Thursday, April 7, 2011

Hive mind....

So the partner and I played tons of Hive last week on vacation.  It's portable and can be set up anywhere so it was perfect for the beach, the cafe, the bar, whatever.  But near the end of the week, Vince decided to ruin the game for me.  He observed that whoever places their queen bee first always seems to win as they can move their pieces first.  Sigh.  A few more rounds and we had confirmed that he was pretty much right.  At least for two fairly evenly balanced players (us) it was true.

After scouring the Geek, I found one variant suggested which balances out the players a little better.  The suggestion, which has been approved by the designer John Yianni, is to not allow either player to place the queen bee on their first move.  We'll have to try this as I'd hate to see this lovely game become a relic...


  1. So far, we only have a couple of games under our belts, but I haven't seen that to be true. In almost every game I have placed my queen in the second or third turns, while my wife usually waits for turn 4. However, she has beaten me every time, which is odd since I usually do better at this type of game. If your theory is correct, I guess that means we are not evenly balanced.

  2. This is the same experience I've had while playing this. The other hiccup I've ran into is that keeping an ant availablebto move around the outside ends the game very quickly. One the ant is on the queen in an "island" situation, the queen is stuck and it begins a slow death. I haven't read of other complaints about this, but it seems to happen with high frequency among my game group. It's kept me from buying it for my collection.

  3. I personally don't like the game.. but do you have the mosquito and lady bug tiles? I've heard that without them there are a lot of stalemates if you will.

  4. Yep, playing with the expansion pieces. That definitely helped with the stalemate issue.

    Now, we're starting to see that if you play an ant early and can move it first, you almost guarantee a win. Still, gonna try and work around it ajnd see if I'm wrong.