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Subject: Drives underpowered? rss

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Cool Guy
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What is the point of researching fusion or tachyon drives? Fusion drives are a pretty rare buy in most cases I see as the energy cost is increased and movement is generally not a problem. I know they give an initiative boost as well but that doesn’t seem to be worth 4 science and a research action when you can just buy positron computer for +2 and initiative. The drives just don’t seem worthwhile at all. Is there something that I am missing?
 
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Loren Cadelinia
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DaCooGa wrote:
What is the point of researching fusion or tachyon drives? Fusion drives are a pretty rare buy in most cases I see as the energy cost is increased and movement is generally not a problem. I know they give an initiative boost as well but that doesn’t seem to be worth 4 science and a research action when you can just buy positron computer for +2 and initiative. The drives just don’t seem worthwhile at all. Is there something that I am missing?


I think a lot of players underestimate ship movement. It can be a very deadly weapon, and you can make people pay for it. Then the meta game evolves, these fusion drives start to deter other players movements, then more of your table will be fighting over 1st player to research these drives.

Don’t forget, each ship must have a drive. So, unlike a positron computer, when you replace your drive, you are not taking up a valuable spot on the ship. You get initiative, mobility, and you still have space for your trusty positron computer if you so choose, or whatever upgrade you need at the given game state.
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Peter Strait
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It also lets fewer ships defend more space, as in, which hexes could the ship move to if needed?
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Ryucoo
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ErsatzDragon wrote:
It also lets fewer ships defend more space, as in, which hexes could the ship move to if needed?


This. Means you can keep your fleet spread out rather than bunched up in one sector. Also means your opponent is less likely to be able to meet you, meaning you can be less obvious where you will attack, and more able to hit their undefended sectors for a quick surprise attack.

Basically they give you more options and make you less readable. Great bit of tech in my opinion.
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Chris K.
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DaCooGa wrote:
What is the point of researching fusion or tachyon drives? Fusion drives are a pretty rare buy in most cases I see as the energy cost is increased and movement is generally not a problem. I know they give an initiative boost as well but that doesn’t seem to be worth 4 science and a research action when you can just buy positron computer for +2 and initiative. The drives just don’t seem worthwhile at all. Is there something that I am missing?


The value of drives is dependent on a few things:

A) needing some movement during the game
This is mostly the case when you need to clean up some ancients and they are a bit apart. Then even the Fusion drives double your efficiency to move your ships around, usually saving you anything between 3 and 6 actions over the course of the game, so 6 to 18 Money in Action Costs.

B) Anti-Choke-Point Exploration
Drives only shine if you can actually play a flexible maneuver based strategy. To do this you need more than one access points to your neighbours. It does not work nearly as well in a "groupthink" situation where everyone still believes that chokepoints are the way to go.

C) Cloaking Device
If you manage to snatch up Cloaking Device you have just doubled the value of any drives you have, as your fleet becomes basically unstoppable. (at least with reasonable investment on your opponents part)

D) A 3+ Ship Movement race
They get some extra value out of drives, since they can more directly leverage them. That said, they also mitigate the drawback of only having 2 Ship Movements a bit.

And all of this is on top of the Initiative benefit that is particularly valuable on Ancient hunting cruisers.
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Loren Cadelinia
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Ryucoo wrote:

Basically they give you more options and make you less readable.


Well said!
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Scott Kahler
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Bigger drives and wormhole generators have given me many extra points at the end of the game where I've been able to sneak behind enemy lines.
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Doug DeMoss
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You also may need fewer actions to launch an attack when your ships can move farther on each activation. That may mean you can afford to bring MORE ships, or also do an upgrade, or... whatever.

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DB
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Mobility is crucial to making the end game interesting. If everyone's turtled up and stuck with derpy engines, rounds 8 and 9 really bog down into monoliths, minmaxing research for points, and fighting over the center.

With multiple connections and ships that can move 2 or 3 sectors at a time, you end with much more of a game about maneuver and position and risk-taking. I find that a lot more fun spending the time on accounting.
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Seth
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They're also great for ruining enemy territory. A common strategy, particularly in the last round or so, is to try to bust through bordering opponents and take their hexes - the farther each ship can move with an activation, the deeper into their space you can go. A small fleet of ships with neutron bombs and a high-end drive is extremely threatening.
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Ryucoo
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ATT_Turan wrote:
They're also great for ruining enemy territory. A common strategy, particularly in the last round or so, is to try to bust through bordering opponents and take their hexes - the farther each ship can move with an activation, the deeper into their space you can go. A small fleet of ships with neutron bombs and a high-end drive is extremely threatening.


This. If you can ‘outrun’ your opponent, you can steal some valuable territory from him, at any point in the game.
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Peter Bakija
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DaCooGa wrote:
What is the point of researching fusion or tachyon drives? Fusion drives are a pretty rare buy in most cases I see as the energy cost is increased and movement is generally not a problem. I know they give an initiative boost as well but that doesn’t seem to be worth 4 science and a research action when you can just buy positron computer for +2 and initiative. The drives just don’t seem worthwhile at all. Is there something that I am missing?


Being able to move multiple hexes means you can go further into your opponents space; use slow/cheap ships to open up hexes by pinning things that are there, and then send fast, strong ships deeper into enemy territory. And if you can move 2-3 hexes instead of 1, your opponents need to spend more effort worrying about where you are going to go.

Fast ships are good ships in this game.
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Kevin De Schutter
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Never underestimate the powa of the virtual fleet...or the interceptor moving towards the other side of the map...in a blink !!! Or on turn 9...
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Ryucoo
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Zekere wrote:
Never underestimate the powa of the virtual fleet...or the interceptor moving towards the other side of the map...in a blink !!! Or on turn 9...


Insignificant Interceptor lolling around harmlessly in the last round + neutron bomb tech + advanced drives = WTF

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