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We played our first Shogun game last Saturday. We have a problem regarding how to count the troops that fall from the tower in every battle. We don't understand how the tower really works (even after reading the rule book in English and in Spanish).

From what we understood, there is no way a player could get more troops that he throw in the tower. Also, from what we understood, green defends if there is no revolt mark. (The revolt mark is another topic!). But what happen if red has 4, yellow has 2 and, after throwing, fall 6 reds and 3 yellows? All are count and red receive 3? What about greens (somewhere said that green die first?) or the max used is the max throwed inside the tower?

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2 Answers 2

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After looking over the rulebook again, I see a potential confusion arising from the use of the words "participating armies", but I think it's resolvable. In "General Rules for the Battle Tower":

All battles are fought with the aid of the battle tower. A player takes all participating armies (colored cubes of the attacker and defender) and throws them into the tower together with all cubes lying in the tower tray at the start of the battle. In the process, some of these cubes will remain in the tower, and some that were already inside the tower will fall out into the tray, thus producing a chance result.

And a little further on in "Battle Results and Consequences":

To determine the outcome of the battle, players count up the number of attacking and defending armies that come out into the tower tray. The side with the most armies in the tray wins. Armies not participating in the battle are disregarded and remain lying in the tray.

I think it's clear from these paragraphs, taken in combination, that other appropriately coloured cubes, apart from the ones thrown in, can become part of the "participating armies" and contribute to the outcome of the battle; a "chance result" is the intended outcome. "Armies not participating in the battle" doesn't mean "cubes that weren't thrown into the tower just now", it just means "cubes of the wrong colours".

As for the green cubes, the rules say:

If there are no revolt markers in the defender's province, all farmer armies in the tower tray count for the defender. (After a battle that includes farmers, all green cubes in the tray are returned to the farmer supply. If farmers are not involved in the battle, the green cubes remain in the tray.)

So if 6 reds and 3 yellows fall out then red is probably going to win the battle, unless a lot of defending green cubes fell out too! All the yellow and green cubes are returned to their respective supplies, and the same number of red armies also go to their supply. Any remaining (victorious!) red cubes will be placed in the contested province.

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+1 great answer. The rulebook could contain further clarification about how this work, since it's a common thing that after a few rounds you get more troops that you use for the battle. –  gbianchi Apr 17 '12 at 13:04
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After diggin a lot on the BBG forums I found out something that looks like the answers. According to the game manual, there is no clarification about this. So the only thing to come up with this, is that the number of troops that fell of the tower, are the number of troops you return to your province (taking into account loses and things like that).

So yes, you can gain more troops that the one you thrown into the tower.

In my example, you receive 3 troops. or In the thread example, you use 1 troop, and receive 4 from the tower. So all troops are taking into account, no matter how much did you put on the tower.

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I didn't think it was controversial that you could get more troops out of the tower than you put in; but I'll check the rulebook to see! I agree with your answer anyway. –  thesunneversets Apr 17 '12 at 10:41
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