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Macao» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Hard decisions rss

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Steve Briscoe
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Shropshire
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I have only played twice so far, and that was solo as four players, and the one mistake that I do for some reason is at the start of the game. I follow the correct rules but strategy I get wrong.
You start with the one B/P card and collect 3 cubes. One for the first position on the wind rose and the others on position 2 of the same. The mistake that I make from the strategy point of view is this: If my card has for example three cubes like 1 red and 2 black, I grab these for the starting cubes. Problem is that all three cubes cannot be used for this card as you only use the first cube.
What do you do for the initial move? and what does your planning consist of? and what sways your planning into certain decisions in this game?
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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Sacramento
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Common initial moves are to grab ware tiles (placing a marker), moving up on the wall to gain first dibs on the next set of cards.

My initial planning depends on what office cards are coming up, how the ware tiles are distributed. Early strategy, (for me at least) evolves as more cards reveal themselves through the drafting.
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Steve Briscoe
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Thanks Loren, that was a quick reply and interesting to see how you plan and thought processes involved, I just thought "now what do I do", and my brain went blank.
 
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Steve Kearon
United Kingdom
Cardiff
Wales
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It depends on turn order.

On turn 1, I'll either grab a ware (taking care to choose different turn 1 cubes to players going before me). If I'm last in turn order, I'll probably move up the wall instead (to become first in turn order).
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Jack
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I echo what the responders have said, as I also usually go for a ware and I will try to grab a couple close to each other with my idea for game-end longest chain. It also depends what office cards are coming up. If there are all high cost office cards, then you might aim to get that color of cubes in case you get stuck with one of those.
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Bryan Thunkd
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Florence
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The single cube city quarters disappear early, so your first and second moves may be your only shot to get them. If you are looking at a certain set of goods tiles that are close together you probably want to pick up the single cube city quarter near them and then plan on getting cubes of that color and trying to dominate that area of the city.

Alternatively, going up on the wall and getting first pick of cards is huge.

If there is a two cube office card available second turn (which you can see) and you can either a) get first on the wall or b) tell that no one else has gone for cubes of that color, then picking your two cubes in second position to be able to get and play that card could work.
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Jack
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Thunkd wrote:
Alternatively, going up on the wall and getting first pick of cards is huge.


Unless they all suck when you pick first as so often is the case for me.
 
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Bryan Thunkd
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senorcoo wrote:
Unless they all suck when you pick first as so often is the case for me.


Usually some suck less though.
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Carl Garber
Canada
Vauxhall
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Like has already been said your early cubes will be spent on cheap city quarters, especially ones that carry the same good type, and possibly on the wall.

What guides what you do is the cards and the cubes(as well as the early goods u grab). I normally will try to grab more goods from the city quarters that are in the relatively same area on the map so that it is easier to delver them all. I will give priority to these goods that are closer to quarters I have already built for the chaining points at the end of the game.

Unlike other games, the cards in Macao are NOT balanced. early on you will have to consider the relative worth of each card taking into account how hard it is to activate.

After your first card draw more factors come into play when selecting cards. From then on you also have to consider cards worth in light of their synergy with other cards you have as well as cube synergies. What I mean by cube synergies is cards that ask for the same cubes as other cards you already have, that way you can try in MULTIPLE slots lining up the same colored dice(ie. if you have 4 cards that all call for blue, grey, and purple you will try to line up these 3 colors in 2 or 3 different slots on the windrose). Also, you need to consider cubes you already have lined up as well.

your thought proccess might go something like this:

"Cards A and B are clearly the best, but card C's ability works well with the cards I already have and makes it worth about as much as A and B, card D is less good but I already have the cubes I need to activate it and they are only two slots away. I don't have any of the cubes card A is calling for so that one is out, I currently have 4 spots on my tableu open so I don't NEED to grab card D as I have some time to activate cards, card C I am only missing one cube color and the other ones are in a slot 4 windrose spots away so I could possibly get the last color by the time they get to the arrow, card B I have one of the colors 6 spots away but the cubes the card asks for don't really match with the other card I have on my tableau....I think I'll draft card C"

Also, when selecting cubes I try to fill the gaps early game and then take big dice(5's or 6's) as much as possible. If dice come up that match a cards activation cost(ie. a card needs grey and green and both the grey and green dice roll as 4's) I will probably go for that as well.(when I select big dice I obviously first go for the ones that match the cards activation cost).

I hope this helps a bit.

Happy Gaming!
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Steve Briscoe
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Thank you all for the replies, and Carl for your indepth explanation. It puts me in mind of when you hear a Chess master working out several moves ahead in a Chess game. These replies really have helped my thoughts into how we approach each and every choice in the game....thanks to all!!
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Jack
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Except that chess masters don't have to worry about dice hating them and not giving them the cubes they desperately need. whistle
 
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Bryan Thunkd
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senorcoo wrote:
Except that chess masters don't have to worry about dice hating them and not giving them the cubes they desperately need. whistle


Are you kidding? I have never gotten a good dice roll in chess and I am always short on cubes!
 
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