Jorge Zhang

Personal website

More Rule Testing

Hello everyone! The other day I ran a successful playtest with a couple of rules I hadn’t tried before.

  • Players could not chat with teachers that had another player’s rec in them.
  • Players could purchase clubs from other players (but would not gain the immediate effect)
  • Palprinic was -4 instead of -3
  • Tyroshi was draw 2 pick 1 instead of draw 3 pick 1

First, what didn’t go so well. Palprinic was completely ignored the entire game as at -4 his cost was too high to make it worth it. In a previous playtest, Palprinic had been relatively abusable at -3. However, reflectively I don’t think this was as big as a problem as I initially thought because this strategy can be countered by other players having a lot of Friends to buy up the clubs being put out by Palprinic. Alternatively, with the new rule allowing players to buy other people’s clubs, it is even easier to stop a runaway leader who has a lot of clubs.

And actually, that’s about it. There was a lot of swingy action in the game, and almost everyone had a turn to be in the lead. And right at the end, the one player who had been behind the entire game ended up winning by surprising everyone with his high valued Essay score! In the after-game discussion, two of the players who were in the lead before the end-game reflected that they had been too worried about each other and thus ruined each other’s chances to win by stealing clubs back and forth. This is a good sign that the stealing club mechanic is a solid change!

I was mixed on preventing players from chatting with teachers that had Recs in them, but ultimately I think it is good because it gives players a better reason to obtain Recs early. It was actually very relevant in this game since one player was missing a crucial 1 Happiness that would have netted him 3 RP. Having the Hesling rec would have allowed him to have a better shot at winning the game.

I was initially mixed on the Tyroshi change, but now I think it is a good addition. Before the change, players would loop through the entire Influence deck relatively easily (even though the deck is 22 cards right now!). This change makes Tyroshi slightly worse, but ultimately made the Influence card deck more important to draw from in order to get the influence card needed.

Some changes that continued to work very well were drafting as well as the new essay mechanic. Both of these players unanimously enjoyed, and said that it added a lot more strategic depth. Let me know what you think in the comments, and make sure to subscribe if you enjoy this content!

© 2020 Jorge Zhang