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Subject: solo variant ideas rss

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After playing through a demo run by Levi at PAX West (big thumbs up to Levi for being so friendly and accommodating) I have two ideas for a solo variant. Neither is polished, just ideas:

Variant 1: Actions determined by deck
Similar to another thread in this forum, there is a deck of cards with a set of actions on them. Starting from the top, the AI takes the action if able. One card might have: 1. Build 2. Conspire 3. Harvest; another might have: 1. Explore 2. Build 3. Conspire The cards will be designed in such a way that there is always an option that can be taken (the fall back may be to have the same #3 action, which is harvest).

Variant 2: Actions determined by flowchart(s)
In this option, there is a flowchart that the player will follow when determining what the AI will do each turn. Additionally, there is a set of special allies that the AI will have access to, whenever the conspire action is taken, 2 tokens are placed on an ally (following some logic). When the ally action is used, a token is removed. This represents flipping the ally, then removing it from the AI until it is charged again. I also think that with this variant there would be no mission cards dealt out to the player (so the Conspire action may need to be modified for solo play to make up for the player missing out on that benefit). Alternately, there could be a set of mission cards specifically for the AI, but they are missions that the player is trying to prevent the AI from completing. This might be "Don't let AI control one sector" or "Don't let AI build a colony in both sectors". These points would be added to the AI score at the end. If missions are kept in, then when the AI takes the conspire action, they also draw one mission card. The AI does not have a limit to the number of mission cards they may keep.
Setup would be similar to this:
1. Player chooses their board, shuffles the rest and picks the top one (or any other random method of their choosing). They then choose if they are playing against the basic side or the advanced side.
2. Setup is performed as normal for a 2 player game, the AI always goes second. When setting out planets, the side placed face up does not matter, the AI will adapt to the same planet type as the player (exception: if the AI cannot adapt due to restriction, choose the planet side that allows them to adapt, or pull from the bag until a side can be adapted to).

Over the course of the game, the player will take their turn, then consult the flow chart on the AI player's turn.

The game ends the same way as the regular game. All end of game scoring remains the same, minus missions.

This is an example of the flowchart that would apply to the base race.

Just a few rough ideas. I love the game, and I look forward to getting this into my regular rotation.
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