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The Pillars of the Earth: Expansion Set» Forums » Variants

Subject: Playing with 5 or 6 on original board only? rss

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Larry Buckel
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Whittier
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My game group expressed interest in playing POE next week. Knowing they have never played it, I want to use the expansion cards and 2 additional player colors as our table will probably have 5 or 6 players. However to make it easier to teach and play I thought about only using 2 master builders in the bag per player and just use the original board. This should accommodate the extra players in the game. Anyone else tried this?

I enjoy the extra expansion cards but never felt a need to add the extra board, mostly because my games are 2-4 players. I'd hate to add the extra board just for one more player.

Any thoughts?
 
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Mike Flynn
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Olympia
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The extra board really doesn't add anything too complex to the game. I wouldn't worry about teaching the game with it included. Definitely use it with 5 or 6 players. That's its whole purpose.

While your idea of only using 2 Master Builders each on the main board may "work", but it would limit all players' ability to do what they need to do. I think this would be a disservice to anyone learning the game, as they wouldn't really get to see how different strategies would play out (having 6 fewer actions during the game).

That being said, if you do decide to try your idea, it would be interesting to hear back how it goes.
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Lauge Rosendahl
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I agree with Elkar here. I have played many games with noobs using the expansion, and have found it doesn't really complicate the game.
The last-in-first-out for the 3rd builder on the expansion board services to make the game less random, which helps to meet new players expectations (games of this size is usually a bit less radnom than standard Pillars).
 
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wayne r
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I think it will work with 5 players but not 6.

This past weekend I played a 6 player game using the expansion board with 3 new players and they got the basics down after the first round. I believe the expansion board only adds around 4 additional choices, 2 of which are a variation of the main board (the tax and market variation).

Also I don't think it will make a difference in terms of new players learning whether they deal with 2 or 3 master builders. The number of choices on the board still remain the same. The only thing foreign to the 3 new players was the concept of building an engine. It took them a couple of rounds to get that concept down.
 
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Adam O'Brien
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Raleigh
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The other thing is that the event that makes everyone (who is not immune) take one of their master builders off the board would be especially brutal if you only placed two to begin with.

I always teach the game with expansion board included, and never had problems as it adds very little complexity (and the crusades are a nice tradeoff when there is a lot of competition for the resource cards).
 
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Iain Cameron
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East Kilbride
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Oni no board wrote:
The only thing foreign to the 3 new players was the concept of building an engine. It took them a couple of rounds to get that concept down.


what is "building an engine"?
 
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wayne r
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tongalad wrote:
Oni no board wrote:
The only thing foreign to the 3 new players was the concept of building an engine. It took them a couple of rounds to get that concept down.


what is "building an engine"?


Basically, it is the process of converting resources using various in-game tools to cank out another type of resource vital to winning the game. It can be things like victory points or money. In Pillars of the Earth, the ultimate aim is to convert resources into victory points. As the game progresses, you are recruiting better and better craftsmans thereby creating an ever more efficient process where you are trying to optimize converting as much raw material to victory points as you can.

I see you have Power Grid. In that game you are trying to build a tableu of ever more efficient factories that uses less raw material(s) to power more of your cities.
 
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