Post by Goodgulf the Grey on Jun 13, 2007 17:30:37 GMT 1
I've seen a lot of interest on BGG for a simple variant that makes the Basic Game more balanced...
What about the following:
Free Peoples player starts with 5 Action Dice and gets a 6th Action die when Gandalf the White enters play OR when Strider is changed to Aragorn. The 6th die remains so long as either GtW or Aragorn is in play.
This allows the FP to pursue either a GtW path with Strider sprint or keep Gandalf the Grey and get Aragorn or just utilize 5 Action Dice.
Simple and Elegant? Yes Balanced? Don't know yet...
Does anyone see any major pitfalls? Will this make it more/less fun to play the Free?
Post by Goodgulf the Grey on Jun 19, 2007 19:04:14 GMT 1
I played 4 games with this variant and the extra dice are just too strong for the FP. The first game was and SP victory but after that 3 FP Ring Victories and only 1 was close. Not a significant sample size but enough for some early observations and issues.
5 dice early is strong, but it is 6 dice (sometimes starting turn 2!) that really tilts the edge. 5 dice makes the SP be more careful with the Hunt since the FP can move even more consistently with a Strider Sprint... which brings up another problem -- there is almost no incentive to get Strider > Aragorn (unless you do it early and plan to keep GtG as Guide -- which didn't happen yet). Mostly it was Strider leading the FP until he is lost in the hunt since the extra dice allow for more defense...
Here are the modifications to this variant that I will try out -- FP starts with 5 dice ... can ONLY get to 6 dice if BOTH GtW and Aragorn are in play. In addition, Strider -> Aragorn allows the FP to advance all Active Nations 1 step on the Political Track.
This would address both issues and would keep the FP playing with 5 dice for most of the game -- This seems fair and more balanced and the FP is no longer reliant on luck of the dice to get his 5th action die (plus it doesn't cost him anything). I still want to keep the rules changes to a minimum so the Aragorn bonus rule may get dropped later...
At this point you've got as many rules as the other base game variants. Edit: Having the 5th die from the outset does do a good job of downplaying the consequences of WoW blight. IMHO that's the #1 problem with the game, so good job.
Last Edit: Jun 20, 2007 4:33:08 GMT 1 by mrweasely
Post by luckydogwilson on Jun 20, 2007 13:33:47 GMT 1
Bid the number of turns the Sauron nation will remain passive.
Higher bid plays the SP.
Sauron goes active immediately if FP gain an extra dice (Aragaorn GTW)
I had proposed this with activation tied into finding the ring, but that (although it does seem to work) may be too random for most peoples taste. Bidding allows the players to adjust for "perfect" personal ballance.
Post by Goodgulf the Grey on Jun 21, 2007 19:14:37 GMT 1
Bidding certainly can work to "balance" the game, but I'm trying to make it work within the game and not require bidding (just a personal preference).
How about simplifying it by doing the following (psuedo Galadriel effect)...
Free People starts with 4 Action Dice. (standard rules) Add 1 die for converting Strider > Aragorn. (standard rules) this die is removed if Aragorn is eliminated (standard rules)
Add 1 die for either of the following: Gandalf the White is mustered (standard rules) OR Sauron goes to War (Psuedo Galadriel variant) this die is removed if Gandalf the White is eliminated (standard rules).
This would give the FP a boost when Sauron goes to War and avoids the (can't roll a Will of the West problem for GtW). It gives the FP a chance to keep GtG as Guide and draw lots of Character cards which allows for companions to separate but it also allows GtW to show up (and get a 5th Action die) if Saruman is mustered even if Sauron is not at War.
If Sauron is at war and Gandalf the White is not in play, then the FP player may use an elven ring to get an extra Action Die during step 4) Action Roll. Important: An elven ring used this way is not going to the Shadow player and is immediately removed from play.
So this way the FP can get three turns an extra action die but then Gandalf the White needs to enter the game if the FP still wants to keep that extra die. Also if the Shadow doesn't get the elven ring then it's interesting for the FP to use the elven rings otherwise it's not worth it to use an elven ring this way.
If the FSP is not in Mordor and Sauron is "At War", then the FP player may use an Elven Ring to get an extra Action Die during step 4) Action Roll. Important: An Elven Ring used this way is not going to the Shadow player and is immediately removed from play. Note: The extra Action Die has to come from the pool of unused or removed FP Action Dice.
I am looking for someone to play WotR online but it seems that nobody is ever online. <g>
+ to give an extra incentive to fight with Aragorn and/or Gandalf the White (and so risking to lose them).
The condition about the FSP may not be in Mordor is included to avoid that the elven rings are used in the endgame. It’s interesting to see that the attacks against Lorien, Minas Tirith and the DEW did not happen before Frodo entered Mordor. So if the Shadow player should follow this “by the book” strategy then Sauron will not go at war before the FSP entering Mordor and by doing this the Shadow player can make this special rule about the elven ring obsolete. Otherwise there is no incentive to wait with bringing Sauron at war. Cuz the FP player can almost always use these elven rings in the end game to get extra dice. So this way we get the more "historical" path with Saruman first entering the war (just like in the expansion).
What about this easy fix to balance the basic game ?
The FP player gets an extra Action Die during the Action Roll when Sauron is “At War” and the FSP is not in Mordor.(Note: This extra Action Die has to come from the pool of unused or removed FP Action Dice.)