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J Sinnett
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So, my first run through the game included a very bad situation for one player where their entire stock of ships was in a single fleet, which stumbled into a Crystalline Entity right at the start of one turn and got wiped out, leaving said player with four unused Commands and only two Production Nodes to try and recover with.

We ended up houseruling that the player could cash in the unused commands for 1 Production each, but it felt like a kind of one-time patch job more than a reasonable rule.

Has anyone else come up with anything better for situations like that?
 
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Daniel Grant
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Unusable? Couldn't they be used to cycle through research cards?
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J Sinnett
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Could, yes, but not a great idea when their research slots are all full and being completed on the next turn. It really was a 'no good uses' situation.
 
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Todd Warnken
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HikariStarshine wrote:
Has anyone else come up with anything better for situations like that?


Yeah, don't send your entire fleet down a unexplored space lane.
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John Godwin
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Nothing. We've had a few games, the main thing I can recommend is to not go for tones of commands early on. I had a game where I had 9 commands but nothing to do with them because I focused on getting them early on.
 
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Daniel Grant
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HikariStarshine wrote:
Could, yes, but not a great idea when their research slots are all full and being completed on the next turn. It really was a 'no good uses' situation.


Ok, just checking. I don't have the game yet.

What does the CE do that can take out an entire fleet? Don't you roll for each ship with Hazards?
 
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Todd Warnken
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Jatta Pake wrote:
HikariStarshine wrote:
Could, yes, but not a great idea when their research slots are all full and being completed on the next turn. It really was a 'no good uses' situation.


Ok, just checking. I don't have the game yet.

What does the CE do that can take out an entire fleet? Don't you roll for each ship with Hazards?


It destroys all ships in the system (and the system) unless you have upgraded your weapons and shields.
 
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Marc Bennett
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Mundane wrote:
Jatta Pake wrote:
HikariStarshine wrote:
Could, yes, but not a great idea when their research slots are all full and being completed on the next turn. It really was a 'no good uses' situation.


Ok, just checking. I don't have the game yet.

What does the CE do that can take out an entire fleet? Don't you roll for each ship with Hazards?


It destroys all ships in the system (and the system) unless you have upgraded your weapons and shields.


yesh the CE will always nudge itself to the top of the deck when it sees large fleets exploring. i would never explore with more than a 3 ship fleet and usually far less especially in the early game single ships only.
 
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Grish
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HikariStarshine wrote:

We ended up houseruling that the player could cash in the unused commands for 1 Production each, but it felt like a kind of one-time patch job more than a reasonable rule.

Has anyone else come up with anything better for situations like that?


Instead of houseruling because of a bad decision, why not learn from the decision and not play that way again?

One production per command is too good. It takes the Romulan player an investment of 3-4 production (3-4 ships in a fleet), then moving that investment using commands to a specific kind of system, and then a further command to tap it, getting back 2 production only once per turn.

If the player was really upset at it and felt left out, the Trade Agreement mechanic will let him get back into the game and caught up.
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Henry Matheson
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I suggest 2 command tokens per Production in a case like this. If you don't have 2 and only have 1 oh well too bad so sad. Don't make bone head gamble-moves and have the bad luck to do that. What else can you do with 1 command? draw a technology? Either way randomness happens, deal with it, or do you not have the stones to handle it. If so, then play Federation, what is the faction for weak players who want to sing Kumbaya and all get along.
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Nick S
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The situation arose in the one game I've played so far, and as a result I came up with a few options. I liked one idea best, but have two different options for the benefit and I haven't decided which would cause fewer balance issues. I'm going to try these out when I get my copy:

Option A
Each turn, a player may spend unused command tokens to purchase any resource from the supply. Exhaust two command tokens to purchase any one resource. You may do this any number of times on your turn, but each time after the first costs three command tokens per resource. You may purchase a maximum of one culture token per turn.

Option B
Each turn, a player may spend unused command tokens to purchase any resource from the supply. Exhaust two command tokens to purchase any one resource. You may do this any number of times on your turn, but each time after the first costs three command tokens per resource. Any culture purchased this way may only be used during the next build phase. If any purchased culture remains unused at the end of the next build phase, return it to the supply. You may not use purchased culture toward an ascendancy token.
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Dave Summers
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I don't understand why this needs house ruling at all, you don't have to use all your commands do you?
 
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J Sinnett
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You don't have to, no. But if something happens (for example, you only have four ships, have them in a Science Fleet to protect them from a Neutron Star, and your first action of the turn is to drop them out of warp into a new system that has a CE) that leaves you with well over half of your commands unused, it's the kind of thing that can turn a person off of a game really fast.

Now, that said... I really, really like Nick S's option B. That's a pretty brilliant way of offsetting the inherent power of Culture tokens, particularly where the Federation is concerned.
 
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Daniel Grant
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Mundane wrote:
Jatta Pake wrote:
HikariStarshine wrote:
Could, yes, but not a great idea when their research slots are all full and being completed on the next turn. It really was a 'no good uses' situation.


Ok, just checking. I don't have the game yet.

What does the CE do that can take out an entire fleet? Don't you roll for each ship with Hazards?


It destroys all ships in the system (and the system) unless you have upgraded your weapons and shields.


Ok. Is this the card Tholians are immune to?
 
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Daniel Grant
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HikariStarshine wrote:
You don't have to, no. But if something happens (for example, you only have four ships, have them in a Science Fleet to protect them from a Neutron Star, and your first action of the turn is to drop them out of warp into a new system that has a CE) that leaves you with well over half of your commands unused, it's the kind of thing that can turn a person off of a game really fast.

Now, that said... I really, really like Nick S's option B. That's a pretty brilliant way of offsetting the inherent power of Culture tokens, particularly where the Federation is concerned.


Option C: Don't change any core rules. Just remove the CE from the deck of tiles.
 
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Marc Bennett
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Jatta Pake wrote:
HikariStarshine wrote:
You don't have to, no. But if something happens (for example, you only have four ships, have them in a Science Fleet to protect them from a Neutron Star, and your first action of the turn is to drop them out of warp into a new system that has a CE) that leaves you with well over half of your commands unused, it's the kind of thing that can turn a person off of a game really fast.

Now, that said... I really, really like Nick S's option B. That's a pretty brilliant way of offsetting the inherent power of Culture tokens, particularly where the Federation is concerned.


Option C: Don't change any core rules. Just remove the CE from the deck of tiles.


Option D, dont explore with large fleets and lose your ships.
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Igor Horvat
Croatia
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If he had any ships left he could try to "fish" space lanes of desired length with impulse command.

But yeah, dont explore unknown space with entire fleets.
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Grish
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HikariStarshine wrote:
You don't have to, no. But if something happens


It's not "something," it was a bad strategic decision by the player.

Quote:
it's the kind of thing that can turn a person off of a game really fast.


They should own their bad play, suck it up and learn. I wouldn't be playing down to their level and houseruling, he should play up to a higher standard.

OR if you felt bad about them feeling bad, why not exchange a trade agreement? Give them your 3 production card for their 1 production. Problem solved no need to house rule. If a guy you're playing with will be turned off a game because of that one play, doesn't sound like the most ideal playmate.

This game definitely has some luck to it, with system draws, card draws, bad/good dice rolls - no question about that. However, this game also has a risk vs reward understand build into it. Sending a fleet down a space lane is risky, however, it could pay off in the player's favour too.

If players take risks and aren't penalized for it, then what is the point of taking risks? If everyone will be coddled at the table no matter how bad they play, what's the point of trying your best or learning?
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Nick S
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R2EQ wrote:
If players take risks and aren't penalized for it, then what is the point of taking risks? If everyone will be coddled at the table no matter how bad they play, what's the point of trying your best or learning?


As far as I'm concerned, there's a difference between being penalized for a dumb decision, and being effectively eliminated from the game because of that dumb decision.

When the clear leader of your game declares the game is broken and he's not having any fun because 2 of the 3 players literally can't re-establish a presence on the map, something is wrong.
 
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Daniel Grant
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In defense of the original poster, I gather that the game was new to the players and they were unaware of the risk of sending a fleet out to explore without upgraded shields and weapons.

My general approach when learning new games is to give great leniency to "re-do" game actions that result in such unexpected consequences. I would have let the player take back the move and reshuffle the exploration deck if I hadnt warned the player of the risk they might be inadvertently taking.

If I had made the move and suffered the fate, I would have accepted it and
played on - chalking it up to learning. Plus I am extremely competitive and take great enjoyment from winning despite impossible odds. But that is just me and I know other players don't get that same enjoyment.

I see no issues with house ruling or modding games but I tend to avoid changing mid-game. It feels like a slippery slope where rules are mutable and shifting.

Since the original poster asked for better ideas, I would have done a do-over instead of altering core rules mid game. But that is just my opinion. I prefer to mod and improve games only after fully grokking the original design. One play feels far too early.
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Chris Schenck
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Don't put all of your eggs in one basket.

But if you do ... don't fling that basket into the unknown void.

But if you do ... don't complain when you end up with a bunch of smashed eggs.
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Chris Schenck
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Jatta Pake wrote:
In defense of the original poster, I gather that the game was new to the players and they were unaware of the risk of sending a fleet out to explore without upgraded shields and weapons.

My general approach when learning new games is to give great leniency to "re-do" game actions that result in such unexpected consequences. I would have let the player take back the move and reshuffle the exploration deck if I hadnt warned the player of the risk they might be inadvertently taking.


This is a fair point. Yeah, I warn new players not to explore with fleets. I also usually will be lenient when a new player shoots themselves in the foot because of a bad decision, especially at the beginning of a long game where they'll be paying the price for a long time.
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Grish
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Jatta Pake wrote:
In defense of the original poster, I gather that the game was new to the players and they were unaware of the risk of sending a fleet out to explore without upgraded shields and weapons.

My general approach when learning new games is to give great leniency to "re-do" game actions that result in such unexpected consequences. I would have let the player take back the move and reshuffle the exploration deck if I hadnt warned the player of the risk they might be inadvertently taking.

If I had made the move and suffered the fate, I would have accepted it and
played on - chalking it up to learning. Plus I am extremely competitive and take great enjoyment from winning despite impossible odds. But that is just me and I know other players don't get that same enjoyment.

I see no issues with house ruling or modding games but I tend to avoid changing mid-game. It feels like a slippery slope where rules are mutable and shifting.

Since the original poster asked for better ideas, I would have done a do-over instead of altering core rules mid game. But that is just my opinion. I prefer to mod and improve games only after fully grokking the original design. One play feels far too early.


I agree with everything you said. Great points raised, especially the "re-do."

I've done that as well when playing games with newer players, like X-Wing for example, when they don't fully grasp what is happening. Usually the fear of a bad move let's the lesson sink in, and then the re-do let's the game get back on track.
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Aaron Bevan
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HikariStarshine wrote:
So, my first run through the game included a very bad situation for one player where their entire stock of ships was in a single fleet, which stumbled into a Crystalline Entity right at the star
That happened to the the Romulan player the very first time we played as well.

The Klingon and Feds pretty much ignored him and were at each others throats, both were about to cap 5 ascendancy with tie going to most systems so the Romulans essentially became the king maker. The Romulan player was able to recover enough to participate in the game but was to far behind in culture to achieve victory except through controlling 2 rival home worlds which he almost did.

The CE is an unfortunate event that a new player could not have predicted but a Hazard could do the same. I don't feel a house rule needs to be implemented for unspent Command tokens as it was not the unspent command that was the problem but the loss of so many early resources with no gain.
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Maldus Alver

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