Cédric LGT
France
PARIS (92)
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Hi. My name is Saw Boss of the Monster Minds and i have not conquered the universes since... er, never actually. cry

Joke apart. I played Arborecs over 5 games now and the best i've ever been able to do with them this far is "being close to win next turn". The more i play them, the less i see how they can make up for their really slow start. Despite all my efforts, it appears that i don't start going for victory before turn 3, at which point many opponents already scored some VPs - and it's particularly true with those preliminary objectives. In the end, i always happen to be at least "one turn late" with the VP leaders, which is not the case when playing other races - our games tend to end turn 6 lately.

I do plan on not using the preliminary anymore - since we found out that they slightly unbalance the game with some races and/or unlucky race/objective pairing. But i'm not sure at all that it would be enough.

What do YOU think of Arborec? Did you ever see them as a threat to the winner, or even as the winner themselves? How do you "slow down" your opponents? Do you have some secret tip, appart from getting that vital racial tech of theirs?

Help me Obiwan Kenobi BGG, you're my only hope for a greener world!!
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Adrian Pop
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I would remove preliminary objectives. They hurt strategy overall. Alternatively, you can keep them independent of the Secret Objectives, and start a game with one of each.
 
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Tiago Nunes
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Tretiak wrote:
I would remove preliminary objectives. They hurt strategy overall. Alternatively, you can keep them independent of the Secret Objectives, and start a game with one of each.

Last time I played I was actually thinking of getting both a preliminary objective and a secret objective, but only being eligible to claim the secret objective after the preliminary. This should make the secret objective easier to plan (instead of getting it mid-game) and still make you claim your preliminary objective first.
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JohnnyC Waytobe
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One of the last FTF games I played the Arborec won, BUT it's worth mentioning that they randomly received the Rise of the Messiah AC on their 3rd turn, which helped a LOT.

I would focus on getting their racial tech as soon as possible, and take Production as often as you can - then SWARM people like no one else can. Forgo most other tech except for Cybernetics and just send massive fighter swarms at the front-runners. This should slow them down enough for you to catch up and overtake them.
 
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Matt Epp
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Winnipeg
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They are a cool race, but they take quite a while to get going.

I think if they started with one of their racial techs they could be a contender.

We tried a game where everyone could pick a racial tech to start with, it was a lot of fun.

That being said, no one has drawn the Arborec for play, yet.
 
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Brian Petersen
United States
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The second game we played was Arborec, Naalu (me), and L1z1x (Derp). I picked Assembly to become Speaker on the second SC go round, since I knew I'd never see Tech without it. As Naalu with Assembly, I obviously executed it immediately, and Derp claimed to have a great PC. SCs used were second set, plus choice of Warfare I or II.

It was the one that gives 1 free GF per neutral planet captured, or we can only invade Mecatol Rex. Since I didn't want to waste my entire first round (my other SC was Warfare I), I let it pass. The Arborec ran out of plastic GFs in the first round and bought their epic racial tech between their Trade III income and Tech II primary.

Since the Arborec were expanding using Stasis Capsules alone, they couldn't take their newly spawned GFs with them. They were also CC starved because their surrounding planets contained very little influence, and as Naalu, I love spamming Leadership so I can afford to retreat from ALL the battles. For some reason, he spent all his resources on the Flagship in the mid-game instead of using good Production Capacity to create amazing Production Capacity to create Fighter Swarms.

From what I observed that game, the Arborec made the mistake of having lots of small Production capacities, instead of one big one that then spreads it's ships to the others. Derp also made the mistake of activating lots of his systems to give him lots of choices on which system to untap using Warfare I when I had successfully invaded his HS as my first action, with a relatively weak fleet. I had only brought the bare minimum to take the system without thinking of protecting it, though I managed to pull out ahead through ACs and lucky die rolls. I wouldn't have had a chance if he sent out /everything/ though.

The Preliminaries are really tough. The 3 yellow techs is an automatic for Hacan and Jol-Nar, but that takes at least until Round 4 for races that start out with none and tend to give other techs preference. All 5 DNs costs from 16 resources for L1z1x, and to 25 for races that start without one (a lot). Typically, only 1 DN could be purchased per round to still be contending for other VPs, so you don't find out about your SO until Stage II's are coming out.

I think the score was Arborec and L1z1x at 5, and me winning at 8 with a Precursor Station. It was late enough in the game that after Ancient Artifact, I had Graviton Negator through the green side and Advanced Fighters and Cybernetics.

So far, I'm enjoying the Age of Empires crossed with Preliminary Objectives and Bureaucracy variant my PBF is using.
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JJ Belyeu
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Everett
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I've only seen Arborec played in maybe 2 games. Some keys I think that help speed them up;

GET YOUR RACIAL TECH! This has been pointed out by quite a few other posts and it really is a necessity.

Another comment raised was about their flagship. I personally LOVE IT. Use it's carrying capacity to hold loads of GF, then move it around the board as a mobile Space Dock, just like the Saar.

Otherwise, watch out for Domain Counters that can really wreck you early game if you lose lots of GF.

Lastly, I don't really see the Arborec as a top-tier race (very upper middle of the pack). Don't expect an easy win against races like the Yssaril, Naalu, Hacan, etc.
 
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Zack S.
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I've only played them once and won with them when I did, but don't take this as a long well developed strategy, only observations of things that worked well.

I spent a lot of effort gaining CCs to do a ton of building so that many planets had good infestations of Arborec and the appropriate planetary facilities. Militarily I mostly abandoned active defense in favor of the ground forces and quick strike forces. Most objectives don't require large fleets, just small strikes, so fleets of doom are kind of wasted, and ground forces are often a stronger deterrent to aggression than orbiting fleets. Just invade where people are weak and then fortify with troops. If you lose your escort ships that's fine, because your new planet will pay for new ones. If you can grab Mecatol early you'll probably hold it pretty much forever, depending on whether it's worth it to you.

I don't particularly think they're all that good at swarm building, at least no better than most other races. By the time you've got a super planet that can build 18 units a turn you could have just slowly filled your carriers. The breakthrough technologies for me were their racial tech and stasis capsules. Beyond that you can be reactive, which is probably a good general suggestion. The biggest worry is probably War Suns, because their bombardment can make your planets vulnerable and strike fleets don't do well against them.
 
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John Clark
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Arborec won the game I played on Saturday, and posted a report here:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/788071/arborec-wins-5-pl...

They got their racial tech very early - it helped a lot.

Arborec seem pretty good - not top tier but far from the bottom.

Don't use domain counters - they just add randomness.
 
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Cédric LGT
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PARIS (92)
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My group does not want to play without the domain counters actually. I tried to remove them but i had to confess it removed some flavor as well...

Thanks for all your comments. Actually, i did play them last saturday before posting and i got everything that i could hope for : Racial Tech 1st turn thanks to unexpected Trade goods as well as an expansion on Hope's End, Rise of a Messiah turn 4, and so on...

Still many other race were faster to score, and game ended on turn 6 with a Jol-Nar win (8 pts, Imperium Rex) when i would have finally score my secret obj at the end of the turn (i was only at 4 by the time Jol-Nar wins)... Second closer race was the Saar (7 points) who had a rocket start, being able to get 5 planets, a second space dock and racial tech on turn 1...
 
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Ken Watson
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JohnnyCwtb wrote:
I would focus on getting their racial tech as soon as possible, and take Production as often as you can - then SWARM people like no one else can.


Curious as to this statement. Yes, definitely get the Spore Acceleration racial tech as soon as possible (expensive but worth it), but Production only allows you to build from Space Docks, so I'm not sure how Production is any better for the Arborec than it is for anyone else. Unless I'm missing something, the only way for Arborec to build GFs is with other GFs (and technically their Flagship).

It hasn't been noted, but just in case: I think it's worth mentioning that Arborec were truly intended to be played with the Mechanized Units optional rule (although they're easy and awesome; why wouldn't you play with them?). Because of the Arborec build limitation on GFs, MUs are the only way to rapidly mobilize a command invasion force from a Space Dock (i.e., via Production to allow them to move). They saved my bacon in the one game I played as Arborec (and won).

I don't play Distant Suns, but given what I know about that option, I can't see them being good for Arborec based on Arborec's GF build limitation.
 
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Brian Petersen
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Production allows you to produce units in a system containing a SD, not necessarily from an SD. Thus, you have a super high Production Capacity regardless of the planet, as long as it contains an SD.

As far as MUs go, they help against bad DS tokens, take less Production capacity, but cost more. Since all SDs have at least 2 GFs to avoid Local Unrest, once the racial tech is obtained, it's not a big deal to produce GFs. Even at that, 2 resources for 2 GFs may still be better for them than 1 MU at the same cost, especially given Stasis Capsules and the temptation to get Green techs over XRD.
 
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Ken Watson
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TomBoombs wrote:
Production allows you to produce units in a system containing a SD, not necessarily from an SD. Thus, you have a super high Production Capacity regardless of the planet, as long as it contains an SD.

As far as MUs go, they help against bad DS tokens, take less Production capacity, but cost more. Since all SDs have at least 2 GFs to avoid Local Unrest, once the racial tech is obtained, it's not a big deal to produce GFs. Even at that, 2 resources for 2 GFs may still be better for them than 1 MU at the same cost, especially given Stasis Capsules and the temptation to get Green techs over XRD.


Interesting (did not catch that, despite it being in the FAQ, which I guess I need to read again). I don't know that it's THAT big a deal, but it does address the problem I identified as to why Arborec need MUs. And I guess it can give you some good options when you park a few GFs on a planet containing an SD. Point taken.
 
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I have played with them once and won. I do not regard them a strong race but they can strike given the right orders. You will have to try to build up in the beginning of the game with a lot of ground forces at your home world.
 
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Seren of Moon
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Highlands Ranch
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The racial tech to increase production capacity is definitely a must have. I also think there's a need to focus on leveraging their racial ability to huge advantage. A large production capacity with a single activation seems key, along with necessary resources to support it. With lots of GFs, MUs, and a means to spread quickly, I could see them being quite fearsome.

I'm so sick, I've played dozens of solitaire games (don't ask). Either using VASSAL or leaving a game set up for a week and playing it here and there, I've tried Arborec several times and they have always come up near the back of the pack.

In our game group, I think our winningest player may have one with them once. Otherwise, they have not done so well.
 
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The FAQ says that GF can build while on ships, can those same GF build if their ship has moved that turn (essentially at the end of activation?)
 
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JH
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Arborec GF cannot build on the same activation in which they move. That one's right on the race sheet.
 
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Thanks and perhaps I'm being dense here but have the GF
actually moved if they stay on thecarrier or cruiser and haventloaded or unloaded?
 
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Fedor Syagin
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Twilight Imperium (Third Edition): Shards of the Throne » Forums » Strategy
Re: Arborec : may the Monster Minds ever win?
AustrianOak wrote:
Thanks and perhaps I'm being dense here but have the GF
actually moved if they stay on thecarrier or cruiser and haventloaded or unloaded?




Ok. Let's say I play along and they didn't. It still would be bad idea because it would be too hard to keep track.
Say you had 2 gf loaded and you pick up 2 and then move one sector - now according to you 2gf can build but 2 cannot?
What if you have xrd and you move carrier with 2gf to other sector pick up 2 more and move back? Same apply?
What if you do multiple pick ups?

So keeping track would be too difficult. So let's keep it simple - ship moved - they moved. If they not in the same place (same planet or same ship in same sector - then it's moved...
 
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Roger
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seanmemphis wrote:
That's wrong. I actually found a clarification; the Arborec CAN build while on Carriers and while on the Flagship. That's kinda' the point behind the wording on the Flagship card.


You're correct, Arborec's GF can build while on Carriers and Flagships, but garfielder's point was that you can't do that if the Carrier or Flagship holding the GF has moved that turn. For example, if you activate a system that already has a Carrier fully loaded with 6 GF and fly another Carrier in with 6 GF, you can then build, but only with the 6 GF on the Carrier that remained stationary during the activation. The next turn, you can build with all 12 if you don't move them.
 
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Jone Oma
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Our gaming group is pretty new to this game, so forgive me if i am missing something obvious.

But we play with distant suns and the empty system equivilent. So i was thinking that the bioplasmosis could be good together with the diplomacy card. This will net me 2 planets without activation at the beginning ot turn two, which helps to get out of the slow start they are known to have. Turn two is for getting the second race tech, and that was my plan.

Why is this such a bad idea? I don't see why this would not be good as getting untapped planets aid your echonomy greatly, and not dealing with distant suns is awesome (if it is a bad card) since arbirec arguably suffer more from bad distant suns than other races.
 
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