“Oh it’s my turn already? Okay let me think….ah no, that wouldn’t work, perhaps if I…..no that wouldn’t work either….hmmm….”
I am not a man of patience and easily get agitated by players that act as if their turn came as a complete surprise to them, every time. It is okay once or twice, but each round – Come on! You all known these slow players – there are always at least one in every crew. Our crew is no exception. Since CoN is a game with quite a lot of downtime compared to other games I feared this would ruin the experience for me. After our first session, which lasted 4 rounds and 3 hours, people was pretty disappointed about spending most of the time waiting for their turn. However, after having played CoN for several months now, the downtime seems to play a minor role. This is why:
- Obviously people play faster once they’ve learned the rules and have played the game a couple of times (even though I at one point suggested that we should use an egg-timer to speed things up. This was, to my disappointment, rejected)
- All experienced gamers know that strategic planning should take place while waiting for one’s turn. Of course the other players can mess things up, but then you should have thought of a plan B (the really experienced gamer would also have a plan C or even a plan D). After getting a hang of the rules it becomes much easier focusing on the strategy.
- Even though you may not be able to anticipate your opponents move on your right hand, you can always start planning your battles against your left hand enemy as soon as he has deployed new troops. Then you only have to focus on your actions against one enemy when it’s your turn.
- In a 4p game you team up with an ally and therefore your victory will depend on his success as well. Naturally you would be interested in participating in his moves and battles and give him the best advice you can. When playing CoN the first couple of times you are pretty much consumed by your own actions. When you get more experienced it becomes easier to take part in your ally’s actions as well.
There are also a lot of cool game mechanics that make up for the downtime and I can’t see how it could be avoided in a wargame like this. Therefore my advice would be to give this game a chance despite the initial downtime since this will be minimized with time.