Posts Tagged ‘Opportunity Cost’

Is Getting Robbed a Good Thing?

25/10/2010 4 comments

Well no. It’s not. First, I should clarify my distinction between getting stolen from and robbed.
Getting Robbed is when a 7 is rolled and you have more than 7 cards, forcing you to discard half of them.
Getting Stolen From is when the Robber is put on your hex and the opponent gets to steal a card from you. This isn’t what I’m talking about.

So again: is getting robbed a good thing? No. It means you lose cards. In the strictest sense of the definition, getting robbed is simply spending cards and getting nothing tangible in return. It’s spending resources on nothing. More precisely, it’s spending resources for the convenience of holding those resources. So, in that sense of it, if at any time you find yourself holding more than 7 cards in your hand, you are essentially gambling half of them. We’re gambling against the roll distribution.

Here’s a little math lesson for you. Anyone who has taken some basic probability classes will be able to teach this lesson, so bear with me if this sounds like a class you took freshman year of college. Basically, there’s a set probability of rolling each number, shown by the graph below: Read more…


Utility of Development Cards

22/10/2010 14 comments

This is a much debated topic in Settlers. There is obviously some value in them, but how much?
Overestimating that value is sure to end up in wasting resources buying more than you need.
Underestimating that value is sure to end up in wasting resources buying things you need less.

This is called opportunity cost. Again, this should remind you of any “Introduction to Macroeconomics” class. So, how do we decide how valuable Development Cards are?

Let’s start off with figuring out what Development Cards we’re dealing with before we judge value. In the original Settlers game, there are 25 development cards:

  • 14 Soldiers/Knights (I’ll call them Knights from now on)
  • 5 Victory Points
  • 2 Road Building Cards
  • 2 Monopoly Cards
  • 2 Year of Plenty Cards Read more…
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