read this you have some other questions you would like to ask them?  Please let me know!

If you're interested in opening an account on Board Game Arena, you can go to and Register.
To join games and start playing Carcassonne that is all you need to do.  If you wish to host games, you have to be a premium member. Currently premium membership is $24 a year, which I think is extremely reasonable considering I paid 25€ for a copy of Carcassonne v3 last week, and this gives me access to the library of over 430 games and I can start as many as I like.
Board Game Arena does offer a referral scheme, so if you are creating an account, I'd appreciate the tiny bit of support: Decar's registration referral link, but feel free to ignore this  :D

I hope you enjoyed reading about Board Game Arena, I hope to see you other there.

General / Where were you in 2012?
« on: January 31, 2022, 01:50:35 AM »
Ten years ago was a long time ago. For many it was a significant year.  Many believe that Nostradamus thought the world would approach destruction, and any Mayan's still using their calendar would suffer from an equivalent Millennium Bug because no one added some more pages.

In 2012, I married my now wife, bought a house, and we 'rescued' our dog.  So all in all an excellent and significant year.
I also started using Kickstarter, which rekindled my love of board games, which ultimately made me end up here.

What happened in your 2012?

General / A complete (?) Carcassonne version history
« on: January 15, 2022, 02:34:20 PM »
Hi everyone, I've been a little busy fraternizing with another forum.  Some of you may have seen it already.

A lot of people have been asking, what's the difference between various versions and boxes of the Carcassonne base game.
So I thought it was about time produce a little guide to help people either coming into the world of Carcassonne, or maybe not so familiar with all the changes that are hard to track here.
Primarily, I don't like to see people disappointed, so I think it helping people to understand what they have, or what they intend to buy is a beneficial thing to have. Hence why I thought hosting on BGG was a good idea. I also thought it was worth mentioning some of the more unusual things from around the globe too.... and as with anything Carcassonne, next thing you know it's worth mentioning something else tangentially related.  So it soon became an even greater task, and Willem (and his Museum of Carcassonne) quickly came on board to help, the majority of the images are from his very very very extensive collection. Danisthirty also took a couple of good ones too.

It was a really fun exercise to do, and I learned of a few things I wasn't aware of, and often chronology gets lost in the haze of time. Big big thank you to Willem for his meticulous archival process.
I'll be bringing the information over here in the coming days, but if you can't wait you can read it on BGG—A complete Carcassonne version history.
If you're a member of BGG please give it a thumb, I also accept Carcassonne Central merits  ;D

General / Help from Hong Kong
« on: January 02, 2022, 02:13:25 AM »
This is a bit of an odd request, but thought I'd give my #1 online community a try.

I'd like to order something from Hong Kong, but it's only available to people living in the region.  (It's not Carcassonne related).

Does anyone live in Hong Kong and be willing to help order the item to their address and have it forwarded to the UK?

Many thanks!

News and Events / Merry Crimbo 2021
« on: December 24, 2021, 12:57:44 PM »
I'd just like to wish (and not one I'd regret hopefully) everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Over the next year, may your Carcassonne collections approach completion. May the tiles always draw in your favour. May friendships prosper across the globe, and in traditional British verse I wish you pockets full of money, and a cellar full of beer.

Other Games / Fire & Stone
« on: July 24, 2021, 06:07:14 AM »
Just a heads up for those who follow Klaus-Jürgen Wrede's other games:

In Fire & Stone, players lead their tribe through the Stone Age. They scout new lands, harvest nuts and mushrooms, and finally build villages. The aim of the game is to have the most successful tribe by exploring new lands, building huts, and gathering resources. With the invention of new tools and techniques like ship building or pottery, the expansion of your tribe can even be accelerated.

Each space the scouts can enter contains upside-down discover tokens. When a scout moves on one of those tokens for the first time, the token is revealed and triggers an effect. From now on these tokens can be used as a player action with a different effect. By the end of the game, the player who made the most victory points with villages and accomplishing tasks wins.

Coming from Pegasus Spiel later this year. Essen perhaps?

Anything Else / Be careful what you wish for...
« on: June 01, 2021, 01:03:19 PM »
One of the great things about Carcassonne Central is the community, and how people from all across the globe all seem to have fallen in love with 45mm square tiles that depict the South of France (Don't mention halflings).

So, while this is off-topic, I thought it would be a fun little game to play.

The game starts by making a wish, and the next person replies granting their wish, but reminding them of the impact of their desires, before making their own wish.
It's a faux pas to forget to make a wish, but someone else can start the thread off again.

For example:

> I wish I did not have to work.

>Granted. But the world is now overrun by an evil synthetic intelligence that perceives all humans as a threat to its existence.  You have to fight to survive.
> I wish ...

So I'll start:

I wish I claimed that cloister

General / Pre-orders for Carcassonne 20th Anniversary UK
« on: April 08, 2021, 02:25:01 AM »
As I'm always looking for the opportunity of a merit,
I've collected a few pre-order URLs for Carcassonne 20th Anniversary edition in the United Kingdom.

In no particular order.

Boardgameguru - £40 + £3.75 postage

Zatu - £43 + £3 postage... buy 5 for 5% off etc [I've had terrible service in the past, and Rich The Fish reports bad preorder handling]

Board game hut - £46 + free postage

ChaosCards - £50 + free post

Thirsty Meeples - £41 + £4 shipping (free over £50)

Tritex Games - £40 + £4 postage (free over £50)

Boardgameextras - £42 + £3.50 postage

GamesLore - £40 - £3.0/4.29 postage  (up to 10% discount on larger orders)

Titan Games - £40 + £2.99 postage

MeeplesCorner - $41.95 + £4.99 postage

Rules of Play - £45 + free postage (OR £40.50 with GEN-BGPRICES) code.

Dice and Destiny - £41.99 + £3 postage

My general personal experience:
GamesLore have been reliable when I've used them in the past and probably the cheapest if you're considering multiple copies, perhaps in a bulk order.
If you order 3 or more GamesLore works out cheapest currently at around £40 per copy. If you order 7 it drops to around £37

BoardgameExtras is always really reliable, so the extra couple of quid is well spent imho.

Zatu has terrible customer service

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