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Twilight Imperium (Third Edition)» Forums » Variants

Subject: Distant Suns rules rss

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Thomas Brown
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I know a lot of people on here talk down on the randomness and time cost of playing with the distant suns tokens, but for some reason my gaming group really likes them.

I don't like the rules for dealing with tokens when using diplomacy or other powers where you can take a planet without actually sending someone there. It seems like they didn't want to make things too complicated so they said, "If for any other reason, you are taking the planet, just ignore the dang thing."

Really? So military units landing on the planet get attacked, or poisoned, or held hostage, or die from radiation, or find amazing treasures or technology. But if a diplomat shows up, it all never existed?

So, we play with a little house rule. Just play it like you landed a single ground force with no ability to fight. It is just a little diplomatic shuttle. It makes it pretty easy to figure out what the result should be with each token. Otherwise, diplomacy and diplomacy like effects have the weird power to wipe problems and benefits entirely off the face of whole planets. Of course, in the latest expansion, there are faction abilities that tell you right on the card to ditch the token. The Winnu, for example, can completely discard the Mecatol Rex guardians by sending one ground force. I don't know what we'll do. We may have to give in and join the rest of the world with their all powerful diplomacy effects.
 
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Starkiller
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Thematically you are correct, Diplomacy II doesn't make sense.

However, I am firmly of the opininon sometimes you must go against thematics to make a better game.

In this case, having the counter disappear gives another cost to using Dip secondary. You could be getting rid of 4 TG, or radiation. It makes you ponder to secondary affects of using Dip secondary.
Your way, the Dip secondary is the very best way to take over planets--you get all the good affects and ignore the bad ones during takeover.

Also, Diplomacy II gives the player another way to get rid of a bad counter they probed, giving some variation when it is good; instead of always being the best choice.

Sorry, but this gets a thumbsdown from me.

And I really like the Distance Suns counters, because they liven up the fist couple rounds--otherwise, it feels more like a "getting peices into position for war" execise. (IMHO)
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Andrew Williams
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akinfantryman wrote:
Thematically you are correct, Diplomacy II doesn't make sense.

However, I am firmly of the opininon sometimes you must go against thematics to make a better game.

In this case, having the counter disappear gives another cost to using Dip secondary. You could be getting rid of 4 TG, or radiation. It makes you ponder to secondary affects of using Dip secondary.
Your way, the Dip secondary is the very best way to take over planets--you get all the good affects and ignore the bad ones during takeover.

Also, Diplomacy II gives the player another way to get rid of a bad counter they probed, giving some variation when it is good; instead of always being the best choice.

Sorry, but this gets a thumbsdown from me.

And I really like the Distance Suns counters, because they liven up the fist couple rounds--otherwise, it feels more like a "getting peices into position for war" execise. (IMHO)

This.

Also, with a bit of imaginative thinking, you can make almost anything fit thematically. Just view Diplomacy in a wider sense. Perhaps your diplomatic efforts bribed those rebels & hostage takers into submission, coerced the Galactic council into hiring contractors to clean up the planet, convinced the indiginous population to share rather than destroy their ancient treasures etc etc,.
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Lance Harrop
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I always figured radiation and bio-hazard were booby-traps the natives set that your forces end up setting off.

Easy to see a diplomat NOT causing that.
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Thomas Brown
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akinfantryman wrote:

In this case, having the counter disappear gives another cost to using Dip secondary. You could be getting rid of 4 TG, or radiation. It makes you ponder to secondary affects of using Dip secondary.
Your way, the Dip secondary is the very best way to take over planets--you get all the good affects and ignore the bad ones during takeover.



Actually, if it is a bad effect, you have wasted your time/CC. Biohazard sticks, and you don't get the planet. Radiation is ditched, and you don't get the planet. Hostile locals kill your envoy, stay there, and you don't get the planet. Settlers pop off, and who knows who gets the planet. Hostage situation, pay one or don't get the planet. Automated defense system gets a shot at you, and if they miss, you get the planet. Fighter ambush kills your shuttle, they stay, and you don't get the planet. So, you aren't really ignoring the bad effects.
 
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Starkiller
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???????

Not sure I understand you. By ignore I meant: "Can't loose your ships or troops to the nasty fighters/radiation/hostile local/etc."

If I'm understanding you right (assuming Dip II revealed a bad counter) your variant is basically a probe revealed to all players.

Sure, you're spending a CC to discover that, but so is probing--and you might loose the ship probing.
Great trade; always the best option. Sorry, thumbsdown
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Thomas Brown
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If you actually like the distant suns tokens, like we do, then it might also bother you that they can be so easily discarded with the rules as they are. Our house rule makes the tokens an irrevocable fact on that planet. You can scout it, blast it without looking (and pay the consequences), or send a diplomat that might be killed, but regardless, there is a situation there that needs to be dealt with. You can't just ignore it exists by using Diplomacy.
 
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Scott Lewis
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With Shards of the Throne, Radiation and Biohazard are much less problematic if you send Mechanized Units, as they are immune to both effects.

I'm not really sure why you'd want to make the "bad" domain counters harder to counter, though
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Starkiller
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Deinodon wrote:
If you actually like the distant suns tokens, like we do, then it might also bother you that they can be so easily discarded with the rules as they are. Our house rule makes the tokens an irrevocable fact on that planet. You can scout it, blast it without looking (and pay the consequences), or send a diplomat that might be killed, but regardless, there is a situation there that needs to be dealt with. You can't just ignore it exists by using Diplomacy.

I agree that thematically, it does bother me.

I disagree they 'are so easily discarded'; using a SC or a secondary is hardly cheap, or available in unlimited quantities.

I love doing variations, but I can't just look at thematics when doing variants....gotta look at the affect on gameplay.

And I personally think you are adversely affecting the gameplay. IMHO, personally, thumbsdown.
Presently, Dip secondary is a great way to get rid of known bad counters, and a gamble to use on unknown counters.
Probing is a great way to discover counters, if you don't feel like gambling. (Note I always use the house rule that DD and CL can also probe.)
And you can always take your chances and see what comes up when you land.
I like that balance, thematic or not.

I don't like how you have super-valued Dip secondary, but that's me. If it works for you, great.thumbsup
 
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bob mackenzie
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I liked the duded idea about imagining different scenarios. like bribing locals etc

oh i think im starting to change diplomacy to merge the 2 together, to make it stronger. anyhow i think it should be as it is sorry
 
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