Eric Jome
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Home worlds. We're fascinated by them. We are forever trying to get statistics on those that win, arguing about those that are good or bad, hoping for our favorites and groaning when we get the stinkers we hate. But let's take a quick look at what is certainly the worst starting world printed to date, Imperium Warlord.

Imperium Warlord
Cost 2, 2 vps
I: See +1 cards.
III: +1 Military, +2 Military vs Rebel

Really?! That's it?

There are only 12 Rebel military worlds in the entire game! 3 have a defense of 1, 2 have a defense of 2... that's precisely 5 cards you are hoping you MIGHT have in your opening six cards. Because your other option for homeworld is almost always going to be the other choice, no matter what you draw. This dog is up against;

Old Earth - You'd like any production world
Alpha Centauri - Best in game.
Earth's Lost Colony - Also best in game.
Ancient Race - Nearly as good as Alpha Centauri
Doomed World - You poor, poor bastard... no luck for you...
Galactic Developers

Apart from Doomed World, is there anything you'd pick the Warlord in front of? No. And Doomed World goes from scum to hero the minute you see something like Lost Species Ark World there... or either of two new power worlds at cost 6... or freaking Comet Zone.

You know what, too? Those cheap Rebel worlds you were hoping to get a benefit on? They generally suck. Basically it's Rebel Miners or Rebel Convict Mines or go home. No goods for you. You need at least +1 basic military for Rebel Warrior Race, about the only card you might want to see... what, were you going to hold Imperium Lords for 6 turns while you try to scrape together the cards to get it down? Seriously, you're going to need a military helper card to even get off the ground here... and pray you draw ANYTHING that helps your low point scoring Rebel fiasco.

"But, cosine, it's almost identical to New Sparta and Separatist Colony!" ... eww. Is that really the company you want to be keeping? And both of those are clearly better - the +1 vp isn't going to save this one. Sparta is itself military and offers real military power. Separatist offers a hefty bonus on Explore - which you are going to need if you are planning a military campaign. But why quibble? Separatist Colony versus Imperium Warlord is the contest of the clunkers. Thankfully you can't be dealt both at the start.

Imperium Warlord, I pity you. Keep your weak ass face down in the discard pile or we'll be forced to compare you to Space Marines, a mere development...
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Yet the general concensus is that military methods are stronger in RvI than their peaceful producing counterparts.

I think it's not genuine to say that Imperium Overlord can ONLY hit 5 worlds. He can hit five REBEL worlds, and he can hit any rebel military value 1 world. Later in the game, that rebel boost will help him over the hump to the value 5/6/7/9! Rebel locations and the associated points.

With any other military strength from a development or a world, he can hit the sweet spot of military power, just like the Separatist Colony.

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Colin Hunter
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I think looking at +1 card is actually pretty decent, I need to play it more, but it seems very comparable to new sparta to me.
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Lately, I'm a lot less happy when I start with a military ladder in my starting hand hand and my starting red world is the Damaged Alien Factory. It might be a military world, but it provides no military and has no military replacement effect!

Not that the world itself is unplayable: It's just that it feels more at home in the blue pile.
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cosine wrote:
Imperium Warlord
Cost 2, 2 vps
I: See +1 cards.
III: +1 Military, +2 Military vs Rebel

Really?! That's it?

There are only 12 Rebel military worlds in the entire game! 3 have a defense of 1, 2 have a defense of 2... that's precisely 5 cards you are hoping you MIGHT have in your opening six cards. Because your other option for homeworld is almost always going to be the other choice, no matter what you draw. This dog is up against;

Old Earth - You'd like any production world
Alpha Centauri - Best in game.
Earth's Lost Colony - Also best in game.
Ancient Race - Nearly as good as Alpha Centauri
Doomed World - You poor, poor bastard... no luck for you...
Galactic Developers


2pts ain't the be-all, end-all, but it's still nothing to mock at. Everything has its quirks.

OE, you may not get any colored worlds. A more realistic scenario is you get only get only a few, but are crippled by windfall's singular good, or the fact you need to rely on other people's Produce to get a good on Production. Else, you waste an action doing that which may have hlepd you elsewhere


AC, I generally like this card, but it there aren't that many brown worlds either. You strike out, it hurts just as bad as anything else

ELC... people generally do NOT like this, but I will digress, those aren't as P/C oriented, so I'll have to recomment on this later on.

AR... if you can produce on here for free, all the better

DW. You can make it big if you get a good subset of the 5's or 6's. Otherwise, a 4 will have to do. In the meantime, you got +1 look, and can pay for cheaper cards the old fashioned way. Use this with Rebel Cantina or Contact Specilist to get higher cost worlds for free (no yellow of course)

no comments on GD, but at least it steers you towards development. How that works out is another thing entirely

nothing on RC. I generally prefer CS. The -1 discount towards payment always works. The -1 military str can hurt you when the takeovers are coming, or in better practice, when you're trying to settle a yellow military world, but otherwise, it could work for you in keeping you safe from ICT (imp cloaking tech) or is otherwise of no impact. What does suck is if you can't settle any other Rebel worlds. You lose out alot with such fewer card draws. The 2/0 vs 1/1 between RC and CS is of moderate impact. If you start with RC, then cost is moot.

NS. +2 military can be used for everything, but you're hosed if IW is getting drop ship and the big boosts in military while you get not much of military str.



hibikir wrote:
Lately, I'm a lot less happy when I start with a military ladder in my starting hand hand and my starting red world is the Damaged Alien Factory. It might be a military world, but it provides no military and has no military replacement effect!

Not that the world itself is unplayable: It's just that it feels more at home in the blue pile.
I wondered about this too. Being a military world, it IS vulnerable to Rebel Alliance and Imperium Cloaking Technology.

For the former, if your attacker has Rebel worlds to back up Rebel Alliance, you're in a world of hurt as that's alot of military str. attcking you. The more painful thing comes in where you stand to lose a world that really ain't bad. As you put it, it feels more like a blue world, but this one can get taken over (I know, rare given all the prereqs, rarely happens, but still possible noneoftheless, and the 3rd expansion may make this even more in frequency)

For the latter, you still need to get to positive military for you to be vulnerable, but that's not that difficult to do given the new slew of military cards added to the deck. Otherwise, this "military themed world" is actually a good thing in where you'll never be vulnerable to ICT if you never make military str. Quite possible, as you just avoid military strength and buy all your cards onto your tableau like all the rest of the non-mil players.

I've concluded that that it meets the absolute, bare minimum for what they consider a "red homeworld" to be.
 
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No. New Sparta's +2 military accesses all the 2 defense Gene/Windfall worlds, allowing an immediate boost of cards.

Imperium Warlord, on the other hand, makes you vulnerable to Rebel Alliance, and there's only 2 (that's right, 2) Rebel 2 defense worlds. Your military options are much poorer than New Sparta's, and only marginally better than Epsilon Eridani/Separatist Colony's at the beginning of the game. I'd rather get the extra look from Separatist Colony over a +1 Rebel military most of the time.
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It's all about the goggles!
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byronczimmer wrote:
Yet the general concensus is that military methods are stronger in RvI than their peaceful producing counterparts.


You know, I don't buy this. In my view, we've reached an interesting situation of parity between consumption and settlement and development as strategies for winning the game.

Oddly enough, I don't think you're as able as you were in the past to play a single strategy and stick to it. These days, you've got to be able to swing with what you are handed more than ever. That's what makes some of the less than ideal starting worlds so much more bad - their needed cards for doing well out of the gate are rarer.

And, btw, I'll never understand people not liking Damaged Alien Factory. It's at least as good as Alpha Centauri and Ancient Race... maybe more if the right goals come up.
 
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thirteenthirtyseven wrote:
It's all about the goggles!


"My eyes! The goggles do nothing!"
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No, the Damaged Alien Factory is *not*, by itself, vulnerable to either the Rebel Alliance or the Imperium Cloaking Technology.

You must have either placed an Imperium card (for RA) or have positive Military (ICT) for DAF to possibly be subject to a takeover.
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cosine wrote:
Separatist Colony versus Imperium Warlord is the contest of the clunkers. Thankfully you can't be dealt both at the start.


SC is one of, if not the best of, the red worlds pre RvI. It is far from a clunker.

Let's assume for the moment that SC is average (an average of our opinions) and compare it to IW. Is +1 look worth +1 rebel military, +1 pt? Or go further vs new sparta, is +1 look +1 point and +1 rebel military worth +1 military?
And yes, these are the comparisons I want to make. They are homeworlds. You want the homeworlds to be on a somewhat even playing field. As you said everyone has their favorites, and I know that the + military ones are not yours. This throws some bias in how we weigh the powers. Therefore it is easiest to compare amongst the cards most similar, and make an assumption that the worlds were created to be fair.

Not that I agree, but lots of people view ELC as one of the worst start worlds. I think Ancient race is one of the worst. DW has recieved an interesting boost with the new start world process.

In conclusion, I don't think you've given IW a fair shake, but based off of what I know of your play, you probably won't ever like it. However, it is on par with other start worlds with similar powers and is far from being an obvious worst homeworld.

cosine wrote:
And, btw, I'll never understand people not liking Damaged Alien Factory. It's at least as good as Alpha Centauri and Ancient Race... maybe more if the right goals come up.


As a counter to this, DAF was the most picked start world in my group (we did a "choose from red/blue after goals before hand" set up before RvI came out), yet was a bottom feeder in terms of win percentage. In my group it has the appearance of winner, but the forced start and lack of real synergy with anything (their isn't much that helps alien cards once they are in play) punishes it. the fact that it's a production wolrd is its saving grace.
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Elgar wrote:
SC is one of, if not the best of, the red worlds pre RvI. It is far from a clunker.


Oh it's ON now, Elgar. You aren't just some random person on the intrawebs you know. I know where you game. I hope you take your 100 merciless beatings playing Separatist Colony as the sobering lesson you so obviously need when I school you in 100 games straight! Consider the gauntlet thrown down.

[Actually, of the red worlds, SC is probably second or third best, beaten only by Epsilon Eridani and maybe Damaged Alien Factory... red worlds in general suck. But that's a story for another article...]

Quote:
Let's assume for the moment that SC is average (an average of our opinions) and compare it to IW.


This is the sort of distorted logic that must have created Imperium Loserlord in the first place. His stats are just a tweak off similar cards... he can't suck that much can he?

Oh what a few tweaks do.

Quote:
Not that I agree, but lots of people view ELC as one of the worst start worlds. I think Ancient race is one of the worst.


Heathen. Bring your uncouth ways to Gencon and suffer ignoble defeat.

Quote:
In conclusion, I don't think you've given IW a fair shake...


Was there anything in the tone of this that gave you the impression I intended to be strictly fair with the His Loserlordness? Can you win with this boat anchor tied to your waist? Sure. It just isn't likely.
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I prefer Imperium Warlord over of most of the military start worlds. (Rebel Cantina & Separatist Colony are equally worthy.) I might play other military start worlds, if the starting hand or goals give a stronger suggestion.

Both it and SC give you explore powers - helping on two goals. The math of even just one more explore card, makes it solid.

IW's worth 2 VP. The "Imperium" bit gives you several 6-cost developments that like it. Yes, Rebel Alliance can target you - but it would need to be drawn by the right player, with the right mix of cards for it to be a threat.

The groups that I've played with choose the takeover rules, but it's rare that it comes up at all...much less more than once a night.
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hibikir wrote:
Lately, I'm a lot less happy when I start with a military ladder in my starting hand hand and my starting red world is the Damaged Alien Factory. It might be a military world, but it provides no military and has no military replacement effect!

Not that the world itself is unplayable: It's just that it feels more at home in the blue pile.
I agree. Every other Red homeworld in the game helps you play out an early military strategy. However, this one encourages a Produce/Trade strategy very similar to that of Ancient Race (in fact, both net you +4 cards per cycle, and start effectively one card down). I've always wondered why it is a Red homeworld instead of Blue.
 
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Tom Lehmann wrote:
No, the Damaged Alien Factory is *not*, by itself, vulnerable to either the Rebel Alliance or the Imperium Cloaking Technology.

You must have either placed an Imperium card (for RA) or have positive Military (ICT) for DAF to possibly be subject to a takeover.
That's what I get for posting moments just before needing to depart, but yeah, there's another half to the vulnerbility indeed.
 
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12 Rebel military worlds doesn't sound like much, but if you phrase it as "one out of every three military worlds" it sounds bigger.
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onigame wrote:
12 Rebel military worlds doesn't sound like much, but if you phrase it as "one out of every three military worlds" it sounds bigger.
Yes, but the reb military worlds are also have the weakest powers, and the most victory points...
Captain Obvious wrote:

Early in the game, you want powers not victory points, because the powers will get compounded many times over the course of the game, where the victory points are not used until the end. Therefore you want the most powers possible in your homeworld, and the fewest victory points.

There are the two defense-2 rebel worlds that buck this trend, and Rebel Warrior Race is nice, but that's about it for the opening.

If there was an "Eugenics Warlord" with the same powers as Imperium Warlord, but instead of the +1 reb mil, it had +1 green mil, I would greatly prefer Eugenics Warlord, just because there are those four quality early green uplift windfalls, and that's exactly what you need at the start of the game.
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Yet another reason my play group has stopped playing with start words. Just deal everyone 9 cards and let them keep 6 instead.
 
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I'm trimming out some stuff from the original just to cut down on the size. Hopefully it won't break anything, or confuse people.

cosine wrote:

Oh it's ON now, Elgar. You aren't just some random person on the intrawebs you know. I know where you game. I hope you take your 100 merciless beatings playing Separatist Colony as the sobering lesson you so obviously need when I school you in 100 games straight! Consider the gauntlet thrown down.

[Actually, of the red worlds, SC is probably second or third best, beaten only by Epsilon Eridani and maybe Damaged Alien Factory... red worlds in general suck. But that's a story for another article...]


I'll be expecting you with open door, and no mercy. Just be ready to run away with you tail between your legs like the scared little monkey you are!

IMO EE isn't that good. It's too "jack of all trades, master of none". It wants to be military, it wants to be prod/consume, but really its just too slow for either.


Quote:

Heathen. Bring your uncouth ways to Gencon and suffer ignoble defeat.


Oh I'll bring the heat, don't you worry.

Quote:

Was there anything in the tone of this that gave you the impression I intended to be strictly fair with the His Loserlordness? Can you win with this boat anchor tied to your waist? Sure. It just isn't likely.

Well, when your opinion is that explore and military are weak, and you aren't likely to win with those, then yeah you will come to this conclusion.
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MrWeasely wrote:
onigame wrote:
12 Rebel military worlds doesn't sound like much, but if you phrase it as "one out of every three military worlds" it sounds bigger.
Yes, but the reb military worlds are also have the weakest powers, and the most victory points...
Captain Obvious wrote:

Early in the game, you want powers not victory points, because the powers will get compounded many times over the course of the game, where the victory points are not used until the end. Therefore you want the most powers possible in your homeworld, and the fewest victory points.

There are the two defense-2 rebel worlds that buck this trend, and Rebel Warrior Race is nice, but that's about it for the opening.

If there was an "Eugenics Warlord" with the same powers as Imperium Warlord, but instead of the +1 reb mil, it had +1 green mil, I would greatly prefer Eugenics Warlord, just because there are those four quality early green uplift windfalls, and that's exactly what you need at the start of the game.
?? Rebel Warrior Race is 3def, and even then, it gives you +1 mil-str.

Rebel Fuel Cache
Rebel Miners

Rebel Sympathizers

Primitive Rebel World
Rebel Convict Mines

Grouped by expansion set.
 
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Jorge Montero
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MrWeasely wrote:

If there was an "Eugenics Warlord" with the same powers as Imperium Warlord, but instead of the +1 reb mil, it had +1 green mil, I would greatly prefer Eugenics Warlord, just because there are those four quality early green uplift windfalls, and that's exactly what you need at the start of the game.


The Eugenics Warlord is called 'Rebel Cantina', and it's a lot more popular than the Imperium Warlord in my group. I've seen a first turn where the cantina picks develop, plays Rebel Pact, and plays an uplift windfall for free. Not exactly overpowering, but it's a scary proposition.
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onigame wrote:
12 Rebel military worlds doesn't sound like much, but if you phrase it as "one out of every three military worlds" it sounds bigger.


It might sound bigger, but it isn't actually any bigger. It just isn't a worthwhile angle to pursue unless fate hands you the right cards. I really think it's going to see only charity play.
 
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Wow. I'll have to disagree with many of these conclusions.

SC >> most other military start worlds. The explore power is that deadly. As military, you *will* be exploring. +2 to see is disgusting that way. If I see SC going military, I cry a little inside (unless it's my SC, of course).

I don't think IW is that bad at all. Not as good as SC or NS, but a far cry from bad. I'm far more hesitant to go military with EE due to its consume power. And here's a quiz for you: Which other military start world is automatically worth 2 points on 2 of the military 6 devs? (Edit: Not counting DAF? Hehe..)

Besides which, and here's the kicker, it all depends on your starting draw. If you lead with IW and zero support for military, you deserve to be kicked. But give me IW (or SC or NS), New Military Tactics and Alien Robot Scout Ship and I'm a *very* happy camper.

I like DAF. It's not that it combos with a ton or enables anything special -- it's having an ALIEN production world from the start. First turn? Produce. Second turn? Consume/Trade for 5+ cards. It's far more difficult for any other start world to draw 5+ cards on turn 2. Not to mention it combos with a couple of the goals and can work for almost any strategy. Military? It's a military world and can leech goods from consume/produce. Consume/Produce? Here's your first production world.

And what's with the hate for ELC? That used to be one of the strongest start worlds. We use to joke that the one who played ELC automatically won. Yes, it's a little weaker (as is all consume/produce), but it's far from ineffectual or bad.
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DAF is hard to like sometimes. First turn, you're discarding a card - your start handsize resembles that of Ancient Race, except it starts with a good. (Turn 2, 7 cards.) DAF doesn't get that for another turn.

Ever lose your homeworld to Imperium Cloaking Technology? DAF does. (It's possible with New Sparta, but harder. And you can't lose a good if you lose Sparta.)

Produce first turn is a handy action - hopefully no one else is getting advantage from it, such as...
ELC: Free blue good
Cantina: Free card (or two)
Doomed World: They kept it for a reason - let's hope the reason is not Lost Species Ark World.

I'm saying DAF has it tough in many ways. It gets advantage on several goals - First to 3 Alien, First to 1-of-each-type, First to 4 Goods, Most Production planets. (It's also the only homeworld that is worth 3 VP to a sixer.) But for my playing style, I choose DAF based on goals...opening hand couldn't bribe me enough.
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MrWeasely wrote:
There are the two defense-2 rebel worlds that buck this trend, and Rebel Warrior Race is nice, but that's about it for the opening.

If there was an "Eugenics Warlord" with the same powers as Imperium Warlord, but instead of the +1 reb mil, it had +1 green mil, I would greatly prefer Eugenics Warlord, just because there are those four quality early green uplift windfalls, and that's exactly what you need at the start of the game.


I think you can tweak the Imperium Warlord to do this - just give it a +1 trade power (and probably reduce the VP down the 1 or 0, probably 1, and maybe nix the +1 look. Or maybe even just +1 rare/novelty trade). Thematically it doesn't make as much sense (you'd have to call it Imperium Arms Cache World or something) but it might work. There's a comparable amount of 1 mil rare worlds versus 2 mil genes windfalls and 1 mil novelty versus 2 mil rares.

So the new start world would look like this
Imperium Arms Cache World
Cost 2, VP 1
I: +1 look
III: +1 mil, +1 Rebel mil
$: +1 rare trade, +1 novelty trade

Maybe even make it VP 0.
 
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