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Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

With my current 18xx's nearing their end, I was casting around to start a new one. I picked 1862 (soon to be reprinted by GMT) because it seems wild. I'm looking for, say 2 to 4 other players. It plays up to 8 but that seems a pain. Anyone interested I'll need a board18 username
Players will be railways baronets in the south-east of England, which is small, crowded, flat, and rich. The game gather's every little contradictory deviation between past games and lashes them all together, while adding its own twists to the formula. It's got both full and incremental capitalisation. It's got three different types of train, one of which is a hex train! Multiple trains can run on the same track in an OR! The president's share is worth 3 shares!! And can be sold to the market!! I'll make a longer post about all the main features of the game, there are quite a lot.

Rulebook
Sheet
Board

Mr. Squishy fucked around with this message at Jan 19, 2019 around 01:19

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Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

Companies can either be chartered or not. Chartered companies have their shares safely locked up in an IPO, and are fully capitalised when floated. Non-chartered are incrementally capitalised as and when shares are sold from the company at the current market price, while still needing to sell 5 shares to float. Chartering a company also lets you lock down a good company, but you have to bribe an MP and if you don't manage to float it in the next OR, you are utterly hosed.
Of the 20 companies, only 16 will be in play, and only 8 of those will be available in the first SR, with future trains being unlocked as A and B trains are bought. Each company has a permit that allows them to profit from a type of train, but can diversify by merging with other companies.
The most obvious gimmick is the map. It's tiny, and every single hex has either a town or a city on it. It is also completely devoid of difficult terrains and has only 3 impassable boarders. The difficulty is in optimising the track laid for the type of train you are planning to run.

I'll go into detail about the OR weirdness, starting with routes! It's no longer enough for a route to have one of your stations on it. Your first route must include your home station, and any subsequent routes must share a city with a prior route. So you're daisy-chaining routes together, making station placing trickier and getting cut out more ruinous.
Another odd thing is that you can re-use the same track all you want, but stops only generate revenue once per turn, regardless of how many trains you run through them.
Let's take a look at an example. E&H is trying to find four routes for its three trains.

Its home station is Ely (C8) and so the first run of the day must include that city. The chosen route starts in The West red off-board location, runs through Cambridge, Ely, and Bury St. Edmonds where it is blocked by the I&B station. The second route then runs from London, through Great Dunnow to Sudbury, satisfying both the need for a station and a shared-city with a previous route. Finally, the third train retraces much of the first route, but deviates to hit March and the Midlands. Please note that the token in London is not a station, it's just track to London that is tied to one company, and so uses a station token.

Trains! The bank sells a number of lettered locomotives, which when bought the purchaser locks them in as either Freight, Local or Express. Each train variety has different ways of generating revenues, and therefore a preferred way of arranging track. I'll explain them all through running 2 As and a B through this twist of track.


I'll start w/ Express as they're the most normal. The number of an Express train shows the most cities and off-board locations it can run through, and each one it runs through generates revenues (providing it's not been scored that turn). Some Express Trains are instead X/Y, whereas Y is the maximum length of its route, and X is the number of cities which generate revenue, which is really good for a second train who is bound to share one city with a prior train that has probably already scored that city. They completely ignore towns, both for revenue and for route length.


The 2E trains (aka A trains) are in orange, the 2/3E train (B) is in green. As it happens they all run through the home station so order doesn't matter, so let's go from the top. The first 2E runs from Colchester (green N), generating 60 revenue, to Ipswich (yellow N) for a further 40. The 2/3E train starts at Colchester, but opts not to score it, then runs through Harwich and Harwich Port for a total of 130. Finally, the second 2E runs at Colchester (which has already generated revenue and so provides nothing) bypasses the town of Tiptree to hit London for 150. That's a total revenue of 380

Local trains work similarly to Expresses, where they can visit as many cities as the number of the train. They cannot visit off-board locations, but earn revenue from towns they pass through. They also earn a small subsidy per hex they visit, which is paid straight into the comapny treasury.


Let's start with the lower 2/3L train. As it cannot visit London, and legal routes have to begin and end at cities, it's unable to service Tiptree. However, it can take the long way to Ipswhich from Colchester scoring three lots of 20 for the three towns it passes. It's worth noting that it only visits the town on the green hex once, as the town is only on the S-NE track, completely separate from the SE-NW track. The 2L trains hit Harwhich and Felixstowe, and here I can drive the point home that the Ipswhich-Felixstowe route is only legal after the 2/3L route linked the home station to Ipswhich. The company earn a total of 240 revenue, but before dividends are paid or withheld, the local authorities pay the company 10 per unique hex visited by an L train. That's 80 straight to the treasury. You might think this leads to rich companies and poor investors, but don't worry, there's a way around that.

Finally, Freight, the hex train. Freight only cares about distance because they collect a packet of goods at the beginning of their run, and don't stop til they get to the end, earning a bonus for how far they took it. This means they only earn the revenue of the beginning and end of their route, ignoring any cities or towns in between.
As this packet is very important, apparently, you have to dedicate all your Freight trains to hauling it, meaning multiple F trains are essentially cumulative. Each individual train needs a legal route but for the purposes of generating revenue our 2 1H's and 1 2H are efectively a 4H train


This was my first thought for a route. We start in London for 150, and our 2H takes us to Colchester. Then our first 1H moves us further to Ipswhich which adds 40. A second move would be harmful for total revenue as we would be swapping Ipswich's 40 for Felixstowe's 20. Then we see how many hexes away we've gone as the crow flies, adding 20 per hex for a total of 230. In retrospect, the 1H we did use is redundant as the added hex bonus exactly makes up for the loss of moving out of Colchester. It would be nice if we could start a second Freight route but the delivery must go through.


This is my second go. Because the hex bonus increases if your run includes a port, I tried eschewing London for the Sea. The first run is a 1H to Ipswhich. Then the 2H takes us to the port of Felixstowe. Again, using the third train would be very detrimental as the only valid route for a 1H from Colchester takes us to Harwhich, which is both poorer and nearer. And having calculated all of the income, it nets 10 less than the London route.

More train weirdness: you are not forced to discard Trains if the limit is brought down around you, so you can never buy trains from the open market, and trains have a fixed price! Even between companies, trains are sold at 100% face price for an up-to-date locomotive, and at 50% for an out-of-date one.

And finally, saving my favourite rule for last, if your dividends don't live up and your share price is stagnant, you can supplement the payout with as few lots of 10 from the treasury as it takes to match or exceed the share price. It's called the George Hudson Manoeuvre, after parliamentarian, railway baron, fraudster, and bankrupt George Hudson.

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

I'm in. I've got this preordered so might as well try a game.

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


I am keen as well.

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


I'd like to join if you're okay with this being my first 18xx experience. I have plenty of Indonesia games played if that helps at all.

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

That's fine. I think 18xx's reputation for unfriendliness is overstated. They're not crazily rules-complex, just quite long with limited catch-up. The former doesn't matter so so much remotely, and this is just a friendly game among non-experts (at least, I know I'm no good at these) so neither does the latter.
I wrote my posts for people w/ some knowledge of the genre, so either use the book (which has a daunting layout but is much more complete) or just ask in the 18xx channel in the discord.
I'll start this later today, but as a final pitch, I'll say this game is extremely focused on the board. A lot of changes hamper stock-market foolery. You cannot have companies dumped on you (because you can sell the president's certificate) or stolen from you, you cannot be forced to buy a train for your company, and company's stock price can earn protection from their shares being sold. So if you want a game where you just focus on making good routes, this is it.

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

OK, I'm starting. Order is:
Cthulhu Dreams
Known Lecher
FACKER
Mr. Squishy

Facker, you need to register an account on Board18 and post your username, and I'll add you to the board which has the map, tiles, and stock market. If everyone would request edit access of the sheet, which tracks shares, money, and company charters.

Before we start, the companies and their starting permits are randomized. Of the 20 companies, 8 can be started immediately. When the first B-train is bought, a further 4 may be started, then the last 4 on purchase of a C-train. The remaining 4 charters go back in the box. Permits restrict what types of train companies can profit from (not what they may own. You can buy a train you can't run) and are assigned at random. The only way to gain different permits is by merging with another company.
On the sheet, full-coloured companies are startable, the light grey ones get unlocked next, darker grey after that, and near-black are out. Here's a visual guide showing order and starting permit transposed on the map, it goes Orange, Green, Red.


As there are no privates companies there is no special Initial Stock Round, just a regular Parliamentary round. Here we bribe the government for a charter for our railways; in gameplay terms, we auction off the right to buy a president's certificates. Minimum bid is 0, maximum bid is all your money minus the amount for the certificate, which is 3 times the IPO price which you set after you win the auction! It would be a bad idea to bid so high because you really want the company to float before the next Operating Round.
Chartered companies are fully capitalized, so when they float (by buying a fifth share of them) they get ten times their par price. Which is good because money on hand lets you buy and run trains to make your money back! Downsides are they're limited on the number of stations they can have, and they pay more them, and of course you have probably paid some money to the bank for the benefit of a charter.
Please note that you don't have to start a company this way, as you can start a non-chartered company in the forthcoming stock round, but if you're not CD and you think one of the companies is much better than the others, it's probably worth putting to the auction.
Here's the stock market. It's long

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


My Board18 account name is wtfeathers. Same name for discord as well.
A lot of jargon in that post that went way over my head. I've got a lot of learning to do...

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


I..bid 20 pounds on ENR FDR ENR

Known Lecher is up next

Cthulhu Dreams fucked around with this message at Dec 13, 2018 around 00:58

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

One thing to keep in mind for Facker, since it's their first 18XX, is that (as shown on the stock chart) 54 is the absolute lowest share price that you can start a company at, meaning you need at least 54x5 = 270 (plus anything you might have bid) in order to be able to buy 5 shares and float a company. Since only companies that are floated can operate and earn money, that's pretty important. Other players could theoretically buy shares in your company and help float it but that's generally Real Bad to count on unless you have an explicit agreement with them.

Pass

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Known Lecher posted:

One thing to keep in mind for Facker, since it's their first 18XX, is that (as shown on the stock chart) 54 is the absolute lowest share price that you can start a company at, meaning you need at least 54x5 = 270 (plus anything you might have bid) in order to be able to buy 5 shares and float a company. Since only companies that are floated can operate and earn money, that's pretty important. Other players could theoretically buy shares in your company and help float it but that's generally Real Bad to count on unless you have an explicit agreement with them.

Pass

Also basically never buy into someone's company to help them float it unless you have a really, really good reason why you might want to do that.

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


Yeah that all makes sense, thanks. I'll pass as well.

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

I'll go £25

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Can I start another auction here?

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

Your last one's not finished yet! If you mean in the round, then yes, but first Lecher gets the chance to either start another one or pass.

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

Did Cthulhu pass?

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Nah, will bid 30 here.

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

40

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Yeah you can have it

P.S. gently caress you

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

OK, I pay 40 to the bank in bribes, set the par price at 62 and buy the presidents certificate for 186. I opt to then buy a further two certs for a total expense of 350. This floats the company which then immediately receives 620 to the treasury and is ready for the operating round. Lecher to start.
e: also, sheets tips: don't write in the orange spaces as they're calculated and doing so wrecks the formula, and it's best to let the sheet calculate anything even remotely complicated. This both leaves to the arithmetic to the computers and allows you to easily check the working. So in my stock actions cell is "=-40-(62*5)".
e2: I forgot about tokens! After flotation, ENR immediately buys 3 tokens for 60 each. As a chartered company, it has no choice in this, but a non-chartered could buy between two and seven at 40 each.

Mr. Squishy fucked around with this message at Dec 14, 2018 around 11:14

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

Y&N for 20

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


30

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

Pass!

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Pass

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

Pass

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


I'll set par price to 68, buy all 5 shares (for 340) needed to float and get those 3 tokens required (for 120). Total 30+120+340 is 490.

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

You don't pay for tokens, the company does. The only thing you spend your personal money on in this game are shares and bribes (I believe).
It's also your go to start an auction. I was going to say you shouldn't as you can't currently buy 5 shares at even the lowest par price and so would probably fail your obligation. In the coming round you could sell Y&N shares to free up cash to float another company. I have no clue if that's a good move.
So! start an auction or pass?

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


I will pass.
Do I need to update the spreadsheet with my last company start at all? Or are you taking care of that?

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

I have done so but it's best if you do it. It can be impossible or a pain (if you're phone posting, for example) so when that's true just say so in the post. I also updated the board (stock market is accessible through Menu > Go To > Stock Market or just the M key).

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

Oh shoot, i also pass.

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


I calculated with the wrong station price above. I corrected to 180 in the sheet.

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.


Pass

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

WNR for 10

FACKER
Jan 1, 2005


Pass

Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

Pass

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.



15

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

20

Cthulhu Dreams
Dec 11, 2010

If I pretend to be Cthulhu no one will know I'm a baseball robot.



Pass.

I think i get to start an auction then in which case NGC for 5

Known Lecher
Jan 4, 2016



Fun Shoe

I'll pay the *cough* service fee (-20) and float WNR at 74 and buy the president's share (-222) and buy two more shares (-148) for a total of 390, which floats the company and gives it 740 in its treasury. I don't have edit access on the spreadsheet yet but I updated the stock chart.

Edit: Oh, and pass.

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Mr. Squishy
Mar 22, 2010

A country where you can always get richer.

I don't remember your email so you need to request write permissions, which is a button somewhere top left.
e: having hit "post" i decided to check my email and...

Mr. Squishy fucked around with this message at Dec 16, 2018 around 11:39

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