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Subject: Roaming Factions Expansion Idea rss

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J C

Pocatello
Idaho
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ROAMING FACTIONS FAN EXPANSION

3 Factions without a home base: using special retreat and recover rules.

(Log Play Tests and comments in this Google Spreadsheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1IZEmVbctlyZxL2tVhwSm...)


V F (Twilight_Sonata)’s recent threads about new factions really got me thinking too. I appreciate concerns raised by Jamey and V F about the potential complexities associated with the idea of factions that do not have a home base. But I really wanted to try the idea because I felt like it opened up an interesting theme about groups that might not have a homeland, might have been displaced from one, or are just generally prone to wander. With this theme in mind I have the ideas for three factions. First, a Siberian Fur Trapper/Trader faction. Second, a lake based faction themed around the indigenous Sami People. Third, a Saharan Caravan Faction. The latter two are only in the earliest idea stages, so there are only teasers for these. I will update as I have more details on these factions. I have included all of the information to play the Siberian Fur Trapper/trader faction below.

To make this happen I created what I think in most cases will be a pretty intuitive retreat and recover mechanism that simulates retreating to a home base and the need to take a move to get back into action after retreat. The precise mechanism for each faction may differ slightly, but in all cases they will follow the general notion of a retreat followed by a need to “recover” in order to bring units back into action.

Before diving into the rules for playing the Siberian faction, there are a couple things I want to acknowledge ahead of time that people might comment on. First, this is my first attempt at this so there are likely balance issues that will arise and I would totally welcome suggestions for improving it. I also recognize that a few of the proposed starting areas impact the riverwalk exits for Saxony and Rusviet if those factions are in the game. I am tentatively not too concerned by this as both factions have the ability to exit their home areas in other ways—through Underpass or Township. I also recognize the prevalence of other factions in the main area may weaken further any advantages Togawa and Albion had from starting without rivers. I haven’t yet come up with suggested alternate powers or enhancements for these factions, but this is something I hope to work on to ensure they don’t suffer as a result of the introduction of these new factions. With respect to player count, I will be interested to see results as I test things. But in any case these are not intended to increase player count to 10… That would ruin the game I’m quit sure… My guess is that it will turn out that these factions are less fun even at 6 or 7. But I’ll leave a final judgment on that until after some playtesting. Lastly, while I have set it up so that the starting hexes of these factions do not overlap so they can be played at the same time. I anticipate, however, that they will be most fun if one is used at a time or perhaps 2. I could also see a variant of only expansion factions (Invaders from Afar + Roaming Factions) might be interesting—a kind of search for a homeland inside moving out type game could be fun.

I will be logging the results of my play testing here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1IZEmVbctlyZxL2tVhwSm...)[/size][/center]. Anyone can contribute to the spreadsheet or just check out the data. The cells are editable, so try to make sure you aren’t overwriting someone else’s entry when you put in the info.

So with that, here are the rules for Roaming Factions

General Rules:
There are two important ways in which roaming factions are different from traditional factions:

1) Roaming factions do not have a traditional home base. They retreat in unique ways according to special rules for each faction.

2) Roaming factions may not obtain a factory card because their lack of a home base positions them much closer to the factory. [If this turns out to be too much of a detriment in playtesting it could be changed to simply rule not allowing these factions to obtain a factory card until at least one other player has one.]

[If the starting position still turns out to be too strong, it might be necessary to limit these factions to 3 mechs with one deployment unlocking only a new ability but not a new mech or there could be 4 mechs but only 3 with abilities.]

Siberian Fur Trappers and Traders

Character: Siberian Fur Trader- dressed in pelts with an oversized beaver by his side.

STARTING HEXES:

Village Tunnel: 1 worker
Metal Adjacent to Factory: 1 Worker & Character

FACTION ABILITY:

Starting Power 3, Combat Cards 2
• Units retreat together to the closest unoccupied hex (including lakes).
• Workers may move to and occupy any hex not occupied by an enemy combat unit.

Detailed rules:

Retreat- All units retreating from a single hex must retreat to the same hex (unless scatter is unlocked, see mech abilities). If multiple hexes are equidistant from the combat hex, you may choose which hex to retreat to. If no adjacent hex is unoccupied, identify the next closest set of hexes and select from those. Lakes are valid hexes for purposes of retreat, but your mechs and character may not otherwise move into lake hexes (unless you have portage, see mech abilities). In the rare case that all hexes including lakes are occupied by enemy units, retreat to the closest territory you control. If there is no such territory, retreat to the nearest territory not occupied by a combat unit (a territory with only enemy workers on it).

Recover: All retreated units are tipped on their side and must recover. Recovering units are like units on a home base. They cannot produce goods and they do not count as occupying a territory for scoring purposes. Enemy factions may pass through or occupy a territory where there are no active units as if it were not occupied. If an enemy combat unit stops its movement on a territory with no active units, the recovering units retreat again (see above rules for retreat)--there is no loss of popularity for causing recovering units to retreat. If workers stop their movement on a hex with no active units, no further retreat is required. To recover a unit, take a move action. Each movement may recover one unit. The factory double move action may also recover a unit. But because it only allows one move, only one unit may be recovered. When recovering a mech, that mech may recover all workers on its hex (akin to a mech carrying workers from the home base to a hex adjacent to home base). You may recover your workers on a territory occupied by enemy workers without any adverse effect, see Trappers faction ability below for rules regarding your worker’s ability to occupy a territory with enemy workers. But if you recover a combat unit on a territory with enemy workers, you will suffer the accompanying loss of popularity associated with causing workers to retreat to their home base.

Trappers: Your workers may move into any territory not occupied by an enemy combat unit including lakes. But trappers may not not cross rivers. When your workers occupy a hex together with enemy workers, the enemy player retains control of the territory and exclusive possession of any resources produced there. In other words, all normal rules apply as usual unless stated otherwise here. If your workers bring resources into a hex occupied by enemy workers you lose control of those resources. Your workers may not produce on a hex occupied with enemy workers. Enemy combat units who enter the hex cause your workers to retreat, following the retreat rules above—but this causes the enemy faction to lose popularity (per the usual rules). Scatter (see mech abilities) does not apply to retreat by workers, it only applies to workers retreating from a defeat in combat. All workers must retreat together to the same hex. When your workers move from a hex occupied by enemy workers you may take one resource per worker with you from the enemy controlled hex.Other players’ workers may not enter a hex occupied by your workers. But they may enter a mixed hex with their own workers and your workers.

MECH ABILITIES

Scatter: after defeat in combat each unit (mech, workers, and character) may retreat to a different hex. Scatter does not alter which hexes are available for retreat. It only alters the usual requirement that workers and combat units retreat to the same space. Accordingly, if there is only one hex closest to the combat all units must retreat here. But if there are multiple equidistant hexes, you may choose which of these hexes each unit will retreat to.

Ambush: workers accompanying a combat unit add 1 combat power to any combat (max +3). This power is not reflected in the power track or dial. Accordingly, a mech with 2 workers and at least 7 on the power track would have a minimum of 3 power in combat, and a maximum of 10 in addition to power added from combat cards. You do not receive a combat card for defeat unless you have spent power from your dial or combat card.

Portage: cross lakes as if they were rivers. You may travel from any hex adjacent to a lake to any other hex adjacent to that lake. Your units are in essence passing over the lake without counting it towards the maximum number of spaces that unit can move (1 space). Thus, you may not finish your move on the lake. If an enemy combat unit occupies the lake, you may not portage that lake—i.e. you must move as normal around the lake.

Trader: when producing you may choose one of your mechs or your character to produce one resource as if it were a worker. This does not apply to village hexes, i.e. you may not produce a worker using this mech ability.

Indigenous Sami People Faction


Character dressed in a traditional gákti riding an oversized reindeer with large antlers.

STARTING HEXES:

Lake Adjacent to Polania Home Base: Character
Lake Between Nordic & Albion: 1 Worker
Lake Lake between Nordic & Rusviet: 1 Worker

FACTION ABILITY:

Starting Power 1, Combat Cards 3

Navigation: All units may occupy lake hexes and units may travel between lake hexes as if they were adjacent. Your units may only exit a lake hex onto or enter a lake hex from a tunnel or the factory (Migration allows an exception for mechs and your character).

Subsistence: When using the produce action, you may choose to activate lake hexes that have at least one worker on them. Lakes produce 1 unit of food and 1 unit of oil. Having more than one worker on the lake hex does not increase output.

Retreat: Units retreat off the board to the Sami home base hex placed outside the board near where the player is sitting. Units may move from the home base to any lake hex.

MECH ABILITIES

Herding: When taking the move action, pay 1 oil to activate speed for all movements by combat units this turn.

Migration: Once per turn you may pay 1 food to allow one combat unit to enter a lake from any hex or exit a lake hex onto any hex.

Duodji (Craft): After movement produce 1 resource on the hex where your mech finished its movement (limit once per turn).

Homeland
: + 1 combat card when you are defending a mountain hex, opponent gets – 2 power when you are defending on a lake hex.

Saharan Caravan Faction


Character is a caravan leader riding a camel.

STARTING HEXES:

Forest Encounter Between Polania and Saxony: 1 worker
Next Adjacent Forest Hex between Polania and Saxony: Character
Farm Tunnel Hex: 1 worker

FACTION ABILITY:

Starting Power 4, Combat Cards 0

Caravan: Your units may carry structures, and connected hexes occupied by your units operate as a single hex for movement of workers.

Retreat to the Caravan: Defeated units retreat to the nearest hex occupied by active units of your faction to recover.

Detailed rules:
Caravan: Each structure must be carried by a unit. Accordingly, one unit may not carry multiple structures. You may have multiple structures in a single hex. So you are allowed to build a structure in a hex where you already have one. But you may not carry structures into combat or into territories where other players have already built a structure.

When moving workers, all connected hexes occupied by your units operate as if they were the same hex. This allows free movement for workers through these hexes. But the normal rules regarding number of units that may move still apply.

Retreat & Recover: Retreat defeated units to the nearest hex occupied by your faction. Hexes occupied only by your structures count as eligible hexes for retreat. If there are no other hexes on the board containing your units, retreat all units to the Saharan Home Base Hex placed next to the wood hex between Saxony and Polania. No recovery is required for units that retreat to the home base hex. These units may simply re-enter the board onto the adjacent wood hex. Structures do not retreat, but remain on the board where combat defeat occurred.

Defeated units are tipped on their side and must recover. Movement of one of your active mechs into or from a hex with recovering workers will recover all workers on that hex. Likewise recovering a mech on a hex recovers all workers with that mech. Otherwise each unit recovers individually when you use one of your movements to recover the unit. You may not leave recovering Saharan units alone on a hex. Before moving the last active unit you must recover at least one other unit to remain active on the hex.

MECH ABILITIES:

Barter: When trading you may obtain 3 different goods instead of the usual 2 of your choice.

Mining: workers on a hex with a Saharan Mech may produce .5 units of gold each (rounded up) instead of producing the resource identified by the hex. Gold is a wild resource, it may be exchanged for any resource of your choice when paying costs.

Outpost: Before combat opponent gets minus -1 power for each of your structures on the hex.

Ferry: Pay one wood to cross any river, once per turn.

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That's it, if you made it all the way through that’s awesome! (I know it was super long…). I would love your thoughts and ideas and your help in logging any play tests of the Siberian faction.

John C.
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J C

Pocatello
Idaho
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Updated with Rules for the Sami people faction.
 
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J C

Pocatello
Idaho
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Updated with full rules for playing Saharan Caravan Faction.
 
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Magnetic Llama
United States
Minnesota
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I might try this out with a group soon.
 
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J C

Pocatello
Idaho
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I’ll be anxious to hear how it goes! I moved not long after posting these and haven’t gotten a good Scythe group in my new town yet.
 
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Ahmad Siddiqi
Pakistan
Lahore
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Nice idea! When Jamey was first polling for ideas on expansion factions before Invaders from Afar, the first ideas that came to my mind were Yiddish and Gypsy/Roma factions, as nomadic factions that are closely connected to Eastern Europe.
 
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