Is Hansa Teutonica "broken" at 3 players?

On telling a friend that I’d picked up Hansa Teutonica second hand, he informed me that it is broken at 3 players, and that he always wins. I think he means that there’s a strategy that is very powerful if nobody else blocks you, but I’m not sure. Anyone else know anything about that?

I feel like I saw a thread on BGG with this title.

I did have a look on BGG, but I haven’t found anything useful yet - still searching!

Oops, got lost in the server migration.

The thread I was thinking of is a bit different:

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(Only 5 plays so hey) but son number 1 dominated the two cities connected to the action icon on the base board and no-one blocked (we are still feeling our way) - so he was both generating points when he and others wanted to maximise the number of actions. It quickly snowballed to him having 20 points (gamm ends) and only a limited area of the board being occupied. Games after that one have been much more grief-y …

Also - 3 maps in the new edition means plenty of different strategies I think …

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We’re still feeling our way after 5 plays as well. Getting 3 actions quickly seems important but every other game has been very different.

@Whistle_Pig is your friend the 3rd person in your gaming group?

My initial feeling is that it’s more tactical than strategic so playing the board and your opponents will probably stop 1 strategy dominating?

Yep. He also has a very similar opinion on Kemet and Cyclades

Ah. Don’t play it with him then.

Also, watched a teach for Cyclades. Looking forward to it a lot.

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(restoring my replies lost in the migration)

Personally I’m not aware of such an issue with Hansa Teutonica.

In general, my philosophy on these kinds of “solved game” issues is:

  1. Don’t research it – nothing good can come of doing that. Even if such a strategy exists, you are likely to have many, many enjoyable games before anyone figures it out – which may never happen at all… unless you go and read all about it! Whatever the game, it obviously got through all its play-testing without people realising the problem, so the chances are pretty fair that you’re not going to notice.

  2. If you do learn such a strategy, just don’t use it. A guaranteed win is no fun for anyone. Unless someone can’t (for whatever reason) refrain from exploiting such a loophole, it doesn’t need to spoil the game.

In the case of H.T. there is such a large range of moves you can make, that fixating on one single approach every time would seem terribly sad to me.


Another option: ask them to devise house-rules/starting positions which will negate their unbeatable strategy. The sort of person who feels compelled to play optimally to the detriment of the whole experience may be the sort of person who would find enjoyment in fixing the problems they see.

If they aren’t interested in fixing it, but they also won’t refrain from exploiting it, then (a) yikes, and (b) good luck.

Or maybe they only think it’s an unbeatable strategy because people haven’t countered it before, but I couldn’t say either way.