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Subject: Sabotage Probe and Interstellar Rocket variants rss

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Brian M
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Some people have expressed a dislike of the confrontational, but not very useful, Sabotage and Rocket cards. While the Probe might be used to stop an opposing ship from reaching a demand card before you do, mostly they just serve to whack another player.

The Rocket card seems particularly ineffective for this; you cost yourself one action to cost either one player two actions or two players one action; leaving the players you haven't hit at an advantage relative to you and everyone you did hit.

At the suggestion of one of the players, we tried playing without scoring until the end, and found it made the game more enjoyable, but not scoring during the game makes it even harder to use these cards to (as Chris Farrel put it) "whack the leaders".

Hating to leave anything out, however, I've been brainstorming other things these cards could do. How about:

Interstellar Rockets:
After completing an action with this card, place up to two black cubes in your spaceships or depot. These occupy space like resource cubes and can be traded like resource cubes. When a ship moves, it may discard one black cube it is carrying to move to any planet, not just an adjacent planet.

(Note that you cannot spend a black cube and then refill it with another cube before leaving the current planet).

Now instead of the Interstellar rockets being offensive weapons, they are booster rockets to enable your ship to quickly cross space. It would open up new options as far as being able to quickly complete orders from the player across the table.

Sabotage Probes:
After completing an action with this card, place up to two of your color cylinders on any one or two mines controlled by opposing players. This can also be used on fusion mines, mine complexes and multi-mines. Be sure to place the cylinder in a clearly forward position so it is not confused with a cylinder completing a demand! The next time the player produces resources from that mine, they must return your cylinder along with the same type of goods they produced from the stockpile. These are placed on the sabotage drone card and may be stored there until they are transferred to a ship or depot.
A mine may only have one sabotage cylinder on it at a time.
If your sabotage probe card is storing resources, you may not place a timer on it. You may not place resources on it other than with the sabotage action.
If there is a shortage of cubes of the appropriate color, they must be split between the activating player and the sabotaging player. The sabotaging player receives the extra cube, if applicable.

Example: ZARTOK activates her sabotage probe and places a cylinder on FROKLA's blue MineKomplex and RU'UL's multi mine.
When FROKLA's Minekomplex next is activated, he takes two blue resource cubes for himself from the supply, then also takes two blue resource cubes from the supply and gives them to ZARTOK, along with his sabotage cylinder.
When RU'UL's multi mine activates, she decides she wants a yellow cube; she takes one yellow cube from the supply for herself, then gives one yellow cube from the supply to FROKLA (along with his cylinder).

This lets you get two actions worth of production out of one timer, though it may be a bit riskier, as your target might not produce the color you want or might decide to not use the mine at all. This would also help spread out the advantage of fusion mines, and make converters more useful as they would not be subject to sabotage.

Any thoughts?

(Edit: Whoops! Added a 'not' in the statement about putting goods on the Sabotage probe)
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