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TOPIC: Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex)

Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 04:28 #236608

By the way, I'm curious. What rules do you use while playing the game? Do you use double spice blow? Do you consider this harms the Fremen? Do you allow Truthtrace to be exploited to hell and back by making it binding?
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 05:44 #236611

Dune is my favorite dudes on a map game, possibly my favorite game period. It's absolutely NOT a special event game. With the right group, I can see it being played every weekend. Sure, that's a three hour commitment, but hey, a lot of games take three hours, whether it's Terra Mystica or Descent or what. It's certainly not in the same range as Twilight Imperium.

I also find that it scales pretty well. Six players is the best, but four players (Atreides, Harkonnen, Fremen, and Emperor) is almost as good. Heck, I think it would be fine at three players (Atreides, Harkonnen, Fremen) - at the very least, games would end very quickly.

We use all the advanced faction abilities, but not stuff like double spice blow or the Duel expansion. We do enforce the scaling alliance victory conditions (+1 stronghold needed per ally), and we limit Truthtrance to the current turn only. One uncommon house rule that we have is to allow multiple players to contest a single territory in one turn; battles are simply resolved one at a time in turn order, with the active player chooses who to fight first. It lets the game move by very quickly, so correspondingly we use an 8 turn limit instead. It doesn't affect games so much because I find that most games end by turn 5 or 6, and I've seen solo Harkonnen blitzes as early as turn 3.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 06:31 #236613

How much time/effort does it realistically take to:

create a PnP version thats nice (Ilya or other)

create a PnP version thats playable at least to try out?

I suppose ebay copies are around 100 bucks?
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 09:09 #236617

Bojack wrote:
I suppose ebay copies are around 100 bucks?

For a used copy, yes. Still new, considerably higher.

spielboy.com/GeekPrices.php?gameID=121
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 09:30 #236620

Completely independent from this thread, I wrote a cool 1700 words about Dune yesterday on my blog. It was written with unfamiliar players in mind, but you can read it here if you want to.

I touch on Rex briefly in there, but every time that game comes up I feel like I need to relate my own experience with that game. I played Rex before I ever played Dune, and for about 4-5 games I enjoyed it quite well. But after some experience it became harder and harder for me to say I was having fun. Once I finally got a copy of Dune and played that I understood the problem: everything in Rex is sped up, and for me it was distorting the experience.

Rex makes a ton of design choices to make the game "faster." If memory serves...
- You can revive leaders faster.
- The board is smaller.
- More troops can be revived at once.
- Cheaper to ship (I think, it's been a while.)

All of those changes mean that troops get on the board faster, that they are in each other's face quicker, and that combat happens more frequently. That favors the Guild player (lion people?) to a huge extent. In six games on my end, the Guild player was involved in every single one. More combat also means it's more likely for the game to end with no one winning, since you can much more easily get to someone's location to stop them and delay the game again. Combat is also complicated just a little in Rex, which has the effect of making the game bog down when combat happens, and since it happens more often, it makes everything go slower. I never had a game of Rex that was shorter than a game of Dune, even games of Dune that went ten rounds or more.

So the game is quicker, but its at the expense of the dynamism of the original. I understand that they couldn't use the original license, but the real failure of Rex was in the other design decisions. The changes they made created an environment where degenerate strategies were much easier to find and harder to counter. Not only that, but there seemed to be different moments where they saw the problem and tried to introduce something to counter it. They obviously saw that the Lion People could win too easily, so they allowed the BG/Turtle People to predict the autovictories. (I forget if you could do this in Dune, but even if you could the longer game makes it a much more difficult thing to achieve.) That meant that the BG always had to predict the Guild auto-win, or rather that's how it broke down in our group. Combine that with the removal of all of the ambiguous information and communication options, and Rex feels far thinner than Dune ever did.

Now I should say this is how it ended up for me. I know a lot of people who have enjoyed Rex a lot and got it to work for them, but I just don't see how there's any comparison. Even at its best Rex feels like a step backwards in terms of design and development.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 16:15 #236639

a great post, and your points are hard to argue against.

Shipping in Rex is not cheaper, it is actually usually more expensive (you pay double to ship into an area with someone else's tokens, as opposed to Dune paying 2x into desert areas) - some people have compared Rex's shipment rules to playing Dune with spice support rule (I haven't played with spice support so I don't have an opinion).

But yes, definitely Rex is faster than Dune and in my experience there's more fighting. And Guild feels overpowered, unless you house rule no Guild default win (which is actually quite popular with Dune players, too).
The same goes for "thinness" of communications. In the same way that Dune has been vastly house ruled by players, the same goes for Rex. I started playing Rex with a relatively unsophisticated group of new players (with no serious experience in boardgaming), as we all learnt and improved, more house rules were introduced.

Going back to what you said, the pacing is different. I didn't ponder on this enough. Good thing I didn't write that article Rex is better than Dune. I probably shouldn't do it at all before playing some Dune (so, maybe in 15-20 years).
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 16:25 #236640

Bojack wrote:
How much time/effort does it realistically take to:

create a PnP version thats nice (Ilya or other)

create a PnP version thats playable at least to try out?

I suppose ebay copies are around 100 bucks?

I got the Ilya PNP copy (for Dune-Rex) for about 120 all in (but it's really nice), I don't think Dune will be more expensive. Mine is from Andrew Tullsen (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), except the cards which I did with artscow (very high quality, but shipping is kind of expensive).

IMHO, it doesn't make sense to buy old Dune on e-bay, the quality of components, design and very small board are unacceptable by modern standards.

At the risk of being thrown into flames... my advice: if you want to try the mechanics and see if you like them, just get a copy of Rex. If you hate it, Dune is probably not for you. If you find it interesting, but a little too shallow/fast, go for Dune.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 21 Oct 2016 20:11 #236655

Erik Twice wrote:
By the way, I'm curious. What rules do you use while playing the game? Do you use double spice blow? Do you consider this harms the Fremen? Do you allow Truthtrace to be exploited to hell and back by making it binding?

We use basically the same rules as found on the starbase jeff site. Here.

I pretty much agree with the analysis of the link above, and do think the pay for spice to support troops as you mention hurts the already weakest faction. We do allow Fremen to use Karama to ride worms WHENEVER which means they can ride into one of the capitals and claim ornithopters for the turn. We also play that when you exchange spice you put it in front of your screen to make it a binding agreement and don't get to collect it until the end of the turn (unless you are allied with Emp). Generally truthtrance is binding, but we would smack around people specifically trying to make loopholes or overly complex situations with it.

Bojack I have a breakdown of from when I made mine on the site, Here. Recently I helped some buddies build two sets. I wouldn't use printerstudio anymore as their prices have skyrocketed since that build, we used drive thru cards and they came out really nice.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 22 Oct 2016 06:27 #236676

I'll probably just shell out for an Ilya copy from printandplay to be honest. I'm sure it can be easily sold on if needed, I'm not so interested in testing Rex just for the mechanics, because for me, Dune is something special, one of my if not my favourite books (and I love all of the books, for different reasons even the later more abstract ones, heck I even enjoyed the crappy non Frank sequels just for the whole cheap stories using the universe). If I am going to try to find 5 other people to sit down and enjoy Dune, it's going to be Dune. Not space lions, or any GW or FFG crappy universe (sorry, flame away, I'm a big fan of the GW/Fighting Fantasy era, and Blanches art but I think the whole WH40K and follow up GW "lore" utterly uninteresting*, at least its not as shite as the FFG Terrinoth nonsense). Dune is Dune. The End.

* has always bugged me that GW got so anal about IP with "SPace Marines" when all of its own IP is blatantly derivative of god knows how many books and film tropes that existed way before GW existed. Also, genestealers sound stupid and look stupid, and even more stupid in purple. Aliens, black. see: Xenomorphs. For the WIn. I also think all that space marine brother bollocks nonsense is lame and boring. The Space Hulk minis actively put me off the game. It looks a lot better with the AT-43 marines (Red Blok spetsnatz especially) and Heroclix aliens.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 22 Oct 2016 08:40 #236679

MattFantastic wrote:
Delobius wrote:
the prospect of spending upwards of $150 on a (admittedly quite sexy) game is daunting

Sell/trade away 3 or 4 other games you already own and get Dune. You're welcome in advance.

This is some of the best advice I'd ever seen on this site and it still applies Bojack.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 22 Oct 2016 13:19 #236689

great advice apart from that I used to own around 700 games and 400 or so expansions to go with it just a couple of years ago and now I own exactly 7. Agricola unfortunately has got the wifes "sell this and die motherfucka" label on it, so that leaves me with Tigris & Euphrates, Medici, Twilight Struggle, Combat Commander, Acquire and El Grande. I will literally sell every other non vital posession I own before selling any of those, and only over my dead body will they ever be parlayed into other games, Dune or otherwise (OK, if I could bypass the wifes death mark I could probably let you have my 3M Acquire and Agricola but I dont think that gets me Dune). Money is not an issue. Getting 5 other people to commit the time and energy into making sure its nothing but a fancy shelf toad is. And unfortunately at this point in my life situation thats looking like a pretty firm lockdown, at least in the near term. So please keep posting your session reports DaBid, I'll live vicariously while I must.

hang on though, I do have a shit load of Heroscape that I keep thinking about offloading (and just keeping what any normal person would call "enough"), but I sold a couple of thousand of dollars worth before and its a ballache. I've got some of the stupid priced units like Aquillas Alliance but to be honest, I'd rather keep them for my kids to abuse than shunt them around between the basement dwelling "collectors and speculators" that drive those prices anyway. I've seen Zelrig on its own go for 80 bucks. Insane.

I guess if I solve the "group of 6" person problem then I can just flip flop some Heroscape out since I'm really not wanting to spend much/any more money on games. I dont see myself ever getting bored or outplaying what I have. literally ever. Dune might be the only special case exception outside of getting a decent pool table.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 22 Oct 2016 13:40 #236691

Hi Bojack,
If you are not sure to get 6 players and are concerned about playing time AND you are not accustomed to Dune rule-set already AND you are planning to play with wives, at least consider PnPing Rex with Dune theme.
I can promise you that Rex/Dune will get played. Dune has a high chance of becoming a monumental shelf-toad.
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 23 Oct 2016 07:20 #236719

boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/216056/fear-m...r-dune-2016-san-dieg

(If I have 3 other players at the table, we are playing Tigris & Euphrates)
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 24 Oct 2016 01:56 #236738

Sweet Ba'al, Bojack are you attending BottosCon?
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Let's Talk: Dune (or Rex) 24 Oct 2016 09:23 #236750

sorry dude, thats a long, long way away from me, sounds fun though!
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