Skip to Content

trade resources 2-for-1 at end of round

10 replies [Last post]
schmanthony
Offline
Joined: 12/18/2008

Hello,

I'm tweaking a prototype in the early stages of playtesting. I really like a recent tweak, but I'm stumped at how to overcome its undesirable side effect.

There are 3 resources in the game in limited quantities. At the end of each round players must reduce their inventory to 9 resource cubes or less by selling 3 of a kind for one gold coin (from an unlimited supply).

The problem was that certain resources ran out - which is by design - but the the consequence of not getting a resource you need was far too severe. To mitigate this, my tweak also allowed players to "trade" 2 of a kind for 1 of the resource they need.

This works great and I'd like to keep it. But the side effect is that occasionally there will be only 1 of a resource left in the supply, and more than one player might want to "trade" for it. So who is allowed to do it?

Most of my solutions involve breaking this end-of-round trading/selling into turns, instead of all players doing it simultaneously, but I don't like how this makes a very simple and uninteresting part of the game take longer. I also don't like the extra rules - which are needed to determine a temporary turn order since the game does not follow a typical clockwise/counterclockwise turn structure.

Any thoughts?

kungfugeek
kungfugeek's picture
Offline
Joined: 09/10/2008
Even if it is simultaneous

Players could have some kind of Initiative value that is used for a tie breaker in cases like this. The turns are still simultaneous, but Initiative is used to break ties. If this case won't happen very often, then some minor way of distributing initiative would work. If this case will happen frequently (or at crucial times) then Initiative should be more than an afterthought and probably worked into the game mechanics a little. It could be something the players accumulate over time or maybe some game event forces them to trade Initiative markers (each marker having a unique number on it) with each other.

Could also have Tie tokens. The first tie is broken arbitrarily (roll a die or something) but the player who loses the tie gets a Tie token. After that, ties are broken by the player who has the most tie tokens (the loser getting a tie token each time). When players have the same number of tie tokens, the tie is broken arbitrarily again but the loser still gets a tie token so he'll win for sure next time. There's at least one game available now that does this, but its name escapes me, and there are probably several.

ilta
ilta's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/05/2008
You can also have them bid.

You can also have them bid. Closed hands, revealing simultaneously. Continue until someone wins or someone backs down.

schmanthony
Offline
Joined: 12/18/2008
Here's what I want to avoid

Here's what I want to avoid with the 2-for-1 trade ability:

- making it a major source of competition
- making it too complex
- making it take too long
- adding too many rules
- introducing too many new components or areas to the board

Here is the solution I have in mind:

Add one component to the game - called "The Merchant." The player who starts last has the merchant.

During the Trading and Selling phase, only the player with the merchant can trade or sell resources. While a player has the merchant, he may use it for as many transactions as he wishes. When a player is finished with the merchant, other players may request it. The player with the merchant must select one of the players who requests it and give it to that player. You cannot request the merchant unless you immediately use it to conduct a transaction upon receiving it.

The Trading and Selling phase ends when all players have 9 resource cubes or less, and there are no more requests for the merchant.

That's it.

I'm a little unhappy with the length of the rules, but it satisfies my other requirements. I'm still interested in suggestions. Thanks to those you replied so far - it may not seem like it but you guys got my mind going in the right direction.

kodarr
Offline
Joined: 08/04/2008
What if the person with the

What if the person with the least gold gets the trade. This way it allows those not in the lead an advantage to catch up to leading players.

fecundity
fecundity's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
You could just refuse to

You could just refuse to break ties. If multiple players want the last token of a specific type, then none of them get it. If such conflicts will not occur too often, then the simple rule avoids squabbling over the last piece.

An alternative is to let players resolve one exchange at a time, going around the table. Even though the game doesn't use clockwise turn order for other things, people will still be seated around a table. If another player and I both want the last of two different resources, we'll each get one of what we want. (This makes more sense if conflicts like this happen often.)

schmanthony
Offline
Joined: 12/18/2008
fecundity: 1. refusing to

fecundity:

1. refusing to break ties... I thought about this myself. Then I sort of anticipated "bad feelings" in this type of scenario:

Player 1: I trade 2 iron for that 1 remaining rock.
Player 2: Oh yeah... I want to do that too. So I guess neither of us can. Bummer.

In short, Player 2 could exploit the rule to his advantage to prevent player 1 from getting rock - even if player 2 doesn't have an interest in trading for it. You could even *always* do this, as it will certainly always be to your advantage to prevent another player from getting something he needs. I don't think I like how that feels.

2. The going-round-the-table solution is similar to my current choice involving the merchant (read my earlier post) in that each player trades/sells one-at-a-time. Now, though, I'm thinking the player with the merchant must pass it to the player on his right whenever a request is made. This is just to remove the decision that I'd rather not be there. This is getting even close to your suggestion.

fecundity
fecundity's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/28/2008
"You could even *always* do

"You could even *always* do this, as it will certainly always be to your advantage to prevent another player from getting something he needs."

OK. Another option is just to prohibit trading if there are fewer of that resource left than the number of players. Same effect, perhaps, but no bad feelings.

schmanthony
Offline
Joined: 12/18/2008
Some players may want to

Some players may want to conduct more than 1 trade :)

john.dattalo@gm...
Offline
Joined: 08/24/2008
you go with the monopoly

you go with the monopoly concept (not the game, the economic one) and use the idea that its easier to obtain the resource if you control the market. Thus the when players are in contention for the last resource cube the player that has the "most" of said resource alway has the option to take the last one first. If that player passes it moves on to player with the 2nd highest number of the said resource.

Darkehorse
Darkehorse's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/21/2008
How about this

I assume each person has a color. Each player gets a trade card with their color on it. At the beginning of the game arrange the trade cards such that the player who went last has his card in the front of the queue, the next to last player is next, etc with the player who went first is at the back of the queue.

During the trade 2 for 1 phase , if more than 1 player wants a resource, then whomever's trade card is nearest the front gets the resource. Their trade card is then swapped towards the back of the trade queue, and other all other players involved with the trade are moved forward.

Example:
Players B, D, and E all want to trade 2 for 1 for the Silk resource.

Currently the queue is:
A
B
C
D
E
F

B gets to trade for the good, and the resulting queue is:

A
D
C
E
B
F

You could also add another interesting element by having each player keeping their trade cards secret, until they need to compare and then trade them amongst each other after the results are revealed. I.E. at the beginning of the game, the player in last place gets a card marked 1, the next to last gets 2, etc. Obviously with this system the player that plays the lowest valued trade card would get to trade for the resource.

Hope you are able to use this is some fashion. Good luck with your game.
-Darke

Syndicate content


forum | by Dr. Radut