The boards here are mostly in agreement that you can win the game with four hard knocks just as long as you have all the winning conditions. What happens if the last card in a players hand would be the third matching threat but the dove is showing. All other players have no cards. Can that player play his/her last card and win the game. No players would have a card in their hand and the dove is showing, is that not a winning condition? or should all the cards in the no mans land go on top of the dove?
I run through Rahdo's Runthroughs and make right what once went wrong (via annotations)
I think you win...
I don't like it... it doesn't make much sense winning the game by failing the mission but the rules for this and the situation discussed in the other thread seem to allow for that type of win...
The rules just say that when the Dove is visible and the players don't have any cards in hand they win... nothing else is checked, you don't do the support phase, you don't check for hard-knocks and you don't do the moral drops phase of the round...
It appears the confusion is, where in the turn sequence are the victory conditions checked?
If you go by the placement in the rulebook,the victory conditions are checked at the end of the "Support" step. (The rule about being defeated due to 4 Hard Knocks specifies that this check is done after resolving the Support step). And the Victory Condition rule is included in that same box on page 8.
Thusly it stands to reason that the Victory Conditions are checked after cards from a losing mission are returned to the Trials Deck.
I'll also post this comment in the other similar thread.
PunTheHun checked with the designer and reports the following: "the failure of the mission comes first, as it is a direct and immediate consequence of the card play. So, you play a card, handle its immediate consequences (they are part of the card play), and only then you check for victory. Which means, in our case, that you do not win."