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El Mariachi

What niche does this fill?

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Hi all,

Just a quick question regarding Rex as I'm possibly considering getting it in the future. What niche does this fill? By that I mean, in what situations would you bust Rex out for? I've heard the game works best with 6 players; but if I have 6 players available for a game why would I want to choose Rex over Twilight Imperium? Is it a quicker game by any chance? To be honest it's looks really interesting anyway so I'll probably be picking it up at some point anyway but I thought it would be best to see what you guys thought first.

Cheers,

 

El

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El Mariachi said:

 

What niche does this fill?

 

 

The "people who want to see Dune reprinted and don't mind if it gets a re-theme and a few rules changes along the way, especially considering the Herbert estate apparently won't sell the rights to have it done as Dune" niche. =P

Seriously, though, I would classify the game as a political war game.  There's fighting involved, but most of the action is politically motivated by the players and how they interact.

El Mariachi said:

 

I've heard the game works best with 6 players; but if I have 6 players available for a game why would I want to choose Rex over Twilight Imperium? Is it a quicker game by any chance?

 

Is it quicker?  Very.  Twilight with 6 takes a good 6 hours, in my experience.  Even when everyone knows what they're doing.  Rex takes about 2 hours, tops.  Maybe 3 if you have to constantly explain rules to newbies.

That aside, however, the two games are entirely different, except for their setting.  Twilight Imperium is an epic, fleet-scale game of galactic domination whose progression generally depends on what objective cards come up.  Rex is a unit-scale game territory control, with a healthy dose of inter-player economy to keep things interesting.

In TI3, betrayal is possible, but not usually encountered (again, in my experience) unless it's necessary for one player to pull ahead and win.  In Rex, betrayal is par for the course.  Not only are there rules that allow for your opponent's leaders to turn traitor, but there are (optional) rules to assist players in betraying an alliance at the end of the game, so you can play for the win together and then pull the rug out from under your friends' feet after the deal is done!  The inability to trust anyone (even your own allies) is very much a part of the Rex experience.

BTW: The reason Rex plays best with 6 is because that way there are more actual players to interact with throughout the game.  A large portion of the game is placed in the players' hands to let them do with as they see fit.  This isn't a game where you just follow the rules and try to come out on top; this is a game where you MAKE the rules, and do so to your own advantage.  Every faction (of the 6 in the game) which isn't present for a particular play is that much more control taken out of the players' hands and left to the rulebook to decide.

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 I think FFG should hire you Steve-O, that was quite the successful sales pitch!

In all seriousness, that's got me really interested. Even though my gaming group and I like long Twilight Imperium games (in fact, in October we're planning a 6 player session that we want to last as long as possible- 14 point victory, all the optional rules except space mines and simulated early turns), I don't have a 6 player game that could be played in Rex's time scale except for BSG (which is great, but a very different kind of game).

I'll probably look into picking this up at some point!

 

Cheers,

 

El

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Rex definitely fills the Political/Diplomacy style niche.  If you like games that require reading people and a little cunning and intrigue this is a quality game.  If you can get into the theme as well it adds to the flavor of the game.  2-3 hrs (closer to 3) for gameplay if everyone has already read the rules thoroughly.

It is nothing like Twilight imperium for gameplay other than some race issues.  It will help with theme, but that is all.  People who play TI for the 3X (4X?) gameplay may not like Rex.

 

Die hard Dune players who are stuck on Dune may not like Rex, but Dune players who play for the gameplay and like the theme will definitely like Rex.

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 I would add one question to the above… What do you think about Rex as a Family Board Game? I ma thinking of getting it for the family to play. Are their any themes in Rex that might prevent it from being a good round table family game? I am not really familiar with Dune or Twilight.

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That very much depends on the age of the family members, I'd say. Smaller kids would probably not like the backstabbing. Older kids (teens and up) would probably be more likely to enjoy it. Also, the rules can be somewhat complex and could possibly be too hard for younger kids to grasp. For the extended family, however, it could probably be quite entertaining. Provided that they at least have some ptevious experience with the hobby. And they don't hold grudges… In my oppinion at least.

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I concur with Fnoffen.  The amount of deception, second-guessing and outright lying involved in playing this game would make it a bad choice for younger kids, IMHO.  There's no particularly objectionable content, it's just that young kids would probably have a hard time understanding why it's "okay" to do most of the stuff this game has you doing to one another.  A lot of the stuff that's legal in this game "feels like" cheating in a standard board game.

Older kids or a group of adults may or may not like it depending on personal taste.  It basically boils down to how much distrust they can tolerate in a game.  If you're not sure how your family would react to this game, I would recommend starting with something else, like Betrayal at House on the Hill or Battlestar Galactica.  If they enjoy those games (particularly the treacherous aspects thereof) then they might also enjoy Rex [ / Dune.]

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While I have yet to play Battlestar Galactica, I agree with Steve-O that Betrayal at House on the Hill would be a better place to start.

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