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Subject: Specific cards: Defectors rss

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Philip Thomas
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Background: Throughout the Cold War there were people crossing sides, in both directions, whether dissidents, exposed spies, or those attracted by the ideology of the other superpower.

Effect: 2 OPs recurring USA event. If played as a headline event cancels USSR headline. If played for Ops by USSR, USA gains 1 Vp.

Numbering Noteespite being an Early War event, this is card nunmber 103, last on the list. Not sure why that is.

Strategy: This a powerful little card, since the Headline+first action combo is one of the big Soviet strengths. As well as directly preventing the combo by cancelling the headline, the fear of Defectors can mean the USSR plays relatively weak events as headlines rather than going for the strongest combination available. As USSR this is a good card to keep in your hand until just after a reshuffle, so that you can make your headlines in peace.
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Arne Jæger
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what would happen if USSR played it as an headline? surely he would have better choices... but would he lose 1 VP or what?
 
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Patrick Sullivan
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Arnebarnet wrote:
what would happen if USSR played it as an headline? surely he would have better choices... but would he lose 1 VP or what?


No, because you can't play it for Ops (thus not triggering the 1 vp part). It would just cancel your own headline event. It would be a bad play.
 
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Philip Thomas
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If the USSR played Defectors as a headline nothing would happen: the card would cancel the USSR headline, which is Defectors...

While not the strongest of USSR headlines, there are circumstances where you might choose to play it. For example, if USA can see your headline (via Space Race) then it isn't safe to play a Scoring Card, so if your hand was just Scoring cards and USA events Defectors might be the least among the various evils.
 
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France
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What happen if USSR player play a US Event as a headline value ? ( a nasty one)

If I read well, the US event is not triggered !

it can be a good way to get rid of a really unpleasant event
 
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Philip Thomas
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Yes, Defectors can cancel a US event played as headline by Soviets. If the Soviets can see the US headline in advance (using the Space Race ability) and they see Defectors they can do this safely. If they can't see the US headline then its a bit risky.

Same thing for Scoring cards which would be bad for the USSR, you can try to get them cancelled by Defectors too.
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France
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yes, that is exactly what has just happened in my game.

He(US) played Defectors , so I discarded Grain Sales that I was holding for 3 turns. I am too far on Space race to Space race Grain Sales ...

good opportunity !
 
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Henric Fröberg
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But, can Defectors only prevent USSR Headlines with an Ops value of 1 or 2? Since higher Ops value means you go first, a Soviet Headline with 3 or 4 points would happen before the Defectors take place.

So, if you're unlucky, you headlining Defectors as the US could mean you don't get anything out of your Headline, if the Soviets play a higher card.

Am I right?
 
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Mike R
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HenricF wrote:
But, can Defectors only prevent USSR Headlines with an Ops value of 1 or 2? Since higher Ops value means you go first, a Soviet Headline with 3 or 4 points would happen before the Defectors take place.

So, if you're unlucky, you headlining Defectors as the US could mean you don't get anything out of your Headline, if the Soviets play a higher card.

Am I right?


Nope, Defectors always cancels the USSR headline, regardless of OPs value.
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Henric Fröberg
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Ok, thanks!
 
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Russ Hewson
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The edge case is that it doesn't cancel something that's already happened. So if you draw Defectors with Five Year Plan and the USSR has already resolved its 4-op headline then the USSR headline stands as the Defectors don't have a time machine!
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Carol
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Uhtoff wrote:
The edge case is that it doesn't cancel something that's already happened. So if you draw Defectors with Five Year Plan and the USSR has already resolved its 4-op headline then the USSR headline stands as the Defectors don't have a time machine!


So we have contradictory rulings here Mike R says the defectors would always prevent the headline regardless of the OPs value of USSR headline.We had already discussion on this topic http://boardgamegeek.com/article/5179858#5179858 and consensus is that it is cancelling all USSR headline cards
 
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Russ Hewson
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Not at all contradictory.

Case 1 - The USSR headlines We Will Bury You, the US headlines Defectors, as they are both revealed simultaneously the special ability of Defectors kicks in and the USSR headline is cancelled.

Case 2 - The USSR headlines We Will Bury You, the US headlines Five Year Plan, normal headline resolution happens and We Will Bury You is resolved first as it has a higher ops value, DEFCON is dropped and the 3VPs are stored up for the first US action round. Five Year Plan resolves second and picks up Defectors from the USSR hand, but the USSR headline has already happened and the Defectors can't go back in time and cancel it so they don't do anything.
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Charles Robinson
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These are not contradictory rulings, they are two different cases:

1) The USA headlines the Defectors card. The USSR headline is cancelled, regardless of its Ops value.

2) The USA headlines a card that pulls (and is able to trigger) Defectors from the USSR hand (such as with a USA headline of Five Year Plan or Grain Sales), or from the discard pile (i.e. using Star Wars). In this particular case, since the USA player did not actually headline Defectors, a USSR headline card with a high enough Ops value such that it is resolved prior to the USA headline is not cancelled. (I believe you can find this ruling in the FAQ. I don't pretend to know the designers' minds, but it is consistent with the rules for the headline phase, and it does avoid all kinds of confusion that could result from executing the USSR event, and then having to undo all the changes to the state of the game once the USA cancels the USSR headline.)

EDIT: Well, Russ beat me to it. In order to prevent my post from being superfluous, here's some clarification of the problem that resetting the board position could pose in case 2 if Defectors triggered by another event did still cancel the USSR headline: Most events are straightforward, and can be easily undone, but things could get very confusing in the case of cards like ABM Treaty or Glasnost (with Reformer in effect) - changes resulting from placing influence, or from a coup, are easy to track, but I'd hate to have to remember each power's influence in several different countries after a number of realignment rolls...
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Carol
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Uhtoff wrote:
Not at all contradictory.

Case 1 - The USSR headlines We Will Bury You, the US headlines Defectors, as they are both revealed simultaneously the special ability of Defectors kicks in and the USSR headline is cancelled.


Yes I was just thinking about this one. I am just after 3 full games of TS (in which we played the card wrong ) and did not encounter other cases but they will come...
 
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Dan Moore
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Philip Thomas wrote:
If the USSR played Defectors as a headline nothing would happen: the card would cancel the USSR headline, which is Defectors...



. . . and now you know just where Defectors is: in the discard, hopefully gone for quite the time . . . ?
 
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