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Race for the Galaxy» Forums » Sessions

Subject: A series of solo sessions versus The Robot rss

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David Arlington
United States
Memphis
TN
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This will be a series of solo sessions against the Robot solitaire opponent that I am crossposting from the Solitaire Games on Your Tabletop November 2016 GeekList. I've played solo against the Keldon AI on the computer and enjoy that as well, but sometimes I just like the tactile feel of real board game components and cards and counters. Plus I find the Robot fun to play against and a different kind of challenge.

This is the first of THREE sessions with Race for the Galaxy I will be playing this month.

For the first session, I will be using just the Base Game plus the Race for the Galaxy:The Gathering Storm expansion, the expansion that introduced the solitaire game for RFTG and its Robot opponent. The second session will add in the second expansion, Race for the Galaxy: Rebel vs. Imperium and the final session will, of course, add the third expansion, Race for the Galaxy: Brink of War. For all games, I will be playing on Easy Mode (Robot gets 1 6VP Development chip).

For my first session with just the first expansion (and it's start worlds), I drew New Sparta while the Robot got Ancient Race. Here's how it ended up with me getting a narrow 6 point win, 56-50:



Here's how I got there:

Turn ONE:
ME:
Settle, Settle; Alien Robot Sentry, Outlaw World; VP: 4
ROBOT: Settle, Produce; Prosperous World; VP: 3

Turn TWO:
ME:
Consume: Trade, Produce; no cards; VP: 4
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: X2; Mining Conglomerate; VP: 7

Turn THREE:
ME:
Settle, Consume: Trade; Deserted Alien World; VP: 10
ROBOT:
Settle, Consume: Trade; Refugee World; VP: 10

Turn FOUR:
ME:
Develop, Settle; Expedition Force, Pirate World; VP: 14
ROBOT:
Explore, Consume: Trade; 6 Point Development Chip; VP: 18

Turn FIVE:
ME:
Develop, Produce; Alien Tech Institue; VP: 20
ROBOT:
Explore, Produce; Galactic Renaissance; VP: 24
(Note: Big card for me in the end, offset this turn by lucky robot flipping a six point development!)

Turn SIX:
ME:
Settle, Consume: Trade; Reptilian Uplift Race; VP: 23
ROBOT:
Develop, Produce; Consumer Markets, Secluded World; VP: 31
(Note: I started to get worried here...)

Turn SEVEN:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Develop; Terraforming Guild; VP:33
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: Trade; Expedition Force; VP: 35
(Note: Terraforming Guild was my other key card and synergized well with my tableau and Alien Tech Institute.)

Turn EIGHT:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Settle; Deserted Alien Outpost; VP: 40
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce; New Vinland; VP: 36
(Note: I finally get ahead of the ROBOT...)

Turn NINE:
ME:
Settle, Consume: Trade; Alien Toy Shop; VP: 48
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce; Pilgrimage World; VP: 42

Turn TEN:
ME:
Settle, Consume: X2; Deserted Alien World; VP: 56
ROBOT:
Explore, Consume: Trade; Deserted Alien Colony; VP: 50

FINAL VP: ME: 56, ROBOT: 50


In the end, Alien Tech Institute was worth 12 points for me and Terraforming Guild ended being worth 14 points. That was key to outpacing the robot. That and getting the Alien and windfall worlds.
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David Arlington
United States
Memphis
TN
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This is my second of THREE plays of RFTG this month. In the first session (I won over the robot 56-50), I used the Base game plus only the Race for the Galaxy:The Gathering Storm expansion. This game includes the Base Game, the Gather Storm expansion AND the Race for the Galaxy: Rebel vs. Imperium expansion. All games will be on Easy Mode with one six-point development chip available.

No picture of my tableau for this game, sorry. Put it all away before I remembered I had forgotten to take it.

This expansion introduced the new way to select Start Worlds. Splitting them into Military and Non-Military, mixing them up and selecting one of two. I assumed that held true for the Solo game as well, though for the Robot, I just mixed all the remainder together and dealt it one at random.

I forgot also to write down my Military World choice, but whatever it was, I decided to go with Galactic Developers instead. The Robot went with Doomed World. I lost this second game by a narrow margin, 55-53, despite falling very far behind early. Now I'm 1-1 with the game upcoming using these expansions and Race for the Galaxy: Brink of War going to be the deciding rubber match.

Here's how this game went:

Turn ONE:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Develop; R&D Crash Program, Interstellar Prospectors; VP: 3
ROBOT: Develop, Settle; Imperium Seat, Deserted Alien Colony; VP: 10
(NOTE: Nice, right out of the gate, the FIRST development the Robot flips is a six-pointer AND it gets a 4-point Alien world. Still, for Galactic Developers, R&D Crash Program is not a bad one to start.)

Turn TWO:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Develop; Mining Robots; VP: 4
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: Trade; 6 point Development Chip; VP: 17

Turn THREE:
ME:
Settle, Produce; Smuggling World; VP: 4
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce; VP: 17
(NOTE: Slight break here for me as the Robot flipped ALL his draw pile without finding a non-military world!)

Turn FOUR:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Consume: Trade; VP: 5
ROBOT:
Explore, Consume: X2; VP: 19

Turn FIVE:
ME:
Develop, Produce; R&D Crash Program -> Consumer Markets, Earth's Lost Colony; VP: 9
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce; Prosperous World; VP: 21

Turn SIX:
ME:
Develop, Consume: Trade; R&D Crash Program, Radioactive World; VP: 13
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce; Drop Ships, Galactic Engineers; VP: 28
(Note: Yes, I got a SECOND R&D Crash Program.)

Turn SEVEN:
ME:
Develop, Settle; R&D Crash Program -> Galactic Federation, Biohazard Mining World; VP:23
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: X2; Prospecting Guild, Deserted Alien Library; VP: 43
(NOTE: That was a good jump for me this turn and I had more 6 cost developments I wanted to get out, but the Robot had almost doubled me now and I thought it was going to be a Robot blowout.)

Turn EIGHT:
ME:
Develop, Produce; Mining League; VP: 32
ROBOT:
Settle, Produce(*); VP: 43
(NOTE: While I DID want to Produce on this turn, it was/is also a good stalling technique against the Robot once the Robot already has it's Economy maxed out. The Robot choosing a Produce action with Economy maxed is a no-op action for it and can be chosen by the Robot with either the Produce roll on the die or the * roll on the die since the Robot always matches right to left on the track. AND I got lucky again this turn that the Robot, for the second time, flipped all its cards on a Settle action and found NO non-military worlds. Meanwhile I got out another six-cost development.)

Turn NINE:
ME:
Develop, Produce; New Economy; VP: 42
ROBOT:
Develop, Produce (*); Galactic Salon; VP: 45
(NOTE: This time, I chose Produce specifically just to try to hope to block the Robot again and for the second turn in a row, the Robot complied and rolled a *. Bringing out my third six-cost development in as many turns and I'm right back in this one!)

Turn TEN:
ME:
Settle, Consume: X2; Expanding Colony; VP: 53
ROBOT:
Settle, Consume: X2(*); VP: 55
(NOTE: I had one more six-cost development in my hand but not enough to pay for it this time even with Galactic Federation's help. VPs were running out and with the Robot at 5 Economy, this was really my only play this turn to go with Consume: X2 and hope the Robot would NOT choose the same. But it did, and Game Over!)

FINAL VP: ROBOT: 55, ME: 53

Ahhhh.... Live by the *, die by the *, as the Robot rolls a * for the third time in a row on the final turn. Anything else and I would have won, 53-50. Still, coming from being 43-23 down, I didn't feel like this was a bad game despite it being a loss for me. On the other hand, of course, the Robot had three turns, including the final turn, where it turned up NO non-military worlds after having chosen the Settle action. So, it also could have just as easily have been a blowout Robot win after all.
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Antonello Piemonte
Germany
munich
Bavaria
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DocSavage2001 wrote:
... before I remembered I had forgotten ...


had to read that twice, having hard time to disentangle cause and effect ...

on a more relevant note: great reports, thanks for sharing, I have yet to try the RftG robot and reading this certainly puts more pressure on that .. cry
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David Arlington
United States
Memphis
TN
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anto wrote:
DocSavage2001 wrote:
... before I remembered I had forgotten ...


had to read that twice, having hard time to disentangle cause and effect ...

on a more relevant note: great reports, thanks for sharing, I have yet to try the RftG robot and reading this certainly puts more pressure on that .. cry


Thanks! LOL, I think I MEANT to say "realized" instead of "remembered" but I can't change it now because your response is so good!

Dave
 
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David Arlington
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TN
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This is my third of THREE plays of RFTG this month. All games will be on Easy Mode with one six-point development chip available.

In the first session (I won over the Robot 56-50), I used the Base game plus only the Race for the Galaxy:The Gathering Storm expansion. The second game included the Base Game, the Gathering Storm expansion AND the Race for the Galaxy: Rebel vs. Imperium expansion. I lost that one by a 55-50 score to the Robot.

Now, it's time for the THIRD and deciding rubber match of this series, using the base game, and ALL three expansions (in this 'arc') including the final Race for the Galaxy: Brink of War expansion. This expansion introduces some new start worlds and the Prestige mechanic to the Solo game. More on that later.

No picture again of my tableau for this game, sorry. I keep packing everything away for the next game and then go, "DOH!!"

This game I had a choice of Uplift Mercenary Force (military) or Old Earth (non-military) as my start worlds. I almost selected Old Earth, but saw Reptilian Uplift Race in my starting hand and despite not having any Military worlds, decided to change my mind and go with Uplift Mercenary Force. The Robot went boring and conservative (LOL!) with Alpha Centauri.

Here's how this game went:

Turn ONE:
ME:
Explore +1 +1, Develop; Expedition Force; VP: 1
ROBOT: Develop, Produce; 6 point Development Chip; VP: 6

Turn TWO:
ME:
Settle, Settle; Reptillian Uplift Race, Galactic Scavengers; VP: 3
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: Trade; Investment Credits, New Vinland, Galactic Developers; VP: 10
(Note: Robot gets three cards out that turn, no big points cards, but already five cards in its tableau.)

Turn THREE:
ME:
Explore +1,+1, Settle; Imperium Fuel Depot; VP: 4
ROBOT:
Explore, Settle; Prosperous World; VP: 12

Turn FOUR:
ME:
Settle, Consume: Trade; Mining Mole Uplift Race; VP: 6
ROBOT:
Explore, Consume: X2; Alien Rosetta Stone World; VP: 17

Turn FIVE:
ME:
Settle, Produce; Diversified Economy, Ravaged Uplift World(P); VP: 7, Prestige: 1
ROBOT:
Develop, Produce; Pan-Galactic Mediator(P), Rebel Cantina; VP: 18, Prestige: 1
(Note: With a blue, green and brown world out, Diversified Economy seemed like a good play. Ravaged Uplift World is a -1 immediate to score, but gains me one Prestige every Produce phase I have the most Uplift Worlds, so it is worth it. Fortunately, even though the Robot gets it's own Prestige world this turn, it gives away the Sole Prestige leader title with its Produce phase getting me one as well.)

No Prestige Leader, 1 VP apiece
Turn SIX:
ME:
Develop, Consume: Trade; Mining League; VP: 15, Prestige: 1
ROBOT:
Settle, Consume: X2; VP: 25, Prestige: 1
(Note: The Robot craps out, finding no non-Military worlds in its draw pile, but stays comfortably ahead with the Consume: X2.)

No Prestige Leader, 1 VP apiece
Turn SEVEN:
ME:
Settle, Produce(P); Mining World; VP:20, Prestige: 2
ROBOT:
Develop, Consume: Trade; VP: 30, Prestige: 1
(NOTE: Robot has empty draw pile and only draws one and finds no development! The Robot's early lead in building the tableau is petering out and giving me time to come back yet again.)

Dave Prestige Leader, 1 VP and 1 card
Turn EIGHT:
ME:
Settle, Consume: X2(+X1 - Prestige Bonus); Imperium Capital(P) VP: 47 (including 2 Prestige)
ROBOT:
Settle, Comsume: X2; Universal Symnionts; VP: 40 (including 1 Prestige)
(NOTE: Knowing I would be playing Imperium World and getting a third prestige this turn allowed me to use one of my three Prestige points to select the Consume: X2 Prestige Bonus. With Mining League giving me 3 points for two brown goods and Diversified Economy giving me another 3 for the brown, blue, green goods and then multiplying that x3 for 18 VP ended up giving me the come from behind win. I more than doubled my total in that last turn alone.)

FINAL VP: ME: 47, ROBOT: 40

Once again, I lucked out with the Robot having two turns where it had actions to bring out cards and came up empty due to running out its draw deck.

One thing I want to say about the solo game and using the Prestige rules from Brink of War expansion. I think having the Prestige in play for games against the Robot makes the difficulty a little too easy. There are only a couple of Robot worlds that do anything with Prestige, the rest will only get whatever they luckily turn up. That makes it easy for the human player to take advantage of the Prestige bonuses and advantages. When playing against the Robot using Prestige rules, I would suggest kicking the game difficulty up a level from where you're normally at.

Next time I play (not this month, I am sticking with my THREE games especially with me up 2-1!), I will be going up a difficulty level.
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