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Star Trek: Ascendancy – Vulcan High Command» Forums » Rules

Subject: What do you do when a Vulcan lies? rss

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Maldus Alver

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So one of the traits (they both seem like restrictions) makes it illegal for Vulcan to lie. Of course in the video above you can see this can be false. So how is it enforced? The rule in question is:

Honest Meddling A Vulcan player may not lie to other players. On your turn you may spend commands to move ships in systems marked with a Vulcan token.

So is the token sort of a way you have to televise your movements giving other players warning as to your intentions?
 
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Guðmundur Skallagrímson
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When the ability says "move ships" it doesn't say "move your ships"...
The ability is called "Meddling" after all...



And as for lying, ask the Vulcan player: "What is your secret agenda for winning the game?" And the player should answer "Of course I cannot reveal that information." Not a lie. But ask the Vulcan player: "If I give you this trade agreement and passage through my space, will you attack my home world in the next 5 turns?" and if the player answers "I will not attack your home world for the next 5 turns" then the Vulcan player has to do the thing that was said. We all might ask what happens if the Vulcan player attacks the ally's home world in 3 turns, but it just can't happen, just like a player can't move 10 systems without warp tokens or set all dice in combat to 6s instead of rolling - it's not allowed. Sounds like crazy fun to me - making the Vulcans agree to all kinds of crazy things, knowing I can trust them, until I can't - just like they are portrayed on the show!
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Maldus Alver

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guthmundur wrote:
When the ability says "move ships" it doesn't say "move your ships"...
The ability is called "Meddling" after all...



And as for lying, ask the Vulcan player: "What is your secret agenda for winning the game?" And the player should answer "Of course I cannot reveal that information." Not a lie. But ask the Vulcan player: "If I give you this trade agreement and passage through my space, will you attack my home world in the next 5 turns?" and if the player answers "I will not attack your home world for the next 5 turns" then the Vulcan player has to do the thing that was said. We all might ask what happens if the Vulcan player attacks the ally's home world in 3 turns, but it just can't happen, just like a player can't move 10 systems without warp tokens or set all dice in combat to 6s instead of rolling - it's not allowed. Sounds like crazy fun to me - making the Vulcans agree to all kinds of crazy things, knowing I can trust them, until I can't - just like they are portrayed on the show!


So it is still a role play mechanic. Not too keen on those. I like open ended mechanics that make players think (I didn't know you could do that) but I like them to have some sort of binding set so there can't be up for debate. Sort of like promissory notes in Twilight Imperium. I mean you can still make any other deal outside of those notes and the only thing binding is the honor system (and your ability to make future deals).
 
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marcin marcinek
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Since on the left we have a negative ability and on the right a positive one, the truth part should be moved for clarity.

LEFT
Logical and honest
Vulcans must retreat from Space Battles, when able, if they are outnumbered by a rival with more total Weapon and Shield Upgrades.
The Vulcan player may not lie to other players.

RIGHT
MEDDLING
On your turn, you may spend Commands to move ships in Systems marked with a Vulcan token.
 
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Jon Snow
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goo But assuming the designers did have a specific intent in the way they wrote it, your comment made me look at Honest Meddling again. It says you can move other people's ships! And not lie about it. In the other thread on the main game board, someone asked why lying mattered. It matters very much, if you are going to move another player/players ships, and they ask you if you are going to do it beforehand, doesn't it?

This is easy: after answering the other player/s questions about "Hey, are you going to move my ship/s next turn?" they either moved another person's ship on their next turn or they didn't! So because the Vulcans can move your ship/s where they have an Ambassador piece, you are getting a fair warning about it--although you'll have to interpret their refusal to answer the question if that happens!

And here's the main thing Vulcans could lie about that would directly affect the game. Of course, I'ed rule that they can't lie about anything at all in the game, but certainly other things would be harder to tell right away if the Vulcans lied. This is easy: they either moved another person's ship on their next turn or they didn't!

Mystery solved?
 
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marcin marcinek
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It flat out says vulcan player can't lie to other players. It doesn't say he cannot lie about moving ships and moving ships only. It's two abilities clumped together for no good reason.
 
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Chip Morris
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It's not necessarily a negative ability. As a Vulcan, your statements of fact are absolutely certain. We can write a contract that you know I will not break, so it becomes a lot easier to make agreements as the Vulcans. You are absolutely trustworthy in as far as you have explicitly stated an agreement.

"If you accept a 1 culture trade agreement with me right now, I will not break it or attack you except in the case where you: (1) are one turn away from winning the game by Hegemony or conquest, (2) you attack me, or (3) you cancel the trade agreement. In return, you will allow me to colonize that planet you just discovered with no interference and promise to not attack me"

Would you take that agreement with the Vulcans on turn 1? They can offer it every game and they have to adhere to it.
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Mattias Elfström
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I have no idea if the no-lie rule has any real game effect or is there just for flavour.

That said I think this needs to be looked at in two different perspectives.

Going back on a deal or breaking an agreement isn't precisely lying. You can only actually lie in relation to facts. Any statements about future occurrences are much more uncertain.

For example, if the Vulcan is asked about his objective he cannot say "I have object x" when he in fact has objective y. He could however say "I don't want to divulge my objective".

If you make an agreement with a Vulcan he could say "my plan is not to attack you in the future", but even if that is true right now the changing game situation might make him change to another plan. This means agreements about future happenings with Vulcans are not more binding than any other agreement.

Captain James T. Kirk: Names, Lieutenant!
Lieutenant Valeris: I do not remember.
Captain Spock: A lie?
Lieutenant Valeris: A choice.
 
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Gandorques Hikla
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I just had a idea how a lying Vulcan Player could be handled, if the expansion will give no explicit rules about the matter,
by taking one ambassador permanently out of the session when a lie is identified.
Maybe giving the player who was lied to the choice which ambassador is taken out, including those not placed yet.
That would give the Vulcan some incentive to be honest, as the lost could be a game changing blow.

Thematically its also kind of fitting, as a lie would hurt your diplomatic reputation.
No one would tolerate ambassadors from a untrustworthy faction, rendering them useless.

The only thing that needs to be clarified then is the definition of a lie.
Talking about objectives is easier to clarify here, as the objectives dont change (as far as I know),
but changing plans and actions based on unfolding events could be hard to be called out as lie.
The Vulcans would still need to be very careful with their wording I guess, especially with a ambassador at stake.

But if they are willing to sacrifice the ambassador, the rule could also become a powerful way of bluffing.
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