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Author Topic: US +2 forced as the new standard?  (Read 7042 times)

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Tbody

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US +2 forced as the new standard?
« on: March 07, 2013, 09:59:05 am »
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I've been playing the game for about 2 months now.  Not a lot of time, but I've managed to fit in nearly 50 games in that amount of time.  I'm ABSOLUTELY enjoying the game.  I remember the first night I discovered Wargameroom, and I couldn't sleep more than an hour after my first few online games just thinking about how I had been bested.  I love playing on the real cardboard, but for some weird reason, when using WGR's basic setup, I feel more plugged into the game.  It feels like I'm at some old computer monitor with text scrolling down the screen like in some scene from Hunt From the Red October.

So that's me.  I love playing as the US.  I think its more fun.  And it's not even close.  Tonight, in the WGR chat, I was randomly asked to play a game.  I said yes.  They asked if it could be US +2.  No problem, I'm thinking, I'll just tell the guy I'll play US as +1 and we'll both happy.  Nope.  This guy's agenda was "pushing the new standard", as set forth by a post he had read by Rikku on BGG. 

My argument was that even if the US might be at a slight disadvantage at +1 (which I'm not endorsing), as I feel its more fun to play (and the other guys agreed with me), why should we push the influence up to US +2.  I mean, if I like to play as the US, and would do with no added influence, why should I risk the chance of getting selected as the Soviet player facing a US player with +2.  That's not a fun game for me. 

Should we be expecting people to push this new standard upon us.  How do others feel about this.  Anyways, I'm a huge fan of the site and love reading the forum posts as well.  Just haven't had a reason to post yet.
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Jayne Starlancer

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2013, 11:44:06 am »
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I think that if players cannot reach an agreement about additional US influence, then no additional US influence should be used. Play the rules as written instead.

The same would go with China Civil War and Optional Cards: if players cannot agree, then default to the rules as written, no Optional Cards.

I would think that players could simply learn to compromise and try new things every so often.
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theory

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2013, 12:24:39 pm »
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That does seem fairly ridiculous.  You can tell him that if he wants US +2, he'll have to let you play US at +2.  If he thinks +2 is fair then he shouldn't have a problem with that.
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SnowFire

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2013, 12:35:47 pm »
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Yeah, if people can't agree on a fair handicap, then the problem is largely fixed by just bidding influence (although when two people disagree on the fair handicap, this has the unfortunate side effect of one person always playing one side).  He thinks US+2 is fair?  Bid for the USSR at +1.  If he truly thinks US +2 is fair, then he should bid for the USSR offering a +2.

Of course, it's also totally different if he's just plain asking for a handicap because he thinks he'll lose too easily without it.  But then be explicit about it!  (No shame in that, better to have an interesting game.)
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Cal

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2013, 03:25:18 pm »
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I am personally of the opinion that the game is balanced as it starts. I don't even like the automatic +1 to the US that Wargame Room gives.

+2 is unnecessary and excessive. If the US is really that disadvantaged then maybe the problem is more than just the influence.
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MarlesChartel

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2013, 03:40:12 pm »
+1

I've been thinking about this scenario: US starts with 2 influence in Iran, USSR starts with 2 in Syria. It mirrors the situation in Asia, where both sides start with presence, but with the USSR having one additional battleground. This start is certainly better for the US than the original, but denies them the opportunity to headline Middle East scoring to get 4 free points.
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theory

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2013, 03:43:49 pm »
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I've been thinking about this scenario: US starts with 2 influence in Iran, USSR starts with 2 in Syria. It mirrors the situation in Asia, where both sides start with presence, but with the USSR having one additional battleground. This start is certainly better for the US than the original, but denies them the opportunity to headline Middle East scoring to get 4 free points.

I like this idea a lot.  I suppose it is easier for USSR to get Domination (since it's otherwise always a major tipoff if the USSR plays into Syria for no reason) but that's not really a huge deal.
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BamBix

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #7 on: March 08, 2013, 04:31:50 am »
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I agree, that seems very reasonable. The problem remains that the first USSR AR: 'Coup Iran with 3 or 4 ops' is almost automatic, and determines almost the entire early war.

Then again, you can just look at the statistics. I think Riku once had very compelling statistics that the US actually wins way more often with the +1 IP.
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Tbody

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #8 on: March 08, 2013, 08:51:25 am »
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Thanks for the responses. 

I like the idea of giving control of Iran/Syria control to the US/Soviet players to sort of add a better sense of balance to the game. 

Sounds like something interesting to experiment with.
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Riku Riekkinen

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #9 on: March 08, 2013, 09:01:47 am »
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Yes, forcing is rarely the right way. Sorry if my comments were used for that. However I do feel that I'm more qualified (&informed) to make assumptions to where the "pro accepted" bid is heading than anyone who posts on the BGG or here. So I said it to the others, since its asked a lot. There was also quite a lot how the bidding (or fixed bids) is currently and how they had been (there was much confusion / disinformation even among experinced players).
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DeDaan

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #10 on: March 11, 2013, 09:25:11 am »
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As I stated earlier this year (in January), in the appropriate forum thread on BGG, my main problem with giving the US additional IP at the start is the possibility of the early Mideast Scoring headline. There I already suggested the USSR +1 IP, US +2 or 3 IP idea to give the USSR the possibility to prevent the immediate 4 VP loss. I prefer this above filling up Syria automatically.

Anyways, basically I agree with Cal that in my opinion (and the stats in the ETSL prove me right so far) no balancing options are needed. However, stats in the tournaments Riku is playing in prove otherwise. Now, what's the explanation of that? Are the players in the ETSL very bad Russian players or very good US players? Or is it just coincidence? Why are the ETSL stats telling me that US results are better when they don't get additional IP than when they get 1? Of course I don't care to put a standard somewhere, but the only "fair" way to go is bidding. Then, a player who thinks playing USSR is worth 3 IP to US (and takes the chance to trail by 4 VP immediately) can bid so.

By the way, I also thought of a variant to do the bidding after dealing the first hand. Would this lead to different situations?
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theory

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #11 on: March 11, 2013, 05:46:53 pm »
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By the way, I also thought of a variant to do the bidding after dealing the first hand. Would this lead to different situations?

Would you know what you're dealt?  And what the other person would be dealt?
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Jack Rudd

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #12 on: March 11, 2013, 07:03:27 pm »
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Of course, the other fair thing to do for tournament play is to do the equivalent of what chess tournaments do: ensure that each player gets a close balance of USSR games and USA games. That way, the effects of one side's being stronger will tend to cancel out.
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DeDaan

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Re: US +2 forced as the new standard?
« Reply #13 on: March 12, 2013, 02:07:19 am »
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By the way, I also thought of a variant to do the bidding after dealing the first hand. Would this lead to different situations?

Would you know what you're dealt?  And what the other person would be dealt?

I would say only your own cards. However, I would be curious how many unformation could be gained by the bids of the other player, knowing your own cards.
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