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Subject: Base Set, first play rss

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Chrees M
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We got the game home, popped the box for that fresh "board-game" smell (well, I did, he stared at me for a few seconds before shaking his head), and took in the contents. Oversized (beautiful) cards, dragons the same as Blue Moon City (I had heard a rumour the ones in Blue Moon were smaller, but nope, same size), and the board. After going through the manual, we started our first game, me as Hoax, he as Vulca.

We decided, as I'd read the rules while he looked through the cards, that I should go first, to explain how the turns work. With that, i took a look through my hand, saw a nice high value for Earth, and attacked using it. Without looking at each decks, and only going on the art from Blue Moon City, I assumed Vulca was weaker with Earth, and envisioned a pounding, as we all know, Earth pretty much dampens out Fire. After laying down my strongest card, I watched with a half-smirk as he looked through his hand. Down went a 5 earth character, and support card that stopped me from playing anything other than characters. I hadn't got anything left to match it with just a character and was forced to retreat.
First Dragon to him (0-1).

I decided to fight again, using the best character in my hand, with a nice total in fire. He matched this, and the game went backwards and forwards, both of us going down our draw-decks pretty evenly, before it happened. I had no character. We looked through the rules, and couldn't really find anything there, so we assumed that without a character, you are forced to retreat.
Second Dragon to him (0-2).

By now I was down my deck pretty well, but i had my secret weapon, the retrieval cards. I played the retrievable character, with earth, then when he matched that, on my turn pulled it back into my hand, and played it again with the booster. You could tell he was having problems matching the earth total, and with the retrievable character and booster on the table, he just smiled and said "i retreat". He even handed me one of his dragons too, and offered to scoop my cards into the discard, retrieval characters and all. I could have screamed, I'd been too cocky with their use, and lost them.
First Dragon to me (1-1).

As he withdrew, he got to attack first. Using fire again, he placed down some heavy totals, and only through the Flit's 'ignore' ability did I survive. He carried on the offensive, each time easily responding to my defence. The shield-value booster saved me another turn, as did the mutant which changed the power type to Earth, but it was in vain. Instead he played the leadership that involved discarding fire cards to a total value of 8, to attract a dragon (Second Dragon to him (0-2)), and then placed down a low character with a booster that increased it's power to six. I had nothing to match it (I was running low with my own deck), and had to withdraw, giving him the Third Dragon (0-3). He was out of cards too, had burned through his hand, and the game was over.


He won.

There was a few mistakes i made, things like over-extending with the retrieval abilities, not using the leadership cards (forgot I even had them at times), but the luck of the draw was against me. Even so, it was a good game.

Edit:

We did alot of things wrong in the first game. The dragon attraction for example (he would have won 0-2, not 0-3). We have played games since, but not really used the rulebook as anything more than a basic reference. I think both of us sitting down with the rules, would make things a little easier.

 
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Christopher Dearlove
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Muzzaro wrote:
We looked through the rules, and couldn't really find anything there, so we assumed that without a character, you are forced to retreat.

Correct. It is in the rules somewhere, but it's too late at night for me to check where now.
 
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ɹɹǝʞ uɐɥʇɐu
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I recently had my first play of Blue Moon and had some questions.

First off, we read the rules that when you win a battle and attract a dragon, you first attract them from your opponent to the middle (neutral) ground. And then if your opponent has no dragons, only then do you attract the dragon onto your side. Was that wrong?

Second, we read the rules as you *must* play a character card on your turn, or you are forced to retreat.

Also, I don't really understand the option to not start a fight.

The strategy I used was to see what I had a strong hand in and lead with the lowest character of that trait, saving my big guns for the later rounds. You did the exact opposite. Would you say that you might have fared better doing it my way?
 
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Chrees M
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Hmm. This isn't good really... we made alot of errors in our first games, and i'm wondering if i should take the session down. He would have won still (0-2, using the right attraction rules), but still. I hate inaccuracies.

Yes, you have to retreat if you have no character, same thing happens if you have to start a fight, and have no character, you must opt to not start the fight.

Not starting the fight is pretty simple. If it is your turn to fight, you can decide not to, and instead discard 1-3 cards, and then draw cards to bring your hand back to six cards. It has some uses, such as getting rid of cards that won't be that useful to you, also some people prefer to pay defensively. I've never seen in the four or five games i've played so far, any real use in it barring when you have no character, but i'm sure there will be uses.

I think, strategy wise, the Vulca would be more useful doing my "all in at the first hurdle" strategy, they have some 'big guns', enough to lock down the Hoax deck within two turns of a battle (high fire value character, plus a booster that allows you to double the fire value). Hoax are more 'softly softly', but i was trying to play aggressive, and it backfired. Later games, using the retrieval cards more sparingly, not to mention making full use of the leadership cards and the characters with low power but nice abilities (the "you do not attract a dragon when i retreat" is a god-send).
 
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Roger Taylor
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Quote:
First off, we read the rules that when you win a battle and attract a dragon, you first attract them from your opponent to the middle (neutral) ground. And then if your opponent has no dragons, only then do you attract the dragon onto your side. Was that wrong?
That's correct. Only one (or no) player will have dragons.

Quote:
Also, I don't really understand the option to not start a fight.
Usually, you decline to start a fight only if:

1. You can't (you have no character in your hand), or

2. Your deck is exhausted, you have 1-3 cards left in your hand, and you don't think you can win a fight, so you end the game.

If you take the discard-and-draw option hoping to sweeten your hand, you make it more likely you'll run out of cards first (bad) as well as give the initiative to your opponent.
 
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Matthew M
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rtaylor wrote:

Usually, you decline to start a fight only if:

1. You can't (you have no character in your hand), or

2. Your deck is exhausted, you have 1-3 cards left in your hand, and you don't think you can win a fight, so you end the game.

I will also decline if I could start a fight, but shouldn't because I only have one character. If I have a playable Leadership card I'll play it and then decline and discard maybe one (more I didn't have a Leadership) in hopes of getting another character. If I don't, I will probably be playing at least two cards on my turn and have decent odds of finally getting some backup at that point.

Quote:

If you take the discard-and-draw option hoping to sweeten your hand, you make it more likely you'll run out of cards first (bad) as well as give the initiative to your opponent.

Running out of cards first is only bad if you are losing or the game is tied. You want to encourage it if you are ahead and can maintain it. Giving up initiative is only bad if you care. The Vulca and the Terrah don't like giving up initiative because it's easy to know what to play against them. The benefit of initiative is slightly less when playing against a more balanced deck. Further, going second has the advantage of being first to (normally) play a booster/support. I might decline on a rare occasion only because I want to be able to play a booster or support with my first play of the fight, thus I want you to start it.

Quote:
Hmm. This isn't good really... we made alot of errors in our first games, and i'm wondering if i should take the session down.

I wouldn't advise that. Someone else who might be playing wrong in the same way might only discover it by reading the comments in this thread. And some interesting discussion has spun off of it to boot. Certainly worth keeping.

-MMM
 
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I will not rest until Biblios is in the Top 100. - Steve Oksienik
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Don't feel bad. We've played about 5 times now, and I'm still finding things I did wrong. Keep it up there because with the comments below, newbies will be able to get a complete picture of how things are supposed to work.
 
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Christopher Dearlove
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Octavian wrote:
Giving up initiative is only bad if you care. The Vulca and the Terrah don't like giving up initiative because it's easy to know what to play against them. The benefit of initiative is slightly less when playing against a more balanced deck. Further, going second has the advantage of being first to (normally) play a booster/support. I might decline on a rare occasion only because I want to be able to play a booster or support with my first play of the fight, thus I want you to start it.

Expanding on this rather than disagreeing with it.

Even the more balanced decks have their moments when the cards in hand strongly favour one element or the other. They vary in how often this happens though.

The other case I often want to start a fight is with a character card with special power text (Mimix shamans are a good example, but not the only one). As these (apart from some special cases) have a maximum power of 2, it can definitely help to start in these cases. The flip side of this is that starting at power 2 or less is an invitation for your opponent to still be able to play such cards, so you want to thing carefully about this - typically is my text more important than my opponent's might be?
 
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Christopher Dearlove
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stormseeker75 wrote:
Don't feel bad. We've played about 5 times now, and I'm still finding things I did wrong.

I guess at this point I might mention the FAQ list. Not to everyone's tastes, but worth finding out if it's to yours.
 
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Joe Stude
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Sheeeeoot, I've played over 100 games by now and I still occasionally get caught doing things I shouldn't be. Sign of a good game.
 
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Chrees M
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Yeah, i want to play it more, but got to wait until Sunday before my friends come over. I suppose i could study the cards, but that doesn't seem too fair?
 
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Joe Stude
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yeh, there's something to be said for learning at the same pace as the people you'll eventually be playing with.
 
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Chrees M
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True, i just want more game-time! ;P

Last week we just kind-of hung around and watched films, so that's two weeks nearly without games. I've got Blue Moon City, Flux, Starship Catan and Blue Moon all waiting to be played, not to mention i've got to dig out my Rage cards and look into deck building.
 
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Roger Taylor
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Matthew, thanks for the advice above. (To everyone: he's a much more experienced Blue Moon player than me!)
 
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Complete & Sufficient Statistician
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Quote:
I think, strategy wise, the Vulca would be more useful doing my "all in at the first hurdle" strategy, they have some 'big guns', enough to lock down the Hoax deck within two turns of a battle (high fire value character, plus a booster that allows you to double the fire value). Hoax are more 'softly softly', but i was trying to play aggressive, and it backfired. Later games, using the retrieval cards more sparingly, not to mention making full use of the leadership cards and the characters with low power but nice abilities (the "you do not attract a dragon when i retreat" is a god-send).

That pretty much sums it up. Vulca should go for quick battles before Hoax has a chance to build up. Hoax looks weaker with smaller numbers, but they'll come out ahead if you dilly-dally too much.
 
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