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Twilight Imperium (Third Edition)» Forums » Variants

Subject: Dreadnought as PDS rss

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Philippe Castonguay
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I know that people play with Dreadnoughts having two shots instead of one, making them more cost effective. I feel this turns them into mini War Suns, and trivializes the decision to build two of one or one of the other.

I thought it might be interesting if Dreadnoughts could function as PDS. They could inherit the same skills from the tech tree (which parallels the dreadnought nicely) and would give them a unique role.

Obviously they wouldn't provide a shield against planetary bombardment but other than that they would work the same way. They could be teched to fire into adjacent systems, re-rolls, increase damage. They may even provide a combat bonus to ground forces if they share a system.

Given that PDS fire once during a space battle, they wouldn't be able to turn the tide of a massive battle like a War Sun could, but they could keep a small fleet at bay, or facilitate an invasion by getting some opening shots as they move into the system.

It's just an idea, but I would like to hear what you guys think.
 
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Scott Lewis
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PDS grids can already be pretty deadly, even with the restriction of having only 2 per planet. If you give essentially 5 more (mobile) PDS, that would just encourage even more turtling, I think.
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Scott Randolph
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We've been playing with 2xd10 DN's for so long now (7 years, 50+ games) it would feel completely abnormal to play any other way. Just for clarification though, our DN's only roll 1xd10 for Assault Cannon, and 1xd10 for Bombardment. 2xd10 DN's are not mini WS's, and WS's are still researched and purchased plenty of times in our games. Why?...WS's can bombard with 3 dice through PDS, WS's have a base speed of 2, WS's have a carrying/support capacity of 6...a 2xd10 (space battle only) DN does not come anywhere close to this.

The 2xd10 dice DN in space battle only game improvement simply makes logical sense (Cruiser 1xd10 at 7, DN 2xd10 at 5, WS 3xd10 at 3), and makes the DN worth its cost, improving them is still very expensive (they are slow), high opportunity cost (cost to research improving DN's vs benefits from researching other, more useful technologies). 2xd10 DN's are not in any way "O/P'd" - shrewd players with a CV + ftrs + 2 CA's (cost around 10 resources) blow up / annihilate 3 2xd10 DN's (cost 15 resources) ALL THE TIME...just happened last game.

The one-shot DN was a game design flaw, an oversight, an error, from the beginning. That's OK, TI3 is still the best multi-player strategy game I've ever played.
 
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Necessary Evil
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Glen Arm
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I don't house rule them and they still get played simply because you need the extra ships or firepower. Are they as cost efficient as others, no but i fine that there are times when the extra piece of plastic matters.

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David Damerell
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malloc wrote:
I don't house rule them and they still get played simply because you need the extra ships or firepower. Are they as cost efficient as others, no but i fine that there are times when the extra piece of plastic matters.


I agree, never felt the need for a house rule. They're not as cost efficient, but they do (if you don't have warsuns) make the most effective use of one production slot, and the second most effective use of one Fleet Supply slot (a full carrier does still better, but obviously needs vastly more production slots). They're a specialised unit to be built in specialised circumstances.
 
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Philippe Castonguay
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Thanks for the input, I'm in the middle of a game now and have a few Dreads with no house rules. I'm in the position where I'm behind on fleet, the space dock has a small build capacity, and being Jol-Nar all my ships with bad hits are that much worse, so Dreads are the best I can do... (enemies keep passing on the Tech card)

I agree that the change may lead to more turtling, which probably isn't a good thing. (We are looking at potentially ending the game without having any space combat as it is). It just occurred to me that it may be an interesting change.

I think we will keep DNs running standard (we are playing the base set so I am not sure if that makes a difference). I never enjoyed games where bigger is better (obviously the WS follows this path, but it's a substantial investment) and I think the DNs do fill a niche right now, even if it's a much smaller one with the single roll.
 
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Starkiller
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I have always compared them by comparing the numbers for 5 CL, 2 DN, 1 WS.

CL=move-2; roll-5x7; hits before destroyed-5; fleet supply& build slot-5
DN=move-1; roll-2x5; hits before destroyed-4; fleet supply& build slot-2
WS=move-2; roll-3x3; hits before destroyed-2; fleet supply& build slot-1

It should be noted that they have special abilities (mines, bombardment, and capacity) the WS also costs 2 more, and requires a tech. It's the best, but it should be after those costs.
Plus, Hylar V suddenly makes cruisers hitting almost as high as DN. And CL can carry over twice as many GF with stasis capsules.
In addition, 1 movement is a huge disadvantage for the DN. gulp Especially with Hylar V, the only reason you wouldn't want cruisers RAW is if you didn't have enough cc's or build capacity.

Granted, DN would still be built, but only when you can't build CL/WS.

I don't like this. I want them to be something you weigh the pros and cons.whistle

With 2 shot DN, the table looks like this:
CL=move-2; roll-5x7; hits before destroyed-5; fleet supply& build slot-5
DN=move-1; roll-4x5; hits before destroyed-4; fleet supply& build slot-2
WS=move-2; roll-3x3; hits before destroyed-2; fleet supply& build slot-1

Now, all of a sudden, DN look inviting, even if you have Hylar V. Do I need the two movements? Can I save a Tech research and just use DN? Or I can spam a huge fleet of CL?


I much prefer having DN a viable choice, as opposed to something you buy when you can't get the better stuff.
Dreadnoughts are supposed to be AWESOME, not meh.cool
 
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Tommy Roman
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My group has adopted the house rule whereby the DN plays with 2xD10, keeps its base movement speed of 1, loses one combat die when damaged AND requires two production slots for building during the tactical action.

The DN does offer other potential advantages in RAW form, but this house rule (which we experimented with, went back to base rules and then returned to) brings thematic weight to this capital ship without making it over-powered.
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Matthew Galton
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I've always found it odd the loss of an attack dice due to damage. Thematically it makes sense but at this point taking a hit on the dreadnought is equivalent to killing off an entire ship.

Basically turns cruisers into meatshields for what I've always viewed as being the tanks in the fleet.
 
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Scott Lewis
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galton wrote:
I've always found it odd the loss of an attack dice due to damage. Thematically it makes sense but at this point taking a hit on the dreadnought is equivalent to killing off an entire ship.

While I don't use the 2-dice rule myself anymore (though I used to), it's not quite the same. While similar, the difference is that when it repairs, you get the second shot back for free, so you aren't having to buy an entire ship to do so.
 
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Scott Randolph
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akinfantryman wrote:
I have always compared them by comparing the numbers for 5 CL, 2 DN, 1 WS.

CL=move-2; roll-5x7; hits before destroyed-5; fleet supply& build slot-5
DN=move-1; roll-2x5; hits before destroyed-4; fleet supply& build slot-2
WS=move-2; roll-3x3; hits before destroyed-2; fleet supply& build slot-1

It should be noted that they have special abilities (mines, bombardment, and capacity) the WS also costs 2 more, and requires a tech. It's the best, but it should be after those costs.
Plus, Hylar V suddenly makes cruisers hitting almost as high as DN. And CL can carry over twice as many GF with stasis capsules.
In addition, 1 movement is a huge disadvantage for the DN. gulp Especially with Hylar V, the only reason you wouldn't want cruisers RAW is if you didn't have enough cc's or build capacity.

Granted, DN would still be built, but only when you can't build CL/WS.

I don't like this. I want them to be something you weigh the pros and cons.whistle

With 2 shot DN, the table looks like this:
CL=move-2; roll-5x7; hits before destroyed-5; fleet supply& build slot-5
DN=move-1; roll-4x5; hits before destroyed-4; fleet supply& build slot-2
WS=move-2; roll-3x3; hits before destroyed-2; fleet supply& build slot-1

Now, all of a sudden, DN look inviting, even if you have Hylar V. Do I need the two movements? Can I save a Tech research and just use DN? Or I can spam a huge fleet of CL?


I much prefer having DN a viable choice, as opposed to something you buy when you can't get the better stuff.
Dreadnoughts are supposed to be AWESOME, not meh.cool


We've experimented over the course of 65+ games of TI3 with just about every DN revision, including lose 1 combat die when taking 1 hit with the 2xd10 DN's (again, space battle only).

Every time we have returned to the 2xd10 DN's (space battle only) with no reduction in combat dice for taking a hit...keep in mind, hitting on 5 still means that there's a 40% chance that one will miss...as in our recent example, game we just played, 2 CA's + CV with ftrs utterly destroyed 3 2xd10 DN's; 9 resource cost vs 15 resource cost, and the "9" resource cost fleet won handily, this is not exceptional, but quite common.

In our games with 1-shot DN's, players only buy one, to go with their Admiral, and then players do not buy any more...they are slow, and expensive, and not "Combat-Cost-Effective" compared to the flexibility that CA's, CV's, even DD's provide.
 
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Lance Harrop
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SFRR wrote:
Every time we have returned to the 2xd10 DN's (space battle only) with no reduction in combat dice for taking a hit...keep in mind, hitting on 5 still means that there's a 50/50 chance that one will miss...as in our recent example, game we just played, 2 CA's + CV with ftrs utterly destroyed 3 2xd10 DN's; 9 resource cost vs 15 resource cost, and the "9" resource cost fleet won handily, this is not exceptional, but quite common.


Hitting on a 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0 means there is a 40% chance you will miss, not a 50% chance.

You do know the zero represents a ten?
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Scott Randolph
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Leifr wrote:
SFRR wrote:
Every time we have returned to the 2xd10 DN's (space battle only) with no reduction in combat dice for taking a hit...keep in mind, hitting on 5 still means that there's a 50/50 chance that one will miss...as in our recent example, game we just played, 2 CA's + CV with ftrs utterly destroyed 3 2xd10 DN's; 9 resource cost vs 15 resource cost, and the "9" resource cost fleet won handily, this is not exceptional, but quite common.


Hitting on a 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0 means there is a 40% chance you will miss, not a 50% chance.

You do know the zero represents a ten?


I do, of course you are right, I shouldn't ever try to write these posts when I'm in a hurry.

Nevertheless, the 2xd10 DN (space battle only) correction (I refer to this modification as a correction versus a "house rule") simply makes them viable, rather than being that big lump of slow, worthless, expensive, and expensive to upgrade, piece of plastic only purchased when nothing else is available.
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Lance Harrop
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SFRR wrote:
Leifr wrote:
SFRR wrote:
Every time we have returned to the 2xd10 DN's (space battle only) with no reduction in combat dice for taking a hit...keep in mind, hitting on 5 still means that there's a 50/50 chance that one will miss...as in our recent example, game we just played, 2 CA's + CV with ftrs utterly destroyed 3 2xd10 DN's; 9 resource cost vs 15 resource cost, and the "9" resource cost fleet won handily, this is not exceptional, but quite common.


Hitting on a 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0 means there is a 40% chance you will miss, not a 50% chance.

You do know the zero represents a ten?


I do, of course you are right, I shouldn't ever try to write these posts when I'm in a hurry.

Nevertheless, the 2xd10 DN (space battle only) correction (I refer to this modification as a correction versus a "house rule") simply makes them viable, rather than being that big lump of slow, worthless, expensive, and expensive to upgrade, piece of plastic only purchased when nothing else is available.


And on that I won't argue with you.
 
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Macket the Macket
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DNs has it's place in the fleet. In the early stage, when everybody are poor, as a "flagship", as mentioned here, usually carrying the Admiral. Later as fleets and resource wealth grows, as a 1 fleet supply, 2 hits "shield" against PDS fire or to save your WS or actual Flagship from unexpected "Direct hit" action card.

Important note here is that my group plays 14-point Long War option on 4 rings map, with all expansions. This gives us a bit more time, and it is common for some players to have Duranium Armor, Type IV Drive or Assault Cannon techs (or even all 3). We also use Imperial II SC, so there are rounds that nobody sores a VP, and rounds that somebody scores 5-6 (or even up to 8) VP. With our group the game takes about 1-1,5 hours longer than regular 10 point game (we have never played longer than 9h) but gets a lot deeper and strategically complex. And with Imperial II SC you can win the game in one round even being few VP behind every other player.

With this combination nobody ever even thought that DNs need any further boost
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