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Twilight Imperium (Fourth Edition)» Forums » Strategy

Subject: Secret Objectives Relying on Other Players rss

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Brian Petersen
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I realized yesterday during a game that all but one of the action phase secret objectives & one of the status phase secret objectives rely more on other player's actions than your own (barring somebody "buying" a point).

Turn Their Fleets to Dust: Unless you get PDS II or are Xxcha, you can only score this if somebody attacks you, Even then, you either need somebody to be next to your PDS planets. Either way, they need to have ships <= PDS dice, and substantially less than that for good odds. Action Cards can destroy your PDS or cancel the hits they produced.

Make an Example of Their World: Usually the system containing infantry contains the unit that transported them there. A lone carrier is no match for 2 dreadnaughts, so they retreat with all the infantry before the Bombardment step. This is also hard countered by PDS without action cards, War Suns, or Letnev.

Spark a Rebellion: If you don't score this in the first round when everyone at 0 is tied for most, it relies on players out of your range not outscoring players in your range. And if you're already winning when you draw it... Hard countered by Skilled Retreat/Foresight.

Destroy Their Greatest Ship: Requires an opponent to build their flagship or research & build War Sun. It's usually part of a big huge fleet. Hard countered by Skilled Retreat/Foresight.

Cut Supply Lines: Space Docks typically are protected by large fleets. This is impossible to score against a player with Floating Factories. This opens you up to both Experimental Battle Station and Lucky Shot. If all 3 Space Docks are on the board & the system isn't locked down, they can use Construction to remove the Space Dock. Other players can also play an AC to remove the Space Dock unless it's a Home System. On top of all that, outside of Home Systems, not all players are likely to build Space Docks, i.e. Arborec, Hacan, Letnev, players without 3 resource planets.


Action Phase Secret Objectives are the best way to score your 10th point without Imperial, but they're mostly impossible without bad moves from other players. Meanwhile, status phase secret objectives like Discard 5 AC's, Have both Faction Techs, and Master the Laws of Physics are impossible to stop, and Have 4 PDS, Have 3 Space Docks, and Have 5 Dreadnaughts are very difficult to stop.

So, do you consider those Secret Objectives to be dead draws to be replaced ASAP, try & make cheesy deals with other players to make them scoreable, or try & achieve them where the other player is more guaranteed to stand their ground?
 
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Distephano
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1. Turn your fleet to dust. Do you realise that you have 2 neighbours minimum who are going to move ships eventually? Plus people are blocking systems with destroyers for defense measures. That`s your target.

2. If a lone carrier slipped away from your dreadnaughts, then either by skilled retreat action card or by dice cancer. First one can be dealed with by sabotage, the other one by surgeon. It`s an easy one, just use p.1 (turn their fleet to dust), avoid bombardment, if necessary, and kill that gf(s).

3. You are supposed to score objectives. This one is easier to score early, mid & late game just attack the leader. If you are the leader, you have a support of the throne. give it to number 2 and if he`s dumb enough & accept this, attack a tied player and score on him. If you, as the leader, see that you can`t score anything and no. 2 is going to get to your VP track, keep it and attack him later.

4. Warsuns are almost never on the field (except muaat & longwar), but it`s not hard to see a flagship on the map. They are quite useful for at leat half the races, so just hunt them.

5. Mid & late game you should have enough speed to make p.1 come true (turn their fleet to dust) and block a space dock. There are always some least defended space docks somewhere on the map. Fleets are flying, dying & scoring. Plan your assault. This one is impossible to score on Saar & Arborec, but thats their racial advantages. Other players always have either 2 or 3 space docks on the map and none of them have enough resources to protect their all of their spaces (unless they are stacked "hacan style") which is useless, since sarween tools became quit cr@ppy.


None of them are hard to score. Either wait for an opportunity or prepare one yourself.
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Scott Lewis
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I agree with Distephano. I've easily scored Turn their Fleets to Dust and Make an Example. Even the most careful player will have a hard time making it so every possible way to counter all these objectives is done - and chances are, if they are spending so much time worrying about those objectives being scored against them, they aren't spending enough effort on their OWN victory points.
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Brian Petersen
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This may just be a problem with the meta of my playgroup, but...

The problem isn't that the lone carrier retreats in a manner that causes a draw. The problem is that it reaches Step 2 - Announce Retreats, picks up all the infantry, and then there are no infantry for me to bombard.
I usually don't see this objective scored until someone has played Rise of a Messiah.

Since Lightwave Deflectors is only 2 techs away from Gravity Drive (which most players get), I hardly ever see people bother using the single ship movement block. I also hardly ever see players send less ships than PDS dice in range, and that is usually coupled with enough infantry to destroy the PDS.

All the flagships in my last 3 games were built either to defend or take a home system in the last round or two. The others were built because they had the Secret Objective without other player's interference (win a combat in which your flagship participated & survived).

There are typically only 10 undrawn action cards by the end of the game, so space docks and PDS are often destroyed that way. I also usually have 4-5 players. In the 4P games, PDS is usually more popular than space docks. In the 5P games, Construction is unpopular.

But, maybe it's just my meta.
 
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C Pudd
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distephano wrote:
... since sarween tools became quit cr@ppy....


Explain?

I have heard this view before and don't believe it, but I don't think I have heard an explanation as to why people think this.
 
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Distephano
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Briefly, unlike in 3rd ed, sarween tools no longer tied to space dock but production itself, so if you stack them up (like many players did, esp. letnev & hacan), you wont get it`s full potential from your 2nd & 3rd docks.

It`s been nerfed in this edition but my inner Arborec approves.
 
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James B.
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You're leaving out how the other objectives tie into the secret objectives:

Turn Their Fleets to Dust (SO) pairs well with Objectives that spread ships out like Become the Gatekeeper (SO), Control the Region (SO), Learn the Secrets of the Cosmos (SO), Threaten Enemies (SO), Intimidate the Council (PO1), Expand Borders (PO1), and Subdue Galaxy (PO2). It also synergizes with objectives tied to control of planetary traits as players typically need to stretch to get the last required planet. And if you get Establish a Perimeter (SO) with Turn Their Fleets to Dust (SO)...you are in a good position to get both scored.

Make an Example of Their World (SO)...same argument here...if players are spreading thin to grab the last required planet for an objective, Example of Their World (SO) becomes easier to score.

Spark a Rebellion (SO)...yeah...its a tricky one to score.

Destroy Their Greatest Ship (SO) pairs with a player that wants to score Unveil Flagship (SO). And while it's rare for players to get War Suns...there is always at least half of the board's flagships on the board...usually all.

Cut Supply Lines (SO) pairs with a player that wants to score Fuel the War Machine (SO).
 
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