18xx game etiquette – game time

How often do you complain about the time of the game? How often do you read that 18xx games are terribly long? Or wondering why your games are so long?

Today I opened the instruction for the next 18xx and read it right away: In order not to lengthen the playing time unnecessarily, each player should think about what he is going to do in his turn while other players are taking theirs.

This is not an exception in the manual, some extra rule. Such a record is in every instruction to 18xx, look for it under the slogan ‘Game etiquette’.

Examples from several instructions:
1830/1856
Considerate players speed the play of the game and make the experience more fun for everyone. In a game of this length, players should plan their share purchases and company moves in advance of their turns—whenever possible.
1817
Players should attempt to speed play as much as possible. In particular, players should try to determine what share to buy or what tile to place or upgrade during another player’s turn.
1846
Plan ahead. Sometimes a player’s decisions will affect your own, but often they won’t. Planning your corporations’ next tile lays, routes, and train purchases can dramatically speed the game. Similarly, in Stock Rounds, a given player can purchase only one certificate per turn. Picking a second choice, while the player ahead of you is thinking, will often result in you being able to take your turn immediately.
1848/1880
In order not to lengthen the playing time unnecessarily, each player should think about what he is going to do in his turn while other players are taking theirs.
1889
In a game of this length, players need to plan their company moves before their turn. You should plan what tiles(s) you are going to lay or upgrade. Where possible you should plan your train runs in advance.
1822
Players should attempt to speed play as much as possible. Determining what share to buy, and which tile(s) to lay should preferably be done in other players’ turns.

And how does our game sometimes look like?
The player’s turn comes and he begins to mix with the track. He takes one track, puts it on, turns it and states that it’s not the one that he needs, so the next one, and so on … When he finally finds the right tile, he starts to count the route, and then horror! He changes his mind and builds a route elsewhere !! The worst thing is that this player has two more companies in front of him!

Meanwhile, what the etiquette says: think forward, plan ahead, anticipate and do not unnecessarily prolong the game!

There are sometimes some circumstances that cause that we do not always have the option of scheduling a route, for example – when two companies operate in the same region. But then we can think in advance about what we would like to do and not passively wait for his turn. Or when our plans are thwarted by someone: someone buys the last or the first share we wanted, build a track which was only one copy, or block your company immediately before it moves. All this is possible and such things happen. But then there is a way for our means to efficiently come up with what’s next? What now? Which way to go, what to buy or sell?

The solution is a timer!
Different groups experienced and sometimes quite young, play on time. Each company president gets a certain amount of time for his activities, from 1 to 3 minutes.
Experienced groups often play very strictly, 1 minute and not a second more. Do you want more time? Please, here it is, but pay, each additional second is $1 in minus to the final result.
I did not play such a game but I like the idea myself. I know, one minute is not enough, not much time = a lot of mistakes. The point here is to: the time that we receive, we must spend as much as possible and reduce the number of errors as much as possible. This is an intense puzzle for our brains, in the end, 18xx it is not social, pleasant afternoon game.
There may be different exceptions from the above:
– new players. Give them more time? What if there are 4 new players and one experienced?
– specific companies which have more trains than the rest and which start operating immediately with several stations, eg the state railway in 18Mex. On the other hand, the president of such a company knows what he was getting into 😉

How does it look in our group?
We had an hourglass, a very simple instrument, a small, 2-3 minute hourglass that hurried optimizers. Almost no one has any resistance to using it, but we do not have any rigid rules that we add negative points or someone loses their movement. It is simply a determinant for everyone, a kind of information that you think too long and it’s time to act. A simple and effective solution. So effective that the game that once lasted 6 hours, we played in 4 hours!
If you do not have it, then buy two or three immediately, because the hourglass cannot be reset, so if the sand falls halfway and the next person moves, then you have to wait until the sand is poured to the end and then turn it around. I know that there are similar electronic devices, stopwatches in our phones, etc … then you do not have to invest anything. But the hourglass has its own climate 🙂
I noticed in our games that at the beginning, when we started to use the hourglass, we automatically imposed a new pace, also after several rounds, we gave up the hourglass ourselves. But to a certain point, when it again had to come back to the game.

Translated by Google


18xx game etiquette – czas gry
Jak często narzekasz na czas gry? Jak często czytasz że 18xx są strasznie długie. Albo zastanawiasz się czemu wasze gry tyle trwają?

Otworzyłem dzisiaj instrukcję do kolejnej 18xx i przeczytałem, od razu na samym początku: In order not to lengthen the playing time unnecessarily, each player should think about what he is going to do in his turn while other players are taking theirs.

To nie jest jakiś wyjątek w instrukcji, jakaś extra zasada. Taki zapis jest w każdej instrukcji do 18xx, szukaj go pod hasłem ‘Etykieta gry’.

Przykłady z kilku instrukcji:

1830/1856
Considerate players speed the play of the game and make the experience more fun for everyone. In a game of this length, players should plan their share purchases and company moves in advance of their turns—whenever possible.
1817
Players should attempt to speed play as much as possible. In particular, players should try to determine what share to buy or what tile to place or upgrade during another player’s turn.
1846
Plan ahead. Sometimes a player’s decisions will affect your own, but often they won’t. Planning your corporations’ next tile lays, routes, and train purchases can dramatically speed the game. Similarly, in Stock Rounds, a given player can purchase only one certificate per turn. Picking a second choice, while the player ahead of you is thinking, will often result in you being able to take your turn immediately.
1848/1880
In order not to lengthen the playing time unnecessarily, each player should think about what he is going to do in his turn while other players are taking theirs.
1889
In a game of this length, players need to plan their company moves before their turn. You should plan what tiles(s) you are going to lay or upgrade. Where possible you should plan your train runs in advance.
1822
Players should attempt to speed play as much as possible. Determining what share to buy, and which tile(s) to lay should preferably be done in other players’ turns.

A jak wygląda czasami nasza gra?
Przychodzi kolej danego gracza i zaczyna się kombinowanie z torem. Bierze on jeden tor, przykłada, obraca i stwierdza że to nie ten, bierze kolejny, i tak dalej… Gdy w końcu znajdzie odpowiedni kafelek to zaczyna liczyć trasę, po czym o zgrozo! Zmienia zdanie i buduje trasę w innym miejscu!! Cholera by go trafiła! Najgorsze, że ten gracz ma jeszcze kolejne 2 spółki przed sobą i pewnie będzie dla nich podobnie kombinował z trasami!

Tymczasem co etykieta mówi na to: myśl do przodu, planuj wcześniej, przewiduj i nie wydłużaj niepotrzebnie gry!

Są czasami pewne okoliczności które powodują że nie zawsze mamy możliwość wcześniejszego zaplanowania np. trasy – gdy dwie spółki operują w tym samym regionie. Ale możemy wtedy pomyśleć zawczasu o tym co chcielibyśmy zrobić a nie biernie czekać na rozwój wydarzeń. Bądź gdy nasze plany ktoś nam pokrzyżuje: kupi ostatnią lub pierwszą akcję którą my chcieliśmy, wybuduje tor którego była tylko jedna kopia, zablokuje naszą firmę zaraz przed jej ruchem. Wszystko to jest możliwe i takie rzeczy się zdarzają. Ale wtedy jest pewien sposób na to aby nasze głowy, sprawnie wymyśliły co dalej? Co teraz? W którą stronę pojść, co kupić lub sprzedać?

Rozwiązaniem jest czasomierz!
Rożne grupy, doświadczone i czasami całkiem młode, grają na czas. Każdy prezes firmy dostaje określoną ilość czasu na swoje działania, od 1 do 3 minut.
Doświadczone grupy grają często bardzo rygorystycznie, 1 minuta i ani sekundy więcej. Chcesz więcej czasu? Proszę bardzo, masz, ale zapłać, każda dodatkowa sekunda to 1 dolar na minus do wyniku końcowego.
Nie grałem w taką grę ale sama idea bardzo mi się podoba. Wiem, jedna minuta to mało, mało czasu = dużo błędów. Chodzi tutaj o to aby czas który otrzymujemy wykorzystać jak najintensywniej i jak najbardziej ograniczyć ilość błędów. To intensywna łamigłówka dla naszych mózgów, w końcu 18xx to nie są towarzyskie, przyjemne popołudniowe gierki.
Od powyższego mogą być różne wyjątki:
– nowi gracze. Czy dać im więcej czasu? Wręcz nieograniczony niczym limit. A co jeśli jest 4 nowych graczy i jeden doświadczony?
– specyficzne spółki które mają więcej pociągów od reszty i które zaczynają działać od razu z kilkoma stacjami, np. państwowa kolej w 18Mex. Z drugiej strony, prezes takiej firmy wie, w co się pakował 😉

Jak to wygląda w naszej grupie?
U nas sprawdziła się klepsydra, bardzo prosty instrument, mała, 2-3 minutowa klepsydra która pośpieszała optymalizatorów. Prawie nikt nie ma oporów z jej używaniem, ale nie mamy jakiś sztywnych zasad, że doliczamy ujemne punkty albo ktos traci ruch. Po prostu dla każdego to wyznacznik, tali rodzaj informacji że myślisz już za długo i pora działać. Proste i skuteczne rozwiązanie. Na tyle skuteczne że grę która kiedyś trwała 6 godzin, zagraliśmy w 4 godziny!
Jeśli jej nie macie, to od razu kupcie dwie, albo i trzy, bo klepsydry nie da się zresetować, więc jak piasek przesypie się do połowy i nadchodzi ruch kolejnej osoby, to trzeba poczekać aż piasek przesypie się do końca i dopiero wtedy ją obrócić. Wiem że są podobne urządzenia elektroniczne, stopery w naszych telefonach, itp… wtedy nic nie trzeba inwestować. Ale klepsydra ma jednak swój klimat 🙂
Zauważyłem w naszych grach że na początku, gdy zaczęliśmy używać klepsydry to automatycznie narzuciliśmy sobie nowe tempo, także po kilku rundach, z klepsydry sami zrezygnowaliśmy. Ale do pewnego momentu, gdy znowu musiała ona wrócić do gry.

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