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Star Wars: Rebellion» Forums » Variants

Subject: Solitaire Thoughts rss

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Aaron Thorne
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As of this writing I have played this game solitaire four times, with varying results. Because I have seen others ask for solitaire variants, I figured I would share my experiences and thoughts on such an idea. These are in no particular order.

1. My first two games I decided to personally play the Rebel side, while I tried to randomize Imperial actions. This was not satisfying, as I achieved easy victories both times as the Imperial "player" just kind of randomly moved around the board and did stuff, but the actions were not focused towards any kind of goal. So, I learned that the "automated" side really needs a way to have a set strategy that the side works towards.

2. My third game had me playing the Imperial side, with a randomized Rebel side, to see if the different nature of the two sides led to different results. The answer is "no," and I as the Imperial player walked into the Rebel Base with no problem. The Rebel side even mostly vacated the base for me before I attacked it, which was nice of them, if stupid.

3. In a solitaire game, you are going to know where the Rebel base is. I can't find any way around that without simply eliminating part of the Rebel player's options. And how would you know if you attacked that system without looking at the card? I know that someone created a website that can somewhat keep track of that for you, but I tend to play solitaire games for a couple hours, move on, and then come back later, so I would have to leave that website up for days. That isn't gonna happen.

4. My fourth game had me intentionally play both sides, using written orders for each side each turn which were plotted out at the very beginning of each turn. I determined a set strategy for each side prior to the game (Imperial side was focused on finding the Rebel Base ASAP, while the Rebel side was focused on eliminating any Imperial ability to build capital starships and focus on building their own capital ships, to limit Imperial mobility). Then before each turn I looked at each side's available missions and wrote out specific actions, in order, for each side to take. Then I played the game, using the written orders. A character could be assigned to a mission, assigned to command units, or assigned to respond to the other side. This worked fairly well, though the game was a Rebel rout because the Imperial strategy wasn't as good as the Rebel strategy. It was fun, though, and fairly tense through the first five turns before it became obvious the Rebels were gonna get away. This method does take a lot of time, though. You need to give it a good 45 minutes per turn if you are putting thought into it.

5. Some kind of "if/then" decision tree to run one side would be ideal, but that would be a LOT of work and I don't expect to have the time or patience to attempt putting something like that together. In the meantime, the next time I play this game solo I'm gonna try my "write down all the orders" idea again and see if I just got lucky the first time or if it continues to be fun.

6. There is no good way to deal with the fact that the "Imperial" side is gonna know where the Rebel Base is when playing solitaire. I have tackled this by giving the Imperials orders like "move fleet" when there wasn't what felt like an obvious target to go after. When I use such an order, I randomly determine which Imperial fleet moves, and where it moves to. This does hamper the Imperial side somewhat, but I haven't figured out how to fix that without randomizing the Rebel movements as well, which is unsatisfying. More work needs to be done.
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James Cheng
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Thank you for sharing! This is indeed a difficult task to design a solo game out of the Rebellion when hidden information plays a big part in the strategy. I hope to see more discussion as we can't always find someone to played the game
 
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Joe Pilkus
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Aaron,

There is a web-site which allows you to randomly "draw" the location of the Rebel Base, while you as the solo player invest your time as the Imperial Side. You may launch moves into various sectors and make guesses via the site.

Cheers,
Joe
 
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Thomas with Subtrendy
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The Professor wrote:
Aaron,

There is a web-site which allows you to randomly "draw" the location of the Rebel Base, while you as the solo player invest your time as the Imperial Side. You may launch moves into various sectors and make guesses via the site.

Cheers,
Joe


Just curious, anyone have a link to that site?
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Joe Pilkus
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Found it...

Enjoy:

http://starwarsrebellionsolo.com/


EDIT:
The goal here is not to make the game a solo game and the app does not implement any kind of AI.

This is a Probe Deck App for those who would like to play both sides without knowing where is the rebel base. (For learning the strategies of the game or for whatever other reasons).

Open source code:
https://github.com/Marc477/StarWarsProbeApp
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Aaron Thorne
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This does look pretty good. The problem, of course, is that you need to keep the web page up the entire game, so if you do what I like to do and play a couple turns a day, you would need to leave that website up for many days.
 
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Matt Kruse
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One thing I've been contemplating is a solitaire system that is used in a lot of other solitaire games. Rather than an annoyingly cumbersome ai tree flow chart (I hate these). Instead remove all the objective and mission cards from one side (probably the rebels would work best). Then for their actions rolling dice with 1 representing an uprising, 2 representing an imperial planet getting sabotaged, 3 representing a change of loyalty, 4. representing a buildup of new forces etc... and then using the probe deck with all the planets to pick from as to where these events occur. You would then also have an attack phase where you roll dice again with 1. being an attack of all forces in one region, 2. being another region etc. It would of course have that element of randomness... but you could kind of simulate it as an uneven rebellion that's happening all over. Obviously, this would take a lot of changing and fine tuning, but mostly what I'm saying is with a game like this that is REALLY tied to player vs. player interaction. You might need to change some major aspects of the game and make kind of a whole new game from it.

Basically instead of the cat and mouse game you could create a game that's kind of similar to something like pandemic where you as an empire are trying to manage and mitigate a rebellion that is spreading. Maybe with the win conditions instead of finding the secret rebel base it might be controlling a certain number of planets to shut down the rebellion.
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Aaron Thorne
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Matt, what you just described sounds an awful lot like how Struggle for the Galactic Empire plays out. In that game you run the Empire and you have to hold on as internal enemies arise, aliens attack from the outside, and all sorts of things happen across the Empire that you have to react to. I hadn't thought about pushing things that direction but it does make some sense. You are correct that it makes for a very different game, though.
 
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Aaron Thorne
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I just played another solitaire game, this time using the website thing. Once I figured out how to work it, I decided that it was helpful, and it made for a more enjoyable game not knowing where the Rebel Base was.
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bob labine
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The only drawback from a Rebel point of view is you don't know when to trigger the evacuation order since you don't know where your own base is. I guess some house rules would need to be added in case the Empire stumbles on the rebel base. Maybe they can flip the top 4 cards of the probe deck "for free" and move if they can to "simulate" that on a 1-on-1 game the rebel player would have probably evacuate the base the turn before the fleet moved in the system.

Or maybe they can flip the 4 cards for free if they have a leader with the logistic icon sitting in the leader pool, otherwise they can't. If they have 2 leaders with logistic in the leader pool they could draw 8 probe cards ...

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