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In the game Escape from Colditz, once a POW player has acquired an item, it seems like the guards can pretty much round all of that player's team up from the inner courtyard and dump them in Solitary.

From there, they only get released one at a time, and they still have the items, so relatively few guards can repeatedly keep them locked down.

I can see how you might manage this in a multiplayer game, with one player holding the items, and the others getting them back when they escape. But in a 2 player game, it just seems like you can keep restraining the POWs forever.

Do people have a house rule to cope with this? Or am I misreading the rules?

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That is a known problem for which players usually agree to home rules. I would suggest two such home rules:

  1. Prisoners in confinement are automatically released after a few turns (this copes with the rolling doubles problem). Just put each prisoner piece on one side of the cell and move it each turn to the other side, when it should go through the wall release it.
  2. When releasing prisoners in this way from Solitary, place them directly in the roll call spaces, where they cannot be taken again.

This way the Security Officer cannot mount a "capturing machine" that effectively blocks the prisoners actions. Also remember that the guards cannot block rooms and alleys entrances.

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I just read In the published rules #39 that once a prisoner is released from solitary confinement that a guard can not arrest the POW as long as the released POW heads directly to the Prisoners Courtyard.

Whilst returning to the prisoners courtyard he is not liable to arrest. He may, however, at any time make an escape attempt, and is liable to arrest once it is apparent that he is not moving directly back to the prisoners courtyard.

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    The problem is that you just station someone in the prisoners' courtyard and pick them up as they enter. – deworde Apr 20 at 5:22

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