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Subject: Do the Saar initially Scavenge their own home system? rss

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Victor Ferreira
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Can't believe I couldn't find this already addressed anywhere, but do the Saar start the game with two trade goods for Scavenging their own two starting planets in their home system? I think they obviously should because they gain control of those planets at the start of the game, but a buddy of mine argues that they don't "gain" control of those at any time during set-up because they already controlled them before they were even selected. I can see that argument sort of, but if that were the case, then I'd expect to see some errata or clarification somewhere. Does anybody know of an official ruling?
 
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Christopher Halbower
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No. The Clan does not gain control of their home planets at game start and thus do not gain any trade goods.

Quote:
Rule 24 CONTROL
Each player begins the game with control of the planets in his home system. During the game, players can gain control of additional planets.
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Victor Ferreira
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halbower wrote:
Quote:
Rule 24 CONTROL
Each player begins the game with control of the planets in his home system. During the game, players can gain control of additional planets.

That doesn't seem to clarify anything, unfortunately. We know that when the game begins they already have control of the home system planets. What I'm asking is about set-up, before the game begins. True, the set-up rules don't explicitly use the terminology of "gaining control", but it seems obvious to me that control is gained, or else you wouldn't control them. How does one gain control without "gaining control"?
 
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Christopher Halbower
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You don’t “gain control”; you “begin” with control. The verb is different. And the second, bolder sentence is clear: you gain control during the game after set up.
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Victor Ferreira
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halbower wrote:
You don’t “gain control”; you “begin” with control.

Yes, like I said, I understand that. What I'm saying is that I begin with control that I gained during set-up, before the beginning.

That the literal verbiage of "gaining" isn't perfectly deconstructed or replicated in the set-up rule text should not be taken as a sufficient counter to the obvious and intuitive answer that of course it's the same.

Quote:
And the second, bolder sentence is clear: you gain control during the game after set up.

No, it says that you gain control of additional planets during the game after set-up. It doesn't all suggest that's the only time control of planets can be gained, certainly not of home system planets.

And even if it did, then we'd still be stuck with the question I already asked: How did I gain control of those planets without gaining control of those planets?

If that's the only rule passage related to the question, then it's insufficient. I'll have to wait on something else.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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You are arguing about a chicken and egg problem. In this case, the chicken is the thing which has come first, and that's perfectly valid. You begin the game with control, as rule 24 says. This is represented by taking the starting planet cards for your race during STEP 5 of the setup instructions, which specifically never says you are gaining them.

So yes, it is possible to have control without ever gaining control.
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Tim Burris
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
halbower wrote:
Quote:
Rule 24 CONTROL
Each player begins the game with control of the planets in his home system. During the game, players can gain control of additional planets.

That doesn't seem to clarify anything, unfortunately. We know that when the game begins they already have control of the home system planets. What I'm asking is about set-up, before the game begins. True, the set-up rules don't explicitly use the terminology of "gaining control", but it seems obvious to me that control is gained, or else you wouldn't control them. How does one gain control without "gaining control"?


Are you saying that they should get trade goods for planets that they "gained control" of at some time prior to the beginning of the game (perhaps centuries)? Lol, no. Abilities don't function until the game begins. Halbower is correct. Only instances where the rules specifically use the words "gain control" trigger the ability.

Quote:
No, it says that you gain control of additional planets during the game after set-up. It doesn't all suggest that's the only time control of planets can be gained, certainly not of home system planets


The only time control of planets can be gained is when the specific words "gain control" are used, yes. Wording matters.
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Jorgen Peddersen
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Here is another rule to help satisfy the debate:

RRG - Control wrote:
24.1 When a player gains control of a planet, he takes the planet
card that corresponds to that planet and places it in his play
area; that card is exhausted.


When you take the planet cards during setup, are you told to exhaust them? No. Thus, you are not gaining them at that time.

Edit: I just wanted to add that they would remain exhausted throughout the first Action Phase until the first Status Phase. I think we're all agreed that this does not happen with the planets you begin control with.
 
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Victor Ferreira
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Bizud wrote:
Are you saying that they should get trade goods for planets that they "gained control" of at some time prior to the beginning of the game (perhaps centuries)?

Centuries? How long does it take you to do set-up? That's literally minutes before.

Quote:
Abilities don't function until the game begins.

What makes you think that? As factions are selected first, the ability is certainly in play before. At least one other faction off the top of my head, the ghosts, has an ability that specifically functions during set-up.

Quote:
The only time control of planets can be gained is when the specific words "gain control" are used, yes.

Then what am I doing during set-up? Again, if I'm not gaining control, then how am I gaining control?

Clipper wrote:
Here is another rule to help satisfy the debate:

RRG - Control wrote:
24.1 When a player gains control of a planet, he takes the planet card that corresponds to that planet and places it in his play area; that card is exhausted.


When you take the planet cards during setup, are you told to exhaust them? No. Thus, you are not gaining them at that time.

The rule passage you're quoting in-context is referring to planets you gain control of after play begins, so I wouldn't think that would necessarily have anything to do with plants you've gained control of before that anyway. And even if it is a general rule, the set-up rules say they're placed face-up, so that would just sound like a specific rule exception to me.



All that said, I'm startled and perplexed by what seems to be an immediate consensus to the contrary of what I thought was totally obvious. If I need to rethink how I'm approaching rule interpretations for this game, then I'll give it another read, but that seems unnecessarily confusing and I'm not sure how or why y'all seem so immediately sure of something so counterintuitive.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
The rule passage you're quoting in-context is referring to planets you gain control of after play begins, so I wouldn't think that would necessarily have anything to do with plants you've gained control of before that anyway. And even if it is a general rule, the set-up rules say they're placed face-up, so that would just sound like a specific rule exception to me.

It is a specific rules exception... you are getting planet cards and thus having control of them without specifically gaining control of the planets.

You are yet to provide any proof that it is possible to 'gain control' of a planet during setup. The rules only describe one way of gaining control of planets and it does not fit the description nor method used during setup. The onus is on you here to provide evidence to suggest that you are gaining control during the setup of the game, as we already have several rules that suggest you are not gaining control during setup.
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Maciej Gębal
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Here's how I see it:

First and foremost:

Quote:
CONTROL 24.2:
A player cannot gain control of a planet that he already controls.


Ok, so how do I know that I control a planet?

Quote:
CONTROL 24.1:
When a player gains control of a planet, he takes the planet card that corresponds to that planet and places it in his play area; that card is exhausted.

CONTROL 24.3:
While a player controls a planet, that planet's card remains in his play area unitl he loses control of that planet


Ok, so gaining control of a planet mean I place that card in my play area [so word "gain control of a planet" already have in itself an instruction to "place that planet card in your play area"]. And at the same time if I have a planet card in my play area, I control it [that's how it is indicated]. So...

Quote:
COMPLETE SETUP, STEP 5 - DISTRIBUTE STARTING PLANET CARDS:
Each player takes the planet cards that correspond to the planets in his home system and places them faceup in his play area


If I'm supposed to gain control of them, why doesn't it just saying "Gain control of planets in your home system. Place their planets faceup in your play area instead of exhausting them"? It would be far clearer than this. Instead it instructs me to just place them in my play area [which indicates that I control them]. And I haven't placed any units or control tokens on these planets, since the instructions didn't tell me to do it. It will tell me to do it far later in STEP 11, but as per rules, when placing my units there I cannot gain control of them since I already have them in my play area [hence I control them and I cannot gain control of a planet I already control as per CONTROL 24.2].

That's how I see it at least.

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Sander Stroom
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This is a rule-lawyer case... Saar does not start the game (first strategy phase) with any trade goods. Nowhere does it say that you "gain" the planets at the beginning of the game.

Thematically, the Clan is already on the planet before the game begins. The game begins at a moment in time when the Lazax have been de-throned and other races start trying to claim the throne for themselves. It does not start from nothing. The races already have their home systems. Clan of Saar race sheet does not mention them starting with Trade goods. You could think of it like they had already used the trade goods.
 
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Maciej Gębal
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Sande24 wrote:
Thematically, the Clan is already on the planet before the game begins. The game begins at a moment in time when the Lazax have been de-throned and other races start trying to claim the throne for themselves. It does not start from nothing. The races already have their home systems. Clan of Saar race sheet does not mention them starting with Trade goods. You could think of it like they had already used the trade goods.


Actually according to the "Lore Compendium" the game takes place a few thousands of years later. The Emperor and other Lazax died in the Twilight Wars and according to the compendium:

Quote:
Distant Suns
Millenia have passed since the final battles of the Twilight Wars. The subjects of the former Galactic Council have forgotten the abject horrors of war. [...] Reconstruction , though it has taken many years, has seen many of the homeworlds of the Great Races return to their pre-war states.



But, you are right it is a bit of rule-lawyer case I'm afraid...

To me it is obvious, that you should start with the control of the planet and you gain anything during the play itself not in the setup.
 
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Nick Naz
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I totally agree. If the Saar player wishes to argue this extremely rules centric case before the game has begun, my table would agree with them in a hurry.

He would then start the game with two trade goods and his home planets exhausted...

In all honesty we basically have a couple players that we refer all rulings to; they have proven very knowledgeable and fair in the past- and the reason that there are two of them is that the player involved in the dispute is not allowed to rule in his own favor( but is allowed to rule against himself as much as he would like).
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Steve Williams
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You are absolutely wrong. You do not gain your starting planets, you already have them. The rules are blatantly clear here.

If you want to ignore the rules and do what you like, go whole hog and start the game with 35 Trade Goods, citing the planets the Saar gained control of in prior games.

T10 once wrote:
As a rule of thumb, designers do not hide "Easter Eggs" in the rules. If clever reading is required to unlock some sort of hidden option, it's probably the result of wishful thinking.
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Riku Koskinen
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Rules as written:
The setup does not say you gain control of the home planets. The Saar ability says that you can scavenge when you gain control of planets.

STEP 5—DISTRIBUTE STARTING PLANET CARDS: Each player takes the planet cards that correspond to the planets in his home system and places them faceup in his play area.

Thematic reasoning:
The clan scavenges new planets they acquire, because either they have the ability to scavenge what remains from the previous controller of the planet, or in case of neutral planets, they can just scrap some old ruins and other things still present there. Their homeworld is surely fully explored ages ago, and there is nothing to scavenge at the time TI4 begins.

IMHO reasoning:
-There is no reminder on the Saar sheet to start the game with trade goods. If that was the intent, it would be easily forgotten and I am pretty sure there would be a mention of it.
-It is questionable whether the racial traits are supposed to function during the setup, unless they specifically say so. I find it much more intuitive that setup is not a part of the actual game and the abilities start functioning only when the setup is finished.
 
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Peter Walsh
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
halbower wrote:
You don’t “gain control”; you “begin” with control.

Yes, like I said, I understand that. What I'm saying is that I begin with control that I gained during set-up, before the beginning.

That the literal verbiage of "gaining" isn't perfectly deconstructed or replicated in the set-up rule text should not be taken as a sufficient counter to the obvious and intuitive answer that of course it's the same.

Quote:
And the second, bolder sentence is clear: you gain control during the game after set up.

No, it says that you gain control of additional planets during the game after set-up. It doesn't all suggest that's the only time control of planets can be gained, certainly not of home system planets.

And even if it did, then we'd still be stuck with the question I already asked: How did I gain control of those planets without gaining control of those planets?

If that's the only rule passage related to the question, then it's insufficient. I'll have to wait on something else.


Rules often take language with common usages that are narrowed down to become highly specific in game terms. You say that you understand the difference between "gain control" and "begin" with control, but you go on to show that you do not understand those words in game terms.

If you "begin" with something in game terms you did not "gain" it in game terms. It may be so that in common usage of the word "gain" you did, but not in game terms. The Clan of Saar does not start with zero planets and then "gain" its two home planets at start of game. The beginning condition of the game is that it has two planets.
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Henry Allen
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If a thematic explanation helps, you gain control of the Saar during setup but they already had control of their home planets at that time and have long since squandered the trade goods in question on laser pointers and catnip.
 
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Tim Burris
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:

Centuries? How long does it take you to do set-up? That's literally minutes before.


I was speaking thematically. The Saar have owned those planets for a long time; it makes no sense for them to get trade goods from Scavenge there.

Quote:

What makes you think that? As factions are selected first, the ability is certainly in play before. At least one other faction off the top of my head, the ghosts, has an ability that specifically functions during set-up.


The Ghosts race card specifically mentions that ability functions during set-up. Nothing else does, but this is irrelevant, because really, you don't actually "gain" the planets before the game begins either, but if you want to insist that you do, here is the an interpretation that squares with what the actual rules are, which is that they do not begin the game with any trade goods.

Quote:
Then what am I doing during set-up? Again, if I'm not gaining control, then how am I gaining control?


You're not gaining control, you begin with it. "Gain control" has a specific, technical meaning.

Quote:
The rule passage you're quoting in-context is referring to planets you gain control of after play begins, so I wouldn't think that would necessarily have anything to do with plants you've gained control of before that anyway. And even if it is a general rule, the set-up rules say they're placed face-up, so that would just sound like a specific rule exception to me.


There is nothing in the passage in question that specifies that it is referring to planets you gain control of after play begins (other than the fact that that IS in fact the only way you gain control of planets). The sentence immediately preceding it refers to planets you gain after the game begins, but that's in a different paragraph, which does matter. This almost seems like a tacit admission that beginning the game with control of planets is not the same as gaining them. But that should be obvious. The game does not begin with you "gaining" all of the things you start the game with (starting fleet, technologies, etc.). You already own these things when the game begins.

Quote:
I'm not sure how or why y'all seem so immediately sure of something so counterintuitive.


It's not counterintuitive if you've played this game, or games remotely like it, before. The precise "verbiage" does in fact matter. Things have technical meanings, and "gain control" is one of those. The rules even make this clear. Section 24 makes an explicit distinction between the planets you begin with and the planets you gain control of later on. Notice that they use the words "gain control" in literally every other instance, but not for the planets you begin with? That is not an accident. Halbower's very first reply to your post should have been sufficient to end this thread.
 
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Jorgen Peddersen
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Bizud wrote:
The game does not begin with you "gaining" all of the things you start the game with (starting fleet, technologies, etc.). You already own these things when the game begins.

Actually, you do gain a few other things. Specifically, the following things are literally gained during setup:
• The Speaker Token
• Stating Technologies
• Starting Units

Of course, gaining these things is actually treated the same way as if you were to gain them via other in-game effects, which is why they used the term 'gain', further proving the point that the control of the planets is not gained.

 
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Victor Ferreira
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Clipper wrote:
You are yet to provide any proof that it is possible to 'gain control' of a planet during setup.

Well, I thought that the only proof that I needed was that during set-up I go from not having control of a planet to having control of a planet. Apparently, I was mistaken.

Bizud wrote:
Notice that they use the words "gain control" in literally every other instance, but not for the planets you begin with? That is not an accident.
RavendeKruk wrote:
If I'm supposed to gain control of them, why doesn't it just saying "Gain control of planets in your home system. Place their planets faceup in your play area instead of exhausting them"?

Idk, why does it say they're placed "face-up" rather than "readied"? "Face-up" isn't rule verbiage the same way that "readied" is, but we all understand intuitively that they're initially readied even though it doesn't explicitly say so.
I've played enough games to know that rule verbiage is hardly ever perfect, so I try to use some common sense when parsing it. Same reason why everyone in my group immediately intuitively assumed Hyper Metabolism was intended to give 3 command tokens rather than 2.
I've been convinced that I was mistaken, but I hope y'all can see why I wasn't unjustified in thinking as I did.

Padish wrote:
-There is no reminder on the Saar sheet to start the game with trade goods. If that was the intent, it would be easily forgotten and I am pretty sure there would be a mention of it.
-It is questionable whether the racial traits are supposed to function during the setup, unless they specifically say so. I find it much more intuitive that setup is not a part of the actual game and the abilities start functioning only when the setup is finished.

There's also no reminder that the way their Space Docks work mean they, unlike most other races, can easily produce in a system immediately after initially taking control of it. This is something that somebody casually reading the sheet, especially somebody new, might not immediately consider, and yet there's no need for mention of it.
As for what's intuitive, we probably shouldn't argue about what's intuitive here, since apparently me arguing what was intuitive to me turned out not to be valid.

GamerdadMich wrote:
I totally agree. If the Saar player wishes to argue this extremely rules centric case before the game has begun, my table would agree with them in a hurry.
He would then start the game with two trade goods and his home planets exhausted...

The set-up rules specifically state that they go face-up, and we all know specific beats general. My interpretation might be wrong, but your mockery is neither sensical nor particularly helpful.

IncrediSteve wrote:
You are absolutely wrong... The rules are blatantly clear here.
If you want to ignore the rules and do what you like, go whole hog and start the game with 35 Trade Goods

Oh come now. I may be wrong, but let's not pretend the rules are blatantly clear. Such exaggerations are unnecessary.
 
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
Oh come now. I may be wrong, but let's not pretend the rules are blatantly clear. Such exaggerations are unnecessary.


If you're going to continue arguing a dead point when multiple citations have already proven it clear, then yes exaggeration is now necessary. I take it you weren't around for TI3? I'd hate to have had to discuss all the rules corner cases of that edition with such a clear cut rules troll.
 
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
Can't believe I couldn't find this already addressed anywhere, but do the Saar start the game with two trade goods for Scavenging their own two starting planets in their home system?

Of course this hasn't been addressed before, because OMG you're the first person that questions this! I didn't read the discussion, because it seems ridiculous.

No extra trade goods for Saar at the start of the game, period.
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Twilight_Sonata wrote:
Oh come now. I may be wrong

There's no "may be" about it. You are wrong - Saar do not start off with trade goods. If you really want confirmation of that, submit the rules question, and you'll get the answer.
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Personally, I think the initial rules question was a valid one. There was a question to be answered and I don't feel that Victor should be mocked for his views. Yes, the stubbornness in the debate was infuriating, and that was not helped by the tone, but surely we can keep this civil.

Incidentally, I think we also all missed this in our initial reading of his most recent post:
Twilight_Sonata wrote:
I've been convinced that I was mistaken, but I hope y'all can see why I wasn't unjustified in thinking as I did.


So yeah, it appears we are now in agreement at least. Victor, I strongly suggest you are careful where you use in future, as it adds a sarcastic tone to everything and made your post seem rather condescending, as if you were brushing off the various arguments as worthless compared to your own. It did not come across as an attempt of justification.
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