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There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

[Update] There[Update] There are other things to consider aside from ethics, and one of the most important in games is fun. Right now you don't seem to have much fun with this game, so let's focus on this problem instead and analize some solutions. The problem as it stands: there is runaway leader and all other player's chances to win are miniscule.

First point I want to add: If all players have about the same skill level the issue disappears without any need for prompting. Changing a group is an option, but rarely a good one. Then again, if you continue playing with same group, less skilled player should pick up strategies and get better, so eventually you'll have equally skill leveled group. Probably won't happen soon though.

Next, the problem is runaway leader. The means to mitigate it is not prompting itself, but "gang up on leader" strategy. Prompting is used to try to convince other players it's time to apply this strategy. This is the point I would try to explain to the group: playing with no chance to win isn't fun for everyone, so keeping leader in check makes game better. It's not about prompting, it's about general strategy. If this point get's accepted, there might be no need for prompting, since players would try to apply this strategy on their own. Then again, this shouldn't be all-time applied practice, because constantly ganging up on any leading player will just prolong the game and equalize scores. It should be applied cautiously to leave possibility for victory for other players when one of them is getting too far away. Although this is self-regulating behaviour, because ganging up on leader is not directly beneficial and unless there are no other viable options, players would chose more directly profitable moves.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

[Update] There are other things to consider aside from ethics, and one of the most important in games is fun. Right now you don't seem to have much fun with this game, so let's focus on this problem instead and analize some solutions. The problem as it stands: there is runaway leader and all other player's chances to win are miniscule.

First point I want to add: If all players have about the same skill level the issue disappears without any need for prompting. Changing a group is an option, but rarely a good one. Then again, if you continue playing with same group, less skilled player should pick up strategies and get better, so eventually you'll have equally skill leveled group. Probably won't happen soon though.

Next, the problem is runaway leader. The means to mitigate it is not prompting itself, but "gang up on leader" strategy. Prompting is used to try to convince other players it's time to apply this strategy. This is the point I would try to explain to the group: playing with no chance to win isn't fun for everyone, so keeping leader in check makes game better. It's not about prompting, it's about general strategy. If this point get's accepted, there might be no need for prompting, since players would try to apply this strategy on their own.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

[Update] There are other things to consider aside from ethics, and one of the most important in games is fun. Right now you don't seem to have much fun with this game, so let's focus on this problem instead and analize some solutions. The problem as it stands: there is runaway leader and all other player's chances to win are miniscule.

First point I want to add: If all players have about the same skill level the issue disappears without any need for prompting. Changing a group is an option, but rarely a good one. Then again, if you continue playing with same group, less skilled player should pick up strategies and get better, so eventually you'll have equally skill leveled group. Probably won't happen soon though.

Next, the problem is runaway leader. The means to mitigate it is not prompting itself, but "gang up on leader" strategy. Prompting is used to try to convince other players it's time to apply this strategy. This is the point I would try to explain to the group: playing with no chance to win isn't fun for everyone, so keeping leader in check makes game better. It's not about prompting, it's about general strategy. If this point get's accepted, there might be no need for prompting, since players would try to apply this strategy on their own. Then again, this shouldn't be all-time applied practice, because constantly ganging up on any leading player will just prolong the game and equalize scores. It should be applied cautiously to leave possibility for victory for other players when one of them is getting too far away. Although this is self-regulating behaviour, because ganging up on leader is not directly beneficial and unless there are no other viable options, players would chose more directly profitable moves.

3 added 1288 characters in body
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There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

[Update] There are other things to consider aside from ethics, and one of the most important in games is fun. Right now you don't seem to have much fun with this game, so let's focus on this problem instead and analize some solutions. The problem as it stands: there is runaway leader and all other player's chances to win are miniscule.

First point I want to add: If all players have about the same skill level the issue disappears without any need for prompting. Changing a group is an option, but rarely a good one. Then again, if you continue playing with same group, less skilled player should pick up strategies and get better, so eventually you'll have equally skill leveled group. Probably won't happen soon though.

Next, the problem is runaway leader. The means to mitigate it is not prompting itself, but "gang up on leader" strategy. Prompting is used to try to convince other players it's time to apply this strategy. This is the point I would try to explain to the group: playing with no chance to win isn't fun for everyone, so keeping leader in check makes game better. It's not about prompting, it's about general strategy. If this point get's accepted, there might be no need for prompting, since players would try to apply this strategy on their own.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

[Update] There are other things to consider aside from ethics, and one of the most important in games is fun. Right now you don't seem to have much fun with this game, so let's focus on this problem instead and analize some solutions. The problem as it stands: there is runaway leader and all other player's chances to win are miniscule.

First point I want to add: If all players have about the same skill level the issue disappears without any need for prompting. Changing a group is an option, but rarely a good one. Then again, if you continue playing with same group, less skilled player should pick up strategies and get better, so eventually you'll have equally skill leveled group. Probably won't happen soon though.

Next, the problem is runaway leader. The means to mitigate it is not prompting itself, but "gang up on leader" strategy. Prompting is used to try to convince other players it's time to apply this strategy. This is the point I would try to explain to the group: playing with no chance to win isn't fun for everyone, so keeping leader in check makes game better. It's not about prompting, it's about general strategy. If this point get's accepted, there might be no need for prompting, since players would try to apply this strategy on their own.

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There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested gamemove directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen to you too eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for to Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader" play, there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested game directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen to you too eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for to Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader" play, there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

There can't be definitive answer to this question, as ethics generally doesn't provide hard guidelines. But I can suggest several points to consider:

  • Think about Player 3 first in isolation from "you vs Player 2" shenanigans. Was suggested move directly helpful to them? Haven't you tried to play the game for them? It's about whole group, not just you and Player 2. Try to evaluate "Player 3 is missing a move" situation, and act same way. Say, they forgot they have a port and traded some resource with highter rate. Would you tell them? Would they be grateful or annoyed if you tell them?
  • Would you be okay on Player 2's place? If you are in the lead and other players gang up on you, how would you feel? Because if this practice will be accepted by your group, this will happen eventually.
  • Where is your group on competitive/casual scale? I would forbid such "prompting" in tournament play, but I wouldn't have any problems with it in casual beer-and-pretzels play. Looks like at least you and Player 2 have competitive mentality.
  • Catan is a game of negotiation, so I would expect highter allowance for such meta-gaming than in other games. Also, the decision is for Player 3 to make, if they're not ok with this play, they can just don't do it.

Ultimately, meta-gaming can fix the game as well as ruin it. And it doesn't end with "gang up on leader", there are a lot more possibilities like "I don't care about my own score as long as I don't let Bob win" or "Me and Sam will ally and help each other so one of us has better chance of winning than everyone else", etc. In other words, I don't recommend to open this Pandora's box unless you are sure.

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