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Twilight Imperium (Third Edition): Shattered Empire» Forums » Rules

Subject: Invading multiple planets question. rss

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Ger Lam
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I see it same as sigma, to some extent.

The fighter ambush specifically states that the space combat against the fighters happens "after landing", but if you lose the combat, the planet will remain uncontrolled, and the ground forces discarded...and planetary landing happens BEFORE invasion combat.
Now, this does NOT affect the space hex itself. You could come with another carrier and drop off troops at planet B. Planet A with the fighter ambush will not interfere.


So you split up your troops during planetary landing and you LAND them on BOTH planets.
Then you reveal the domain counters.(Also stated in Distant Suns Game Options: It is revealed after a player has landed all his desired ground forces there during the Planetary Landing Step.)
Since planetary Landing is not sequential(you can't wait and see how the first landing turns out before commiting to the second one....you have to commit simulatenaously), troops are sent to both planets on the same time, land, and THEN distant Sun kicks in.

Now, assume EITHER A or B is a fighter ambush. That takes place, kills the carrier, and per description, the ground forces for that planet are discarded.(they never even got there).

The OTHERS, though, are well on their way in their assault shuttles, since they have been committed before the attack on their carrier happened.

So even if my first instinct would tell me that fighter ambush should happen before, and kill the carrier and prevent all participating troops from landing somewhere, strictly per the rules, the other planet should be "safe" no matter the order.

Because:

1.: Commit troops to planetary landing.
2.: (As per wording, after landing the troopsReveal Distant Suns.
3.: Resolve Distant Suns(here, fighter ambush speaks in singular about the planet...not planets).
4.: Invasion Combat.

Therefore: I am of the opinion that the OTHER planet(without fighter ambush) is safe, either way.
The second, valid, variant would be that "all landing ground forces are discarded", which would mean BOTH planets are not safe, either way.

Invalid, in my eyes, is sequential handling(in that it would matter wether you reveal A or B first). Either you see it as fighters ambushing the Carrier before ANYTHING happens(but then how do they know you're going to land...are they psychic Naalu Fighters?), and all ground forces being killed, or do you see it as "troops well under way, fighter ambush happens, carrier(and other ships) attempt to rescue the landing capsules, get wiped, together with them."

To me, immersively, #2 is more welcome, as fighters don't "block" a system, suggesting they only have very limited range and can't pursue.
Also, a space battle "fails" if you decide to retreat. So if that lone carrier survives one round of combat and pulls back, sure, the landing troops on that planet are destroyed in their assault shuttles...but do the (short-range) fighters then fly over to the OTHER planet and kill those shuttles in time, too?

If the landing happens via carrier, and not via Assault Pods/Shuttles, then WHY are the ground forces discarded if the carrier flees? As in, "Sir, while we attempted to land on the planet, 3 fighter groups intercepted our projected course. As you ordered, we jettisoned the troop containers, marked it as failed invasion, all dead, and fled to the next jump gate as early as possible."

Na, in my book, it makes most sense that Things are simultaneous and the other planet is always save, courtesy of flavorful delivery methods.
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Lucas Skinner
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sigmazero13 wrote:
Grand Champ wrote:
I would even suggest a third possible outcome.. and my favorite interpretation: The rules state that you reveal the counters after sending GFs to the planet. If fighters successfully destroy the carrier, it is too late to stop the invasion as landings on all planets have already taken place. I realize this contradicts the wording of the counter, but I like it for flavor reasons and you might suggest it as a house rule if no one can agree on the 2 you presented.

So even the GFs that landed on the planet would still land, despite the fact that thematically, the token is supposed to represent the fighters ambushing the carrier BEFORE the invasion?

It does get messy with multi-planet invasions, yes, but thematically what the fighter ambush represents is the fighters coming out to attack you before the actual invasion even happens.


But see that's my point: How can fighters ambush the carrier before the invasion, if they are not revealed until after the invasion has begun?

The rules for Fighter Ambush make you back up time to before you invaded.

In that case, you should be able to back it up to before just that planet was invaded, or if you rule all invasions are simultaneous then you'd have to back up time to before either invasion and live the with those consequences.
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Scott Lewis
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Grand Champ wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
Grand Champ wrote:
I would even suggest a third possible outcome.. and my favorite interpretation: The rules state that you reveal the counters after sending GFs to the planet. If fighters successfully destroy the carrier, it is too late to stop the invasion as landings on all planets have already taken place. I realize this contradicts the wording of the counter, but I like it for flavor reasons and you might suggest it as a house rule if no one can agree on the 2 you presented.

So even the GFs that landed on the planet would still land, despite the fact that thematically, the token is supposed to represent the fighters ambushing the carrier BEFORE the invasion?

It does get messy with multi-planet invasions, yes, but thematically what the fighter ambush represents is the fighters coming out to attack you before the actual invasion even happens.


But see that's my point: How can fighters ambush the carrier before the invasion, if they are not revealed until after the invasion has begun?

I'm simply stating what the ambush is thematically supposed to represent You are thinking purely mechanically here.

If there is only ONE planet, there is no mess, and the rules are explicitly clear on how to resolve it - The invasion is canceled if you lose the space combat! It only gets messy if you have two planets

Quote:
The rules for Fighter Ambush make you back up time to before you invaded.

No, not really "backing up time", but simply adding a step that must be done before you finish the invasion, and one that may cancel the invasion. It's not the only one - there are other DS tokens that also "undoes" the invasion (Settlers comes to mind). Fighter Ambush really isn't any different than that.

Quote:
In that case, you should be able to back it up to before just that planet was invaded, or if you rule all invasions are simultaneous then you'd have to back up time to before either invasion and live the with those consequences.

And that is where the crux of the confusion is. It's not quite as messy if the first invasion had the GFs, as neither invasion has been resolved. It gets messy when the first invasion is "successful", and the second has Fighter Ambush. There is no clear ruling on how to handle it - some will say you rewind the ENTIRE invasion sequence if you fail the space combat, some will say the ambush will only affect the planets that have not yet been resolved; both are valid interpretations, and without Corey's ruling on the matter, neither can really be stated as being "right" or "wrong"
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Ger Lam
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sigmazero13 wrote:

And that is where the crux of the confusion is. It's not quite as messy if the first invasion had the GFs, as neither invasion has been resolved. It gets messy when the first invasion is "successful", and the second has Fighter Ambush. There is no clear ruling on how to handle it - some will say you rewind the ENTIRE invasion sequence if you fail the space combat, some will say the ambush will only affect the planets that have not yet been resolved; both are valid interpretations, and without Corey's ruling on the matter, neither can really be stated as being "right" or "wrong"


uhm, yeah, i know i am a bit ignored here, but anyway: There's also group C of people like me, that say all landings are simultaneously courtesy of assault pods.
Thus the fighter ambush will only affect the ONE invasion with the Distant Sun Token.
All the others are SAVE, regardless of the "order" in which you resolve them. Reasoning? See above. Just trying to reinforce view #3 here, as it's the most thematically sound to me(together with #1).
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Scott Lewis
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MordredofFairy wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:

And that is where the crux of the confusion is. It's not quite as messy if the first invasion had the GFs, as neither invasion has been resolved. It gets messy when the first invasion is "successful", and the second has Fighter Ambush. There is no clear ruling on how to handle it - some will say you rewind the ENTIRE invasion sequence if you fail the space combat, some will say the ambush will only affect the planets that have not yet been resolved; both are valid interpretations, and without Corey's ruling on the matter, neither can really be stated as being "right" or "wrong"


uhm, yeah, i know i am a bit ignored here, but anyway: There's also group C of people like me, that say all landings are simultaneously courtesy of assault pods.
Thus the fighter ambush will only affect the ONE invasion with the Distant Sun Token.
All the others are SAVE, regardless of the "order" in which you resolve them. Reasoning? See above. Just trying to reinforce view #3 here, as it's the most thematically sound to me(together with #1).

Except the rules don't support "simultaneous" as written Especially since the fighter ambush token doesn't just affect the invasion force - it potentially affects all the ships in the system!

I'm not saying you can't do it that way, but nothing in the rules suggests anything about them being simultaneous
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Ger Lam
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sigmazero13 wrote:
MordredofFairy wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:

And that is where the crux of the confusion is. It's not quite as messy if the first invasion had the GFs, as neither invasion has been resolved. It gets messy when the first invasion is "successful", and the second has Fighter Ambush. There is no clear ruling on how to handle it - some will say you rewind the ENTIRE invasion sequence if you fail the space combat, some will say the ambush will only affect the planets that have not yet been resolved; both are valid interpretations, and without Corey's ruling on the matter, neither can really be stated as being "right" or "wrong"


uhm, yeah, i know i am a bit ignored here, but anyway: There's also group C of people like me, that say all landings are simultaneously courtesy of assault pods.
Thus the fighter ambush will only affect the ONE invasion with the Distant Sun Token.
All the others are SAVE, regardless of the "order" in which you resolve them. Reasoning? See above. Just trying to reinforce view #3 here, as it's the most thematically sound to me(together with #1).

Except the rules don't support "simultaneous" as written Especially since the fighter ambush token doesn't just affect the invasion force - it potentially affects all the ships in the system!

I'm not saying you can't do it that way, but nothing in the rules suggests anything about them being simultaneous


Well, i see it as simultaneous per the rules, as you have to assign all landing troops initially. You can't land on one planet, see how it goes, then decide to land on the second planet if it worked out, or keep the additional troops on the carrier if it did not.

I can't say i'll land on your less secure planet with bombardment shots and 1 GF and see how it goes...oh, you played dug in and your GF's killed mine...okay, but i need to take a planet in your HS to prevent you from scoring...so ok, guess i'll land on your other planet with the PDS and 4 GF then with my remaining troops.

I'll have to commit before...whatever happens afterwards, happens. The pieces are already set in motion.
Thats why i see it as simultaneous. You can't "wait" for one outcome before deciding what to do next-

if it was sequential, i should also be able to decide NOT to go for the other planet, but rather mount a second invasion on the same one(dropping off more troops).

Also, just on another note: There are instances of simultaneous in the rules as written...Otherwise, there would be no return fire from defending ships after the attacker hits...
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Lyn Lee Fox
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TI rules page 10 wrote:
THE ACTIVATION SEQUENCE
1) Activate a system
2) Move ships into the system
3) PDS fire
4) Space Battle
5) Planetary Landings
6) Invasion Combat
7) Produce Units


TI rules page 33 wrote:
A planet’s Domain Counter is revealed (and its effects resolved) immediately after a player has landed all his desired Ground Forces there during the “Planetary Landings” step of a Tactical Action. After a Domain Counter has been revealed, the active player may not land additional Ground Force units on the planet during the same activation.


SE rules page 20 wrote:
FIGHTER AMBUSH
After landing, a Space Battle immediately starts in the system against the indicated number of local Fighters (allow another player to roll their combat dice). Players may not use Anti-Fighter Barrage in this Space Battle. If the Space Battle fails, then the planet remains uncontrolled, all landing Ground Forces are discarded, and the fighters return to full indicated strength. Discard this counter after a successful Space Battle.


It specifically says after landing. Fighter Ambush does not 'undo' the invasion. What it does do is potentially kill the landing party. That's all. Therefore this would have no effect on the landing party going to the other planet regardless of the order they are resolved.

It seems fairly clear to me. Unless you want to argue that "all landing Ground Forces are discarded" is suppose to apply to all planetary landings in the system. But that seems highly unlikely given that this sentence is talking about how to resolve things for that specific planet ("the planet remains uncontrolled"). If this was meant to affect all planets in the system than it should specifically say that, and it doesn't.

One thing I will say, they seem to be overly loose with their use of the word 'immediately'.
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Scott Lewis
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foxx wrote:
TI rules page 10 wrote:
THE ACTIVATION SEQUENCE
1) Activate a system
2) Move ships into the system
3) PDS fire
4) Space Battle
5) Planetary Landings
6) Invasion Combat
7) Produce Units


TI rules page 33 wrote:
A planet’s Domain Counter is revealed (and its effects resolved) immediately after a player has landed all his desired Ground Forces there during the “Planetary Landings” step of a Tactical Action. After a Domain Counter has been revealed, the active player may not land additional Ground Force units on the planet during the same activation.


SE rules page 20 wrote:
FIGHTER AMBUSH
After landing, a Space Battle immediately starts in the system against the indicated number of local Fighters (allow another player to roll their combat dice). Players may not use Anti-Fighter Barrage in this Space Battle. If the Space Battle fails, then the planet remains uncontrolled, all landing Ground Forces are discarded, and the fighters return to full indicated strength. Discard this counter after a successful Space Battle.


It specifically says after landing. Fighter Ambush does not 'undo' the invasion. What it does do is potentially kill the landing party. That's all. Therefore this would have no effect on the landing party going to the other planet regardless of the order they are resolved.

That's your interpretation of it There has still been no official word on whether this is the CORRECT interpretation

It DOES "undo" the invasion in a way, if the space combat fails, the GFs are discarded and treated as if they never landed at all!
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Lyn Lee Fox
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sigmazero13 wrote:
It DOES "undo" the invasion in a way, if the space combat fails, the GFs are discarded and treated as if they never landed at all!
I see nothing that says to treat it like they never landed. It says they are discarded and that the planet remains uncontrolled. That's hardly the same thing.

It causes the invasion to fail, but it does not "undo" the invasion. Where are you getting the idea that you should treat it like they never landed?
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Scott Lewis
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foxx wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
It DOES "undo" the invasion in a way, if the space combat fails, the GFs are discarded and treated as if they never landed at all!
I see nothing that says to treat it like they never landed. It says they are discarded and that the planet remains uncontrolled. That's hardly the same thing.

To you, maybe. To me, it IS the same thing. The fighters remain, but the GROUND FORCES are destroyed when the SHIPS are destroyed - to me, this directly implies you treat it as if the invasion didn't happen.

Your interpretation is valid, yes. But it's also just your interpretation; until/unless an official FFG answer is forthcoming, it has no more "correctness" than the alternative, and is just your way of viewing the interaction.
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Scott Lewis
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For what it's worth, I'm not even saying you ARE wrong, just that it's not as crystal clear as you paint it to be. TI3's rulebook is far from "ironclad".
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Lyn Lee Fox
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sigmazero13 wrote:
To you, maybe. To me, it IS the same thing. The fighters remain, but the GROUND FORCES are destroyed when the SHIPS are destroyed - to me, this directly implies you treat it as if the invasion didn't happen.
If they were saying that the troops are destroyed as part of the carrier being destroyed, it would be worded a lot differently. For one thing, it wouldn't specifically say "after landing". It should be quite clear that the troops are committed to the planet at that point. For example, the player couldn't retreat from the space battle and get to keep those troops. If they retreat, they could potentially save their carrier, but the landing party is dead.

And please stop with the "that's your interpretation" bit. That gets us nowhere.
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Scott Lewis
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foxx wrote:
And please stop with the "that's your interpretation" bit. That gets us nowhere.

By saying "stop it" basically you are saying "I refuse to acknowledge any other viewpoint".

You've made your point several times now (with no additional information). Thus, I think we're at an impasse, and it's clear which way you wish to play the game. I'm not certain you are right or wrong, but don't play with DS enough to really care. Once the designer chimes in with official word of what the "right" way to play is, then it goes beyond "your interpretation" into "the official word". Until then, it simply IS your interpretation, whether you like it or not. You're viewpoint is no more valid than the opposing viewpoint. The opposing viewpoint is no more valid than yours - it boils down to how you interpret the rules and the intent behind them.

Unless you became the official rules spokesman for TI3?
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Lyn Lee Fox
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sigmazero13 wrote:
By saying "stop it" basically you are saying "I refuse to acknowledge any other viewpoint".
No, I'm saying it gets us nowhere. Instead we should look at why we are interpreting it differently, not simply say "that's your interpretation" because then it acts as a block.

Quote:
You've made your point several times now (with no additional information).
So in other words you think the player could retreat from the space battle and potentially save the ground forces that were landing?
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Scott Lewis
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I guess it's because I've already explained why I think that it COULD be as I've stated. Repeating myself isn't going to help, so I won't do so here. You aren't going to change your mind, and unless I hear something from FFG I'm not going to be convinced either way is "right", so there's really no purpose in further debate. It boils down to "viewpoint".

TI3's rulebook isn't always the greatest. Take Space Mines for example. Reading it, one may think they only apply during the activation phase, but it was clarified that they trigger ANY time ships move there, even during retreats, Warfare II, etc.

The Distant Suns token descriptions are far less "in depth" than the main portion of the rules. Thus, I'm unwilling to take unclear comments that it makes at face value, especially when the implication indicates something else. For instance, with "Fighter Ambush", the implication of the ability is that the fighters intercept your ships as you approach the planet/system. Mechanically, it's triggered when you "land", but it's unclear when the strike is meant to actually take place. Thus, there is validity to those who think that it can cause your second invasion to not happen, if you fail.

My point is, it's not clear, and while it's certainly possible your explanation is correct (perhaps even the likely possibility), it's not 100% certain, and the only way it can get that way is if FFG chimes in via a ruling (assuming anyone has even bothered to post one to them); until that point, your arguments aren't going to convince me that it's clear, any more than mine are going to convince you it's not. You've already made up your mind, and so there's really no point in discussing it further.

I see what your point is and why you came to your conclusion. I just don't think it's the only possible conclusion of the rules, and hence, I am not sold that it's the "right" way. I don't know the designer's intent, but I know enough about the ruleset in general to know ultra-strict readings aren't always valid.
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Lyn Lee Fox
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While I agree that FFG rules are not always the clearest. In fact, they have a tendency to over explain things which can make it harder to understand.

But, there seems to be this idea that the Ambush is suppose to happen before landing, and the rules are very clear that it happens afterwards. I could see how someone might think having it happen before would fit thematically. But looking at how it fits thematically can only get you so far. And when it's directly contradicted by the rules, the rules should take precedence.

I think this is made clearer by looking at the situation where there is only one planet and the player chooses to retreat from the fighters, and does so successfully. To go by the thematic idea of the ambush occurring before, the troops should safely escape with the carrier. But to me, it seems quite obvious by the rules that the GFs will be lost.
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I guess I'm not even convinced you are allowed to retreat from a Fighter Ambush; Distant Suns tokens are different beasts than other players, and I would be inclined to say that retreating is not an option.
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Lyn Lee Fox
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sigmazero13 wrote:
I guess I'm not even convinced you are allowed to retreat from a Fighter Ambush; Distant Suns tokens are different beasts than other players, and I would be inclined to say that retreating is not an option.
It says a Space Battle, thus all Space Battle rules should apply unless it specifically says otherwise (or if they for some reason couldn't apply, but there is no reason retreating couldn't apply here.)

If you want to say that retreating is not an option, that's fine. But the rules as written don't support that. And that really seems like avoiding the point I was getting it. That is, that the rules indicate that the GFs are committed to that planet at the time of the ambush.
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It does say Space Battle... but it also leaves you with some potentially strange (and nonsensical) interactions that I think go against the logic and intent of the game, so I'd definitely never allow it in the games I run.

One example: Assuming that "retreating" doesn't affect a second invasion's forces (which, again, I'm not convinced of).

First invasion is Fighter Ambush. You retreat. Ships leave the system and go to another system with more of your ships.

Second invasion is another Fighter Ambush. Do you fail the Space Combat? There are no ships to fight, so none is ever really started. This is an "undefined result".

Or if the Second Invasion is Settlers, where do they go? Do they "teleport" out of system? If they've mixed in with ships that were already there, how do you track which ships were already there?

Or if the Second Invasion is the automated defenses. Do the ships become
safe? Do they get shot at? Which ships are which?


The problem is, the invasions are supposed to be somewhat simultaneous, so these interactions would not be easily defined; you can claim "this is how it would work", but the fact is, the rules do not discuss these situations specifically, and so you are making inferences that I don't believe are there.

Quite often in TI3, trying to interpret the rules 100% "as written, ultra-literally" is going to lead to more questions than answers, and often isn't really correct anyway, especially when you start getting into undefined interactions. This is the biggest flaw with TI3. I think most of the rules work well in a bubble, but do NOT always work well when put together, especially the more niche rules.

But if you're happy playing it that way, go for it. But I would argue against allowing retreats for Fighter Ambush mechanically, thematically, and interactively (ie, interacting with other effects).
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sigmazero13 wrote:
It does say Space Battle... but it also leaves you with some potentially strange (and nonsensical) interactions that I think go against the logic and intent of the game, so I'd definitely never allow it in the games I run. ...
As I said, if you want to say retreating is not an option, that's fine. But you are definitely house-ruling at that point. Though it's house-ruling to cover for things that are not clearly defined in the rules, which I think is acceptable. However, this still ignores the greater point I was getting at. Which you seem insistent on avoiding.
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Can't we all just get along.


Distant suns are different then a normal space battle. They are not actual units and are not treated as such. This is why AFB and Bombarding is not allowed with these type of combat situations. There is no retreat option here. I have never seen it played differently and would say that to allow it would be houseruling. You can always send an E-mail to Corey to FFG for a complete ruling. There have been so many new ones that they really need to put out a new FAQ version.

Most of the questions and answers from Corey have been posted at one time on the TI3wiki.org but many were lost to the forum change at FFG.

Landings have always been separate and you do declare them at the same time but they are not simultaneous. If you lose to the Fighter ambush the second never takes place. This seems understood from the rulebook and common sense but I guess not everyone reads it them same.

Never known Sigma to get a rules question wrong either and I would agree with him fully on this one.

All the players on the wiki would probably agree to the loss of the landing troops as well. Many more long term TI3 players there and we have the rules pretty well down to a science.

FFG can answer most questions and they usually are fairly quick about it. Never known them to take over a week.
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tawnos76 wrote:
There is no retreat option here. I have never seen it played differently and would say that to allow it would be houseruling.
Is there specifically a rule that says you can't retreat? No there isn't. It isn't mentioned in the rules at all. So saying that allowing them would be house-ruling is just wrong. NOT allowing them would be house-ruling. It doesn't matter how many long time players play it that way it doesn't change that. Unless the company specifically supports it, it's house-ruling. (hell, thats the definition of house-ruling.)

However, house-ruling something isn't necessarily bad. Especially in areas where the rules are not clear, or to avoid potential rules weirdness.
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foxx wrote:
sigmazero13 wrote:
It does say Space Battle... but it also leaves you with some potentially strange (and nonsensical) interactions that I think go against the logic and intent of the game, so I'd definitely never allow it in the games I run. ...
As I said, if you want to say retreating is not an option, that's fine. But you are definitely house-ruling at that point. Though it's house-ruling to cover for things that are not clearly defined in the rules, which I think is acceptable. However, this still ignores the greater point I was getting at. Which you seem insistent on avoiding.

Well, apparently you are missing my point entirely as well then, and I don't really care to debate it further. You're set in your way, determined that you are right and I'm wrong. I can't convince you otherwise.

Yet, for my part, your adherence to "this is what it says, it can only mean one thing" doesn't convince me of anything either, because I've played the game long enough and seen enough discussion (both within the community and from the FFG folks) to know that the rules don't always say what they mean in the best way. Especially a 1-paragraph description of an optional token.

Happy gaming.


(For what it's worth, depsite Tawnos' praise, though, I have gotten many rules questions wrong, in which I thought one thing, but Corey ruled otherwise. I'm not infallible).
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Lyn Lee Fox
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sigmazero13 wrote:
Well, apparently you are missing my point entirely as well then, and I don't really care to debate it further.
I suppose that's a nice way for you to try to save face. But really, I never said "this is what it says, it can only mean one thing". You're trying to paint me out to be more unreasonable than I am, when in fact you seem to unreasonably sticking to "this issue is unsolvable".

As for your comments that the rules don't always mean what they say, so what? Unless the rules simply can't work as is, or there is some reason to suspect that it's in error, then until you get confirmation that a rule is wrong, it should be taken as written.

Whatever. Distant suns is a variant anyway, and not directly supported by the main rules.
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Martin DeOlden
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I think it would make more problems then it would solve allowing a retreat as the cases that Sigma wrote earlier about a double system.

A quick way to finalize this - I will send FFG Corey a FAQ question and ask him if it is allowed to retreat from a Distant Suns Fighter Ambush token.

I can post his reply when it comes back and will play either way he answers.

I do hope they can one day put out another FAQ as there are so many questions that have been asked and answered that are not in the old FAQ.

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