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Conza89

5 Player rebalanced

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Hi all, I'm Conza this is my first post here, I've been fortunate enough to play TI4 three times now.

Both of the even numbered player configurations prescribed I think are good and I've played one 6 player game and two 4 player, I personally prefer 4 player, but both worked.

One of my friends (Friend A) wanted to play another 6 player game, another friend (B) thought 6 would take too long again and suggested 5 player, the another friend (C) didn't like how the 5 player map was configured, which I agreed, but I thought it might be interesting to try 5, so wanted to 'fix' the stock map.

Friend (C) pointed out the flaws pretty well, referring to the below colours, players red and green had a significant advantage of extra systems, players blue and purple were about in the middle but player grey was royally disenfranchised. The 2 and 4 trade goods doesn't seem to balance it out either as Red and Green will be able to refresh their systems over and over, systems can have techs and traits, etc.

So here is the Conza 5 Player Config below. Comparing left as stock to right as my config, I remove the top tile because Red and Green seemed to have too many systems and this would just to go one of them, but the biggest and most obvious change was to move the Blue and Purple home systems up 1 tile. This means Red, Green, Blue and Purple now have 4 systems within reach, and Grey now has a 2nd tile between both Blue and Purple from all three of its home system tiles on four sides.

But I thought, since it isn't quite perfect, despite in total all 5 players could get to a possible 6 systems (blanks, super novas, asteroids withstanding), I'll give grey 2 trade goods still, that's enough for a couple of extra fighters, or ground troops to help them expand.

Please give me your feedback, hope it's useful if you were considering playing a 5 player game, either intentionally or an extra to a 4 player, one of the 6 drops out.

I'll hopefully be playing it myself in early February, the next game I'm playing is another 4 player which seems really good, but looking forward to a 5 game later as well.

I did find another image on the internet of a map to start my drawings with, and the trade good pictures are taken straight from the rules reference pictures.

5 Player Conza config.png

Edited by Conza89

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19 hours ago, aermet69 said:

Looks similar to what we have done. I don't quite get why you'd give Grey more resources though, as he is further away from both sides. I like the removal of the top tile though, that seems to make sense.

Yeah the rationale is that everyone gets to have 4 systems next door except Grey, maybe it wouldn't matter if Grey gets their entire corridoor to Mecatol Rex (7 systems including their home one).

4 hours ago, IndyBart said:

https://imgur.com/a/i0oyQ

 

This topic has come up on BGG as well and this is what my group does for 5 player games. Everyone has a home system that is 2 spaces away from the next person and no TG's are given out. It's more like playing on a cone than playing on a disk.

Wow now that's a pretty neat solution too, a warp system, essentially detaching the even numbered player and their systems, the warp system stitches up the gap, leaving the map basically perfectly even.

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1 hour ago, Conza89 said:

Wow now that's a pretty neat solution too, a warp system, essentially detaching the even numbered player and their systems, the warp system stitches up the gap, leaving the map basically perfectly even.

Exactly... makes for a very tidy even map.

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ZqKurzR.jpg

What about moving one position closer to Mecatol Rex, but block the direct path with a supernova?

Everyone has a distance of 3 to both their neighbhours. EXCEPTION: the two upper players have a distance of 4 between them. That's quite significant and could be improved upon.

Everyone has four tiles that's closest to them.

Most have 4 tiles that are contested. EXCEPTION: left and right both have 3 contested tiles.  This is probably not a major issue. A quick fix would be to add a tile?

zNWcvds.jpg

There. Now the map should be balanced except the distance between the two upper players. And it looks funny :P

I'll quit now before I ruin it further :)  Conza89: Let me know if you take offense in my fiddling with your map.

Thanks for map!

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On 26/01/2018 at 11:47 PM, Argor said:

ZqKurzR.jpg

What about moving one position closer to Mecatol Rex, but block the direct path with a supernova?

Everyone has a distance of 3 to both their neighbhours. EXCEPTION: the two upper players have a distance of 4 between them. That's quite significant and could be improved upon.

Everyone has four tiles that's closest to them.

Most have 4 tiles that are contested. EXCEPTION: left and right both have 3 contested tiles.  This is probably not a major issue. A quick fix would be to add a tile?

zNWcvds.jpg

There. Now the map should be balanced except the distance between the two upper players. And it looks funny :P

I'll quit now before I ruin it further :)  Conza89: Let me know if you take offense in my fiddling with your map.

Thanks for map!

Hey don't worry about modifying the map, that's all I was doing after all anyway. You're actually doing exactly what I wanted which is to discuss the original 5 player map, and provide the community with alternatives, so now there's another alternative in case someone didn't like mine.

I see what you mean with the distance though, on mine they're all players are 3 tiles apart, but yours has moved the lower and middle players closer together again, which I suppose I agree with your self critique there.

The modification I'd suggest is just removing the supernova and moving them back down to the lower sector again, grey are then given an extra potential system, but so are the middle and upper players with that system that sticks out, grey will have a much harder time getting to either of those. Then I suppose you wouldn't give grey the extra trade goods, either way.

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True but the chances of actually being the Muatt in that specific spot is only 1.17% if my calculations are correct.

And it would be easy to omit the Embers altogether when playing with this specific map or simply bar them from that specific spot.

Or just let them have it. If you're that lucky you kinda deserve that advantage.

Another possibility would be to invent a new type of Special System: "Singularity Cluster: A group of Black Holes that by some random event have ended up right next to each other. The effect of that many singularities in one sector is that the gravitational pulls all cancel each other out. Impassable by any means and does not count when checking for gravitation bonuses to movement."

Edited by Fnoffen
for elaboration

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3 hours ago, Fnoffen said:

True but the chances of actually being the Muatt in that specific spot is only 1.17% if my calculations are correct.

And it would be easy to omit the Embers altogether when playing with this specific map or simply bar them from that specific spot.

Or just let them have it. If you're that lucky you kinda deserve that advantage.

Another possibility would be to invent a new type of Special System: "Singularity Cluster: A group of Black Holes that by some random event have ended up right next to each other. The effect of that many singularities in one sector is that the gravitational pulls all cancel each other out. Impassable by any means and does not count when checking for gravitation bonuses to movement."

I think it's actually 5.8%. Drawing 5 random races from a pool of 17 gives the odds of 29.4% of choosing the Embers. Divided by 5 for placement gives 5.8%.

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33 minutes ago, Husker949 said:

You would also only draw 3 from the pool of 17 since it would give all 5 players 3 races and just discard 2 of them.

The odds work out the same.

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Nope. 3.53% with 3 races drawn.

Anyway, the actual figures was not the important thing, my point was that the probability of drawing (and choosing) the Embers AND ending up in that specific spot is VERY SMALL.

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1 hour ago, Fnoffen said:

Nope. 3.53% with 3 races drawn.

Anyway, the actual figures was not the important thing, my point was that the probability of drawing (and choosing) the Embers AND ending up in that specific spot is VERY SMALL.

I don't get your math here. At the end of the day, you have 5 races on the board of out 17. That's 6,188 possible combinations. Of those, 1,820 of them have the Embers; this is irrespective of how they are drawn, just a hypergeometric distribution of having 1 success in a sample of 5 given 1 success in a population of 17. Next, given 5 races and 5 starting locations, there's 120 combinations (just permute 5 choose 5). 24 feature the Embers in that specific location. Thus, the probability that the Embers are on the board and in a specific starting location is (24/120)*(1820/6188) = 0.0588 = 5.88%.

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My math is not the point I'm trying to make but I'll explain anyway.

Every player draws, say, 3 of the 17 races. That gives a 3/17 or approx. 17,6% chance to draw the Embers. Then that player must also be lucky enough to get seated at that specific place which is 1/5 or 20%. 20% of 17,6% gives 17,6/5=3,53% for any one player to get seated in that specific spot as the Embers of Muatt!

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29 minutes ago, Fnoffen said:

My math is not the point I'm trying to make but I'll explain anyway.

Every player draws, say, 3 of the 17 races. That gives a 3/17 or approx. 17,6% chance to draw the Embers. Then that player must also be lucky enough to get seated at that specific place which is 1/5 or 20%. 20% of 17,6% gives 17,6/5=3,53% for any one player to get seated in that specific spot as the Embers of Muatt!

Ah I see. Your stats, I think, have two flawed assumptions. The first is that any player who receives the Embers of Muatt will choose the Embers. If you're trying to game the system to get an advantageous spot, then yes, they would, and your assumption holds. But if it doesn't, you are also not taking into account that the other players will be drawing 12 races, and the Embers could very well be in one of those selections, and could also very well end up being assigned, or specifically chosen, to this advantageous spot.

I agree the math is irrelevant; but a 5% chance is still quite significant, I feel, to warrant revising the system to avoid this.

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As I've said, and you've agreed with it, the exact percentage is totally beside the point of my comment. The point was that statistically, it shouldn't happen more often than once in every 20 games or so that a player would get seated at that specific part of the board while playing the Embers on this specific 5-player map.

However, I also DID make a suggestion for a new kind of red-bordered system to take the place of the Supernova for this specific map, which would make the entire probability debate moot since not even the Muatt would be able to travel through that system.

Edited by Fnoffen
for elaboration

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Again, if you wanted to play with the configuration, I'd say forget the whole idea of the blocking path, the grey on that map have it pretty hard already.

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On 1/24/2018 at 8:27 AM, aermet69 said:

Looks similar to what we have done. I don't quite get why you'd give Grey more resources though, as he is further away from both sides. I like the removal of the top tile though, that seems to make sense.

Exactly. The Grey seems to be in a better position while the other players have a rival right next to them. Now we all know you can't exactly have an easy time dividing 6 by five.

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