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player1304997
Junior Member

Posts: 3
Registered:
April 2013
  Small World Hybrid - An Alternate Way to Play SW Tue, 21 May 2013 22:53
So my friends and I have been playtesting an alternative way to play SW we refer to as "Hybrid". The idea is that everyone plays two races at the same time as a single race. This effectively gives every race four powers (two race; two special). These games are some of the most bizarre, ridiculous, savage, and fun games of SW I've encountered.

How to set up a Hybrid game:

1. Use a board for about 2x the number of players. Hybrid races need more room than standard races. In my opinion, 2x can feel a little roomy at times, so I prefer 2x-1 (ie three people on a five board).

2. When laying out the available races, put race combos out in pairs. Essentially you'll have two side-by-side stacks of six Hybrid races. You should options like Diplomat-Mystic Priestess-Ogres or Seafaring-Imperial Barbarian-Drow.

3. When picking a Hybrid race, treat all four components as a single race. You'll receive all the race tokens denoted by the badges. When playing, treat each token as if it possesses all four powers. When entering the board using a Tunnels setup; if both races are SWU start underground, if both are SW start above, and if there's one of each take your pick.

4. The rest of the game functions just like a normal Small World game, only with more tokens and powers in play. In over a year of playtesting the only difficulty has been running out of victory coins in the late game. (These games are high scoring. Most players approach 180 at least, and the record just broke 300.)

One last note: Obviously we haven't seen nearly all the possible Hybrid combos, but one or two have surfaced that simply don't work. A race of Kobold-Pixies simply cannot exist as the race powers are flatly contradictory. There is also the case of the Immortal-Marauding Gypsy-Flames that broke one game. They could not die, laid waste to all other races, and raked in incomes around 40 coins per turn. Aside from these two combos, however, everything else has proven to be quite balanced.

I hope people try a few Hybrid games and let me know what they think. Also, I'd love to hear about any bizarre/powerful/or broken combos that surface.

[Updated on: Mon, 08 July 2013 15:48]

      
ChosenSpeaker
Junior Member

Posts: 18
Registered:
March 2012
Re:Small World Hybrid Fri, 24 May 2013 03:18
I recently tried a three-player hybrid game and boy was it action packed!!
When my opponents managed to open with Royal-Wise Cultist-Ogres and Quarreling-Thieving Mummy-Ratmen, I thought I was dead! I probably would have been if I hadn't grabbed the Adventurous-Immortal Will-O-Wisp-Trolls. Kept me alive long enough to get a good in-decline stronghold.
The second slew of races was even more spectacular. I was sure the player who grabbed the Dragon Master-Merchant Kraken-Shrooms would win. Turns out that sort of money-making power couldn't stand up to a combined assault by Commando-Historian Mudmen-Skeletons and my Mounted-Martyr Pixie-Orcs!!! In the end I barely pulled off the win with a score of 223, just five coins more than second place!!
This is a great variant of Small World! Thanks for the post. We'll be sure to play it again!
      
ChosenSpeaker
Junior Member

Posts: 18
Registered:
March 2012
Re:Small World Hybrid Sat, 06 July 2013 13:08
I have a question about a hybrid combo that might be overpowered.
The other day in a hybrid game, I pulled Royal-Tomb Priestess-Shadow Mimes. My initial thought was that it just looked nice. Then I realized that on my second turn with them I could create an invincible tower of over twenty tokens. That would net me a guaranteed income of twenty coins from a single space that my opponents could do nothing about.
This was the first time we'd seen Tomb-Priestesses, so there was a debate about how they worked. After finding that answer on the forums it was clear we were playing the race by the rules. Nevertheless, my friends thought the combo was game-breaking. Since you guys created this version, what do you all think?
      
player1304997
Junior Member

Posts: 3
Registered:
April 2013
Re:Small World Hybrid Sat, 06 July 2013 15:35
Well, ChosenSpeaker...
This combo generated a lot of debate. There seem to be two distinct camps regarding Royal-Tomb ???-Priestesses (the second race is not part of the issue, so I'll label it ???).
About half the Hybrid Council wants to simply ban this combo on the grounds that it guarantees victory.
The other half of us (myself included) believe that this should be a legal hybrid combo. My argument is that Seafaring-Priestesses have thrown just as many traditional games by building an invincible tower in the lake or a sea. Other hybrids that would create very similar circumstances would be Tomb-??? White Lady-Priestesses or Seafaring-Tomb ???-Priestesses. The key is to have the Tomb-Priestesses pick up another power that leaves them impregnable.
In my opinion, this is hardly game-breaking. Sure there's a very big Priestess tower that you can't do anything about, but it's more annoying than threatening. Remember, all other sources of income are increased as well, so the extras from the Tower shouldn't throw the scoring that much. More importantly, the Tower can't actually do anything to you, so just pound that player's new active race until he has no choice but to go into decline, removing the Tower.
There's no doubt that this is a powerful combo, but it can be dealt with. A broken combo is one that annihilates all the other races every turn while scoring obscenely well and there's nothing anyone can do about it.
Well, the Hybrid Council can't come to a consensus. It looks like this particular combo is going to be left up to house rules.
Hope this helps.
      
ChosenSpeaker
Junior Member

Posts: 18
Registered:
March 2012
Re:Small World Hybrid - An Alternate Way to Play SW Wed, 10 July 2013 08:54
Thanks for the info. I completely understand both points of view. I'll probably leave the issue up to players if the race ever shows up again.

By the way, "Hybrid Council"? Made me laugh so hard! Thanks for answering in character.
      
    
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