Scythe with 7 players

Premium User

After much manipulation and text messaging and Facebook messaging and set up and building of a cheese board and purchasing of beer...I was able to get 7 players to the table last night for #Scythe.

For those unfamiliar with Scythe, in brief, Scythe is an action selection, area control, style game set in alternative 1920s cold war...with Mechs.

1.  I wanted to use the board expansion but due to 7 players and the tablespace (4x6) feeling limited with the larger board, I choose to go ahead and use the original side of the board and hope for not too much crowding on the board.  This worked out over the course of the game and it never felt too crowded (though more space would not have hurt).

2.  I think 5 players might be the most ideal as just about every hex was used over the course of the game and it certainly came to a point where one had to decide to attack or lose popularity if they moved or sit still and focus on personal board options.  

3.  Going after the Factory was dangerous and challenging if you didn't have the right board to work with.  I was using Polandia and my board didn't get me mechs as fast as I wanted so I went for other options and completely ignored the factory. 

4.  Safety, everyone wore a mask, and while it was cold and we were in my garage I set up my fire pit with a fan in front of it with just enough distance to blow heat and not smoke.  In front of the fan I put my propane heater so the heat would be further blown into the garage.  I sat the furthest away from the heat source and never felt cold on a 40-degree evening.  Food was off to the side and everyone did a good job keeping their mask on except for taking a bite or drinking.  Thus far folks have been very good at declining to come if they were exposed.

5.  I decided not to play with #Scythe: The Wind Gambit as there was one player who had not played before and I didn't want to overwhelm them.  Everyone else was familiar.  We used the topshelfgamer encounter tokens and those were much easier to see on the gameboard especially with the higher player count.

6.  We now have a vast majority of local players who have played, own, or have a solid base of game knowledge that we might start playing with the #Scythe: The Rise of Fenris the next time we play.  I am considering setting up a schedule for the year to play through the entire campaign.  Not sure yet, but hopefully this will work.

7.  Scythe is such a well-designed game.  Like #Gloomhaven, this is not a game that falls into the type of game I'd normally play.  I ignored Scythe for a while when it first came out thinking it looked too much like #Risk or other war-type games or area control games.  Scythe is not really the type of game it looks like in my opinion.  I imagine the game can be played fairly aggressively but I've never played with a group that did that and it seems to have a great balance of positive interactions that far outweigh the combat scenarios.  

8.  I did miss playing with the Wind Gambit as it adds a fun layer to the game and if we end up playing the Rise of Fenris campaign I will probably incorporate the Gambit into the gameplay.  That being said I found this to be one of my favorite Scythe experiences and while 5 players might make for a better overall game I think the 7th player made the social aspect quite fun.


What has been your favorite Scythe experience if you have played this game before?

What games have you thought would not be good for you and after playing, found them to be fantastic?

If 'roses are red' and 'violets are blue', why is the moon made of cheese?



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Supporter5 months ago

I've played with 7 once and I loved it.  Minimal space means maximum combat.

I've only played once in recent memory but I remember it being a great the last time I played (about 3 months ago).  It was a partial teaching game but the new player came out strong.  We also had a lot of objetives filled and a lot of cold war, almost fight moments with some tenuous alliances.  But... we did a good job of doing what we said, which was short term agreements.  So short that the Saxony still pulled off placing more than two stars for winning combat.  In the end I won by a small margin.

Premium User5 months ago

I've also played with 7 once before and 6 a couple of times.  If you are playing with people that know the game it moves along quite fast!!

I'm with you on the wind gambit.  For a large game with some new players I would probably leave it out.  I find that while it might add some fun in there it's not worth the extra rules complexity for new players. Some games they get used, other games I've seen maybe one ship move once.  

The end game condition changes are sometimes used too.  It actually won me the 7 player game.  We had the one where the game ending player had to be the winning player or another round happened.  I was behind by maybe 10 points but was setup for a huge turn.  One player got their 6th star but didn't have the most points and I basically ran away with the game.  That one turn was all I needed!

I also have the expansion encounters.  They are fun if you have people who have all played a lot because they can be quite swingy.

The most recent game I can remember being iffy on but really liking was #Watergate.

Premium User5 months ago

I love the encounters! Those are my favorite add to the game.

Premium User5 months ago

They are neat but they can change the game up a lot which might make it a bit confusing for newer players.

During the 7 player game I got one that gave me 8 wheat!  So enlist was done for the rest of the game.  I knew how to optimize for it but if it was my first game it would have given me a wrong impression of how it usually goes. 

Premium User5 months ago

Good point. I haven't run into with me players. Last new player burnt down the factory with his encounter card. No one else got a card!  

Premium User5 months ago

Burned down the factory?  Cool!  :) I purposefully haven’t read through them all. 

Partner5 months ago

I know some people dogpile on 7 player Scythe, but honestly, I played 7p once and everyone knew how to play. It took us around two hours, was super crowded, and an absolute blast to play. Every decision seemed like a push or pull with two other factions staring right at ya. Loved it. 

Supporter5 months ago

I agree, I played 7P with players who all knew the game already.  I think we even clocked in at about 90 minutes.

Partner5 months ago

exactly! with experienced players, Scythe is quick. We've played a number of 4p games in under 50 minutes

Premium User5 months ago

That is good to hear! I was beginning to wonder if I just had a weird

Supporter5 months ago

I think 4 or 5 is my favorite player count for Scythe. I am amazed at how you seem to enjoy stretching the boundries of games like this. Keep it up.

Supporter5 months ago

Have not played scythe enough to have a favorite expirience. I've wanted it for a very long time but some how I always postpone it (don't even know why, I love the theme especially). That being said, at 7 sounds amazing. I never have a group big enough to play at high player counts like that. 

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