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thoughts on Advanced Civ

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  • Matthew Horn
    Better late than never... Just a few thoughts. I think one of the most interesting things about the game (8+ hours with 7 players) was that there were in fact
    Message 1 of 3 , Mar 1, 2001
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      Better late than never...

      Just a few thoughts.

      I think one of the most interesting things about the game (8+ hours with 7
      players) was that there were in fact several games going on at once. Outside
      of trading and occasional secondary calamity effects, I really had no idea
      what was even going on on the "other side of the world" (like Dan C. and
      Dave B's and to some extent Mark's civilizations). The game was difficult
      enough dealing with my direct neighbors (making deals, drawing borders,
      listening to Walter, etc), but knowing that there were several other civs
      developing that I had hardly any contact with makes the whole experience
      richer.

      There is so much going on that I could really see Advanced Civ as a
      television event with the same production values as Temptation Island or
      Survivor. Picture the camera panning across the ashen face of Craig as he
      was just dealt Heresy. How will he deal with it? Let's watch and see after
      this commercial break...

      I do have a criticism about the game. Part of the Advanced game was to
      include more Civ cards (like Mining). I thought the result of this would be
      that the civilizations would all develop in different ways -- one would be
      more warlike with more emphasis on the combat-oriented dev cards; another
      would be more insulated with protection from the calamities, making them
      less touchable or perhaps more open to trading.

      However, in practice the cards became commoditized to some extent and we all
      ended up with the same ones (almost all of them) any way. This was a minor
      disappointment to me, but still it was a great gaming experience.

      Hopefully, I'll see you all next President's day.
    • Mark Edwards
      I agree with most of what Matt says here. The TV event thing is even silly enough that a TV producer might buy into it. ;-) I was thinking the other day of
      Message 2 of 3 , Mar 1, 2001
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        I agree with most of what Matt says here. The TV event thing is even silly enough that a TV producer might buy into it. ;-)

        I was thinking the other day of some way to take the "screwage" out of the trading segment. The trading is one of my favorite "games within the game" (it kind of reminds me of "Pit") but I think the current implementation is a little flawed (or at least not to my liking). Obviously there should be a potential "gotcha" to trading, but I think both the person who draws a calamity and the person he deals it to are a both hit harder than they should through no fault of their own. The person who draws the calamity not only has the onus put on him to get rid of it (if he can), but he was just deprived of a commodity card to boot. And the person who gets the calamity obviously feels a bit put upon.

        <caution, I'm about to do some brainstorming here, please be careful ahead ;-)>
        There obviously should be some potential "gotcha" to the trading and some source of calamities in the game. I was thinking of perhaps using some sort of chips to keep track of how many trades you made during the trading round. The more chips you accumulate the more likely a calamity would befall your civilization. Perhaps you would even accumulate chips from round to round and only clear them (some of them based on the severity of the calamity?) when a calamity finally did hit you. Perhaps each player might even have their own color chips so that when secondary effects were doled out you could trace who you traded with.
        Another tweak that might be fun is actually turning that trading segment into something closer to "Pit". The object obviously would be to get big commodity sets, but in this case you'd only be calling out numbers and doing it "blind". A definite time limit would have to be involved here. This would add some chaos and remove the calculation and used car salesmanship.

        As I mentioned in an earlier post, there's a lot to love about Advanced Civilization, but the tinkerer in me wants desperately to figure out a way to synthesize and shorten the experience. Unfortunately none of the ideas above are a step in that direction, but they are neat to mull over.

        Anyhoot, it'd be fun make a cut at an Advanced Civ-lite and keep all the sub games involved.

        Mark


        Matthew Horn wrote:

        > Better late than never...
        >
        > Just a few thoughts.
        >
        > ....<snip>... Hopefully, I'll see you all next President's day.

        --

        http://people.ne.mediaone.net/dangermouse/index.htm
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      • Matthew Horn
        ... I agree. Maybe have the calamity give the person a choice of which commodity (of that number) they can have -- in addition to the calamitous effects. This
        Message 3 of 3 , Mar 1, 2001
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          Mark Edwards wrote:

          >> I was thinking the other day of some way to take the "screwage" out
          >> of the trading segment

          I agree. Maybe have the calamity give the person a choice of which commodity
          (of that number) they can have -- in addition to the calamitous effects.
          This would also help do away with the tactic of collecting more than 2
          calamities in a round just so you can deal one out, since people won't be SO
          eager to get rid of them for nothing in return.
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