Carcassonne Central

Carc Central Community => News and Events => Topic started by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 03:47:49 AM

Title: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 03:47:49 AM
Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014

Hello and welcome to this, the first edition of Carcassonne Central News.

Not sure what this is or why you'd want to read it? Well, there's a quick recap of all the latest news and hot discussions that have been taking place across the forums over the last month (in case you missed anything), some strategic advice for you to bear in mind the next time you play Carcassonne, a brief insight into some of the brave heroics that go on behind the scenes of the forums you know and love, a specially selected video of a game of Carcassonne that will make you laugh/ cry/ other, a classic CKT to T your K of C, some genuinely amazing art and even a special homework assignment to keep you busy until next time!

Sounds good? It is! But first this...

Under Starter's Orders
Can't decide which player should go first? Tired of letting the youngest/ oldest/ fattest/ thinnest/ baldest/ most violent player start? Next time you play, take one meeple from each player, shake them all together in your hands and choose another player to close their eyes and pick one of the meeples at random. The player that owns the chosen meeple goes first and play continues in a clockwise direction. Now you can waste your time arguing over who gets to pick the starting meeple instead...

If you have an alternative method of choosing the start player that you'd like to share with the rest of the community, please let us know!

Forum News
News and Events\ New Big Box in the Netherlands
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Big News; Big Box 5 has now been released (in some countries) and it looks like the best one yet! Check out this thread to see what's included and then have a serious think about how you're going to justify the purchase of this much-needed set to your loved ones!

News and Events\ Carcassonne - 9th expansion: Schafe und Huegel (Sheep and Hills): (now with over 10,000 views!)
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Now that Z-Man games have released Sheep and Hills/ Hills and Sheep – Carcassonne's 9th official "big" expansion – to the English-speaking world, the debate over how to play it in combination with various other expansions has very much come to life once again. So if you have any questions regarding this expansion, you're sure to find an answer here.

News and Events\ Carcassonne Spin-Off - Around the World #2
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The next Carcassonne "Around the World" spin-off game is on its way! Get a sneak-peek at what's to come, and try to come up with a suitable (German) name for it for a chance of winning a copy of the game while you're there!

Reviews & Session Reports\ Four-player game
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Have you heard of a game called "Carcassonne"? Fortunately Scott had, and this is his write-up of a couple of games he played with some family members and a friend recently.

CarcCentral Carcassonne League\ Carcassonne World Cup!
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20 players from 15 different countries will start. 12 players will be knocked-out at the group stage, 4 players will be knocked-out in the quarter-finals, 2 players will be knocked-out in the semi-finals, 1 player will be knocked-out in the final and 1 player will be the champion! Keep it Carcassonne Central to find out whose journey stops where...

The Workshop\ Expansion Workshop\ Horses
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If you've ever felt like there aren't enough horses in Carcassonne then this could be the expansion for you. Horse tiles are mixed in with the other tiles at the start of the game and when drawn, horse herds can be claimed and scored depending on their proximity to the nearest barn. A great concept well explained and delivered by new member frankdux.

General\ 10000 POST
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Just enough time for a quick joke before moving on I think: what's the difference between a forum with over 10,000 posts and this one? Nothing! That's right, earlier this week the Carcassonne Central forums received post number 10,000 meaning we're now over halfway towards 20,000 posts or a quarter of the way to 40,000 posts (expand as appropriate). Thanks everyone, and congratulations on reaching this cool milestone!

Carcassonne Player's Guide #1: Being Kind To Be Cruel
Simply put, winning at Carcassonne is about making sure you have more points than your opponent(s). Generating as many points as possible for yourself is the obvious way of going about this, but sometimes it can be easier to build a winning lead by reducing the number of points that your opponent will receive when the final scores are calculated. One way in particular that this can be achieved is by merging your opponent's farms. Obviously this will increase his majority of farmers on the farm in question but if it's not something you're competing for, this shouldn't matter and you can easily knock 3, 6, 9 or more points off of his final total. In a close head-to-head game this could be enough to make all the difference.

Consider the following scenario. You're blue and all of your meeples are in play. You're placing the final tile of the game which is a straight bit of road. Part of the playing area is shown below:


The obvious choice seems to be to extend your own road northwards as this will also score an additional point for the adjacent cloister (+2 points for blue):


However, on this occasion it's actually better to give a point away to red by extending his road:


Even though it extends red's road, adding the tile here will make his second farm worthless and the 3 most northerly cities will now be scored once rather than twice (+1 point for road, -9 points for second farmer = -8 points for red).

So there we have it. You can take the 2 points for the road/ cloister and lose 9 points to your opponent's second farm meaning you end up 7 points behind based on the scoring of these features. Or you can leave the two easy points, give your opponent a point but rob him of 9 in the process meaning you end up 8 points ahead!

Member of the Month
Carcassonne Central's Member of the Month for July 2014 is: Yellow

For many centuries, a dark and mysterious creature has plagued these forums with a vicious intolerance of foreign language (and even some more conventional characters if it didn't like the way they looked). Posts have been truncated, usernames have been compromised; dreams have been shattered. Yet despite years of disruption, the monster remained safely hidden away in a maze of extraordinarily confusing administration menus and options. Hope was lost... or so it seemed!

As ancient legends had foretold, a yellow warrior was chosen to stand up for Carcassonne Central and all those who loved it. Bravely he ventured into the labyrinth of settings with nothing other than his deviousness, cunning wit and trusty Sword of Unicode for protection. He located the foul beast without hesitation and slayed it, bringing an immediate end to all the terror and havoc that it had caused. Though at first it seemed too good to be true, subsequent sacrifices were left untouched and soon afterwards it was written into local folklore that the notorious Umlaut Monster was gone for good.

Fantastic work Yellow! You've won a much-coveted Carcassonne Central Member of the Month tile to help you on your way towards 10,000 tiles; every little helps...

Video Library: A Lesson in Losing Your Farm (and failing [miserably] to get it back)
This video is of the second game of the round 4 clash between danisthirty (purple) and MrNumbers (red) in the 2014 Carcassonne Central League. Having broken MrNumber's unbeaten run of six consecutive games, danisthirty had one game in hand and so was playing to win the match whereas MrNumbers wasn't keen to settle on anything less than a draw... ( (6m 24s)

(the battle for the farm gets increasingly desperate from 3m 40s onwards)

Carcassonne Knowledge Tester (CKT) #1: Score the Farm
Think you've got what it takes to become a Mega-Carcassonne referee? This section of the newsletter is designed to test your knowledge of the rules for some of the many official expansions that exist for Carcassonne and how they work together.

We'll start off with an easy one though; how many points will blue win for the farm shown below?


I've spent most of the last 2 years completely lost in Carcassonne (the game rather than the place; if it was the place I'd hope someone would have helped me to find the way out by now) so this fantastic landscape developed by Yellow (originally post: ( proved too good not to show again here. Obligatory awful pun alert: "it's a-maze-ing"!

See if you can find your way to the shrine in the middle from the cloister in the bottom right (roads continue through junctions that would normally complete them):


Well done for reading this despite the title! Unlike most homework though, you'll be glad to know that this homework is optional and there will be no detentions for getting it wrong. If however this newsletter has left you in need of a bit of "food for thought" before next month's edition, it'd be interesting to know what the maximum score is for a single completed city using just the basic 72 Carcassonne tiles. So let's find out! Post your answers below, and post pictures too if you're able to. Let's do this thing!

Forum Statistics
For anyone who's interested, here's a quick recap of what July looked like from a forum statistics point of view:

64 new topics: most since May 2014 (65)
921 new posts: most since September 2013 (970)
102 new members: most since January 2014 (129)
36 members simultaneously online: most since May 2013 (38)
165,657 page views: most since May 2014 (173,740)

The Last Tile
All being well, I'm hoping that this newsletter can become a regular feature of Carcassonne Central and as such I want it to be fun, interesting and useful. So if you've liked what you've seen, haven't liked what you've seen or haven't seen anything at all after slipping into a Carcassonne-induced coma resulting from having stayed up all night trying to work out how many unique tiles would be included in a game of Mega-Carcassonne (ask on here next time, it's much easier) then I'd love to hear from you. Thoughts, suggestions, ideas, feedback, comments or anything else you may have to offer are always welcome so please feel free to contribute and help to improve future editions of Carcassonne Central News!
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: mas9dj on August 01, 2014, 05:05:11 AM
Nice, I like this newsletter a lot, great idea!

About the CKT I'm quite confused, i think I have it but I was wondering how can I post it without spoiling it to others.
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 05:10:54 AM
Hi mas9dj - glad you enjoyed it!

Send me a PM if you have an answer for the CKT. That way I can reveal all suggested answers at the same time.
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Paul on August 01, 2014, 06:52:46 AM
My take on the largest city possible with the basic game.

Synopsis: Do not let any 3-way and the 4-way junction(s) meet to maximise the size. I ended up with 12x 1-sided / 2 single-sided city tiles leftovers.

Else notable findings: There does not seem a way to complete every city. Following the synopsis above, by not joining any city tiles anywhere from both ends there will always be a leftover city side. (If this makes any sense, hard to explain.)

Score for the city: 84 points.

Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 07:11:08 AM
When I tried before, I came to a similar conclusion in that there were too many single-sided city tiles and not enough tiles with two or more city sides. For every tile with two or more city sides, one side is required to join it to the main body of the city whereas the other free sides were used by the single-sided tiles. There may be a better mathematical solution to the problem, but I think my city ended up being worth around 82 points with about a dozen tiles left over (including all 3 of the fcfc tiles where the two city segments are separate – it was too much effort trying to join these in).

My wife will be at the gym this evening after the kids have gone to bed so I think I know what I’m going to be doing... :)
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Jéré on August 01, 2014, 12:16:15 PM
Also 84pts! ...but maybe I can get extra points for the artistic performance? ;)


And thanks Dan for the newsletter! I'm impressed, really.
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: quevy on August 01, 2014, 01:20:09 PM
Perfectly symmetrical, very good.
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 01:21:21 PM
Wow Jéré - that is excellent! Merit for you for your creation of a symmetrical 84-point city!  :(y)

I agree with you both, 84 points seems to be the most I can get too although my city is distinctly less well organised:


That was a short homework, I guess I can play computer games for the rest of the month now that that's out of the way!  8)
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Paul on August 01, 2014, 01:30:02 PM
Jéré's model looks like Samus from Metroid (Nintendo 8-bit)!  :(y)
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: danisthirty on August 01, 2014, 01:47:58 PM
I don't know what Samus from Metroid looks like, but I do know that the road leading to the southerly most cloister looks vaguely inappropriate...  :D

(or maybe it's just me and the mention of "homework" has made me think I'm a schoolboy again)
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Carcking on August 01, 2014, 02:01:08 PM
Also 84pts! ...but maybe I can get extra points for the artistic performance? ;)


And thanks Dan for the newsletter! I'm impressed, really.

Wow Jéré - I think you built a Carcatronn!!
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: quevy on August 01, 2014, 02:19:25 PM
My city 84 points, all roads are connected in a single system road.

Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Jéré on August 02, 2014, 02:35:06 AM
Well done quevy! :)
Title: Re: Carcassonne Central News #1 - July 2014
Post by: Scott on August 04, 2014, 07:24:46 PM
This newsletter was fantastic!