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Star Trek: Ascendancy» Forums » General

Subject: A (very late) early look at Allies rss

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William Towns
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CAUTION: This post contains a number of speculations that are complete guesses on my part. I have no inside information, so all my conclusions are likely a little wrong here and there. But hey, wild speculation is fun so enjoy!

With Gale Force 9 doing the Ferengi preview and hinting at the new Ally card type I decided to cowboy up and finally post some of my Gen Con pictures. So first things first, here's a picture of some Ally cards:




Above are three Ally cards. The first feature to notice is the game text. The Rigelians card is a trade agreement, and the Ferengi Arms Dealer has a special rule which states "You may use Production instead of Research to upgrade weapons. If you held this card during your Build phase, pass this card to your left in Maintenance." The Ferengi preview article stated that Ally cards are part of the exploration deck, so my guess is you explore a planet, and if you draw an Ally you get to place it in front of you like a research advancement. So what is the number value in green? At first I thought it was a new resource, but let's look at a second picture...



Above you see three more ally cards and a crisis card below it, all cards with the number values in green (Pardon the picture quality, these were displayed behind glass). The crisis card game text, Writ of Accountability, states "Roll a Diplomacy (6) Test. If you succeed, this card has no effect. If you fail, return or discard all Trade Agreements you hold. Succeed or fail, shuffle this card into the remaining deck instead of discarding it." Since the Writ of Accountability number is a 6, I conclude the number is the Diplomacy value of the card.

Now it's time for my wild speculations on how Ally cards and Diplomacy will work in the game, based on the cards, my logic, and my views of Gale Force 9's gaming tendencies. Diplomacy is likely a target number to roll for and beat on any Ally or Crisis card, likely with Ascendancy values and possibly Production you're willing to pay added to whatever you roll. You beat the number, you pass the Crisis/take the Ally card. If you fail the roll and can't or won't pay, the Crisis happens or the Ally remains on the planet.

As far as Ally cards go, there will likely be a cap on how many Ally cards you can possess at one time, probably linked to your empire's Ascendancy value to keep rules simple to understand. It may also be a hard cap of 3 since having 4 Ally cards at once could be overpowered. Players will likely be able to discard Ally cards at their leisure to stay under the cap. Finally, the Ferengi will likely have an advantage with Ally cards somehow, probably in their Advancements deck. It is their expansion, after all. Let me know what you think--am I right, or am I way off? Only Gale Force 9 knows for sure!
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Grish
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I think everything you said is well thought out and reasonable. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the pictures.
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