Which character set do people prefer? I've played the game a dozen times at least, but nobody seems to want to relearn the new characters' roles. Does anyone prefer the new ones to the old? Any advice? Is it possible to mix and match?
Expansion vs original
It's definitely possible to mix and match. We do that all the time. As long as you only pick one character for each number, you're good to go.
on 1 we rotate between witch and assassin
2 is always the thief
3 mostly the magician
4 intrigeur, cause it's boring if the king blocks his spot for the whole game
5 the new priest (don't know his english name)
7 bob, the builder (don't know his real name either (original game)
8 soldier of fortune
9 usually the queen cause she is fun but the artist is fun too
so we mostly play the old champs, but some of the new ones are fun too
at the end it's personal preference anyway
For new players we generally just play with the basic set.
When everyone has played at least a couple of games we usually randomise between individual cards in the two sets, giving a mixture of old and new. You can then vary it by showing everyone which cards are in and out, or playing the whole thing blind and not knowing from which set each card comes (we then say for assassin/thief they have to kill/rob a number not a character), until a round or two has passed anyway.
The choice between Warlord/Diplomat often comes down to how fast we want the game to be played. Players who prefer to build sturdy cities usually want the Warlord, while people who like the "Every card has its worth"-approach, like the Diplomat.
On the King/Emperor-issue we've started to use the emperor more frequently. The King usually sees play when we are introducing new players.
We change it up quite a bit, however there are a few cards that we do always keep:
All of the other cards we can switch around at will.