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Subject: Retreating with Fighters rss

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Daniel Geschwender
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Can fighters retreat without capacity? I would have thought not, but the situation came up in our game this weekend and we couldn't find anything in the rules against it. Retreats happen as part of the space combat step and capacity is not enforced until after space combat.
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Miguel Batista
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geschd23 wrote:
Can fighters retreat without capacity? I would have thought not, but the situation came up in our game this weekend and we couldn't find anything in the rules against it. Retreats happen as part of the space combat step and capacity is not enforced until after space combat.


They have zero movement so no. They cannot move to the retreating system.
 
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Daniel Geschwender
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In the retreat rules (67.7 of rules reference) it says:
Quote:
To retreat, a player takes all of his ships in the combat and
move them to an adjacent system.


I think that 49.8 of the rules reference applies here:
Quote:
If an ability moves a unit outside of the “Movement” step of a
tactical action, players follow the rules specified by that ability;
neither a unit’s move value nor the rules specified above apply.
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Jorgen Peddersen
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The rules don't agree with Miguel... Here's some interesting rules quotes:

Firstly, regarding Movement:
Quote:
49.8 ABILITY MOVEMENT
49.9 If an ability moves a unit outside of the “Movement” step of a
tactical action, players follow the rules specified by that ability;
neither a unit’s move value nor the rules specified above apply.

The 'rules specified above' include transport.

Also:
Quote:
67.7 STEP 5—RETREAT: If a player announced a retreat during the
first step of a combat, he must retreat.
• To retreat, a player takes all of his ships in the combat and
move them to an adjacent system.


This is outside the Movement step, so the Move values do not apply. Thus, the rules actually indicate that you take all Fighters with you, even if you don't have capacity.

I guess it can be assumed that the Ground Forces assigned to ships also come along (you wouldn't just jettison them into space while retreating).

And you need to reconcile the capacity situation in your new system, of course, so if there were no ships with capacity where you moved to, the Fighters will be destroyed anyway.

Edit: Dang, ninja'd again. Time to retreat...
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Miguel Batista
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I will continue not allowing it in my games. Makes no sense. and it seems like an oversight.
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Dangerous Partners
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All depends if you consider the Retreat phase of a Combat round to be an ability - I don't.
This isn't even covered in TI3, I think the 'Move' term in the Retreat process was probably clear enough for players.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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BeerAndBoard wrote:
All depends if you consider the Retreat phase of a Combat round to be an ability - I don't.

Then there are no rules at all for how to retreat apart from following the text in retreat, which definitely says 'all ships'.
 
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Scott Lewis
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I suspect, though, that this will probably be clarified and/or errata'd.
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Jorgen Peddersen
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I have some more evidence that you should retreat all Fighters.

Take a look at the action card Skilled Retreat:

"At the start of a combat round:
Move all of your ships from the active system into an adjacent system that does not contain another player's ships; the space combat ends in a draw. Then, place a command token from your reinforcements in that system."

This card uses the same wording as normal retreating. If normal retreating makes you leave Fighters that you cannot transport behind, then so would this card and thus you will leave Fighters in the system and the combat then immediately ends as a draw.

However, you would end up with ships of both sides in the active system without combat occurring!

Thus, we can be fairly certain that Skilled Retreat is meant to retreat all the Fighters, even if there is not enough capacity. Normal retreats use the same wording and thus should work exactly the same way.
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Dangerous Partners
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Clipper wrote:
I have some more evidence that you should retreat all Fighters.

Take a look at the action card Skilled Retreat:

"At the start of a combat round:
Move all of your ships from the active system into an adjacent system that does not contain another player's ships; the space combat ends in a draw. Then, place a command token from your reinforcements in that system."

This card uses the same wording as normal retreating. If normal retreating makes you leave Fighters that you cannot transport behind, then so would this card and thus you will leave Fighters in the system and the combat then immediately ends as a draw.

However, you would end up with ships of both sides in the active system without combat occurring!

Thus, we can be fairly certain that Skilled Retreat is meant to retreat all the Fighters, even if there is not enough capacity. Normal retreats use the same wording and thus should work exactly the same way.


MOVE should follow normal movement rules so I disagree with your "fairly certain" appraisal. But I'm sure the first FAQ, or email to the designer, will soon tell us their actual intent.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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BeerAndBoard wrote:
MOVE should follow normal movement rules so I disagree with your "fairly certain" appraisal. But I'm sure the first FAQ, or email to the designer, will soon tell us their actual intent.

So are you going to argue that you think Skilled Retreat will leave your Fighters that you don't have Capacity for behind and thus, provided you also have a Space Dock, they will peacefully co-exist with the other ships until someone activates the system again?
 
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Riku Koskinen
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Clipper wrote:
BeerAndBoard wrote:
MOVE should follow normal movement rules so I disagree with your "fairly certain" appraisal. But I'm sure the first FAQ, or email to the designer, will soon tell us their actual intent.

So are you going to argue that you think Skilled Retreat will leave your Fighters that you don't have Capacity for behind and thus, provided you also have a Space Dock, they will peacefully co-exist with the other ships until someone activates the system again?


That is a very good point. It would be weird if the space combat would continue with the space dock -supported fighters and enemy ships, when rest of the fleet (that have no capacity among them) retreats. It would be weird also to automatically destroy the leftover fighters if there is a space dock giving them capacity. And I'd say it's completely impossible for the fighters to coexist with another player's ships in the same system.

It still feels wrong for fighters to be able to cross the border to a neighboring system without help of capacity ships or their own upgrade tech. It would be great to get an official ruling here.
 
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Simon Kamber
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Padish wrote:
It still feels wrong for fighters to be able to cross the border to a neighboring system without help of capacity ships or their own upgrade tech. It would be great to get an official ruling here.


Thematically, it is quite in line with the rest of the rules for fighters to be able to exist without support for a short while. They do that during combat as well.


And now we're at it: What happens to unsupported GF when the fleet retreats? By the TI4 rules, GF are not assigned to a specific ship (as far as I understand), so conceivably you could have unsupported GF when the retreat is resolved (and, possibly, available support in the system the fleet retreats to).
 
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Riku Koskinen
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Dulkal wrote:
Padish wrote:
It still feels wrong for fighters to be able to cross the border to a neighboring system without help of capacity ships or their own upgrade tech. It would be great to get an official ruling here.


Thematically, it is quite in line with the rest of the rules for fighters to be able to exist without support for a short while. They do that during combat as well.


And now we're at it: What happens to unsupported GF when the fleet retreats? By the TI4 rules, GF are not assigned to a specific ship (as far as I understand), so conceivably you could have unsupported GF when the retreat is resolved (and, possibly, available support in the system the fleet retreats to).


I assume space combats happen in a relatively small area (or volume?), and the combat won't likely last very long - from a few minutes to few hours, depending on the fleet sizes. When moving from system to system, the ships certainly cover a much much longer distance on their own than they travel during a battle, and that also takes a lot more time as well. Regular fighters without the advanced upgrade would have to at least refuel/resupply at a carrier at certain intervals, or be onboard the carrier for the entire duration of the trip.

The question about GF is also good one, because the rules don't specify exactly what happens if enemy manages to kill their transport(s) during the round of combat. It must be pretty obvious that they won't fly with jetpacks to another system. I'd be surprised if the ruling was anything else than to destroy all GF for which you don't have capacity, at the time of retreat. They won't go back to a planet either, because it's stated in the rules that when announcing a retreat, you must move any GF you want to take with you to the space area at the time of announcement.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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The rules are there that Ground Forces in space will be destroyed if there is no capacity for them. They are assigned to ships during transport to allow them to move with the ships carrying them.

I already mentioned this earlier, but it makes sense that you would consider your ships to be able to transport ground forces that are in space when you retreat. You wouldn't just be jettisoning them into space to die after all.

And yes, I would agree that only the ground forces you have capacity for can be moved with you. The Retreat effect does not say to move all the ground forces, only all the ships.
 
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Dangerous Partners
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Clipper wrote:
BeerAndBoard wrote:
MOVE should follow normal movement rules so I disagree with your "fairly certain" appraisal. But I'm sure the first FAQ, or email to the designer, will soon tell us their actual intent.

So are you going to argue that you think Skilled Retreat will leave your Fighters that you don't have Capacity for behind and thus, provided you also have a Space Dock, they will peacefully co-exist with the other ships until someone activates the system again?


No, I'm not going to argue as I have better things to do with my life, I just said I disagree with you and will happily accept whatever the designers say their intent was in future correspondence or FAQs.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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BeerAndBoard wrote:
No, I'm not going to argue as I have better things to do with my life, I just said I disagree with you and will happily accept whatever the designers say their intent was in future correspondence or FAQs.

But disagreeing with me means you would allow the Fighters to co-exist with the other units.

You are arguing that the fighters are left behind and Skilled Retreat says "the space combat ends in a draw". There's no other way I can see that makes this situation work out.
 
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Scott Lewis
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Clipper wrote:
BeerAndBoard wrote:
No, I'm not going to argue as I have better things to do with my life, I just said I disagree with you and will happily accept whatever the designers say their intent was in future correspondence or FAQs.

But disagreeing with me means you would allow the Fighters to co-exist with the other units.

You are arguing that the fighters are left behind and Skilled Retreat says "the space combat ends in a draw". There's no other way I can see that makes this situation work out.

If its ruled you can't move un-transported fighters with Skilled Retreat, that would actually mean you can't play it at all. The rules state if you can't fully resolve such an ability, you can't use it at all.
 
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Dustin Shunta
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The rules in this tiny niche area are a mess from a technical stand point. I will be extremely surprised if the ultimate ruling is what you propose Jorgen.

To be clear, I don't disagree with your technical analysis. I just think it's not a practical analysis and would be extremely surprised if this was the intended way for the rules to work.

The intention of the rules in my view is clearly that fighters and ground forces always need to be carried by ships with capacity in all situations.

If you retreat (or use skilled retreat), I suspect any excess fighters/infantry over your capacity will simply be destroyed.

That is, if you have 3 fighters and a space dock, someone attacks you with 3 cruisers, and you play skilled retreat. I would be extremely surprised if you are going to be allowed to move those 3 fighters to an adjacent system. Admittedly, by the technical letter of the rules I can understand your point of view. I just think there is no way that was the invention.

Think about what that would mean. You think fighters during a tactical action to an adjacent system have to have capacity to be moved (or have advanced fighters), but in this special case of retreating you think its different and that they can move to an adjacent system without capacity. While it's possible, I think it's extremely unlikely that was the intention.

By the way, I also think it would be silly if Skilled retreat was not allowed to be played simply because you had fighters present in a system that can't be moved. If you have a space dock, 3 fighters, and 3 cruisers, and are attacked by 2 dreadnoughts and 3 cruisers, then you play skilled retreat, it seems crazy to suggest you wouldn't be allowed to play skilled retreat simply because you don't have capacity for the fighters. Again, from a technical perspective I see your point of view, but it seems ludicrous from a practical viewpoint. And time and time again, the rulings from the designers/developers for TI4 have come down on the side of practicality.
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Jorgen Peddersen
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I'm just interpreting the rules as written. Errata will be required to avoid the issue with Skilled Retreat if the intention is for the Fighters to require transport or be destroyed, as they would not be destroyed under normal circumstances.

And I can't reconcile how Skilled Retreat would force you to destroy the Fighters you don't take when a Retreat would leave them in the system until the battle concludes. That 'end combat in a draw' instruction makes it very hard to figure out what happens if you don't simply follow the instruction to move all ships.

Edit: And if you're destroying them in both situations, the thematics are very odd. You just decide to self-destruct the ships that can't follow you? The ones that could potentially stick around and destroy a few more enemies before valiantly dying for the cause? Nope, don't give them the glory of dying in battle. Just force them to self-destruct instead.
 
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Clipper wrote:

Edit: And if you're destroying them in both situations, the thematics are very odd. You just decide to self-destruct the ships that can't follow you? The ones that could potentially stick around and destroy a few more enemies before valiantly dying for the cause? Nope, don't give them the glory of dying in battle. Just force them to self-destruct instead.


I don't have any dogs in this fight, but your argument here can be explained by those fighters running screening maneuvers to keep the enemy from following as the rest of your fleet retreats, dying valiantly to allow the others to escape. They don't self-destruct, they just help keep the enemy at bay. Just a thought.
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Norarat Pitisant
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I'm inclined to think that retreating follows the normal rules for movement, but skilled retreat is an ability so this would apply
49.8 ABILITY MOVEMENT
49.9 If an ability moves a unit outside of the “Movement” step of a
tactical action, players follow the rules specified by that ability;
neither a unit’s move value nor the rules specified above apply

Any thoughts?
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Jonathan Barth
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Has there been any update from FFG on this? We are planning on playing our first game thing weekend and I think we are going to play it as the rules state with a fleet capacity check immediately after all ships arrive in the new retreating system.

Also, I have a question about retreating and leaving ground forces behind. Are the ground forces that have been left behind able to complete a combat round?

For Example, I retreat, but leave 3 ground forces on the planet does the bombardment step and subsequent invasion step take place? Or are the ground forces lost once the retreat happens?

Thanks for all the help!

J

 
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Riku Koskinen
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jbarth09 wrote:
Has there been any update from FFG on this? We are planning on playing our first game thing weekend and I think we are going to play it as the rules state with a fleet capacity check immediately after all ships arrive in the new retreating system.

Also, I have a question about retreating and leaving ground forces behind. Are the ground forces that have been left behind able to complete a combat round?

For Example, I retreat, but leave 3 ground forces on the planet does the bombardment step and subsequent invasion step take place? Or are the ground forces lost once the retreat happens?

Thanks for all the help!

J



Invasion combat is not dependent on whether there was a retreat or not. When you announce retreats, you may move any amount of infantry you might want to retreat (and for which you have capacity) from planet(s) to the space area. If your capacity ship(s) survive, the selected infantry will move to the neighboring system with the fleet.

(This I'm not sure about (couldn't find anything from rules), but thematically this would make sense: If you don't have enough capacity, you must destroy excess fighters/space-area infantry before retreating.)

After this, if there are any infantry left on planet(s), the combat victor can follow up with bombardment and/or planetary landing, resulting in invasion combat if bombardment did not clear the planet. So the infantry on the planets that weren't selected for retreat, won't automatically get destroyed.
 
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Michael Barclay
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I am beginning to get quite frustrated by the rules when we dive into the finer details.

As with a number of things I've bumped into - The rules as written do not state the interpretation most players have.

The rules are pretty clear that capacity is checked at the end of combat. This is said multiple times in the rules reference. Based on that logic then surely you could just move fighters during a retreat and then do the capacity check once all is said and done.

Yes - maybe that is silly. Yes - it potentially leads of obviously silly exploits like transporting all of your ground forces during a retreat even if you have zero capacity.

But the rules as written let you do this.

Simply saying an errata or FAQ will sort this out isn't a great solution. This is not an isolated case.
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