Merchants and Marauders: Help Me With This Game!

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Dave had a really bad game of Merchants  and  Marauders. The problem is that he knows it is a popular game  and  well loved. So what went wrong with his game? Can you help Dave make his next game better?

Merchants  and  Marauders: http://amzn.to/2vqvvr0

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Comments

Mike Jonez says:

My first game I went pirate and another went merchant and we tied on glory points at the end and they beat my by 4 gold. Second game both went merchant and we both tied at 10 glory points and I lost by 10 gold. I had lots of fun, the games were always close. You must be doing something else horribly wrong with your strategy. If you are a merchant always still go for rumors and mission every time you can, because when you complete it you get a glory point. Also buy the Galleon, because you get a stronger ship, and hold 5 goods, and get a glory point. Also use your glory cards. Always have a plan b on yours turn, also if your seamanship is 3 or 4 and the pirate is only 2 attack it. You will most likely win you get gold and a glory point.

NICK Van DAM says:

My question for you is what sort of story did it paint for the players characters on the board? I'm interested in the game, but more for the thematic/story it creates than for finding the optimal way to dominate and manipulate the mechanics involved. Certainly I will try to play my best, but with a game that has this much chance (card draws, randomized tile placement, and dice rolling, there I expect the better players to win the majority of the games not every game, so I'm interested in if it creates a fun narrative)

Has this happened for you or the others playing?
Thanks

shea bitner says:

You don't need to do both to enjoy the game at all. I wind up being a marauder 90% of the time and have a great time losing to my daughter's who play as merchant ships 90% of the time. Yes some mechanics and rules are fiddly and sometimes you may miss some. However what makes this game truly great is that you don't know how your luck will go. Strategy and skill will get you a long way but sometimes luck and the dice just aren't on your side. In my opinion this is one of the best board games out there and the absolute best pirate themed game. In one game you just are barely scratching the surface of what it has to offer. I hope you get a chance to play again and see that that there are untapped treasures to be found. Best of luck and avoid scurvy 😁

Samuel Lehouiller says:

I guess I hear what you are saying, which is totally fine. But this is probably my favorite board game. I've played with the same three people probably between 15-20 times and hold upwards of a 85% win record playing BOTH as a merchant and as a marauder (was pretty upset you said trader and pirate, like the roles are the games title.) moving on…. yea sometimes luck isn't with you but from what you've told us you stuck to like a small portion of the board. In all of my games I've won I maybe didn't go to 2places. Like you talked about trading toward your rumor is exact what you have to do. Even if you don't have the required things you need to move toward "guarenteed" glory points in rumors/mission, even if they're not in your starting role bc you can get lucky and win. If you don't get two of a good you need to offload it immediately at the next port if that in demand good is opposite of your rumor/mission. You have to be proactive at all times.

Also ur point about NPCs yes they're a little dull but try being a marauder haha. Life can really really suck and it makes things quite difficult but interesting. Along with this point you stated the board was quite dull sometimes with the storm and what not. With that expansion the game has plenty of extra things, Favors specifically, that would have helped with your merchanting ability and let you draw a whole new 6 cards at port. And yes the storm can be annoying but if you're not a pirate getting hit by the storm to speed off to another port is the least of your worries just repair up bc if you're a trader you're never ever short of gold unless it's turn 1 and you buy and upgrade and rumor

Nikolai Starkweather says:

Might be very late, but I gave this serious thought. I just purchased the game and only have a few under my belt. It's a good, tho slow, game.

Not to be rude, but are you sure you were not playing to conservative? Did you take advantage of your port abilities?

Some ports allow for more cargo draws or to redraw. This increases the chances for drawing 3 of a kind to get that vict…glory point.

Caracas, Nassau, St Maarten and Santo Domingo all have abilities effecting goods. St M, and Cara draw more on a buy action, thus increasing the chances of drawing the ever holy three of a kind, but are to the east of most of the ports. Santo costs a gold but you redraw your goods available to buy, but you are also centrally located and can get to other ports easily. Nassau offers reduced prices for goods but is way north west of every other port.

As a merchant, I think you need to hit these ports up as much as possible. You should seek routs that bring you to those ports or very close to them.

I think, again I'm not trying to be rude or anything, it sounds like you were looking for just the right combinations of cards and sea routes. You waited for optimal loads and routes that never developed.

This game seems to reward the adventurous and risky. Maybe taking those risky trips to the other side of the board, through pirate waters would have seen you better off in victory…glory…points.

For one thing, it sounds like you spent alot of time in port. Getting out there would have reduced your dead time. Granted you would have been a target and attacked, but you would have been playing. And if you fend off attacks you still gain glory.

It sounds to me like all you really need is to get more involved in this game. It's very much a "you get what you put into it" type of thing.

That's how I see it. I may be wrong, and usually am. 🙂

RPGguy1979 says:

Played it once so far with 2 people, horrible manual (at least the german translation was). I went pirate, my brother went merchant. You do realize that you get glory points for every 10 gold you have in your chest?

Eduard says:

You ordered Steak and Potatoes and only ate the spuds my dude.

crazy Old maurice says:

Also combat is not difficult. You roll seamanship and decide what you are going to do (shoot, board etc). Whoever has more successes wins. That winner then rolls to see what area of the ship is hit. Pretty simple.

crazy Old maurice says:

This is an amazing game. You need to try it again. I disagree with 90% of your criticism. You need to be creative with a combination of strategies to win. Maybe losing by 9 points put a sour taste in your mouth?

Nerfenstein aka GirlyGamer says:

This is meant to be a really good game and you made it sound utter crap lol. It's off my wants list now. I have no idea how you can improve it other than not playing it again and playing a different pirate themed game.

paxton73 says:

I had a problem with PvP combat. Just overly complicated. Could of been made much easier.

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