Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Fix'it for Dummies - Trajan

The second entry for Fix'it for Dummies is...

Fix'it Number One – Play an Equal Turns Game

Original Rule:
Game ends when the time track marker reaches or crosses the start space after the 4th round of the 4th quarter ( End of the year )

New Rule:
The time track marker reaching or crossing the start space after the 4th round of the 4th quarter signifies the end of the game. Players are given a last turn until it comes back to the original starting player.
( If start player triggers the end of game, all other players get one last turn. If second player triggers the end of the game, all other players after the second player get a last turn except the start player )
In short, play till everyone has had an equal number of turns.

See final reason below ( after Fix’it Number Two )

Fix'it Number Two – Different Starting Benefits / Position

Original Rule:
All players start with equal standing / resources

New Rule:
Start player starts as per basic game setup. Subsequent players get additional benefits as follows:
2nd Player – One additional resource / shipping card ( randomly drawn from top of deck )
3rd Player – One additional worker in the military camp
4th Player – One additional worker in the construction camp
( Benefits do not stack ! 4th Player does not get one card + one worker in both camps )

The two fix’its were introduced so as to reduce the start player advantage I found was pretty prevalent in Trajan.
It may not always be true, but in most of my games at least, the winner tends to be either the start player or the second player in turn order. Very seldom does the last player ( especially in a 4 player game ) end up victorious. And I believe the reason is that the start player ( sometimes also the second player ) tends to get 1 more additional turn than the others at the table.
It may only be one extra turn, but near the end of the game, one turn in Trajan can easily net a player 10 points or even more. And that can be the difference between victory and third place ( maybe ).
After instilling either of the 2 fix’its, I found that the balance is better and everyone can be equally competitive. And I actually had a last player ( 4 player game ) come out victorious instead.

** Please do note, Fix’it 1 and 2 must not be used simultaneously ! It’s one or the other.

I personally prefer Fix’it 1 when I am playing with experienced players.
Fix’it 2 is great for players new to the game as it gives them a small goal / route to follow and it also helps them psychologically as they may feel that they have a better starting position.



Although it is called "Fix'it for Dummies", it is by no means me saying that:
1) the game is broken, or
2) you are a dummy
It is neither of the above. It is just house rule(s) that I use when I play the game as I find that it increases my enjoyment of the game, or makes it a whole lot more interesting. :) 


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