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Seeker vs. Trader


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#1 Jegras

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Posted 12 June 2010 - 03:59 PM

So my friends and I were playing a game earlier and we got into an argument about what happens when the Trader wants to trade with the Seeker. The situation was that I, the Trader, was asked "are you planning on playing an attack card higher than 10?" to which I answered yes. When I then attempted to trade hands with the Seeker he told me that I couldn't do it, because he had no attack cards higher than 10, which would therefore make it impossible for me to abide by the terms of his question. I thought that the Seeker's power had an implied "if possible" in it, but they decided I couldn't trade because I had to "take every action possible to remain in the terms of the question".

 

I looked in the FAQ and didn't see anything Seeker-specific. Does anyone have an idea what would happen in this situation?

 

 



#2 The Warp

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Posted 13 June 2010 - 06:09 AM

Seeker's power doesn't stop Trader from using his power.



#3 Zomber

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Posted 13 June 2010 - 06:57 AM

It's as you said, the Seeker has an 'if possible' clause written right on his power description.   Sometimes through other game effects, it's just not possible to fufill your yes/no answer .



#4 Adam

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Posted 01 October 2010 - 06:01 AM

In the old editions, it was illegal to say what's in your hand.  I still apply that rule, personally, but even without it, you don't know that he is telling the truth.  Trader can of course trade his hand with Seeker.  You do not have to insure your answer will hold true by any means possible.  It just has to be possible at the time the question is answered.  



#5 Rashley

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Posted 03 October 2010 - 10:00 PM

I agree that answering Seekers' question only has to be truthful at the time of asking.  If your hand changes after that, and you cannot do what you state, you can play anything.  What did surprise me was Adams' statement that old editions said it was illegal to say what was in your hand.  I remember nothing like that from my old original Eon set.  Half the fun of Cosmic is the bluffing aspect and knowing who and when to trust.  Asking a player if they had a Compromise - sorry Negotiate now - for a possible Deal, was very prevelant.  Trying to 'read' a player when they say "I have a 20 and I know my oppenent has a 20, so we can win if you ally with me" is a great skill and much would be lost if that aspect was disallowed.  How do you stop people discussing their, or other players' strengths and weaknesses?  You have to trust honesty in the Seeker instance above, but losing all the other bluffing aspects would harm the game. Cheers!



#6 Just_a_Bill

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Posted 04 October 2010 - 04:37 AM

Adam might have misspoken or misremembered.  To the best of my memory, the rule pretty much has always been that you can say whatever you want (even lying), but you can't show your cards unless a particular effect allows or requires it.  This is why Avalon Hill and FFG both added the stipulation to Mind that you cannot tell the other players what you see ... otherwise it would be legal to do so.

Adam, if I'm wrong please cite your source.  I'm happy to be corrected.



#7 Adam

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 03:11 PM

http://redamedia.com/warp/files/ceerules.pdf

Page 2.  First complete sentence.

They [the players] may not show these cards [their hands] to the other players or communicate what they have.

In other words... booyah. 

As for the stipulation for Mind, I'm not sure I'd attribute much to that.  Eon later created a game called Dune in which the Emperor's alliance power was to allow him to give spice to other players -- but everyone can do that already.  This text was just added as a reminder, not to imply some earlier rule was a mistake.

I believe the Mind text serves a similar purpose, and it looks like they did well to add it since so many people don't remember the initial secrecy clause, haha.  Plus, as you pointed out, this was in every edition but the Eon edition (that I've played, at least -- Eon, AH, CEO, and FFG), and only the Eon edition had the rule enforcing card secrecy, so it was pointless in that edition to have the extra Mind text, thus explaining why it was added in later editions.

I've pointed this rule out to many a long-time Eon player in my comparatively short Cosmic career (I've been encountering aliens only since the Avalon Hill edition, though I did at one point play the Eon version a few times), and it's surprising how many do not remember this rule ever existing.  In fact, I don't think I've ever talked to anyone who knew the rule.

I could see why some people would like to ignore the rule, but my personal preference is to pretend that the rule still exists in all forms of play.  I don't like being able to plan a deal.  That seems somehow cheap to me.  And I don't like being able to say what's in my hand, because cards change hands often, and it would annoy some players if someone with a big yap gave away a card they were hoping to bluff with or whatever.  Of course, you can lie, but I prefer to save that kind of treacherous play for Dune.  And perhaps even worse, some people play games with complete honesty. 

Just to clarify, I know the rule isn't in FFG's version, but I house rule it in. 



#8 Just_a_Bill

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Posted 06 October 2010 - 04:53 AM

Adam said:

Page 2.  First complete sentence.

They [the players] may not show these cards [their hands] to the other players or communicate what they have.

Well, I'll be dipped in Filth. It doesn't get any more authentic than that.  I stand corrected, sir!

Adam said:

I've pointed this rule out to many a long-time Eon player in my comparatively short Cosmic career (I've been encountering aliens only since the Avalon Hill edition, though I did at one point play the Eon version a few times), and it's surprising how many do not remember this rule ever existing. In fact, I don't think I've ever talked to anyone who knew the rule.

I guess that makes me feel a little better, but still ... now I'm wondering how long it's been since I actually played Eon correctly.

Adam said:

I could see why some people would like to ignore the rule, but my personal preference is to pretend that the rule still exists in all forms of play. I don't like being able to plan a deal. That seems somehow cheap to me.

I agree.  It's much more fun to play using subtle suggestions rather than just coming right out and saying "I'll play my Negotiate if you play yours."  Where's the mystery, the risk, the finesse?



#9 Rashley

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 01:28 AM

I think I may have the solution to the 'card communication' issue raised by Adam.  It appears the original rules were amended sometime after it first came out.  I have to admit that I was going on memories from 1978 and that Adam could prove his point.  However, digging out my very original Eon rules from 1978, I can confirm that there was NO mention of not being able to 'say' what you had.  The Game Preparation part 6 states each player is dealt 7 cards (now 8 of course) keep them as their hand and do not show them to other players. No mention anywhere of non-communication.  Then I looked up Eons 1983 version 'The Complete Book of Cosmic Encounter Rules' to cover all the rules added in the 9 expansions.  Lo and behold, there I see, and completely overlooked my me, at the same part as before:- they may not show these cards to other players or communicate what they have.  A suble but significant addition.  Well spotted Adam!

As it appears that FFG have not added this rule, it appears we are back to square one.  As long as all players agree, any house rules can be applied, but isn't it difficult to change after 32 years!  I still call things tokens, bases, compromises and edicts, but I am trying hard to play the FFG version way.  At least we all agreed about the Seeker v Trader from the original query. Cheers!



#10 Adam

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 01:59 AM

Ah, good find!  That I didn't know.  I believe I used to have the original rulebook, too.  Odd that they'd slip a little rule change like that in their final expansion (that rulesheet is from expansion 9).  Perhaps that's why later editions didn't include it, as they were looking more closely at the original rules?  I wonder.  At the very least it explains why I've been met with such surprise every time I've mentioned the rule to long-time fans of the game.



#11 Just_a_Bill

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Posted 07 October 2010 - 03:23 AM

Good sleuthing, guys.  It's a weird kind of cool and distressing that three decades later we are still learning how to play this game.

It might make an interesting thread topic to collect all the "minor rules" that people tend to overlook. Another one I see missed is the rule that you never use the last destiny disc/card (because destiny is not supposed to be predictable).  This rule exists in Eon, AH, and FFG, but not in Mayfair (presumably because you don't know whether the last destiny card is an actual Destiny card or just a Comet).



#12 Kobold Curry Chef

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Posted 11 October 2010 - 08:21 AM

I always forget the "last destiny" rule, too.  In fact, yesterday while playing, I recollected it, but then thought I was misremembering it!  But there it is, in the rulebok...d'oh.

Bill, I think a "minor rules" thread would be a great idea.






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