Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Taming the Collection

With my first offspring soon on the way I've been trying to trim back the collection a lot.  I still want to play some games with my wife in the next few years, but maybe I'm just trying to be more realistic.  In particular, I don't see new, long & complicated games getting played.  Although, there is a silver lining.  I do get to move a few games classified as "Kids games" into the play room.

So in my current collection, there is only one game I haven't played.  That would be Amun-Re.  I'm thinking about trying it out with some family this weekend.  But I have a conundrum.

I believe the stupid bid-bounce mechanic would drive me nuts.  If you're outbid, then you *have* to bid on something else.  I realize this might encourage higher initial bids, but it almost sounds like a random event to determine what province you actually end up with in 5 players.

And the thing is, I've played Vegas Showdown many times.  It's a very solid game.  And it works by allowing re-bids on the same item.  So does Homesteaders.  So why does Amun-Re need this annoying mechanic?  I don't usually like house-ruling respected games, but what would happen if you allow re-bids?

Well, I know a couple power cards would need removed, but only a couple.  Other than that, would it really break anything?

Grr, we'll see if I get it to the table, and then we'll see if re-bids are allowed in the end...


  1. Disallowing re-bidding is not 'annoying' - it's the whole point of the auction! It really makes you bid the right amount in the first place, and there is nothing random about which province you get.

    If you like auction games where you can bid low on what you want and hope to get it at a bargain because noone outbid you, then Amun-Re might not be for you. The mechanism forces you to make a real bid by really punishing you for underbidding when you get outbid.

    There is a power card that allows you to rebid, so if you get that you could try to be a cheapskate, knowing you could use the card to re-bid on the same auction (in fact, you could bait someone into overbidding you but underbidding overall, then surprise them with that power card!).

    In Homesteaders you can take debt, so there's theoretically infinite money. You can re-bid in that game because the focus is different - it allows you to consider whether you are willing to take debt when someone outbids you... it's still good to make the 'correct' bid first, but since you can always take debt you can always afford to bid up. I think Alex has written something about that somewhere - maybe on BGG? If not, maybe that would be a good question to ask him!

  2. I'm still not sold on Homesteaders or Vegas Showdown being any different.

    I perfectly understand the tension of having to bid high since you cannot rebid. It just seems to not entirely be like an auction then. In Vegas Showdown or Homesteaders you often bid up the other players just to make sure they don't get anything too cheap. Why would that not work in Amun-Re?

    I'll probably play it as written first, but I really don't see what distinguishes the bidding parts of it from the other games mentioned.


Behave. Your mamma could read this.