Sending the game to Seth has been very useful. He has now played the game 3 times expermenting with a few ideas. Here are some of his blog post:
Noblemen First playtest
Noblemen 2nd and 3rd playtest
From all of this and several conversations about the game has me thinking about the game allot again.
The latest set of talks have spawned ideas about how to end a round. These ideas are largely Seths:
Each round would now be called a decade and the game would end after 3 decades. The last 3 decades of Queen Elizabeths reign starting about 1570.
Churches would no longer end a round. There would be no more scoring beads and no more scoreing round actions / tokens. Instead there would be a new track on the board with a marker that counts off the years. The track would look like something like this:
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / BALL / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10 / BALL + SCORE ROUND
At the start of the game one player would recieve the Queens Crown and the player to his left would go first. Place a year marker on the 1 of the decade track.
At the start of your turn; if you have the Queen's Crown you recieve one VP and the year marker moves one year on the track.
When the marker reaches the BALL the Queen throws a Giant Ball giving you a chance to upgrade your Noble titles.
When the marker reaces the BALL + SCORE ROUND players do another BALL and then do a scoreing round ending the decade. After the 3rd Decade the game would end.
Players would be able to prolong the end by keeping the crown hopping but that would come to an end eventualy. You would never be sure exatly when it was comming but most of the time it would be predictable.
I am concerned that there are too many tracks on the board now. Personaly I find tracks to be a bit boring.