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Subject: Variant Race: Gomtuu rss

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Paul Brown
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I have not fleshed out this idea enough but was hoping for some ideas. The Gomtuu are a race so alien they are unable to communicate with other races and hence cannot have diplomatic relations.

The Gomtuu ships are grown, not built. They start with a cuiser instead of an interceptor, but fewer than normal materials. Interceptors can be "born" at cruisers and dreadnaughts for 2 materials. Ships can grow one level each future round, from interceptor to cruiser for 2 materials and from cruiser to dreadnaughts for 2 materials.

Starting technology is interceptor bay so the young can be carried, and cruiser and dreadnaught start with one where the usual empty slot is.

I think this idea could be a great race if fleshed out but i barely get a chance to play the game normally let alone test this race. Ideas would be appreciated.
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Nathyr
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I like this concept. What about this:

Starbases are hatcheries. You start with one instead of interceptor in starting system. Starbases can produce interceptors (Nymphs) for cost TBD based on balance. Cruisers (Juveniles) and Dreadnaughts (Adults) cannot be built but must be grown from Nymphs. At beginning of upkeep phase, can pay cost TBD to feed Nymph(s) to grow into Cruiser(s) or to feed Cruiser(s) to grow into Dread(s). Growth happens in a ship's current sector and new ship replaces smaller ship ready for next round (think of cleanup phase as the molting / cocooning time). Adults (Dreads) can establish new hatcheries (starbases) by being in same system and paying cost TBD. Unlike Pyxis, ships cannot grow during the middle of a round or go backwards to smaller sizes. This would justify cheaper costs (whereas Pyxis pay a premium for ability to change sizes).

Main problem will be balance. Starbases play a heavy role in defense and this system would encourage spreading them out rather than stacking them at a choke point. Also, the need to plan ahead for dreads and cruisers (by breeding interceptors) is much less flexible than simply buying a dread in a system of your choosing. This system completely eliminates virtual fleets, which are a major strategy in Eclipse. So this would have to be a balanced with some major cost discounts / tech / or something.
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Paul Brown
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Using starbases as the hatcheries is a great idea! I think having interceptor bay and the total cost of the ships being cheaper (2 for interceptor, 4 for cruiser, 6 for dreadnaught) makes up for the lack of virtual fleet ability. Just like Unity, the race will have to plan ahead and will be less flexible in the short term but have more options in the long term. The ability to carry the smaller ships along with the larger allows the race to more easily build huge fleets, but they take time to grow.

I feel like starbase tech and interceptor bay at the start is a little much, but maybe this can be offset by fewer starting science or even lack of a science planet.
 
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Nathyr
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I like the thematic reasons for the interceptor bay, but the down side is that the part isn't all that great (at least I rarely see it picked). Plus it costs 2 energy, which is going to outstrip base energy supply on the blueprints. So I think you have 4 options if you are intent on using that part:

1. You boost base energy on cruiser and dread blueprints. The balanced way to do this would be by removing a ship part slot on the blueprint and sticking both the bay and the extra energy outside the ship slots (like how they handled the extra energy needs of the Shapers with their Soliton cannons).
2. Same as above but stick the interceptor bay in a slot currently filled with a +1 Hull ship part
3. Same as above but instead of removing a slot and boosting energy outside the ship, you just install a second +3 source in the open slot on both blueprints.
4. Give the tech for the bays as a starting tech, but don't preinstall it, allowing the player to use it as desired.

Now for the cons: For option 1, you are getting less flexible ship designs in trade for a part most people don't use or want. Option 2 also has the less flexible ship design trade off, but this time it's only for extra energy, which still probably seems not worth it. For options 2-4, you are essentially making use of interceptor bays optional, and I think most people will decline to use them. But, they are still going to pay some cost for having been given that tech for free (no starting science planet).

So if you are going to keep with that part, here's my idea: you use option 1 above, making the interceptor bay and extra energy (at least 2) pre-built on both cruisers and dreads and remove a ship part slot on each. But then you make interceptors (Nymphs) immobile (i.e. No drive and can't have a drive). This gives back an extra slot on interceptors (preinstall a +1 computer in drive slot, maybe?) and makes them transportable only by use of interceptor bays. I like this trade off bc it makes interceptor bays essential for the race, gives back the missing ship part on the cruisers and dreads by putting it on interceptors, and it's thematically appropriate (think ants carrying around nymphs bc they can't crawl yet).

So the lifecycle would look like this:
Interceptors (nymphs): No drive; grow into cruisers
Cruisers (juveniles): Can carry nymphs; grow into dreads
Dreads (Adults): Can carry nymphs; can create starbases
Starbases (hatcheries): can hatch new interceptors
 
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Davy Ashleydale
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I think this would actually be a good idea for an AI race. Just come up with some rules for how they move and attack, and all of a sudden there is a "dummy" player that everyone is playing against.
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Trevor Schadt
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Very neat idea, but I can't get past the concept of reading the name of the race as G.O.O.T.M.U..
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Dorian Hawkins
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My play group doesn't use the Rare Technologies because our experience with them has been overall negative.

I do like the idea of creating races which utilise the Rare techs in some fashion.

I was thinking of a race that used biological spaceships. So why not give them Sentient Hull and Interceptor Bays?

I do feel they need something else. Perhaps they have access to more Dreadnoughts (4 instead of 2?) than everyone else and gain 2 VP for every Dreadnought at the end of the game but they cannot build them, they have to grow them, taking a number of turns, actions and a lot of resources?

If you wanted to take it further, what if the race wasn't using biological spaceships but WERE huge spaceborne aliens that communicated via manipulating radiation? The other species cannot figure out how to communicate... but you would need to figure out rules for how they operated without colonising worlds :/
 
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Chris K.
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DTHz wrote:


If you wanted to take it further, what if the race wasn't using biological spaceships but WERE huge spaceborne aliens that communicated via manipulating radiation? The other species cannot figure out how to communicate... but you would need to figure out rules for how they operated without colonising worlds :/


Love that idea ...

How about this:
Their cubes don't represent population, but some kind of resource gathering capability and their Ships have that effect.

So when one of their ships enter a system that is not under anyone's control, they immediately get to place a disc and cubes on all planet slots that they can use. They don't use colony Ships.
However, when their last ship leaves a sector (or is destroyed) they immediately remove the disc and return all cubes to their respective tracks (no graveyard).

They may only use the influence Action in Systems where they have Ships, rather than the usual adjacency rules. Or they may not use influence at all and their ships ALWAYS place discs and cubes where they are.
On an explore they may move their ship into the newly discovered sector instead of taking control for free as usual so that they can take control with their racial ability.

Also like the idea of alien communication which should result in no ambassadors and probably a bad trade rate. Or even a ban on trading to balance for extra tech they get.
 
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Dorian Hawkins
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chrisdk wrote:
DTHz wrote:


If you wanted to take it further, what if the race wasn't using biological spaceships but WERE huge spaceborne aliens that communicated via manipulating radiation? The other species cannot figure out how to communicate... but you would need to figure out rules for how they operated without colonising worlds :/


Love that idea ...

How about this:
Their cubes don't represent population, but some kind of resource gathering capability and their Ships have that effect.

So when one of their ships enter a system that is not under anyone's control, they immediately get to place a disc and cubes on all planet slots that they can use.
However, when their last ship leaves a sector (or is destroyed) they immediately remove the disc and return all cubes to their respective tracks (no graveyard).

They may only use the influence Action in Systems where they have Ships, rather than the usual adjacency rules.
On an explore they may move their ship into the newly discovered sector instead of taking control for free as usual so that they can take control with their racial ability.

Also like the idea of alien communication which should result in no ambassadors and probably a bad trade rate. Or even a ban on trading to balance for extra tech they get.


Interesting.

While I wonder why giant living space whales might need money, I do appreciate the need not to totally reinvent the game

Some good ideas.

1. They can only place an Influence token or take an Influence Action in a hex where they have at least 1 ship (remove any Influence token when the last ship leaves the hex);

2. They don't colonise worlds (so don't use colony ships) but automatically harvest (occupy) the resources of worlds where they have a ship in a system they control;

3. When the last ship leaves the system (by either being blown up or simply flying away), all cubes are immediately sent to the graveyard; and

4. Whenever they taken an Explore Action, they may immediately taken a Move Action (they must pay for this additional action as normal).

Seem right?
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Chris K.
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As to "money", Orange is "Food/Energy" to them, rather than Money :-).

DTHz wrote:

1. They can only place an Influence token or take an Influence Action in a hex where they have at least 1 ship (remove any Influence token when the last ship leaves the hex);


I would tend to not let them use an influence action at all. Otherwise you run into some interaction effects on when a ship allows you to place a disc where it was removed with influence. Also it gives them another drawback by not easily being able to manipulate grey-planet systems for resource distribution.

DTHz wrote:

2. They don't colonise worlds (so don't use colony ships) but automatically harvest (occupy) the resources of worlds where they have a ship in a system they control;


Seems right.

DTHz wrote:

3. When the last ship leaves the system (by either being blown up or simply flying away), all cubes are immediately sent to the graveyard; and


Cubes should not go to the graveyard. They should go right back to the track.

Otherwise you could have ships just hopping through systems, putting cubes down, leaving and putting them to the graveyard and effectively get the production from many systems while actually only controling one with a ship and a disc at the end of the turn.

Also the "no graveyard" effect should balance the "not limited by colony ships" a bit.


DTHz wrote:

4. Whenever they taken an Explore Action, they may immediately taken a Move Action (they must pay for this additional action as normal).



I would rather say that they get to move one ship into the system for free if it is free of ancients. It replaces the regular "free half influence action" that explore normally includes in that situation. And since they can only have discs where they have ships, wherever they can legaly explore they also have a ship available to do it. Of course they MAY have to then give up their original system for that.

Maybe they should start with an extra interceptor for that ... Or their Homesystem starts with a free (maybe printed on the Hex?) Starbase in addition to the interceptor.

Edit: Or their Hatcheries work similarly to the Exile Orbitals: They don't get starbases, but their Orbitals count as Hatcheries ...





 
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Dorian Hawkins
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chrisdk wrote:
As to "money", Orange is "Food/Energy" to them, rather than Money :-).

DTHz wrote:

1. They can only place an Influence token or take an Influence Action in a hex where they have at least 1 ship (remove any Influence token when the last ship leaves the hex);


I would tend to not let them use an influence action at all. Otherwise you run into some interaction effects on when a ship allows you to place a disc where it was removed with influence. Also it gives them another drawback by not easily being able to manipulate grey-planet systems for resource distribution.


Hmmm... they don't need the Influence Action, then.

But what if you over-extend your empire and cannot pay for your actions? Since you auto-control hexes you have a ship in / aren't already controlled by another player, you don't need to take off / replace influence tokens...

What if: at Upkeep, if you cannot pay for your actions taken, you must destroy ships from until enough Influence tokens are replaced on your control board that you can pay for... in this way, you cannot feed your spaceships and they die from starvation

chrisdk wrote:
DTHz wrote:

2. They don't colonise worlds (so don't use colony ships) but automatically harvest (occupy) the resources of worlds where they have a ship in a system they control;


Seems right.


chrisdk wrote:
DTHz wrote:

3. When the last ship leaves the system (by either being blown up or simply flying away), all cubes are immediately sent to the graveyard; and


Cubes should not go to the graveyard. They should go right back to the track.

Otherwise you could have ships just hopping through systems, putting cubes down, leaving and putting them to the graveyard and effectively get the production from many systems while actually only controling one with a ship and a disc at the end of the turn.

Also the "no graveyard" effect should balance the "not limited by colony ships" a bit.


Agreed.

chrisdk wrote:
DTHz wrote:

4. Whenever they taken an Explore Action, they may immediately taken a Move Action (they must pay for this additional action as normal).



I would rather say that they get to move one ship into the system for free if it is free of ancients. It replaces the regular "free half influence action" that explore normally includes in that situation. And since they can only have discs where they have ships, wherever they can legaly explore they also have a ship available to do it. Of course they MAY have to then give up their original system for that.


Agreed.

chrisdk wrote:
Maybe they should start with an extra interceptor for that ... Or their Homesystem starts with a free (maybe printed on the Hex?) Starbase in addition to the interceptor.

Edit: Or their Hatcheries work similarly to the Exile Orbitals: They don't get starbases, but their Orbitals count as Hatcheries ...


Their ships need to properly thought through. Like I am leaning more toward that their ships should have different blueprints, being slightly bigger and having 1 or 2 systems automatically built in (e.g. all have 1 built tile of Sentient Hull and Cruisers and Dreadnoughts both have a tile of Hangar Bay too).

I think that they should have more ships than everyone else (perhaps 9 Interceptors, 6 Cruisers and 3 Dreadnoughts). Perhaps their ships cost additional Money (Food) to 'birth' and 'mature'?

This is because, what differentiates this race from the others is that they want to build a lot of ships but don't want to lose them.

They don't get Ambassadors and have odd rules about how they control star systems.

They should get VPs for successfully maturing a ship to adulthood (Dreadnought) like 3.

I like the idea that their Starbases and Orbitals are Hatcheries... but can a hatchery control a star system? Or is it more a 'nest in space'?

If so, if they are vulnerable, i.e. automatically destroyed when the last ship leaves the hex, then perhaps each Hatchery built is worth 1 VP at the end of the game instead of maturing ships? IDK I quite like the idea of maturing ships to adulthood being a VP earner
 
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Wim van Gruisen
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Some questions to your collective brainwave:
* If starbases are hatcheries, does that mean that the Gomtuu start with starbase technology as well?
* How do tech advances work here, theme-wise? Is this the Gomtuu genetically improving themselves? How do you genetically get the ability to fire plasma missiles or use wormhole generators?
 
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Dorian Hawkins
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Whymme wrote:
Some questions to your collective brainwave:
* If starbases are hatcheries, does that mean that the Gomtuu start with starbase technology as well?


Hmmm. I think it might be more like the Exiles and the Unity in that they have a fourth ship blueprint instead of the Starbase blueprint.

Oh! What if they don't have starbases at all and actually have a fourth ship blueprint: Nymphs, Juveniles, Adults and Elders.

They get 8 Nymphs, 6 Juveniles, 4 Adults and 2 Elders.

Costs (speculatively) are 1 Money and 1 Material to birth a Nymph; 2 Money and 2 Material to mature to a Juvenile, 4 Money and 4 Material to grow to an Adult and 8 Money and 8 Material to grow to an Elder.

The Money aspect is part thematic, part because Material is harder to come by, enabling them to actually grow a fleet.

Adults and can birth Nymphs. They start with one Adult.

Thoughts?

Quote:
* How do tech advances work here, theme-wise? Is this the Gomtuu genetically improving themselves? How do you genetically get the ability to fire plasma missiles or use wormhole generators?


Depends

I quite like the idea of them 'learning' to use their sophisticated biological systems in new ways represented by the use of new technology.

So they aren't so much firing plasma missiles but learning to manipulate energy in a new way.
 
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Chris K.
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DTHz wrote:


Quote:
* How do tech advances work here, theme-wise? Is this the Gomtuu genetically improving themselves? How do you genetically get the ability to fire plasma missiles or use wormhole generators?


Depends

I quite like the idea of them 'learning' to use their sophisticated biological systems in new ways represented by the use of new technology.

So they aren't so much firing plasma missiles but learning to manipulate energy in a new way.



Or they are "crewed" by a symbiontlike species that works on such more physical "inventions".

Allthough I prefer the "abstract" excuse that they are basically applying evolution like traits to give themselves these abilities as "biological equivalents" very much like the Tyrannids in 40k.
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Chris K.
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DTHz wrote:
chrisdk wrote:
As to "money", Orange is "Food/Energy" to them, rather than Money :-).

DTHz wrote:

1. They can only place an Influence token or take an Influence Action in a hex where they have at least 1 ship (remove any Influence token when the last ship leaves the hex);


I would tend to not let them use an influence action at all. Otherwise you run into some interaction effects on when a ship allows you to place a disc where it was removed with influence. Also it gives them another drawback by not easily being able to manipulate grey-planet systems for resource distribution.


Hmmm... they don't need the Influence Action, then.

But what if you over-extend your empire and cannot pay for your actions? Since you auto-control hexes you have a ship in / aren't already controlled by another player, you don't need to take off / replace influence tokens...

What if: at Upkeep, if you cannot pay for your actions taken, you must destroy ships from until enough Influence tokens are replaced on your control board that you can pay for... in this way, you cannot feed your spaceships and they die from starvation



I quite like that. It makes "overextending" a very costly and unattractive option and certainly gives them a VERY distinct playstyle.
 
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Dorian Hawkins
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Ok I have mocked up the control board and the race summary here;

https://www.flickr.com/photos/dthz/shares/fzo2QR

https://www.flickr.com/photos/dthz/shares/0mjzK5

Please have a peruse and let me know what folks think.

I fully expect them to be either useless or horribly broken in playtesting (which is the point of playtesting).
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Wim van Gruisen
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If you upload the playmat here, I'll add the Gomtuu to the catalogue. Although, perhaps I'll better wait until after a playtest.
 
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