Tuesday, November 08, 2005

#47: Titan

It's a very long game (it can last up to 10 hours)... and one of those dreaded "elimination" games... and one of the few "chit-pushing" games to make The One Hundred... still, this "Fantasy Monster Slugathon" has a small horde of devotees who swear by it. Welcome Titan, #47 on The One Hundred.

Joshua Miller: "Absolutely brilliant, multi-faceted design with a variability and depth of strategy that rewards repeated play. The tactics of the battle board are fairly easy to learn, but it's the strategy of the master board that separates the expert from the novice."

Richard Vickery: "Magnificent design rewarding the calculating gambler."

Aaron Fuegi: "I no longer play FTF every week as I did for years but still love it. It is a game where I think one should either play a lot or not at all. There is just too much depth for dabbling to be much fun I think."

picture from Board Game Geek

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5 Comments:

Anonymous josh miller said...

If your Titan games are lasting up to 10 hours, something has gone horribly wrong. I think this is the "dabbling" issue that Aaron Fuegi mentions. A group of novice players may not know what to make of Titan, and the game can drag as everyone sets their sights on recruiting the coolest creatures rather than simply winning the game. New players tend not to see the value of aggression in Titan and so the game drags. This is especially likely if they're playing with a full table of six. My suggestion is to play with four or fewer, be aggressive, and remember that the goal of the game is to eliminate your opponents' Titans. You may find that Titan becomes an entirely different game.

Once you gain a little familiarity with the game, I'd say games should range from 2 to 5 hours, and 5 is very rare. Two-player games often finish in far less time.

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd generally agree with your commen here and agree that it is a very rare game that takes anything like 10 hours although it is possible. Two of the four semifinal games (all 4 player games) at this years World Boardgaming Convention Titan tournament went over 8 hours and one had to be adjudicated (only the second time this has happened I believe).

OTOH, I strongly disagree with your comment on the main page about battleboard skill. There is a ton more to it than you are suggesting and there are very real differences in battleboard skill at even the very highest level of players (all of whom have played at least 100 games).

-Aaron Fuegi

1:10 PM  
Anonymous josh miller said...

I'm not sure I'd want to use WBC games as my guideline for how long I expect a game to take.

3:36 PM  
Anonymous josh miller said...

Regarding my comment about the battle board:

My point was that it seems to take players longer to reach a reasonable level of competence on the master board than it does on the battle boards. Sure, there are subtleties to the battles, but I think the basics can be learned (relatively) quickly by a sharp player. I've played a lot of games against intermediate-level players who are decent on the battle board, but make some big mistakes on the master board that cause them to lose.

I probably overstated my case about the battleboard tactics, but that was meant simply to underscore my main point, which is the second part of the sentence. The master board is where an expert player typically beats a less experienced player. Certainly, I don't want to imply that there's not a lot of skill to the battles. There is! Especially in being able to execute a plan that is more sophisticated than just "I must win this battle." Your goal on the battle board is typically much more complicated than that.

Keep in mind that my original statement was just a two-sentence blurb about why I love Titan. Such a short message is probably going to be more rhetorical than analytical.

8:02 AM  
Blogger Aaron D. Fuegi said...

Got to completely agree about the rhetorical nature of these blurbs and I'm not too happy about a number of mine, either.

12:33 PM  

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