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Messages - kothmann

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The Marketplace / Re: WTS Carcassonne: Cult, Siege & Creativity [UK]
« on: November 29, 2022, 04:13:04 AM »
Welcome to the Forum @danptg.

There are 9 listings on BGG going for about $50-100.  Probably include the box.

General / Goldmines with Magic Portals?
« on: November 28, 2022, 08:09:52 PM »
Does anyone play Goldmines mini with Magic Portals?  Since I never play the full Expansion#3, I have separated the 6 Magic Portals as their own expansion.  I thought they might be really useful with Wheel of Fortune (after the plague), but it seems like the abandoned features are usually roads or small cities, which are easily reoccupied, so the portals are almost never used.

But while playing recently, I noticed that the 4 monasteries on the Goldmine tiles are often unoccupied because the player wants to make a quick grab of the gold bars by completing a road or city on the tile.  So it seems like a great opportunity to include the Magic Portals.   >:D

Just curious if anyone else has combined these elements and how it worked out.  Thanks!

Unofficial Rules / Re: Center Scoreboards with River Bonus Features
« on: November 28, 2022, 01:36:21 PM »
Life is fun when you make up house rules!
Indeed!  >:D

Unofficial Rules / Re: Center Scoreboards with River Bonus Features
« on: November 28, 2022, 09:53:13 AM »
Aha!  Players are constrained to place meeples on river tiles until the river is (randomly) completed, at which time it will be possible to start claiming the bonuses, making this more fair in 4-player games than placing the bonuses during the game.  This also should help to cluster meeples around the (large) scoreboard start tile, promoting player interaction, which is one reason I tend not to love the River or the various large start tiles.  Very nice!

I was not following the Bards thread, so I'm also grateful for this simply summary of the concept.  Interesting.

+1 merit from me for this simple and clever variant!

Today, my partner and I played a couple games using every expansion I have that does not add any landscape tiles!

Overall, I really liked this combination, as it adds a lot of mechanical complexity (which I like) without really adding too much to the game time.
Thanks for sharing this.  Sounds like a lot of fun!   :D

Perhaps you would be interested in my Old City expansion, which was created with a similar motivation in mind.

General / Re: Does Anyone Play with Shrines?
« on: November 07, 2022, 09:14:08 AM »
Maybe add these thoughts to the earlier Mayor-is-useless thread?

General / Re: Does Anyone Play with Shrines?
« on: October 24, 2022, 01:56:43 PM »
What an epic post! +1 merit from me!  This is a fantastic reference with a ton of useful information.

However, overall the total amount of points contained in cloisters is the lowest in the base game…
This is interesting.  But I would say that the importance of scoring elements of a game is often not well measured by the total number of points that they offer.  For example, in basketball, only 20% of points come from free throws, compared to about 40% each from 2-point and 3-point field goals.  But I don’t think most fans believe basketball would be a better game if free throws were worth more points.  Fouls introduce very important balance, tactics and strategy.  I think the same is true of cloisters.

Nesting multiple cloisters next to each other like many players like to do is practically begging your opponent to trap them all with a single tile placement.
Yes, adjacent cloisters have higher risk but also offer larger reward!  18 points for a total of only 12 tiles, often placed by opponents!  In a 2017 interview, KJW himself said (emphasis added):
I don’t like building cloistures buildings adjacent. Sometimes it happens, because it is stronger then. We didn’t want more rules which make expections etc, but I would play it at home with this rule.

…(players) can lead other features such as roads or cities into this gap leaving even more meeples stranded on the board until the end of the game!
I agree with this.  I am always disappointed with myself when I fall into this trap.

Thanks again for such a detailed and interesting reply.  This has motivated me to experiment more with cloister house rules…

General / Re: Tile size travel, demo, for 2 editions
« on: October 20, 2022, 09:19:59 AM »
I measured Carc-for-2 with a US caliper:
About 1.370 inches (34.8mm).

The tiles seemed to be consistently about 0.006” more than this is one direction — that is, slightly rectangular.


General / Re: Does Anyone Play with Shrines?
« on: October 17, 2022, 01:00:26 PM »
Thanks for the reply @DIN0–wow I really hit a nerve!

cloisters are the weakest and most risky feature of the original game…
I agree they are often over-valued, but maybe they aren’t quite this bad?  I am usually delighted to draw a cloister early, when it will be surrounded quickly because there is nowhere else to play.  And who doesn’t love a late cloister that finally fills a gap in the landscape, sometimes even completing when the tile is placed!

In a base-game-only contest, typical winning score is probably between 70 and 80, with 7 meeples, so even a monk that generates 8 points while stuck the whole game isn’t that far from the average of 10 per meeple?  By comparison, a failed invasion of a farm can often yield a meeple that scores only 3 points or sometimes zero, though admittedly the upside potential is usually a lot higher.

Maybe the problem arises because most people throw in a couple of expansions and end up with 100, 120, or 150 tiles, with a similar increase in winning score, so in that case a stuck meeple is indeed a catastrophe?  I’ve notice that in small “Carc for 2” games with my wife, it feels like cloisters do indeed often tip the balance.

It was way overdue when HiG finally decided to throw cloisters a bone.
The Abbott?  I can’t bring myself to use it, and not just because C1 doesn’t have gardens.  Just seems like the tactics are trivial and not interesting.

I usually don't play with rules for the Cults, just with the tiles…
No variant rules?  Lots of possibilities…

I think I only experienced one (1) challenge between a monastery and a shrine since I've started playing the game.
Thanks for the data point—very helpful.  Full disclosure: I don’t actually own Shrines, I was just experimenting with those rules as variants for the volcano tiles since I don’t play official dragon rules either.  But I’ve given up on that now and back to searching for volcano alternatives…

General / Does Anyone Play with Shrines?
« on: October 12, 2022, 12:05:15 PM »
I have been experimenting with the official rules for Shrines, and found that they are rarely interesting and often cumbersome.  Most of the time, a player who would be initiating a challenge will have fewer surrounding tiles at the moment the tile is placed, so will be at a disadvantage, and thus decide not to challenge.  Or the challenge ends in a boring tie.  The result is that the rules mostly just restrict placement of tiles.  These are not new observations, and the problems seem to contribute to an overall low ranking for Count, King, and Robber.

I have been searching for variants, but not found much, save one interesting (as usual) idea from @Leven that makes use of the Cemetery expansion.

So, I guess I'm wondering if anyone has a different point of view about official rules for Shrines, or can suggest a variant that is worth a try.


Reviews & Session Reports / Re: First game of (kinda) Mega Carcassonne
« on: October 10, 2022, 09:30:37 AM »
Amazing report! Thanks so much for sharing!

One of the biggiest cities I've ever seen:
...I was baffled. But then...
did it again, like, only a couple of hours later:
So in both cases, it looks like the Cathedral at the bottom of the city was played in defense (trying to prevent pink from closing the city), because the surrounding tiles are otherwise disconnected from the landscape.  Or was pink just greedy?  Did Green go all-out to block it?

Looking over the final landscape, it looks like I see 3 Abbeys near the center of the board: were they already used up by the time these monster cities happened?  Are your games "mean" (lots of blocking / trapping)?

...the only case where the equivalent house rule was applied on a road:
This road was worth 9 points
as @Bumsakalaka pointed out, that Inn doesn't technically apply to the 3-tile road, but in general not surprising that monster roads are less likely.  Particularly with lots of T&B tiles.

Pink got those two giant cities but in the end they were voided by the giant barned green field.
Did Pink not place their barn?!  What happened?  I'm curious about the distribution of farm sizes?  Smart to use only 6 bridges in a game with 500+ tiles: we sometimes use 12 bridges in a game with only 150 tiles, and the fields tend to be...large.

In the end it was a lot of fun
Sure looks like it!  Another +1 merit from me!

Reviews & Session Reports / Re: First game of (kinda) Mega Carcassonne
« on: October 08, 2022, 01:25:47 PM »
Great photo!

I’m interested in farm tactics: are both players trying to play farmer + pig and then join then Green barn (for 12 points as it now has 6 cities)?  Pink has two great farms (both have 7 cities): are they racing to lock those down?  Only 1 other Green farmer?

Any other interesting tactics?

Looking forward to more photos…

Have fun!

General / Re: Do you use house rules?
« on: October 06, 2022, 07:56:54 PM »
…you get < 0.01. That's still a very small probability…. It was the “minor deviation” I wanted to defend when the nerd mode turned on.

Defense successful!

Seriously it was an interesting reply!  Thanks.  :)

General / Re: Do you use house rules?
« on: October 06, 2022, 04:09:50 PM »
Caution!!! Nerd mode on! Scientist at work!  >:D ;)
+1 merit for nerd mode.  But I want to quarrel with some assumptions…

It's easy to see that it's more difficult to achieve this 22-pennant feat as the number of players increases.
In a multi-player game, “conspiracy” is how you win!  This is the magic of multi-player Carcassonne!  In particular, in a 7-player game, two players would likely be happy to join two giant pennant-filled cities in order to make the game effectively a 2-player game from then on.

your opponent does not help you build your monster city with a fragment containing pennants, ever. (Fair assumption, eh?)
No.  Even in a 2-player game, with I&C, you might gladly place a CCRR tile with a pennant in a way that adds to an opponent’s big city if: that city is not close to complete and contains a Cathedral; the road connects your single Inn to a long road on which you and your opponent both have one meeple (thus completing the road and scoring you all the points at 2/tile); and/or the tile connects farms in a way that is advantageous to you.  More simply, you might repeatedly add CCCF and CCCR tiles with pennants to a city with a Cathedral if the opponent gets close to completing it.

I think the overall conclusion of the math is definitely right, but the actual number isn’t very important.

This division is surely purely arbitrary.
Yes!  Who cares if it is a minor deviation!?  The only important question is whether it is more fun for your game.  The answer is obviously yes, so this is a great house rule!

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