Tuesday, 21 October 2008

money is but dirt in Tribune

I continue to enjoy playing Tribune, despite most of my games being just 2 player games against Michelle. One tendency that we see in our games is we treat money as dirt. As the Chinese saying goes, 视钱财如粪土, literally translated as "considering money as wealth to be excrement and mud". Among the various victory conditions, we tend to leave money to be the last condition to fulfill. Getting the Tribune tile and getting the Favour of the Gods tile are usually the highest priority, because these are often the most difficult to achieve. Money always ends up to be the means to an end, to be used for acquiring cards to achieve the other victory conditions. However in fact money should be one of the victory conditions to be kept in mind.

Possibly one way to improve our game is to manage money better, to try not to spend too much, and to plan ahead better to fulfill this victory condition. There were a few times when I had fulfilled all other victory conditions, and then in order to amass enough money to fulfill the last victory condition, I had to spend one more round to place almost all my pawns on the coin bowl. That felt rather silly, and seems to me a reflection of poor planning. I wonder whether this is normal.

In this game I managed to get 4 leaders (the cards with value 0) and used them to win over their factions. Needless to say, I won this game comfortably.

Perhaps the money victory condition only becomes more important (or unavoidable) in 2-player games. When playing with more players, the number of victory conditions that you need to fulfill in order to win the game decreases. So you can completely ignore money if you choose to do so. In games with more players, money becomes an option for players who are not successful in competing in other types of victory conditions. An alternate path to victory. And that's a good thing.

But I guess since I tend to play 2-player games, I will need to remind myself: "Show me the money!!"

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