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This is an optional houserule that can be implemented in order to deter players from taking turns 'soloing' a skillcheck.
soloing skillchecks is extremely strong human play because:
-cylons will not want to solo skillchecks themselves because they lose so many cards for the humans gain, but refusing to do it when it's 'your turn' calls you out as definitely being a cylon
-spiking other peoples solochecks is impossible without being caught out as definitely being the cylon
Solo-cost: If only 1 'human' player played into a skillcheck, increases the difficulty and the partial pass (if necessary) by 3 points each.
Cooperation Bonus: If every single 'human' player contributed to a skillcheck, reduce the difficulty and the partial pass (if necessary) by 1 point each.
After all cylon players have revealed, the cooperation bonus no longer applies to future skillchecks, but the solo-cost still does.
People will still occasionally solo checks, but the added expense means they wont be able to do it again for a very long time, which reduces the amount of times in the game that the human team will implement that strategy.
I thought of it because quite often late-game you will have a player who already has 8 or 9 cards, draws their full 5, and then on the crisis stage says
'Oh, I have loads of high value ones now that i've saved up, and I have to discard anyway so you may as well leave this skillcheck just to me'
which is strong human play, but seems like a cheesy tactic just because it's unspikable, so it blocks cylon sabotage.
...Well, it doesnt block it but it blocks it being able to be done secretly.
- Last edited Tue Jan 6, 2015 4:04 pm (Total Number of Edits: 5)
- Posted Tue Jan 6, 2015 3:39 pm
Ossian Grr aka "Josh"
I think this is already self-regulating and there's no need for house rules like this.
If it's the Cylon's turn, it's a valid tactic to say "Oh, I have loads of high value ones now that I've saved up, and I have to discard anyway, so you may as well leave this skill check just to me"..
And then everyone passes, and looks expectantly at the Cylon, and he passes.
I probably would've added 2 extra cards from DD, but this works too.
FTR, I don't mind solo-ing skill checks, but that's just been my groups. We don't use them enough, so we actually lose. In more uncommon cases, some perceptive people notice that suspected cylons keep claiming they can't contribute skill cards to a skill check but often have a hand full of them. They get called out, which ends up being the right call.
In another game, a not so subtle pre-sleeper Boomer said she'll solo a skill check. It ended up failing at 7 below the difficulty, so it can cut both ways. Luckily, Cap6 was there to bail her out with an XO.
This is an issue that has bothered me for some time.
However, the problem will persist since players can work around the penalty by having one other player put in a skill card of no consequence or little value.
Additionally, the -1 "bonus" makes the skill check mechanic easier to overcome once all "humans" contribute. (Once Cylons are revealed, do humans still get the bonus? Maybe, I misinterpreted.)
In my opinion, the problem exists due to three primary factors:
1. Players are now able to maintain a hand of skill cards with higher values than before, and;
2. The printed value on Crisis checks cannot compete with the higher values of skill cards players are able to maintain in their hand of skill cards.
3. The dilution of the Crisis deck results in less pressure on players' hands of skill cards. E.g. There are far too many crises that do not put pressure on players' hands of skill cards.
I've considered a few fixes and am working on a few others. However, I believe the problem can be addressed if there is more pressure put on players' hands of skill cards and if Crises get a "+X" boost to their strength.
I feel the Crisis mechanic is only "balanced" when playing the base game. Players cannot solo skill checks as easily as they are able to do so now. Additionally, the base game's tighter Crisis deck put more pressure on players' hands of skill cards with the "President Chooses" Crises.
President Chooses Crises are important because in the 70 Card Base Game Crisis Deck, there are 8 Food/Water shortages. In any game of BSG, you can expect to draw 40-50 cards from the Crisis deck, so you will likely encounter at least 4 or 5 of these Crises. These Crises force discards from the "Current Player" which is incredibly important in my opinion. It is important since, typically, the biggest contributors to any skill check are usually the players who are about to draw--whereas the players who contribute the least are players who just had their turn.
Now with that being said, I believe the Base Game was designed to put the President Player in control of players' hands of skill cards as a resource. Through Food and Water shortages, the President must decide which is most valuable: Food or Skill Cards. Personally, I like the idea of this, especially when the President Title has lost most, if not all of its importance after mixing in each expansion.