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Rise of Empires» Forums » Variants

Subject: 2-Player Variant (Actually Playtested!) rss

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Chris Flood
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I really enjoy Rise of Empires and accept that it is at its heart an area majority game. Like most such games, it suffers at lower player counts, but matters are made worse because map domination becomes even more important with fewer players. You've got the exact same number of Victory Points available on the board (~400 if you include various resources that can eventually be converted to VPs), but far less competition for them, making acquiring and deploying population cubes the only thing worth doing in the game.

Therefore, I've developed the following variant that attempts to retain the underlying balance you'll find in a 5-player game. I have playtested it several times, and scores are very close. While the "default" strategy of ignoring cities and attacking the board early on remains quite strong, those who build a City/Wonder each phase and maybe even two per phase in Era III remain competitive, as long as they do not ignore population. Generally, this latter player will be in the lead through the first two Eras, and then the aggressive population player will surge forward in Era III. However, unlike under the standard rules, this late game surge does not guarantee victory, and decisions made earlier in the game will determine its success.

Variant Rules

1. NW Africa and Anatolia grant only one, not two, population cubes.

2. When scoring map regions, the controlling player may pick between getting the rightmost number in VPs or the resources granted by that region. If the other player is present in that region, he gets whatever the controlling player did not choose. The leftmost number is ignored.

3. When Ideology and Religion tiles are flipped, immediately remove them from the game. They provide a nice boost to the last place player in 5-player games, but essentially hand the game to the 2nd-place player (i.e., the one who hasn't built any Cities or Wonders) in a 2-player game.
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Ben Skellett
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I know I'm gonna get got. But I'm gonna get mine more than I get got.
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We just played a 2p game using these rules & it went pretty well.

I just wanted to confirm what happens when there's a tie for controlling a region. I presume the leftmost VPs are halved & rounded down for both players & the 'benefits' are also halved & rounded down for both players. In the case of NW Africa & Anatolia that results in both tied players getting nothing (due to the rounding down).

The 3rd age regions were also a bit interesting in this variant with the controlling player getting 3VP & the player with the second most cubes getting nothing. This compares to the 2nd age regions where the the controlling player has to choose between 2VP or 3 food/resources/gold with the second player receiving the other. That seemed to make it less attractive to contest the 3rd age regions than the 2nd age regions but I like the minimal rule changes of this variant more than I would like to fiddle with it further.
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Xavier
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Thank you for this 2-player variant. I translated it in French and gave it a little layout. As I quote you, do I have your permission to upload it in the files?

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Chris Flood
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Flubuh wrote:
Thank you for this 2-player variant. I translated it in French and gave it a little layout. As I quote you, do I have your permission to upload it in the files?



No problem. Glad this is getting some use!
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