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Lords of the Renaissance
Variant for the game by Sierra Madre Games in the form of an email conversation on the topics of Phocaea and Timbuktu

From Tue Feb 27 06:36:12 1996
Subject: Re: LotR suggestion

>Rick Heli wrote:  
>"I control Phocaea duchy which has an Alum Resource.  Even
>though it's printed on the board instead of in the form of a
>card, if I supply it with slaves, I should be able to receive 3
>Au/year.  In fact, draw in the blank pink card as a reminder."

Historically, the Sultan owned the alum farm at Phocoea, and a mere
player who advises the sultan (holding one or both Ottoman cards)
would not be entitled to any profits from these mines.  This is
what I had in mind with this enterprise.

This is not the whole story:  you have a good idea.  Historically,
the sultan contracted out the farm to the Greek Zorzi family.  They
managed it, in other words.  The sultan was impressed with the
Greek's business saavy, and their Levantine and Florentine connections.

Therefore, it seems reasonable to make a green card representing
the Phoceoa alum mines.  It would be available to players from the
start of the game, the first Duke successfully bidding upon it
would get the mines.  A special rule would say that this mine is
already built; it does not have to be matured.
Otherwise, the player allied with the Ottomans would refuse to
pay for its maturation, and it would give him an unfair advantage
when historically the sultan was willing to go to anyoone, Christian,
Jew, or Turk, who could manage the site profitably.

If you want to exercise this option:  Using one of the blank green
cards, mark it R19, Bartolomeo and Piero Zorzi, "matured", Phocoea
Asian Alum, Sarukhan, Ottoman Empire 3 Au if linked with slaves.

Another option is the end of game roll.  A faster end of game method
would be to roll one die at the end of each year, (after winter
depletions) adding the number of P cards in the discard pile, and
a modified roll of 7 or better would halt the game.

Since there are 12 P cards in a 197 card deck, every 16 quarters
(or four years) would produce an average of one P card.  So after
four years, (average), would start rolling for end of game, and 6
years after that (average) the game would halt.  Since most of our
games end after 8 years, this is not unreasonable.

Let me know if this works.


From Wed Feb 28 06:02:26 1996
Subject: Re: Timbuktu

Timbuktu is a funny situation.  The Gold Coast was the stuff of

One account said that the transaction was conducted a a certain
clearing, where a shelf of rock had holes drilled in it.  And great
pottery vessels.  But no people.

The western traders left their offerings in the vessels, ussually

Then they retired.  If they spotted smoke, they knew that at least
some of their trade was accepted.  They returned, and recovered
gold dust left in return for the salt.

I do not know why the African traders were so shy, or through what
intermediary this trade was established.

I don't think a card should be made up for Timbuktu.  It is right
on a slave source anyway, so not much of a route could be established
for it.

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Last updated: Wed Apr 7 11:56:21 PDT 1999