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Subject: Imperial agenda : what to purchase and when to play it? rss

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alexandre Boureau
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I am about to start an Imperial Assault campaign as Imperial Player, and I was wondering which would be the best way to handle agenda cards :
- Are the side missions and forced missions worth it? You deny a rebel side mission in the case of a side mission, or have them play a mission with a neutral outcome or a negative one, but 3-4 agenda points is a lot regarding how many you get for each mission.
- Do you favor 1 time/campaign agenda cards(the cards that get discarded or shuffled back into the agenda deck) or 1 time/mission (the cards that get depleted) cards?
Concerning the 1 time only agenda cards, given that the only mission that really matters is the last one, unless a single agenda card gives you a high chance to turn a loss into a win, it seems pretty risky to me to "burn" one before that.
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Jo Bartok
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you can't circumvent side missions.
I don't know if the forced are worth it... wait until you are at 4-5 threat or so.
 
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Richard A. Edwards
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Galdred wrote:
- Are the side missions and forced missions worth it? You deny a rebel side mission in the case of a side mission, or have them play a mission with a neutral outcome or a negative one, but 3-4 agenda points is a lot regarding how many you get for each mission.

Good question. I think it depends on several things.

True they can be costly, but there are several advantages.

Some Agenda cards, like "Dark Obsession" do get put into play as a side mission, forcing the Rebel players to deny themselves a chance to play a different side mission they would rather go on or giving you a Reward (in his case, Darth Vader as an Imperial Ally!)

When isn't Darth Vader worth 3 Influence! And if the Rebels decide to go on that mission, they give up a chance to do a different side mission in that campaign slot. And if they lose, you still get Darth!

So in part it depends on the Rewards you get.

"Means of Production" - "Imperial Industry" reward
"Breaking Point" - "Supply Deficit" reward

Forced missions don't take a slot in the campaign, they occur outside of the normal flow and so it won't reduce the number of side missions the rebels can choose. And they're 4 Influence! But they can be nasty to the Rebels and bring their own rewards.

"Impounded" - "Special Operations" reward
"Wanted" - "Old Wounds" reward

I think in part buying them depends on how many Influence you have, what other Agenda cards you draw in that upgrade phase, and how well the Agenda cards drawn work with your Imperial class cards.

And if the Rebel players have one of their personal (red) side missions active and are eager to play it, that might factor into whether or not you think you can get an Agenda into play that they will pass on and give you the reward for free so they can go on the mission they really want.

There are so many potential factors, it's hard to make a blanket statement about whether or not any given card is "worth it" without knowing all the factors.

Galdred wrote:
- Do you favor 1 time/campaign agenda cards(the cards that get discarded or shuffled back into the agenda deck) or 1 time/mission (the cards that get depleted) cards?

Back to there are so many factors! Hard to tell without specific situation. If I only have 1 or 2 Influence points and the Rebel Heroes won the last mission and spent a lot of XP to power up, I may need to spend my Influence NOW in order to gain some advantage to try and win the next mission so I gain more XP/Influence in order to catch up before they get too far ahead.

And of course if I spend them then I'm not saving them up and won't be able to afford the bigger cards for some time.

Usually if I'm winning missions as the Imperial player I save my Influence but if I'm losing I tend to spend it.

Galdred wrote:
Concerning the 1 time only agenda cards, given that the only mission that really matters is the last one, unless a single agenda card gives you a high chance to turn a loss into a win, it seems pretty risky to me to "burn" one before that.

The last mission (finale) only "matters" in terms of "winning" the campaign. In truth, much of Imperial Assault, the campaign game, is the story and experience of how it all unfolds. This is not a mechanical, calculating Eurogame of trying to out chess-play your opponent to win bragging rights. It's an experience that goes on over a dozen games, each of which can be a great, fun experience whether you win or lose.

That being said, if you hold your Agenda cards for the finale, you may well lose many of the earlier missions along the way. Losing missions allows the Rebel heroes to get stronger and stronger, thus potentially causing you to lose the finale.

You have to try and keep equal or ahead power-wise with the Rebels throughout the campaign and hold them back whenever you can. Then pull out everything you can at the end. Don't waste one-shot cards when you don't need them, but use them to win if otherwise you'd lose any mission along the campaign. I wouldn't save them up for the finale if it meant losing an earlier mission.

Really great questions.

And I expect as the Villain/Ally packs are released and more Agenda sets are available that we'll see a lot of discussions about which sets are "best" though I imagine a lot will depend on what sort of story/experience campaign you want to play more than on which might give you a 2% better chance of winning a particular mission. And there we may all differ as to our favorites based on our play styles and thematic interests.

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alexandre Boureau
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Thank you for your answers. The forced missions rewards seem very powerful, so it probably all depends on the chance of success of the missions :
Old wound, specifically is really a crippling card.
Special operations is not as bad, as you probably won't be able to use it well on every mission (you need to have officers available, and then, it takes 2 turns for them to pay for themselves, but in longer missions, or if you start with officers, which is one mission out of 3, it can be quite potent).
I'm torn about Darth Vader too. It's +5 threat for 1 agenda seems great, but having the whole deck centered around Vader when you canno add him as ally for the decisive mission(last one) is odd. I wish you could substitue him for some other ally in this mission, as 3 AP is quite steep a price (having Darth Vader take part in too many missions sounds a bit unthematic toot).
 
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alexandre Boureau
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I had a closer look at the agenda cards :
I would say all the agenda granting attachments are auto include if you intend to go with technological superiority, agents of the Empire, and Imperial Industry should be included if going for the TS deck. However, it depends on how winnable the Impounded mission is (if the Rebellion is favored, it makes it hard to recommend it, given its steep price).
But the Impounded mission rewards only works with leaders, so ISB becomes the next auto include.

I find it very hard to resist the urge of For the Right priced (high value target gives +threat level once/mission after you defeat a hero. You should definitely defeat one hero at times, and old wound is really a crippling card if you manage to beat the wanted forced mission, but I don't know which side this mission favors...).

It is harder to decide between the other 3. I would definitely take Imperial discipline if going with the military might deck, but otherwise. Retaliation is too tempting (supply deficit can be really crippling if you manage to get it out early), and weakness revealed should really help focusing a player down.

I'm not really convinced about Darth Vader cards : 2 inf for 5 threats one time is quite steep, and the other are a bit redundant + Vader is already included in some key missions), that said, it is hard to pass being able to add him whenever you want, so if I really wanted to have him in, I would drop Imperial Discipline (if playing something else than Military Might), or Imperial Agents (if playing Military Might). I wish the Royal champion were out, as he has has more appeal to me as an ally (faster, easier to budget, and can be played in more critical missions).

This is just some theorycrafting from me, as it would really depends on the mission balance, especially for forced missions.
 
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