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Subject: The Star-Crossed Alliance rss

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Tim Garrett
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Just played another really great game with Gary today (you can read the summary of one of our previous games, the "Shadow War, here: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1578274/galaxy-wide-shadow-...). Switching it up from our last game together, which went unrecorded, he played Empire, and I played Rebels. Here's a narration, as best as I recall it:


The Plight of the Mon Cal (Turn 1)
The Rebellion began with Mon Calamari declaring its independence from the Empire. The Emperor immediately dispatched an armada to quell the nascent revolution, and the Mon Cal took the initiative and counter-attacked the Imperial fleet around orbit of Saleucami. The battle was a bloody one. On the one hand, the Mon Cal succeeded in their objective, destroying the Imperial Star Destroyer that was assigned to carry the invasion army through a daring Rebel Assault (Turn 1, Reputation 13). On the other hand, the Mon Cal fleet was utterly destroyed in the process. The Empire's propaganda network succeeded in claiming the battle as a Display of Power, and Mon Calamari immediately surrendered to the Empire, reluctantly joining its cause. Rebel operatives, no longer under the king's protection, sabotaged the Mon Cal shipyards and evacuated.

Carrying on the Empire's early diplomatic push, Vader launched a campaign to bring Utapau into the Imperial fold, but Princess Leia foiled his scheme. However, not even she and Mon Mothma together were able to Build an Alliance with the Utapauans.

This left the galaxy at the start of the civil war in a fairly unique place - Utapau was under no-one's control. The rebels had secured an early victory, but had no known forces deployed across the galaxy. The Empire, meanwhile, enjoyed a position of great power in most of the galaxy's sectors.

Bloodbath on Naboo (Turns 2-3)

Naboo had been another early supporter of the Rebel cause, and it was no surprise that it was an early victim of the Imperial navy's efforts, surrendering without a battle. As the Rebels struggled to recover from their Pyrrhic victory at Saleucami, the Empire expanded its influence across the galaxy, subjugating worlds, researching special projects, and commissioning a massive fleet of star destroyers (the Rebels, for their part, had no access to producing Mon Cal cruisers).

The Rebels' next gambit, no less desperate than their first, was to launch a hidden fleet of armed operatives to Malastare. Then, before the Empire could react, they launched an improbable assault on the Imperial battalion stationed on Naboo- which included both light AT-ST and heavy AT-AT armor. Nevertheless, the battle struck something of a Crippling Blow (Turn 3, Reputation 12) against the Empire even as all Rebels involved were killed or captured. Again, the Rebels succeeded at one of their objectives, and again they lost many of their forces in so doing.

The Ever-Tightening Chokehold (Turns 3-5)

The middle part of the war saw the Rebels' hopes become dimmer and dimmer, as the Empire subjugated the majority of the galaxy and built enormous Star Destroyer fleets, exhausting their stockpile, in addition to constructing a massive Super Star Destroyer. Princess Leia was captured, and Obi-Wan failed to rescue her. The Rebels, for their part, were never able to recover from the large battles of the first three rounds, and failed to maintain a meaningful military presence in any system for the duration of the Civil War. Only by luck were they able to commission two Mon Calamari cruisers. However, they would never see deployment in the war.

As if to seal the Rebellion's fate, the Empire brought its technological terror, the Death Star, just a system away from the hidden Rebel base quite early on, escorted by a full complement of TIE fighters. The Rebels, whose efforts to steal the Death Star plans had proved utterly fruitless, were at the Empire's mercy. The Rebel Alliance's efforts seemed to have crossed the stars themselves, and, with no end to the war in sight, they had little hope of victory.

Still, not all developments in this period were negative for the Rebellion. Although they failed to expand their production infrastructure or project straightforward military power, they were able to gather Popular Support (Turn 4, Reputation 11) across the galaxy. Mon Mothma also weakened Corellia's loyalty to the Empire, allowing Han Solo to lead a general Liberation (Turn 5, Reputation 10)of his home planet, a short-lived victory, but a meaningful one nonetheless.

Fate of the Rebellion (Turn 6)

The conclusion of the war was brought on when Yularen's ISB, assisted by Boba Fett, harshly interrogated Leia (a development which her lover, Han, only barely failed to prevent). Forced to identify three potential locations for the base, Leia was still able, thanks to earlier Rebel intelligence, name three systems which she knew the Empire had not scouted- Tatooine, Ryloth, and Malastare, with the former being the base's actual location. The Empire had the Death Star on Tatooine's doorstep, and a fleet likely capable of annihilating the base on Geonosis.

After establishing that Malastare was a false lead, the Empire, rather than guessing between Tatooine and Ryloth, or spreading its forces thin by investigating both, chose to wait for reinforcements to launch a grand assault the next turn. This gave the Rebels time. First of all, operatives were able to sabotage Geonosis's production facilities, and then Lando Calrissian was able, thanks to his contingency plan, to launch a second sabotage operation against Rodia. And at long last the Rebels managed to secure the Empire's plans to the Death Star.

So, with the Empire's forces amassed on the outskirts of the Rebel base, Luke Skywalker, the last of the Jedi, launched a brave assault on the Death Star, with five units of fighters against the battle station and its TIE fighter swarm. If they succeeded, it would likely mean freedom in the galaxy. If they failed, it would spell certain doom for the Alliance.

Casualties at the beginning of the battle were high, as the TIEs and the Death Star were able to shoot down almost half of the Rebels' last hope - the surviving rebel craft only survived due to Luke's exemplary leadership, maneuvering against the Empire and adopting an effective defensive formation.. However, they succeeded in mounting an assault on the trench- only to fail to hit their target, forcing them to face the Empire's unrelenting swarm once again.

All that saved them, this time, was a thoroughly unlucky counterattack by Imperial forces which failed to annihilate the rebel ships. And so they were able to launch a second trench run, this time succeeding in making their shot, thanks to the Death Star Plans, (Turn 6, Reputation 8) and obliterating the Empire's secret weapon before retreating back home to Tatooine.

As the Empire struggled to recover from the aftermath of the battle station's destruction, they found themselves unable to transport arms or personnel across the galaxy- the Rebels had managed to cut their supply lines (Turn 7, Reputation 7 - Game Over.) And so, with the Empire's infrastructure too paralyzed to respond, the Rebel forces in hidden cells across the galaxy succeeded in launching a massive uprising, toppling the evil Empire and once more raising in its place a new Republic.



Phew, what a game! It honestly wasn't until the last two turns that I had any inkling that I might win. This game was a pretty polar opposite to our last one. In that one, Gary as the Empire mostly aimed at victory through intelligence-gathering, and I as the Rebels was able to compete with him, to some degree, for territory, production, and troops. This time, after a few powerful early missions, he used a (very effective) brute-force strategy, subjugating almost all of my systems and denying me any meaningful production or military power. I sacrificed my early armies for my two early objective wins, and he took full advantage of my lack of forces to hamstring me for the rest of the game.

However, I was extremely lucky in my Recruitment draws, scoring Luke (with SoS) on Turn 2, and Han, who instantly hired Chewie, on Turn 3. Luke also became a Jedi on Turn 3, which meant that I had access to three of the Rebellion's best heroes for the latter half of the game. I'd also say that Gary was lucky in his early recruitment, drawing Boba Fett and Yularen as his first two extra leaders, but I would say that their strengths didn't quite match his overall military-domination strategy. Still, he mostly used them to counter my missions - often effectively.

Still, I was incredibly lucky that my base location, Tatooine, was quite literally the last system that he searched. He had his Death Star parked adjacent to it for almost the entire latter half of the game, and he likely didn't realize that my Death Star Plans objective was hiding at the very bottom of the Phase II objectives. Even in the last turn, if he had taken more of a gamble and attempted to search Tatooine with either of his adjacent armies, I likely would not have survived. His decision to wait one more turn and attack with overwhelming force was what did him in. I should note that, by the time we finished up, it was getting quite late in the UK, and he was a real trooper for staying on as long as he did.

It's also funny- it wasn't a short game time-wise, but it lasted only six turns. Though I should mention that that's only half of Gary's and my record for shortest game, which clocked in at 3 turns (due to a very lucky Imperial hunch)!

Really fantastic game which I'm not entirely convinced I deserved to win . Thanks for the great time, Gary, and look forward to playing with you again soon!
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Thomas with Subtrendy
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Wow, sounds like a pretty close game. The Rebel player was pretty aggressive, but it seems it worked out for them!
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Ken Chadwick
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Yonkers
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Sounds like it was a good game! And your session report was fun to read, too!
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Subudai (Pete) Khan
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Great game report. Sounds like you had fun.
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Three Headed Monkey
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Great report! It sounds like a very close game with an amazingly cinematic ending.
 
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David Umstattd
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Austin
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This is what in HearthStone we call "going face."

Rebels spent all their early forces scoring some early objectives. A gutsy strategy but it worked out for you. Though you obviously felt the results of losing your military strength early. Fun read.
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