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Common mistake for new players?


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#1 Svavelvinter

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 07:48 PM

Hello friends.

I am getting set for my first session of Android in about a month and although it might seem over working it a bit to prepare already I really would like my group to love this game.

So my question is quite simple, and not really asked before:

"What are the most common mistakes when no one in the group has played the game before"

ie markers you forget about, VP's to keep track of, how to place clues etc etc.. 



#2 Draconian

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 08:38 PM

Common mistakes?  Okay...

There are so many different kinds of tokens and cards that you should pay careful attention to the Component Overview at the start of the book, and use the proper names of each component.  If people use vague names they could draw the wrong thing by mistake.  Formally introduce to your players each type of counter and its function in the game.

You should also formally introduce each player's Detective, what their current Plot Card is, and special cards.  You may not necessarily have to read out loud the flavor text on every Twilight Card (maybe just their effects will do), but it is helpful to read out loud each Detective back-story, who their NPCs are and how they are involved in the Detective's life, and it is essential to read out the Plot Cards.  Players have to keep straight all their special abilities and limitations on the Plot Cards and Special Cards, and they are face-up, public to all.  Opponents should try to keep it straight too because it is so much fun to mess with another Detective's life.  Feel free to ask to read any of another player's face-up cards.  There will be a lot of game time when you are NOT playing; people may tend to lose interest, but on another player's turn you can:

  • study your Plot Cards and Special Cards, and the Tip Sheet,
  • study an opponent's Plot Cards and Special Cards in play (ask them to pass over the special card and the current Plot Card), and
  • be alert for opportunities to play Dark Cards or use abilities to mess other players up, pouncing at just the right time.  Players must announce each move they are doing, giving a chance for an opponent to break in.  But don't blame the opponent; Dark Cards are bad events tailored to each character, but events are NOT actually caused by another Detective, they are just a set of unfortunate incidents.

Prepare your players for the fact this is NOT a game of Clue with a definite murderer.  The murder is abstract and (like in cyberpunk fiction!) guilt or innocence is ambiguous and unclear.  Maybe the Detectives have a cynical view; it matters little to them who is really guilty, it matters that they look good to their superiors in building a big set of evidence to favor their personal Hunches.  In the course of things they are also exposing evidence of a Conspiracy, but again the corporations are powerful and facts are nebulous as to why exactly they wanted the murder victim dead.  That kind of evidence gives them brownie points and a pat on the head from the NAPD, but depending who's in on the Conspiracy the Detectives efforts might be buried anyway.  And at night they go home and worry about their personal life too; that also gets them "points".  A great example was the TV series ALIEN NATION, which was a balanced blend of buddy-cop detective action and intriguing home life.

The game track tells you to draw certain cards at the end-of-day phase.  Always move the day marker off that day at the end-of-day phase, on to the next day, to reveal what you should do (after the first day:  nothing; after the second day, draw a general event card, etc.).  The single Murder-Specific Card should be drawn at the BEGINNING of the first day of the second week, not at the end.  That's a rules revision from the FFG FAQ 1.0 for ANDROID.   Also the last two days are the Climax; Leads are not booted around to another part of the board but totally removed from play once they are Followed.

It is also important to make up a big chart on chart-paper, viewable by all, with rectangles representing the Suspect cards and 3 rectangles in each card representing the 3 kinds of Evidence on each card.  Each player places Evidence Tokens face-down and should do so in a regular grid-pattern.  Some cards and detective abilities may reveal them.  So, during the game, draw little rectangles representing the Evidence Tokens in the layout they were placed, and note which player (detective) put them down.  If the Evidence Tokens get revealed, you develop an understanding of which Suspects the other players are trying to make more guilty or innocent.  This is a vital clue, and you can consider blocking the other players' efforts by laying down your own contrary Evidence, or setting up Hit Tokens on that Suspect (3 Hit Tokens means a dead suspect, who is neither guilty nor innocent at the end of the game, just dead).

If you land on the same space as Lily Lockwell, she will waste your time for 1 Time, but this will allow you to turn up one Evidence Token face-up (for all to see).  Landing on the same space as Jimmy the Snitch and spending 1 Time allows you to look at any one other player's hand of cards, OR peek at all the facedown evidence on one Suspect Sheet (do NOT show these to another player).  Then these characters must be moved to a location of the same type in a different district, but Lily Lockwell can NEVER share the same space with Jimmy the Snitch.

Also remember that a player may only use a Major Location's ability once per turn.  Be clear on what these abilities are by looking at the explanations on pp. 46-47.  Moving around and landing on a location again in the same turn doesn't let you use the ability again!

Also remember that your NPCs may be killed or events may remove them.  An NPC doesn't have to be alive for flavor text concerning them, but favors can't be collected from a dead or removed NPC.

At the end of the game, in the point-count, remember that the Evidence Tokens from 3 different kinds of Leads (Testimony, Physical or Document) have different strengths on different Suspects.  In the Strong Evidence square, remove the Evidence Tokens with the lowest numerical value (most of the time that's a negative number).  Likewise in the Weak Evidence square, remove the Evidence Tokens with the highest numerical value.  You don't remove just one token from Strong Evidence or Weak Evidence, but ALL tokens of that numerical value.

 



#3 Svavelvinter

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Posted 22 November 2009 - 09:57 PM

WOW !!!  That was impressive..  thanks for all the advice.. 

I will attend this game packed with dual sets of the rulebook and the FAQ so hopefully things would go rather smothly. Also my group has some exprecience playing Arkham Horror so they are somewhat familiar with the complexity and diversity of a Kevin Wilson game. :)

From your response I have a fairly good idea how to explain the game and its mechanics and also what to put the most focus on and also prepare them what to expect. However I will also try to avoid reading all the twilight cards myself to not ruin the surprise.

Again.. thanks for the clarification.. 



#4 Tsugo

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 04:50 AM

Draconian gave some excellent advice, but personally, making a suspect sheet with evidence grids is more work than necessary.  Simply getting new players to understand the concept of strong, normal, and weak evidence is more important.

Scoring can be somewhat nebulous, so it's important to make sure that everyone knows how points can be scored.

Remember that the cost to play twightlight cards can be increased or reduced if they match the border color of the investigator's plot that they are affecting.

Not necessarily a new player mistake, if you can get any of your players to read the rules before your first game would help considerably.



#5 Svavelvinter

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 05:46 AM

Tsugo said:

Scoring can be somewhat nebulous, so it's important to make sure that everyone knows how points can be scored.

Remember that the cost to play twightlight cards can be increased or reduced if they match the border color of the investigator's plot that they are affecting.

I have two main concerns..  one is to remember that several different paths in the conspiracy may double some favors and tokens..  must try to remember that one.. 

Secondly is to match the plot..  I am fairly certain we will forget about that one in the process.. 



#6 Bleached Lizard

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 07:20 AM

 One mistake I've read about people making several times (and it's a biggie) is giving each detective 12 Time at the beginning of each day.  It should, of course, be only 6 Time (barring special abilities).



#7 Svavelvinter

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 07:34 AM

From what I've read on Boardgamegeek and other reviews of the game is to take your time and read through the tip-sheet that come along with the game to get a better understanding how to play each character. Also I am thinking of telling my group that once we have assigned each character that player will play with that detective several times in a row if the like the game in order to get a better grasp how to play the game and also sabotage for the other players.



#8 Draconian

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Posted 23 November 2009 - 01:59 PM

Tsugo said:

Draconian gave some excellent advice, but personally, making a suspect sheet with evidence grids is more work than necessary.  Simply getting new players to understand the concept of strong, normal, and weak evidence is more important.../

 

Players are going to want to remember who laid what Evidence Token, and why so-and-so is laying all these positive numbers on to Dejah Thoris.  Why, it's because she's his Guilty Hunch of course!  It may be important to make a large common diagram of who laid what Token.



#9 Draconian

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Posted 04 January 2010 - 11:53 AM

Draconian said:

Tsugo said:

 

Draconian gave some excellent advice, but personally, making a suspect sheet with evidence grids is more work than necessary.  Simply getting new players to understand the concept of strong, normal, and weak evidence is more important.../

 

 

 

Players are going to want to remember who laid what Evidence Token, and why so-and-so is laying all these positive numbers on to Dejah Thoris.  Why, it's because she's his Guilty Hunch of course!  It may be important to make a large common diagram of who laid what Token.

I should correct myself.  That is:

Players will want to remember who laid down which Evidence Token.  They will *NOT* see the numerical values right away, but some situations allow them to reveal the values on the Evidence Tokens (which can be of value +5 to -4, also blue faces which 0are Surprise Witnesses for -5, or red faces which are Perjury which make a Surprise Witness (or an Alibi Token, which is never hidden) a +5 instead of a -5).

So once the player reveals one or more Evidence Tokens, they will really, REALLY wish they remembered who placed them.  It is valuable and deadly information, since the player can determine what the placer's Guilty or Innocent Hunch is, and counterbalance the evidence or work their way to placing 3 Hit Tokens on a Suspect, rendering the Suspect dead and all Guilty or Innocent Hunches on that Suspect useless.

A big diagram with neatly ordered "parking spaces" in the evidence boxes on each Suspect Card will help players do that.  Compared to all the time you spend setting up the board, it's quick to do and not too much trouble to note down.  An easel with chart paper and a marker would be ideal.



#10 Hein99

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 03:32 AM

Wow Draconian! These are some great details. I will definately refer to this thread when I get a chance to play my first game of Android.
And good additions everyone!


-Hein99 (aka The SegaDude)
TheSegaCollection





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