I am looking for a variant to balance out mandatory quests when playing 2 player. I understand that normally they are powerful, and exist as a catch up mechanic, allowing all players to target the leader.
This does not work in a two-player game. In a three-player game when a mandatory quest is played, the biggest winner is the player not involved in the play. In a two-player game the biggest winner is the player playing the card.
What I find bad is not that mandatory quests are powerful, but how weak all the other Intrigue cards are. Instead of getting a boost, they are mostly weakened. Cards that get you agents and points get you less. Cards that give things to opponents, make you give things to "all" opponents.
This seems to make the game much more luck-based, as drawing mandatory quests is just so much better than any other Intrigue card. This is the aspect that I really dislike.
One solution might be to create a dummy player. This player would always do what the person playing the Intrigue card wants, giving agents or VP for instance. I would like to know if there are any other ways that would balance the cards out better.