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Subject: Air Strike Negotiations: Japan and Curtis LeMay rss

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instinctive
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The Manhattan Project wrote:
Negotiations: These deals... can only involve the use of the Air Strike spaces on the Main Board or Fighter Attacks and Bombing Runs.

Japan: ...OR Activate Air Strike...

Curtis LeMay: ...optionally perform 1 AIR STRIKE action.

(1) May the use of Japan and Curtis LeMay be part of an agreement? E.g., "on your turn you will use Japan or Curtis LeMay to..." (My guess is NO as they are neither a Main Board action, Fighter Attack, or Bombing Run.)

(2) If a player agrees to make a Fighter Attack or Bombing Run, and when their turn arrives the Main Board Air Strike spaces are filled, must they use Japan or Curtis LeMay if those options are available? (Note this is different from agreeing to use them. Really not sure what the answer will be here.)

(3) If a player agrees to make a Fighter Attack or Bombing Run, may they use Japan or Curtis LeMay instead of the Main Board Air Strike?

Example: I am Japan and I agreed to make a Fighter Attack but have no Fighters when my turn arrives. I'm off the hook! I use the Main Board to build two Fighters. Must I now use Japan to carry out the Fighter Attack if possible?
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Brandon Tibbetts
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Excellent questions! I regret that the rules as written are not more clear on these matters. I will reply with answers based on the "spirit" of the rules.

Before the expansions came along, the rule in the base game rule book was sufficient, as fighter attacks and bombing runs were only possible via the air strike spaces.

It was not our intention to extend the binding negotiations to the expansions at all. It was our intention, before the expansions, that the structure of every negotiation would be "you will activate the air strike space and do X, Y, and Z as a result."

Essentially you cannot make binding negotiations involving the use of Japan or LeMay. Ordinarily in games when rules don't say you CAN do something, then one naturally assumes you CAN'T, but in this case given the way the base game rule was written I can definitely see how it caused you some doubt involving the expansions.

instinctive wrote:
(1) May the use of Japan and Curtis LeMay be part of an agreement? E.g., "on your turn you will use Japan or Curtis LeMay to..." (My guess is NO as they are neither a Main Board action, Fighter Attack, or Bombing Run.)

No.

instinctive wrote:
(2) If a player agrees to make a Fighter Attack or Bombing Run, and when their turn arrives the Main Board Air Strike spaces are filled, must they use Japan or Curtis LeMay if those options are available? (Note this is different from agreeing to use them. Really not sure what the answer will be here.)

No. If the Air Strike spaces are filled, a player is completely off the hook from any binding negotiation.

instinctive wrote:
(3) If a player agrees to make a Fighter Attack or Bombing Run, may they use Japan or Curtis LeMay instead of the Main Board Air Strike?

I would say that, had the deal been framed as "you will conduct Air Strike actions A, B, and C," and the Air Strike space IS available, that you'd have the option of using LeMay or Japan instead to fulfill your obligation, since the means by which you'd obtain the air strike action(s) was not specified.

instinctive wrote:
Example: I am Japan and I agreed to make a Fighter Attack but have no Fighters when my turn arrives. I'm off the hook! I use the Main Board to build two Fighters. Must I now use Japan to carry out the Fighter Attack if possible?

This example is different from (3) above and is really more of a scenario (4). You are never required to use LeMay or Japan, or to use them in any particular way should you decide to use them.


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instinctive
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Thanks for the response! I very much like the philosophy that Japan and Curtis LeMay lie outside the realm of negotiations.

To expand and extend your response, I like the idea that negotiations are limited to the following framework:

- I/You will not use the main board Air Strike.
- I/You will not use the main board Air Strike to conduct missions against...
- I/You will use the main board Air Strike, and conduct the following missions...

Brandon Tibbets, The Designer wrote:
instinctive wrote:
(3) If a player agrees to make a Fighter Attack or Bombing Run, may they use Japan or Curtis LeMay instead of the Main Board Air Strike?
I would say that, had the deal been framed as "you will conduct Air Strike actions A, B, and C," and the Air Strike space IS available, that you'd have the option of using LeMay or Japan instead to fulfill your obligation, since the means by which you'd obtain the air strike action(s) was not specified.

This seems a slight end run around the Japan/LeMay negotiation immunity, as Japan/LeMay are effectively using their power to strike a more flexible deal. I would be tempted to always require the main board Air Strike as I outlined above, thus not exempting Japan/LeMay from tying up their main board action if they want to negotiate a coordinated strike!

(As an aside: negotiated deals strike me (haha!) as the heart of the air strike mechanic. Yes, it costs both you and your target when you make an air strike, so in a 3+ player game negotiation is critical to maintain balance. This game really evokes that cold-war feeling!)
 
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