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Subject: Commandments for beginners rss

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Paul Harrington
United States
Fort Myers
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I have too often seen players play their first few games and get so totally trounced that it's not any fun for anybody. I recently watched a friend of mine play one of her first games on BSW against an experienced player with a 72% win rate with fairly predictable results. There's no way I can give a beginner advice to make them win (except draw a first round Mistress lol) but I will come up with some rules to make the initial trouncing more like 100 to 80 rather than the typical 200 to 30. These ideas are contraversial; if you have a clue how to play, you shouldn't blindly follow them. These rules are strictly for players who are either beginners or feel like they still don't "get" the game - you know who you are. In some cases I have included in red notes to the more experienced players why I have made the rule as I have.

1. In the early (first three) rounds, thou shalt IN THE GREEN PHASE buy every green card thou canst; and in cases where there is a choice, thou shalt choose the cheapest. Starting with the fourth round (i.e. the fourth new green phase), buy green cards that cost thee 3 or less, perhaps cost 4 if thou ist sure there's going to be another round, or any that thou must buy because thou hast the matching upgrade without the green card.

2. Thou shalt not buy ANY blue cards costing more than 2 rubles in the first two blue phases.

Yes, I know that the observatory costs more than 2 rubles, but most moderately competent players screw up with the observatory and get themselves too hand-logged, so I am certain that a beginner would use the observatory to his own disadvantage; and is therefore better off without it. He will find the 6 rubles quite handy elsewhere.

3. If thou has the noble symbol (token), thou shalt put one blue card in thy hand to have a red card turn up, provided that none of thine opponents have already done so. Having done this, thou shalt buy the biggest baddest red card that thou canst afford when the red cards come up. As a beginner, I don't think it makes a lot of difference whether he clears a space for himself if he is not first. Doing so increases the chances for a Mistress for the first player.

4. Thou shalt NOT have a full hand going into the upgrade phase, unless thou willst not be getting an upgrade. This means if thine hand ist full, thou must buy a card during the blue or red phase. This keeps our newbie from having a stuffed hand, the bane of most inexperienced players.

5. During the upgrade phase, thou shalt take an upgrade card into thine hand. In the first two rounds, look for upgrades that provide extra income. Later than that, thou shall select red upgrades when possible. Thou shalt not actually buy an upgrade until the round it's needed. I know there are numerous exceptions, but the rule is a good basic ones until the player knows why he's breaking it.

6. In the FIRST upgrade phase, thou shalt see how many spaces are needed on the board in order for you to get a green card for thyself the next round, remembering that the tokens will move counterclockwise. If taking one card into thine hand will givest thou
a green card that thou willst not receive otherwise, place a fairly cheap blue card (or an upgrade if one is available) into thy hand.

EDIT 5-7-2011 DOH! I can't beileve that this has been here for 3 1/2 years and nobody has noticed! The tokens move CLOCKWISE. (Maybe people noticed but were too kind to say anything.)
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Tim Rogers
Canada
Kamloops
British Columbia
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paulhar wrote:

3. If thou has the noble symbol (token), thou shalt put one blue card in thy hand to have a red card turn up, provided that none of thine opponents have already done so. Having done this, thou shalt buy the biggest baddest red card that thou canst afford when the red cards come up.


Thanks for the tips. Just a few questions about point 3.

Why does one purchase the most expensive red card available? Isn't one saving some cash for the upcoming green round? Also, how expensive a building do you recommend taking into your hand (assuming the cheapest) to ensure a red card comes your way?
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Dave Eisen
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Drez wrote:
paulhar wrote:

3. If thou has the noble symbol (token), thou shalt put one blue card in thy hand to have a red card turn up, provided that none of thine opponents have already done so. Having done this, thou shalt buy the biggest baddest red card that thou canst afford when the red cards come up.


Thanks for the tips. Just a few questions about point 3.

Why does one purchase the most expensive red card available? Isn't one saving some cash for the upcoming green round? Also, how expensive a building do you recommend taking into your hand (assuming the cheapest) to ensure a red card comes your way?


I buy biggest and baddest red card on the first turn.

On the second turn I buy baby red card if any. You need to watch your money for the critical third green worker phase. That is the first phase when cards have fallen off the bottom row and there could well be lots of green cards available to purchase and you want to buy as many as you can.

As far as which blue card to put in hand, I generally put the cheapest. I want to be able to get that blue card out of hand if critical upgrade cards need to be pulled and I don't want cash flow preventing that.
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Dan Poole
United States
Goldsboro
North Carolina
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Agree....Always buy the biggest, baddes noble available the first turn. Remember, you are not likely to get more than 1 green card on turn 2 (though this may vary some depending on the number of players). Furthermore, if I have the noble block on the first turn, try to make sure you have 18 Rubels in case the Mistress of Ceremonies pops up.

These are generally good recommendations. It is discussions like this that remind me why I rate St. Pete a 10 (my one and only 10).
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