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Subject: AI Parasites rss

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Matt Watkins
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A couple of questions regarding the solitaire game, as described in the living rules:

1) Do the AI parasites ever perform red queen attacks? I'm playing that they do, but only if they can't promote or purchase mutations. In other words, the priority is 1) promote, 2) purchase a new mutation, 3) red queen the host if possible, 4) promote itself and try to reattach to whichever host will give it the most cubes.

2) I assume the AI always refuses red queen attacks if it can.

2) The rules state that the AI is hostile until it becomes an endosymbiote. What if I assimilate it into my microorganism as a foreign gene by red queen? Can I use it to make purchases?

3) Will the AI attach itself as a hyperparasite? To the other AI parasite? Will it try to supplant other parasites?

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Adam Gastonguay
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1) No. And trust me, you don't want to make them any more powerful than they already are.

2) Yup.

2.5) Again yes. The game is hard enough, so when you're lucky enough to Red Queen them to death, enjoy your extra purchases.

3) No to hyper-parasitism, but it will supplant other parasites if it can get more cubes. If you have a parasite with only one cube and you roll a side that could steal two from you, that one will dash over and grab the two, kicking the weaker one out. They're jerks like that.

As a caveat, this is only from remembering from my playtests, so smarter people may override me, but there you go.
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Matt Watkins
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Thanks much! It's not necessarily bad to have a parasite; I've found I can out red queen them pretty easily, and if they have metabolic chromosomes or mutations, they can earn me extra catalysts. They tend not to be very robust against events, so can be marginalized into usefulness by a complex micro with lots of mutations.

If they can't red queen than the red queen ability isn't very useful for my micros. Though I guess I could attach the other player parasite so that its biont can become an endosymbiote later, then use red queen to steal back the diseased cube (though that makes the parasite less robust.) I've found that it's easier to ensure endosymbiosis with either refugia competition early on or use an intermediate organism and HGT to make foreign genes.

I'm also playing that:
1) AIs will only use specificity re-rolls to re-roll errors, starting with 6's. (Even in the unlikely even that they have enough error shield to protect against triple 6's.)
2) AIs will use fission to buy two mutations if they can.
3) AIs will use sex to roil a mutation deck that they can't buy the top card from. (They roll to choose randomly if there are more than one such deck in active rows.)
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Adam Gastonguay
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Red Queen is still useful in that you need more Red Queens than them in order to use it. Nothing's worse than planning on getting them and they buy a Red Queen on that turn.

1) Me too.
2) Me too.
3) Me too.

As for them earning you extra catalysts, I didn't think you can use anything the parasites have for your own gain (until they are your endosymbionts or whatever).

I may be remembering an old rule, though.

Yeah, I just checked:
Quote:
For each protein dice rolled in a Microorganism’s Darwin Roll, receive a number of Catalysts equal to the number of red Chromosomes (Metabolism) it has. For each triple you roll, you add one Catalyst to the tableau pool your Organism resides in.
• Color. The Catalyst color earned by Bacteria Biosynthesis is indicated by the color of the disk shown by the “METABOLISM CHROMOSOMES” (upper left). For Parasite Biosynthesis, it is the color of the Parasite Card. You cannot take a Catalyst if the pool is at its limit (B3) for that color.


So you get it if you're rolling for the Bacteria and the discs go to you, but when you roll Autocatalytic for the Parasite, the Parasite's owner would get the discs, not you (and since NPCs don't get discs, it doesn't matter if they roll 1s, they only spend your own discs).
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Matt Watkins
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CthulhuKid wrote:
So you get it if you're rolling for the Bacteria and the discs go to you, but when you roll Autocatalytic for the Parasite, the Parasite's owner would get the discs, not you (and since NPCs don't get discs, it doesn't matter if they roll 1s, they only spend your own discs).


It clearly says that triples earn catalysts for the host's tableau; I guess I assumed that was true for protein dice as well.
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Adam Gastonguay
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Matt_W wrote:

It clearly says that triples earn catalysts for the host's tableau; I guess I assumed that was true for protein dice as well.


Huh. Maybe I was making it harder on myself! Yeah, I see it right there. I would assume that, too.

Think I'll have to wait for an official ruling on that one. Maybe that's why I lost all the time...yeah, that's the ticket.

Edit: And yes, in the Glossary for Biosynthesis it states "Generation of Catalysts from the soup to the pool of the tableau you reside in."

Dang.
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Matt Watkins
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The change notes say that this was actually a change for the final publication version (C3), so understandable that you weren't playing that way before.
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Adam Gastonguay
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Certainly one of the problems we had in playtest was that the game was so damn hard. Players could just sick parasites on each other and the idea of macro life became laughable because bacterial life surviving more than a turn or two was unusual. We did a handful of things to alleviate that, and that must have been one of the last ones.

Gotta say, I like it. You still risk the thing grabbing your cubes then rolling a bunch of 6's and dying off the next turn, but it could also roll a bunch of 1's and get you discs, so that's pretty awesome.

Looking forward to the physical product.
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Phil Eklund
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Matt_W wrote:
A couple of questions regarding the solitaire game, as described in the living rules:

1) Do the AI parasites ever perform red queen attacks? I'm playing that they do, but only if they can't promote or purchase mutations. In other words, the priority is 1) promote, 2) purchase a new mutation, 3) red queen the host if possible, 4) promote itself and try to reattach to whichever host will give it the most cubes.

2) I assume the AI always refuses red queen attacks if it can.

2) The rules state that the AI is hostile until it becomes an endosymbiote. What if I assimilate it into my microorganism as a foreign gene by red queen? Can I use it to make purchases?

3) Will the AI attach itself as a hyperparasite? To the other AI parasite? Will it try to supplant other parasites?


In the Living Rules, I added some sentences to cover the cases you mention. Did I clarify the questions? Help me improve this section.

C1. THE SOLITAIRE GAME (Parasite AI developed by Jon Manker of Ion Game Design)
The solitaire player chooses two of the four player colors, maintaining separate tableaus and tableau pools for both of his colors. He is allowed a turn for both of the colors in each phase.

• Solitaire Victory Conditions. Achieve a marine win by ending the game with Bionts of both colors in marine Macroorganisms, either as two marine Macroorganisms or as a single Macroorganism with an Endosymbiont. Achieve a terrestrial win by doing the same in terrestrial Macroorganisms.

• Parasite AI. One Biont of each of the two colors not chosen is used to enable one non-player controlled (NPC) Parasite. The turn order for these two NPC Parasites follows the rules for their color. Each is hostile until assimilated as an Endosymbiont or Foreign Gene. During its turn in the assignment phase, a random side of the NPC Parasite will try to attach to the Host that will give it the most allowed Diseased cubes. However, it can’t become a Hyperparasite.

• AI Biont. For the NPC Biont, set a dome on top of a cube. In this fashion the NPC Biont can be distinguished from the Player Bionts.

• AI purchasing. The NPC Biont always uses its Host’s Catalysts for its purchase. Determine which Mutations it has Catalysts to buy, then randomly select among them with dice. The NPC Parasite always upgrades its Mutations first before buying a new one. AIs will use fission to buy two mutations if they can.

• AI Specificity. AIs will only use Specificity re-rolls to re-roll errors, starting with 6's.

• AI Sex. AIs will use sex to roil a mutation deck that they can't buy the top card from. (The choice is random if there is more than one such deck in active rows.)

• AI Red Queen. AIs always refuse Red Queen attacks if they can. They cannot themselves perform Red Queen attacks.

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Matt Deuber
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Maybe a dumb question but..

How many players is a solitaire game in regards to catalyst limits?

Is it two player, or four because of the AI parasites. I'm thinking two, but I just wanted to be sure.
 
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Dom B.
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mdeuber wrote:
How many players is a solitaire game in regards to catalyst limits?

Use 2-player rules. This has been clarified in the living rules.
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