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Subject: A Hard Day's Start... rss

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Pasi Ojala
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Get the Imperial Assault Campaign module for Vassal from http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module:Star_Wars:_Imperial_Assault
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This time I tried a bit more thematic and story-like approach while writing the report. Is it more fun to read?
Play Log Here

A Hard Day's Start...

A 4-player game with all expansions to Kobol, CFB, personal goals, final five, Pegasus appears at the first jump, with Cylon Leader.

1. Simon (jhsa, Cylon Leader)
2. Gaeta (Sat, Admiral)
3. Kat (Ant, CAG)
4. Romo (me, President)

jhsa wins the start player roll, so he gets to pick a character first. Naturally he starts at the bottom of the deck where the Cylon Leaders are. We plead not to always pick Leoben and he finally picks the least-played Simon. Sat wants to go for military leader and picks Gaeta. Ant considers pilots: "Helo is too much an obvious choice. Boomer is fun, but only if you become a cylon." He decides to take Kat, one of the less played ones.

I am left with a political leader or support, but we have some blue draw already. I have played the other political leaders often (Tory and Ellen too), so I pick Romo this time.

My starting loyalty is a Final Five: whoever examines this card is executed.

No Use for Politics

Simon scouts the destination (3 distance for 3 fuel), on Gaeta's turn the game gets a bad start with Sabotage Investigated (9PB) failing, although it is just 9 strength and it should be easy to find out the culprit. It is the first round and we're low on cards, and there is a big negative in the check, so that's why we manage only 8. Morale, food and fuel are lost.

The next crisis is Cylon Tracking Device (10PRB), and we try to pass it, but we fail again (total is 5), and the fleet can not escape being tracked. Another basestar and two civilian ships appear. It would really be great the get a crisis skill check with positive yellow soon.

On my turn I go to Quorum Chamber, but don't draw anything that would help in the situation. I end up with Assign Arbitrator, Mission Specialist and Consult the Oracle. Mission Specialist will be good one to play when I have any idea if there is a cylon in our midst. I get to resolve a Labor Dispute, and rather decide to lose 2 Morale instead of losing jump preparation. I can possibly do something about Morale if it gets too low. Then the basestars shoot at Galactica, one hits our fuel reserve, the other one misses.

Gaeta commands some unmanned vipers and they take out two raiders. Threat of Super Nova (10GRB) does not have yellow positive either, so I can't help at all. This is getting ridiculously frustrating! Let's see if destiny is on our side this time? No, we have a big negative there and we come 2 short (without anyone having or confessing to having Declare Emergency). The skill check adds two raiders, then basestars shoot again, the first one hitting FTL Control, so no quick escapes are possible. We have to stand and fight for a while longer. Simon reveals his Motive "End the Chase". The other shot hits too, this time damaging Admiral's Quarters (the other one in Simon's Motive, btw). In addition we lose one population to the Nova and Galactica is damaged a third time. We lose our food compartment.

It does not seem too good for humans, quite abysmal really. As a consolation, both the fuel and food damage tokens are now out of the game, so they will not cause surprises later. I joke that hopefully Simon can fulfill both Motives before the sleeper, or he'll lose the game with us. I also wish that there will soon be a skill check that has yellow as a positive color.

Kat orders an attack against a heavy raider, but the unmanned viper misses, then hershelf shoots at a raider and heavy raider using Maximum Firepower. Both are taken out with 3 shots. Detector Sabotage (8GB) is failed deliberately, banning looking at loyalty cards for the rest of the game. There's also Trust Instincts in the check, and the destiny is certainly against us. As a consolation, Quick Thinking allows Kat to take a yellow card from the check.

Now I get more yellow, like that could be used for anything! :-) Well, at least I get Critical Situation, and use it and Consolidate Power to draw two greens. I then play Mission Specialist on Kat and draw more yellow (ed note: and seems I forget to do it through the Quorum Chamber, i.e. miss drawing an extra Quorum card). Earth in Ruins (9YGP) threatens us next, but finally yellow is positive! Just what I asked for. But the losses of -1 Morale seems also too much, so I choose to lose 1 food and draw a mutiny card instead. (And the Mutiny card is one that I can't play because I'm a president!) Raiders advance and jump preparation goes forward.

Simon scouts the crisis and leaves it on top. Gaeta repairs some MkVII vipers and draws Legendary Discovery (14PR). Kat and Gaeta say they can help, and I play Investigative Committee. Kat plays 10, I play Iron Will and 6 more, Simon plays 3, Gaeta some more. Destiny provides only 2 minus this time, so we reach 20 and get one distance! In addition to the distance, we're about to autojump, so the situation does not seem that grim anymore for the humans.

Kat moves to Weapon's Control and shoots at one of the basestars with her special, damaging the basestar's guns.

Hybrid in Panic (12PB) calls for purple again, and no yellow. Passing would get us to jump before the heavy raider moves towards the launch tubes, so I help with what I can (2, with Declare Emergency in reserve). We hope there are not that many high cards in destiny this time. The check reveals 4 zeros, all are made +1, and the skill check passes even without them. We get a jump preparation and jump from the Pass effect, Mission Specialist Kat selects the destination from 3 alternatives. We have lost a bit of fuel, but thanks to Legendary Discovery we have only spent one more than normal. Kat picks Cylon Ambush (3 distance, lose 1 fuel, add 1 basestar, 3 raiders, and 3 civilian ships). Pegasus appears, and we hit sleeper.

After Sleeper

I get a plain YANAC card. Then a heavy raider is added to the CFB and we get a jump preparation to finish the crisis.

I'm thinking of using Pegasus' CIC, and can't really think of anything better to do with my cards, so I go for it. I roll with strategic planning. The basestar is damaged twice, and it can no longer launch nor shoot. That was a really good shot!

To continue our good fortunes, we get a Medical Breakthrough (12YGB), and I'm happy to get to play 4 of my yellow cards (most are ones though). We pass the check with 16, all humans players get one skill card and in addition I get 2 engineering cards from Install Upgrades.

Simon scouts a crisis, this time putting it at the bottom (Requisition for Demetrius?).

Gaeta can't fix the FTL Control, and lauches a viper instead to shoot at a heavy raider. He rolls a 6, then uses Calculations to make it a hit, and we don't have to worry about centurions for a while. Admiral Gaeta is then asked if we should Abandon Galactica, but he discards one nuke token instead. Basestar is disabled, so it does not do anything and our jump preparation proceeds.

Kat says she received a good card, and I pretty much can tell it was Major Victory. So, Kat stays in Weapon's Control and shoots at the basestar, guaranteeing a hit with her special, then Major Victory increases our Morale by one. Unfortunately Kat being a Stim Junkie sends her to sickbay. Secret Meetings gives both Kat and Gaeta a mutiny card. (I'm the only one that already has one, so Kat selects Gaeta instead of me.)

I move to FTL Control and then repair it, with some stolen/repurposed equipment no doubt. I have such nice cards now, that I select the skill check on Reunite the Fleet (10YG) instead of randomly discarding. The check has my yellow color too! I just have to decide how much to play on the check. I put in 5 cards. The total comes to 16, so we pass swimmingly, although 2 raiders are added, and three others shoot at an unmanned viper, but it perseveres by just one Evasive from Kat.

Is It the Quiet Before the Sh*t Storm?

It does seem probable that we don't have a cylon. Things are just going too well, so people better not get executed now or the situation can get really bad really quickly.

Simon scouts another crisis (Low Supplies?) and puts it to the bottom.

Gaeta wonders what to do. I point out that the FTL is now repaired, so it is a good time to jump (at pop-3). With Strategic Planning Gaeta throws a 1, but wants to try again. It comes up with a natural 8, so no population is lost. (But we have plenty of people to sacrifice if necessary in any case.)

Gaeta takes us to a Radioactive Cloud (2 distance, 1 fuel, 1 population). Airlock Leak (6PB) threatens Galactica and Gaeta with a sickbay. I decide to play 2 cards into the check to help. The check contains only purple, totalling 17. This time destiny is certainly on our side, but this one did majorly overshoot. Maybe we are not really convinced everyone is human after all.

Kat claims to have such good cards that I choose to send 2 Food from our storage to satisfy Food Shortage in the fleet. For my action I Test the Limits and increase the jump preparation, and with Kat's Strategic Planning the Galactica is not even damaged in the process (I roll a 4). I have a similar situation than Kat on my turn. I don't want to lose all of my cards when Ambushed by the Press, so we let the scandal quiet down, but lose 1 Morale. But we get another jump preparation, and we are ready for another activation of FTL, although we need to catch our breath for a bit untilr the pursuit track and cylons catch up with us first.

Simon scouts the destination (Ed.note: Lion's Head Nebula - 3 distance for 4 fuel, +2 to jump preparation, we had only 4 fuel left) and puts it at the bottom. Gaeta Commands some vipers to perform escort duty. I choose that Rescue Caprica Survivors is a distraction we can't afford (it would've dropped our food and fuel), which drops Morale by one.

Kat cleans straggling raider and heavy raider again in 3 shots. The Olympic Carrier (11YGR) is in danger of losing population and morale. The check totals 20+, and the situation is resolved with no resources lost. Kat receives another Mutiny and ends up in the brig. The CAG title goes to Gaeta (Romo is second to last in the line of succession). A heavy raider moves towards Galactica, but we autojump before it can board. Gaeta takes us to a destination (Dying Star) with 2 distance for only 1 fuel, but damaging Pegasus in the process. The airlock is out of order. Humans only need the final jump.

Just checking that Romo is really low on the CAG succession list, above only Roslin

Easy Sailing

I use Critical Situation and Remo's once-per-game and move Kat to the Hangar Deck, and get her skill cards as payment. And Kat was talking the truth before. There are very large cards of various colors, including State of Emergency. As my action I Launch Scout, but miss the roll. I should've used Strategic Planning for it.

I hope for a skill check in my crisis due to having 16+ cards in my hand, but I come across Dangerous Plots instead. Trying to deal with it one way would put both President (me) and Amiral in the brig, and this close to the end I don't see that would be a good idea. So, the fleet's morale drops by one and I discard 2 skill cards (Remo's OPT reduced the number by one). Unfortunately I still need to throw a lot of small politics cards and other low numbers away to bring myself to the hand limit.

Simon buries another crisis card (Religious Turmoil?). Gaeta moves to the Engine Room to help with jump preparation using his engineering and various other skills, although it turns out there is no complication in the jump preparation. Well, better safe than sorry. Gaeta and me both use our skills to handle Water Shortage. Two basestar and a bunch or raiders catch up, still leaving some cylon ships to the CFB.

Kat receives skills and XO's Admiral Gaeta, suggesting to launch the remaining nuke into the sector with the cylon ships. The Admiral complies, and I help with Strategic Planning. The nuke takes out the whole sector, and Gaeta continues helping with the jump preparation in the Engine Room. Enemy of My Enemy (13YGR) has a jump symbol already, but the skill check would lose one (pass) or two morale (fail), or damage Galactica twice. Kat decides to go with the skill check. I play 4 cards into the check (+18). Simon puts in blue spike (-12). The check passes and only one morale is lost.

Simon says that all Motives can be finished, unfortunately three of them are cylon allegiance.

I move to FTL Control and jump the fleet with Kat playing Strategic Planning. I roll a 5, which is enough with SP to not lose population. Gaeta does not need to nor does reroll.

One morale and population are lost due to unfinished personal goals. The first one (Devastation: Admiral has no remaining nuke tokens) could've been finished if it had been necessary. The one taking Population is Stand and Fight: 10 or more raiders on the main game board.


The Population remained safe and sound in this game!

The Humans have won! The start of the game looked very grim, and although human victory seemed certain for the last few turns, at sleeper I was very nervous about how easy it would be for a cylon to totally demolish us. So, it was still a surprise to not have a cylon in the game (except Simon of course).

Simon also spent all his turns in the Human Fleet, so he could've been both less and more helpful.

Simon reads his Cylon Leader motives (all finished):
- End The Chase (Allegiance: Human - FTL Control or Admiral's Quarters is damaged)
- Fight with Honor (Allegiance: Cylon - Game is over and you have 3 or more treachery cards in hand)
- Subjects for Study (Alleciance: Cylon - Game is over and population 4 or more)
- A False Sense of Security (Allegiance: Cylon - Game is over and morale is 3 or more)

Human Win. Cylon Leader lost, but fulfilled all Motives. End resources: Fuel 3, Food 3, Morale 3, Population 9.

Distance Traveled: 1 (Legendary Discovery), 3 (Cylon Ambush), 2 (Radioactive Cloud), 2 (Dying Star). Only 4 jumps were needed because of the Legendary Discovery crisis.

We have not seen Legendary Discovery very often with the huge all-expansions crisis deck (minus CACs), so it was nice to see it and even nicer to pass it. Game length was only 95 minutes, 120-150min is our norm to Kobol.

Played Crisis:
Sabotage Investigated, Cylon Tracking Device, Labor Dispute, Threat of Super Nova, Detector Sabotage, Earth in Ruins, Legendary Discovery, Hybrid in Panic, Medical Breaktrough, Abandon Galactica, Secret Meetings, Reunite the Fleet, Airlock Leak, Food Shortage, Ambushed by the Press, Rescue Caprica Survivors, The Olympic Carrier, Dangerous Plots, Water Shortage, Enemy of My Enemy
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Janne
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One of my worst plays as Cylon Leader. In hindsight I should've buried Legendary Discovery, since it helped to get sleeper phase after first jump. Another sort of bit mistake was not to bury Lion Head Nebula. And since I was a lone cylon and other players were humans, Simon's handicap was really hindrance to spike skill checks. But anyway, it was still fun.
 
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Pasi Ojala
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Get the Imperial Assault Campaign module for Vassal from http://www.vassalengine.org/wiki/Module:Star_Wars:_Imperial_Assault
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jhsa wrote:
not to bury Lion Head Nebula

I thought you did bury it. But we did not have Cain to blind jump into it, so it did not matter either way. However, not burying it would have given less options to the Admiral, because we were not eager to scout at that point.

At least we had fun with the less used characters and learned something, like proper use of CIC with SP. In this game we did not actually end up blowing Pegasus up when using it.
 
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Janne
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a1bert wrote:
jhsa wrote:
not to bury Lion Head Nebula

I thought you did bury it.


Bad wording. I did bury it but shouldn't have, in case the admiral was cylon after all as it would've caused fuel to go to 0. IIRC my thinking to bury it was to look like that I didn't have cylon allegiance motives ...
 
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Robert Stewart
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jhsa wrote:
a1bert wrote:
jhsa wrote:
not to bury Lion Head Nebula

I thought you did bury it.


Bad wording. I did bury it but shouldn't have, in case the admiral was cylon after all as it would've caused fuel to go to 0. IIRC my thinking to bury it was to look like that I didn't have cylon allegiance motives ...


If the meatbags had gained Fuel, leaving LHN on top would have been great for them...
 
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