Rules for Thought #35 – Mysterious Island cards and Free Linked Crew

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  • #6704

    Ben
    Keymaster

    Now that the Rules survey has some results (43 responses as of this post), I think it would be a good idea to discuss some various options in detail. I’m starting to run out of topics again so take the survey (if you haven’t already) if you want these threads to continue!

    Feel free to elaborate on any changes to Mysterious Islands that you would have liked to see.

    make the “mysterious island” like a crew card where you can put the island number down on a normal island and still have a card to read the rules of the island.

    I agree completely.  Many times I have been at MI’s where the effects are difficult or impossible to read due to coins and other things on the island.  Even when they’re empty, the islands can be “upside down” requiring a different angle to read them.  Not to mention trying to read fine print in the middle of the table from arm’s length away.  This method could also make the MI’s more versatile/random – as I believe others have suggested in the past, a random d6 roll when docking at the island could determine what card of effects you consult, rather than having the same effects for each island every time throughout the game.

    Are there any changes you would make to the basic crew and linking rules?

    A house rule i sometimes played with is that linked crew not only take up no cargo but also do not count towards the point total.  Can be a bit unfair but really rewards those who collected ships with their link.  The Locker, and the flying dutchman were my favorites to use in these matches!

    This feels like a mess, and there are enough tailor-made links to make it OP.  Victor de Alva on the San Cristobal is OP without any other crew aboard; making him free instead of 8 points would be disastrous.  I understand things like Edward Low on the Locker brings some total point costs more in line with practicality, but it’s not worth it for the OP cases.  I think a more reasonable change would be to have linked crew give the ship +1 cargo AND they don’t take up space.  Although that could be more confusing than the existing rules.

    I think other simple linked crew rules could be fun to experiment with – perhaps +1 to MI rolls like the Ex-Patriot gives, or maybe the linked crew get a free pass when they would have been eliminated via Crew Killing/etc.

    #6745

    Woelf
    Participant

    Randomizing MIs is a very good thing. Beyond just a d6 roll, you could go with a d10 or even a d20 that you roll against a whole chart full of island effects. It would almost completely eliminate any chance of farming for UTs, and would make the islands with game-breaking effects unreliable at best. It would add more randomness to the game, but if you’re already using MIs, you’re probably okay with that.

    Are there any changes you would make to the basic crew and linking rules?

    A house rule i sometimes played with is that linked crew not only take up no cargo but also do not count towards the point total. Can be a bit unfair but really rewards those who collected ships with their link. The Locker, and the flying dutchman were my favorites to use in these matches!

    This feels like a mess, and there are enough tailor-made links to make it OP. Victor de Alva on the San Cristobal is OP without any other crew aboard; making him free instead of 8 points would be disastrous. I understand things like Edward Low on the Locker brings some total point costs more in line with practicality, but it’s not worth it for the OP cases. I think a more reasonable change would be to have linked crew give the ship +1 cargo AND they don’t take up space. Although that could be more confusing than the existing rules.

    Yeah, doing this with the current setup would break things horribly. It’s not a bad idea, but to make it work the whole linking system would need to be tossed out and started over from scratch with the linked pairs designed specifically for this rule change.

    Since there’d really be no downside to always using them together, the easiest solution would be to intentionally make both the ship and the linked crew slightly worse than their non-linked counterparts, so when you did put them together you’d only be slightly ahead of where you’d be by using non-lined equivalents. Maybe the linked pair costs 1-2 points less. If the benefit is too good, it makes the non-linked versions obsolete before they even start, and ultimately would just penalize players for not having a large enough collection to have the linked pairs while rewarding those who spent more money.

    I always did wish that linking would have done more than just add cargo space. All sorts of different small bonuses could have been used instead, like +1 to certain rolls, rerolls, protection from elimination, etc.. It would have made the rules a little more complicated, but listing the specific bonus on one or both of the linked crew would have mostly covered it.

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