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Subject: What do you think of Gen Synthesis? rss

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Remy Gibson
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Myself, I hate it.

(Note: This post is a duplicate of one posted at simonkamber.dk/ti3.)

Once upon a time, many years and forums ago -- and, therefore, unrecoverable to modern minds -- a discussion raged about how Gen Synth and Dacxive Animators had overlapping abilities. To be completely honest, I didn't follow all of the arcane reasoning behind this discussion, as it happened around the time of the release of Shattered Empire and I had never seen Dacxive in a game to that point. I did find myself swayed by the argument about the redundancy of these two techs; my own experience in trying to take a Home System which had been freakishly enhanced by Genetic Synthesis (Generative Synthesis?) finally pushed me over the edge into accepting one of the suggestions of a board regular (PsiComa, to judge by the accreditation on my site; it's possible that the version I've been using is related to Shattered Ascension).

When making up new technology cards to fix problems that I had with certain things, this was one tech that went under the knife. It was followed by Assault Cannon -- which I have since repealed -- Fleet Logistics, Integrated Economy, and Nano Technology. As you can see, many of those don't see much use in a typical game. The same can't be said of Gen Synth, which is somewhat popular. The version that I have been playing with for years is: 'GF +1. ST on 9 or 10.' I like it.

I suppose if you had to boil down my feelings about Gen Synth, it would come down to this: The tech is annoying. Offhand, I can't think of another technology that can be so frustrating; probably the mechanic that comes in a close second would be the Diplomat/Diplomacy. I should probably put forth a better reason than "feelings", though.

Gen Synth's power lies in its ability to make a Home System with the appropriate amount of Ground Forces protecting it almost invincible. In this, it surpasses even the Diplomat, as the best that Leader can do is delay things by one round. While I agree that Home Systems ought to be difficult to take, I think this is accomplished in large measure by their proximity to each other; immunity to many game effects also helps. To put it another way, Home Systems are difficult enough to conquer without Gen Synth.

Add to this the situation where somebody's Secret Objective -- and possibly their best route to victory -- relies on conquering a Home System. The Objective system is capricious enough as it is; it seems unnecessarily harsh to me to impose further restrictions of this nature.

Furthermore, in a game that starts to bog down when players consolidate power in one centralized location (i.e. "turtle"), this particular technology only serves to exacerbate that flaw.

On top of all of that, you have the conflict between Gen Synth (which resuscitates destroyed Ground Forces) and Dacxive Animators (which resuscitates destroyed Ground Forces). I have far fewer problems with Dacxive, and this is mainly because of the notable restrictions that are placed on it. The primary restriction, of course, is the need to win the combat to benefit from the tech; the secondary restriction is the number at which the tech is successful, a 6. Gen Synth, which is lower on the tree, is actually more likely to succeed that Dacxive -- which makes no sense to me -- does not require you to win the combat -- which makes no sense to me -- and actually perpetuates itself in the middle of the combat -- which makes no sense to me. (The only other mechanic that operates like this is the Shock Troop, and a strong case could be made that those shouldn't generate mid-combat, either.) Not only are these techs redundant, with both of them generating a similar effect, but Gen Synth is notably stronger AND the two conflict with each other to such a degree that exact priority needed to be established in a FAQ.

All of these problems -- and I maintain that they are problems -- could be eliminated by modifying the tech. At the very least, you should have to wait until the end of the combat before rolling for all of those casualties. (This follows the old proverb, "If it's good for the Dacxive, it's good for the Gen Synth.") This eliminates the brokenness of the tech; it doesn't, however, remove the redundancy, which is why I continue to advocate for the adjustment to Shock Troops. I am open to other suggestions, though, so long as they can avoid duplicating functionality.
 
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We play both of them as after-combat effects. For the same reason you suggest. The idea of getting troops back in the middle of a combat is, well, asinine. Though honestly we started out assuming it was supposed to happen afterwards and just never corrected it. Still won't.
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Dave Taylor
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Aweberman wrote:
Not only are these techs redundant, with both of them generating a similar effect, but Gen Synth is notably stronger AND the two conflict with each other to such a degree that exact priority needed to be established in a FAQ.


I really don't see any "conflict" between them. GS reanimates troops as the battle rages. After the battle ends, troops that are still dead (i.e., that weren't reanimated with GS) may come back with DA. The only thing that creates a conflict is your proposed house rule to make them both work only at the end of the battle. That also makes them even more redundant IMO.

Aweberman wrote:
All of these problems -- and I maintain that they are problems -- could be eliminated by modifying the tech.


To be quite honest, I rarely see this tech used. Maybe my group is weird or something. I've certainly never felt that enemy use of GS was the only thing that stood between me and victory.

But if it's a problem for your group, house rule it and see what happens.
 
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John Doe
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Blackadder23 wrote:
I've certainly never felt that enemy use of GS was the only thing that stood between me and victory.


Ha, I played a game of TI3 last week as the Arborec, Gen Synthesis is downright nasty when used in conjuction with the arborec's ability to spam a prodigious amount of infantry.

I pulled out a win last game because I could roughly triple my forces (resources being the limiting factor) with a single cc on each planet. I won with no ships on the board and my HS blockaded.


X-89, its the only way to be sure.
 
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Bill Norton
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Never been a fan of gensyn as written.

Changes the game for the worse. I did the numbers one time and while I don't remember the details. It took like 20 GF to kill 10 GF or something ridiculous like that.

Bill
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Zack S.
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How many times do you absolutely have to take over one particular opponent's home system? If someone builds 10 GF on a home planet, I'll probably just go elsewhere for my VP, regardless of whether he's got Gen Synthesis or not...
 
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JH
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I was able to successfully hold off a traitorous invasion by an opponent attacking with a War Sun, a loaded Carrier and a bunch of other crap with my side only having a decent number of GF (6 or so, I think), a PDS and Gen Synthesis — he rolled over my fleet, but he didn't really prepare for a strong ground defense.

I think the difficulty the technology can present a player trying to take over a Home System should be weighed against the ability it grants to mount an effective home defense — the attacker facing Gen Synthesis may (and should) find it difficult to gain their 2 VP from taking over a Home system, but the defender who loses his Home system is out of the running for points entirely until he can take it back. The impact is greater there, and assured for any player except Saar who loses their Home system, whereas Gen Synthesis is only a real problem if you happen to draw a Secret Objective that requires a Home system takeover.

In short, I like Gen Synthesis and would buy it again! Dacxive Animators only triggers if you win — Gen can keep you from losing.
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Gene Griffith
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I'm inclined to agree with the fact that it isn't that overly strong - since the reinforcements come back on your home system it's meant to be a powerful home protection and let you avoid the need to keep building GF on your home system after you've initially made a good investment on them in production use. The reason GS and DA don't really conflict is because DA is intended to allow you to keep pressing forward from planet to planet with your GF's that you would normally be forced to replenish after a close fight.

I rather agree with the statement that if someone has gf stacked on their systems, punish them somewhere else. Blockade the system and send your fleet elsewhere, if you really need the homesystem for VP you can wait on X89 and get their system practically free (losing cards sucks but can be mitigated with proper planning).
 
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Seren of Moon
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What if the GFs are destroyed by any other means? For example, an AC or a PC (e.g. Lord of Mecatol Rex).

Do they still get to revive themselves because they were "destroyed"?

Do they continuously loop through revivals. Let's say you start with 3 GFs and all die in battle. 2 regenerate from GS. Then those die in battle. Do you roll again and again and again if the HS itself is being attacked?
 
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Scott Lewis
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SWC_Seren wrote:
What if the GFs are destroyed by any other means? For example, an AC or a PC (e.g. Lord of Mecatol Rex).

Do they still get to revive themselves because they were "destroyed"?

Do they continuously loop through revivals. Let's say you start with 3 GFs and all die in battle. 2 regenerate from GS. Then those die in battle. Do you roll again and again and again if the HS itself is being attacked?

Not sure if you are asking legitimately or if I'm missing something (as I know you know the rules pretty well), but the answer to both of these using RAW is "yes".
 
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