Thoughts on Market Variant

Thoughts on Market Variant

Message par PeteNBlastoise » 24 Août 2015 18:56

I have not yet even started a game with the Market Variant, but I wanted to open up a thread to discuss any thoughts people have about it.

My initial response is that I'm glad Daniele Tascini is thinking about this. It seems that a lot of players lose interest in Tzolk'in once they discover that nearly every game is won with the dominant strategy (with some minor variations depending on the setup). I myself play the big resources strategy in about 90% of games I think.

In terms of the implementation, I can't tell yet how much of an effect it will have. It will certainly make getting wood a lot harder, and I suspect that the Huracan tribe will be much more powerful. But overall, I can see how this limitation will help to balance the game and make alternative strategies more viable.

Now if we could just find an elegant fix for the starting player advantage, then the game would be perfect! (I have ideas on this, but will refrain from getting off topic here.)

Looking forward to seeing how it plays out!
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Re: Thoughts on Market Variant

Message par dizzark » 27 Août 2015 3:38

Hello guys,
Thanks alot for helping.

Answering to PeteNBlastoise I want to make a few consideration on this issue.
The so called 'big resources' strategy is not exactly a strategy, but it is more in my opinion an engine. The corn engine given by the accumulation of resources (gold and stone) to be sold at the market (with the easiness of buying wood), has the natural outlet in the building strategy, but it can be easily converted in something else at need, like placing many skulls and/or step up on all temples.
That's why I call it an engine and not a strategy...

Said that, the reason why this engine is superior to any other engine in the game has a mathematical reason:
With full technologies development Palenque 5 gives 12corn, while Yaxchilan 5 gives 16 corn after the resorces convertion.
When I designed the game in my head this should be balanced by the fact you need to place on Uxmal and go to the market to change them... and it worked until after undreads of games it has been found that optimizing it and going to the market 2/3 times during the game this balance wasn't enough...

So now the reason why I think that this issue can be easily fixed by limiting the market action, is because you are forced to go the market many times and/or have no easy access to wood buying.
My purpose is not to disrupt the big resources engine but to put it back competing with other game systems.
Also the prophecies that in someway stressed the problem, should be much more intersting when not bypassed by the big amount of easy corn.

Well, at least those are my thoughts, this test is to check if I'm right or not.
Of course any comment, opinion, idea and suggestion from all of you expert players is highly welcome.

Thanks again
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Inscription : 14 Avr 2014 17:30

Re: Thoughts on Market Variant

Message par Kja » 28 Août 2015 15:03

Hello all :)

Tzolkin is a very good game !
It's realy damage for this "dominant strategy"...

I thought about a modifications for modify this situation.
With full technologies development Palenque 5 gives 12corn, while Yaxchilan 5 gives 16 corn after the resorces convertion.

Indeed, the difference between this 2 actions is too big ! You just reduce the gap.

I propose differents adjusments :
on the Yaxchilan 3 case : remove 1 corn
on the Yaxchilan 5 case : remove the 2 corns (or 1)
on the Palenque 3,4,5 case : add 1 corn

After that, I think the Palenque and the Yaxchilan wheel have a better balanced.

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Re: Thoughts on Market Variant

Message par PeteNBlastoise » 28 Août 2015 19:36

I had also thought that just removing the corn on Y2, Y3, and Y5 would help (it would also make hitting Y5 multiple times with U5 much more difficult when low on corn, and would likely require more begging). However, I think there is something nice about the Market Variant solution in that is does not require changes to anything that is actually printed on the board that people already own (you could also modify the resource extraction or agriculture techs in some way to try to balance them as well, but I don't think that's elegant either). Another idea I once had was to create a difference in the exchange rate for buying vs. selling (e.g. buy W/S/G for 2/3/4, but sell them for 1/2/3)... I haven't thought too much about the implications of this, but I figured I would put it out there.
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Re: Thoughts on Market Variant

Message par flowerscandrink » 01 Sep 2015 15:08

I'll be testing this for sure! Tzolk'in is my favorite board game and I've played it 500 times at least (probably more). I do think that the balance becomes less of an issue among the very best players. However if this type of variant might attract more players that would be great for the game.

As was already mentioned by PeteNB, I would also love to see a solution for the first player problem. In my opinion it has a greater impact on the game across the board than the market issue which can be equally leveraged by all players. Again, I'm referring to the highest levels of play but a bad start can make a game almost unwinnable against another good player. Perhaps the market change will mitigate this some?

Anyways, love to see things happening with this game and will always be willing to chat and or test some things.
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